In a Class by Itself

( 28 )

Overview

One of romance's best-loved authors, Sandra Brown creates love stories whose "larger than life heroes and heroines make you believe all the warm, wonderful, wild things in life."* Now the New York Times bestselling author delivers a powerfully erotic and deeply moving tale of a woman reunited with her first and only love--a man who wants what she denied him ten years ago....

In A Class By Itself

Dani Quinn knew Logan Webster would be at her ...

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Overview

One of romance's best-loved authors, Sandra Brown creates love stories whose "larger than life heroes and heroines make you believe all the warm, wonderful, wild things in life."* Now the New York Times bestselling author delivers a powerfully erotic and deeply moving tale of a woman reunited with her first and only love--a man who wants what she denied him ten years ago....

In A Class By Itself

Dani Quinn knew Logan Webster would be at her high school reunion. Yet she had come in order to prove to herself that she was not afraid to see him again. Her departure years before from both Logan and the small Texas town where they were sweethearts had been abrupt, painful, and not of her choosing. Worst of all, she'd never had the chance to tell Logan the truth of why she had to leave. Now she would not only have a chance to explain, but to ask him for a favor. Handsome, charming, and dangerously charismatic, Logan exudes all the power and confidence of a self-made success. He listens as Dani describes her work for a charitable foundation and expresses her hope that he will donate one of his properties for a much-needed summer camp. Logan agrees, but with one shocking proviso: that Dani fulfill the intimate promise she made to him years ago. It is meant to be a coldhearted business transaction...but this time when Dani is once again compelled to leave without an explanation, nothing can keep Logan from following.

*Rendezvous

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A novelist who can't write them fast enough."—San Antonio Express-News

"Author Sandra Brown proves herself top-notch."—Associated Press
Library Journal
Dani Quinn returns to the small Texas town where she spent her high school years to attend her tenth reunion. While there, she has the opportunity to renew a relationship with Logan Webster with whom she had eloped when both were teens. Her parents subsequently took her away and had the marriage annulled. Dani moved to the big city and briefly married and divorced; she then became actively involved in working for an organization that helps disabled children. Logan tries to determine how Dani really feels about him and why she never came back until now. In the first half of this audio version, romantic interludes dominate to the extent that one loses the thread of the story line. It is not until the second half that a plot takes shape and the motivations of the main characters are revealed. Elaina Erika Davis does an adequate job of conveying the emotional exchanges between the couple. Recommended mainly for Brown fans. Catherine Swenson, Norwich Univ., Northfield, VT Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553576023
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 11/28/2000
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 213
  • Sales rank: 363,792
  • Product dimensions: 4.15 (w) x 6.85 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Sandra Brown
Sandra Brown is the author of more than fifty New York Times bestsellers, with over seventy million copies of her books in print. She and her family divide their time between South Carolina and Texas.

Biography

In 1979, Sandra Brown lost her job at a television program and decided to give writing a try. She bought an armful of romance novels and writing books, set up a typewriter on a card table and wrote her first novel. Harlequin passed but Dell bit, and Brown was off and writing, publishing her works under an assortment of pseudonyms.

From such modest beginnings, Brown has evolved into multimillion publishing empire of one, the CEO of her own literary brand; she towers over the landscape of romantic fiction. Brown has used her growing clout to insist her publishers drop the bosom-and-biceps covers and has added more intricate subplots, suspense, and even unhappy endings to her work. The result: A near-constant presence on The New York Times bestsellers list. In 1992, she had three on the list at the same time, joining that exclusive club of Stephen King, Tom Clancy, J. K. Rowling, and Danielle Steel.

Her work in the mainstream realm has taken her readers into The White House, where the president's newborn dies mysteriously; the oil fields and bedrooms of a Dallas-like family dynasty; and the sexual complications surrounding an investigation into an evangelist's murder. Such inventions have made her a distinct presence in a crowded genre.

