May 13 2016 9:10am

Impulse Control: Top 5 Romantic Impulsive Decisions

Finding Fraser by KC Dyer

I met Jamie Fraser when I was nineteen years old. He was tall, red-headed, and at our first meeting at least, a virgin. He was, in fact, the perfect man. That he was fictional hardly entered into it...
On the cusp of thirty, Emma Sheridan is desperately in need of a change. After a string of failed relationships, she can admit that no man has ever lived up to her idea of perfection: the Scottish fictional star of romantic fantasies the world over—James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser.
Her ideal man might be ripped from the pages of a book, but Emma hopes that by making one life-altering decision she might be able to turn fiction into fact. After selling all her worldly possessions, Emma takes off for Scotland with nothing but her burgeoning travel blog to confide in.
But as she scours the country’s rolling green hills and crumbling castles, Emma discovers that in searching for her own Jamie Fraser, she just might find herself.

Finding Fraser hit two of my buttons—I like big, impulsive decisions and, well, Jamie Fraser. Merriam-Webster defines impulsive as “doing things or tending to do things suddenly and without careful thought” or “done suddenly and without planning.” Too often I think impulsive heroines get labeled. There’s a big difference, in my mind, between a heroine who’s TSTL (Too Stupid to Live) or a Mary-Sue and someone who’s impulsive. I love when people go out on a limb or follow their heart instead of their head. In Finding Fraser, Emma is at the proverbial crossroads after a divorce and decides to sell her possessions and travel to Scotland to retrace Claire’s footsteps and hopefully find her very own Jamie Fraser. This premise is all kinds of fun. Emma chronicles her travels on a blog and the comments left on her posts are some of my favorite parts of this story. It reminded me a lot of Bridget Jones and her infamous diary. The story was a fun, lighthearted read that made me want to pack up and chase after my own dream man. But I think Posh Spice could take me in a fight.

Finding Fraser got me thinking about some of my favorite impulsive decisions by heroines. Here are my top five.

5. Ginger steals a purse full of money from her mother in Tessa Bailey’s Protecting What’s His:

Bam! Right out of the gate we have our heroine, Ginger, making a really, REALLY impulsive decision. Her alcoholic, drug-addicted, stripper mother is passed out on the couch and her purse is bursting with money. Ginger wants a better life for her and her younger sister, Willa. So she takes the cash and gets the hell out of Dodge. Well, Nashville actually.

As Ginger picked up the purse and slung it over her shoulder, she learned something very important about human nature. Oftentimes people make questionable decisions. And even though they already taste the far regret sandwich headed their way, they do it with a smile.

Ginger and Willa and their Dolly Parton statue land in Chicago and move into an apartment right across from a cop. A hot, filthy-talking cop. And if Ginger hadn’t decided to steal that money from her mother we’d never be treated to the banter between these two and Lieutenant Derek Tyler’s A-game in the bedroom.

“I warned you that I’m having a difficult time being a gentleman. Should I assume you’re provoking me on purpose?

She wet her lips. “Is that what I’m doing?”

The need to kiss her inundated him, but he wouldn’t give in until she asked. Derek rubbed the pad of his thumb across her plump bottom lip, pleased when she inhaled sharply but didn’t pull away. “Let me be clear, Ginger, since you insist on talking in circles. I want you underneath me in my bed. I want to be buried inside you so deep that I have to remind you of your own name. And I want those motherfuckers leering at you from the other side of the bar to smell me on you for a week afterward.”

4. Cade Corey breaks into Sylvain’s shop in Laura Florand’s The Chocolate Thief:

Determined to bring her family’s candy business into the gourmet chocolate world, Cade Corey goes to Paris to woo Sylvain Marquis, a preeminent chocolatier. He rebuffs. He dismisses her. And he won’t even entertain the idea of putting his name to such an inferior product. So Cade goes the industrial espionage route and makes a copy of the key to his shop and breaks in. This impulsive decision doesn’t drive the story as much as my other choices, but it sets up one of my all-time favorite scenes in a book.

Cade is there ostensibly to steal trade secrets or recipes, but she gets distracted by all the exotic ingredients. She is enamored by the decadent ingredients as much as she is by the arrogant chocolatier. She calls him a sorcerer.

