Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Rules of a Romance Novel

I am half way through the final book of The Curse Keepers Series by Denise Grover Swank and I am digging it. It is good so far. Action packed just like I like em. I love it when the characters have to work for their happy ending. 
Did you know, if a book does not have a happy ending is cannot be considered a romance? This is somewhat logical in form, but not all great romances have a happy ending. Look at Casablanca, if it is not a romance how else would you classify it? Or the story of Cleopatra, even Romeo and Juliet, neither of these have a happy ending but are still considered romantic in nature. One of my favorites, Camelot, one of the most romantic stories of all time is not considered a romance because Guinevere winds up in a convent, while Lancelot and Arthur go off to war.
Now if we really want to analyze the structure of modern day romance, let’s talk about LGTB romance. Many times these titles are not even categorized as romance. They are subjugated and broken off into their own little genres, happy ending or not.
Another rule is the “only have eyes for you” scenario, there cannot be another love interest in the story so that eliminates the love triangle.
Another apparent rule, that I was surprised about, is POV, apparently we shouldn’t care what the hero thinks as the POV of the heroine is the focus. Personally I am going to snark at this rule, as I am a reader who likes to know what is going on in the hero’s head. I want to know that he is holding back and why or that he is pining for her. That to me is one of the best parts of a romance novel. What is not said between the two characters and that only the reader knows.
I know, I know, how I dare snub my nose to the romance gods! Well, sorry, I am a reader and a writer. I write what I want to read. Sometimes it includes the “rules” and sometimes it doesn’t.

True love doesn’t always play by the rules, why should I?

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