Rants and Raves – Of Clichés in Books…

Most of my friends don’t enjoy reading as much as I do… and those who do, don’t read erotica… or romance. I mostly read with my boyfriend next to me… so he’s on the receiving end of all my book reading emotions and believe me he’s not thrilled. He encouraged me to start my blog so that I bother him less 🙂

And while I did find like minded readers online (Hi Vedrana, Lenette, Trish, Kelsey, Melai, Athena, Neama… and the list goes on and on…) I still read scenes out loud to my boyfriend (who now has a perfect eyeroll)…

eyeroll ian <- him (only he’s hotter than this guy 😉 )

So it typically goes like this;

Me: OMG I love this book!

Him: Let me guess, the guy is incredibly hot, incredibly rich, emotionally unavailable until he meets that one unlikely girl and they fuck like rabbits only to find happily ever after in book 3.

Is he far off? Probably not. But it got me thinking about clichés in books….


I love when a man says ‘you’re mine’, ‘I own you’ or ‘you belong to me’ 🙂 My boyfriend doesn’t get it.

Him: How can you like this sort of thing?! Women everywhere still fight for equal rights and…

Me: Tuning out………

I mean, I get it. I even did one class in feminist theory -I know all about the burning of the bras… but there’s just something so sexy about a gentleman who goes very caveman-ish on the woman he loves… sigh…

possessive men = bookgasm

books making me orgasm


Who wants to read about an average looking man? The kind of book hero I like is the really hot guy or the outwardly scarred guy. I mostly have read of the former and I’m sure I don’t need to give examples but have you read of the latter? Think Szadist in Lover Awakened by JR Ward, Blake in the Beauty series by Skye Warren and Ripper in Unbeautifully by Madeline Sheehan… It has to be one of the two extremes for me… anything in between just sounds boring.

imgLover Awakened1Cover_BeautyTouchedTheBeast-SkyeWarren-e1368374955114unbeautifully


I have to be honest, this has become a bit too much. If you check the word ‘billionaire’ on amazon… the number of titles you’ll find is astonishing… it’s almost a genre in itself!

billionaire captureOf course it all follows the phenomenon that was Fifty Shades of Grey… but I’ve personally had enough. Some of my favorites have billionaire Doms in them but recently I’ve been searching for anything but a billionaire story.


Again, who wants to read of an average… or God forbid … small one?! But some descriptions are so over the top it’s funny. Was it in The Prince by Tiffany Reisz where Nora says that in romance books the men never have impotence problems? I can’t imagine such a storyline! Maybe someone should write it. Though we do know that Soren in The Original Sinners is only ever turned on by inflicting pain… and nothing else… so I guess we have an exception in him…



Yes, this shows up A LOT! I’m actually surprised how much… the guy always has hair that looks like ‘he ran his fingers through it a number of times’. Ok, it sounds sexy, I guess… but not sexy enough to be mentioned 50 times in a book. Or is it just me? Actually for me, unless you’re mentioning the length of the hair (this is where my friend V tells everyone about my love for long-ish hair) or the color of the hair… I’m not sure I really need to know much more. Oh unless it’s gelled up like Harvey Spekter in Suits… I have such a crush on that man! In fact I’m ending my blog post right here.. I have some swooning to do!

harvey gif   <— Swooooooon!

Are there clichés I missed out on? Do let me know 😉

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25 Responses to Rants and Raves – Of Clichés in Books…

  1. Michelle says:

    I really like when you write one of your rant and rave posts, because it provides a great vehicle for provocative discussion.

    Maybe it’s my age, but I love, love, love the scarred or suffers-in-silence hero, who has turned his pain inwards, but has made a success of himself. The “pretty boys” are great but I want INTENSITY, not just good/great looks. I want a man who KNOWS he’s a man, and is not intimidated by women. I’m a dyed-in-the-wool feminist, but a man who honors, celebrates and simply LIKES women, is someone I want to know. A man who likes to talk to women, be around women, and treats his mother/wife/girlfriend/co-worker/sister, with respect is AMAZING. In order to “claim” a woman, the man must first show her respect, love and allow himself to be vulnerable. Otherwise, she’ll see through the bullshit and walk away. “Claiming” involves two people. It’s not a one-way street. (How hot are those scenes where the heroine is taking center stage, maybe receiving an award or making a major presentation for work, and the hero says, “that’s MY woman, with pride in his eyes?!)

