Sunday, November 20, 2011

Bad boys of fiction.

Do you ever find yourself asking: Who is the hero in this book? Sometimes it’s hard to tell.

I recently finished reading The Iron King and it brought up a subject that I’ve spent much thought on. It comes up most often when I’m reading books about the Fey. I often find myself wondering who the actual hero is. And here’s confession time. More times than I should probably admit, I find myself rooting for the one who isn’t the hero.

Examples you ask? Paranormalcy for instance. I fell flat on my face for Reth! Don’t get me wrong, I do love Lend, and wouldn’t like to be in the position of having to actually choose between them. But Reth had me at hello, or whatever his first words were.

Then there are Melissa Marr's books. They throw my good and bad radar all asunder. I’m quite partial to Niall and Irial both, and they are not nice men by any stretch. But there is something about them that appeals to me, makes me ache for them. Maybe that is what it is. Their suffering, their loneliness and the near desperate devotion they show when someone comes along that lifts the loneliness, tugs at my sympathetic heart.

One book, Stolen, left me feeling so conflicted about what was right and wrong, and not sure I wanted the right thing to happen. Our captor was so human and beautiful and broken that I couldn’t help but want him to finally have everything he wanted, deserved even.

Is that the answer to the bad boy mystique? Women, young and old fall for the bad boys, because deep down we see their pain (or at least think we do) and want to ease it?

Many times, books where the hero and the villain are not always clear leave me asking myself questions with no easy answers. I find myself thinking about them for days after. In some cases, much, much longer.

What are your thoughts? Where does the appeal of the bad boy stem from?

(In future blog posts I’d like to explore some of the questions/thoughts/concerns this subject brings up. So share your thoughts and maybe they’ll prompt a post. Next week: What about what she wants?)


  1. I am absolutely right there with you! Sometimes I find myself rooting for the "wrong" person, and I feel a small measure of guilt in that. But, then again, I'd love to meet the person that doesn't root for someone like Ty (in Stolen). Now THAT person would be a fascinating study. LOL I was totally obsessed with thoughts of Ty (and dreams, TBH). He was an amazing character, no matter how "wrong" he was.

  2. I'm not sure I would like to meet the person who doesn't root for someone like Ty. How could your heart not go out to him?

  3. Agreed 1000%. (yes, I intended to have three 0's) ;)



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