"Brown is perhaps best known now for her longer novels of romantic suspense. The basic outline for these stories has passionate love, lust, and violence playing out against a background of unraveling secrets and skeletons jumping out of family closets," wrote Barbara E. Kemp in the book Twentieth-Century Romance & Historical Writers . Kemp also praises Brown's sharp dialogue and richly detailed characters. "However, her greatest key to success is probably that she invites her readers into a fantasy world of passion, intrigue, and danger," she wrote. "They too can face the moral and emotional dilemmas of the heroine, safe in the knowledge that justice and love will prevail."

Critics give her points for nimble storytelling but are cooler to her "serviceable prose," in the words of one Publishers Weekly reviewer. Still, when writing a crack page-turner, the plot's the thing. A 1992 New York Times review placed Brown among a group of a writers "who have mastered the art of the slow tease."

Staggeringly prolific, Brown found her writing pace ground to a halt when she was given a different assignment. A magazine had asked her for an autobiographical piece, and it took her months to complete. Her life in the suburbs, though personally fulfilling, was nonetheless blander than fiction. That may be why she dives into her fiction writing with such workhorse gusto. "I love being the bad guy," she told Publishers Weekly in 1995, "simply because I was always so responsible, so predictable growing up. I made straight A's and never got into any trouble, and I still impose those standards on myself. So writing is my chance to escape and become the sleaziest, scummiest role."

When she started writing, her goal was always to break out of the parameters of romance. After about 45 romances, the woman who counts Tennessee Williams and Taylor Caldwell among her influences told The New York Times that felt she had reached a plateau. In fact, she doesn't even look at her books as romances anymore. "I think of my books now as suspense novels, usually with a love story incorporated," she said. "They're absolutely a lot harder to write than romances. They take more plotting and real character development. Each book is a stretch for me, and I try something interesting each time that males will like as well as women."

Good To Know

  • "I hate to exercise and only do so because I absolutely must."

  • "I love to eat and my favorite foods are all bad for the body. Fried chicken and gravy, TexMex, red meat (hey, I'm from Texas!). My only saving grace is that I'm not that fond of sweets. Salty is my thing. Chocolate cake and ice cream I can skip. But a bag of Fritos. . ."

  • "It takes me a long time to go to sleep, usually because I read in bed and hate to put down the book. But when I do nod off, I'm a champion sleeper. I can easily do eight or nine hours a night."

  • "My worst "thing" is mean-spirited people. People who deliberately belittle or embarrass someone really irk me. The people I admire most are the ones who find something good about even the most undesirable individual. That was a quality my mother had, the one I hope most to emulate."

  • "I have a fear of gravity. Recently my whole family went to Belize. We had several adventures. We tubed a river through miles of cave, wearing head lamps so we'd have illumination. No problem. I scaled Mayan ruins. I rode horseback (on a monster named Al Capone) through the rain forest. No problem. But I couldn't zip line. Even though my five-year-old grandsons did it with glee, I just couldn't make that leap."

  • "I and my husband are huge fans of Jeopardy! We never miss it if we can help it. Does that make us complete dorks?"

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      1. Also Known As:
        Laura Jordan, Rachel Ryan and Erin St. Claire
      2. Hometown:
        Arlington, TX
      1. Date of Birth:
        March 12, 1948
      2. Place of Birth:
        Waco, Texas
      1. Education:
        Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters, Texas Christian University, 2008
      2. Website:

    Read an Excerpt

    Chapter One

    She was nervous.

    “You’re being ridiculous,” she muttered to herself. “Stop it.” Unfortunately, knowing such nervousness was ridiculous didn’t make it miraculously disappear. And when one began talking to one’s self, things had come to a sad pass.

    Her clammy hands shook as she locked the car door behind her and tucked the eelskin purse under her arm. She ran one of those damp, trembling hands over her golden hair. It had been wound into a chic, tight chignon at the nape of her neck. If only her anxiety could be as easily controlled as her hair.

    Taking one last deep breath, she followed the sidewalk to the Elks Lodge. Music popular a decade ago was blaring from the building. She went through the door which had been propped open to prevent a bottleneck. The bass percussion of the music hit her like a soft blow to the chest. Brilliant beams of light struck her eyes as the spotlighted mirrored ball rotated overhead. Laughter and noisy conversation rippled over her in palpable waves. Her senses were stimulated by the very vibrancy of the party, yet she stood uncertainly just inside the door.

