Friday, March 31, 2006

Politically (Sorta) Correct




It's no secret that I'm a fan of Kathleen Eagle's writing. One of the things I like best is how she portrays heroes who are American Indian. Her men display strength by vanquishing inner conflict, rather than wielding native machismo as do their Wild West stereotypes.




Who are some of your favorite ethnic heroes in romance novels?

What makes you feel they're portrayed accurately?


BTW, Kathleen gave me the skinny: she refers to her heroes as American Indian. We need to have her ask her husband, Clyde, whether there's a Lakota word for snaxy.


Encore! Our boy Nathan makes for the perfect American Indian cover hero, no? I haven't read "Swift Horse," and don't mean to imply Edwards' heroes are stereotypical.

Encore Due! Nahdala's put together a stunning collection of "Covers Created to Make you Blush at the Check-out Counter." Check em out at http://www.amazon.com/gp/richpub/listmania/fullview/R1ZDILTPMRYBH9/104-8888410-5311137?%5Fencoding=UTF8 . Thanks, Nahdala!

22 comments:

amy*skf said...

Yikes--I have been computerless for the last two days, blue screen--the works. But I'm back and I've missed lots. And now I can't remember the question...so I'll post this and then re-read the question.

amy*skf said...

Okay--I'm drawing a blank. Perhaps my book reading is horribly one dimensional, or I have a really lousy memory.

Hey Mandacoll, I actually would be the one with the lampshade on my head. Frightening.

Amanda said...

Welcome back, Amy! I HATE it when the computer doesn't work...guess am getting addicted...

As for Ethnic heroes, I just read Loretta Chase's CAPTIVES OF THE NIGHT a few weeks ago and Ismal is supersnaxylicious....especially when he finally reveals his origins and wears his native costume...

amy*skf said...

Supersnaxylicious--OMG!Mandacoll--Expealidocious(sp?)Eat your heart out Mary Poppins.

Michelle, is that the snaxy Nathan Kamp on Cassie Edwards book?

Stacy~ said...

I admit to being bad at remembering these kinda details too. But I like the idea of a character where the author provides interesting background on their ethnicity and traditions.

Yep Amy, that's Nathan. In another shameless plug for myself, I created a Listmania list of Nathan Kamp covers. Let me know if you'd like the link :)

amy*skf said...

Doh! Of course.
And Stacy, love the sunset pic.

Stacy~ said...

LOL. Just checking ;) I guess if I'm gonna admit to being shameless, I gotta follow through.

Here ya go. There's actually 2 lists cuz he has more than 25 covers....

http://www.amazon.com/gp/richpub/listmania/fullview/RGYL5HD83TH8O/103-6745971-0975837

and

http://www.amazon.com/gp/richpub/listmania/fullview/R3V7YMEJC6V4FJ/103-6745971-0975837


Glad you like the pic. Took awhile to figure all this avatar/techy stuff out.

Amanda said...

Dang, Stacy, you've been busy!

LOL, Amy, I try...and snaxy is such a delicious term...

Stacy~ said...

Took me awhile to get that list compiled, but it was worth it.

Snaxy is a word that makes me hungry ;)

amy*skf said...

Stacy, I haven't tried the lists yet--maybe Michelle could do a link--I know she's still on vaca.

I saw Gerard Butler last night in Lara Croft blah blah blah Cradle of Life--I only watched the good parts--it was late and I was tired, but man, he's fabulous.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Hiya, Bellas! I'm back and taking a sec to check in. I so cannot thank you enough for stopping by every day, and am totally jazzed at all the new names and referrals around the joint. Hate that we didn't get to talk yet, and hope you'll come back and say more.

Oh, boyo. Do I have some stuff I'm dying to talk about, not the least of which are the wicked Jamaican men. My God. And such beautiful women.

Anyway, it's a treat to sit back and read the last couple days' posts, and to catch up with you.

And, if you check back a couple days to the post that wasn't ("On the Cusp of the Duke") you'll see a Nathan photo that has to qualify him as at least a little Italian, or at least honorarily so. Loved snaxilicious. May I add: molto snaxissimo?

Buona Notte, Bellas!

Tara Marie said...

Hi Michelle...

So, are you saying Cassie Edwards is one of the authors weilding native machismo? If so I agree--LOL.

I don't necessarily like "ethnic" romances, they often become too stereotypical and I find that completely annoying.

Amanda said...

Molto snaxissimo---I LOVE it!

Just remembered another "ethnic" book: Edith Layton's GYPSY LOVER. Daffyd was...well...molto snaxissimo. And Judith Ivory/Judy Cuevas's hero in BLACK SILK--HE WAS Russian and to die for. (Nobody does Russian heroes anymore.)

Also, question: Are vampires an ethnicity? If so, I'll add Wrath and Rhage...

Welcome back, Michelle!

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Oooh, Tara. Hiya. You gotta forgive me, cause I haven't read Cassie, just saw the Nathan Kamp cover and had to use it. I thought the cover did give a stereotypical impression, but not sure, cause, again, didn't read the book.

I do like the discussion you raise about ethnicity getting annoying when it's done wrong. That was one of the points I was hoping might come up. Ethnic "paneling," as it were. You get a Highlander who occasionally "kens" something and acts all braw, but that's all we get. Or a French guy who speaks perfect English, only to say "mais oui" and "daccord," once in a while, and who also flirts outrageously and dresses that way, too.

