AAR has a column up discussing the weight issue in romances. As I was reading the column I remembered a book I had read where the heroine was not exactly obsessed with her weight (if I recall correctly) but she eventually lost the excess weight by the end of the book and I felt that was a cop out. Can you guess the book?
Scratch that – there may be quite a few titles out there with that type of ending. I am a reader who doesn’t care to read about characters obsessing over their flaws. I like characters to transcend their insecurities and be changed for the better because of love that is unconditional–from family or a committed relationship. I thought Justine Davis did a good job with her book, A Whole Lot of Love. The plot of the book didn’t necessarily focus on the heroine’s weight. However, with Jude Deveraux’s book Three Wishes, the heroine uses her last wish to be thin. I am disappointed in endings such as this.
I am a reader who reads for character and that means going beyond the physical. I avoid books where the plot seems to focus on weight even when it shouldn’t even be an issue. I recognize that women have insecurities but I don’t want to read about them; I prefer to see them do something about it or move on with their life. Fiction can be inspiring sometimes and I feel that most books out there don’t inspire much. Has there been a book or character who made you look at yourself or your life differently? Or inspire you to make a change for the better? There are such books out there but they are few and far between.
So my stand on weight issue is this: I go out of my way to avoid such novels when it’s the main focus or contrivance in a romance novel. I find it insulting. Not everybody can be a size zero. Where I come from, it’s good to have some meat on your bones rather than walk around looking like a skeleton. Anyway, interesting article. Check it out here .
How do you feel when the author has the heroine lose weight for the sake of love? Are you put off with flawed (define that as you will) characters? One of the biggest reasons why I love Laura Kinsale is because almost all of her characters are flawed but they find love regardless of their defect and the reader is left feeling that the two are committed unconditionally.