Monday, February 19, 2007

Smartie-Bitchery about Mills and Boon

Some of you may remember back in December I got a big bag of books that were destined for the dumpster. Granted many would say that's where they belonged, as they were just a bunch of Mills and Boon romance novels, right? Not worth saving. Well, I'm not severe about it. I'll give any book a try (That's not true, I refused to read "Miss Smilla's feeling for snow" because it sounded bleh. I know it's probably good, many folks have raved, including Husband but I just don't want to read it.)

They are quick reads, and as they were December toss-outs, many have Christmas themes. They seem to have a page count around 250-300. The authors all seem to cram as much action into these stories as possible. Not all of them are sexy either - some are just plain romance with "fade out" to bedroom antics, and only at the end of the book after they've confessed their love, which is fine, I can accept that. I'm not all about the lusty passion you know. I like a bit of old fashioned romance. The problem I find with these stories is, they don't focus enough on the relationship that is building. It seems the characters are "love at first sight" and whizz-bang in love just like that. There's no romantic tension, no sexy talk, no overtures, no close proximity goosebumps and uncontrollable smirky, giggly grins. There's none of the "Oh my gawd he can't possibly like me, as much as I like him, I feel like such a doofus!" and he's thinking "I would so have her if only she could show me I had an in. I feel like such a doofus!" and they play that game of charming seduction. Or, just as good is that "I Hate Until You Die and Then I Will Hate you Even More, You Cad/Vixen," where there's going to be no possible way these two people will come together and fall in love. And yet the author makes it work. You got to love those!

I Found there were too many coincidences, too many assumptions, and too much testing of my suspension of disbelief. I read a historical called The Vicount, by Lyn Stone, which wasn't too bad, but I didn't like the fact the Hero and Heroine touched so much at first meeting, like affectionate family - even though she shows up dressed like a man having just escaped from an insane asylum where she was left after being kidnapped and lied to the Vicount to try and get him to give her a a man. Once he realizes the other guy is a woman, then that knew each other when they were kids it becomes all hands on forearms, she touches his chest, they touch foreheads, and he kisses her hair. This is 1859, I seriously doubt they'd be touching that much. It bugged me. Also, thier sex was bad, it was bad sex. It was deliberately bad sex at that. The one thing that made me laugh out loud was this line, which described the Mother-in Law's eyes "They were grey like granite. They were granitelike." Anyways...

I also read Don't Open Till Christmas by Leslie Kelly which again I kind of liked. The drawback on this one was that the Heroine had bladder control issues because every time the Hero came near her she had "a flood wetness between her legs." I mean all the time. She must need depends or something to cope with all the panty soakings she endures during this novel - not to mention for their lives hereafter. There was also kind of creepy moment where she was going to give the guy a blow job, but just licked the wet spot on his boxer shorts. It was...just...yeah. Moving on.

I'm trying to spot if there's a formula to these books, and the authors are trying to fit their ideas into the formula. I have about a dozen more to read and I'd like to think they'll improve. I'm optimistic. I like the fact I've found no typos or grammar mistakes. That's good right?


geezer squeezer! said...


Kate R said...

Licking boxer shorts. Hmm. My dog tries to eat underwear whenever she can. Maybe she's a romance heroine.

I liked Smilla's sense of snow too.

Chunks said...

I apparently need to read (more) romance novels.

Anonymous said...

Okay, but can you use the words "Talking Urinal Cakes" in a sentence, as a local news service did?

OK, sorry---that's not romantic at all. Except---apparently---the device (in a woman's voice) addresses the pisser (heh!) as "Big Guy".

Here's the link:



Sylvana said...

Your post made me laugh out loud - especially the "granitelike". Fabulous!

I'm thinking that maybe I'm missing out on the fun by not reading books like that.

Lyvvie said...

Geezer - No man, You're the GAYlord!! Love you!

Kate - She very much enjoyed licking his boxers, and he enjoyed having his boxers licked. It was an unusually voyeuristic moment, but not something I think I'd see in a porno. I'm sure Smilla is a great book, but I have an unexplained prejudice against it. Like I'll never watch the movie "Against all odds" either. Don't know why, just don't want to.

Chunks - What are you reading? You should share.I've read some of the books on your suggestion list, but what's in your hands right now? And Congrats on the House!! WooHoo!!

Anonymous B - Seriously, who are you - you must introduce yourself. Is this a challenge for me? To write a story where Talking Urinal Cakes feature? Perhaps an adult fairy tale...I could try at least.

Sylvana - It's The Vicount that features Sylvana Hall in it and had me thinking of you. If you wish I'll post you the book, just e-mail me an address to send it to me at lyvvie(at)bruhaha(dot)co(dot)uk

Weary Hag said...

Egad. I simply don't read enough. A good friend of mine bought me three books for Christmas but they are not stories... they are word reference books.

Your writing does crack me up sometimes, Lyvvie! You're too cute.

Maja said...

Hmmm, all those romance novels sound depressing for some reason!