Today on Romance Writers Weekly blog hop we are talking books with older couples. Those couples who have experienced life and for whatever reason come together in an
epic love story maybe not later in life, but not right out of the gate.
I don’t usually do this, but today I am going to do a bit of self-promotion, because my new release that has been out in the world less than a week, is currently may favorite read with a couple who has been around the block.
I write historical romance, so very often the heroine is young and naïve. Don’t get me wrong, I love reading about a woman coming into her own and learning along the way, but I had this one character in my mind for a long time that knew the world on an intimate level. She was the opposite of the young, virginal Regency heroine. She had lived life.
She met her hero when she was the young and starry-eyed debutante in search of a husband right out of the schoolroom. They instantly clicked and it was a whirlwind romance. Unfortunately, circumstances forced her hero to marry another woman to avoid scandal, leaving her to face the scrutiny alone.
In those dark days she made choices that changed the direction of her life. Now, 20 years later she is not the bright eyed, naive girl she was, but a wisend woman, who made her way as London’s most sought after courtesan.
She not only is a character, (pun intended) but those people she has surrounded herself with are not your typical lords and ladies one would expect in a Regency novel.
My hero has come back from a diplomatic post, following the death of his wife to be with his daughter who was recently married, no expecting her first child.
He wants nothing more than to retire from the foreign office and take his place in parliament and live a quiet life with no one depending on him. He is done with being the responsible one.
When these two meet again, though his need to champion the woman he never stopped loving is too strong and he would do anything to see her safe and happy. Even leave his seat in parliament if that is what it would take.
So, why is this my favorite mature couple romance right now? Well, as a writer of historical romance, I’m not going to lie; it was nice to not have to write the virgin sex scene. Let’s face it in reality most of us know that was not like a scene in a movie where angels sang, and fireworks went off. They are often clunky and awkward scenes to do them justice, or they are fiction and she has no pain and orgasms the first go around. (Yay her!) It was refreshing to write the first love scene between a couple where none of the awkwardness or unease existed. These were two people who knew what they liked and didn’t like. They also knew the possibilities of how the experience could be. I was able to concentrate less on the mechanics and more on the deep emotions that their first love scene together brought them.
As a reader, I loved how they were both individual people, set in their ways. It made me love them even more, when I realized they had to get beyond a lot of experience, and old set in habits before they could open to one another.
Having the heroine be a courtesan allowed the story some leverage in shying away from the typical women’s roles in historical romances. She eschewed society’s rules before the story started, so as a reader I went on the ride with her to see how it worked for her, but also how it worked against her. Many historical romances don’t allow for the idea that there were women even in the Regency period that chose, for whatever reason, to thumb their nose at convention.
I have always believed that human nature is human nature no matter the time period. And, just like today, there are people who choose to take a harder path away from what society deems as “appropriate”. In every era of history there were both men and women who chose a more difficult path. Rarely, do we get to see those heroines in historical romance novels, because many readers want the traditional Regency miss. If you have read my books, the only heroine I have that could come close to that description is Zoe from Winn’s Fall. Most of my heroines turn their back on society, or society has turned its back on them.
I love to look at what a character will do when they are set against the world as it were. I am never disappointed.
Do you like books with older, more mature couples as the hero and heroine? What suggestions do you have for me to put on my TBR pile?
Leeza Boychuk, a 48-year-old bookstore manager with a philandering ex-husband and a failing business, discovers a time-stained WW2 diary and becomes engrossed with returning it to the soldier’s family. She enlists the help of Gavin Fletcher, an enigmatic widower, which leads to an unexpected romance.