Saturday, April 30, 2011

Thoughts on Love, Sex, and Humanity

In many paranormal romances I've read, there is often frequent, non-monogamous sex, especially early in the book and often in the first scene. Sometimes even gratuitous sex. Complementary body parts flying around, diving into whatever orifice is readily available, because that's what shifters or vamps or demons "need".

Don't get me wrong. I love to read and write paranormals. I always get a kick out of this truism of the genre though, not only because it's sometimes fun to read a down and dirty scene without a bunch of emotional baggage, but also because it's a somewhat obvious trope. They aren't "human"--the very term human often being use as an insult in PNRs. Therefore, sex is just

Paranormals aren't the only place you see this play out. You could also insert other genres here, including macho men occupations such as military, or ex-military special forces types (lots of those running around apparently), cops, etc, where the 'humanity' has been stripped from the heroes, the better to do their jobs, which usually involves the need to kill without qualm.

However, don't forget this is a romance. So sure, there will come a time in the story when love begins to rear its ugly head, and won't THAT be a fight for all involved. The protagonist will be disparaged by another non-human entity (or fellow macho man...or their own subconscious...or sometimes even the object of their affection) for their tender feelings, will be sneered at for being too human. Love is seen as a weakness, a failing, a vulnerability to exploit.

Ah, but love will triumph. And while the no-strings rampant sex always reads like it's on fire, there is no comparison to the incendiary sex immediately following the realization (and before the end of the story, the declaration) of love. The tenderness, the emotion, the connection between the participants is unprecedented, unparalleled, unrivaled. A satisfying completion for all involved, including the all-too-human reader...

How do you feel about the urgent sex in PNR and macho-men books? Over the top or understandable? Hot and smoking, or does it gets your eyes a-rolling?


  1. I am not so much a fan of paranormal -I read it and I suppose the first few scenes gratuitous sex is getting more common place than a meeting of the minds before sex begin scenes in para books - so I will be honest and say I just go with it.

    I have bypass author if I figure that that's their style or I sometimes just get bored of it after a few books in a series and stop reading.

    As for the macho man genre, Romance suspense is my first love and a close second crime fiction so I am all for the MINIMAL romantic scenes.

    I get "the theatre of war" mindset that a few author gets right, and so women,love and kids are pretty decent bargaining chips for any criminal worth their salt.

    I also expect an author to where possible use the "Honour amoung thieves code" so an houourable criminal would not cross that line that family and loved one falls behind.


    on the other hand I do not read crime fic/rom sus for the "honourable criminal" so I have no qualms about "do what needs to be done and taking happiness when you can".

    and this is where the passion of the instant sex, the sex that just seem to be scene after scenes, the sex that logistical sometimes is impossible and make no bloody sense to me... comes in.

    It's silly, it's too much and more often in recent reads it looks like it's being used as page filler.

    but it brings in readers to the genre and the industry so who am I to complain..

    I stick to the bread and butter authors that I know do not write like that... or at the least make the protags connect and become friends rather than sex partner who are attracted to each other for only what's below the waist...

    Sorry to rant hon...


  2. Usually leads to much eye rolling. :)

  3. I guess I haven't experienced any of what you are talking about. I've read lots of paranormals over the years and didn't find that much sex as opposed to any other. Certainly no orgies or big sex scenes at the beginning. You must be reading different books, lol


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