First of all, a big thanks to the Book Bingers for asking me to write a guest post. I feel so special. 😛
So basically all I’ve got are some ramblings on characters: historical and contemporary heroines and characters in series.
Historical vs. Contemporary Heroines – what gives?
A hero is a hero – no matter what time period he belongs in. I expect the same characteristics from a man no matter when or where: a good looking guy, not too arrogant, but confident in himself and sexy to boot. This transcends space and time. It doesn’t hurt if he has an affinity for animals and he really gets the heroine. LOL But the heroine? That’s a different story. A virgin from the 1800s is going to be different from a virgin in 2007. The rules of society for our historical heroine are strict and she is to be innocent (but not naïve) and in need of a husband to cherish and protect her. (Hogwash, but you get the picture, right?) Any heroine who is a thinker and practical and kind of chafes at these rules is always a winner in my book. But a contemporary heroine has to go a little bit further to impress me. Why? Because I compare her actions to my own. And I know that I’m real and these are fictional people and they have a different background and blah blah blah – but if I were to put myself in that situation, that’s the criteria I use. Some situations, this would be hard to do. Like say Cormia from Lover Unbound. LOL That’s a bit out there, but I know what I like, and I don’t like her. Someone like Xhex, for example, impresses me. She’s a security guard – and that’s a heroine that floats my boat. So maybe I’m not necessarily comparing a contemporary heroine to myself, but more like an Angelina Jolie character. Ha ha (But I’ve got a girl crush on her, so of course I’m biased) But I’m sick of girly girls and I want a heroine that I can see kicking ass. So I judge a contemporary heroine more harshly than I do historical chicks, what about you? (As an aside, who know which heroine has got it going on? Victoria Grantworth from Colleen Gleason’s Gardella Vampire series. She kicks ass in a historical time. A winning combo!)
Characters in Series – my thoughts
Two things with this one. First – although I feel there are way too many series out there, I kind of prefer them. Especially with slightly longer series, where we really get to know the characters. I’m not a psycho rabid fan-girl who obsesses over the characters, but I admit I like to read about some of my favourites. Like Max and Gina from Suzanne Brockmann’s Troubleshooter series. And hello, Robin! There’s one character whose story I was eagerly awaiting for ever. And I’m the same way now about John from the Black Dagger Brotherhood and Ash from the Dark Hunters. Sometimes though, this knowledge of a character hinders my ability to enjoy a stand alone novel. I mean, who are these characters? Why do I care about them? In reality, it’s the author’s job to make me care and get to know, and that’s fun too. But there’s no real emotional attachment. A prime example of a novel that throws my thoughts about this subject out the window is Loretta Chase’s Lord of Scoundrels. That novel worked because Jessica kicked ass, and then we got to know Dain really well. I really cared then! But sometimes, I don’t want to pick up a stand alone because I’m just lazy to get to know new people. I guess you gotta be in the mood for some strangers. But I find series comforting in a way.
Unless…the author freakin’ gives the character a lobotomy between books! That’s the second issue – when a character differs from book to book. Prime example? Lillian from Lisa Kleypas’ Wallflower series. Ugh. I really liked Lillian in It Happened One Autumn. She was kind of kick ass. But when we get to Daisy’s book? Who the hell is this whiny baby? I don’t care that she’s pregnant and worried about her sister moving away from her – she was horrible!! Another character who isn’t the same? ANITA BLAKE. But don’t get me started on her. LOL Just give me some good characters. That’s all I’m asking.
Am I off the wall or just hard to please? LOL Who do you think writes good heroines?
Thanks again ladies!!