Casey’s Literary Rants

Casey Literary RantsIn which I rant about diversity

The other day, I was reading a book. Now, this isn’t an abnormal activity for me to do but the abnormality came from the book I was reading – Night Betrayed by Joss Ware. Theo, the hero, had a HINT of Asian heritage! Egads! Do you know what this means? It means he wasn’t 100% pure-bred American! Oh the horror!

…wait. Horror? No, no, no. I meant, Oh thank goodness! Diversity! Right? Am I getting this right? Because if I compare Theo to practically every other male character I’ve read about, they’re not Asian. Or even have a hint of Asian heritage. And if I’m going to compare what’s right based on popularity, or majority, then was I right to instantly assume that diversity is wrong. Yes? Yes???

No! I’m here to tell you that diversity is a wonderful thing. It really truly is. It’s reading about more than just what I see everyday. Time and time again, I read a book where the characters are all pale skin, blonde hair, blue eyes. Okay, sometimes people have brown or red hair. Either way, it’s the same kind of people that I see every time I walk around outside. That is NOT diversity.

Diversity is reading about things you don’t normally see or read about. (And I’m not talking about paranormal diversity. Nu uh, that’s a whole ‘nother kind of diversity.) America is often compared to a melting pot because there are so many different ethnicities. So why are we only reading about marshmallows? Well, I don’t have an answer for that. (Me, without answer. Blasphemy!) But I do know of this totally awesome book that will blow your mind.

In Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles, Brittney is the quintessential all American girl with her fair skin, blonde hair and blue eyes. Yet, she hooks up with Alejandro – a Mexican gang member. I cannot even begin to tell you how yummy Alex is. He’s BEYOND yummy. With his dark, thick, wavy hair, chocolate brown eyes, ripped bod and tattoos…And did I mention he’s Mexican, not American? Yummy and different! Is your mind blown yet?!

To further blow your mind, a book doesn’t have to have a main character of a different ethnicity to be diverse. Nope, diversity could simply be having the main characters love someone of the same gender!! Gasp! Well, not really gasp. I mean, love is love and since figuring out if gays should be allowed to be married in America is a hot topic, shouldn’t we be able to read stories and see that LOVE IS LOVE.

Adam and Dominic from Jenna Black’s Morgan Kingsley are one of my favorite couples EVER. And you know what’s so special about Dominic and Adam, apart from the fact that they’re both men? Well, not much. I mean, they don’t have green skin or five arms or anything crazy like that. Dominic is a firefighter (oh so YUMMY firefighter) and Adam is a director of Special Forces. (And Adam just so happens to be a host for a demon, but you know, that’s not too terribly important.) They’re one of my favorite couples ever because no matter what happens to them, it’s so clearly obvious that they love each other. Love love love each other. And that’s all that ever matters in ANY relationship.

We live in a world where men can and do love men and women can love women. Shouldn’t we read books where men love men and women love women? Yes we should! Yet, usually, the gay couples are merely secondary characters. Like the totally kick-ass, amazing Ivy from Kim Harrison’s The Hollows series. (Although, Blood Work is a graphic novel that is from Ivy’s point of view. I haven’t read it yet, but I hear it’s amazing.)

Reality isn’t black and white. I mean really, just look up at the sky. It’s blue, in case you were unaware of that fact. Books shouldn’t be just black and white. I’m not saying that every book should be the next Lady Gaga (that’d be pretty hard to pull off), but can’t we start making more books like Perfect Chemistry or have an entire series about Adam and Dominic as the main characters? (OMG yes!!! I want that. Right now.) Yes, there are books out there that are different from the norm, but they are rare jewels indeed.

About Casey 203 Articles
Casey is the founder of Heart Full of Ink, Director at Reading Until Dawn Con, and a full time cheese addict. She's been ranting and reviewing for Literary Escapism since 2010, and is part of the trio #3Bloggers1Series podcast. When she's not reading, looking for new books, or stalking authors online (waiting for more books), she can be found binge watching Netflix. But really, her life is all about DEM BOOKS!


  1. I want a series about Adam & Dominic too, they really are such a fantastic couple. Pretty much evey time they pop up, you can see their devotion to each other, even when they’re disagreeing and its fantastic. In fact, for me, I was more interested int heir relationship than the one Morgan had with the Lawyer (Brian, maybe? I feel like it’s B something but it’s been a whie since I read it and like I said, their relationship totally outshadows Morgan and B’s)

    And you have sold Perfect Chemistry to me with that description! lol.
    In Mine Till Midnight by Lisa Kleypas (set in Regency England if I remember rightly) the heroine falls in love with a gypsy who is a part of ‘polite society’ but is still in touch with his roots.

