The Oral History Podcast, Episode 15: Romantic Tropes


In this episode of The Oral History Podcast, we depart from our usual analysis of YA literature and instead discuss adult romance-novel tropes that persistently beguile and bedevil us. If you’ve got a romance trope that you love (or love to hate) we’d love to hear about it. Find us on Twitter at @CarrieMesrobian and @ChristaDesir, or send us an email: feedback AT theoralhistorypodcast DOT com.


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Our Current Reads


Baader-Meinhof: The Inside Story of the Red Army Faction, by Stephan Aust
Orleans, by Sherri L. Smith


Luckiest Girl Alive, by Jessica Knoll
The Smaller Evil, by Stephanie Kuehn

   “Translation: All this twaddle is merely saying, ‘Hi, I’m Andreas Baader, a sociopathic dick.'”



What the hell is a “manther” anyway?
The Name of the Rose, by Umberto Eco
Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon
Roxane Gay’s Outlander recaps: here, here, & here


                          “I feel so objectified.”


Romance Trope: The Virgin Hero 

Off-Campus, by Amy Jo Cousins
Taking Him, by Jackie Ashenden
Unclaimed, by Courtney Milan

Romance Trope: The Indestructible Male

The Master by, Kresley Cole
Say Yes to the Marquess, by Tessa Dare
The Spymaster’s Lady, by Joanna Bourne

Want more? Subscribe to our accompanying TinyLetter for further discussion on this episode!


“Your torture’s got nothing on Carrie and Christa’s Midwestern accents, Le Chiffre!”







About This Podcast

Carrie Mesrobian and Christa Desir are two good friends who happen to be YA authors interested in discussing sex. The idea for The Oral History Podcast came out of their daily dog-walking conversations when they realized that others might be as interested in this topic as they were. Each podcast focuses on a topic of sexuality in the lives of teens. Previous podcasts have included discussions about masturbation, first kisses, cheating, illicit relationships, oral sex, and “girl talk” to name a few. Frank, engaging, and filthy, these two podcasters will leave you laughing, blushing, or ready to start writing sex scenes in your novel in an authentic and excellent way.



About the Author:

Christa Desir writes contemporary YA fiction. Her forthcoming novel, Other Broken Things, will be published in January 2016 by Simon Pulse. Visit her online at, and follow her on Twitter at @ChristaDesir. Carrie Mesrobian is the author of three YA novels, most recently Cut Both Ways (2015). Visit her online at, and find her on Twitter at @CarrieMesrobian.

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