I wrote a post a few months ago about my pet peeves for female characters and thought I needed to follow up with a pet peeves about male fictional characters post just to keep the conversation even.
The Alpha Male- OK, I’ll admit, I kind of like the alpha males in romance novels. An alpha male is great in an emergency. They take charge of the situation, have a first aid kit on hand (always!) and know how to sew up a wound. Really! I would hate to be a mom of an alpha male because how did they get that knowledge?!! Oh! The other thing I love about the alpha males is that they ALWAYS pay the bill. That’s both in and out of the sack. Their women get the big O, but they also don’t have to pay for their clothes, dinner or security systems! When you need a new security system look for an alpha male, seriously. Now, what are my pet peeves about the alpha male characters? Hmmm, the above has made me re-think things a bit. Searching, searching… Oh yeah! Alpha men are not very emotional. They do know what they want and reach out and grab it (and only let go upon death). However, they are big on the actions speak louder than words scenario. Usually at the very end of the novel you get those three words said, but throughout the novel he is showing his woman his love by performing manly actions; mowing the lawn, a few hundred big “O”‘s and of course saving her life and buying security systems. (My favorite alpha male of them all is in the book below!)
The Indecisive Man- This one drives me crazy! He likes her, then decides he isn’t ready, or his ex comes back to town, then gets cold feet and disappears for a while. He shows back up when his woman is in trouble or goes on a bad date with another guy. Then he’s all in. OK, I know men aren’t all like the alpha male who knows what he wants and goes after it two seconds after meeting his woman, but there has to be some kind of in between. My leading man shouldn’t take one look at me, stick his toe in the water (or something somewhere else) and then say “yeah, maybe not right now.” Then change his mind and come back. That’s a hard guy to go all in with! (I gave the main character the benefit of the doubt below, and he did deliver!)
The Angry Male- A man with a little mystery is attractive, but when he emotes anger, bitterness, and doesn’t trust? I’m a girl who has to buy a house where I can see everything I’m getting. If I can’t see beyond that anger? I’ll admit, I probably wouldn’t stick around to dig through and find out why. But, I know many ladies love a challenge! (I actually loved the angry male in the book below, I’ll admit!)
The I Love to Emote male- Then there’s the guy who is over compensating for all of the alpha and indecisive men in romance novels. This is the guy who is totally comfortable with saying he loves you, your kids, your bad credit and insane mother. The guy who sticks with your mile high baggage even though he should probably run in the other direction. Wait a minute, maybe this guy isn’t all bad! Maybe it’s me? I just don’t trust the emotional male who see’s beyond all of the chaos in his chosen queen’s life and says I love you anyway. Wow, maybe I do need to talk this one out with a professional. (said guy in book below doesn’t over emote but he definitely sticks with her mile high baggage!)
The Charming but Useless Male- Admittedly this male character is usually in historical novels or ya books, but he is hovering around the perimeter of romance noveldom and needs a mention. If you are asking yourself while reading the novel, “yes, he’s all that, but what else does he do?” Admittedly you’re probably insane, but I admire a woman who likes a man with a job, or in the case of a ya male, a high school diploma! Charm can get you a lot of places, but how are you in an emergency? Can you afford a security system? Sorry, got off track there, but there’s something fishy about humor, charm, and good looks. LOL. Not really, but I do like men with jobs! (OK, great book below, but Ambrose is pretty much spot on for this male!)
OK, now that I have admittedly unloaded my issues with men, not just fictional characters, I will say that romance novels do have a raison d’etre! (did I spell that right?) Every woman who reads a romance novel wants a different kind of man for the mood she is in while reading that romance novel. Sometimes, after a tough day making decisions and kicking office butt, I want an Alpha Male to take charge, deliver the “O”‘s and pay for dinner. Sometimes a woman is in the mood for romance, charm, and doesn’t care if her hero has a job. I’m not usually ever in the mood for an indecisive man, but I’m sure some women go for that guy! (If so, then we need to talk!) The point is that reading is selective. We all want different things at different times. That’s why romance novels are so great! You’ve got five novels in front of you and you get to pick which man you want tonight. If only that applied to real life, right? (Sorry, hubby if you’re reading this! jk! I swear!)
Of course, with that man comes a romantic female lead, but if you want to hear my opinions on those ladies you’ll have to read my other post…
What are your favorite or most hated leading male characters or traits? It doesn’t matter the genre!
Which romantic male lead is your favorite of all time? I think I’m a bit indecisive (Oh No!) on that one, but this morning I’m feeling the need for fun and charm. I’m going to skim through my men, um I mean kindle, and take a look!
Until next Sunday!