Another Dead Hero

Cat_243_dover by Mary Jo

I knew I was in trouble when the second book of my Bride trilogy started with the hero dead, and the third began with the heroine dead.

Now this is genre romance, so I told alarmed readers to trust me if they were worrying about the story.  With plotting sleight of hand, and maybe communications difficulties in the past, things aren’t always what they seem.  So I guaranteed there’d be a happy ending.

But the fact that I was driven to such extremes of plotting on The China Bride and The Bartered Bride did suggest to me that I was in danger of burn-out in straight historical romance, and that had a lot to do with my shift to fantasy historicals for several years.

Barteredbridecover_2 Death as a plotting device has a lot of merit because it raises the stakes for the reader.  The story literally becomes a matter of life and death.  Lots and lots of writers do it, and Shakespeare is solidly in that pack.  Humans are hardwired to react powerful to the threat of danger.  Heck, even people who don’t like children will react instantly when a child is threatened.  (In contrast, humor is much more individual, which is why writing comedy is harder than melodrama.)

I probably torture my characters more than most romance writers.  The hero of my first Signet Regency was a wounded Waterloo veteran (The Diabolical Baron), and the hero of the second book was a friend of his, dying of wounds and opium addiction in a military hospital when we first meet him.  (The Would-Be Widow, later rewritten as The Bargain.)  Really, it is no fun being one of my heroes, and the heroines often have a rough time of it, too!

One_perfect_rose The list goes on—One Perfect Rose is a genuine death-and-dying romance, which deals with the denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance that are the commonly accepted stages of grief and reaction to trauma in general.  People who might never read Elisabeth Kűbler-Ross’s On Death and Dying could read that book and learn something about dealing with death—and yes, One Perfect Rose has a happy ending. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elisabeth_kubler_ross )

Danger and death are a staple of storytelling, of course.  Happy people usually aren’t as interesting to observe. <g>  And it isn’t just fiction—look at the cheery field reporters on the Weather Channel, who practically jump up and down with glee when a hurricane is coming, or better yet, blowing their hats off. 

Of course, being a high minded sort, I like to think there are good reasons for torturing my heroes.  Most of my books are set in upper class Britain during the Regency period, and having money and power in any era can warp one’s perspective and create a vast and irritating sense of entitlement.  In addition, the often brutal private schools of the time (perversely called public schools) could definitely harden a boy to the point where he had minimal empathy for others. 

It other words, such guys weren’t likely to be good husband material in the real world.  So I often give them experiences of pain and loss to make them more sympathetic to those who are less fortunate.  I’m not sure the average reader cares about this, but I do.  I need to believe that the characters are capable of forming a committed love relationship.

China_bridemm300_dpi This also means they can’t be too wounded, either.  I’ve read books where characters have suffered so much abuse and pain that it’s hard to believe that they can ever become healthy romantic partners.  Luckily, studies have found that even kids with a truly terrible backgrounds have a reasonable chance of a healthy adulthood if at some point, an adult took a positive interest in them. 

It doesn’t even have to be for a long time, as long as there is at least one patch of sunlight in a dark world.  So even my most stressed characters probably had a mentor, an aunt, a sea captain, or whatever who offered them affection and hope for a better life.  Hence the power of Big Brother and Big Sister organizations, among others. 

But I digress.  (No regular reader of WordWenches will be surprised by this. <g>) 

How do you feel about life and death drama in your reading?  It’s common in all genres, and mysteries and thrillers are basically all about life and death dramas.  Have you read books when characters seemed too wounded?  Too improbably understanding?  What works for you in making characters and relationships believable?

And have you ever seen a character come back from the dead and wished that he’d stayed dead?!!

Mary Jo, who is writing a straight Regency historical now—and it starts off with the hero dead. <g>

55 thoughts on “Another Dead Hero”

  1. If there is too much torment between the hero and heroine, I don’t buy the reconciliation and happy ending. For instance, some Stephanie Laurens and Julie Garwood have too much meanness. However, if the couple overcomes odds of the past inflicted by others or circumstances, I believe it. The whole release of romance is finding a force that conquers all!

