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Jenna Black | Too Stupid To Live
Uncategorized / March 12, 2008

We’ve all “met” her in romance novels: the heroine who is Too Stupid to Live (or TSTL, for short). I read a novel recently that I really loved–except for one scene where the heroine had a TSTL moment. The book was good enough, and the TSTL moment came late enough, that I was able to forgive the author and still enjoy the book. I’ll even buy her next one. But how I wish I could have been her editor for just a few minutes and convinced her to change that one scene. Often, a heroine has TSTL moments because the author needs to get her into danger for plot reasons. Perfectly understandable, particularly in suspense plots. But I think most of us as readers prefer the heroine to get into danger for reasons beyond her control. We want to think that she is too smart to make any of these kinds of mistakes–even though we know that even the smartest people do occasionally make mistakes. There is, however, one character whom I greatly enjoy who has constant TSTL moments. If you’ve read any of the Stephanie Plum books, you know that she’s often having battles between “Smart Stephanie” and “Stupid…