    Though I do believe we need more diversity in books, as usual I thoroughly enjoyed your literary rant. :) You or Jackie should do a Suday Surprise or Tempt me Saturday edition of diverse books. ;D

  2. Yep, his name is Brian! Don’t get me wrong, I love Morgan and Brian. Their relationship is anything but ordinary but Adam and Dominic were waaaaay more interesting! (And waaaaaaaaay hotter too. Just have to add that.) *grin*

    Oh yay! Perfect Chemistry was so adorable and amazing. I didn’t like Rules of Attraction as much (book #2) but it was still awesome. (And Kiara did have a gay best friend, which was awesome.) I can’t wait to read Chain Reaction, which just came out. And Mine Till Midnight sounds awesome (always did love those gypsys).

    I’ll talk to Jackie about mabye doing that one weekend. Thanks for the suggestions =)

  3. See ?! I Knew it was B-something. Lol. Exactly, I wanted to know more about their relatonship than Morgan & Brian’s, it was more interesting, more real, more romatic and, like you said, waaaaaaaaay hotter. Lol. I was in love by the end of the book. ;)

    It’s waiting for me in my basket at amazon. The Kleypas one is something a little different and you get to see into the gypsy culture a little bit.

    I think it’d be a good way to add some more hot mexican characters into people’s reading. ;)

    • One of the aspects I love about the Morgan Kingsley series was the fact that the alpha male wasn’t the standard straight-laced man, but the one who lived an alternative lifestyle. I’m not just talking about the gay factor either – the BDSM was such an integral part of both Adam and Dom’s life they wouldn’t have been them without it.

  4. You’re right Jackie, their relationship and diversity made the book and it wouldn’t have been the same without those aspects.

  5. Thanks for the shout-out!

    I also wanted to point out that Simon Japp has Korean and Hispanic in his genetic makeup, and that Zoe Kapoor is of Indian descent (all from the Envy Chronicles). I tried to make the characters diverse but at the same time, being subtle about it. :-)

    Thanks for noticing about Theo. :-)

  6. @Melissa – I got Mine Till Midnight =) I’m really excited about reading it now! I’ll probably write a review of it, or rant about it, afterward.

    @Jackie – Not only that but Adam and Dom were secondary characters. As Morgan’s love interest Brian was the hero of the story, but he was a beta male. It’s very rare that you see that in any book, let alone an entire series. That’s part of the reason why I love that series so much – it’s so different.

    @Joss – You’re very welcome! I didn’t realize Simon was part Korean. And I knew Zoe was something but I wasn’t sure if it was Indian, Native American or just plain old tan skin from working in front of her forge all the time. :)

    Everyone who hasn’t read Joss Ware’s Envy Chronicles series – what are you waiting for?! If you’re not sure what the series is about, I reviewed Beyond the Night (book 1) and Embrace the Night Eternal (book 2)(my reviews of Abandon the Night and Night Betrayed are coming soon)!

    • Casey – Brian is so not the alpha hero of Black’s series. He’s not even an alpha. Just because he was Morgan’s love interest does not mean he fills the hero role. The guy spent more time complaining about how things affected him than actually worrying about others. Hell, even knowing what was going on in Morgan’s life, he chose to leave her instead of staying and being supportive. If you want a love interest of Morgan’s to be the hero, that would have to be Lugh.

  7. Jackie – He actually leaves her? I haven’t read Speak of the Devil or The Devil’s Playground yet, but from what I remember of the first three books is that she kept trying to leave him but he wouldn’t let her go. It’s been a few years since I’ve read them though…

  8. I didn’t like Brian. I’ve read all but the last book because I don’t want those two together. I’d rooted for Lugh (and Morgan) all along. I think that’s why I didn’t read the last one just in case Brian and Morgan got wund up together as they just seemed so wrong.

  9. I’ve just finishedreading perfect chemistry and I absoloutely LOVED it! I’ve managed to read it in about 2 days because I just couldn’t put it down. It was fantastic, thanks for reccomending it, though I only wish I’d gotten it sooner ! :-)

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