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Paranormal Romance > Bad boys – how far is too far?

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message 1: by Vidya (new)

Vidya (vidyasamson) | 82 comments Damon from the Vampire Diaries [TV series] is my idea of a terrific bad boy character. He never threatens Elena but always looks out for her. So I guess my idea of a bad boy is someone who may be a threat to others but never to the heroine. [I have not watched season 1, so I don’t know if he ever threatened her there]

Patch from Hush Hush repels me. he starts off wanting to kill Nora and almost killing her. He constantly taunts her, and his needling and suggestive comments sound like sexual harassment to me.

A hero who is so sexually aggressive toward the innocent heroine is not my idea of a good hero.

What do you think? What do you think is acceptable behavior in a bad boy? Is it okay if he plans to use the heroine for his own purposes, until he falls in love with her? Is it ok if he has some really bad ulterior motives for trying to attract her?


message 2: by Elise (new)

Elise Marion (elise_marion) | 10 comments I'm all about an aggressive alpha male with attitude! One of my favorite book and movie hero types. But I draw the line at abusive behavior.

How the heck can you justify the heroine falling in love with a guy who treats her like crap.

I will say though that I don't mind heroes using the heroine for nefarious purposes at first, so long as he doesn't treat her too bad. I've read some really good books with this as the premise!


message 3: by S.L.J. (new)

S.L.J. (sammyslj) | 103 comments Rapey/stalker behaviour doesn't equal hero in my opinion. It equals douche bag. I mean you argue that the secret service are stalking the president but that is their job and they never become a threat to him.

I don't get how people can like Patch.

I always loved Leon from the Luc Besson movie. He is a mass murdering 100% lethal hitman but he's also sweet and protective and kind of awkward.


message 4: by Bridget (new)

Bridget Bowers (bridgetbowers) | 36 comments I am a sucker for a bad boy, but I totally agree 1,000% that at no time should a bad boy attitude cross over into abusive behavior. As a society we have enough trouble with abuse towards women that there is no need to make a "hero" abusive and thereby make it seem okay to any woman that it is acceptable behavior.

I think the best bad boy characters are the ones that seem dark or that flirt with the wrong side of the law or push boundaries, but are at heart still good men. They should especially have a redeeming quality that shows despite sometimes negative attitudes or aggressive behavior, they are improved by the love of a good woman.


message 5: by [deleted user] (new)

"I think the best bad boy characters are the ones that seem dark or that flirt with the wrong side of the law or push boundaries, but are at heart still good men."

This reminds me of Patch. Although he wasn't there for Nora in the second book he patched things up (sorry about the pun!)

I like Patch's personality and I hope there's a fourth book!


message 6: by Katie (new)

Katie (skateanddonate) That's one of the things I absolutely love about the Kresley Cole books; how she takes a bad boy who we think has gone to far and then shows their redemption


message 7: by Vidya (new)

Vidya (vidyasamson) | 82 comments I think it works better when we see things from the bad boy’s POV too so we can better understand him.

Some readers object that they don’t like POV switches when a novel is in first person.

But I like them. I liked that in Falling Under, Gwen Hayes explained from Haden’s third person POV why he was treating Theia like that. He deliberately flirted with other girls in her presence because he was conflicted and though he wanted her, he felt he had to drive her away for her own safety.

It didn’t totally excuse him but it made him more acceptable in my eyes.

Personally I would like to see the hero’s POV even in books where it’s a first person narrative by the heroine.

What do you think? Shouldn’t PNR feature both the hero and heroine’s POV? It could even be done in alternating first person, I think. don’t you think that would work?


message 8: by Katie (new)

Katie (skateanddonate) Nope. I absolutely hate changes of POV in books written in first person. Being able to tell a captivating story from only one person's point of view, to me, should be a requirement for first person. Head hopping always draws me out of the story.


message 9: by Cindy (new)

Cindy | 112 comments I like the back and forth POV too, Vidya. I like finding out more about both main characters instead of just one of them.

It's like that in Dearly, Departed by Lia Habel - she actually writes from the main 4 or 5 characters' perspectives.

My view on it is - even if there is a "main character" that the POV is written from, there is ALWAYS a second main character that is just as important to the story line - so how is it that that character's mindset isn't as important?


message 10: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth May (elizabethmay) Katie wrote: "Nope. I absolutely hate changes of POV in books written in first person. Being able to tell a captivating story from only one person's point of view, to me, should be a requirement for first person..."

