Apr 27 2015 12:15pm

They Laughed, They Cried: Standout Moments in Romance Novels

Wild With You by Sara Jane StoneHeroes and Heartbreakers is pleased to welcome author Sara Jane Stone, whose fourth Independence Falls novel, Wild With You, hit shelves on April 14. Shere's here today to discuss what qualities make for a keeper romance, including laugh-out-loud funny moments. Thanks for joining us, Sara Jane!

As a reader, I find the little moments in a book stay with me the longest. Romance, women’s fiction, non-fiction—the heart-wrenching details haunt me long after I turn the last page. But it is the laugh-out-loud passages that lead me to reread a book over and over.

Jill Shalvis is a master of humorous moments. In Simply Irresistible, the first book in her Lucky Harbor series, I love the scene where the heroine drunk dials the hero (who happens to be the town’s master carpenter) and tells him she needs mastering. I’ve read this story more times than I wish to admit and I still laugh every time.

When I asked Codi Gary, author of Bad For Me, if she could name a standout moment, she selected a humorous moment from Julia Quinn’s Romancing Mr. Bridgerton:

“Where Colin asks Penelope to marry him and she falls out of the carriage and to the ground was funny and wonderful because it was supposed to be a romantic moment and they both butchered it.” 

Reading her words, I can clearly picture this scene. And I’m tempted to drop everything and reread Colin and Penelope’s story. This moment reflects everything I love about these characters.

I started wondering if most readers gravitate toward the funny moments. And I decided to pose the question to other fellow romance readers*, asking them to name a romance novel moment that stood out in their memory.

Cheri G. also selected a humorous scene:

“When there is a laugh-out-loud moment I know I'm going to love the book. With Tawny Weber there are plenty of both. In A Seal's Secret, Livi and Tessa are trying to cross a crowed bar, in Halloween costumes, when Tessa spies a “target”. Livi tells her no way—her friend is helping out with the party in the back room, full of Navy Seals. Tessa says okay he had a small dick anyway. Livi wants to know how she can tell from his costume. Tessa explains it's how he sits. He has his legs crossed above the knee. No way can a guy with one big enough to satisfy can cross above the ankle.”

After Cheri shared her standout moment, I reached out to author Tawny Weber. Like Cheri, I’m a huge fan of Tawny’s sexy SEAL series. When I asked Tawny for a moment that stuck with her, she replied:

“I recently finished reading Nora Roberts’ Dark Witch trilogy and the scene that stuck out the most for me in the third book, Blood Magick, was the scene right after first love scene between Finbar and Branna. There was such lovely buildup and so much emotion before and during that scene that it flowed like silk. As much as I love a good love scene (who doesn’t?) it’s the morning after, the aftermath, that really stands out for me as they were dealing with the reality of the step they’d taken and all of the repercussions they’d have to face. Another scene in that book that brought me to tears was in the first third of the story when Finbar’s dog was attacked by the villain.  I’m a sucker for animals anyway, but the emotions, the angst and power of that scene still sticks with me long after I finished the story.”

Like Tawny, some readers find the scenes that stay with them reflect an emotional moment. Crystal H. chose a moving moment from Laura Kaye’s Hard to Hold On To:

“The moment where Easy Cantrell admits to having suicidal thoughts. He's a veteran, and thinks he isn't good enough for love due to PTSD.”

As an author, these emotional sections are my favorite parts to write. I’m often reduced to tears while I’m typing. Thus, I’m thrilled to hear they resonate with readers!

Do you have a standout moment from one of your favorite romance novels? A passage that stayed with you, maybe drawing you back to revisit the story over and over?

*Editor's note: Sara Jane put the question out to readers via her street team, Sara Jane's Seducers.

Learn more or pre-order a copy of Wild With You by Sara Jane Stone, out May 26, 2015:

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After several years on the other side of the publishing industry, Sara Jane Stone bid goodbye to her sales career to pursue her dream—writing romance novels. Sara Jane currently resides in Brooklyn, New York, with her very supportive real-life hero, two lively young children, and a lazy Burmese cat.

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1 comment
Heather Waters
1. HeatherWaters
Whether they're laugh-out-loud funny or so exquisitely painful I have to put them down a time or two, romances become keepers for me when they grab me by the feels and don't let me go from beginning to end. It's a magical thing!
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