mexicocity The Special Title Lists are one of the more popular features at AAR. They’re also one of the more interactive. Nearly a year ago, as a result of reader requests, we once again began updating the Special Title lists. Since we started the process we’ve updated 19 lists and have begun several new lists.

Earlier this month I wrote here about wanting to start a new Special Title List for Big City Romances. You gave me a lot of great suggestions for some of your favorite romances set in big cities. And after reading some of your comments and reviewing some of my own concerns, we’ve decided to limit the list to contemporary romances set in big cities. As the description of the list will note,

“But what about historical romances set in big cities, you ask? Check out the Special Settings List here at AAR, and make suggestions the next time it’s open for submissions. In the future we may give alternate reality/ paranormal/ steampunk/ futuristic/and time travel romances their own list, but for now, we’re sticking with contemporaries.”

Our plans are to open the Contemporary Big City Romances list up for submissions sometime in July for the first time. It will be organized by city, and that’s where I could use some help. While I have plenty of romances set in Chicago, New York, Seattle, and London, there are some other big cities that could use a few suggestions.

To get a feel for what might constitute a “big city” in the U.S., I checked out the U.S. Census site and discovered some surprises among the current Top 25 list of “largest U.S. cities” based on population. I’ve marked “None” next to the top 25 cities for which I have no current, “great” contemporary romances. Do you know of any? If so, please add them to the comments below.

(1) New York, New York

(2) Los Angeles, California

(3) Chicago, Illinois

(4) Houston, Texas

(5) Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

(6) Phoenix, Arizona –None

(7) San Antonio, Texas –None

(8) San Diego, California

(9) Dallas, Texas – None

(10) San Jose, California – None

(11) Indianapolis, Indiana – None

(12) Jacksonville, Florida – None

(13) San Francisco, California

(14) Austin, Texas – None

(15) Columbus, Ohio – None

(16) Fort Worth, Texas– None

(17) Louisville/Jefferson County, Kentucky – None

(18) Charlotte, North Carolina– None

(19) Detroit, Michigan– None

(20) El Paso, Texas– None

(21) Memphis, Tennessee– None

(22) Nashville-Davidson, Tennessee – None

(23) Baltimore, Maryland– None

(24) Boston, Massachusetts

(25) Seattle, Washington

And as before, we’re not interested in a couple who live in the suburbs of a major city and makes one brief trip in to the big city in the evening; we’re interested in city dwellers, or temporary residents who spend their time working, eating, and living in the city itself. The primary action should be taking place in the city.

And then we come to the largest cities in the world, and things are wide open. We have a few romances set in London, Paris, and Rome, but they don’t even make the list for the 20 largest world-wide cities by population. If you have any ideas now, please list them in the comments section below. And if not, look for the list to open up officially in July. (And since I’m still working on the dreaded HTML the list won’t go “public” until it opens in July.) I’d love to know of any great contemporary romances you’ve read set in the 20 largest cities listed below. I’d also love to have some other major cities represented on the list when it first opens including Quebec City, Montreal, Toronto, Dublin, Edinburgh, Madrid, Athens, well, you get the idea.

1. Tokyo, Japan

2. Jakarta, Indonesia

3. Seoul, South Korea

4. Delhi, India

5. Shanghai, China

6. Manila, Philippines

7. Karachi, Pakistan

8. New York, USA

9. Sao Paulo, Brazil

10. Mexico City, Mexico

11. Cairo, Egypt

12. Beijing, China

13. Osaka, Japan

14. Mumbai (Bombay), India

15. Guangzhou, China

16. Moscow, Russia

17. Los Angeles, USA

18. Calcutta, India

19. Dhaka, Bangladesh

20. Buenos Aires, Argentina

If you have any ideas now, please list them in the comments section below. And if not, look for the list to open up officially in July. (And since I’m still working on the dreaded coding the list won’t go “public” until it opens in July.)


– LinnieGayl Kimmel

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I enjoy spending as much time as I can between the covers of a book, traveling through time and around the world. When I'm not having adventures with fictional characters, I'm an attorney in Virginia and I love just hanging out with my husband, little man, and the cat who rules our house.