Paint Me Like One of Your French Girls: Art in Romance.

When I started narrowing down my choices for my list post of five sexy tortured artists in romance, I kept thinking about how there are all sorts of sexy themes in romance novels, firemen, navy seals, cops, billionaires, billionaire firemen, billionaire cops, billionaire navy seals, billionaire billionaires…There are also the taboo themes, stepbrother, stepfather, teacher, professor, OBGYN, priest, billionaire steps/teachers/professors/OBGYNs, alas, no billionaire priests, yet. I’m sure he’s coming. (See what I did there?)

One of the themes that really turns my crank is the tortured artist. Now, not all artists are tortured, but I think we can agree that most artists (myself included) are a bubble off plumb. I’m here to give you Five Sexy Tortured Artists in Romance. 

Of course, these artists are the best, most sought-after artists in whatever medium they work in, just ask the authors, and they’re sexy or enigmatic, or in one case, give you a total feminism boner, which isn’t a boner at all. It’s like the righteous excitement of your nips because “YES, QUEEN!” Preach.It.Princess.

Here you go: (if you click on the covers, the links are affiliate.)

Five Sexy Tortured Artists in Romance, (tacos later).


Night Embrace by the Original Cassandra Clare. Oh wait, I meant Sherrilyn Kenyon. This book features a dark hero and a kooky artist named Sunshine who I would totally love to hang and drink some spiked chicory with on the Bayou. This book is quintessential unbelievable PNR, and I fucking love it for that. It’s like nerdy sexy candy with body paint. Perfect to kick back with a hurricane (drink not weather event, if weather event you should probably evacuate somewhere else to read. Trust me, I lived through Sandy.)

This lovely little ditty features a politician’s son and a sexy tortured tattoo artist! One woman on the run from her past, and one man on running to his future. Could they run right into one another at the perfect time? OBVIE.

Being Ava Gouel, the muse of Picasso’s cubist period is exactly as glamorous and heartbreaking as you can imagine. He was art’s biggest womanizer, who nevertheless had the love and adoration of the beautiful Ava, who was a talent in her own right. This is a good example of how who we love and how we love, stays with us forever.

Told you you’d get purely feminist headlights happening.“I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will.” YES YOU ARE, JANE. YOU ARE FREE TO BE YOU! And you love Edward Rochester, but you will be no man’s secret wife when wife number one is locked in the attic! YOU DO YOU, JANE! Even when you end up marrying him after his wife burns down the house! (Also, let’s step back and appreciate how we’ve evolved since this was written. It made Mrs Rochester out to be horrid, but she was sick, not awful. Her parents were awful for forcing her to marry and tricking Edward, but she was sick. I’m glad that we’ve mostly moved away from the mad woman in the attic narrative.

I am not kidding even a little when I tell you I’ve read this six or more times. I love it that much. Javi (the sculpted sculptor) and Kate (the fab photog) just tick all my romantic buttons. He’s tortured, she’s intrigued, he’s intrigued, he feeds her tacos, she let’s him see her clam. It’s perfect. Honest to Pete, occasionally, I just sigh dreamily and think “Javi.” He’s just so dreamy. Gruff and older and not classically handsome. GAH! mmmm, le sigh.

And because he feeds her tacos, from a truck, I’m so making tacos for you scamps. With yummy slaw and grilled, pressed tofu. I promise it’s good. I swear on my instant pot!

Five Sexy Tortured Artists In Romance Novels, and TACOS! Click To Tweet

Vegan Street Tacos with Chipotle Avocado Crema and Slaw.

Paint Me Like One of Your French Girls: Art in Romance.
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What Goes In?

    for the tofu
  • 1 block extra firm tofu
  • 1 tsp adobo
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp tajin lime chili seasoning
  • for the crema
  • 2 very ripe avocados
  • the juice of one lime
  • 1 tbsp chipotle tabasco
  • 2 tbsp vegan cream cheese
  • 4 tbsp boiling water
  • for the slaw
  • 1/2 head purple cabbage
  • 1/2 cup vegan mayo
  • 3 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp caraway seed
  • dash of celery salt
  • dash of sea salt
  • pinch of white pepper
  • toppings
  • 6" corn tortillas
  • fresh cilantro
  • freshly-sliced radish
  • pickled red onion
  • hot sauce
  • avocado

Avengers, Assemble!

    To make the tofu, slice vertically into five equal slices
  1. press in a tofu press or between two plates overnight
  2. combine seasonings in a bowl
  3. sprinkle the seasonings all over the tofu
  4. grill on each side for 2 or 3 minutes or until it gives way without sticking
  5. let rest for a minute, slice against the grill marks
  6. for the crema
  7. pour the water and the cream cheese in a blender and whir until combined
  8. add remaining ingredients
  9. for the slaw,
  10. slice cabbage thinly
  11. combine all other ingredients in a big bowl until well-mixed
  12. toss in cabbage and toss well.
  13. refrigerate overnight

Nutrition Facts
    Amount Per Serving
  • Calories 311
  • % Daily Value*

  • Total Fat: 30 g 46.15%
  • Saturated Fat: g 0%
  • Cholesterol: mg 0%
  • Sodium: mg 0%
  • Potassium: mg 0%
  • Total Carbohydrate: 10 g %
  • Sugar: g
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Vitamin A: 0%
  • Calcium: mg 0%
  • Iron: mg 0%
  • * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.

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