I’m an unapologetic romance reader. I specifically like historical romances in just about any time period.
My grandmother got me started reading them. She subscribed to Harlequin and got books mailed to her. She read all the new sweet Regency romances. Sweet romances means that there was no sex in them. Sometimes there would be a really racy one where they kissed before marriage. Usually, there was a wedding at the end of the book and then there would be an epilogue where children have magically appeared. The children were truly a miracle!
She’d give them to my mother and I to read. We called them the smut books because they were the exact opposite. A few years ago we went to England on a smut book tour we designed to hit a lot of the major places these books took place. We went around London and made sure to go to Bath to take the waters in the Pump Room.
I got away from reading romance for a while but now I’m back full force. I still prefer books with no sex in them but that is difficult to find now. Most of the time I skip over the descriptions of sex in the books. It’s boring.
I really like the stories though. To be a romance book the plot has to focus on the main couple and there has to be a happy ending. There are times when you just don’t want to read sad books. You want to know that everything is going to be alright in the end. Since you know the author has those constraints it can be interesting to see how they creatively work around them to surprise the audience with a unique plot.
I’m super picky when it comes to romances. I rely on fans on Twitter with similar tastes to me to give recommendations. When I pick on my own I tend to find books that are too poorly written, have outrageous plots, are bordering on erotica instead of romance, or are boring. Romance fans are loyal. When we find an author we like, we read everything they’ve ever written.