Please give a warm welcome to Christine S. Feldman, who stops by Book Lovers Inc. to celebrate the release of The Bargain! Christine is a tomboy wannabe just like me and here she talks about Tomboys & Romance and why it works so well. Join us and if you answer Christine’s question at the end you could even win a copy of The Bargain! Christine, take it away!
I am not a tomboy, not really. Nor am I a girly-girl, although I do occasionally like to sneak a fancy gown into a dressing room and try it on just for fun, even if I can’t even begin to think of anyplace I’d ever wear something like that (although part of me thinks it would be fun to get all dolled up with a tiara or something and go grocery shopping, just to see the looks on other people’s faces. Is that weird?).
So I guess I fall somewhere in between the two on the spectrum of girliness, which is probably true of lots of women.
But sometimes I wish I were a tomboy, because I think tomboys are cool.
And if you disagree, I’ve got a few names to throw your way like Arya Stark, Katniss Everdeen, and—one of my personal favorites—Watts from Some Kind of Wonderful.
I like that they can hold their own in any traditionally male-dominated activity. I like that they march to the beat of their own drummer—quite literally, in Watts’ case. And I like the fact that many of them seem to share my aversion to things like spending twenty minutes on your hair in the morning with a curling iron, because that blankety-blank piece of beauty equipment has always given me fits. Let’s just say I’ve been burned. Emotionally and physically.
But do tomboys make good romantic heroines?
Of course! Once again, look at Watts in Some Kind of Wonderful (you can tell I love that movie, can’t you?), Jess in Bend it Like Beckham, or Jo March in Little Women. Or even Joey Potter on Dawson’s Creek; hey, that girl had all the guys eating out of her hand, although her tomboyishness seemed less obvious by the end of the series.
The heroine of The Bargain is a tomboy, too, and while she can wield a power saw the way Katniss can wield a bow, she is painfully awkward in social situations—particularly those that involve men. What makes things especially hard for her is the fact that the man she’s secretly pined for since high school is her boss, Drew, but she can’t seem to say more than two words to him unless they’re work related.
She’s in need of a change in her life, and a catalyst for that change shows up in the form of her boss’s older brother, Michael:
Michael Kingston. Even if you never spoke to him in school, you knew who he was. To say he had a reputation would be putting it mildly. No respect for authority, unruly and unpredictable. She thought he might have even been kicked out of school at some point. But he was wildly popular. Every girl wanted him, and many got to have him — for a little while. A player was what Shannon would have called him. Sex-on-a-stick was what many others said instead. And giggled.
Michael’s actually in need of some changes of his own, and underneath his sarcastic exterior lies a man full of regrets. He and Shannon initially clash over his brother Drew, but as they spend more time around each other, antagonism evolves into something else, and Shannon begins to realize that maybe Drew isn’t the right man for her after all.
And this tomboy might just sweep a certain playboy off his feet.
Tomboy Shannon Mahoney has always been a lot more comfortable with things like power tools than she is with high heels or lipstick, and she often wishes she could reinvent herself and finally tell her perfect boss, Drew Kingston, that she has had a crush on him since high school. But she is just as tongue tied and awkward around him now as she ever was, and long-familiar patterns are hard things from which to break free…
Until one day Drew’s estranged older brother Michael comes to town, bringing with him a surprising opportunity for Shannon.
Ladies’ man Michael is a former bad boy looking for redemption. He is desperate to atone for past mistakes that he made with his family, but younger brother Drew has cut him out of his life and refuses to even speak to him. Which means Michael needs help getting to Drew.
And so he approaches Shannon with a proposition: if she will get Drew to agree to hear him out, Michael will mentor Shannon in how to win his brother’s heart. Suspicious of Michael’s motives, Shannon initially enters into the bargain just to make sure Michael isn’t actually in town to cause trouble for Drew, but the two unlikely allies are surprised to discover that despite butting heads at first, they are beginning to enjoy each other’s company far more than either of them expected.
And Shannon starts to realize that maybe love isn’t about reinventing yourself after all. It’s about finding your perfect match.
Christine S. Feldman writes both novels and feature-length screenplays, and, to her great delight, she has placed in screenwriting competitions on both coasts—and has even won a couple of them. In 2012 one of her screenplays was featured as a staged reading in New York City at the Gotham Screen International Film Festival, and later that same year she signed her first publishing contract for her debut novel, Coming Home, with a second one to follow this summer. When she is not writing, she is teaching kindergarten, puttering around in her garden, ballroom dancing with her husband, or doing research for her next project.
Connect with Christine at:
Christine has generously offered Kindle copy of The Bargain to a lucky commenter!
All you have to do is leave a comment and tell us: Who is your favorite tomboy in film or literature and why?
(You can read our full giveaway policy here)
Please be sure to include a valid email address in the comment form (need not be in the actual body of the comment).
This giveaway is open to all!
Giveaway ends on Saturday, 3rd August 2013, and we will announce the winner on Sunday.