The History Channel TV series Vikings had an estimated six million viewers this first season and has been renewed for a second season. Now, I know not all of the viewers were men because I and several of my girlfriends also watched this show.
But why? Why do Vikings have such an appeal for women and romance readers?
Escapism. We can fantasize about a Viking sweeping us away from our every day life. After all, isn’t that what reading-regardless of genre-is for? The dirty dishes and laundry pushed aside while our Viking hero sails away with us on his dragon ship.
History. (I had to throw that one in there.) It is fascinating to get a glimpse of how people lived and what they believed over a thousand years ago. Historical fiction and romance have come a long way-no longer are they just bodice rippers…darn, err I mean they now have a plot that could rival any soap opera. If you have the shallowest pulse for history, the new generation of history will seduce you.
And sexy. We have the image of Vikings as being tall, fit, and blond. However, I think it goes beyond this to their attitude. Vikings took whatever they wanted without remorse. None of them had to take assertiveness classes. There is something very sexy about a man with confidence.
Variety. Historical fiction and Romance novels about Vikings range from the brutality of real-life, to sizzling, to humorous.
And no, real Vikings did not wear helmets with horns on them.