The Allure of the Impossible Romantic Interest

elizabeth bennetAs is most often the case in a romance novel, one or both main characters is considered an impossible catch. Hero or heroine, this particular lead is often regarded as the cream of the crop, the tip of the top, and the best of the best. He’s the most eligible bachelor. She’s the rarest diamond of the first waters. And so forth.

Why is this? I believe it is because the allure of catching an “impossible catch” is too great to pass up. The impossible catch is a huge draw for readers, myself included. The best books walk the fine line between impossible and actual, and your heart quickens with the leads as they fall in love.

Generally speaking, if the impossible catch is the hero, he doesn’t want to be caught. In fact, he strives vigorously to avoid any situation that might end with him at the altar. When he’s caught though, it’s what he most desires and that is very sexy.

If the impossible catch is the heroine, she generally has multiple options of marriage. She’s the belle of the ball. Her hero is not a good match for her economically speaking, but she doesn’t care… it’s his heart that matters most!

Some of my favorite “impossible catches” include Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice, Edward Cullen from Twilight, Mr. Edward Rochester and Jane Eyre from Jane Eyre, Mark Darcy from Bridget Jones, Justin Allistair of These Old Shades, and Sidonie Forsythe from Seven Nights in a Rogue’s Bed.

Who are some of your favorite impossible-to-catch heroes and heroines?

Make Me a Match!

A WEDDING IN SPRINGTIMEGuest Blog by Amanda Forester, author of A Wedding in Springtime

Finding the perfect match is difficult no matter what time period you happen to find yourself. While the idea of a matchmaker may sound foreign to modern day readers, many of us use a modern day equivalent – the online dating site! In these online dating sites you enter in a variety of information about yourself and then you are given options of potential partners who would theoretically be a good match. You can also go “shopping”, so to speak, by putting in the type person you think you might like, and see what options are available. Our modern matchmaker is a computer algorithm! Whether or not this is a winning formula for love is debatable, but more and more people are finding their romantic partners online.

During the Regency (1811-1820) computerized dating services were obviously not available, but this did not mean people did not turn to a third party to help find the perfect match. Bringing young people together was one of the important aspects of many of the Regency entertainments. As a young Regency miss, have no fear but that your mother, your aunts, and your cousins would all be plotting ways to get you to “accidentally” meet just the right man. The question wasn’t whether there were matchmakers in the Regency, but rather who wasn’t acting as a matchmaker in the Regency.

In A WEDDING IN SPRINGTIME, Penelope Rose has helped to find successful matches for her four sisters. Taking the matchmaking one step further, she has developed a book (an annotated copy of Debrett’s “Peerage of England”) listing potential husbands and their relative attributes and limitations. Pen is not one to leave something as important as marriage to chance.

Using her skills at matchmaking, she attempts to arrange a marriage for beautiful Eugenia Talbot, whose natural vivaciousness was not well received by the queen. On the edge of social ruin, Genie needs to find a husband – and quick! So Penelope using her skills to connect Genie with eligible marriage partners, and keep her away from notorious rake William Grant. Unfortunately for Penelope her plan goes horribly wrong, yet through a series of circumstances involving a Napoleonic spy and a street urchin, it all comes right in the end.

Despite everyone’s better judgment, Genie Talbot and William Grant find true love in A WEDDING IN SPRINGTIME. But will is ever be the matchmaker’s turn? Fortunately, more books and opportunities for matchmaking will arise for Penelope as the Marriage Mart series continues with A MIDSUMMER BRIDE (Nov. 2013) and WINTER WEDDING (Sept. 2014).

I hope you have as much fun reading A WEDDING IN SPRINGTIME as I had writing it! I love to hear from readers so come visit me at my website, facebook, or twitter.

So how did you meet your match (or are trying to meet your perfect match!). Did you turn to any “matchmakers” online or otherwise?

Buy: A Wedding in Springtime

Review: Willoughby’s Return by Jane Odiwe

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by Isabel G., guest reviewer

Marianne is one of the main characters of the story. She’s married to Colonel William Brandon, and although it is a seemingly perfect match, she becomes more insecure about their marriage. These feelings are tested when her old beau, and first love, Willoughby returns to town. Marianne learns that she still has strong feelings for Willoughby despite her attempts at denial. The fact that her husband is absent for long periods of time to aid another woman and her child does little to stifle her doubts.

Colonel Brandon is torn between duties to his own family and his duties of office. He goes to aid the child Willoughby abandoned, Lizzy, feeling it’s his responsibility to take care of her. However, one of Brandon’s trips drags out longer than any other and a letter he sends Marianne raises even more doubts in her mind. Of course, Willoughby is there to comfort her in her “time of need.” Yak! Can someone put up a stop sign?! What kind of woman would be turned on by a man who has abandoned his own child? Although the attraction and tension between Willoughby and Marianne worked for the plot, I couldn’t get past the idea. I don’t consider Willoughby a man for leaving his child and her mother behind to fend for themselves.

Marianne’s sister, Margaret, is a young lady with high expectations for a husband. She’s more concerned in being truly attracted and captivated by a suitor then with his wealth. Just as she begins to think there is no one who can capture her interest, Henry enters her life. He proves that looks can be deceiving when he begins to shower another young lady with his attention. However, the outcome is not what everyone expects.

Liked: The torn feelings some characters have towards each other. The book is also an easy read.

Disliked: In my opinion, the style of writing and some commentary does not fit the time period. It throws you out of the book at certain parts because it seems casual and modern. It also turned me off that Marianne gave in and was unfaithful in any way. What made it worse is that the attraction was to a man who had abandoned his own child.

If you ever found the idea of having two people interested in you flattering then, this book is for you.

Rating: ★★★½☆

Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
ISBN 978-1-4022-2267-2
Copyright 2009
Genre: Historical Romance
Pages: 345

Buy: Willoughby’s Return