I love reading romance novels.  I mostly like historicals and ones without a whole lot of explicitly-described sex.  But, I have a confession.

I can’t remember the characters or a plot of a romance novel

I see people on Twitter answering questions about romance books like “Who are some of your favorite heroes?”

They list:

  • (1) books they liked with the
  • (2) name of the character and
  • (3) why they liked him.

I stare at my screen in awe.  I couldn’t state any of those three things about most of the books I’ve read.  

I feel really bad about this.  I know people are working really hard to write these books.  Then I go and consume them like popcorn and have no memory of the event afterwards.  

I’m not exaggerating here.  Traditional, white historical romances are complete black holes in my mind.  I completely enjoy the ones I read.  But then I finish a book and look for another and it goes bad.  

Steps to reading a new romance:

  1. See new book that doesn’t sound regressive and horrible
  2. Check Goodreads to see if I’ve read it before
  3. Be surprised that I have
  4. Read the synopsis again and wait for any hint of recognition

I can’t tell you what these books are about.  I liked the last one enough to read the whole series.  No idea about any of those books either.  I’ve read these all in the last month or so.  Embarrassing.

It definitely tends to be books with white, upper class heroines that run together on me.  I have a better memory for working class heroines and/or heroines of color.  (I never remember the heroes of books.)

I can sort of tell you about these ones.  A little.  I liked them.  You should read them.  Likewise, I give a blanket recommendation to anything by Courtney Milan but don’t ask me to tell which book is which without reading a synopsis.  

Is it just me?  Does anyone else have books completely fall out of their mind?

One Reply to “Worst Romance Reader Ever”

  1. [* Shield plugin marked this comment as “trash”. Reason: Failed GASP Bot Filter Test (checkbox) *]
    I typically have to have the Goodreads page with the synopsis up while writing the review, and may need to check that for their names multiple times WHILE WRITING MY REVIEW, immediately upon finishing the book. You are not alone. If I’m going to read 175+ books in a year, there just is not hard drive space in my brain to keep all of the characters, plot lines, etc in there. I absolutely rely on Goodreads to tell me if I’ve read a book before (and if I liked it!) I try to jot at least a few things down in the “Review” box so I can remember why I liked it or not, but sometimes past-me was not very helpful. (“Holy Hannah, this book is amazeballs! Gimme the next one right now, PUT IT IN MY FACE!!” isn’t really conducive to recommending a book to someone…) There are certainly stand-out books that are truly favorites that I could tell you a little more about, and they tend to be the ones I’ve reread at least one (The Hating Game by Sally Thorne is about Lucy and Josh and I actually have a few favorite lines in this one, especially when Josh tells Lucy that she is “deeply weird.”) But mostly they all sort of blur together and while I can tell you that I really enjoy Regency historical romances by Vivienne Lorret, please don’t ask me to name any characters or give you plot points without a Goodreads refresher first (actually, Briar Bourne works for the Bourne Matrimonial Agency, and Nicholas is a rake… I actually kind of remember this one, and I finished it about 4 books ago, which is impressive for me!)

    TL;DR: Goodreads is my brain now.

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