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Saturday, July 19, 2014

Saturday Discussion: Second Chance at Love or Not a Chance in H*ll?

I was originally going to call this post, "Are They Experienced," but that's a whole other topic. This week, we're talking about reunited lovers, exes who aren't so ex after all, and other variations on the theme. Is romance lovelier the second time around for once-upon-a-time lovers, or is a chance at romance strictly a one shot deal? 

Let's take a look at the various permutations. Youthful lovers separated by disapproving parents, circumstance or historical events, is a theme popular long before the written word. All the thwarted passion of young love, torn apart by a cruel world or crueler parents, never fading through the intervening years. They've loved and lost, but, older and wiser, is this their time at last? Contemporary heroes or heroines returning to the small towns they once left behind, and the lovers they never forgot stand shoulder to shoulder here with their historical counterparts forced into dynastic marriages or second sons sent to war, the sea, or off to find their fortunes. The separation may not have been their idea, but the reconciliation? That's entirely within their grasp. 

On the other side of the coin, we have heroes or heroines who did want out the first time. Contemporary divorced couples, or estranged historical ones may not have been compatible in their first relationship, but some time and distance may give them the skills they need to turn a past love into a present one and secure their future. Such couples may have a child in common, a constant bond no matter how many miles apart they may have lived, and if the kids, whether child or adult, decide to play matchmaker, mom and dad may see past their differences and find love once again. 

In real life, there's often a reason exes are exes, but in romance, love conquers all. What are your favorite reunited lovers romance novels? 


  1. I'm going to have to say "Maybe This Time" by Jennifer Crusie, which adds a little bit of ghost story to the reunion. In the first chapter, it's clear to see why the hero & heroine should be together but also why they split up in the first place.

  2. Sherry Thomas excels at this trope! Her first three novels are all reunion stories: Private Arrangements, Delicious, and Not Quite a Husband.

  3. Corrina, showing why the couple's relationship didn't work the first time but will the second sounds like genius. I'm intrigued about the ghost story, as well.

  4. Stephanie, Sherry Thomas is amazing at this. Private Arrangements is one of my all time favorites. Delicious despair to be sure, but the ending is oh so worth the pain.

  5. One of my favorites for this is A Counterfeit Betrothal by Mary Balogh. The estranged couple are the parents of a daughter, who creates the betrothal of the title to see how that might bring her parents together. And then it's the story of what happens to both couples....

  6. Emmel, that sounds like a wonderful pair of stories in one. Definitely going to have to dive into this one, and of course, it's Mary Balogh, so it's got to be good.

  7. I love Lisa Kleypas's Again The Magic in which the young lovers are separated because the heroine is the daughter of an earl and the hero is a stable lad. The hero makes his fortune in America and returns and they rekindle their love, although there is plenty of angst before they finally have a HEA.

  8. Kristan Higgins actually has 2 very good ones. This year's Waiting On You and My One and Only from 2011. I highly recommend anything by Kristan. She is an auto-buy & auto-read author for me. Maybe This Time was another good one, Corrina!

  9. This is one of my favorite tropes if done right! These are a few books that I love and have read multiple times (these are the only ones I can remember off the top of my head LOL) Somewhere I'll Find You by Lisa Kleypas, When the Rogue Returns by Sabrina Jeffries, Passions of a Wicked Earl by Lorraine Heath... :)



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