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Friday, January 25, 2013

Guest Blog: Maggie Berkley: What is Love?

I watched a movie a few months ago with my son and the undertone of it got me thinking about love? In the movie the 'antihero' is thrown together unwillingly with the heroine when she, along with her friends, invades 'antihero's' land. A fight ensues and because of circumstances he is forced to take her with him and keep her imprisoned. He's rough, crude and irritated with her and she, in fear of her life, does everything she can to keep him amused and entertained. Soon they come to a compromise but once she has his defenses lowered she tries to escape only to be attacked by other dangerous hunters and once again her life is in danger.

This time though the antihero rushes to her protection, defending her against her attackers and in the midst of a big standoff she wordlessly declared herself under his protection. After he defeats her attackers, the two create a sort of familiar bond and relax into peace and contentment after she discovers a gentle, caring side of her keeper, but soon she is found and rescued by her friends. The antihero, deciding he doesn't want to lose her, pursues them, destroying everything in his path in order to reach her and taking more than his fair share of wounds in the process. Ultimately, he ends up disabled and taken prisoner. The heroine objects to his imprisonment, but her friends drag the antihero back to their own land. In protest, and unable to change her friend's minds, the heroine leaves as soon as they return to their homeland.

The movie ends with the heroine and antihero being reunited and they have a brief moment of peace and joy until once again they are pursued and he, protecting the heroine from danger and suffering from grievous wounds, gives himself over to death so that she might live. As always I wind up crying while watching it, for to see such a profound love always chokes me up. My son, of course, joked at my expense, rolling his eyes and making quips about how the twosome were mismatched and how sexually their relationship was impossible, while I tried to explain to him love was more than sex. That it was a bond...the ability to connect with someone on a level so deep that you knew they would do everything in their power to keep you safe and protected, both physically and emotionally. That they would give you unconditional support and understanding, that nothing you could say or do would affect the way they felt about you. They would never abandon you, never turn from you, never give you a doubt that they loved you. The kind of love that when you glance over at your husband sprawled on the couch, snoring loud enough to wake the dead and making you want to smack him for not joining in on your heartfest.

Yes, my husband has never done any of the things the antihero did (after all, he's still alive, thank God!) but in his own way he has shown me his love. When I have nightmares he comforts, when I'm sad he consoles me. When I'm angry he gets me to see reason and when I'm insecure he makes me feel beautiful. Would he do everything in his power to keep me safe? Yes, for I've seen it in the past and I can hear it in his voice. How many men would do a beat down on some guy who refused to back away from their woman? And how many men would cry (and try to hide their tears while denying there was anything but a speck in their eyes) during the Notebook and the Time Traveler's Wife? Although we are no longer young and spry, despite the fact that grey hairs are starting to spread over our heads and we wake up sore and stiff he's still my antihero. My gruff, prickly, ogreish hero...who snores loud enough to win a chainsaw competition. case you're wondering, the movie wasn't some romantic drama or even a romance at all. In fact the main characters weren't even part of the same species. One was a human female, slightly emotionally damaged. The other is a giant gorilla, the last of his kind. The movie? King Kong directed by Peter Jackson starring Naomi Watts, Jack Black and Adrien Brody. To me, one of the most beautiful love stories I've ever seen. Watch it some time to see what I mean.

BLURB: Out of the ShadowedLands: Book Three of the Morgan Crowe trilogy

A storm is brewing in the Dark Courts and her name is Death.

Tired of broken promises and betrayal, Morgan Crowe takes matters into her own hand and carves a destructive path through the maze of political intrigue the Dark Queen of the Mor'sin'dar had created. After rescuing her friend Vivienne from the dungeons of UnderArch, Morgan returns home to discover her son missing, taken by the man she had once given her heart to. Seeking help to retrieve him she finds those she served unwilling to give assistance and realizes that loyalty is not always a two way street. Tired of being used by those she thought of as allies and hunted by those she knows are enemies, Morgan is determined to end the game she had been unwillingly pulled in to and strikes out in fury at everyone around her.

But when her past finally catches up with her and threatens the lives of those she loves, Morgan knows it's time to take a stand. Charged by her dead King to bring justice to him and the throne and still haunted by the prophecy given to her about the future, she must make a decision that could change the ShadowedLands and those who live within its borders forever. With the help of the mysterious Lord Requiem and the young Werewolf Ty, Morgan steps forward to bring a true King to the Ebon Throne and to remove the threat to her and those she loves. Will she give into her destructive nature or will she finally step into the destiny she was born for?

A long time fan of dark fantasy with a touch of romance, Maggie Berkley grew up in a world all her own. During long times of parental lock down as a teenager due to a rebellious nature, she wrote short stories and plays, and as time went by drew upon her love of fantasy to write fan fiction. Due to the encouragement of friends and family she decided rather than keep her stories for herself she would publish and share them with the world. This is the result.

Maggie lives in Portland Oregon with her husband of many, many years, an extremely tall teen-age son, one rowdy puppy and two cats that rule their lives with an iron claw.

Maggie currently has three novels published. Enter The Night, Behind The Throne, and Out Of The ShadowedLands from the Morgan Crowe Trilogy. She also co-scripted a short film called The Ban-Sidhe.

Feel free to contact her at

She can also be found on:


Sandy said...

Hi Maggie,
Great post and wonderful tribute to love. Your hubby sounds like mine.

When I was young and the first Hong Kong movie came out I was afraid to watch it. To me it was terrifying, but you have given me a new outlook on the movie.

I don't really like dark stories because I want a HEA every time. Your story does sound interesting though.

Cara Marsi said...

Maggie, I would never have guessed you were describing King Kong. Well done!I love the way you describe your husband's love. I know my husband would defend me to the death if he had to (thank God he's never had to). My husband and I watch the Lifetime and Hallmark Christmas romances and he cries. He'll deny he's crying, but I see the tears in his eyes. Your story sounds very interesting. Best of luck.

Maggie Berkley said...

Thank you both, Sandy and Cara. And believe it or not, Sandy, Out of the ShadowedLands does have a happy ending but it is part of a trilogy where the first two books don't end happy because of the continuation of Morgan's story. But Book Three, I'm very happy with the way it concludes and I think readers will be also.
And Cara, my hubby is a secret romantic too. He cries at some love stories and, of course, denies it. He forbid me to watch The Notebook (because it was too much for him & so would be too much for me too), While You Were Sleeping, The Timetraveler's Wife to name a few. I like seeing that side of him because I know he thinks about me & our marriage and how much he loves me.

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