Bodice Ripper Readers Anonymous discussion

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Discussions and Questions > Underaged heroine suggestions

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message 1: by Phoebe (last edited May 21, 2020 11:01AM) (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments Hi guys :)

I recently read the Wind Dancer (link below) by Iris Johansen and it was set in the Italian Renaissance with a heroine who was 16 (realistic for the time period), and a hero in his 30’s. I found this age aspect interesting because it took me back to all the historical marriages that were initiated at these ages.

I’ve seen some books like these mentioned (I think by Andrea?) and was wondering if you could recommend me some.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/9...

(Ps. Have any of you read this book? It’s absolutely amazing).


message 2: by Andrea AKA Catsos Person (last edited Jun 07, 2020 09:19AM) (new)

Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments Hi Phoebe,

Did you read the eBook of The Wind Dancer? Was it “really” a bodice ripper? It turns out that this book is on my TBR pile. I’m a little leery about eBook editions of old rippers because in some cases, the eEdition has had the rippery un pc stuff removed.


message 3: by Phoebe (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments @ Andrea Ooh! You materialised! Yes it was the ebook version. I’m not sure exactly what you mean by if it was “real” since I’m not as experienced in bodice rippers. But I think it is. I do know that the hero fingers her while wearing leather gloves LOL. And does some actual *bodice ripping.* Basically, the reason why there aren’t so many bodice ripper chapters in this is because there’s a lot of plot going in. It’s a very interesting plot. And there’s plague. Great book. The bodice ripper element was there, but took the backseat when the plot picked up. Again, I could be mistaken by what qualifies as a true bodice ripper. I find the ripping is strongest between chapters 3-7.


message 4: by Phoebe (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments @Andrea, do you have any idea about any suggestions for my topic? I think I’ve seen you recommend some underaged characters, or you said you’d be interested in that since it’s historically accurate especially in medieval times?

I read an 18th century book called Through a Glass Darkly by Karleen Koen which is sort of HR/HF. The heroine was 16 and the hero was in his 40’s. Her grandfather was mentor to him at one time, he had sexual relations with her mother for a brief time. I like the story very much but the writing was difficult for me. If only the writing flowed a bit smoother I would have adored this book.


Meredith, Empress of the Sock Puppet Army (meredithgoodreads) | 68 comments Forbidden Love by Karen Robards has a 17 year old fmc and a 36 year old mmc who is her guardian.


message 6: by Noelle (new)

Noelle | 120 comments You may want to try The Taming by Aleen Malcolm. I read this along time ago and it came to mind as soon as I read your post because there were many discussions at the time about the age of the h. I know the h is under age (15 but thought to be younger) when the H first meets her and is given guardianship. There is a forced marriage and in name only but I can't remember her age when the marriage is consummated.


message 7: by Phoebe (last edited Jun 09, 2020 07:19PM) (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments @Meredith, thank you. Going to be completely honest and say I was hoping for 16ish, but thank you so much for commenting I really appreciate it.

@Noelle, thanks! Sounds interesting :)


message 8: by Noelle (new)

Noelle | 120 comments you're welcome! It's one that's on my "keeper shelf", hopefully you enjoy it as much as I did.


message 9: by Simona (new)

Simona (simonaw) | 35 comments Bertrice Small is notorious for having underage heroines in her books. it's rare to find an above 18 heroine in her books. but they are very long books and most of the plotlines are quite similar.


message 10: by Phoebe (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments @Simona, hi! Sorry, navigating GR on my phone always confuses me and I forgot to reply to you. Thank you! I’ve never tried Beatrice Small because they’re erotica?.. how are her books?


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments Phoebe wrote: "Hi guys :)

I recently read the Wind Dancer (link below) by Iris Johansen and it was set in the Italian Renaissance with a heroine who was 16 (realistic for the time period), and a hero in his 30’s..."


