Romantic Fiction Makes Fictional What is Often Non-fiction

In Next Year in Jerusalem! Part 2, Around Every Corner, Mystery and Romance in the Holy Land, Natalie struggles with her genuine attachment to her husband, David and her sudden overwhelmingly powerful sexual feelings toward her old boyfriend, Jack.

The plot thickens and I think the story makes great drama. But in reality is this fictional story that far from real life? Haven’t many women, and perhaps as many men, been suddenly turned on with electricity they had forgotten all about when they run into an old flame? And sometimes doesn’t it lead to trouble? Of course. We all know this is so. That’s why it can be dangerous to get ‘too close’ to the electrical source.

As I said, Natalie struggles with her feelings about David and Jack. In this scene she is examining David as he dozes on the plane as they go home from Israel. Take a look:

“Twice-a-week workouts at the local Jewish Center and a once-a-week tennis foursome kept David in excellent shape.
She scrutinized his face, noticed the shape of his nose and mouth. He was so much a part of her that it was hard to see him as a separate person. It was almost like looking at herself. His hand was so familiar, almost an extension of her being. And yet, as she looked at him she couldn’t feel the electricity she had felt with Jack. Instead, she felt comfort and ease. She wouldn’t call it exciting any more than she’d call her left arm exciting. She was thankful that it was still there doing all of its chores every day, but it was just her left arm.
Why was that? Why was it so easy to feel tingling and arousal when she thought of Jack? There was such a magical allure in the resurgence of such powerful feelings. It was almost like they were both giant magnets positioned at the precise point where the pull of attraction is the greatest. At that moment everything feels okay.”

I think this excerpt from Part 2 is very real. We often can barely appreciate are our bodies, let alone those we love. We get so used to ourselves and the important people in our lives. Maybe that is why sparks fly when new people or old people returning enter our space. They charge us up as the familiar simply can’t.

Yes, romance stories and romance books are fun to read and they are usually made up stories. But don’t for a moment think they aren’t based on the urges and passions that real people have. If they weren’t, why would we want to read them?

For more on Natalie, David and Jack, watch this video:

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