Thursday, December 20, 2012

Romance Fiction Has Come a Long Way

Photo: Public Domain via
The sultry duke ravishes the chaste duchess. 
The sexy pirate wins over the fair maiden in distress.

I used to think this encompassed the romance genre.

How wrong I was!

It took attending a Romance Writers of America conference for me to see how varied the romance genre is, and that *gasp* I read romance and didn't even realize it! A lot of books I read have romantic elements; any book that features a romantic relationship can technically work as a romance, although romance as a genre involves a happy ending.

Still, this could be romantic suspense, romantic comedy, paranormal romance, or romance in Young Adult ...  the list goes on and on!

NPR posted an article this week called: Don't Hide Your Harlequins: In Defense of Romance. The title says it all: why are we ashamed to admit we read romance? So much variety exists, with lots of contemporary and paranormal romance that push the boundaries. The covers have come a long way too. This article references two really great contemporary romance writers: Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Jennifer Crusie. Their books feature flawed characters who defy stereotypes. Plus, their books are funny. They've changed the way I view romance fiction.

Do you have a favorite romance author? Have you been known to downplay reading a romance when someone asks what you're reading?


  1. I like all of the books I read to have romance in them (I'm such a sucker for swoon), but I really like that romance to have a happy ending.

  2. I'm not a big believer in "guilty pleasures"; life's so tough, if I can find pleasure in a thing, I don't feel the need to hide that from anyone. Let others judge, if they must. I can't let them harsh my regency romance buzz. :-)
    Some Dark Romantic

  3. I don't think I have a favorite romance author, but I find I appreciate romance more when it's not the main feature of the book but something that happens along with the central plot. But there are exceptions to everything. If a romance was really well-written, I can still be hooked.


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