Erotic Romance

A Little Sass by Jennifer Probst

Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Who doesn’t like a little sass in their romance novels?

Give me a mouthy, snarky heroine pit against an alpha type male and I go liquid. A woman who doesn’t cower or duck her head when challenged. A female who may have her stomach quivering with nerves but gets right back in the hero’s face and sneers.

As a reader and a writer, I love the dynamics of smart, sarcastic dialogue. Everyone knows a good sexy argument is like foreplay. Dialogue warms up the reader and the characters as they play a verbal game of thrust and parry...which usually ends up where it should.

In bed.

I had a blast writing The Marriage Trap, the second in my Marriage to a Billionaire series. Maggie Ryan is everything a good heroine should be: all mushy on the inside with issues galore, a smart mouth, and the will to challenge my dominating hero. The dialogue between Maggie and the delectable Count is sharp and filled with sexual tension at every turn. As a voracious reader of contemporary, erotic romance, I love a conversation that works on every level. Here’s a short excerpt to whet your appetite:

“I can play nice for a week.”

“I’ll believe it when I see it,” he murmured. “Be sure you don’t try to deck me when I kiss you.” He looked thoughtful, and Maggie almost gulped with unease. “In fact, perhaps I should kiss you right here. Right now. For practice, of course.”

She hissed like a ticked-off snake. “I can manage not to jump when a man touches me.”

“I’m not convinced.” He stalked over and invaded her personal space. The heat of his skin pulled her in.

“One slipup and this charade ends. I can’t afford it. Especially when a simple kiss beforehand may make the difference.”

'I’m real good at faking it.” She tossed him a mocking smile. The delicious scents of musk and man beckoned her to steal a sample. Her heart tripped at the thought of him calling her bluff, which only made her more obnoxious. “No one will ever know I’m not interested in kissing you. No need to put ourselves through a practice run.”

He studied her in silence and she began to relax. “Let’s test the theory, shall we?”

He grasped her shoulders and yanked her forward. She collided with a rock of carved muscle, and her arms came up in automatic protest to push against his chest. When she hit resistance, her fingers gripped the soft material of his T-shirt. His feet straddled hers and kept her off balance. His lips stopped inches from her own.

“Take your hands off of me.” Sweat beaded her brow. Oh, God, what if she melted and looked like an idiot?

What if she moaned when those full lips slid over hers? She could not respond. She could not respond. She could not— “What are you so nervous about?” Humor danced in his eyes. “You’ve done this a million times, remember?”

“I don’t like to be manhandled,” she shot back.

His lip quirked. He lowered his voice to a husky purr that promised her pure bodily pleasure. “Maybe you haven’t had the right man handling you.”

“Give me a break. Do women really fall for that line? Because if they do, they must come from the land of the stupid. Take your hands—”

His lips covered hers.

What type of heroine turns you on? Sassy and strong willed? Sweet and spunky? Prim and proper? Shy and innocent? Come share with me! I’m celebrating my release week so one lucky reader who comments on my blog will be randomly selected to win a free copy of The Marriage Trap!  Good luck!