Ten Reasons Why Women Love Romance Novels

by Keira G on February 28, 2011 · 18 comments

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5 Reasons why the unenlightened think we love romance novels:

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10. We're bored and have nothing better to do. This explains why a good portion of us read in lines, just before the lights go off in a theater, between meetings, before class, and during our commute... because we have time to spare.

09. We don't have to think when we read romance! Great! Let's leave our brains at home because everybody knows romance novels are right up there with gossip, soap operas, and fashion and celebrity magazines.

08. Secretly, we love the trashy cover art. Clinches and clutches and heaving bosoms really appeal to us. Who doesn't love toting embarrassingly bulging mantitty in her purse?

07. We love romance because it's petticoat porn. (What and men don't like watching poorly filmed flicks off the internet? At least ours is intellectual- it's literature!)

06. Better yet, on top of loving it for porn we also love it because we have no sex life. This is our only way to experience sex... ie vicariously through fictional characters. Right... as if any woman couldn't go into any bar and ask any man if he wanted to go home with her and he wouldn't say yes.

Now for 5 real reasons to love romance novels:

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05. Truly, we love romance because it's emotional porn. Two hanky reads anyone? Passes out tissues.

04. Happily Ever Afters. We love a great ending and knowing that no matter how many troubles and problems seem to mount up eventually they're solved and go away.

03. Variety. There's a romance out there for everyone. Many of us develop preferences and seek out stories that cater to them.

02. The heroine. She's everything we want to be or admire in others with the exception of the Too Stupid to Live Heroines.

And the number one reason women love romance novels is:

01. The hero... because we can fall a little bit in love with him every time we open a book to read.

Photo Credits: left-hand, jonrawlinson

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Meghan May 12, 2009 at 9:28 AM

Wonderful post! It’s true, too. I think many who read romance are in committed relationships, but even though I have a constant crush on my fiance, romance novels are a completely harmless way to experience that thrill of new love again.

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2 Keira May 12, 2009 at 9:32 AM

Ooo I agree comepletely! Additionally that should totally be a bonus reason: Experience New Love Over and Over Again!

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3 Amy May 12, 2009 at 3:07 PM

Seriously, who wants to be depressed over and over again by the pick of the month in Oprah’s bookclub? Is she even doing that anymore?

Even better — I read romance because I LOVE romance. I love the chase, the falling in love, the getting past imperfections and finding the true heart of that someone special. And, yeah, I’m even happily in love!

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4 Keira May 13, 2009 at 7:53 AM

I know I don’t! I much prefer my reading over Oprahs.

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5 Carolyn Brown September 16, 2009 at 7:46 AM

Hi y’all!
I’m printing these reasons and hanging them above my computer to read while I write those romances you all love to read. I’m also putting them into the blog space on my website today! It’s a GREAT blog! Thanks for the post!
Carolyn Brown

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6 Isabel Roman February 18, 2010 at 1:40 PM

I agree with Amy. I find Oprah’s selections (as well as ‘literar’ winners) depressing and rather long what with all the repetitiveness crammed into them. 1000 pages of the same thing? I can read a 3 story series with more variety and better characters.

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7 Troy Lyn April 13, 2010 at 8:52 PM

This is shit. Romance novels are unrealistic in so many ways, and all fall into the same stereotypes.

1. Twilight: A guy that’s supposed to be perfect has NEVER been with anyone but falls for some random highschool chick because he can’t read her thoughts? Then when he dumps her he goes “J/k” and she goes right back to him? Bull.

2. The Notebook – Girl leaves her fucking FIANCE’ for some kid she hooked up with in 8th grade? What a slut. Why would she agree to marry someone if she’s going to leave him that easy?

Also, lol at the number 7. Answer. “Our’s is ok cuz it’s books hur hur”. Seriously? Are you that stupid? Just because it’s written word doesn’t make you superior in any way. There is PLENTY of literary porn for guys and girls out there. Also, in regards to the implications by the no. 7 answer originally posted, this is an example of the double standard stereotype that plagues romance stories.

Reply to answer 2 that was posted. So you wanna be like the heroines in the books? Do shit like leave your fiance’s for jr. high hook ups? Being shallow in every way? Only going for the hot guy? Damn, now THAT’S something to aspire to!

I could keep going, but I got bored. If you give this post negative feedback it’s only because you’re insecure from your novels and know I speak the truth. Have at it.

