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Posts Tagged ‘paranormal romance’

I thrive in all kinds of stories that have dark, sinister and haunting secrets to reveal. Although I read a whole lot of popular adult fiction and Booker prize winners, my love for the dark keeps bringing me back to the world of paranormal fiction (even better when it’s coated with romance). I absolutely  love watching films that have got everything to do with mystery, horror, suspense, thrills and chills and I can’t even begin to describe the adrenaline rush that sends my guts shooting way high!

Let me tell you how and when the seed was sowed. Where I come from, when I was growing up, it was extremely popular to sit around a fire outdoors during winter holidays  and have an elder relate ghost stories to us. My friends and I loved listening to tales shrouded with mystery and darkness as we huddled together in front of the fire in the early hours of twilight. What, for others was a recreation became an obsession for me. I usually pelted the narrator with hordes of questions for which, after a while I was often reprimanded for being too curious. My desire to hear more of it was fueled by my mother’s penchant for dark tales and being an excellent narrator  and an avid reader she was at the time, she was a powerhouse of ghost stories (she still is). I relished each story  with a very keen enthusiasm that my mother told, and someday I wanted to write stories that spoke of dark places, sinister people and stories with not-so-happy endings. Of course that was a wishful thinking that I am still pondering  upon two and half decades later.
When I was around nine years of age I used to imagine that I had an invisible friend who came from the cemetery below the town, who could read people’s minds and who told me which teacher in school was kind and who wasn’t. Who I even thought helped me with my homework. At this particular time, I was living as a paying guest at neighbour’s house because my mother had to shift to another state due to work. My father was working out of station too and my brother was tucked away at a school hostel run by the Jesuit brothers. A dark time it was for me as I was extremely attached to my family and this stage of my life encouraged me further to fill myself up with even darker stories so that I would not have to deal with longing for my family. I became quite popular among my class mates for narrating ghost stories during lunch breaks. Sometimes I conceived all my stories up as I narrated it, and with a nine or ten-year old creativity I do not remember how convincing they were but I remember those wide saucer like eyes looking back at me as I narrated my stories. Once I remember telling my friends that I’d spent my winter vacation in Australia with a cousin (I have never been to Australia) , and that we were living outside town in a beautiful cottage with only one neighbour. The neighbour was very strange and mysterious and would never come and say hello and their seven-year old daughter was the strangest of the all. She was always dressed in white and would stare from a distance. She would run away as soon as she was caught staring. One morning I happened to wake up around five and upon going out I spotted the neighbour’s daughter sitting in the front porch on an old rusty swing seat but something was odd. I remember getting all excited as I geared up to tell the others what it was that looked out-of-place – on one of her arm rested a huge human leg which she balanced with her forearm entwined around it in a precarious manner! The leg still had shoes and socks on and I bolted back into the house as she turned around to look at me. That was how my story ended with an afterword of how I demanded to be sent back home from Australia immediately after the incident. I still wonder why I chose Australia.

Unable to move back as a family, I was sent to a school hostel to spend the rest of my school years. I spent the most horrific time of my life there with scarcity and ruin and harsh discipline being the order of the day. The school building was on the verge of dilapidation, it was already crumbling at places, some windows had no glasses in them, the beds were so broken that we literally held it in place with our old school ties to prevent ourselves from falling through while we slept. I identified myself with Jane Eyre when I read the book then, but I had this responsibility to myself to make my life a bit more interesting, and I did. I enriched my life by imagining all sorts of crooked tales and evil shadows that lurked in the dark corridors of the school. I often chose cold lonely abandoned classrooms for my story-telling sessions during times when there was no electricity, and when darkness was fast approaching. After dinner when we were all ushered back into our dormitories, a crowd often gathered around my bed to listen to stories that they most wanted to hear – ghost stories. The saddest part however was that, even though I genuinely made up stories, I fabricated them based on stories I had heard elsewhere and even though I narrated them with a good deal of energy, I never wrote them down. I never made it a point to chart down all those eerie stories that I had conceived and nourished in that tender mind

I wrote letters to a certain “page” when at times I was distraught, when home-sickness overwhelmed me but I have no idea where it all disappeared. Having a kind of life that contributed a whole lot on sowing a seed of this particular penchant for dark Gothic tales, I cannot be more thankful to the turn of events in my life during its early phase. The seed has grown into a full-fledged tree and it is nested by all kinds of deep, dark and foreboding fantasies. The fruit is yet to burst out from the over swollen buds but the process has begun. I guess life doesn’t hurt badly at all when you have so much interesting things going on in the depths of your mind, and when you can breathe life into the figments of your imagination. It’s definitely going super great for me specially since the time Twilight series confirmed that there is love  and romance to be found even in a life beyond the entrapment of death.

