So, in spite of the fact I had been laughing at them for…well, ever, I finally caved and started reading YA paranormal romance books. They range from Alex Finn’s Beastly to Gracie Ray’s Falling Slowly, to Maggie Strietfver’s Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy. After having read a few, I am faced with this question: Why do the guys get the superpowers?
In Erica Steven’s Captured, it’s Braith who’s the vampire. In The Goddess Test, Henry is the god. In Thirteen Days to Midnight, Jacob’s the immortal. Even in pop culture, Superman is the alien. And their love interests are pretty much normal girls. Yes, all the ladies have something special or unusual about them, but you have to admit, they’re a bit human.
I know that there are series where this isn’t true. In Nikki Jefford’s Spellbound Trilogy, Raj might be a warlock, but Graylee’s also a witch. Then there’s Rachel Morgan’s Creepy Hollow series. Vi’s the one who’s a faerie and Nate’s the human. And I know that there are others.
But enough with the exceptions! I’m talking about the generalizations.
So why is it that the guy usually gets to be the supernatural being and the girl gets stuck being human? Don’t get me wrong, I love a good vampire love interest. But I wonder why the werewolf girl couldn’t fall in love with a human boy more often. (Yes, I know there’s a series where that happens, too.)
Is it that teen girls relate more to an MC who’s a normal teen and falls in love with a fallen angel than a fallen angel who falls in love with a normal teen boy? (Oh wait…that’s been done too, hasn’t it?)
I do see why it would be hard to write the female love interest as the near-invincible beast while her boyfriend is a fragile mortal. (A guy always needing protection isn’t considered a particularly attractive trait.) When it’s the guy who’s the protector, you can get away with more dramatic rescues because men are supposed to protect women anyway. (My dear feminist friends, please do not take offense. I am, after all, exposed to high levels of Arthurian lore on a daily basis.) And I admit dramatic rescues can be kind of awesome when done right…
In Fanged Princess I made Hadassah, or Haddie, the vampire and her boyfriend human, in part because I wondered about this subject. But then in the Argetallam Saga, I am guilty of making Saoven the elf and Janir the one who often needs him to save her.
What do you think? Do guys get the superpowers too often? Or is the way things are just perfect?