The Hellion, by LaVyrle Spencer

The Hellion by LaVyrle Spencer: Book CoverFinished 4-25-11, rating 2.5/5, romance, 293 pages, pub. 1984

It was well known around Russellville, Alabama, that Tommy Lee Gentry drove like a rebellious seventeen-year-old, drank like a parolee fresh out, and whored like a lumberjack at the first spring thaw.  He owned a four-wheel-drive Blazer for his hunting trips, a sixteen-foot runabout for his fishing trips, and a white Cadillac El Dorado to impress the town in general.  He was rarely seen driving any of them without an open beer or an on-the-rocks glass in his hand, more often than not with one arm around some carmine-lipped floozy from up Muscle Shoals way, his left hand dangling limply over the steering wheel and a burning cigarette clamped between his strong white teeth.

first paragraph

Tommy Lee and Rachel were raised together.  They lived next door to each other and their parents were good friends.  When they fall in love as teenagers it was no surprise to anyone.  What was a surprise to the teens was an unexpected pregnancy and a major push from their parents to keep them apart when they needed each other the most.  Now they are both 41 and there are no obstacles between them except the lives they’ve lived while apart.

If you enjoyed the first paragraph I included and would like to know more about Tommy Lee, then this is the book for you.  For me, the story wasn’t deep enough.  Obviously, being a romance and all, Rachel’s love was going to reform the wild Tommy Lee, but unfortunately, I was never really drawn in. Somehow the two of them lived in the same smallish town for over 20 years and yet they never spoke or saw each other.  The missing years made no sense to me.  And I don’t think this is Spencer’s best writing.  It was one of her earlier books and it did feel dated.  I used to gobble up Spencer’s romances as a teen and I remember loving a few of them.  This one was not one of them, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to read the rest of the ones in my stacks.  I just won’t be rushing to do so.  Do you have a favorite LaVyrle Spencer romance?

This was from my personal library.

16 thoughts on “The Hellion, by LaVyrle Spencer

  1. Misha says:

    I have not read a book by this author yet!
    I am sorry to hear that the story lacked depth – that’s enough to spoil any book!
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  2. Mary (Bookfan) says:

    That’s quite a paragraph, LOL. Sorry the book didn’t work for you. I read a Spencer book many years ago but i couldn’t even tell you which one. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t good enough to remember – it means I’m THAT old 😉

  3. Carol says:

    I love romances, but this doesn’t sound like one I’ll pick up. I know small towns, you can’t live in one for 3 years let alone 20 without running into someone and/or knowing all about their life.

  4. Margot says:

    You are the only person I know who reads LaVyrle Spencer. I read them all at one time before she retired. The only one I have left is Fulfiment. I also remember Camden Summer. I liked them all at the time but I couldn’t tell you their titles. I actually don’t remember this one so maybe they’re not all that memorable? Nah. They’re fun reading.

  5. Staci says:

    I’ve read all of her books but it’s been a LONG time ago. I know that I was pretty upset when she retired and realized that I wasn’t going to enjoy another book by her. I liked Small Town Girl and enjoyed the movie too.

  6. Susan says:

    I used to love LaVyrle, and I remember loving this one when I read it. I doubt that I would care that much for her writing now, as my tastes have changed quite a bit. My MIL loves Morning Glory and has read it several times.

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