This month’s TBR prompt, “Animals”, was a bit of a head scratcher. We both love animals, but that doesn’t necessarily translate to animal-centered romances. Lynn found a cozy romance between a cat lover and a dog lover, while Caz found herself a m/m romantic suspense featuring a cat-owning lead. So, what do you think about animals in romance novels? Any fictional pets you adore?
More Than Neighbors by Shannon Stacey
I love animals in real life, but I tend not to read lots of animal stories in fiction. I’ve been burned too many times by sad endings, or in the other extreme, I’ve encountered way too many cutesy puppies and kittens. However, I knew I loved Shannon Stacey’s books, so More Than Neighbors seemed perfect for this month’s TBR prompt.
This book is a sweet, cozy romance with […]
There’s something about a royalty romance that resonates in the hearts of readers. Is it our secret desire to find out we belong to royalty? Is it the fairy-tale aspect of the read that offers an escape from our own troubles? Is it simply because so many of us don’t have a monarchy in place, so the mystery of it all holds our intrigue?
Whatever draws the reader to royal stories, the author feels the need to offer a royal expectation.
In writing my own royal stories, I thought creating a fictional country would offer the best of both worlds. I could create my own rules but base it on enough realism to make the story seem believable.
Another big fixture in a royal romance is the cast of characters. There’s always one person who hates being a royal and can cause some havoc—which makes for interesting reading, in my opinion. There’s the royal […]
Over the weekend, my mom, Dr. Feelgood, and I watched Mr. Malcolm’s List. The film, based on a novel and then a short film by Suzanne Allain, tells the tale of the machinations of a proud woman, Julia, who, after being spurned by wealthy and wildly handsome single Mr. Malcolm, decides to have her revenge. Julia’s hilariously chatty cousin Lord Cassidy tells her that Mr. Malcolm has a list of ten qualities he wishes in a wife–elegant family, musically talented, kind and honest to name a few. Julia decides to turn the tables on Mr. Malcolm by recruiting her lovely–inside and out–childhood friend Selina to, using the list, trick Mr. Malcolm into falling in love. The plan is, of course, for Selina to then reject Mr. Malcolm. It will startle no one who has ever read a romance to know that the plan does not go according to plan.
If you love period pieces, Mr. Malcolm’s List will […]
Welcome back to Setting Smackdown, where two different romance settings brawl it out for first place in our hearts! (If you missed our first Smackdown, Georgian vs. Victorian, you can find it HERE!).
This edition of Setting Smackdown: France Vs. Italy!
Yes, it’s the Battle of the Latin Lovers, as the lands of two Romance languages duke it out to be the favorite of Romancelandia. Will it be Paris, the City of Lights, or Venice, the Floating City? A Provençal lavender field or a Sicilian vineyard? Pasta or patisserie? Bring it on!
ROUND ONE: Contemporaries!
Harlequin sends Italy out swinging with its inexhaustible supply of Italian tycoons, condés, and vineyard owners. Try Liz Fielding’s Flirting with Italian, for a charming tale […]
Another month has flown by and it’s time for another look at the new and upcoming releases the AAR team is most excited about reading over the coming weeks. As always, it’s not a comprehensive list, but a selection, and your comments as to what YOU’RE looking forward to are most welcome. If you ever feel like sending me some titles you’d like included, you’re welcome to drop me a line!
Releasing week of 5th Sept 2022
Weird confession: I struggle with stories where all the children have extremely distinctive names. I attribute this to growing up in a town with an infamous family who had six children and the elder five all had long unusual names that began with the letter R–there was one of these and one of these, just to name two–but the youngest child was named Fred. One of my least favorite things about the Bridgertons is their alphabetized names. And yes, I realize I have an unusually distinctive name–this would by why all four of my kids have extremely conventional names. I’m not saying it’s rational, I’m just saying it takes me out of a story.
How about for you? What are your writing pet peeves in romance? (I also dislike works overly rife with exclamation marks.)
If you are one of the romance readers who are pretty much over reading about billionaires, this month’s TBR prompt is right up your alley. Since the prompt was “blue collar”, I started by digging into my stash of category romances. I tend to like stories about everyday, non-billionaire people, so I figured this would be an easy prompt for me as I tend to pick up a fair number of books that could qualify. Oh, I was so wrong. After a few false starts (including a book where apparently the conflict sprang from one lead’s parent having murdered the other), I switched gears and took a look at my Kindle TBR. Almost immediately, I found a romantic comedy that was a winner. If you’re not in the mood for comedy, Caz found a very moving and emotional m/m romance featuring a couple affected by a traumatic, life-changing injury. And the blue collar prompt? Well, both of these […]
If you’ve been in Romancelandia for longer than twenty minutes, you have probably noticed that the Regency reigns supreme when it comes to historicals. (Yes, for the purposes of romance settings, we’ll consider “long Regency” books to be Regency – that is, books set from around 1795 to the coronation of Victoria in 1837, despite the actual Regency-regency only lasting from 1811-1820). It’s the go-to era for a historical setting, giving us the Ton, Almack’s, the empire waisted gown, the Napoleonic wars, Gunter’s frozen ices licked in slow motion by Regé-Jean Page in Bridgerton…
Where was I, again?
Right. The Regency rules. But what is our SECOND favorite UK historical setting?
Time for a SETTING SMACKDOWN!
Don’t let the pastels fool you – these Neoclassical legends are gladiators through and through! IN THE BLUE CORNER, wearing powdered wigs and panniers, weighing […]
Whether it’s on TV–I am currently exceedingly annoyed at Virgin River, Tokyo Vice, and Stranger Things–or in books, I don’t like cliffhanger endings. Nope. Give me a story where–like the TV show Unforgotten, or Karin Slaughter’s Will Trent series–where most of the storylines introduced are resolved by the season’s/book’s end. Don’t get me wrong–I love following characters over time but I am not here for having to wait a year to know what happened to them.
So, what are some books with cliffhangers? And am I wrong? Are any worth reading?