How low a hero

I took another long haul train ride two weeks ago. $45 interstate fares have a tendency to mobilise me so I hopped on a 14 hour train to Queensland and visited the hatchback-hero-denier-and-in-all-other-ways-wonderful woman Sandra Antonelli and then hopped on another (2 hour) train to stay with amazing Rachel Bailey, both of whom are writer friends who put me through the thinking and writing paces to get my scholarly brain functioning.

Just as 2016 has been a shit and rubbish year for many people – from political recoil, particularly with the heart-wrenching realisation that the citizenry of the world prefers racist, bigoted, lying narcissists as their leaders (thanks Australia for Turnbull, Hanson and Roberts, thanks UK for your vile Brexit and OMG-that-horror-story-that-Stephen-King-couldn’t-imagine-yet-YA-could USA) to the loss of musical greats (David Bowie, Leonard Cohen and Prince), I have had a few of my own personal problems that surmounted to PhD writing meltdown. These long train rides during October and November have served me well in providing thinking and reading time. Though my main activity on the train rides has been university work, I did have enough travel time that I was also able to read some fiction. And on my northbound journey, I found myself grappling with Maisey Yates.

But first, the blurb:

Carides's Forgotten WifeCarides’s Forgotten Wife by Maisey Yates

Greek billionaire Leon Carides has it all: wealth, power, notoriety, even a wife—though he’s never touched his convenient, innocent bride. Then an accident rids this damaged, debauched playboy of his memories… 

Leon remembers nothing, except his wife’s sparkling blue eyes. Now the desire he feels for Rose overrides the gaps in his past, making her impossible to resist! But when his sins catch up with him, can Rose forgive the mistakes of the man he once was? Or will Leon lose more than just his memory?

Continue reading

Mos for Ros

There aren’t enough moustaches in romance fiction.

I’m not talking about beards here – there aren’t many of them either but they certainly turn up in romance novels more than mos.

I’m not talking about the scruff either. That five o’clock shadow is a mainstay on romance covers as well as in the books themselves.

I’m talking about the hairy splendour on an upper lip.

Google image hot guys screen shots

It should not come as a surprise to any of you that I am a fan of hirsute men. I have previously blogged about my love for chest hair in romance novels. So you will understand my need for more facial hair on male heroes (heck – on female heroines too). So here we are in the last week of Movember and the moustachioed hero is nowhere to be seen in current romance fiction. This disappoints me somewhat. In a time where the mo is seeing a resurgence and during a month of raising awareness for men’s health, while our friends, husbands, sons, boyfriends, colleagues subject us to a month of flinching in order to raise money for prostate cancer and mental health for their brethren, our romance heroes are walking around bare lipped or just plain scruffy.

My thought is that if our menfolk can don the pink polos for cricket, football and any number of events to raise money for breast cancer and other women’s issues then the romance industry should step up to the plate and put those ticklers on their protags and their book covers by November 2014. Come on romance fiction industry!

Meanwhile, I did a really scientific survey of my own bookshelves. Now I have a large, and I mean LARGE collection of romance novels and, of all the books that I own, only 3 had moustachioed men on the covers. I pulled them out and scanned them for their mo descriptions:

A Time to Love by Jackie Black“Ross’s mouth would have smothered it before it was half-uttered. She inhaled sharply as she felt his mouth close over hers, the silky tendrils of his mustache providing a shield for both their mouths and giving a shuddering intimacy to his kiss that Ellen would have sworn was impossible”.

A Time to Love by Jackie Black

This guy is pretty special. He is a rarity amongst romance heroes. He is blond. A blond hero with a blond mo. But this mo has tendrils. Tendrils make me think of curls and lengthy mo curls, even if they are blond, just makes me think of the heightened possibility of cereal caught in a mo. I’m not a fan of this description.

Next up:

Passion's Song by Johanna Phillips“He turned her face, and she could feel the soft, silky brush of his mustache, then his mouth, against her cheek. It was more than she would bear”.

Passion’s Song by Johanna Phillips.

Nope. It’s more than I can bear. Silky brush just screams length. Length = more cereal. This is the only description of Lute’s mo in the whole book. I didn’t feel the author’s commitment to his facial hair the way I would have liked.

But then we have Margaret Way’s House of Memories

“You always loved power,” she said, her throat pulled tight.

“Agreed.” The curvy mouth twisted beneath the black, rakish moustache. “Once I even loved you. But that was another lifetime.”

YES! I love that description! I want more!

House of Memories by Margaret Way“Nick stood up and shouldered out of his half opened shirt, his powerful body superbly fit and hard. With the black tangle of hair on his chest and the buccanneer’s moustache, he looked enourmously virile, looking down at Dana from his commanding male height.”

I’m swooning!

Sure, I get it. Few mos look good, particularly when they are in the phasing in stage. I know. My husband tortured me through this process several years ago. Even fewer mos look great. But when they are done well, Oh Sweet Jesus!

Look at these men:

Eagles of Death Metal Mo

Eagles of Death Metal hot biker mo is hawt!

Picture 68

Tom Selleck’s Magnum mo is smokin’!

Village People

The Village People rock us all with a hat trick of Cowboy mo, Biker mo and hubba bubba Construction Worker mo.

Picture 72

Or you can just feast your eyes on Sean Connery mo, Johnny Depp mo or Jude Law mo – bring it on!

A Mo can look awesome. A mo can be sexy.

However, the George Clooney is always only one awkward trim away from a George Roper.

Picture 75



Amended a day later to add a photo of A Paul Rudd mo:

Paul Rudd