I sincerely want my lovely boys Noah and Elvin to inherit my propensity for Gothic tales. So far I see a gentle spark of curiosity for it in Noah but he has declared his sense of fear for it, so I won’t nudge him there : ). Elvin is still too young and my husband Jonas has undergone a tremendous change since the days he used to hide behind cushions and pillows during a horror movie session to the days he started suggesting a “horror film” to me. He has turned into one avid reader of paranormal fiction series and that itself is a huge step towards understanding this wife who delights in pulsating shades of Cimmerian fantasies.

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Romancing the Vampire, the Werewolf and the Fallen angel

We fell in love with vampires and werewolves. Are we ready to fall in love with fallen angels?The fallen angel

Needless to pinpoint that Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight series gave the vampire an entirely new approach. Earlier, vampires were just blood drinking machines, with absolutely no remorse whatsoever. How could they feel pity when they had no brains? When they had no heart? But Meyer changed it all in a grand way. She gave the vampire a heart. Perhaps not a soul, but yes definitely a heart.

“I may not be a human, but I am a man.” (Edward Cullen,Twilight)

Irrespective of his or her hundreds of years on earth, the vampire was no longer simply a blood drinking machine. He knew how to fall in love, to feel love, to feel pity. In other words, Meyer breathed emotion and sensibility into, otherwise blood chilling beings, transforming them into divine, powerful and humane creatures.

“If I could dream at all, it would be about you and I’m not ashamed to say it”
(Edward Cullen, Twilight)

Then came the turn of the werewolves. Meyer also went to the extent of glamourising the wolves giving their existence a whole new dimension. The wolves and humans existed within each other, phasing into whichever form that was thought necessary.

Another legend claims that we descended from wolves ― and that the wolves are our brothers still. (Jacob Black, New Moon)

Both vampires and wolves have a strong affinity to this frail human girl. The old classic novels/movies’ conception of a damsel in distress has once again been revived by Twilight series. Two equally strong, powerful creatures fighting for the love of their lives who is just a simple, vulnerable and a pale young girl, a normal girl who has the least bit of a notion that she is the crux of the entire chaos in the story.

“I can handle the clouds but I can’t fight the eclipse” (Jacob Black to Bella, Eclipse)

Thus both vampires and werewolves have succeeded in establishing a healthy paranormal relationship with humans. They maybe daunting and even dangerous but they certainly are irresistible and alluring. In future, no matter how many stories maybe written about vampires or werewolves, no matter how many novels maybe published in a similar light, Stephanie Meyer’s perception of the “dark protagonists” shall persist in a long time to come.

Then, in between came the House of Night Series by P.C. & Kristin Cast. Traditionally set in the same mood as the PC & Kristin CastTwilight Series, the protagonist in this series is however a 16 yr old girl, Zoey Redbird who in the beginning is marked by a vampire and is driven to join House of Night, a school for fledglings (budding vampires). Zoey is not just marked, she has also been specially chosen by Goddess Nyx to become the future high priestess. The first book Marked was quite mundane, with irritable dialogues, with way too familiar characters and nothing out of the ordinary happening as expected of your adult gothic fiction. However things start to get heated up from the second book which is called Betrayed. Betrayed covers up for all the action that was missed in Marked. What is interesting about House of Night series is that although it is far-fetched, it is clever and has entertaining insights into the truth about vampires and about vampire fledglings.

“Remember, darkness does not always equate to evil, just as light does not always bring good.” ( Goddess Nyx, Betrayed)

On the whole entertaining and although belonging to young adult gothic fiction genre, it kind of appeals to all gothic fiction lovers. Twilight series bowled me over and I was no teenager. House of Night Series captivated me and I am no teenager.
Betrayed is followed by Chosen, then follows Untamed, Hunted, Tempted and Burned. Which means the characters really grow on you by the time you conclude Betrayed and move on to the other novels in the series.

After everything came to a standstill since Meyer’s whirlwind books, there was some buzz that was initiated by House of Night Series (it still is, here and there).

Paranormal Romances – Our favourite brand of heroin!

Then again suddenly, there is that familiar smell in the air again. The smell of forbidden-cum- transcendental romance. Only this time its humans vs angels! Not the halo-adorned, happy-go-lucky white winged creatures, but dark, cynical, arrogant yet sexy and alluring angels fallen to the very ground!

