Lately I’ve been in the mood for straight up romances. No romantic suspense, no paranormal, no erotica, just two people finding themselves and each other, falling in love and living happily ever after.
I think part of the reason I’m so obsessed with those particular stories right now is because I just came off a Romantic Suspense kick. I love suspense as much as the next reader, maybe even more so. I cut my teeth on Goosebumps and King and Koontz. Prior to reading my first Romance Novel, I read nothing but mysteries.
But lately, I’ve become disgusted with Romantic Suspense. I have a really hard time suspending all disbelief and actually falling for the ol’, “We’re hiding from a gunned madman who’s been shooting at us and our lives are in danger, but all I can thinking about is that sweet behind pressed up against my fly”. I mean, come on, be honest, if you were in a life threatening situation, would your first thought be “I want sex..now, dammit”?
Like so many other Romance Readers, I want a little sex in my books…and sometimes, I even want a lot of sex in my books. But I want the sex to be believable. And when a couple is hiding behind a tree in the woods with some crazed killer five feet away, that’s not a believable time for a sexual encounter. After they ditch said crazed killer and are holed up in some dirty motel room? Sure. We all want that reaffirmation of life after a death defying experience. But right in the middle of battle? I don’t think so.
But then, I’m not a man. And we all know men generally have one thing on their minds and one thing only. So I thought, “maybe I’m wrong. Maybe a man WOULD be thinking nothing but sex with a crazed killer five feet away.” So I asked MM. Basically this is the scenario I put to him:
We’re in bed sleeping and we hear a noise in the living room. He gets up to investigate and finds someone in our house. He sneaks me out the window before confronting the would-be burglar (because my safety is of the utmost importance to him, naturally) and in the meantime the Burglar sneaks outside, pinning MM and I behind a tree. Now, for those of you who don’t know, MM is a cop. So of course he’d have a gun drawn at the time.
So there we are, hiding behind a tree, with me pressed up against MM while he tries to track the Burglar and we wait for backup in the form of the Boys in Blue to arrive. Is he thinking about how good it feels to have me pressed up against him and how amazing my breasts feel pushing against his back?
His answer? Well, probably it’s not fit for polite company. But the gist of it? Uh..no. He’d be thinking about getting me to safety and where the Burglar was and how soon backup would arrive. He’d be trying to decide if he could leave me to investigate further or if he should stay with me in case I needed protection.
Now, MM is a pretty randy guy. He thinks about, talks about or tries to get sex more than most guys I know. It’s on his mind pretty much 24/7. But in a dangerous situation, he’s not going to be thinking about boinking me, he’s going to be thinking about keeping me safe.
That I believe.
So I have to wonder, if that’s the case, why do so many romantic suspense authors fill their books with so much UNBELIEVABLE sexual tension? Or is it just me? Maybe I’m reading too much into the constant sexual attraction between protagonists in RS books.
What works for you and what doesn’t? Do you think too many RS authors cross the line when it comes to sexual tension? Or don’t you notice?
I could name examples, but I think anyone who’s read RS knows what I’m referring to.
Tell me, am I all alone here?
*Please note: I’m not referring to erotica here, just straight romantic suspense. Erotica, IMO, is a whole other ball of wax.