Arranged Marriages and Marriages of Convenience

A trope is a plot device which has become familiar. Every genre of fiction has its tropes and romance is no different. Most readers have a favorite trope and some actively seek out books with a specific trope or tropes. I suspect that most authors have a favorite trope, too, or one they tend to use more frequently. I thought it would be fun to start a regular feature here on the blog called Trope Tuesday to look at tropes in my books.

Marriage often features as an event in a romance: here are three tropes associated with it.

Arranged marriage – the couple is compelled to marry, but their relationship develops into love. This is more common in historical romances.

The Princess, book #1 of the Bride Quest trilogy of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix The Beauty Bride, first book in the Jewels of Kinfairlie series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix The Rose Red Bride, book #2 in the Jewels of Kinfairlie series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix The Snow White Bride, third in the Jewels of Kinfairlie series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix

The Marriage of Convenience – a variation of the Arranged Marriage. The difference is mutual consent. The hero and heroine make a deal to be married for a set period of time or pretend to be married to achieve a goal, and subsequently fall in love. I count both Fake Date and False Engagement in this category, since the intent is similar.

The Countess, book #1 in the Bride Quest II trilogy of Scottish medieval romances, by Claire Delacroix The Snow White Bride, third in the Jewels of Kinfairlie series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix The Frost Maiden's Kiss, a medieval romance and third book in the True Love Brides series by Claire Delacroix The Crusader's Bride, a medieval romance by Claire Delacroix The Crusader's Kiss, #3 in the Champions of St Euphemia series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix Simply Irresistible, a contemporary romance by Deborah Cooke and first in the Flatiron Five series.

Runaway Bride/Groom – one protagonist flees from the altar and is pursued by the other, to their (eventual) mutual satisfaction.

The Beauty Bride, first book in the Jewels of Kinfairlie series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix The Beauty, book #2 of the Bride Quest II trilogy of Scottish medieval romances and a NYT bestselling title, by Claire Delacroix The Temptress, book #3 of the Bride Quest II trilogy of Scottish medieval romances, by Claire Delacroix

It’s interesting for me to see which tropes I use most often, by accident or design. There are some which I’ve used a lot more often than these, and we’ll get to them.

Which are your favorite tropes?

3 thoughts on “Arranged Marriages and Marriages of Convenience

  1. Deb, GREAT feature I love Trope Tuesdays! My all time favorite trope in romance is the second chance romance. Its always fun for me as a reader to learn what went wrong in the past and what goes right in the now. I do like the arranged marriage trope in historical romance especially the ones where the heroine is dead set against it!
    Thanks!

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    • Thanks Deb. It was fun to sort out my books into tropes and see which were my favorites. I love Second Chance and knew it, but didn’t realize I was so fond of Marriages of Convenience – never mind Bad Boy Heroes. We’ll talk about some more tropes next Tuesday. (I’m doing them in batches so we’re not at this for the rest of our lives.)

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