Romance After 40?

Lately I’ve been craving a different kind of heroine, someone with a little experience under her belt … or her waistline. Romances in which the main characters are over 40. Don’t get me wrong. I enjoy the under-40 romance, even as young as NA and YA. After all, a good story is a good story. But under-40 is easy to find. Over-40, not so much. 

I loved Sandy James’ Turning Thirty-Twelve and the movies It’s Complicated and Enough Said. So I decided to seek out more like them instead of waiting for them to fall into my lap. I searched online for “romances with older heroines” and was thrilled to find actual lists of these types of books. But I was disappointed when most of the recommended books had characters in their 30s (That’s older? Really?) or the older characters were actually secondary characters. The exception is this list on Dear Author. It’s short, but it’s a starting point.

Why am I so intrigued with this age group? It’s a fascinating period in women’s lives. They’re reevaluating where they’ve been and what they’ve accomplished in their careers and personal lives. They’re dealing with wacko hormonal changes that for good or bad color the way they think and act. Those with children are done or almost done with child-rearing and are enjoying (hopefully) a new kind of freedom. Many women experience a rebirth of sorts and make major life changes. Sounds like the perfect breeding ground for romantic conflict.

I’d really like to hear from you. Do you like the over-40 heroine and hero? Hate ’em? Can you take ’em or leave ’em? I’d also love some recommendations. Thirty-somethings and secondary characters need not apply.

This post first appeared at The Contemporary Romance Café.

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