Why are man tribes so sexy and compelling?
My first awareness that I loved man tribes was watching Bachelorette. In the season I watched, the guys were all fighting over the bachelorette, as usual. And then one night when she wasn’t around, they got drunk and all jumped in the pool and swam and, not to sound like an old lady, but they roughhoused. Very roughly and sexily. Playing chicken and stuff. Being all drunk and guy-like. I felt like I was looking at the secret life of a man tribe.
And it was awesome.
I have been a fan of man tribes since then. In books, in shows, wherever. What is it about man tribes? For your convenience, I have isolated some of my favorite aspects.
My cats have this video called Kitty Safari, with footage of mice and birds twittering around, and they love to watch it, and sometimes they paw the TV set. That’s kind of how I felt with this Bachelorette man tribe. And man tribes in books, too.
Like I am looking in on this world that is strangely attractive that I can’t quite get at. There is an otherness thing there that makes it special and almost exotic.
Chicken soup aspect.
I discovered the Black Dagger brotherhood some years after Bachelorette. That man tribe is a total thing of beauty with their music and their little sayings and their Grey Goose and they way they call each other my brother. It’s predictable—you know they’re going to do it every time, but it’s soooo gratifying.
I also love Carolyn Jewel’s My Immortals tribe with its political structures and oaths of fealty. There are women in it too, but I think of it as a man tribe. They have this fingers-to-the-head greeting they always do when they encounter each other. I so love when they do that.
I’m always stupidly excited when I come to a scene where my spies run into each other, and they have this code they use—one guy says, nice morning for a coffee or something like that. And the other has to answer, Clears the mind. When both parts are said, it means, everything is cool. We can talk. It started as a spy thing, but it has taken on man tribe aspect in my mind, like a spy secret handshake.
Lately, I’ve enjoyed Shannon McKenna’s McCloud series. One of the things I enjoy in this series is when one of the heroes or their hunky friends is in an emotional dilemma and the guys sort of give each other heartfelt, but sort of simplistic advice. Stuff like, you gotta go after her, man. That’s not actually a McKenna line, but you get my point. It’s weirdly sexy.
Why do I think it’s sexy when semi-clueless guys are trying to help each other with their woman problems? I don’t know, I just DO!
Why do I love making my own guy characters gruffly help each other, with emo advice? Or help when they really, really shouldn’t. Why is that so pleasurable? I don’t know. But I can’t stop myself.
So there’s this scene in Off the Edge where Macmillan and his hitman friend are talking and the hitman is like, we have to stop this arms dealer, that is my priority. And Macmillan says, that is my priority, too.
And then there is this awkward silence where Macmillan realizes he has changed; his priority has shifted to the heroine. The hitman, of course, knows that, being Macmillan’s buddy. And the hitman is all grumbly like, you know I’ll help you.
Those bonds within man tribes are so delicious to me. Oh, man tribes.
Awesome badass firepower strength.
There is nothing like a man tribe in the full bloom of war. This is something Katie Reus does really well in her Red Stone series. It is just so gratifying when one of the guys is in trouble, and his man tribe comes and totally kick some ass.
Liliana Hart does this beautifully in her Mackenzie series, where the guys regroup in different ways and come to aid each other. It’s awesome to see her man tribes fight the bad guys with their full firepower. Or when they circle the wagons at their family homestead, and anybody trying to mess with them is so screwed.
I also like Anne Stuart’s Committee spies for this reason. These guys are all intensely lethal and dangerous on their own, but when they pull together in pairs, it’s a thing of beauty. Here’s to a New Year full of man tribes! Yeah!
SHE MAY BE HIS WORST ENEMY…
For deadly secret agent Peter Macmillan, language is a weapon—one he uses to hunt criminals, destroy plots, and charm enemies. Seducing information out of a beautiful singer in a Bangkok hotel should be easy…except this particular singer has the power to destroy his cool façade, and with it, his last defense against a dark past.
HE MAY BE HER ONLY HOPE…
He tricked her. He helped himself to her body and her secrets. He has enemies everywhere. Laney Lancaster should hate Peter, but when she discovers him shirtless, sweaty, and chained up in the hotel’s dungeon, all she can think about is freeing him. Because she knows what it’s like to be trapped and alone. And she could use a dangerous friend.
They might be wrong for each other, but the instant they join forces, Laney and Peter are plunged into an odyssey of hot sex and dark danger. To survive, they must trust each other with their lives—and their hearts.
About Carolyn Crane
Carolyn Crane writes romantic suspense, urban fantasy, and other tales of adventure and romance; she also writes erotic romance about bank robbers as Annika Martin. She lives in theAmerican Midwest with her husband and two cats. During rare moments when she’s not at her computer, she can be found reading in bed, running, or helping animals.
What is your favorite man tribe? I’m giving out one paperback copy of Off the Edge (US & Canada only) and one Off the Edge ebook (international) to random commenters!
You have until end of day Jan. 10 to enter, winner will be announced soon after.
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