Favorite Reads

Romance Writer Weekly

The question this week is whether Romance is my number one read, why, and what else do I read. This is a question more difficult to answer than you might think.

I’m a binge reader. I will take an author and read five or six of their books. When I start to see the tropes and how they structure things, I stop and move on to something else. This isn’t a slam at the authors, by any means. Sometimes, I read books and watch films to pick them apart. It’s a big part of learning my craft. I don’t want to do that when I read for enjoyment, though, and the moment I start “seeing” the structure, time for me to move on, no matter how much I might love the author.

This is also why, when I finish a binge with a romance author, I move to mysteries or non-fiction.. I need to give my mind a break so the little voice isn’t whispering, “That’s the Cute Meet. There’s the first ‘No Way’ beat. Now we’re breaking into Act II…” Different genres have different rythmns, so I find it easier to keep the reading fresh by switching from one to another. I go from romance to cozy mystery to history to a classic back to romance, with perhaps a few stops at comic books in between. The question becomes, “What’s going to entertain my brain today?”

At the moment, I’m getting ready to dive into Christmas-themed books. Why? Because I love reading them at this time of year. I live in Los Angeles, the place where you string lights on your palm tree and gaze at it as you float in your pool. For me, snowfall is something I only find in movies or the husband I got down to Disneyland for holiday-themed festivities. Yes, Disneyland makes “snow” in certain areas of the park. But books transport me to soft white landscapes, and if romance is in the air, all the better. There are many old Signet holiday anthologies on my keeper shelf, and I’m about to start up Sarah Vance-Tompkins On Christmas Tree Cove. While my non-holiday romance reading is primarily historical, I’ll happily dive into almost any Christmas/Holiday themed romance. If the story has snow, holiday traditions, and love in the air. I’m in.

Funny enough, while I enjoy cozy mysteries—which often have a romantic element to them—I’m not fond of Christmas ones. Perhaps its the combination of dead bodies and the holidays.

But that still leaves the question of “Why romance novels? Why read (and write) those instead of something else?” Simple. They offer tales of hope, of overcoming odds and trials. They tell stories where your past actions forge who you are, but they do not define the rest of your life going forward, that someone can change and for the better. Because they give me a warm, fuzzy feeling inside when the rest of the world weighs heavy. Because, unlike any other genre, I end the book with a smile on my face. Not a bad way to unwind at the end of the day.

How about you? Is romance your primary genre to read? Why? What else do you read?

If you missed it, check what A.S. Fenichel reads. Then, move on to learn what Jenna Da Sie has to say.

Speaking of love stories, next week is the Book Birthday for my novel To Lure a Lord. To celebrate, you can buy the ebook for $1.99 for a limited time at all major retailers.

She must find a husband or be forced into an arranged marriage. But can the man trying to scuttle her efforts be the answer to her prayers?

The London season is a ticking clock for Augusta Eastleigh. With her mother’s help, she found a marriage prospect she hopes will satisfy her grandfather, the Earl of Forebridge. But Lord Blair MacDonald does not look kindly on her efforts to snare his friend. Nor does he hesitate to make his views known about Augusta and the rumors surrounding her birth.

Blair has more than one reason to dislike the girl. With his older brother Hamish wounded while fighting on the Peninsula, and his eldest brother refusing to marry, the Marquis of Rutherglen decided his third son will be the one to carry on the family line. Which means he needs to marry. Now. The girl his father wants for Blair? None other than Augusta Eastleigh.

The situation pleases neither of them. But with the heads of the families set on the match, can they find common ground together, or will they face an unhappy future?

Until next time, stay safe, stay heallthy.