Not a Romance

The other day I watched a sitcom and it was revealed that one of the characters was a romance author. The writer was very successful but was ending the book series by killing off the heroine.

I rolled my eyes and changed the channel. There are a few things that do not happen in a romance novel. Killing off the heroine is one of them. I assumed it went without saying, but obviously I was wrong.  Continue reading “Not a Romance”

5 Romance Books You Need on Your Keeper Shelf

You’re having a great day and you want to celebrate. You’re having a bad day and need to curl up on the couch and shut out the world. You’re bored and looking for some fun. Would you pick the same book for these moods? Probably not. In that case, have a few standbys on your shelf for each mood.  Continue reading “5 Romance Books You Need on Your Keeper Shelf”

Retro Romance: Donna Kauffman

If you want a contemporary romance about explorers and daredevils, spies and agents, or heroic men and women, try a Loveswept classic by Donna Kauffman. Many of these stories offer adventure for the reader yet the romance never gets lost in the action. The characters are shaped by their work, their sacrifices, and the loved ones they have lost, but the stories are focused tightly on the couples falling in love.  Continue reading “Retro Romance: Donna Kauffman”

Romance in Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Too often, I see people regard the Romance and the Sci-Fi/Fantasy (SFF) genres as oil and water. They just don’t mix.

SFF focuses on world building, exploration of galaxies or kingdoms, rag tag groups in search of adventure. Romance is often set in the contemporary and historical world, focusing on interpersonal relationships and individual characters.

SFF usually has high physical stakes: can they save the world? Romance focuses on high emotional stakes: will they be happy?

But honestly, Romance and SFF complement each other. As this article from Tor points out, romance is incredibly valuable in sci-fi and fantasy stories. It grounds the characters and gives them very human problems, problems that readers can connect with. It explores their emotional arcs and develops their character. It carries personal risk and conflict.  Continue reading “Romance in Sci-Fi/Fantasy”

Keeper Shelf Challenge

When I first heard Marie Kondo’s advice to keep no more than 30 books, I didn’t think it was doable. I have more than that on my keeper shelves! I know I’m not the only reader who has more than one keeper shelf. Throughout the years I’ve met romance readers who have rooms, basements and storage units filled with keeper books. I often wonder how they can find the book they want to read again.

But then, how often do I read the books on my keeper shelves? And I mean every book. Is each book truly a keeper? Or, in the words of Marie Kondo, do they all spark joy?  Continue reading “Keeper Shelf Challenge”