Chocolate melted on her tongue, melted into her body. Its warm, rich sweetness combined with the pounding adrenaline until she felt … the closest she could think of was aroused. Desperately, intensely aroused, as if someone could come out of the shadows with his sorcerer eyes glinting and lay her down on the dark counters and …

Cade can’t help but steal a few boxes of chocolate on her way out, which gets noticed the next morning, as well as other clues like a delicate chocolate thumbprint on his desk.

When he came back out into the main room of the laboratoire, Christophe was running his hand over one of the marble counters, looking around, and smiling.

“What?” Sylvain asked him.

“I’m just imagining the kind of person who would steal chocolate,” the curly-haired blogger said, quietly happy. “He certainly picked the right person to steal it from.”

“She,” Sylvain said, remembering the size of that chocolate thumbprint.

Christophe blinked in pure joy. “Oh, that’s perfect.”

Sylvain raised his eyebrows.

Christophe stared at him. “Doesn’t that make you happy? A woman thief sneaking into your lair to steal your chocolate? Don’t you want to hide out here overnight to try and catch her en flagrant délit?”

Sylvain opened and closed his mouth. Yes. He did.

3. Felicity changes her college plans at the last minute to follow Ben to New York in Felicity:

I’ll be honest, if either of my daughters tries to pull this stunt at their high school graduation I will lock them in the house and bring them to the college of my choosing in September trussed up like Hannibal Lecter. But a fictional brainiac who is all set to attend Stanford as a pre-med student but decides to go to a university in New York City based solely on what her crush wrote in her yearbook? Weeeeeeeeee! I’m all in! For the record, all he wrote was that he wished they’d gotten to know each other better. I know many of you don’t like love triangles, but if Felicity had done what was expected of her there would be no Ben-Felicity-Noel angst and drama and I just can’t have that. Also, I might not know what Dean & Deluca is.

2. Tyra has a sex with her new boss before she starts the job in Kristen Ashley’s Motorcycle Man:

Oh boy, I mean, who does that? Tyra Masters, that’s who! Responsible, list-making, think-ahead Tyra. She saw her man from across the room and didn’t look back.

He saw me too and it was my motorcycle man who sought me out. Then he plied me with tequila but he didn’t need to. I was his the minute he sauntered through the crush to get to me, his eyes never leaving mine, his lips surrounded by that kickass goatee curved into a sexy grin. When he’d made it to me, he’d said, “Hey,” in a deep, gravelly voice, and that was it.

And when he kicked her out of his bed and she realized that while he was her dream man the feelings weren’t exactly mutual? She went into the office on day one anyhow and stood her ground when he told her that she was fired in only the way Tack Allen can. “I do not work with bitches who’ve had my dick in their mouth” and “I do not fuck anyone who’s got my signature on their paycheck.” I mean, he’s got a point, but he sure does have a way with words, doesn’t he? But, wait, he does! He really, really does.

“And how fuckin’ greedy you are,” he went on. “Babe, you think you’re around I’m not gonna want seconds, you’re fuckin’ crazy.”

Thank you, Tyra. Thank you for falling for Tack the moment you laid eyes on him and thank you for walking into that office the next day.

1. Mac goes to Ireland to find her sister’s killer in Karen Marie Moning’s Darkfever:

Imagine. I mean, just IMAGINE, if Mac had not gone to Ireland to investigate her sister’s murder. We’d have no Barrons and that, dear readers, is unacceptable. We wouldn’t have these quotes that make me want to pick up the book and read it all over again and again, and Mac would never journey from Ms. Lane to Rainbow Girl.

“Last night you said you wanted to know what to expect so you could better select your attire. I told you we were going to visit a vampire in a Goth-den tonight. Why, then, Ms. Lane, do you look like a perky rainbow?”

“You, Ms. Lane, are a menace to others! A walking, talking catastrophe in pink!”

Barrons had just given me the most carnal, sexually charged hungry look I’d ever seen in my life, and I was pretty sure he didn’t even know he had done it.

Plus, we never would have visited Barrons Books and Baubles.


How do you feel about impulsive heroines? What are some of your favorite moments?

Learn more about or order a copy of the books mentioned in this post:

Finding Fraser by KC Dyer  
Protecting What's His by Tessa Bailey  
The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand  
Motorcycle Man by Kristen Ashley  
Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning  






Story lover. Genetically gifted with red hair and a quick wit. Find me on Twitter: @Phoebe_Chase


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