    Reply
  2. If there is too much torment between the hero and heroine, I don’t buy the reconciliation and happy ending. For instance, some Stephanie Laurens and Julie Garwood have too much meanness. However, if the couple overcomes odds of the past inflicted by others or circumstances, I believe it. The whole release of romance is finding a force that conquers all!

    Reply
  3. If there is too much torment between the hero and heroine, I don’t buy the reconciliation and happy ending. For instance, some Stephanie Laurens and Julie Garwood have too much meanness. However, if the couple overcomes odds of the past inflicted by others or circumstances, I believe it. The whole release of romance is finding a force that conquers all!

    Reply
  4. If there is too much torment between the hero and heroine, I don’t buy the reconciliation and happy ending. For instance, some Stephanie Laurens and Julie Garwood have too much meanness. However, if the couple overcomes odds of the past inflicted by others or circumstances, I believe it. The whole release of romance is finding a force that conquers all!

    Reply
  5. If there is too much torment between the hero and heroine, I don’t buy the reconciliation and happy ending. For instance, some Stephanie Laurens and Julie Garwood have too much meanness. However, if the couple overcomes odds of the past inflicted by others or circumstances, I believe it. The whole release of romance is finding a force that conquers all!

    Reply
  6. I don’t mind wounded people – they’re more interesting. But then I’m not particularly worried if at the end of the book they still have a way to go. The “patch of sunlight” theory goes both ways. If we see then the light at the end of the tunnel, then I can imagine the future happiness from there.

    Reply
  7. I don’t mind wounded people – they’re more interesting. But then I’m not particularly worried if at the end of the book they still have a way to go. The “patch of sunlight” theory goes both ways. If we see then the light at the end of the tunnel, then I can imagine the future happiness from there.

    Reply
  8. I don’t mind wounded people – they’re more interesting. But then I’m not particularly worried if at the end of the book they still have a way to go. The “patch of sunlight” theory goes both ways. If we see then the light at the end of the tunnel, then I can imagine the future happiness from there.

    Reply
  9. I don’t mind wounded people – they’re more interesting. But then I’m not particularly worried if at the end of the book they still have a way to go. The “patch of sunlight” theory goes both ways. If we see then the light at the end of the tunnel, then I can imagine the future happiness from there.

    Reply
  10. I don’t mind wounded people – they’re more interesting. But then I’m not particularly worried if at the end of the book they still have a way to go. The “patch of sunlight” theory goes both ways. If we see then the light at the end of the tunnel, then I can imagine the future happiness from there.

    Reply
  11. My memory was jogged by this post, Mary Jo. When I was very young, I must have seen a movie or read a book where the long-thought-dead husband comes back to his wife, who has already remarried. This trope just kills me. Everybody is a loser.
    And I’ve experienced a version of it myself, LOL. On the night I got engaged my senior year of college (and no, I never married the guy), my old boyfriend tapped on my bedroom window wanting to get back together.I never married him either! That night I was a tortured heroine.
    I think properly handled, wounded, tortured heroes—even dead ones—can be brought back to life by the love of a good woman.

    Reply
  12. My memory was jogged by this post, Mary Jo. When I was very young, I must have seen a movie or read a book where the long-thought-dead husband comes back to his wife, who has already remarried. This trope just kills me. Everybody is a loser.
    And I’ve experienced a version of it myself, LOL. On the night I got engaged my senior year of college (and no, I never married the guy), my old boyfriend tapped on my bedroom window wanting to get back together.I never married him either! That night I was a tortured heroine.
    I think properly handled, wounded, tortured heroes—even dead ones—can be brought back to life by the love of a good woman.

    Reply
  13. My memory was jogged by this post, Mary Jo. When I was very young, I must have seen a movie or read a book where the long-thought-dead husband comes back to his wife, who has already remarried. This trope just kills me. Everybody is a loser.
    And I’ve experienced a version of it myself, LOL. On the night I got engaged my senior year of college (and no, I never married the guy), my old boyfriend tapped on my bedroom window wanting to get back together.I never married him either! That night I was a tortured heroine.
    I think properly handled, wounded, tortured heroes—even dead ones—can be brought back to life by the love of a good woman.