I can’t recall the exact ages of the books I have read with a young heroine. Some of the titles that come to mind, the heroine is 18 yo.


message 12: by Morena (new)

Morena | 19 comments I think it all comes down to the heroine's personality, and how she acts. Some heroines act like they are 14, and the author spells out 17 or 18 just to pacify the PC police among the readers.
I, too, recommend Forbidden Love by Karen Robards. The heroine acted like a spoiled child for the most part. In my mind she was 14 for about 90% of the book.


message 13: by Simona (new)

Simona (simonaw) | 35 comments @Morena I have read plenty of books and sometimes it's clear that the 26 year old h is just a teenager in author's mind. Also one of the weirdest quirks of being PC has been that most historical heroines now tend to be above 22 year old spinsters and wallflowers. what about writing about debutantes as heroines which would require them to be 17-18?

I think Virginia Henley tempest is pretty great in this aspect. h starts off as a brat appropriate for her age and ends up growing into responsible wife.


message 14: by JennyG (new)

JennyG | 170 comments Simona wrote: "@Morena I have read plenty of books and sometimes it's clear that the 26 year old h is just a teenager in author's mind. Also one of the weirdest quirks of being PC has been that most historical he..."

I believe Simona means Tempted by Virginia Henley Tempted by Virginia Henley.


I love that book!


message 15: by Phoebe (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments Hey guys, I think I found one.

Heroine is 15 but I’m not sure if this is the case through out the novel.

Called Bond of Blood by Roberta Gellis.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/8...#


message 16: by Andrea AKA Catsos Person (last edited Jun 07, 2020 09:34AM) (new)

Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments Phoebe wrote: "Hey guys, I think I found one.

Heroine is 15 but I’m not sure if this is the case through out the novel.

Called Bond of Blood by Roberta Gellis.

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/8......"


Your options for buying Bond of Blood Bond of Blood by Roberta Gellis by Roberta Gellis are buy a used hard copy (this book will Never be reissued!) or buy the ebook here for $5: https://www.baen.com/bond-of-blood.html
There are also 4 other medieval titles by Roberta Gellis on this site as well. I have purchased them, but haven’t read them as of yet.

Bond of Blood by Roberta Gellis is old favorite of mine full of gritty and harsh realties of medieval upper class women and to some degree the women who were serfs. Also, it’s very heavy on the politics of the time period. It’s almost a HF with sub plot of a marriage/or love theme. It’s very heavy on the politics.

Though it’s an old favorite of mine and I’ve read and reread it many times, I stop short of actually recommending it to ppl. It was written in the 1960s and it shows because it’s not pc in the slightest (lacking the romantic veneer that bodice rippers from the rippers penned in the 70s and 80s have.) and there’s a lack of concern for the type of HEA that leaves the reader with warm fuzzies that we are more accustomed to finding in fiction nowadays.

Edit. Sex scenes are fade to black. Again the book was written in the 1960s, and I believe even in later books Roberta Gellis stayed away from on page sexual encounters. It’s clear in Bond of Blood that sex is happening between the h/h, just not on page.


message 17: by Phoebe (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments @Andrea I TOTALLY forgot to reply to this (face palm). I’ll never get used to navigating GR groups on mobile browser nonetheless.

Thank you for the in depth info about the book! Heavily HF, nitty gritty details of the time period, and not really written with the romantic bent or concern for HEA that bodice rippers have all are incentives to try this book. The only bummer is the lack of sex scenes. Doesn’t it suck that to read steamy books we must suffer through ultra modern, scrupulously PC newer releases? I mean the whole point of non PC is that it increases the hotness! ☹️


message 18: by Mel (new)

Mel (bookhorder) | 200 comments Daddy's Girl by Janet Inglis

This is a controversial book from the 1970's, it is not a romance as such, more a coming of age book. It is better written than lot of books aimed at the dark reads market today.


message 19: by Morena (new)

Morena | 19 comments Mel wrote: "Daddy's Girl by Janet Inglis

This is a controversial book from the 1970's, it is not a romance as such, more a coming of age book. It is better written than lot of books aimed at the dark reads ma..."


