Today, author Molly Harper joins us to share her nominations for the most unusual places for a hero and heroine to get romantic. Molly's latest release, Rhythm and Bluegrass, is a novella in her contemporary romance Bluegrass series, and she's in the midst of writing the third Bluegrass title—which inspired this post. Thanks for joining us, Molly!
I just finished writing my first sex scene to take place in a pillow fort. In my third Bluegrass contemporary story, my characters are snowed-in at a work retreat and build the fort to escape the coworkers who are driving them crazy. Small enclosed spaces combined with lots of available pillows leads to nakedness.
Hypothermia has to be prevented somehow.
With this scene, I join a long and distinguished history of romance writers who set love scenes in unusual locations. Sex on a horse, sex in a carriage, sex in an elevator—basically sex on any form of transportation—have become commonplace in the romance genre. Romance characters are getting it on anywhere and everywhere, particularly as more erotic titles require more creativity from the authors.
Alice Clayton’s randy, often-hilarious contemporary Wallbanger is all about characters who enjoy relations outside of the sheets. Her heroine, Caroline, first becomes acquainted with her neighbor, Simon, due to his enthusiastic attentions to lady friends through their apartment wall. They have several near-misses in exotic locations, including an incredibly sticky (honey-coated) encounter on a counter, before finally reaching their goal against the kitchen wall, and a little bit against the floor… and back to the counter. I lost track. But it was super-hot.
A brief search of “love scenes in weird places” shows that there are several categories to this cross-genre phenomenon.
Ill-advised, because it just sounds dangerous. Personally, I would think twice before getting naked on an ice rink like Ty and Jenna in Taking a Shot, Jaci Burton’s red-hot hockey player story, because I could do some serious damage with a toe pick. Also, think of the potential frostbite issues. But good night, excellent storytelling aside, you should buy Burton’s books for the covers alone. The models have sixteen-packs.
Liliana Hart’s funny, wry Whiskey Sour gets an honorable mention in this category for a love scene that takes place on the heroine’s dining room table. I consider this dangerous as my mother would kill me if she ever found out I’d defiled the family’s precious Ethan Allen.
Is it definitely a taboo to indulge in naked, sweaty activities in places where fully clothes decorum is expected, say churches, libraries, and museums. That doesn’t stop Noah from stripping Jackie out of her sweatpants in a confessional booth in Gentlemen Prefer Succubi by Jill Myles. In Jackie’s defense, she is experiencing some pretty serious succubi-related discomfort that can only be eased through full-body contact. You feel guilty while reading it, because for just a moment, you wonder whether you could actually accomplish something similar in a real church without going to hell. The answer: Probably not. You should let the talented Ms. Myles provide vicarious entertainment instead.
And the Say What? Category encompasses the readers’ awe that the characters a) thought of having sex there in the first place and b) managed to accomplish it. Cherry Adair’s amazing love scene on the back of a camel in Out of Sight certainly qualifies. Ms. Adair teased readers for pages, making us think maaaaybe Kane and AJ might attempt sex on top of a dromedary. And then when they finally do it, you can’t believe it’s actually happening. Or how alluring it is.
I am absolutely sure I haven’t even scratched the surface of categories or bizarre settings for romance novel love scenes. Please leave your favorite examples in the comment section.
Learn more or order a copy of Rhythm and Bluegrass by Molly Harper, out now:
Molly Harper worked for six years as a reporter and humor columnist for The Paducah Sun. Her reporting duties included covering courts, school board meetings, quilt shows, and once, the arrest of a Florida man who faked his suicide by shark attack and spent the next few months tossing pies at a local pizzeria. Molly lives in western Kentucky with her family.