Bites, Lashes, Trauma, and Plot Device When the heroine has scars—indicative of a brutal backstory—which she considers disfiguring and the hero assures her are a testament of her strength The violence or abuse that caused the scars will typically interfere in the romantic relationship. At the very least because the heroine thinks she's not good … Continue reading Archetype Sighting! Scarred Heroine
When a writer creates a hero that's too many things, she has to fill the reader's expectations for that hero, plot-wise and romance-wise. Juggling too many and fitting them all in one book is difficult—though not impossible—and makes the story and the hero seem over the top.
Yes, mentally, Charlotte is still a woman, and proves to be more than capable of doing a "man's" job, working as a secretary, but physically she is no longer the "fairer sex." Charlotte proves her mental and emotional mettle, but by transforming, she doesn't validate that women are physically as capable as men.
When the hero and heroine DON'T have a telepathic relationship exactly... Reversing or confounding mental invasion in vampire romances indicates significant change to the archetype. In monster theory, one of the vampire's greatest weapons is the ability to penetrate personal sanctums/the mind. Also note that the telepathic abilities are a burden to the possessor, causing … Continue reading Trope Sighting! Vampires and Telepathy
Reasons basically estranged characters get married in Regency romances Some books use more than one of the following tropes Arrangement, including Blackmail or Betrothal: his and/or her families have colluded to arrange their marriage and for complex reasons the hero and heroine are compelled to comply (ex: Triumph and Treasure) Compromised: due to unavoidable or … Continue reading Genre Police! Urgent Marriages in Regency Romance
When the hero unwittingly sleeps in the same room as the heroine in disguise and she watches him get undressed, lusting after him in plain sight When the hero discovers the heroine is female and sees her naked: either this sight is the moment of discovery or occurs nearly simultaneously, but on accident of course … Continue reading Two-for-One Trope Sighting! Heroine disguised as a male
But I am struck by the number of paranormal and urban fantasy books featuring a heroine who has vowed or neglected her magic at the start, and must come to terms with her powers in order to "save the day" or to embrace who their true identities. What makes this trope repeatedly/simultaneously occur to contemporary authors?
When a hero/heroine's friend, who has been mourning their dead partner/mate/etc., discovers they've been alive all this time! *Cue the sequel* TYPICAL GENRE: I think I've seen this most in Vampire or other immortal creature paranormal romance series EXAMPLE: Hidden due to spoilers, Sequel Reasons for the Mysterious Disappearance has a greater purpose/destiny/responsibility they must … Continue reading Trope Sighting! Widowed (but turns out not really)
When the hero sees, often first meets, the heroine on what he assumes is a runaway horse, but upon closer discovery or interference, discovers she is an adept horsewoman, which he finds very attractive. FEMINIST THEME: The heroine who does not ride side-saddle and/or has better horsemanship than a man! TYPICAL GENRES: Regency Romance, Historical … Continue reading Trope Sighting! Heroine on Horseback