    Reply
  14. My memory was jogged by this post, Mary Jo. When I was very young, I must have seen a movie or read a book where the long-thought-dead husband comes back to his wife, who has already remarried. This trope just kills me. Everybody is a loser.
    And I’ve experienced a version of it myself, LOL. On the night I got engaged my senior year of college (and no, I never married the guy), my old boyfriend tapped on my bedroom window wanting to get back together.I never married him either! That night I was a tortured heroine.
    I think properly handled, wounded, tortured heroes—even dead ones—can be brought back to life by the love of a good woman.

    Reply
  15. My memory was jogged by this post, Mary Jo. When I was very young, I must have seen a movie or read a book where the long-thought-dead husband comes back to his wife, who has already remarried. This trope just kills me. Everybody is a loser.
    And I’ve experienced a version of it myself, LOL. On the night I got engaged my senior year of college (and no, I never married the guy), my old boyfriend tapped on my bedroom window wanting to get back together.I never married him either! That night I was a tortured heroine.
    I think properly handled, wounded, tortured heroes—even dead ones—can be brought back to life by the love of a good woman.

    Reply
  16. It depends on how many tortured hero’s I’ve read in a row. Sometimes I get burnt out on all the tortured and really want something I can laugh about.

    Reply
  17. It depends on how many tortured hero’s I’ve read in a row. Sometimes I get burnt out on all the tortured and really want something I can laugh about.

    Reply
  18. It depends on how many tortured hero’s I’ve read in a row. Sometimes I get burnt out on all the tortured and really want something I can laugh about.

    Reply
  19. It depends on how many tortured hero’s I’ve read in a row. Sometimes I get burnt out on all the tortured and really want something I can laugh about.

    Reply
  20. It depends on how many tortured hero’s I’ve read in a row. Sometimes I get burnt out on all the tortured and really want something I can laugh about.

    Reply
  21. I read One Perfect Rose at a rather tense time in my life, and despite knowing it was absolutely GUARENTEED to have a happy ending, I still had to read ahead and make sure. It was the only way I could enjoy the book.
    My least favorite kind of book is one that seemed ubiquitous when I was a teen reader – the series about a kid growing up, usually collections of cheerful anecdotes with lighthearted titles, that end up with the kid dying. Almost invariably of Leukemia. What the hell was up with that? Who thought that was a good idea?

    Reply
  22. I read One Perfect Rose at a rather tense time in my life, and despite knowing it was absolutely GUARENTEED to have a happy ending, I still had to read ahead and make sure. It was the only way I could enjoy the book.
    My least favorite kind of book is one that seemed ubiquitous when I was a teen reader – the series about a kid growing up, usually collections of cheerful anecdotes with lighthearted titles, that end up with the kid dying. Almost invariably of Leukemia. What the hell was up with that? Who thought that was a good idea?

    Reply
  23. I read One Perfect Rose at a rather tense time in my life, and despite knowing it was absolutely GUARENTEED to have a happy ending, I still had to read ahead and make sure. It was the only way I could enjoy the book.
    My least favorite kind of book is one that seemed ubiquitous when I was a teen reader – the series about a kid growing up, usually collections of cheerful anecdotes with lighthearted titles, that end up with the kid dying. Almost invariably of Leukemia. What the hell was up with that? Who thought that was a good idea?

    Reply
  24. I read One Perfect Rose at a rather tense time in my life, and despite knowing it was absolutely GUARENTEED to have a happy ending, I still had to read ahead and make sure. It was the only way I could enjoy the book.
    My least favorite kind of book is one that seemed ubiquitous when I was a teen reader – the series about a kid growing up, usually collections of cheerful anecdotes with lighthearted titles, that end up with the kid dying. Almost invariably of Leukemia. What the hell was up with that? Who thought that was a good idea?

    Reply
  25. I read One Perfect Rose at a rather tense time in my life, and despite knowing it was absolutely GUARENTEED to have a happy ending, I still had to read ahead and make sure. It was the only way I could enjoy the book.
    My least favorite kind of book is one that seemed ubiquitous when I was a teen reader – the series about a kid growing up, usually collections of cheerful anecdotes with lighthearted titles, that end up with the kid dying. Almost invariably of Leukemia. What the hell was up with that? Who thought that was a good idea?