    “Dani! Oh, my heavens, it’s Dani! Dani Quinn!”

    The woman sitting behind the table that served as a registration desk jumped from her post and rounded the table with her arms spread wide. Dani was enclosed in a vigorous hug against breasts that were even more pillowy than they had been ten years ago. At that time those breasts had been the envy of every girl in the class; indeed, in the school.

    The bearer of the enviable bosom pushed Dani back and gave her a long, thorough once-over. Disgust registered on her animated face. “I swear to God, I hate you. You haven’t gained one damn pound in ten years! You’re gorgeous. Gorgeous!”

    Dani laughed. “Hello, Spud . . . I mean Rebecca.”

    “Hell, it’s still Spud!” the woman shouted on a raucous laugh.

    “You mean you still like french fries?”

    Spud patted hips that had finally caught up to the proportions of her chest, possibly even exceeded them. “Can’t you tell?”

    The women laughed and hugged each other again. “You’ll never change, Spud. It’s so good to see you.”

    “And you, though we see you in the Dallas papers all the time. I was hoping that up close I would be able to see signs of age or at least detect telltale scars.” She inspected Dani’s hairline closely. “No face-lift. Just naturally beautiful and ageless, dammit. Stay away from Jerry,” she growled.

    “You and Jerry are still together?”

    “Hell, yes. Who else would put up with me?”

    Jerry and Spud had gone together since their sophomore year in high school. Dani envied them their uncomplicated life together. “Children?”

    “Four. Heathens all. But they’re with a sitter tonight and I’ve forgotten them for several blessed hours in which I plan to get downright tipsy.” She turned back to the table. “Here’s your name tag, not that anyone will have forgotten you. Most beautiful girl in the class.”

    “Thank you.”

    Spud yanked the back off the sticky side of the name tag and maternally attached it to Dani’s raw silk sheath. “You put us hicks to shame, Dani. Just look at this dress.” She ran her friendly gaze over Dani’s svelte figure, took in the wide, braided belt with its overlarge brass buckle, the eelskin pumps that matched her handbag. “Neiman-Marcus? But then you always did make the rest of us look like we should go home and start over.”

    “Should I have worn jeans?”

    Spud patted her arm. “Honey, class has nothing to do with clothes. You’d look just as good in a toesack.” She lowered her voice and leaned closer. “Have you seen him yet?”

    Dani wet her lips and averted her eyes. “Who?”

    “Ah, hell, Dani. You know who. Logan.”

    There. It was over. Now she didn’t have to dread it anymore.

    For weeks, ever since she had received the photocopied letter from Spud informing her of the ten-year class reunion, she had dreaded hearing his name spoken for the first time. Well, she had survived. Her vital organs played musical chairs before they found their way back to their proper places, but she was still standing, still breathing. Admittedly, she was breathing erratically, but she was still breathing.

    “Logan? No, I haven’t seen him since . . . Well, let’s see . . . it’s been ten years. Is he coming?”

    “Our class president? Varsity star? Of course he’s coming. He’s into everything that goes on in Hardwick. A regular pillar of the community. He helped me notify everyone about the reunion.”

    Dani’s trembling hand found its way to the hammered gold medallion suspended around her neck from a strand of chunky malachite stones. “How is he?” She didn’t think her air of indifference fooled Spud.

    “Do you mean how does he look?” Spud laughed lustily. “Let’s put it this way. I’ve warned Jerry that there are three men in the world I’d risk ten happy years of marriage for one night with. Robert Redford and Richard Gere are two of them.”

    “Oh.”

    “Unfortunately, Logan’s always considered me his good buddy.” Spud grasped Dani’s arm and pushed her toward the throng. “What am I holding you here for? Go! Mix, mingle, get something to drink. A lot of people want to see you. We’ll catch up on all the rest later.”

    Shyly at first, then, as she recognized more of her former classmates, with more enthusiasm, Dani got caught up in the party. She renewed acquaintances, met spouses, listened to capsuled versions of the last ten years. The class Romeo, who had always been on the make and after three unsuccessful marriages and six children was still on the make, took Dani under his wing.

