Raging Romantics

Raging Romantics

#7: Diamonds are a Billionaire's Best Friends

December 04, 2020

Bear with us on the audio for this one, folks. We're sorry...we had some technical difficulties with having to record remotely.

Why are we so obsessed with billionaires as romance heroes? In real life billionaires are nowhere near as popular, or common, as they seem to be in romance novels, where it appears that they are on nearly every street corner. We're not talking Christian Grey here, people! We're talking UBER wealth, UBER attractive, and UBER unrealistic. So, if you're interested in hearing Jackie get very excited about a line graph, and Jen get very conflicted about loving billionaire romance heroes, click that play button and pour some of your favorite beverage into a diamond chalice (what, you don't have one? How plebian).


TW: Some political discussion



  • Billionaire romance: a subgenre of romance novel that features a billionaire character, and their wealth/lifestyle is a driving force beyond the plot

  • Cinderella fetish: When the hero seeks out a heroine who is impoverished and naïve, and lavishes wealth and trappings of a wealthy lifestyle upon her to gain her love and affection.

  • Lifestyle porn: Features of a wealthy lifestyle including but not limited to, extensive shopping trips at couture and brand names; exotic trips; expensive cars and jewelry; lavish parties; etc.

  • Incel- "Involuntary celibate" (Jen, Jackie is mad that you made her bring this up)- an involuntary celibate is an individual (usually heavily featured in the online community on Reddit, Tumblr, etc.) who feels that it is not "their fault" they are unable to obtain a romantic or sexual partner, despite wanting one. This is typically linked with arguments of male supremacy and violence against women.

  • Competence porn- Where someone becomes exponentially more attractive the better they are at whatever they do; sic. billionaires are incredibly attractive because of how capable they are at garnering and maintaining wealth.



  • "Americans feel as bad about billionaires today as they did during the 2009 recession" (Schleifer, 2019)

    • The infamous line graph!

  • Why One Romance Novelist Didn't Think She'd Write a Billionaire Hero" (Faircloth, 2015)

    • Interview with Courtney Milan, partial

  • "How Romance Novelist Courtney Milan Does, and Writes About, Money" (The Billfold, 2015)

    • Full Milan Interview

  • "Gravity Payments expands its $70,000 minimum wage from Seattle to Idaho" (Peters, 2020)

    • The company Jen couldn't remember

  • "27 Millionaire Statistics: What Percentage of Americans are millionaires?" (Lynkova, 2020)

  • "The Billionaire Census 2020" (Wealth-X, 2020)

  • "America has Almost 800 Billionaires, a Record High" (Schleifer, 2020)

  • "US Billionaire Wealth Surges to %584 Billion, or 20 Percent, Since the Beginning of the Pandemic" (Collins, 2020)

  • "Where do Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett and Bill Gates rank among all-time richest Americans?" (Sauter, 2019)

  • "Romance 10: Billionaires" (Diehl, 2015)

  • "Who Will be the World's First Trillionaire?" (Simpson, 2019)

  • "Dukes and Billionaires: Why do we love them so?" (USA Today and Harkness, 2015)

  • "These are the Trade-off's we make when we depend on billionaires to save us" (Schleifer, 2020)

Books mentioned