    Reply
  26. From MJP:
    Maggie, there was a movie from the 40s or so that had a spouse returning from the dead. Come to think of it, there was another one where it was the wife coming back and upsetting her husband’s rebuilt apple cart.
    Like you, I’m not particularly fond of the triangle as a plot device since someone is going to end up hurt, maybe all of them. I remember that laVyrle Spencer did a lot of triangle books, so clearly it works for some people. I’m just not one of them. 🙂 I’m assuming that the man you ended up marrying was superior to either of the ones you didn’t marry?!
    Kay, you’re right–too many tortured heroes in a row (or any other character or story type) gets really tedious.
    Willaful, there have been a LOT of YA titles that deal with tough themes, including dying teenagers. I think it’s because a lot of teens haven’t seen real suffering, and they’re curious about it. So they’re interested in books that deal with hard themes. As for the leukemia–I suppose that was considered a way to die and still look good, though I have no idea if that’s true in reality. The idea may come from Ali McGraw dying so prettily in Love Story.
    Pat, your comment makes me think of something that I should have put in the original post. Traditional genre romance has that happy ending that readers have come to trust. But there are paranormal series being marketed to romance readers that do on indefinitely and may well have unhappy endings. Too many of those and we’ll all be looking at the ends of books before we dare by them!

    Reply
  27. From MJP:
    Maggie, there was a movie from the 40s or so that had a spouse returning from the dead. Come to think of it, there was another one where it was the wife coming back and upsetting her husband’s rebuilt apple cart.
    Like you, I’m not particularly fond of the triangle as a plot device since someone is going to end up hurt, maybe all of them. I remember that laVyrle Spencer did a lot of triangle books, so clearly it works for some people. I’m just not one of them. 🙂 I’m assuming that the man you ended up marrying was superior to either of the ones you didn’t marry?!
    Kay, you’re right–too many tortured heroes in a row (or any other character or story type) gets really tedious.
    Willaful, there have been a LOT of YA titles that deal with tough themes, including dying teenagers. I think it’s because a lot of teens haven’t seen real suffering, and they’re curious about it. So they’re interested in books that deal with hard themes. As for the leukemia–I suppose that was considered a way to die and still look good, though I have no idea if that’s true in reality. The idea may come from Ali McGraw dying so prettily in Love Story.
    Pat, your comment makes me think of something that I should have put in the original post. Traditional genre romance has that happy ending that readers have come to trust. But there are paranormal series being marketed to romance readers that do on indefinitely and may well have unhappy endings. Too many of those and we’ll all be looking at the ends of books before we dare by them!

    Reply
  28. From MJP:
    Maggie, there was a movie from the 40s or so that had a spouse returning from the dead. Come to think of it, there was another one where it was the wife coming back and upsetting her husband’s rebuilt apple cart.
    Like you, I’m not particularly fond of the triangle as a plot device since someone is going to end up hurt, maybe all of them. I remember that laVyrle Spencer did a lot of triangle books, so clearly it works for some people. I’m just not one of them. 🙂 I’m assuming that the man you ended up marrying was superior to either of the ones you didn’t marry?!
    Kay, you’re right–too many tortured heroes in a row (or any other character or story type) gets really tedious.
    Willaful, there have been a LOT of YA titles that deal with tough themes, including dying teenagers. I think it’s because a lot of teens haven’t seen real suffering, and they’re curious about it. So they’re interested in books that deal with hard themes. As for the leukemia–I suppose that was considered a way to die and still look good, though I have no idea if that’s true in reality. The idea may come from Ali McGraw dying so prettily in Love Story.
    Pat, your comment makes me think of something that I should have put in the original post. Traditional genre romance has that happy ending that readers have come to trust. But there are paranormal series being marketed to romance readers that do on indefinitely and may well have unhappy endings. Too many of those and we’ll all be looking at the ends of books before we dare by them!

