Wednesday, March 16, 2016

That's NOT a Ménage Romance!

You may not know this about me, but I love menage romance. I love it so much that I get kinda grumpy when I read a love triangle that would sooo make a better menage!

I'm looking at you Twilight.

There's just something about being forced to choose between two people you love that doesn't seem romantic to me at all. Yes, it happens in real life. Yes, a lot of people aren't into sharing.

And some people enjoy the angst and drama of a love triangle in fiction. You can cheer for the heroine to pick the 'right' guy, enjoy all the attention she's getting, and be happy you're not in that mess yourself.

Not my thing, but I get the appeal. A story like that can still have a Happily Ever After for all. Usually the third guy is really an asshole anyway, so no big deal him fading into the background.

But if you want to label a book as a ménage romance, at no point should any of the partners be stuffed away like a sex toy you're done using. If they're not part of the relationship in the end, it's not a ménage romance.

Now, I'm not trying to tell anyone how to write. I've read great books that made me grumble a little, where there was a hot threesome, cuddling, and then the story ended all monogamous. I was prepared because the story was always about those two characters, and they just like to party.

But look at it this way. Would you consider it a romance if you reached the end and the hero died?

Wait, that's a thing too now? But that's not a ROMANCE! It's a love story. A tragedy! Like Romeo and Juliet!


Ok, a rant for another day. Let's just say, as a reader, if I'm looking for a menage I need it to end as a menage. Other genres have certain expectations. Like a happy ending or at least a happy-for-now.

The appeal of a long lasting, poly relationship, is the idea of falling
in love with more than one person and being able to have it all. There will be struggles, like there are in real life. But it WORKS in real life. There are happy poly relationships out there. And if you're not aware of that, you probably shouldn't be writing menage.

I did say write what you want though, right?

Absolutely. But label it something else. I'm begging you!

I grabbed a menage not long ago that crushed me. Like, not in a good way. My trust was completely destroyed because I was naive enough to believe a review would have mentioned if one of the heroes, in a story labeled a menage romance, was going to DIE.

I checked. Not for that, obviously, since it didn't occur to me. What I WAS looking for was any indication that the story didn't end as a menage.

Didn't find anything. COOL!

Yeah...not cool at all. This story was called sexy. Dark. Erotic.

It had a tragic ending that felt glossed over. The 2nd guy was inconvenient. All of a sudden he was a horrible person, so killing him off was no big deal.

I kept waiting for him to come back.

To be okay.

He was playing dead, right? There had to be some explanation for what had just gone down....

Props to the author, because it was well written. Aside from the contrived removal of the spare, there was suspense, nicely developed characters, and an interesting storyline.

Strangely enough, that same book is now labeled suspense.


I get it. Some authors seem to be doing very well writing menage and you want in on that. Kinky sex with multiple partners! You can now label your book MFM, MM, MF, MMMMFFFF, ALL THE FUCKING HAPPENS HERE!!!!

*pssst* You still didn't write a menage romance. Not if it ends with MF.

Not as far as I'm concerned anyway. I'm a reader who loves the genre. So I'll share books that I think my readers will enjoy.

And if they ask me, I'll tell them to avoid any book trying to jump on the imaginary band wagon like the plague.

Seriously, you want to hop on a trend? Try ANY of the MF ones. Make your book a Stepbrother Bear Motorcycle Billionaire who owns a dinosaur.

But leave our menage alone!


  1. Oh man, that would have pissed me off beyond belief had I read a book just for one of the heroes to die at the end. And after reading all the successful poly relationships you have created in your books, a "menage" that ends up with only 2 of the 3 makes me sad.

  2. This is a huge pet peeve of mine! Romance should be romance (happy ending, no tragic deaths), menage should be menage (happy ending should have more than 2 people) and suspense should be suspense (It's ok for the characters to have near death experiences and heart racing action). I don't want authors to break the mold just to be different or even worse get some unsuspecting reader to buy something they have no interest in reading. It's not cool.

    Another pet peeve of mine? If you are going to make your cover model a really hot blond haired blue eyed guy, make sure your character is not a brunette with dark mysterious eyes...

    "Stepbrother Bear Motorcycle Billionaire" made me snort. LOL

  3. If I picked up book thinking it was ménage when it didn't end that way I would be pissed
    Don't label books something they aren't unless you start they dapple in ménage

  4. Yes! Thank you!

  5. Nicely said, I agree

  6. I agree 100%! However, I'd go one step further and include the bromance novels also. I mean with all the sexual tension in the book, just let them fuck!!

  7. I love a good menage. Thank you for writing them.

  8. I love a good menage book or series. Thank you so much for writing them. So very glad I discovered your books

  9. This!!! So much this!!!! I started saying my books are about polyamory (because they are - but probably more accurately polyfidelity, but it's a lesser known term) because ménage has been used so often as a synonym for multiple sex partners, instead of love between multiple partners. My series my take several books to get to this conclusion, but I agree with you, ménage is often misrepresented.

  10. I love menage too. And I'm the same... if there's ever a third person... I want them there at the end too. Have you read Jayne Rylon's Middleman yet? Holy crap it was good. So good ��

  11. Absolutely! I have felt gutted, and resentful, a time or two!