J.P. Grider is a New Adult and Young Adult author who is a sucker for a good love story—whether it’s reading one or writing one. And when she’s not reading or writing a fairy tale, she’s living one.
You can follow J.P. on Facebook at J.P. Grider, Author, on Instagram and Twitter @JPGrider1, and on her blog at jpgrider.comJ.P. Grider
We read to escape.
We read to get the feels.
We read to relive the first days of a new romance.
We read for so many different reasons, but there’s something us readers of romance—whether it’s young adult, new adult, or adult—have in common; we LOVE our book boyfriends.
We love falling in love with them, and sometimes we love hating them—until, of course, they’ve pleaded and begged and, in the end, have redeemed themselves.
But WHY do we open up our hearts and let them in?
Why do we let them break us and then let them put us back together?
Why do these men, these boys, these fictional characters, have such a huge hold on us—some of them hanging on long after the last chapter ends?
We open our hearts and beg them to come in, because they’re not just pretend men. They’re the very essence of our girlhood fantasies. They’re the perfect princes, who may not ride up on a white horse anymore, but let’s face it—that roaring Harley with that bad boy on top is a lot hotter than a steel-clad knight on his white horse. Or that tights-wearing prince on his unicorn. These bad boys, these broken, damaged, lost souls who camp out in our hearts are the men we’ve longed for all our lives. They’re tough on the outside, but mush when they let their shields down. They have our backs, but they melt in our arms. They can run a multi-million dollar business but have no social skills or they can be mourning the loss of their wife and little girl and don’t know how to move on, but one thing’s for certain—by the end of the book, they’re as perfect as perfect can be. They are mended, sewn back together, and ready to be who we need them to be.
And even if we already have that perfectly imperfect guy walking around the house in his sexy boxers—or nothing at all—we only get to fall in love with him once. Even if we’re lucky enough to stay in the honeymoon stage long after we’ve shed that island bikini and that Brazilian has grown back, we’ve still most likely entered that warm and cozy safe place—the one that allows us to walk around with a green mask on our face eating the leftovers right out of the fridge. And unless we want to put an end to that wonderful relationship by finding another man to fall madly deeply in love with, we’re not going to be the giddy recipient of all those fluttering visiting butterflies any longer. That’s where our book boyfriends come in. We get to invite those colorful winged things back into our bellies, and we get to fall in love for the first time as many times as we want. With every turn of the page, with every book we escape to, we get to melt in someone’s arms and fall in love all over again. And let’s face it—there’s nothing like the first time. Foreigner even wrote a song about it.
And for those readers who haven’t found their own perfectly imperfect stud yet, well our book boyfriends help us to prepare for the big event—a scrimmage if you will.
So, whether we like our men in Amani or distressed leather chaps, or we like ‘em clean-shaven or bearded, there’s no reason we can’t experience the euphoric high we get when we fall in love for the first time, any time we want. All we have to do is open a book (or download one). Who says addictions are bad? Not me. Not when it comes to opening my heart to one of the many wonderful heroes our lovely authors write about.
And hey, if you’re interested in some of MY favorite heart-stopping book boyfriends, I’ve created a list:
Mr. Darcy – Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Tristan Cole – The Air He Breathes by Brittainy Cherry
Logan Silverstone – The Fire Between Hi and Low by Brittainy Cherry
Rune Kristiansen – A Thousand Boy Kisses by Tillie Cole
Mr. Daniels – Loving Mr. Daniels by Brittainy Cherry
Zach Hennington – Say You’ll Stay by Corinne Michaels
Atlas Corrigan – It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover
Asher Sutton – Asher (Boys South of the Mason Dixon #1) by Effy Vaugn
Ambrose Young – Making Faces by Amy Harmon
Caden Banks – AntiStepbrother by Tijan
River “Styx” Nash – It Ain’t Me, Babe by Tillie Cole
Archer Hale – Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan
Travis Maddox – Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
Beau Vincent – The Vincent Boys by Abbi Glines
Edward Cullen – Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
Dean Holder – Hopeless by Colleen Hoover
Dougless Montgomery – A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux
Captain Frederick Wentworth – Persuasion by Jane Austen