Myself as well. If there's going to be any POV changes, I much prefer the book to be written in third person. I've seen several instances where authors use first person head hopping between love interests, and the hero ends up sounding little different from the heroine.


message 11: by S.L.J. (new)

S.L.J. (sammyslj) | 103 comments 3rd person books can make changes in character POV's so much easier to read. Like in HP where the first chapter of book 6 & 7 don't include Harry. I much prefer 3rd person anyway.


message 12: by Shannon (new)

Shannon Dermott (shannondermott) I'm a sucker for a bad boy. I love Christian in Fifty Shades of Grey (not PRN but a darn good book). I also loved Travis in Beautiful Disaster. (Also not PRN but still a good book). But these books represent bad boys gone way too far. I can't think of any PNR that has taken it too far as the two book mentioned above. I'm reading Gabriel's Inferno which is also another irredeemable bad boy.

I like Patch, Damon (Vampire Diaries), Ren (Nightshade), Logan & Zach (Shade), Jean-Claude (Anita Blake) and Nash (Soul Screamers). All of them bad boys, but not irredeemable ones.


message 13: by Duchess Nicole (new)

Duchess Nicole | 138 comments I like the changing POV too, ladies! I prefer it, actually. To me it feels like more of a well rounded story. I like being inside the man's head. I remember thinking when I read the Fever series that I wished I could know what Barrons was thinking. Even if there are just a couple of paragraphs, little snippets of their inner workings, I think it would help us to understand those bad boys better. There's just something about the alpha male with a really rough exterior that makes me want to know the rest of the story.


message 14: by Danielle The Book Huntress (Winter Frost Queen) (last edited Nov 10, 2011 07:15AM) (new)

 Danielle The Book Huntress (Winter Frost Queen)  (gatadelafuente) | 461 comments I love dangerous heroes/bad boys. I don't like when they are overtly abusive to the heroine. I can deal with it if they start out as enemies, and he treats her as such. If she is truly his enemy, then he would treat her the same as he would a man who was his enemy. That's a mark of respect that he doesn't look down on her abilities because she's a woman. But I don't like a hero who would abuse women just because.

I think that the sexually aggressive hero can be repulsive to me if not done well. I have read some books that pushed the envelope that I liked, and others that really turned me off. I think it's also a matter of the hero coming off as a straight up misogynist. If I get that vibe, then I'm done with him.

Honestly, I like when an author pushes the envelope with her hero. Anne Stuart does this very, very well. Also Christine Feehan. I love stalkerific heroes personally, although I know they aren't for everyone, and I don't condone obsessive/pathologically possessive/stalker behavior in a guy in real life.

I think it helps if the writer shows the dark/dangerous hero's one soft spot. For example, even if he's a really bad man, at least he loves the heroine or his mother, or cats, etc. :)


message 15: by Duchess Nicole (new)

Duchess Nicole | 138 comments "I don't condone obsessive/pathologically possessive/stalker behavior in a guy in real life."

Oh, that's the fun! While I love to read about pushy/possesive/stalker alpha bad boys, I'd run far, far away before actually dating one. Escapism, baby! That's what's so fabulous about reading!


message 16: by Elise (new)

Elise Marion (elise_marion) | 10 comments I have to agree that change on POV don't make sense in FIRST person. First person is supposed to be one persons POV. I prefer to read my romance in THIRD person though, because then you're inside the head of both people. I am the type of person that likes to know everything! As an author, it is definitely my writing style to be "god" and get inside everyone's head. I don't like to guess! =)


 Danielle The Book Huntress (Winter Frost Queen)  (gatadelafuente) | 461 comments Duchess Nicole wrote: ""I don't condone obsessive/pathologically possessive/stalker behavior in a guy in real life."

Oh, that's the fun! While I love to read about pushy/possesive/stalker alpha bad boys, I'd run far, f..."



Totally agree, Duchess. To me, the appeal of a stalkerific hero is absolute devotion/fixation on the heroine. I'm not the kind of woman for that kind of guy in real life. I like doing my own thing and I don't like being controlled or having to report to someone. But in the books, it gives me shivers!


message 18: by Vidya (new)

Vidya (vidyasamson) | 82 comments Head-hopping doesn’t really bother me. it depends what you mean by head-hopping. I consider it head-hopping when you get both the hero and heroine’s POV in one chapter. Too many POV switches in one chapter and I agree it can get distracting.

But I think something like Twilight, Book 4 works. The first third is Bella 1st person POV, the next third is Jacob’s and then the last third Bella’s again.

Some people said they didn’t like it but I thought it worked well and I enjoyed getting into Jake’s head and seeing what he was feeling.

I feel deprived if I get only the most cursory glimpse into the hero’s thoughts and feelings. So I think something like having the first half of the book in heroine’s POV and the second half in the hero’s would work. don’t you think that would work?


message 19: by Bridget (new)

Bridget Bowers (bridgetbowers) | 36 comments There is nothing more exciting than a tough bad boy that makes you shiver. That is the beauty of reading, you can experience something that you wouldn't or couldn't in your own life.

