My Favorite Romantic Heroine / Hero

By Jeff Salter

This topic threw me, because – truly – I don’t read all that many books I’d characterize as romances. But while I was pondering, I remembered a movie from the early 80s with a writer, Cathy Palmer, who wins a big contest. The prize is a trip to Paris to meet her idol, the wildly popular author Margaret McMann who’s written a whole series of novels featuring the fictional heroine, Rebecca Ryan — a glamorous international spy.


Though her oppressive and cloddish husband tells her not to go, Cathy goes anyway — she earned it!

After an accident in Paris, however, Cathy becomes the character Rebecca. There are twists and turns a-plenty as her temporary delusion intersects with real-life intrigue. The hapless Alan McMann (son of the famous author) – beautifully played by Tom Conti – spends most of the movie scrambling to keep up with her. Plenty of surprises (and fun) along the way.

JoBeth Williams plays Cathy/Rebecca; I love her boldness, enthusiasm, confidence, and courage. Later, her vulnerability resurfaces as she confronts the domineering husband.

My favorite romance hero?

Cyrano is high on the list.

He’s brave, brash, and larger than life; he compensates for his appearance (huge nose) by wit and swordplay.

Falls in love but knows (or believes) Roxanne will never love him, so he helps a handsome younger guy – rather a simpleton – woo her and win her.

Cyrano keeps up the pretense because it keeps him near Roxanne, even though he can never consummate their relationship… or even let her know those were his words and feelings in the darkness.

He risks his life many times just to communicate with her. Finally in old age, Cyrano inadvertently reveals it was him all along, and then he dies.

So sad… so romantic.

Jose Ferrer version (1950)

Gerard Depardieu version (1990)


Who is YOUR favorite romantic heroine or hero?

[JLS # 246]


About Jeff Salter

Currently writing romantic comedy, screwball comedy, and romantic suspense. Fourteen completed novels and four completed novellas. Working with three royalty publishers: Clean Reads, Dingbat Publishing, & TouchPoint Press/Romance. "Cowboy Out of Time" -- Apr. 2019 /// "Double Down Trouble" -- June 2018 /// "Not Easy Being Android" -- Feb. 2018 /// "Size Matters" -- Oct. 2016 /// "The Duchess of Earl" -- Jul. 2016 /// "Stuck on Cloud Eight" -- Nov. 2015 /// "Pleased to Meet Me" (novella) -- Oct. 2015 /// "One Simple Favor" (novella) -- May 2015 /// "The Ghostess & MISTER Muir" -- Oct. 2014 /// "Scratching the Seven-Month Itch" -- Sept. 2014 /// "Hid Wounded Reb" -- Aug. 2014 /// "Don't Bet On It" (novella) -- April 2014 /// "Curing the Uncommon Man-Cold -- Dec. 2013 /// "Echo Taps" (novella) -- June 2013 /// "Called To Arms Again" -- (a tribute to the greatest generation) -- May 2013 /// "Rescued By That New Guy in Town" -- Oct. 2012 /// "The Overnighter's Secrets" -- May 2012 /// Co-authored two non-fiction books about librarianship (with a royalty publisher), a chapter in another book, and an article in a specialty encyclopedia. Plus several library-related articles and reviews. Also published some 120 poems, about 150 bylined newspaper articles, and some 100 bylined photos. Worked about 30 years in librarianship. Formerly newspaper editor and photo-journalist. Decorated veteran of U.S. Air Force (including a remote ‘tour’ of duty in the Arctic … at Thule AB in N.W. Greenland). Married; father of two; grandfather of six.
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12 Responses to My Favorite Romantic Heroine / Hero

  1. Helen Pollard says:

    I’ve never seen that film, Jeff. Sounds interesting, and I love Tom Conti, so I’ll keep an eye out for it 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. jbrayweber says:

    Sounds like a fun movie. Who doesn’t want to be an action/adventure star? Or to step into the shoes/role of someone you wouldn’t normally be and away from your comfort zone? As we say in writing, take an ordinary person and throw them into an extraordinary situation.

    Favorite romantic hero/heroine? That’s like asking me to pick my favorite child. LOL! Besides, there are too many tho choose from.

    Liked by 2 people

    • jeff7salter says:

      absolutely — too many to choose from.
      Not certain why this one popped into my head. Maybe it means I should watch it again. It’s been maybe 20 years!
      BTW, I never could find a writer for this original story, so I guess it was thrown together as a screen treatment rather than taken from a novel.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I had forgotten about Cyrano. I did like him though I wished he could have gone for the girl himself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • jeff7salter says:

      yeah, you spend the entire play (or movie) rooting for him… and also hoping Roxanne wouldn’t be soooo DENSE. But they never get it together.


  4. Carol Todd says:

    I’m going to have to watch that movie, American Dreamer. I’m pretty sure I saw it years ago – but I don’t really remember it. Sounds like something I’d like! Romantic heroes and heroines – I have no idea who to choose. There are so many, and I would bet my tastes are not really “typical.” That would indicate I should stop…here!

    I have to agree, though, with Jeff. His choices are great. My male romantic heroes run more along the lines of Indiana Jones. Sorry.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. No, that movie has eluded me but I ADORE both Jose Ferrer and Gerard Depardieu as “Cyrano”. Great choice.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Patricia Kiyono says:

    Love your choices! I’ve seen Cyrano on stage, but not on the big screen. I remember seeing the trailer for American Dreamer when it came out and thought it would be fun to see, but since I had a baby in January of that year it came out I didn’t see any movies for a while.
    See, Jeff? I knew you’d come up with something. Good for you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • jeff7salter says:

      hard to imagine that A.D. movie is already 31 years old.
      I guess I’ve seen several film versions of Cyrano, including the [pretty awful] modern version with Steve Martin as a fire chief with a long nose and the handsome suitor is a new rookie in his department.

      Liked by 1 person

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