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8 Keira April 13, 2010 at 11:00 PM

My only question for you Troy as you obviously don’t like romance novels is what on earth were you searching for on google to get you this site?

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9 Jon July 8, 2010 at 4:52 AM

It’s emotional porn, yes, thanks for that honesty and concession.

I have no problem with your emotional porn, and hopefully you have no problem with my “real” porn.

I don’t expect you to live up to porn (it’s fantasy) and I hope that you don’t expect me to live up to the romance novel. I am not Fabio.

Anyone who feels threatened by romance novels is insecure. Anyone who feels threatened by real porn (within reason) is insecure. It’s impossible to be in a relationship without fantasising about others (even strangers walking down the street), but it’s not cheating it’s harmless. It doesn’t mean you want to leave your partner for that person. Recognising that is where the “security and self esteem” comes in. So that you are not threatened.

Both are a harmless indulgence, it doesn’t mean you want to leave your partner and marry Fabio or Jenna Jameson.

These are my feelings on the subject. I think it can become dangerous though, when either side forgets that it’s fantasy and doesn’t exist in the real world. That’s why it’s good to indulge specifically for that reason, that it doesn’t exist in the real world.

What frustrates me is that the stigma for porn is alot higher then romance novels. However I don’t think that’s an issue with you guys here on this site, since you seem to be more honest about it. Emotional porn, as you conceeded. I appreciate the honesty.

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10 Kris October 31, 2012 at 5:42 AM

All it means is that You are not in love but pretending to be. Should your partner loose his job… The elephant in the room…Fantasy is an escape and if you need to escape then have the guts to do the real thing… living a double life is such an accepted way to live…no wonder Prozac sell billions of pills….

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11 Michael Stewart August 9, 2010 at 11:17 AM

I use to read my mother Romance Novels and it is like a cheat sheet on what types of things women consider romantic. When you ask men for advice on women they say all they want is money when you ask a woman she says she wants someone who is Romantic, loving, caring and a great conversationalist. I think men should read Romance novels so they can fulfill their ladies fantasies. if her man does what the hero does in the stories she would put the book down and give him more time. To be honest I do not care for Pornography. Everything is fake, There is no meaning behind it. I get more out of reading the Story of Orpheus and Eurydices, A man going to hell and back for his lover. the Odysee where a man sails around the mediterranean to get back to his beloved wife. Like Sir launcelot rescuing Elaine and they fall in love and get married. I would love to rescue a fair maiden from her dragon called loneliness and just ride away with her to a land far far away and live with her happily ever after

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12 Ronald Millsaps March 10, 2011 at 8:40 PM

I’m actually writing a romance novel, but it’s wholesome. The aforementioned kind is not in any way edifying————–and the flippant, irreverent nature of the essay (and supporting comments) is infuriating as well as just plain annoying.

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13 CMA August 6, 2011 at 4:23 AM

I completely agree with Ronald.

There is a distinct difference between romance books, and the cheesy counterparts of erotica. I read romance novels for the emotional roller coaster, I like to weep, feel pain for the characters and feeling happy at the end with all the loose ends tied up. Best example and my favourite book is Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. Which, I would like to point out, was written under a male pseudonym at the time and was frequently read and praised by men.

I resent that most people here are labeling all romance novels the same. Even more so that men are quick to compare romance novels with pornography. It is not the same at all. I believe most people on this site are referring to erotica disguised as literature.

Also before Troy and Jon begin high-fiving each other believing that they have found an ‘acceptable’ excuse to watch pornography because their partners read romance novels. Perhaps you should understand more about the different types of romance novels before you lump them altogether in your ignorance.

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14 CMA August 6, 2011 at 4:28 AM

Also, @Michael Stewart, you can rescue this fair maiden if you wish. ;)

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15 bilal hussain September 28, 2012 at 2:59 AM

all reasons are very genuine.You bring up several interesting views that got me thinking.You bring up several interesting views that got me thinking.

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16 Carletta Wellman October 2, 2012 at 11:00 AM

Perhaps the reason men aren’t interested in romance novels is because many of them are written from a female perspective. Most men likely don’t want a detailed description of a penetration from the receiving end. But why hasn’t a genre of male-perspective romance novels arisen to fill the gap?

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17 Nada May 23, 2013 at 12:24 AM

What a waste of time.Why don’t women spend extra time reading non-fiction such as about economics,science,politics.Spend time gaining knowledge instead of day dreaming about some fantasy man.

Learn something.

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