Who wouldn't get the shivers to have some bad boy obsessed with you and sweep you off your feet?


message 20: by LibraryLass (new)

LibraryLass | 81 comments I'm with you Elise, I much prefer my romance in the THIRD pov. I love nothing more than getting into the heroes head. This is the biggest reason why it took me so long to get into both the PNR an UF genres - and I still struggle sometimes with making myself read highly recommended series if I find they are in the first POV.

As to the original topic. I like the heroes to be alpha, possessive even a tad arrogant as long as they NEVER become abusive. But I like to know why they are like they are hence my pov problem. I have all of Anne Stuarts' Ice series to read but have been reluctant to read them because the heroes (I've heard) are a bit more gamma (?) than I might like.


message 21: by Manvir (new)

Manvir (lucyheartfilia) | 72 comments I like seeing the other main characters POV, but I hate when sometimes you go into everyone's head. All the minor characters get a chance in the spotlight, and that throws me off. Thankfully I've only read a few books like that.

As for the whole bad boy hero discussion, I prefer a strong alpha male type. As long as he never abuses the women, being possessive or a little on the rough/gruff side is ok. Although I hate when all of a sudden the big bad tough guy turns into a total spineless softie. I've read some bad books where it almost seems like the main character becomes a completely different person than he was before.


message 22: by Elise (new)

Elise Marion (elise_marion) | 10 comments I agree Lucy! While I like the omniscient POV but only to a certain extent. Main characters and maybe one or two secondary characters if its relevant.

And nothings worst than an alpha male turned softie....ick!


message 23: by Sandra J (new)

Sandra J Weaver (sandraweaver) | 451 comments LibraryLass wrote: "I'm with you Elise, I much prefer my romance in the THIRD pov. I love nothing more than getting into the heroes head. This is the biggest reason why it took me so long to get into both the PNR an..."

I'm with you on the third person POV, especially the main characters. I've read and enjoyed some first person POV; but I have a real difficulty getting into the story, and often those books end up DNF. I also like the alpha male strong and rough/gruff on the outside, but softer on the inside. I love Shelly Laurenston's alphas-strong, possessive, capable, sexy, and witty, and never abusive toward women or children.


message 24: by LibraryLass (new)

LibraryLass | 81 comments I've not read anything by Shelly Laurenston - but they sound just like my cuppa tea ;)

I do like some series in 1st POV, Mercy T., Night huntress... but other series (which I have on my shelves) written in 1st POV, I tend to keep bypassing even though they get raved about eg. I have ALL the Karen Marie Moning Fever series (and Highlander), all Magic series by Ilona Andrews - both series well-raved up here on GR, but I have yet to pick them up!


message 25: by [deleted user] (new)

I love first person POV for PNR or UF--especially Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series. But it's hard to pull off without making the hero look like a jerk; you can't see into his head, so it's a tricky business.

I love Bones, for example, but in the last book I read of the series, the one where he freaks out on the piano, I wasn't too fond of him.


message 26: by Shannon (new)

Shannon Dermott (shannondermott) Funny enough, if I'm reading a well written book, I hardly notice was person their writting in. I find if I'm picking up on little annoying details, the book isn't that good.


message 27: by LibraryLass (new)

LibraryLass | 81 comments Stephanie wrote: "I love first person POV for PNR or UF--especially Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series. But it's hard to pull off without making the hero look like a jerk; you can't see into his head, so it's a ..."

Exactly Stephanie! But if we could have had a glimpse of what was going on inside his head, you may have been completely different reaction.


message 28: by Sandy S (new)

Sandy S First person POV gives the reader a completely different take on the storyline.

The best example I can give,and it isn't the only one, is the case in Twlight...the first book.

Then entire series is told from Bella's POV, but Stephenie Meyers, wrote..Midnight Sun...Edward's POV in Twilight...and it gave an entirely new twist on the characters etc.

< a href="http://bodicerippers-shauni.blogspot.... Rippers


message 29: by Bridget (new)

Bridget Bowers (bridgetbowers) | 36 comments I agree Sandy, when you read what Stephanie Meyer wrote in Midnight Sun, things take on a different meaning and look when you understand his way of thinking.


message 30: by Candy (new)

Candy Pacheco (redaii) | 10 comments yeah. i never finished reading it though. but from the little bit that i read, i agree


message 31: by Katya (new)

Katya | 645 comments Elise wrote: "I agree Lucy! While I like the omniscient POV but only to a certain extent. Main characters and maybe one or two secondary characters if its relevant.

And nothings worst than an alpha male turned ..."


Elise you are soooooooooooooooooo right!


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