Let’s Talk Romance Tropes: Amnesia


by Kate

Readers, amnesia is making a comeback.

Once the purview of Presents titles, amnesia became associated with over-used plots, fainting heroines, and dated heroes, and has been mocked mercilessly since both inside the romance world and out.

But there’s a seductive quality to the opportunity of a do-over, a second chance to do it right – especially when it comes to matters of the heart.Who hasn’t thought wistfully of a past relationship or lover and thought, ‘if I had the chance to do it again…’

Life doesn’t often give us that chance. Fiction, however, and romance fiction in particular, does. Amnesia, when done right, in the hands of a controlled author, can be a very powerful tool.

Like any reader, I’m susceptible.

Escape has two titles that deal with amnesia currently out, and one coming out in a few months’ time.

8865First – Elise K Ackers’ January release, Unforgettable, is an Australian-set, urban, down-to-earth, contemporary romance about Connor, left with blank space where three years of his life should be, and  Emma, his colleague, best friend, and ex-lover, who takes on the task of re-introducing him to his life. Tensions arise when their mutual attraction becomes stronger. Connor wants to pursue it, but Emma remembers the path they went down before – and the reasons they broke up. Connor’s accident is her fault, and not having him in her life is her punishment.

But…if it ended there, it wouldn’t be a romance 😉 Emma gets that coveted do-over, learns from her mistakes and creates a new ending – one much happier than the last.

As an added bonus, this fictional story takes place against the non-fictional renovations of Melbourne’s famed Hamer Hall, adding a strong touch verisimilitude to Emma and Connor’s story.

Our second amnesiac story is…I don’t remember.

No, just kidding. It’s Nicole Flockton’s Bound By Her 8874Ring, out as of the 1st of February. This title has a very Desire/Presents-esque feel to it, with its ultra alpha hero, with his wealth and his power and his control. Luciano has every intention of making his wife pay for the hurt she has caused him – except she doesn’t remember it. Not the hurt, not their marriage, not even him. After a car accident leaves her with memory loss, the only thing she knows is that she wears a beautiful wedding ring – one that she can’t bear to remove, even if she doesn’t remember who gave it to her. And, we all know that powerful men love powerfully, and this is a very powerful story about revenge, redemption, and renewal.

Our third amnesia story is tentatively titled Forget Me Not, and will be released later this year. Until then, be sure to tell us: does an amnesia story work for you? What do you like? What don’t you like?

And what are some of your favourite amnesia stories?

8 thoughts on “Let’s Talk Romance Tropes: Amnesia

  1. The Kenneth Branagh/Emma Thompson movie Dead Again (made when they were the Power couple and Ken sported a goatee–you know how much I love men with facial hair). Also, there’s Carla Cassidy’s “Pregnesia,” which reminded me a little of Dead Again, but with a SEAL and pregnant amnesiac, and without the supernatural past-life element. It was a bit of goofy fun!
    I can’t wait to read the books by Nicole and Elise!

  2. It’s not strictly a romance, although I would say there’s definitely a happy ending, but for me it’s The Long Kiss Goodnight. What a cracker.

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