Two lines can change a lot of lives (Part 2)

Make sure you’ve read Part 1 or this won’t make much sense.


There was no way she could say anything to Wade until after the boys went to bed and since it was only around 6pm, the next two and a bit hours promised to be trying.

She got home, taking a deep calming breath before she opened the front door.
“I’m home!” she called out as she walked in, hearing a chorus of voices answer back from the kitchen. She stopped in the doorway to take in the scene. Wade had taken the time to change out of his suit and he was wearing a t-shirt and jeans, which was an equally good look on him.

He was still the hottest man she’d ever seen, eighteen years on, and if anything he was only getting hotter with age. He still had that little smirk that made her knees weak and Celia loved nothing more than to be wrapped in his strong arms, where she felt safe. Continue reading

Two lines can change a lot of lives (Part 1)

My wife, over at Emma Jane Writes, started telling the story of Alessandra and Xavier.

Single mum Alessandra and her best friend of many years, Xavier, finally got together when her son was 13. You can read the bit from that story that Em has shared here.

Three years on, Alessandra’s son Nico has a girlfriend, Abi, who is also 16. I started writing from Abi’s mum’s point of view. This is the first part.

Enjoy.


“Mum?”

Celia looked up from the patient file she was updating to see her sixteen-year-old daughter Abi hovering in the doorway. She looked nervous and it was not a look Celia was used to seeing on her eldest child’s face.

“Honey? Is everything ok? Was I supposed to come pick you up? What’s the time anyway?” Celia stopped her rambling and checked the time on her phone as Abi made her way into the exam room.

No, she definitely wasn’t late to pick up anyone but Abi looked close to tears which meant something was definitely wrong.

She walked around the desk to her daughter and wrapped her arms around her, starting to really worry when the teenager hugged her back tightly and gave no sign of wanting to let go.

Celia stroked her daughter’s hair in an attempt to soothe the teenager who was now sobbing against her chest. It reminded her of when Abi was little and would come to her for comfort.

The two had always been close and it hadn’t changed when Abi had hit puberty or when she’d started going out with Celia’s friend Alessandra’s son Nico about six months earlier.

“Aww baby girl, what’s wrong? Did something happen at school?” Abi shook her head then looked up at her mother, tears streaming down her cheeks.

“I’m scared, Mum,” Abi whispered and Celia took her over to the chairs and sat her down, taking the chair next to her and keeping her daughter’s hands in hers.

“Talk to me, baby,” she encouraged gently and was rewarded when Abi took a calming breath before looking her mother in the eye.

“You know how me and Nico decided we were ready to… to have sex a few months ago?” Continue reading

My Best Friend, the Rapist

It all boils down to consent, doesn’t it? And respect.

She said no but he said yes. This, right there.

Afternoon of Sundries


I knew him, a bright and cheerful bashful fellow; slender limbed, yet short, deep eyes a beautiful chocolate brown fringed with lashes any girl would envy and unruly hair seemingly trying to escape gravity- he was possibly the first man I ever loved.

We talked for hours. We hung out. We were free the first time in our lives- college, oh boy! Watch out! Perfectly like siblings, even though we had opposing views and often argued our points passionately over a beer. We loved revolving sushi bars and loud punk rock.

After a good while of juggling books, classes, schedules and music I introduced him to a lovely girl I had known not as long surely, but someone I thought he could appreciate.

I was of course right, after all I loved him best and I just knew (in that stupid prideful youthful way). They dated a long time. Differences…

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Enough with comments about “bodice rippers,” please.

“What exactly is a bodice ripper? It’s an old-fashioned, pejorative term for romance. Early plots often featured heroines who were “gently coerced” into sex. In other words, the sex becomes consensual after a time, the heroine falls for her swashbuckling hero who looks like Fabio, and they go off and make lots of babies.”

I used to read a lot of Mills & Boon and I still have a couple of favourite authors but last time I picked up a random one, it had a decidedly non-consensual flavour and I had to put it down.

I also put down a novel by a current best selling author because I couldn’t stomach the constant “he knows what’s good for me even when I don’t know myself”…

Romance should make you feel good, and happy, and give you tingles, not shivers of unease.

Yay for romance!

Rosanna Leo

The other day, an author pal of mine shared a comment that she’d received on a review about her romance book being a “bodice ripper.”

Seriously, folks. It’s 2016.

I’m done with these comments. Honestly, can’t people think of another way to describe romance novels?

First of all, I have read this friend’s work and although she writes historical romance, in no way, shape or form could her books be considered the same as the traditional interpretation of a bodice ripper.

What exactly is a bodice ripper? It’s an old-fashioned, pejorative term for romance. Early plots often featured heroines who were “gently coerced” into sex. In other words, the sex becomes consensual after a time, the heroine falls for her swashbuckling hero who looks like Fabio, and they go off and make lots of babies.

Honestly, very few people write this stuff any more and most of us modern romance…

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