We’re having a long, hot January summer in my part of DownUnder—too hot really. So hot all I could do some days was sit near an air conditioner or fan and read. Turning the pages and lifting a cool drink to my lips was all the effort I could make!
Looking at what I read over the holiday break, I realised it was all romance and thrillers. I do read broadly across all genres as well as literary novels and non-fiction but recent reads, both print and e-books did not include those. Just romance and thrillers.
My family can’t understand why I enjoy thrillers and police procedurals, not shying away from the sometimes gruesome. (Or watch television programs where there is often a deal of screaming involved!) I say it’s because of the suspense of the whodunnit, the way characters react under pressure and danger, and because justice inevitably prevails.
And then there’s romance. Like many romance authors, I’ve often asked why I write romance. The implication is, why don’t I write something “better” than romance. Apart from the perhaps unintentional insult the question implies, I get a little cranky sometimes at having to “justify” what I write. The simple answer is that I love reading romance and decided to write what I enjoy reading!
Looking back (a looong time ago) I realise I always enjoyed stories with even a hint of romance in them—even in children’s books. My introduction to romance novels started with first my grandmother’s collection of Mills & Boon and Women’s Weekly Library that were considered “safe” for a young person’s eyes.
I don’t know that they realised how sensual some of the M&Bs were and how I combed them for the “sexy bits”!
When my mother brought home These Old Shades by Georgette Heyer from the library and told me she thought I would enjoy it, I got hooked on historicals. Then I really got into the “bodice rippers” of the eighties!
What I love about romance? That wonderful feeling of falling in love and that gorgeous, guaranteed happy ending. I love that about chick flicks too (but not when someone dies in the end!)
I still adore category romance, one of the reasons I love being a LoveCat alongside my favourite authors of the genre. Sometimes I have to pinch myself that my bookshelves at home now include rows of my own books, not only in English but also translations!
Did you fit some reading time over the holiday? What is it you love most about romance? I’d love to see your comments!