Hot sin­gle dads the lat­est trend

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS -

LONDON: For a nov­el­ist with a knack for ro­mance, this is great news: the lat­est fash­ion in pool-side pa­per­back he­roes, it seems, is “hot sin­gle dads”.

Mills & Boon spot­ted the trend ear­lier this year, say­ing that its ti­tles con­tain­ing the words “Sin­gle Dad” were fly­ing off the shelves.

HarperCollins churned out six for Fa­ther’s Day.

These ro­man­tic leads still tend to be rich, or doc­tors, or hero paramedics, and ob­vi­ously they still have rip­pling pecs and manly stub­ble. But now they’ve got ba­bies, too.

It seems women just can’t get enough of those car­ing men who are more likely to peep round the door of the nurs­ery on the way to the bed­room than lead a girl into a Room of Pain and thrash her with a leather strap like the creepy, vi­o­lent Mr Grey.

I will im­me­di­ately rush into print, mind­ful of the new genre’s style.

“Dar­ren looked down at her, as her eyes filled with tears,” I’d be­gin.

“A thrill of elec­tric­ity went through her trem­bling body as his strong hand rested on her bare shoul­der, warm through the thin silk of her camisole.

“The scent of baby-rice on his breath made her dizzy.

“Mes­merised, Fiona moved to­wards his em­brace as, with in­fi­nite gen­tle­ness, he eased off the straps of the Ig­gle Pig­gle-print pa­poose and looked for some­where to put the baby down.”

Of course, many have greeted this de­vel­op­ment with scep­ti­cism. Do women re­ally want some­one else’s cast-off? Surely a sin­gle girl wants a sin­gle man, with no com­pli­ca­tions, no wor­ry­ing ev­i­dence that an­other wo­man got there be­fore her.

But it had to come, this fan­tasy. Why? Prob­a­bly be­cause of to­day’s per­ilous dat­ing land­scape. Read any­thing from Brid­get Jones’s Di­aries to on­line dat­ing blogs, and what is the most com­mon worry of young women? It’s that to­day’s young men “won’t com­mit”.

“There are so many dif­fer­ent kinds of ro­mance he­roes, but sin­gle dads have a nur­tur­ing and car­ing el­e­ment that is very ap­peal­ing,” says a spokesper­son for Mills & Boon. “The he­roes seem real and of­ten of­fer hope of a sec­ond chance at hap­pily ever af­ter. Writ­ers have hit on the al­lure of a man with a track record of pledg­ing his troth – even though it didn’t last and re­sulted in him be­ing a fa­ther to an­other wo­man’s child. We sadly con­clude that nowa­days, a man who has shown a flicker of ma­tu­rity in a pre­vi­ous re­la­tion­ship – re­gard­less of the bag­gage he sub­se­quently car­ries with him – is deemed a catch.” That speaks vol­umes. The al­ter­na­tives, to­day’s women com­plain, sim­ply do not come up to scratch. Too many of them don’t want to set­tle down. They are fun, they are sexy, they are great mates, they are ad­mir­ing and even lov­ing in a cou­ple – but they seem wor­ry­ingly wed­ded to a “kidult” life­style.

Five-a-side foot­ball, stag week­ends abroad, com­puter games, club­bing, mini­breaks to the sun, snow or jun­gle. To them, a beach is not a place for sand­cas­tles, sand­wiches and pad­dling. It’s for surf­ing, scuba div­ing, pad­dle­board­ing and evenings of san­gria and se­duc­tion.

They are likely to get enough sex with­out putting a ring on any­one’s fin­ger and they don’t have a bi­o­log­i­cal clock, or not so that any­one would no­tice.

On bal­ance, if I were rein­car­nated as a young wo­man, I’d stick with the old fan­tasy of a chap heartwhole, un­en­cum­bered and ready for the great ad­ven­ture. – Daily Mail

Women just can’t get enough of those car­ing men

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