Maili wrote a great article for the RTB but, because I am a nocturnal person I missed the deadline for comments (by this I mean I missed the conversation and I would be the last commenter yet again). So, I thought I would just say it here.
I like sex in romance. I like sex in romance so much that I do not even bother reading reviews for books rated subtle or kisses or N/A. Just as a side note, I have read books that I loved except they closed the bedroom door. Can't be a keeper if you close the door. (Once again, for me) Anne Gracie is an example of a wonderful romance writer with a kisses rating. Loved her book but not the door. Nonnie St. George's first book which got so much buzz was bought despite the subtle rating. By the end of the book there is a small kiss and I think my reaction was a bit of an OMG (in the 'not right' sort of way) because until that point they were acting like brother and sister. So yes, I might be missing some great books (Anne Gracie) with no sex but, just in case you haven't been paying attention, I like sex.
Hell, sometimes a warm rating is not enough to get me to buy a book but, I have discovered lately that some books that are rated warm are hot while some books that are rated hot are...not. So I decided to analyze what I do like about sex in books.
Apparently I like this. If you have a sex scene spanning 10 pages having more than a few 'oh yeahs' is a must. (oops, for me) Uhm, hard and fast I like too. Too soft and slow can be toooooooo sooooofffttt aaaannnddd sllloooww. Hmm, not always full penetration sex. Clothes on type of sex, can't stop type of sex, must have type of sex, right now type of sex, no I mustn't type of sex, I don't deserve type of sex...Yeah, I could go on.
The comments for Maili's article had a few people saying that reading sex was for titillation. Okay, maybe but I know exactly what I read for. I read for that stomach falling feeling. I don't think it arousal or titillation? Why do I think that? Because I can get that feeling at the top of a roller coaster, or in the car when I was a kid and my dad would drive a hilly road and race to the top and let off the gas (Lordy, he almost had my brother and I puking at times) or when someone scares me. I also get it when a character says something I thought he/she never would. It is so very rare that I don't think I have experienced it in a long while.
Anne Stuart's Lord of Danger did it and no it wasn't during any sex scene. It was a simple scene near the end of the book where the hero did something for himself and the heroine that I did not expect. Tummy Dip. I remember having a tummy dip during Annie's Song by Catherine Anderson where the hero again surprised me with an outburst of emotion. If I think long and hard, I am pretty sure that there were moments in Shanna, A Rose in Winter and Come Love a Stranger by Katherine Woodiwiss that gave me that wonderful sensation and I would have to say that once upon a time in the land of historicals, Julie Garwood gave good tummy.
When it comes to romance I'm in for it all. I want great characters, great story, sexual tension that cuts and resolutions that are bone-melting and if by some miracle I also get a tummy flip then the book will remain in my keeper pile forever.
So what do you think? Am I deluding myself that the tummy flip is not titillation (maybe I better look the word up)? Have I divulged way too much information? (seriously, a head's up would be good to get this one deleted!)