Reading is the perfect escape. When we read, we can be anywhere, at any time and with whomever we choose. Romantic fiction outsells all other genres. We allow ourselves to be swept away by the belief that true love will overcome insurmountable odds. We somehow believe that we could love a vampire, let him drain us of our life force, take away our sunshine and we would be thrilled with him for all eternity. Or that an arrogant, womanizing but --misunderstood Duke could abduct us, treat us like chattel and we would grow to love him in spite of his actions. We only need to tame him. Make him better; because that is what he really wants, right?
Yet when our friend, lover, partner, gives us what we need we often take it for granted. When he/she stays up with you because you can’t sleep or offers to help with a project, even though they have plenty of projects of their own; that’s romantic.
So why do we gobble up these stories as an escape from reality? Is it so difficult to believe that love is found in the simplest moments? Life is only as much of an adventure as we make it. Why would we try to fool ourselves into believing that real love is not the greatest adventure of all? Perhaps, there would be more HEA’s if we took the time to look at and appreciate our lovers for who they are. For most of us, we will never marry a Duke or have hot eternal sex with a vampire :( We can however, still escape to a magical world of wonder that reminds us; love is not easy, conflict is around every corner and with a little effort, the characters can find the right words to work through it. When you take away the castles, the demons and the purple prose I guess it is not quite as far from reality as we thought.