oracne - Victoria Janssen (oracne) wrote,
oracne - Victoria Janssen
oracne

romance tropes you love and hate

This post was actually a comment over in oyceter's LJ, but it was so long I figured I might as well make it a post. She had asked what tropes in romance novels always work for you, and which ones drive you nuts, and which that could go either way, depending on execution.

My list:

Generally sword-proof:
*Conflicts that arise from within the characters
*Nice, ordinary heroes (think Carla Kelly)
*PTSD, Napoleonic Wars-style
*Marriages of convenience
*Virginal males (not that you see this one often)
*Banter
*Cross-class romances
*Secretly intellectual heroes/heroines
*Angstful spies, bonus if it's wartime
*Equestrians, musicians, and the well-traveled
*Comfort sex

In-between tropes:
*Virgin widows
*"It was all planned by our parents for us to fall in love! And we never knew!"
*I mostly don't like very young heroines, because I want them to have some life experience.

Things that drive me bugf*ck:
*Destined Lurve and/or reincarnation and/or Genetic Mating or scent-marking or whatever the hell weird shit means there's no WORK to the relationship
*Melodramatic suspense plots
*Instantaneous cures for lifelong angst
*Stupid misunderstandings that could be solved with one conversation
*Historicals in which all behavior is completely modern (though I can sometimes handle modern-sounding dialogue, depending on my mood and the book)
*Women who long to be Mastered by a Man, and not for occasional erotic thrills
*Men who Know What's Best for their women and don't learn better
*Long separations between hero and heroine, especially if reason is stupid
Tags: downtherabbithole, genre, romance
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