Hey everyone! So, today, I want to share my thoughts on tropes, and get your thoughts on tropes! Which ones are AWESOME and which ones need to die? I think that so much of what I love and what I hate are influenced by my own personal experiences and fears. Why I hate something is usually directly tied to something in my own personality that I have always had a fear of happening. What I love I tend to love because its idealistic and ‘fairytale’ like, where you know everything will end well and everyone will be happy.
Tropes I love
Well, I should mention that on some of these, I am totally in the minority. So, lets start there….
Insta-Love/Fated Mates: Yep. I said it. I love insta-love. I will include this caveat though: there has to be a story with it. For example, I read an insta-love story where the characters were so idiotic I couldn’t buy it. I love insta-love when it is questioned by the characters. When they admit to themselves there is a pull, but also recognize the insanity of it. That makes for a good story! I think it works better in the PNR genre because as a reader, you are more apt to accept the idea because of magic. Whatever the reason, when its well written, it is probably my favorite trope! My favorites in this trope: Shielding Lily by Alexa Riley, The Hurricane by RJ Prescott (also a bit of secret identity and damsel in distress!), Significance by Shelly Crane
Best Friend’s sibling: So, I have brothers, and I have never been attracted to any of their friends. This trope totally eludes me, but I love it!! I think some of it is due to the fact I used to tease my best friend mercilessly about how attractive her brother was. She would get so uncomfortable! So, in reality, I don’t get this trope at all, but in books? I think its great! My favorite: The Boy who Sneaks in my Bedroom Window by Kristy Mosely, The Consequence of Loving Colton by Rachel Van Dyken
Military/Law Enforcement: I think because this trope almost always adds some suspense, its my favorite. There are so many different ways for an author to take this trope (PTSD, protector, hunting a killer, etc). I think this is probably the one trope I won’t ever tire of because it can be taken in so many different directions. My favorites in this trope: Bleeding Love by Harper Sloan, At Any Cost by Mandy Baxter
Damsel in Distress: Yep, here is another one that I think I am in the minority…I think that this trope gets a bad rap because it someone implies that the woman is incapable of handling her own shit. But, I don’t think that is the case. Anyone can use some support sometimes! To me, needing help doesn’t make the heroine inept and moronic. And, yes, okay, I love Disney. All those old Disney movies I grew up on were damsel in distress tropes! Did I think any of the Disney princess were idiots who couldn’t handle their own shit? No! But it was nice to see someone who cared enough to help them. My favorites in this trope: The King series by TM Frazier
Secret Identity: I love when a character doesn’t recognize another. Maybe they don’t watch sports and don’t know that the hero is a famous player. Maybe the heroine is a rockstar who isn’t recognized. Maybe the heroine is simply hiding under a different name on the run from her past. Perhaps the hero is a shifter and the heroine has no idea! Whatever it is, I love when the identity of a character is known by the reader, but not by one or more of the other characters. My favorites in this trope: My Commander by Alanea Alder, Emphatic by Kaylee Ryan,
Tropes I loathe
Love Triangle: Seriously, nothing pisses me off more than this. Its just used to create unnecessary drama. I prefer the tension in a story to be outside of the main couple. Anytime a book is built on the will they/won’t they drama only, I get irritated and give up quickly. Love triangles thrive on this. Who will she choose? What will she do? I can’t stand that. First, I feel bad for the person who gets left behind. Second, if I were in the situation, I would never be able to trust my significant other because I would always wonder if they would change their mine. I have major trust issues in case that isn’t obvious! The book that made me hate this trope: Taking Chances by Molly McAdams (seriously, I am still pissed about that book!)
Teacher/Student: Ok, I am a teacher and this isn’t a trope, its a CRIME! There are some seriously popular authors and books that include a high school student falling for his/her teacher! WTH people?!? I get it-a senior in HS is 18 and a first year teacher might only be 21 and that doesn’t seem like a big age gap (and it isn’t). Its not about that. Its about the professional issue created. A teacher cannot be involved with a student in their charge because its wrong, and it puts children at risk. Period. Its not okay. I get very upset when authors try to make it okay. I have worked in a school where a high school teacher was having an affair with a student. She was just out of college, he was a senior. It was exactly like these books. But, it wasn’t okay. She is in prison now and the rest of his high school experience was destroyed by the affair and the implications and gossip and drama that followed.
Tropes I don’t hate but am really getting sick of
Step-siblings: I have read some great books with this trope; I have read some AWFUL books with this trope. Like anything, I think some authors did a great job with it and through no fault of their own, everyone has jumped on this wagon. Now the whole trope has just gotten a bit played out.
Manwhore: Seriously, for a while, it seemed like every book I read was about a hero who was a slutty, slutty man whore until he meets the heroine. Not my favorite trope to begin with, it got really old, really fast. I am thankful that it seems to appear less frequently in the books I have read lately. Or maybe I am just picking different books to avoid it? My favorite from this trope: #Nerd by Cambria Hebert