I agree, the writing is good because Inglis actually captures the feelings of a 15 year old girl honestly and truthfully. Nicholas is perfect alpha. If he was cast in medieval era he would be having a pick of young novices in a convent.


message 20: by Mel (last edited Jun 09, 2020 03:04PM) (new)

Mel (bookhorder) | 200 comments Re Morena

LOL, yes he would be perfect in a a medieval setting. It is an excellent portrayal of a young girl. They tend to be portrayed with the sophistication of women in their 30’s..


message 21: by Phoebe (new)

Phoebe | 20 comments @Mel wow Mel thanks, thanks sounds interesting. Perhaps not romantic enough based on the blurbs but I really appreciate having this to come to when I’m in the mood.

@Morena, WOW sounds like Valmont 😂


message 22: by BRNTerri (new)

BRNTerri | 84 comments Morena wrote: "Mel wrote: "Daddy's Girl by Janet Inglis

This is a controversial book from the 1970's, it is not a romance as such, more a coming of age book. It is better written than lot of books aimed at the d..."


Looks like the book was first published in 1994 and is the author's second novel (her first was published in 1988.) It's been published under two more titles, Daddy and Darling.


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments Heroine in 16 in Once in a Blue Moon Penelope Williamson.

Not available in ebook though. And I think this IS a bodice ripper.


message 24: by i r e n e (new)

i r e n e (irene_romance) | 67 comments I started Desert of Desire the other night. I think the heroine is 15 that the hero, a Phoenician warrior type, sees, and wants.

It's kind of over-the-top and funny for it. It's set during the biblical times. I'm only about 30 pages in so not sure what will unfold!


Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments Irene wrote: "I started Desert of Desire the other night. I think the heroine is 15 that the hero, a Phoenician warrior type, sees, and wants.

It's kind of over-the-top and funny for it. It's set..."


I shelved it!


message 26: by LuvBug (*Formerly Luvgirl) (last edited Mar 03, 2021 06:43PM) (new)

LuvBug (*Formerly Luvgirl)  | 16 comments In Sinful the heroine is 17 and the hero in his thirties. The heroine solicits the hero to take her virginity. He freaks out when he finds out she's only 17! Shot Gun wedding ensues. Sinful

In The Wicked Guardian the heroine is 16 and the hero in his thirties. The Wicked Guardian


message 27: by Andrea AKA Catsos Person (last edited Mar 04, 2021 02:33AM) (new)

Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments How about a 19 yo? Lord of Ice by Gaelen Foley the h is 19 and ward of H in his 30s. Not a bodice ripper though.


message 28: by Andrea AKA Catsos Person (last edited Mar 04, 2021 12:56AM) (new)

Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments 15 yo heroine: Forever Amber by Kathleen Winsor. A life and times novel. At the beginning, the h is a bold, forward 15 yo hoe 🎂, even for today’s anything goes culture.

There’s a lot of mattress mambo going on (the heroine is like collection plate at a baptist revival) but it isn’t on page because the book was written in the 1940s. The heroine is exasperating, though smart enough to use her beauty as a tool for survival and it pays off in a big, big way! Let virtuous, upstanding women live in poverty!

However, if you’d like to read a book that I believe is the origin of the modern HR that started in the 70s go for it. It’s a long azz book, but I think it’s in Hoopla if your library uses that platform/provider.

It had really good detail about life during the time period and the most deliciously callous, wholly lacking in sympathy and governed by self-interest (I respect that) romance male love interest that I have ever seen. Steve Morgan in Sweet Savage Love had more sensibility than this dude! Like the bodice ripper or vintage HR, Mr Callous dips in and out.

Holy cow! I just wrote a review! I’m going to cut/paste into my review for the book. 🤣I wasn’t going to review this book bec I started it in 2015 and finally finished in 2018. I might have finished sooner if I hadn’t been reading this as a “chunkster”in hard copy!


message 29: by Mel (new)

Mel (bookhorder) | 200 comments That is a great review. I might look into it.


message 30: by Andrea AKA Catsos Person (last edited Mar 04, 2021 02:34AM) (new)

Andrea AKA Catsos Person (catsosperson) | 444 comments Mel wrote: "That is a great review. I might look into it."

Ty. I actually expanded what I ultimately posted for the review on my book page.


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