Young Adult FictionThe fever started all over again when Becca Fitzpatrick’s debut first in series novel Hush Hush was published on 13th October 2009 . From 16th century France to present day in Cold Water Maine, US, our protagonist travels a long way to make sense of his existence.
Upon the teacher’s attempt to change the seats in the biology class, Nora Grey, an awkward, plain girl comes to sit beside the new student Patch. Attractive, sensuous yet arcane and dark, Patch shows his negativity towards Nora when he openly mocks and torments her. But there is indeed more to Patch for things starts to change ever since the day Nora starts sitting beside Patch.

His black eyes sliced into me, and the corners of his mouth tilted up. My heart fumbled a beat and in that pause, a feeling of gloomy darkness seemed to slide like a shadow over me.(Nora Grey, Hush Hush)

She is being watched! She finds Patch everywhere she finds herself! Other than a bizarre scar on his back, Patch can communicate with Nora without speaking and it is up to Nora to find out that Patch is no human. She fears him but is drawn to him nonetheless just like Bella Swan is drawn to Edward Cullen like a moth to a flame. See the similarity? But there is much more than that to be expected out of Fitzpatrick’s debut series.
The sequel is called Crescendo and is being released on the 14th of October 2010 and the excitement continues I hope!

Lauren Kate another debut novelist unveils yet another familiar series of novels about supernatural romance. TheYoung adult fiction first book Fallen typically familiar to Hush Hush, character wise, since it also involves the almost taboo-filled attraction between Lucinda Price (Luce for short) and Daniel Grigori, where Daniel, like Patch goes out of the way to keep his distance with Luce. Luce and Daniel meet in the reform school where she is sent to, after a mysterious death of a boy who is in her company at the time of his death – I don’t intend to be a scene spoiler but since its already out in the open, what the heck!
Luce is mysteriously drawn to Daniel with a gnawing feeling that she knows that she has seen him somewhere before! And where could that be? No more spoilers from me, that’s for sure! The sequel Torment is due to be released in July 2010.

Whether its romancing vampires or werewolves or fallen angels, the desire for impossible romance amongst younger demographic has always topped the list. The need to fall in love with someone who is much more powerful, stronger and unreachable has been innate throughout generations! Initially the terms “powerful” “stronger” and “unreachable” was defined by a middle class female protagonist falling in love with a lord or a duke or even a prince! Or vice versa. Which according to the time was the most desirable fantasy amongst the reading generation. For example classic novels have alway embodied this desire in the most agreeable way. Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall, Elizabeth Glasgow’s Ruth, Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights etc. In all of these novels, one of the protagonist is in a higher and in a much more powerful position than the other. But the romances were played out between natural people, under natural circumstances unlike the stories of today.

Today, the desire to fall in love and to be loved back by a higher being has intensified, has been exaggerated to a point that the line between fantastical characters and real life characters have been wiped out– and for that matter be it a vampire or a werwolf or even a fallen angel, all is seen as a higher being than a normal human.
It is that continuously growing desire to taste the forbidden fruit during early youth, that these writers have so well recognized in today’s youth, and they have captured it extremely well with their words that they have left the young wanting for more as if it’s their “own brand of personal heroine” (Edward Cullen, Twilight).

And then there are readers, who do not belong to the generation of teenagers, but they are completely enamoured byreading supernatural romance fiction nonetheless. They have contributed greatly to those numbers of sincere Twilight readers whose ardent passion drove Hollywood to conjure up Edward Cullen and Bella Swan on the silver screen.
They belong to that genre of readers who silently but surely appreciate reading about young romances for many personal reasons. These readers are specially fond of impossible supernatural romance fiction that is extremely popular these days simply because, they still are awkward teenagers at heart that they once were. Despite the fact that most of them have families, have children, are completely immersed into a nine to five harrowing work timings, They haven’t forgotten what it was like to go through the age of storm and stress when, apart from other growing pains, the most desirable object of your attention spurned your advances. Those humongous efforts that one took to dazzle that human being sitting next to you in class, or living next door to you, or that insanely attractive guy who was your brother’s friend or that mind blowing beauty who your sister’s friend, still stays freshly lodged in the back of their minds.

We all have been there, some of us have been lucky to have been popular while most of us were the suffer-in-silence kind of beings, tormented by strong emotional attachment with a person who in turn was attracted to somebody else.
This group of people also comprise of writers of such fiction like Stephanie Meyer herself whose belief in such an implausible romance breathed life into the likes of Edward, Bella & Jacob. We continue to celebrate romance at its most earliest stage, at its purest and most passionate stage where it is a matter of life and death. Now that vampires and werewolves have been awakened, its time for the fallen angels and surprise surprise after that!

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