    Reply
  29. From MJP:
    Maggie, there was a movie from the 40s or so that had a spouse returning from the dead. Come to think of it, there was another one where it was the wife coming back and upsetting her husband’s rebuilt apple cart.
    Like you, I’m not particularly fond of the triangle as a plot device since someone is going to end up hurt, maybe all of them. I remember that laVyrle Spencer did a lot of triangle books, so clearly it works for some people. I’m just not one of them. 🙂 I’m assuming that the man you ended up marrying was superior to either of the ones you didn’t marry?!
    Kay, you’re right–too many tortured heroes in a row (or any other character or story type) gets really tedious.
    Willaful, there have been a LOT of YA titles that deal with tough themes, including dying teenagers. I think it’s because a lot of teens haven’t seen real suffering, and they’re curious about it. So they’re interested in books that deal with hard themes. As for the leukemia–I suppose that was considered a way to die and still look good, though I have no idea if that’s true in reality. The idea may come from Ali McGraw dying so prettily in Love Story.
    Pat, your comment makes me think of something that I should have put in the original post. Traditional genre romance has that happy ending that readers have come to trust. But there are paranormal series being marketed to romance readers that do on indefinitely and may well have unhappy endings. Too many of those and we’ll all be looking at the ends of books before we dare by them!

    Reply
  30. From MJP:
    Maggie, there was a movie from the 40s or so that had a spouse returning from the dead. Come to think of it, there was another one where it was the wife coming back and upsetting her husband’s rebuilt apple cart.
    Like you, I’m not particularly fond of the triangle as a plot device since someone is going to end up hurt, maybe all of them. I remember that laVyrle Spencer did a lot of triangle books, so clearly it works for some people. I’m just not one of them. 🙂 I’m assuming that the man you ended up marrying was superior to either of the ones you didn’t marry?!
    Kay, you’re right–too many tortured heroes in a row (or any other character or story type) gets really tedious.
    Willaful, there have been a LOT of YA titles that deal with tough themes, including dying teenagers. I think it’s because a lot of teens haven’t seen real suffering, and they’re curious about it. So they’re interested in books that deal with hard themes. As for the leukemia–I suppose that was considered a way to die and still look good, though I have no idea if that’s true in reality. The idea may come from Ali McGraw dying so prettily in Love Story.
    Pat, your comment makes me think of something that I should have put in the original post. Traditional genre romance has that happy ending that readers have come to trust. But there are paranormal series being marketed to romance readers that do on indefinitely and may well have unhappy endings. Too many of those and we’ll all be looking at the ends of books before we dare by them!

    Reply
  31. I kind of like the the tortured story line. My favorite book of yours is still One Perfect Rose. It was the first book of yours I ever read, and at the time my husband had cancer and was going through treatment, so it really spoke to me. It also made me go out and read all your books.
    Tracey

    Reply
  32. I kind of like the the tortured story line. My favorite book of yours is still One Perfect Rose. It was the first book of yours I ever read, and at the time my husband had cancer and was going through treatment, so it really spoke to me. It also made me go out and read all your books.
    Tracey

    Reply
  33. I kind of like the the tortured story line. My favorite book of yours is still One Perfect Rose. It was the first book of yours I ever read, and at the time my husband had cancer and was going through treatment, so it really spoke to me. It also made me go out and read all your books.
    Tracey

    Reply
  34. I kind of like the the tortured story line. My favorite book of yours is still One Perfect Rose. It was the first book of yours I ever read, and at the time my husband had cancer and was going through treatment, so it really spoke to me. It also made me go out and read all your books.
    Tracey

    Reply
  35. I kind of like the the tortured story line. My favorite book of yours is still One Perfect Rose. It was the first book of yours I ever read, and at the time my husband had cancer and was going through treatment, so it really spoke to me. It also made me go out and read all your books.
    Tracey

    Reply
  36. Speaking as someone who has not only read, but *kept* and re-read all your books, I think that the way you implement and work through darkness in your stories is the greatest strength of your writing. It’s more than just a trope and it becomes an actual tangible experience that the hero or heroine has to work through. When reading romance novels, I don’t ever get bothered by heroes or heroines being ‘too damaged’ to be able to function in a relationship; but I do get bothered by quick fixes for trauma and by pat solutions. Often an author will invoke the trope of the war-torn hero or the abuse-survivor heroine, but then these issues will be overcome too easily (often within one sex scene or one therapeutic conversation). What I liked about _Petals in the Storm_, for example, was the fact that it dealt with rape in a believable way. It illustrated the fact that rape-survivors need more than just one good lay to work through their traumatic history. Yes, I like the tortured plotline, both for heroes and heroines – it’s what makes the characters human instead of cardboard. But if one’s going to write the tortured plotline, then it’s got to be done right. And yes, when life and death are at stake, it does require a lot of trust in the author that we’ll get to our HEA somehow; but that’s the fun part – not knowing how the heck we’ll get to that HEA!