    My heart belongs to heroes with PTSD, very likely, because I live with one and the experience is so different than with any other man, I’ve been with. Being with him is richer, deeper, more intense and no man is more protective, and gentle, than one who knows suffering. Hubby has also read some of the books I’ve loved. I know he is humoring me, but he is well “rewarded” for putting up with my erotica “habit.” 😉

    Hair is nice, but we need more BALD men. OMG. Sexy. Sexy. Sexy.

    Happy Sunday,

    • Ah Michelle! You got me with the PTSD “no man is more protective, and gentle, than one who knows suffering.” Sigh… too true. I’m not sure I’ve read enough of those books… maybe just two… I need more… any recommendations?

      Also I’ve tried to get my man to read my kind of books and he’s agreed to try two but he’s yet to pick them up… I’m afraid of pushing him lest he forces me to read the non-fiction he’s into! Though as much as he complains he does love the reward 🙂

  2. At what point is a cliche a convention? And when does convention become cliche?

    For instance, to me, the “You are mine” thing — totally cliche. I tried to find a million ways to get around it. But I knew I’d get flayed if I didn’t have him use those words. I made it poetic, per his character- but it would have been conspicuous to miss. Those words are a convention, I think. I just told my husband “I own you” is the new “I love you.”

    Rich men (and fuck, let’s not stop at billions – why think small?) have been around since the lord of the manor ripped Cordelia’s bodice off in the orchard (see what Jodi Ann Malpas did there?) Money is a convention that’s stayed around because as romance readers, we want fantasy. Short, plain guy with money problems? Most women married that. Average sized dick? They call it average for a reason.

    I think my point is, the lines are not as clear cut as they may seem. When a reader expects and needs something to find a book fulfilling, that’s convention. When the writer is lazy, that’s cliche.

    Which brings us to…execution. If you have all the conventions lined up, but do nothing with them that is your own voice, and if you don’t have original, real characters performing the play, what you have on your hands is cliche.

    Baby’s up. Gota go!

  3. Lynn booth says:

    I’m the same my friends either don’t read or read totally different genres etc. your bf sounds like mine in as much as he’s bored of listening to me babble about my current book love. He has a perfect eye roll/glare for when i actually lol, giggle at whatever’s being said. E.g- quite a few monents from Drew in ‘Tangled’ by Emma Chase x

    • Haven’t read Tangled but I know the face you mean…that’s why I can’t resist reading it out loud… but he’s taken to reading his books out loud for me… I mean I like Brie Springsteen but I don’t want his autobiography read out to me in Dutch *cue MY eyeroll* 🙂

  4. Bennita says:

    I’m cracking up over the bookgasm!! Well, apparently I love cliches because all of the above equals my ideal book boyfriend. I am a big tired of billionaires too but how much fun would a book be if the hero was broke? Penis size is hilarious in some books I’ve read- especially when the heroine says it’s as thick as her forearm. I don’t know, maybe I have really big forearms, but if it’s that big, I’ll pass on that! I also love a man that claims his woman as “his”. That’s super sexy to me. Although I find some of the cliches attractive in a male lead, sometimes, because I find them in so many books, I picture the same guy in every book.

    • LOL! I’ve also read the thick/big as arm description… seriously?! Why would an author write that? Unless of course, just like you my arm is humongous! lol… but as much as they’re cliches, I love then all… but the author shouldn’t repeat then in every chapter “he bought her a car because he owned half the universe, as he ran his fingers through his hair and told her that she belonged to him…”… then a variation on the next page… sigh

    • PS. I forgot the guy you always picture… mine was always Henry Cavill but now I’ve apparently broadened my horizon 🙂

  5. Laurie says:

    I have to say that I love some of the cliches. I love long hair that I can run my hands through…major turn on. Gotta be rich of course. Love that he wants to spoil the woman…she resists in the beginning but later when they are secure in love she let’s him spoil her. Big cock of course, but let’s be real…some cocks described sound down right painful! I love dirty talk! Think The Crossfire Series….OMG!
    I hate words like nub…who calls their clit a nub? gross! my sex…just call it what it is…I know since I’m writing this I will never think of all of the words that are used way too often by certain authors.
    I do love when a man says “you’re MINE” but I also like it when he insists the that he belongs to the woman…”I’m YOURS” or “I belong to you.”
    The ultimate cliche that I absolutely HATE….is at the end of the book or series the couple either has a baby or they are expecting. Think Fifty Shades of Gray…plus 1,000 more books that end just like Fifty! I’ve just finished reading a steamy, hot book filled with angst and sex and drama…I don’t want to hear about a frickin’ baby!!!! Most of these characters are just getting over significant traumas or broken lives. They shouldn’t be having babies right away. Let’s send them off to finally be happy…just the two of them! Honeymoon….alone somewhere romantic having great sex…..something…anything but having a kid…thinking about having a kid. NO KIDS!

