One last thing. "Pride & Prejudice" these books ARE NOT.I did a keyword search on several of these books. Words like, off the top of
my head: chest, touch, kiss, shoulders, desire, burn, feel, neck, handsome,
solid, hard, etc. You know, ones that could tie into
sexuality/sensuality/carnality.Doing this for "Pride &
Prejudice", not once did I encounter the words being used in any sensual
way. With nearly all of the other books (yes, some more than others for sure),
that was not even remotely the case -- they teem with physical sexual
attraction. My search covered a handful of books: some of these Desert Books
"Regency" books, as well as other "Mormon" and (worse)
"Christian" books.How sadly ironic that women read as the
title character SHALLOWLY drools and fantasizes over the hunky guy's body
and his touches all through the story, but claim they love the book because the
man is so sensitive and DEEP. (Oh, and no sex happens, so it's all OK --
These books all follow the same pattern: exploit womens' insecurities and
emotional voids, while giving them an excuse that it's "just a good
story, I don't even think about the sexual parts". And men "buy
Playboy for the articles."The author crafts the female character
to remind readers of their every insecurity, in order to make them feel
vulnerable.The male character serves to "heal" those wounds
through being a combination of hot, muscular and "hard", rich, but
SENSITIVE.The female character--or the reader (it's the same
thing)--claims to just love the fact that the man is so kind and sweet and
sensitive, but throughout the book she repeatedly dwells in her mind on her
burning desires to see his hot body and to become very physical with him
(everything a mormon might think they can get away with without having to
"talk to the bishop" -- but still lusting mightily).Readers
get an emotional connection fix, an emotional intamacy fix, and at least a
little bit of a sexual fix from these books, instead of from their husbands.
That is pornographic and damaging, regardless of "how far" the
characters take their sexual desires.
@Heather Moor:Every claim you make in your comment about these novels is
absurd.My wife had me read one, Edenbrooke, and it is the
stereotypical romance novel, just dialing back on the sex. No sex scenes, but
thick sexual tension throughout and some chest-rubbing making out. The man is
mega-rich, which she digs because she can live in a gigantic mansion on an
enormous estate -- she loves the countryside. The man is a smoldering hunk.
She constantly explains how attracted she is to his hard, muscular bulging chest
and wants to lean into his warmth (which she does eventually do). She gets flush
as she daydreams of rubbing her hands all over his chest (which she does
eventually do, more than once). She spends the entire time getting weak in the
knees, breathless and blushing because he stands too close or says some fancy
words that make her angry yet turned on.It is unrealistic that LOVE
means a man who provides riches beyond measure on a fabulous countryside
landscape mansion, has bulging hard pecs, and constantly turns his wife on by
making her angry and embarrassed, because she sees his nobleness in his eyes.
To Heather Moor why even write a romance novel in the first place? all it is
doing is giving a woman a out let to compair her husband to another man an start
bringing in a wedge it to that marraige. what starts off with this leads to
other Romance novels are the equivlat to Porn for a woman. A woman does not need
the sight stiumlation like a man onthe the sturing of mental emotions to set the
train wreck in motion. These still have married women compairing their husbands
to the fictional males in your books and that I chalenge you to justify!
The romance novels I refer to in my article are wonderful stories about the
emotional relationships between a man and a woman. Beautiful character
development that does not "hold men to an unattainable standard." The
characters are skillfully drawn and true to life, and yes, that means flaws and
all. Regencies bring out the absurdity of society's judgement based on
wealth and appearance. So the clean Regency romance might be just what breaks
the old stigmas for "Dadof5sons". It's exactly what the characters
are fighting against, the objectifying, the labeling, and compartmentalizing.
You can ask any woman about what true romance/love is. They'll never say
it's about "looks" or "wealth" or "high and mighty
standards". It's about the emotional connection of feeling valued by
another human being and the to be yourself and be loved "despite" all of
the flaws that are part of the "natural man." There are no perfect
people in any of these novels. They are about the bond of love that binds a man
and woman together, which is a beautiful connection and can be God-like if
treasured and cultivated.
Romance Novels allowing women to hold men to a unattainable standard no real man
can ever attain. Just as bad as men looking at and objectifying women.
Carla Kelly Has written 20+ Regency Romance Novels. She has 2 RITA awards. Her
new book My Loving Vigil Keeping comes out on August 14 2012.
What you call regencies, I call historicals. I have been reading them for over
20 years and although I agree somewhat re the "explicits" in the story I
have read some of the best and if I come across something steamy, I return it.
I will look for the LDS authors' books.