    Reply
  37. Speaking as someone who has not only read, but *kept* and re-read all your books, I think that the way you implement and work through darkness in your stories is the greatest strength of your writing. It’s more than just a trope and it becomes an actual tangible experience that the hero or heroine has to work through. When reading romance novels, I don’t ever get bothered by heroes or heroines being ‘too damaged’ to be able to function in a relationship; but I do get bothered by quick fixes for trauma and by pat solutions. Often an author will invoke the trope of the war-torn hero or the abuse-survivor heroine, but then these issues will be overcome too easily (often within one sex scene or one therapeutic conversation). What I liked about _Petals in the Storm_, for example, was the fact that it dealt with rape in a believable way. It illustrated the fact that rape-survivors need more than just one good lay to work through their traumatic history. Yes, I like the tortured plotline, both for heroes and heroines – it’s what makes the characters human instead of cardboard. But if one’s going to write the tortured plotline, then it’s got to be done right. And yes, when life and death are at stake, it does require a lot of trust in the author that we’ll get to our HEA somehow; but that’s the fun part – not knowing how the heck we’ll get to that HEA!

    Reply
  38. Speaking as someone who has not only read, but *kept* and re-read all your books, I think that the way you implement and work through darkness in your stories is the greatest strength of your writing. It’s more than just a trope and it becomes an actual tangible experience that the hero or heroine has to work through. When reading romance novels, I don’t ever get bothered by heroes or heroines being ‘too damaged’ to be able to function in a relationship; but I do get bothered by quick fixes for trauma and by pat solutions. Often an author will invoke the trope of the war-torn hero or the abuse-survivor heroine, but then these issues will be overcome too easily (often within one sex scene or one therapeutic conversation). What I liked about _Petals in the Storm_, for example, was the fact that it dealt with rape in a believable way. It illustrated the fact that rape-survivors need more than just one good lay to work through their traumatic history. Yes, I like the tortured plotline, both for heroes and heroines – it’s what makes the characters human instead of cardboard. But if one’s going to write the tortured plotline, then it’s got to be done right. And yes, when life and death are at stake, it does require a lot of trust in the author that we’ll get to our HEA somehow; but that’s the fun part – not knowing how the heck we’ll get to that HEA!

    Reply
  39. Speaking as someone who has not only read, but *kept* and re-read all your books, I think that the way you implement and work through darkness in your stories is the greatest strength of your writing. It’s more than just a trope and it becomes an actual tangible experience that the hero or heroine has to work through. When reading romance novels, I don’t ever get bothered by heroes or heroines being ‘too damaged’ to be able to function in a relationship; but I do get bothered by quick fixes for trauma and by pat solutions. Often an author will invoke the trope of the war-torn hero or the abuse-survivor heroine, but then these issues will be overcome too easily (often within one sex scene or one therapeutic conversation). What I liked about _Petals in the Storm_, for example, was the fact that it dealt with rape in a believable way. It illustrated the fact that rape-survivors need more than just one good lay to work through their traumatic history. Yes, I like the tortured plotline, both for heroes and heroines – it’s what makes the characters human instead of cardboard. But if one’s going to write the tortured plotline, then it’s got to be done right. And yes, when life and death are at stake, it does require a lot of trust in the author that we’ll get to our HEA somehow; but that’s the fun part – not knowing how the heck we’ll get to that HEA!

