Sarah’s Gmail quote of the day was: “I am the literary equivalent of a Big Mac and fries.” – Stephen King.
That started us thinking: What does that say about romance authors? What’s their food item literary equivalent? Well, fear not, readers! Trust the Smart Bitches to come up with the perfect food counterpart for your favorite authors.
Nora Roberts: Ice-cream. You can always have ice-cream. Sometimes it’s a little bland or frosty, and sometimes it’s just what you needed when it’s hot as hell outside. Ice-cream is rarely, if ever, bad.
Cassie Edwards: Potted Meat Food product. It’s marketed as food, and it tries very, very hard to be food, but ultimately, it’s Food Product. Frighteningly ubiquitous, and therefore even more terrifying.
Laura Kinsale: Saffron. Rare and exclusive, but packs a huge wallop when used.
Laurell K. Hamilton: Cilantro. Some people LOVE her to the point of OMG obsession, and some people cannot stand her and think she tastes like soap.
Jennifer Crusie: Obvious choice: cherry pie.
Loretta Chase: Coconut milk. Looks like cow’s milk, but most decidedly is not cow’s milk, and adds incredible richness and flavor to any dish.
Julia Quinn: Trifle. Light, happy, not too maudlin, not too filling to be an after-dinner treat.
Catherine Coulter: Deep fried Twinkies. Once upon a time, it was a good junk food. Now? Not good at all, despite the potential.
Lisa Kleypas: A basic chocolate layer cake. Sometimes absolutely spectacular, sometimes pretty bland and chewy with frosting that’s too sweet, but dude, it’s still chocolate cake, so we’re having a piece.
Anne Stuart: Dark, dark chocolate with random habaneros hidden inside.
Sharon and Tom Curtis aka Laura London aka Robin James: An incredibly intricate, arcane cake that looks glazed and normal on the outside, then you cut a piece and holy crap there’s fondant and buttercream with fruit and about 18 layers of 1/2” thick rich cake in between, all sliced so thin it looked like someone used a razor.
Barbara Samuel: A really, really high-quality brownie. Deceptively simple ingredients, but incredibly dense and delicious.
Patricia Gaffney: A big bowl of hearty stew that’ll warm you to your toes and make you feel good. Unless it’s the older bodice ripper novels she wrote for Leisure, in which case, she’s cheese. Perhaps Swiss, for the plot holes. (We’re not necessarily knocking them, mind you. Candy owns almost all of them, and loves them all.)
Dara Joy: American Cheese. Cheesy, yet weirdly plastic, completely unearthly, not quite a food—yet a total guilty pleasure, should you choose to debase your palate so.
Connie Mason: Casu marzu. Cheese so bad, it can actually make you go BLIND.
Sharon Shinn: Sour cream blueberry muffins. People think she’s a quickbread, but really, they’re giant cupcakes without frosting that people justify to themselves as Not Cake because they eat them for breakfast and get them two tables over from the cupcakes. Some Bujold and Asaro novels qualify, too.
Judith McNaught: Grocery-store cupcakes. Sometimes, you just crave them, so you buy a box and eat, like, a dozen in a row. And you suddenly realize that you feel a bit boofy because they’re way too sweet and greasy, and not only that, they have the same basic taste, even though they claim to have different flavors and frostings. See also: Jude Deveraux and Johanna Lindsey.
Kathleen Woodiwiss: Chinese American food. Sometimes it hits the spot, but too often it panders to what people *think* Chinese food should be, so it’s way too salty, way too greasy, and WHY IN THE SHIT IS SOY SAUCE IN EVERYTHING? Just because it’s Chinese food doesn’t mean you slather soy sauce on all of it, you goddamn infidels.
Doughnut: JR Ward. Jhelli philled dhoughnutz, phull of ahngzt, pain and sadism—oops, sorry, zsadism, all skull-shaped with frosting fangs and tiny candy shitkicker boots, trying really hard to look hardcore and scary, but DUDE. It’s a DOUGHNUT. Sure, it’s tasty. It may be a Voodoo Doughtnut, even, and God knows Candy’s fond of those things—in fact, she loves them so much, she got married in the store. But c’mon. They’re DOUGHNUTS, PEOPLE. GET A GRIP.
Bertrice Small: Tex Mex. When done right, it can be yummy, but when mass-produced, contains way too much sour cream sauce and a lot of heat that’s weirdly flavorless.
Harlequin Presents: Cup O’ Noodles ramen. They’re highly standardized, they’re everywhere, they’re cheap, they aren’t especially filling, and nutritionally, they’re about the equivalent of a bag of rocks (actually, the bag of rocks might beat the ramen, because the dirt clinging to the rocks might provide a little B12), but they work if you need calories, and some of the variations can be pretty tasty.
Danielle Steel: Cheez doodles.
Susan Elizabeth Phillips: Tortilla chips. Delicious and addictive, but: Blue corn? White? Yellow? Low salt? Tequila salt? Extra salt? Pretty much about the same.
Diana Palmer: Biscuits. Made by virgins. Who are mistaken for whores by hard-faced Texan cowboys with women issues the size of, uh, Texas.
Stephanie Laurens’ Cynster series: Pocky. There’s Men’s Pocky, Almond Pocky, Strawberry Pocky, Green Tea Pocky, Coconut Pocky, Milk Pocky, Honey Pocky, Grape Pocky—Pocky Pocky Pocky. All variations of “sweet crap coating a pretzel stick.” And really, if “sweet crap coating a pretzel stick” doesn’t accurately describe all the humpings-on in a Laurens novel, we don’t know what does.
Edited to add:
Oops! Forgot to include this author in the entry:
Linda Howard: Foot-long hot dog with bullet-flavored relish and a lot of mustard. Can’t quite wrap your lips around that monster? TRY HARDER. RELAX. You’ll love it even as it hurts you. Really.