    “Dani, baby, are you thirsty? Name your poison.”

    “Coke, please.”

    His eyes widened in delighted surprise. “Our Dani has finally shed her scruples! I’ve heard that Greenville Avenue of Dallas really knows how to swing. Care to teach your old buddies some new tricks?”

    “Coke as in Coca-Cola, Al. On the rocks, please.”

    “Oh,” he said, crestfallen. “Well, sure, wait right here.”

    Laughing to herself, she glanced down at the ballot someone had shoved into her hand. Later in the evening, when everyone had had a chance to see everyone else, they were going to award white elephant prizes for the baldest, the most changed, the one who had fathered or mothered the most children, the one who had come the farthest for the reunion, and other such categories.

    “Who gets your vote?”

    It had been ten years, yet she knew his voice immediately. It was deeper, more mellow. But since he was two years older than the rest of the class, by the time they’d graduated, his voice had already matured to that low timbre. It was achingly familiar and straight out of her dreams.

    She raised her head and looked at him. Everything inside her stilled.

    He was more handsome, more magnetic, than she remembered. With no more power than a leaf in a whirlpool, she was swept into that magic aura that surrounded him, that made him appealing to men and women alike.

    Straight off a Scandinavian travel poster, his face had borne the last ten years well. Indeed, the lines faintly etched around his eyes and along either side of his mouth only added another dimension to his attractiveness.

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    Customer Reviews

    Average Rating 4.5
    ( 28 )
    Rating Distribution

    5 Star

    (19)

    4 Star

    (4)

    3 Star

    (3)

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    See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 28 Customer Reviews
    • Anonymous

      Posted January 6, 2014

      I Also Recommend:

      The most fascinating love story of its kind!!!!!!!!!!

      The most fascinating love story of its kind!!!!!!!!!!

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    • Posted February 29, 2012

      more from this reviewer

      exc read

      In A Class By Itself by Sandra Brown
      Danny was married to Logan but on her wedding day her parents took her
      away and for 10 years. She attends the class 10th reunion and he's there.
      She's done a lot of charity work in the past 10 years and is looking for
      land that will work for the camp, for autism and spina bifada kids to be
      able to enjoy a week that they can have fun at. The newspaper hears about
      it, well Logan never told her no she couldn't use the land.
      Something else is going on also...

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted August 15, 2005

      Very sexy

      I thought the book was brilliant! Extremely sexy and realistic, Sandra Brown captured the feelings and raw emotions really well. This was the first Sandra Brown book I have ever read but I'll definately be reading more!

      0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted April 2, 2005

      Did not like it a single bit!

      This book was horrible. Maybe I'm being a little bit immature but this book is just sick! The story did not really go anywhere. From the beginning all the way through the end the book talks about how they grope each other. Then when she sleeps (naked), he touches her. And he barges in on her in the bathroom in only his underwear and starts to say that he's imagined getting ready with her for 10 years! It's totally unbelievable and disgusting! The supporting characters, as well as main characters, were not fully developed and all the book ever talks about is how they want to make love to each other. I thought that was a little too much. Overall, this book was just sick and went no where, literally. My advice: don't read it! If you do read it and don't like it, I'm not going to say 'I told you so', but I did.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted March 13, 2005

      very touching

      If your first love was also your true love, you'll want to read this book. If you are like me and wonder what might have been, you can pretend for awhile that you have a second chance, just like Dani and Logan.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted October 9, 2004

      Great

      This was the first book I read by Sandra Brown and I hope the others are as good if not better.

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    • Anonymous

      Posted May 28, 2004

      A Great Story!!!

      In the beginning of the story it was dragging. It got to be interesting as I continued reading. I love Sandra Brown she is an oustanding writer.