It's wonderful when someone writes a brogue well, or uses another language in a novel, but it's incredibly trick to get right, dontcha think?

Manda! LOVE Daffyd!!!! Interesting when the term Gypsy can be used because it's contextual and Edith Layton makes clear the prejudices of the day, but the attractive machismo that goes along with the "branding." And if vampires are ethnic, sign me up, baby, cause I'm so digging on Z!

I wonder...should we consider all British characters ethnic? I'm totally all over the hero of "Lord Perfect" these days.

It's great to be back. Yahooo!

Kathleen Eagle said...

Hi Michelle!
This is my debut. I've never posted to a blog before. Never ever anywhere.

I just (finally!) turned in the ms for RIDE A PAINTED PONY, due out in December. The hero is Lakota, and it's a contemporary set on my husband's reservation--Standing Rock. The heroine is white. Yep, so am I. I've been published for over 20 years, and this is a relationship the majority of my books have been about. I worry about a couple of things--no, lots of things, but two that seem to fit this discussion would be 1) repeating myself, and 2)stereotyping. I've been married to an Indian man for 35 years, but that doesn't guarantee anything. I love Westerns--movies, novels, even the reruns on "Encore Westerns"--have since I was very young. My brain has been steeped in stereotypes, just like everyone else's. For writers of commercial fiction, there's always a strong temptation to put reader expectations above all else, and to some extent readers expect stereotyping. The "noble savage" is a stereotype, but there's a market for it. I try to draw on life rather than fiction when I write a book, which means that when I'm building a character, I'm thinking of real people, not paper of celluloid ones.

That said, I still have to come up with characters who are larger than life--that's what makes them entertaining. And I'll do the sexy cowboy, the rebel, the tortured soul, the loner--guys women fantasize about. Those are prototypes, though, not stereotypes.

I think I just rambled on longer than blogging calls for. Ah, well. At least I can say I came, I saw, and finally I blogged.

Stacy~ said...

Wow Kathleen, you bring up a lot of interesting points. I guess, silly me, just assumed that you would be an authority on your husband's particular background, but what you say makes sense - with t.v. and books and movies portraying characters with a lot of stereotypes, it's inevitable that some of that would merge into your own experiences.

Thank you for sharing your insight from a career spanning over 2 decades - and welcome to the blogging world. It's a fun place to visit, especially this one. My vocabulary is growing LOL

amy*skf said...

Yah! Michelle is back. Can't wait to hear all about Jamaica.

And hello Kathleen, glad you've blogged on, just so you know, it does get somewhat addictive simply because I always feel as if I'm among friends. And no one interrupts me when I rant and or rave.

Molto snaxissimo! Brava, Michelle.

Amanda said...

Michelle, so right about the fine line between ethnic done well and ethnic done horribly wrong. It's especially tricky I think because on a certain level the appeal of ethnic heroes is in their "otherness."

When an ethnic character is interchangeable with the "non-ethnic" characters except for the occasional "Gallic Shrug" or "Aye" it smacks of tokenism. (Though, I suppose one could argue that by making the ethnic and non-ethnic characters so similar the author is pointing out that we are all human underneath it all.)

But, when ethnicity is woven into the hero's characterization it goes into making that character an individual, whose ethnicity is something that not only sets them apart from other characters, but is part of what "makes him tick."

Very interesting, Kathleen, about your fears of absorbing the stereotypes from pop culture. But since you are aware of the dangers there, you've already won half the battle.

Amanda said...

Kathleen, when I say "you've already won half the battle" I don't mean you aren't winning the whole battle...One bad thing about posting on blogs is that sinking feeling you get in the pit of your stomach hours later when you think "I hope she didn't take that in a bad way--that's not how I meant it at all. Oh no! Must log on and make sure she knows!" At least that's how it is for me:) Anyway, I meant it as a compliment--that since you realize the pull toward using sterotypes you are a step ahead of everyone else...Okay, I'll shut up now...before I start babbling...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Babble away, Manda! Sheesh, I wish all my posts were as coherent as yours. BTW, we talked a week or so ago about how we all get agita about our posts after we write em. Is it a girl thing? The chewing over and over on what we wrote, agonizing about whether our post was misunderstood?

Yesterday, I commented to a post that someone wrote about this particular blog, and I'm still concerned she might have thought I was shutting her up. I hate hate hate the inability to write nuance on the net. Or maybe it's just my inability to write nuance...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Kathleen! Congrats and welcome to cyberspace. Toldja you'd love it! This is the best bunch of chicks to have a first time with. We may not send you flowers in the morning, but we totally still respect you.

I was lucky enough to attend a writing retreat given by Kathleen and some of her pals last fall. She spoke a bit about "Ride a Painted Pony" (flippin awesome title, no?) and it is gonna be so cool to see how the piece worked out.

Hoping you'll guestblog for us, Kathleen. I, for one, love to hear about the guys you write, and about the types of guys who've had impacts on your heroes.

And your Barbie collection, cause I'm a Barbie girl, too.

Thanks for stopping by. We love long posts here, and hope you'll find how nice it is to blog on when one's avoiding writing and deadline in general.

Amanda said...

LOL, Michelle! I think it must be a girl thing. And I completely agree about nuance...there is no emoticon as revealing as the human face...

Thanks about my posts--of course since I'm not working I've got a lot of time to proof them;)