    Reply
  40. Speaking as someone who has not only read, but *kept* and re-read all your books, I think that the way you implement and work through darkness in your stories is the greatest strength of your writing. It’s more than just a trope and it becomes an actual tangible experience that the hero or heroine has to work through. When reading romance novels, I don’t ever get bothered by heroes or heroines being ‘too damaged’ to be able to function in a relationship; but I do get bothered by quick fixes for trauma and by pat solutions. Often an author will invoke the trope of the war-torn hero or the abuse-survivor heroine, but then these issues will be overcome too easily (often within one sex scene or one therapeutic conversation). What I liked about _Petals in the Storm_, for example, was the fact that it dealt with rape in a believable way. It illustrated the fact that rape-survivors need more than just one good lay to work through their traumatic history. Yes, I like the tortured plotline, both for heroes and heroines – it’s what makes the characters human instead of cardboard. But if one’s going to write the tortured plotline, then it’s got to be done right. And yes, when life and death are at stake, it does require a lot of trust in the author that we’ll get to our HEA somehow; but that’s the fun part – not knowing how the heck we’ll get to that HEA!

    Reply
  41. From MJP:
    Tracey–I’m really glad One Perfect Rose spoke to you at such a difficult time. That’s one of fiction’s best functions.
    M. Elise, thanks for saying so many nice things! Sometimes my characters recover rather quickly, but I do try to put the steps in to make it clear that recovery doesn’t happen with a snap of the fingers. It’s hard to move beyond pain. Stories of people who recover and are ‘stronger in the mended places’ have always fascinated me. Obviously. 🙂
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  42. From MJP:
    Tracey–I’m really glad One Perfect Rose spoke to you at such a difficult time. That’s one of fiction’s best functions.
    M. Elise, thanks for saying so many nice things! Sometimes my characters recover rather quickly, but I do try to put the steps in to make it clear that recovery doesn’t happen with a snap of the fingers. It’s hard to move beyond pain. Stories of people who recover and are ‘stronger in the mended places’ have always fascinated me. Obviously. 🙂
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  43. From MJP:
    Tracey–I’m really glad One Perfect Rose spoke to you at such a difficult time. That’s one of fiction’s best functions.
    M. Elise, thanks for saying so many nice things! Sometimes my characters recover rather quickly, but I do try to put the steps in to make it clear that recovery doesn’t happen with a snap of the fingers. It’s hard to move beyond pain. Stories of people who recover and are ‘stronger in the mended places’ have always fascinated me. Obviously. 🙂
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  44. From MJP:
    Tracey–I’m really glad One Perfect Rose spoke to you at such a difficult time. That’s one of fiction’s best functions.
    M. Elise, thanks for saying so many nice things! Sometimes my characters recover rather quickly, but I do try to put the steps in to make it clear that recovery doesn’t happen with a snap of the fingers. It’s hard to move beyond pain. Stories of people who recover and are ‘stronger in the mended places’ have always fascinated me. Obviously. 🙂
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  45. From MJP:
    Tracey–I’m really glad One Perfect Rose spoke to you at such a difficult time. That’s one of fiction’s best functions.
    M. Elise, thanks for saying so many nice things! Sometimes my characters recover rather quickly, but I do try to put the steps in to make it clear that recovery doesn’t happen with a snap of the fingers. It’s hard to move beyond pain. Stories of people who recover and are ‘stronger in the mended places’ have always fascinated me. Obviously. 🙂
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  46. MJ , you didn’t mention my favorite tortured hero of all time, Michael Kenyon. He’s the bomb 🙂 I have such a tattered copy of Shattered Rainbows that I’ve started buying duplicate copies when I find them just in case.

    Reply
  47. MJ , you didn’t mention my favorite tortured hero of all time, Michael Kenyon. He’s the bomb 🙂 I have such a tattered copy of Shattered Rainbows that I’ve started buying duplicate copies when I find them just in case.

    Reply
  48. MJ , you didn’t mention my favorite tortured hero of all time, Michael Kenyon. He’s the bomb 🙂 I have such a tattered copy of Shattered Rainbows that I’ve started buying duplicate copies when I find them just in case.

    Reply
  49. MJ , you didn’t mention my favorite tortured hero of all time, Michael Kenyon. He’s the bomb 🙂 I have such a tattered copy of Shattered Rainbows that I’ve started buying duplicate copies when I find them just in case.

    Reply
  50. MJ , you didn’t mention my favorite tortured hero of all time, Michael Kenyon. He’s the bomb 🙂 I have such a tattered copy of Shattered Rainbows that I’ve started buying duplicate copies when I find them just in case.

    Reply

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