J is for Jeopardy

Damsels in distress. It’s a timeworn plot device. And for good reason. It touches upon our inner fears and, upon a successful outcome, allows us to sleep at night assured all will be well. In romance novels that is. Horror novels are a whole ‘nother kettle of fish. There’s probably a deep psychological reason I don’t deal well with horror and all my stories turn to romance. Or maybe it’s not so deep.

In times past the women in jeopardy were pretty useless. Fainting heroines in desperate need of smelling salts…and a good slap across the face….were the norm. You can probably tell such stories make me want to burn books. And I don’t believe in burning books.

Today’s leading ladies have a strong inner core. They might be in just as much danger as before but nowadays they’re not going to hide in a closet and pray it goes away. They’re proactive, sometimes to the point of folly, and the books of Christine Feehan aside, aren’t generally interested in finding an alpha male to protect them. They’re much more likely to stand side-by-side their chosen mate than hide behind him. And much more inclined to smack would-be attackers with a frying pan than allow them to tie her to a railroad track.

As I like to say, today’s romances aren’t your mother’s Harlequin. Why not pick up one and give it a try?