Maybe because we don’t get to read what the other side, usually the hero, thinks or feels. I’m not a fan of first person POV either, but I was able to overlook that in Linda Howard’s To Die For and Drop Dead Gorgeous. The only thing missing was the hero’s lust-thoughts.
They tend not to be as evocative. From a writer’s standpoint they’re definitely harder to write because of that fact. You’ve got to conted with body parts *and* feelings and it’s easy to get lazy and just focus on one over the other.
I’ve only used first person in one book, a private eye story because that seems to be the convention.
Overall, I think third person is better because it gives a more complete picture of what the character is really thinking, feeling, experiencing, instead of being filtered through their own opinions. People don’t always admit even to themselves the full range of their emotions–and if they did, it would sound overblown and weird. Same with describing sex as they experience it. Descriptions with analogies and similes and all that crap sound much better coming from an omniscient third party.
‘Cause really am I going to say, “At his touch, fire raced through me, setting my nerve endings ablaze as I was consumed in the ecstasy of yadda yadda”?
Karen, for the most part, first person just shuts me down. Particularly with sex.
I really do think it has to do with a reader becoming the character. You just can’t do that in first POV. Also, I think, as people, too much “I” this and “I” that in a conversation is a turn off! There’s something inherently selfish in it–a me me me scenario–and it takes hella talent to pull it off in any book, let alone one with lots of sex.
I’ve done so much editing of third person, a badly done third person scene bores me stupid. Not to mention, there’s really not much difference between saying it in tight third person as first person. In good tight third, you’re only changing the pronoun and verb agreement. Tight third is one person’s POV. So is first person. If first person is boring in a sex scene, perhaps the writer failed to establish the “first person” protagonist’s voice as someone who could be naturally descriptive.