CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED.  THE WINNER IS BONNIE FAHY!  Thanks to all who played.

 

It’s hard to believe this blog will celebrate its first birthday on Friday.  I can’t throw a party, so I’m hosting a contest giveaway instead.  Yep, another reason to love Valentine’s Day!

To be eligible to win, all you need to do is leave a comment to this post naming your favorite romance trope (and, if you can, your favorite book based on that trope).  The contest will close at noon on Valentine’s Day.  If you win, you can choose between a $30 Amazon or Kindle gift card, or a box of high-quality chocolates.  Romance+sections+of+RSA

For those who aren’t familiar with romantic fiction tropes, a basic definition is “a common or overused theme or device.”  Here are several popular examples:

Boss – secretary/underling
Plain Jane makeover/ugly duckling
Amnesia
Best friend/little sister
Love triangle
Marriage of convenience
Secret baby
Loveable rogue
Star-crossed lovers
Second chance/reunited lovers
Unrequited love

My personal favorites include unrequited love, best friend’s little sister, and the loveable rogue.   When I think about that, it probably has something to do with the fact those stories closely align with my personal romantic history.  Friends can attest to the dozens of cases of unrequited love littering my middle and high school years.  Accordingly, I love a story in which the guy finally appreciates the love right in front of him.  The sibling/love thing?  Well, I married one of my brother’s best friends (although I’m older, not younger).  Finally, as with most women, I’ve known a charming bad boy I couldn’t tame, so I love to vicariously tame “him” in a book!

Unfortunately, I am not a reader who can enjoy a trope I find unseemly in real life.  For example, the secret baby trope never works for me.  I spend the entire book being irritated at the woman who kept the baby a secret from the father.  I can never believe the hero would fall in love and forgive her for something so heinous.  Similarly, amnesia is hard to pull off in a credible way.  It can be done, but it seems forced and unnatural.  And finally, a significant love triangle is difficult to swallow.  Having strong feelings for two different guys (or girls) at once is not something I can relate to, so it is hard for an author to sell me that story.  I usually end up mad at the person who can’t seem to make up his or her mind (yeah, that’s you, Bella Swan) and I lose respect for the two people who are waiting around to be “chosen.”

Now that I’ve shared my opinions, tell me yours.  What is your favorite romantic trope (and can you suggest a book based on it)?

I’ll announce the contest winner on the blog and on my Facebook page on Valentine’s Day after noon EST.

XO-Jamie