A Terrible Beauty: A Romance

A Terrible Beauty: A Romance

3.4 36
by D. W. St.John

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After suffering the greatest of personal Tragedies, Dai O’Connel is no longer willing to lie. A headstrong Welshman twenty years in an Oregon classroom, he refuses either to lower standards or to implement the feel-good nonsense of Outcome Based Curriculum, and as a result is targeted for dismissal. Sent to document his failings is Solange Gonsalvás,


After suffering the greatest of personal Tragedies, Dai O’Connel is no longer willing to lie. A headstrong Welshman twenty years in an Oregon classroom, he refuses either to lower standards or to implement the feel-good nonsense of Outcome Based Curriculum, and as a result is targeted for dismissal. Sent to document his failings is Solange Gonsalvás, Oregon’s youngest assistant superintendent. Known both for breathtaking attractiveness and her dedication to the job, she is relentless in pursuit of incompetent teachers. Deeply believing she can make the district’s schools better, while struggling with her own concept of what school should be, Solange finds O’Connel not at all as she expected. Principled, confident, very good at what he does, Dai is not the kind of teacher Solange forces from the classroom—but more than competence is at stake. District politicos demand O'Connel's ouster, and if Solange wants the top job, she must take his. Bewildered by the intense attraction she feels for the man, Solange must choose between ruining an outstanding teacher's career and furthering her own, a career for which she's sacrificed everything.

“St.John takes critical aim at all the teaching theories and experiments that school districts churn out on a regular basis, which totally ignore the abysmal track record of earlier programs and the basic needs of its students. This novel is an inside view of the anger and frustrations felt by teachers in failing school systems.” Booklist

“Descriptions of classroom conflicts, successes, frustrations will touch readers to the core. The teacher and student among you will cheer out loud as this novel progresses…” National Public Radio

Product Details

Elderberry Press, Inc.
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225 KB
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Here is where a writer is supposed to tell you all about the exciting things he's done. How he's wrestled crocodiles in Tanzania, bounced drunks in an Amsterdam brothel, smuggled guns to Cuba and sat in as drummer for the Who in Tokyo. Well, I've never done any of that, but hey, nobody's perfect.

My life is much like yours. I'm just another soul shoe horned into a meat puppet biding my time until I return to the one.

These stories are just dreams I lived. If I've done my job even passably well, then you may live them, too.

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Terrible Beauty 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 36 reviews.
Hebe_Rejevick More than 1 year ago
Remember when novels were about more than just romance... or horror... or mystery? Remember when they also were about real people doing real things who happened to evolve a mutual attraction? This is one of those. If you've ever taught school (I have) you'll get this story. You may not agree with it, but you'll get it.
Zeppo_Mezziotrichio More than 1 year ago
Remember the best teacher you ever had? The one who made you think? Who blew you away with ideas you'd never heard of? Who loved his subject so much that it made you love it? Now imagine him being fired for caring too much. Imagine the woman sent to fire him caring about children just as much. Now imagine them intensely attracted to each other... What a ride!
Gerrard_Gereaux More than 1 year ago
This teacher is about as un-PC as you can get. That's going to tick a lot of people off. He is like the best of the profession. He cares about his students and considers teaching to be a sacred trust. Remember the teacher who stood between his students and the guns at Columbine? He's that kind of teacher. He's the immovable object. Now the irresistible force... a very hot, very dedicated woman sent to fire him because of parent complaints. If she does it, she gets a promotion. She spends a week observing him and documenting his infractions. One problem: He's the best teacher she's ever seen. When they both find they are attracted to each other, that's when the fun starts.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Many romances are so unrealistic, so fantastic and unlikely that I can't get into them. This one is about people with real lives and I believed every word of dialog, every scene... There must be people like this. Loved it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was so good.It gave you an inside view of what a teacher is up against with the school system and with everything ,politics is always an issue. The story made me laugh, cry and get angry for the kids who really try. thank you for a great book!
Diana_the_Huntress More than 1 year ago
Some novels set up situations that just thrill you to the core... this is one. The male and female lead have every reason to dislike each other, but the attraction is undeniable for them both. I love books like that. Strong woman, too. And I really liked the ending. If you love romances you should try it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Didnt care for how it ended felt like something was missing unless there is gonna be a book 2?
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
430 pages. Learned a few things about the school system...not good things either.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I know it has some grammer isuse but overall it the story was great. The story was exillarating or AWSOME.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
OMG This is soooooo bad. Obviously the author was educated under some of the worthless systems descried in the book: poor grammar is the most outstanding hallmark of the book. I could only manage to read as far as p325, and I had to force myself to get that far. The book is filled with poor plotting, an erratic heroine with daddy issues, and an idealized yet semi-suicidal hero (who of course is attracted to the beautiful, tragic --and also somewhat crazy-- heroine who is going to fire him to further her career). I hope sincerely this author is not a teacher; she / he is clearly too uneducated to do a good job: or maybe that is the point???? To the author: please, before you publish again, I'm begging you, learn grammar, study GOOD plot deconstruction, and get an editor!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A plot, an honest to God opinion, extremely real characters and dialogue; other than a chase scene or graphic sex depiction I don't know what more you can ask for! Having dealt with exactly the situations depicted in this story; only from a parental standpoint, I have unfortunately seen exactly the same things happen in our schools. Only now am I beginning to see some small hope that it is getting somewhat better. I put my youngest child into a private school, even though it nearly bankrupted us to do so, to get this kind of teachers to educate my child. Bravo to the author!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Although I enjoyed the first hundred or so pages of the book,I found the book to become more and mote unbelievable as the book went on. The beginning of the book reads like an overview of what is wrong with the education system and gives mini case studies in a fictional format. The overalll format of the book seems to suggest that the author is looking to have this produced as a movie since the main chatacter is larger than life and events in the book become increasingly over the top.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm not really sure how to describe my feelings about this book. The story wasn't anything I'd normally care for. In fact, I would say it's a bit boring. However, the language was so beautiful, and the descriptions of small moments so entrancing and just REAL, kept me going. I'm not certain if the formatting was just not jiving on Nook, or what, but there were a lot of randomly placed spaces within words, where it made things kind of jumbled. Also, it's very difficult to tell just who is speaking what when there are more than two characters present, due to lack of descriptors or names. I would say the wonky formatting and the dialogue issues are what kept me from giving this eBook a higher rating, but it was fairly enjoyable.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
There were a lot if grammatical errors that were distractingm but the overall story was definetly excellent. As a student, i can very well relate to who O'connel fights to keep his job for. Have an even greater respect for teachers now than i did before.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I honestly couldnt read anymore after around 240 pages of this 400+ page book... i guess i just got bored but thats because im more into books with more action. Although, the bulk of what i was able to read of this book was really good and insightful. Good read for those who dont mind the slower plot.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love an excellent novel. This novel causes for a reexaminatin of the question of mainstream education and the problems associated with NOT truly allowing teachers to do what they are paid to do..... teach. Faced with parents in denial, sports frenzy or complete lack of caring for children, administrators who are after the next grant to teach inane subjects or policies that defy common sense, school board members that believe theier children should have more leniency than the average student... the list goes on. I have a personal stake in seeing that my children are eduated and recently removed my daughter from mainstream education and placed her into an alternative night school program that allows her to have a 12 to 1 ratio, online access to her books and school work, emphasis on core studies and working with students who go to this school becuase they want to.
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jjcb More than 1 year ago
Interesting and informative with strong characters and good storyline. Slow pace but steady and entertaining, it's engaging.
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