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    • Anonymous

      Posted June 23, 2004

      WOW.

      wow. i couldn't believe this womans words. i mean really i read it in one day. it was one of the first books i read of sandra brown all i can hope for is that the rest of the books i have of hers are just as good.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted February 20, 2004

      Simple Relationship Drama With No Depth

      Cruel fate had smashed their young love into smithereens but ten years later, Dani and Logan are in each other¿s arms again. Determined to make her his for good, Logan concocted all sorts of ways to seduce his lady love. Although Dani could not conceal her desire for Logan, and more than once surrendered to his wiles, she still pushed away when the situation led to an ultimatum ¿ all or nothing. The use of old flames reuniting after a horrible break up, and then finding their passions ignited once again when they laid eyes on one another is an old gimmick. From time to time, I felt that the romantic scenes were forced on the readers and there were too many `¿breasts heaving¿¿ and `¿groins groaning¿¿. But sentences such as `¿ the miracle they wrought went on and on until she was splintered with shards of bliss¿¿ were `cute¿. I even liked one sentence used to describe their argument `¿..his gaze drilled through the space separating them directly into her eyes¿. I thought that a rather clever depiction. However, the heroine, Dani, seemed rather ludicrous. One moment `¿she wants him inside her badly¿¿ and then swiftly she wants to run as fast as her `¿long golden legs¿¿ will take her. One minute she is desperate to escape, and then you find her wallowing in self pity when our swashbuckling hero did not chase after her to declare his undying love. The hero was more `human¿, a man who could not get over the love of his life and even succumbed to tears, yes ladies, TEARS when he was abandoned once again.But the ending held a `bolt from the blue¿ when a secret of Dani¿s is revealed, which actually caused my eye to tear. That particular scene changed my mind to award this novel from a two stars to a three stars. But before that, I thought this work a shameless wallow. For those looking for romances where half the book is about physical pleasure, then you can read this and twitch. A simple novel about relationships, but no profundity.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted June 20, 2001

      I liked it

      This was on e of the many that i did enjoy, but it was not as intriguing as her others.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted June 18, 2001

      Okay, but not great.

      I had a hard time getting into this one. Sandra Brown has written better stories. This one was interesting but not one of my favorites.

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    • Anonymous

      Posted April 3, 2001

      a very well written book about passion and love

      I loved this book!!!! I couldn't put it down. I finished this book it two days it was so beyond well written, and Logen sounded very sexy and manly and Dani sounded very feminine and sexy as well. This wont be my last Sandra Brown novel!!!!

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted January 19, 2001

      just one word.......

      AWESOME!!!!!!! I checked out the audio tape from the library, and listened to the book in one day!!!

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted January 18, 2001

      Disappointing

      Were I not such a huge fan of Sandra Brown's after the Witness and Exclusive I would stop reading her all together after this book. The 'star-crossed' couple is VERY stereotypically masculine and feminine. Dani is not the strong, cunning female protagonist I have come to expect from this author and Logan is completely controlling and unlikeable. Women do not want to be 'taken' they want to be respected.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted February 3, 2001

      I love all her books

      I love her love stories and they have always a happy ending. Thats so beautiful

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted December 13, 2000

      Everyone can relate to this book!!!

      I couldn't put it down!!! This is a compelling story about how love never dies. Everyone can relate to this book in one way or another.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted December 6, 2000

      Excellent Book!!

      I never read, but once I started to read this book, I couldn't put it down. I ended up reading the entire book in one day.

      Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
    • Anonymous

      Posted September 6, 2000

      Great once again

      This was my 2nd Sandra Brown book and I just loved it. The characters were so well done. This book carried itself well from the being to end. It is a very well told romance story, and a must read for everyone.

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    • Anonymous

      Posted August 12, 2000

      True Love Lives On

      This book was great. I'm only 16 years old, but I fell in love with all the characters. A friend of my mother gave me this book to read to help me through my break up with a guy I loved. Let's just say, I didn't put the book down until I finished it. Only one night to read a book, that's kinda weird for me. But this book made me feel like there is true love out there for everyone. Even if you don't think it's true for you. In the end, true love lives on.

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    • Anonymous

      Posted April 17, 2000

      Spectacular plot!

      Sandra Brown has done it again! This was an excellent novel with a superb story line and amazing plot. It was truly captivating. It kept me intrugued through and through. It is a must read.

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