    • OMG Laurie agree completely about the kids. I have one at my skirts right now, and don’t need it in my fantasy life as well.

      • Laurie says:

        Christine, I’ve heard so many woman agree that they don’t want to read about babies or kids in their romance novels and yet writers continue to end their books with them…maybe we should start a petition to authors of romance novels of all genres to stop including babies in the conclusion of their book or series! LOL!
        And Sylvia Day if you’re reading this….PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE…don’t end the Crossfire series with Gideon and Eva having a kid!!!!!!

    • Oh when a man says “I’m yours”… sigh…. LOVE!

      I never really gave the kids thing much thought… epilogues mostly bore me tbh…

      ha! nub! I know what you mean… I read a book where they found every other annoying way of saying clit… just to avoid saying clit… so weird since it was erotica! And another where they kept saying labia majora… really

  6. I can’t tell you how much the kid thing screwed up “The Edge of Never” for me. Not because I didn’t want them to have kids, but because their journey was toward freedom and a life singing on the road. And you gave it up because you didn’t bother to use a condom? WTF?

  7. Vedrana Matak says:

    In a world wherw man have gel in their hair and more moisturized skin then I do, and when they are all ironed up, and with all on them in the right place, and they all are insecured and tip toing around woman, you must ask yourself, where are all the MAN has gone to? I want a caveman in bed and in life, ok polish one who knows when to stop and give me the lead, but not someone who only follows. Don´ t know if you know what I mean (my writing English is little off), but woman has won their inedependece but they become more agressive and man had pulled back and give woman all the power….but we don´t wont that. Ok. we earn and work, and make decision sholder to sholder with our man, but they need to find some caveman-ish underneath it all…
    So, we read books, and find them in it. I think that is why I love Doms and dominant…you can just turn off your brain and go by the flow. I can´t be giving orders all day and all night..take some initiative guys… don´t let me spell it all out for you….og…if only my hubby would pick up a book 😦

    You all said it before me so I wan´repeat, but I do not wanna read about short, bald man with no money, I want some SF, cavemen style and romance that doesn´t exist. 50 shades started all this, and all is good as long I don´t lose focus that this is fantasy :
    Some of the cliches that bothers me in a book ( i totally love Jesss and I need something else in a book, really damaged guy, a really mouthy girl, or rough sex, or just suprise me 😛 )
    – all the girls come at a command
    -The female has an orgasm every time she is touched, or the best one is when she has an orgasm by her nipples getting touched.
    -Virgins know how to give mind-blowing ********
    -she gets a shower, dries her hair, applies make-up, and dresses in under 20 minutes
    -they all have crapy apartments and really cool roomate
    -they all smell lovely and fresh, all the time, allover
    -guy can do it all night long…ok they are big and have stamina but don´t push it
    -it´s always the guy who run after the girl and woo her
    -and the pebble in my shoe; girl always get pissed for some stupid reason and she don´t answer his call becauce he did´t tell her he has an ex, or that he has some bad shit in a past, or he didn´t tell her what he does or some laime shit… lay off girls. let them explaine…..I wouldn´put up with this sensitive crap 5 minutes. If you will be angry find a better reason, that is all I am saying.

    And that is why I started to looooove bikers….you.mine…my.bike.now.

    You feeling me babe?



    • I totally feel you Vedrana 🙂 Which is why I love the Priest and the Biker and all the others that I will never ever meet… lol… you.mine.bike.now. 🙂

    • Laurie says:

      I love all of the cliches you hate. That is…I hate them too! My favorite that you mentioned are:
      Women come on command….LOL!
      Women come whenever touched!…But also women come during intercourse. So many woman cannot or do not come during sex!
      Women come from having their tits and nipples played with…..please!
      The crappy apartment with the great roommate.
      They all have some lovely scent all of time…even after they’ve had sex all night and haven’t showered!
      Also, have you ever noticed that none of them have morning breath! They just start going at it like they have just brushed their teeth and gargled with mouth wash!

  8. Athena says:

    I feel you, I too swoon over Harvey Specter & love all suits James Cavendish style. Anyway thanks for the mention. I couldn’t have said things better all your girls covered your topic well and I enjoyed reading theirs. Good reading………… A

  9. Belle of the Library says:

    I want to read your cliche heroine post. Get on that. 😛

  10. Pingback: Rants and Raves – A Rockstar, a Cowboy and a Biker walk into a bar… | Jessy's Book Club

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