23 April 2009

Girl Talk Thursday - Romance Novels

I'm going to come clean about this, and you, Kindly Interwebs, are not going to start suspicioning that I'm addle brained. At least not for what I'm about to say.

My name is Jennifer Grace and I read trashy girl smut.

I love romance novels. No. Really.

I've finally gotten to a point where I don't feel guilty admitting my love of The Romance, because hey, sometimes I just want to read fluff, okay? It makes me happy. If you want to judge me on that, you can suck it.

It started when I was nine or ten. You see, I always read whatever my sister was reading, so there are quite a few genres that I started a bit young. Anyhow, it started in or around fourth grade, with the Sweeping Gothic Mystery Romance that ends with a single impassioned kiss. These still hold a special place in my heart, and I still make time to re-read the good ones.
Favorite authors from this period of romantic leanings: Victoria Holt (who is the same person as) Philippa Carr, Jill Tattersall, and Phyllis A. Whitney. My all-time favorite book from this moon-eyed period/genre obsession/whatever is The Cry of the Owl by Margaret Mayhew, found by my sister at the Aptos Junior High library, subsequently hunted down at the regular public library, and checked out repeatedly by both of us for YEARS. I'd check it out again now, except it's not there anymore.

Romance novels that I hate:
  • The poorly written kind (this should go without say).
  • 97% of those set in modern day. I loves me a good historical romance.
  • Any where the man has a mustache. Or at least, if they talk too much about the mustache. My willing suspension of disbelief does not allow me to love a man with a mustache.
  • Incest (ahem Wyndham Legacy no I cannot get beyond the fact that they are first cousins, especially since you keep pointing out how much they resemble one another)
  • Any where the man straight up rapes the woman as if that's even remotely okay (Karen Robards I AM LOOKING AT YOU).
  • Books with excessive use of terms such as "velvety folds," "man rod," etc. I can accept limited use of these terms (especially as I prefer the historical romance, and I've noticed that's a bit more prevalent), but sometimes it gets to be too much.
  • Any book where they start out in love and then it's the world keeping them apart le sigh. I like the ones where they start out hating each other and there's a proper amount of tension to be frothed up into sexual tension.
Now I'm off to REAL LIFE Girl Talk Thursday. My jobby job is sending me to a Women At Work Retreat.


  1. Hehe. You said "manrod" hahahaha.

    Clearly, I'm mature, but it's ok because I too love trashy novels. (Romance or otherwise!) Jennifer Cruise, Sandra Brown, the smuttier the better! No Fabio look alikes on the cover though, please.

  2. Smut. I love that word.

    Are you doing truncated posts now?

  3. I LOVE me some historical romance. Particularly the Cowboy ones (lots of tension, sexual tension, mad crazy sex at the end because they can't deny their love!) and anything set in England/Colonial/Far Prissier Times Than These.

    Love it!

    Also, I hate mustaches. And I think you're my twin.

  4. Just saw that bit about the Women at Work retreat. You must share!

  5. I've never been able to get into romance books, but I'll admit to liking some sci-fi/fantasy stuff. However, I can appreciate romance as a genre and I understand it's appeal. Also, I thought you'd enjoy knowing that one of my librarian friends is a "Harlequin Ambassador"! I'm not sure what exactly that entails, but I'm sure it's awesome.

  6. I'm not much of a fan of romance novels.

    I love erotica, though, as long as it's light on the goofy romance stuff.

  7. I LOVE the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. Absolutely LOVE. I've read them all repeatedly and they are seriously meaty. They are historical but also, time travel.

  8. Definitely do not read Wideacre by Philippa Gregory, that has incest coming out the arse! nasty and gross.

  9. I'm all for erotica too, but the romance novel....meh. I can take it or leave it.

  10. This is interesting. As much as I'm a nose-in-book lady, and super into archetypes and themes, I hadn't really thought of the "this type of love" in love. Which is weird because 95% (I just made up that statistic) of songs are about love, and many books and movies develop the love interest.

    You point out the star-crossed loves, the hate-turned-lust, the sweeping romance...I just hadn't thought of it. Love as theme.

    I overlooked much of our media culture! Call me Sherlock.

    Man. Now I'll be spending the evening thinking about common love plots and love archetypes. Cool!

  11. oh...someday when you are out of fun things to read, you might try my friend's novel -- they are billed as mysteries but there is plenty of romance going on...
    She has several series... only one of which is out right now:
    Feint of Art, author: Hailey Lind
    Shooting Gallery
    Brush with Death
    oh...and they are a series, she just got a new deal for book 4 but it won't be out until next year sometime. These are about an ex-art forger who happens to run into dead bodies and cute guys.

    She has a new series, with a new pen name: Juliet Blackwell
    This series will be about a witch who owns a vintage clothing store in San Francisco
    First one coming out in July, called Second Hand Spirits.

  12. I don't read much romance anymore, but I prefer fantasy and historical stuff. Modern romance novels seem like the most boring thing on the planet to me, and I also don't like the possibility of anything hitting close to home. I don't mind reading about a sorceress getting it on, it's not like I'm a sorceress. But a lady my age getting it on like crazy? That would just irk me. Haha.

  13. A good romance novel can get you through a long weekend. I search and search for one every Memorial Day Weekend. I finish it whilst we camp in the mountains. I'm with you, it must not be set in modern day. It takes something out of it, not sure what, but it does.

  14. I like to hold romance novels between my quivering thighs and feel its throbbing covers.

  15. I've never heard you sound like such a softy before. I kinda dig it! I love a complex woman!

  16. Historical romance smut ROCKS!

    I love reading that fluff in between mind-farking books. Just finished the Virgin's Tale....that kind of spent me a bit emotionally. After 'Graceling' I'm going to get myself into a trashy trashy book.

    Some of the BESTEST...
    'The Witch & the Warrior" - Karyn Monk
    'Once a Warrior' - Same Author
    'The Rose and the Warrior' - Same Author....

    huh. I'm sensing a theme.

    I need me a naked highland muscle man.

    Scotland road trip anyone?

  17. Wait, there's incest in romance novel? Rape? How are these things romantic? Clearly, my education in romance novels is sorely lacking but that's disturbing. The pointing out how the first cousings resemble each other made me giggle though - I may have to read the book now just so I can laugh some more. Uh-oh. :(

  18. it all started out as a joke, but I started a romance novel for my best friend Christina. It was going to be a Christmas present, but I haven't had time to write much of it. Where does that put me? Writing a romance novel? Oh LORD!!!!

  19. I read romance novels for a good 6 months in high school before I figured out they were romance novels. My friend lent me a bunch and I loved them because they had sex, and the girl always got the guy (for the most part) and then one day i went to the bookstore and realized they were in the romance aisle.

    Whatever, books are my porn. Lol