I haven’t been online much this morning, so my ~hot take ~ before I get too bombarded by everyone’s opinions is that this is a bitter love song. She’s saying, “I come with a major warning label, but I like you: are you ready for it?”
The verses are pretty biting, but I don’t think it’s satirical exactly. She’s definitely leaning into the man-eater aspect of her persona, but I imagine Taylor must have genuine moments of bitterness over who she is and her ~reputation~ and that’s what she’s expressing here. The lyrics are clever and sarcastic, and having some fun with the ideas, but I think the cynicism behind them is real. It just isn’t the only thing that’s real. She’s still game to try to work something out with someone new, as she says in the chorus, but she knows she has baggage going in.
She explored similar ideas in Wildest Dreams and I Know Places, which are also musings about the beginning of a potential relationship. This one feels more bitter to me because it’s presented as a challenge. But I also think she’s still being a bit playful within the darkness of the theme, which makes sense to me. Taylor seems to have kind of a biting sense of humor at times.
I love the Elizabeth Taylor/Richard Burton reference. I don’t know how deep Taylor was being with that, but it’s a very interesting couple to reference. They were EVERYWHERE in their day. It was an epic, dramatic, scandalous romance that ultimately became destructive to the two people involved. It’s been years since I read this, but if you’re interested in them or that era or Hollywood gossip, I highly recommend the book Furious Love, which is a biography of both of them with an emphasis on their relationship to each other. It includes a lot from Richard Burton’s diary (which he wrote to be published) and letters they wrote to each other. It’s dishy and fascinating. I wonder if Taylor has read it.
I will probably completely change my mind about this in like an hour, so don’t hold me to it.
Starting off my very first book rec post talking about my very first set of romance novels(and introducing myself to the community a little bit), which just so happened to be the the Wallflower series by Lisa Kleypas.
Today’s episode of “so I’ve started a book journal” is a BIT on the chaotic side, but I loved this book. It was a fun read, and did not disappoint after my initial introduction to Tessa Dare’s wit and humor.
Also: THE PEACH AND THE AUBERGINE!
I will never not be convinced that Tessa added that scene because of text emoticons.