April 20th is National Look-Alike Day, so I thought it would be the perfect time to talk about twins (and triplets, and quadruplets…) in romance. Mostly I’m thinking babies here, although I’ve read (and written) some wonderful twin stories with adults as the theme (Redeeming the Rancher and Mistletoe Daddy with twin heroines Alexis and Vivian Grainger) were a lot of fun to write. And I’ve got babies on my mind, what with Grandbaby #3 due in a little more than a month!
At Harlequin Love Inspired, the editors are always pushing tropes. The more writers can cram into one story, the better. And twins is huge—so much so that I decided to put four-month-old twins Dante and Ariella (Ari) into the book I’m currently working on, Book Six of Rocky Mountain Family with the Winslow siblings. They bring automatic conflict into the plot, especially in this case, where hero Frost Winslow didn’t even know he was a father until heroine Zoey Lane shows up in town with his twins.
So what is it about twins that draws readers in? Two for the price of one? Double the cuteness, double the fun? Yet, let’s face it….in real life, the first response to the ultrasound that reveals two beating hearts may be a sense of shock more than anything. Two babies is twice as much work. Twice as many diapers. Twice as much feeding time. And that’s nothing to say of lack of sleep.
Of course, in romance novels we get to pick and choose what goes into our scenes, so we can skip over some of those sleepless nights in favor of days of fun snuggling with happy babies. I do usually throw a little colic and diaper changing in just so it isn’t too easy for my characters, but it really is double the fun because each of the babies his his/her own personality. And their interactions with each baby allows the mom and dad to learn more about themselves and God.
With that being said from an author’s perspective, do you as a reader enjoy books with multiples? Babies or adults? Why or why not?