Monday, October 31, 2005

But I don't want to read real life

Sometimes I get the most interesting ideas from reading message boards. I was reading one today where a reader was looking for books with plus size heroines and that got me thinking. This is just me mind you, but I suppose I might, perhaps, maybe fall under that category. But the very last thing I want to do is read about something that hits close to home. I don't necessarily want to read about waif-like heroines but I certainly don't want to read about plus size ones. That's why I was hesitant to read He Loves Lucy - with good reason it turned out. I know many people liked this one, but I disliked it intensely. I’ve liked all her other books which is why I decided to give this one a try. I’ve read a few of them and have to say I haven’t liked any of them. Wishes by Jude Deveraux is a book that seems to be a favourite – at least by a lot of readers at Amazon, but I loathed that book.
Maybe it’s because there is an unwritten prejudice towards larger sized people, women in particular, that really bothers me and since I fall into that category some might say, the last thing I want to do is read about it. And I wonder how many authors really “get” what it’s like. I read romance to escape real life, not to identify with it.

Age falls into this category too. Although the young innocent 18 year olds no longer hold any real interest for me, I also don’t particularly want to read about older heroines either. Forty-five is about tops for me, and even that is really pushing my envelope with the exception being of course if the hero is younger. Now that I can get into easier. On the whole though, my heroine age preference is late 20’s to mid 30’s in contemporaries and heroines in their 20’s for historicals.

Anyway, that’s my deep thought for the day.


‘til later

7 comments:

Karen Scott said...

Now you see, I quite like reading books with'rubenesque' heroines, I think it's romantic.

Although I like my heroines to be beautiful, young etc etc, I think it's much more romantic to imagine that a drop-dead gorgeous hero is able to not just see beyond the heroine's physical appearance, but is able to enjoy the way she looks.

Also the cover art may influence whether or not you pick up a book. I've noticed the trend to still have average sized women representing the plus-size heroines. I guess it's all about marketing, but I always thought it was cheating in a way.

Tara Marie said...

To a certain extent I also read for escapism, but to be honest, I don't pay a whole lot of attention to what the h/h look like.

The problem with plus-sized heroines we're usually getting beat over the head with all their body faults. I can look in the mirror for body faults, I don't need them enumerated through the course of a book. The characters are what they, "rubenesque" (I love that word) or "bean pole" describe them once and move on. I don't want what the characters look like being the driving force of the story.

When it comes to heroines, I'm not into 18 year olds, but the top age always seems to be around my own. When I was younger a 40 year old heroine was boring and old, and now 40 is great, I guess it's all relative--LOL.

Nicole said...

I enjoy reading about plus-size heroines (and am "plus-size" myself). I like the idea that the hero sees beyond the heroine's weight to the person she really is. I think that's the appeal to me.

Jay said...

Karen, it annoys me too when someone is described as plus size only to find out she's a size 10. That's normal to me, not plus size. And yeah, like you Tara, I hate how some authors turn weight into a character/personality trait. No need to go on and on about how chubby you are and how could anyone find you attractive. Once is enough, thankyouverymuch.

Kristie said...

I think it says something about me that I don't like them. I've never accepted the weight thing about me. I think I'm still amazed 30 years later that a man loves me and finds me attractive the way I am. We went swimming on our first date and that was so difficult for me to do. But we went out again after that. And again and again until we got married. (On our second date we gave blood - weird I know). So obviously my husband saw the real me. So in that way I don't mind books with plus heroines - but it's when the weight of the heroine IS the main issue - that's what I don't like.

CindyS said...

Exactly!

I have that Lucy book but I have been unable to pick it up. I read Bet Me and I understood everything about the character and I enjoyed that the hero bought her donuts. I didn't like that he wasn't attracted to her right away. It definitely threw me off.

I know I am over weight and very much a plus sized woman. My weight is something I think about daily but I don't ever wonder if my husband thinks I am beautiful. My husband has gained weight over the last few years also and his appeal has not changed for me so I have to believe that when he says it hasn't changed for him that he is telling the truth.

Do I still wish I was the skinny girl he married? Yeah. But I am not going to self destruct because I am not.

That is what I want to see in a plus sized heroine and so far, she hasn't made the scene. I want her to look at herself and say 'yeah, I'm not skinny but, *damn* I look good!'

I did read a book years ago that I was furious about because the heroine took her body issue so far that I knew she needed to see someone about it. It was so in your face that I started to think 'get over it already!!'

I also don't enjoy reading about characters that are over the top gorgeous. I'm not one of those people either and I definitely have a bias there.

Hmm, I may have to blog on that one.

It's good to see you online Kristie.

CindyS

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