Help A Bitch Out

HaBO: She Read it in Swedish

Lisa writes:

I’ve been looking for this book on and off for the past years – the problem
is compounded by the fact that I first (and second, and third, and
fourth…) read it in its translated to Swedish Harlequin incarnation, so
have no idea what it might have been called in the English original.

At the beginning, the woman is working as some kind of showgirl in Paris,
when she meets this guy who’s been watching the show. Turns out he’s her
step-brother, and he’s come to find her cause her mother, who by all
accounts was a selfish bitch (and not in a good way), managed to persuade
his father before her death to bequeath half of the inheritance to the
daughter, to spite the son.

So naturally the step-brother thinks she’s a golddigging bitch like her
mother, but despite this takes her to the chateau she now owns half of (or
something like that). I remember that they together discover some hitherto
unknown cave paintings on the estate, and that she manages to get lost in
there, but he finds her and declares his everlasting love.

Would you be able to help me find? I don’t know why this one has stayed
with me, but I’d really like to try and read it again!

Given how much the titles change in translation, this would be hard to locate in English, I think. Anyone read this one?

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  1. 1
    Vicki says:

    I don’t remember the name but it was a Harlequin and that is exactly how the story goes. Yes, cave paintings, gold-digging accusations. I am sure someone can find it.

  2. 2
    Polly says:

    Am I misreading, or is this a step-brother/step-sister romance? Is it just me, or is anyone else squicked? Please tell me they’re not blood related.

  3. 3
    Polly says:

    Never mind, my mind just caught up with my fingers and I see how they can be not related (step- not half-, doh).

  4. 4
    scribblingirl says:

    if you’re related by marriage, you’re related…probably just my own issue but a step brother/sister relation is just too close for my own comfort

  5. 5
    Polly says:

    A scribblingirl: It’s too close for me too. The squick is still there, even without the blood relationship.

  6. 6
    Christine says:

    I remember this one, but I’ve got nothing on the title.

    They were sort of step siblings since they met as adults after the step-parenting marriage ended.  Certainly closely grazing the squick trigger, but it was okay the way it was handled.

  7. 7
    Kelc says:

    Must defend step-sibling relations. I married mine…just kiddin’. Sorry, if someone out there has. I was a joking!

    Haven’t the read the book, but I could cope with the sitch as long as they weren’t raised together in a happy-family-sibling or miserable-family-sibling atmosphere. Met as adults? Could definitely buy into.

    Now, the stories about actual sibling romance. Eeeeeeeeew.

  8. 8
    JoAnn says:

    I knew a couple who each had a single parent. As their relationship got more serious, the parents met. The parents fell in love and married a couple of months before their children—the couple I knew—did. When they would meet new people, they would say they had married their brother/sister, laugh and tell their story.
    Technically they are step-brother and step-sister, or were until they married, assuming marriage overrides the step-ness (?). It would be creepy if they were raised together, but there are a lot of situations that where the step-relationship is only a technicality for me.

  9. 9
    SonomaLass says:

    I hope someone knows this one.  I’m all over the idea of cave paintings in a Harlequin!

    Steps who weren’t raised together meet as adults and are attracted?  No big deal.  Happens in YA, and IRL.

  10. 10
    sableheart says:

    I remember being slightly squicked by the ex-sibling relationship of Cher and her One True Love, Josh, in Clueless.

  11. 11
    JamiSings says:

    Never read this book but in defense of step-sibling dating – My nephew and niece are step-siblings as well. While my brother knew my niece’s mom for awhile, he never dated her. Then his son started dating her daughter and eventually my brother started dating my SIL.

    There’s no “ick” – they’re not related by blood.

  12. 12
    Gwennie says:

    My husband’s widowed grandparents (one from each side) married, in their 60’s, making my husband’s mom and dad sort of retroactive step-sibs. Although I never, ever thought of it that way before seeing this post!

  13. 13
    Aphasia says:

    I read a romance once (strictly because I couldn’t believe what the back cover copy seemed to be saying) in which the leads are a man and his dead dad’s much younger trophy wife. Ick! Don’t remember anything else about it unfortunately…anyone?

  14. 14
    JamiSings says:

    Um, again, if they’re not related by blood what’s the big deal? Granted, if my dad died and mom married someone else and she died, I wouldn’t want to marry my step-dad, but that’s because mom and I have totally different taste in men. The men she finds good looking I find repulsive and vise-versa. (I think that’s why she’s not-so-secretly afraid I’m a lesbian. Because she’ll say a guy is cute and I’ll say he’s ugly. She just can’t accept I find tall and scrawny men sexy. Especially tall and scrawny with big noses.)

    But still, we’re talking step-mom and step-son, not related by blood. If she’s a trophy wife then it likely means she didn’t love her husband or he her. We’re not talking first cousins here or even a father taking a son to a bordello, having the first go-round while sonny boy watches so he can learn, then him having to lose his virginity to the same woman his dad just had sex with without her even so much as bathing first.

    There, now isn’t that worse then falling for your dad’s widow? I mean, at least she’s had a chance to take a bath.

    And remember, some religions actually require a man to marry his brother’s widow. My vocal coach told me once that if things were like they once were in Christianity, he would’ve been required to marry his widowed mother-in-law and keep her sexually satisfied.

  15. 15
    amp says:

    I read a romance once (strictly because I couldn’t believe what the back cover copy seemed to be saying) in which the leads are a man and his dead dad’s much younger trophy wife. Ick! Don’t remember anything else about it unfortunately…anyone?

    I actually checked out a romance from the library that sounds like the one your describe: It is called *Bittersweet Rain* by Sandra Brown.  The young late twenties step-mom had a brief summer romance with the son of her now dying husband.  The husband dies and is revealed to be a terrible person which makes her getting together with the son okay.  IT really does walk the line in terms of taste.

  16. 16
    MaryK says:

    I thought of Captive of Desire by Alexandra Sellers because it has cave paintings, but that’s the only similarity.  The paintings are in Wales, and the hero is a Russian refugee.

    I did find this cool website while searching though:  http://www.historicalnovels.info/index.html

  17. 17
    Angry kitty says:

    read a romance once (strictly because I couldn’t believe what the back cover copy seemed to be saying) in which the leads are a man and his dead dad’s much younger trophy wife. Ick! Don’t remember anything else about it unfortunately…anyone?

    Sounds like Bronwyn Jameson’s The Bought-And-Paid-For Wife (Sil. Desire) She was married to his dad who died… think it was platonic? (she needed money for upkeep of disabled brother).  The estranged son thinks she’s a gold digger and comes to confront her about (something).  Pretty good read, actually.

  18. 18
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  21. 21
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  24. 24

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  25. 25

    Alexandra Sellers because it has cave paintings, but that’s the only similarity

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