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bodice ripper

A historical romance novel typically published in the 1970s and 1980s. Before heading to the beach, Justine grabbed her chair, her sunglasses, and the latest bodice ripper from her bookshelf to read while she relaxed in the sun.
See also: bodice, ripper

a bodice-ripper

a romantic book, usually where the story happens a long time ago, in which the characters show very strong emotions She's written a serious novel, not some sort of bodice-ripper.