So naturally now that I’m all grown up, I read and write romance novels. I love being transported to another place, whether it’s Regency England or the coast of Maine. I love when the deserving heroine gets her shot at the ball. I love it when the handsome prince (or vampire lord or Texas billionaire) puts love for the heroine above everything else. I really love the happy endings.
But thinking back on those stories, the other thing that strikes me is how ordinary the most of the characters are. The woodcutter’s son, the merchant’s daughter, the fisherman with the nagging wife, the soldier returning from war. Even the princes and princesses are taken up with the real life concern of getting married to an appropriate partner and producing heirs.
The tales of the selkie–mythical creatures who shed their seal skins and come ashore as beautiful men and women to have hot, anonymous sex with human partners—come from a time when people lived very close to their environment. In the ballads and stories, you can feel the characters’ longing: the lonely sailor, the woman who loses her love to the sea, the farmer searching for a wife beyond the local girls he knows, the unmarried village girl who can’t or won’t name the father of her baby. There’s a palpable, poignant conflict between their day-to-day experience and their yearning for something more.
That is certainly the case with ordinary Lucy Hunter, the heroine of SEA LORD.
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