Odes and Such from Melissa Blue

AuthorPic_Melissa_BlueI’ve recently been on a reading binge. Read about six books in three days. Three of them just blew my socks off, which is hard to do because I am a very picky reader. The absolute winners all had one thing in common—characters I loved…or a begrudging respect. Let’s take Halfway to the Grave. (Fabulous book and if you haven’t read it then you should.) I knew from the first page that Cat would drive me nuts at some point. She’s strong-willed, naïve and makes rash decisions.

So, why did I stick around?

I don’t have to like a character to root for them. Her backstory was compelling, she was funny and…I heard the hero is pretty much Spike from Buffy. And he’s a character I can write odes to. Bones had me at ‘Hey, luv.’ He’s not a likeable character at all. He’s a vampire. The kind that drinks straight from the tap as you will. He doesn’t harbor any guilt over this. He kidnaps the heroine and makes her kill vamps with him. From there the story unravels with interesting twists and turns.

Don’t care one peep about all that, because I stuck around for the characters. I lost sleep so I could find out how Bones and Cat made out. When I was done I scrambled for the next book in the series and gobbled it up just as fast. I needed to know if Cat and Bones were all right. Cat grew and wasn’t as naïve. She definitely continued to make rash decisions, but they were still, for the most part, for the right reasons. Bones, well, he’s Spike so yeah I adored him as the bad boy.

At the heart of it these were complex characters, and the author made me care about what happened to them. I yelled at my computer as I read. I cheered. I sniffled or laughed. I was completely wrapped up. Well written characters can make the world around you just fade away and what happens on the pages becomes tantamount. Let’s be honest, I’ve never met a reader who loved a plot so much they’ve written odes to it.

Come on, Barrons, anyone? Just the mention of his name can start a very heated debate and, ya know, odes. As I look at all the books on my keeper shelf none of them are there because of the story. I keep them because I want to revisit the characters. I want to experience what they experienced. In a very strange book-nerd way I want to spend time with them again. There’s the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher, the Three Sisters Trilogy by La Nora, Natural Born Charmer by SEP. Currently rereading Undomestic Goddess by Sophie Kinsella (It has one of the best sex scenes ever. EVER.) The list is long but not every book has made it. But my keepers…you’ll have to pry from my cold dead fingers.

Who are some of your favorite characters you’d write odes to?

FinalBadBoyND2_AReTo find out more about Melissa Blue you can check her out online at these places:




Melissa Blue’s writing career started on a typewriter one month after her son was born. This would have been an idyllic situation for a writer if it had been 1985, not 2004. Eventually she upgraded to a computer. She’s still typing away on the same computer, making imaginary people fall in love.


Odes and Such from Melissa Blue — 10 Comments

  1. Thanks for coming, Melissa. I wish I were more like you in sticking around for characters I don’t like. Unless there’s a pretty strong glimmer things will improve, I’m guilty of not finishing the story.

  2. Melissa, welcome to the Cafe! I’m all about the characters in a story. Their growth and journey is far more important to me than what is happening around them. Whether I love or hate a character I need to be invested in them somehow. It might be a likeable protagonist or a villain with whom I can empathize.

    • Thank you for the welcome!

      I love a good villain and by good I mean one I can’t wait for them to show up on the page. Not that good guys are boring. It’s just that sometimes the bad guy has a little more crunch to him.

    • Samantha, that scene pays off because you know the heroine needs to take a moment. She has to stop and smell the roses. It’s the perfect sex scene for her as a character. I still remember I’d finished Can You Keep a Secret? and that first chapter just blew me away. I have never laughed so hard while reading a book since. But the Undomestic Goddess just hit me in all the right places. And then that sex scene happened. One of the best. lol

  3. Welcome to the Café, Melissa! Yep, I’m exactly like you–if the characters make me feel something, then the story itself becomes secondary. Love, hate, anger, despair, joy, tension… whatever the emotion, I need characters to hit my heart in some way, or I get bored and DNF.

    P.S. Now I have to read Undomestic Goddess. Memorable sex scenes FTW!

    P.P.S. Best of luck to you and BAD BOY NEXT DOOR–that cover is HAWT! 😀

    • Thank you, Stacy!

      As to your P.S. You should. It’s slapstick, but that ook has charm and heart.

      As to your P.P.S Thank you! Took me a day or two to make the cover. So, I’m glad you think it’s hot.

  4. Great post Melissa!

    Possibly the nerdiest example going, but the bad boy I’ll never get over is Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights. Let’s face it, the dude’s a controlling, vindictive, slightly psychotic a-hole, but damn is he sexy. Whenever I re-read the novel I scour each page for some slightly redeeming detail, and even though there really aren’t many, every time it mentions his dark eyes I am on a runaway train to swoonsville!

    • Thank you, Rebecca!

      I’m going to have to confess…I’ve never read Wuthering Heights. I tried way back when. Twice. lol But, Sunset Embrace has an opening with the kind of hero you’d wish would get ran over because he’s just horrible to the heroine. He has his reasons, but a-hole to the tenth power. I swoon every time I read that sucker and I’ve read it loads of times. lol

      We all have that one. :)

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