Hi! I’m Christie Ridgway, the author of Unravel Me, a sexy contemporary romance (find info and an excerpt at www.christieridgway.com) and tireless reader of romance novels. I was reading a delicious historical last week and in it the hero and heroine were forced by rain to seek a room at an inn. Guess just how many rooms were available?
You know, right? It was one. Just the one room which forced these two who are battling their attraction into even closer proximity. Sure it was a convenient tool for the author. A contrivance. At best we could say it was a coincidence that the stars of the book just happened upon this particular inn that only had a single room to rent. But I didn’t care! As a lover of romance novels, I understand that every turn of fortune like this serves to make the tension tighter, the characters’ emotions more turbulent, the reader-enjoyment just that much deeper. One room at the inn, I read, and then I smiled to myself and wiggled into my comfy chair, prepared to be entertained by what all that means.
It’s not so different from a football game, I’m realizing (I say this as the um, proud owner of a new big screen TV which apparently is dedicated solely to that sport, according to my husband and two sons). You know one guy is going to throw the ball or another is going to run with it and lots of guys are going to fall down. When you think about it, that’s just as predictable as any convenience, contrivance, or coincidence you read in a romance novel. But it’s the process that makes each game different, the testosterone in my house will tell me. And I get that, because it’s the how our hero and heroine get to their happy ending that is just as interesting to me as the how those two hours of football time play out for the men who share my world.
So I’m no longer shaking my head over the couch time spent by my husband and sons on this year’s football season. I think I’m getting it now. A first down is a first kiss. A tackle is that tango on the dance floor. Fourth and goal is that one room available at the inn. Each moment toward the end line (whether in football or a romance novel) is part of the pleasure of the experience. This Thanksgiving weekend, when the guys are gathered around those 65 flat inches of screen, I’ll be snuggled nearby with my current read, enjoying our parallel (though they would never believe it!) experiences.
And if you need something to read during those long hours of football, I hope you’ll check out Unravel Me. Set in Malibu, California, a lovely widow rebuilds her life and finds romance with the help of a studly younger man. They don’t share a single room at an inn, but they do share some steamy moments in a shower and then move on to discover a deep and satisfying love.