In Defence of the Unlikeable Heroine

I Kissed a Rogue  (Covent Garden Cubs #3) by Shana Galen

No commentary; just an article from a few weeks ago that I thought I’d share. I chose the cover above because Galen’s book features a heroine who fits this theme perfectly.

In Defence of the Unlikeable Heroine

If you meander through the reviews of most romance novels, you’ll find certain terms showing up again and again in relation to the heroine. Unsympathetic. Bitchy. Slutty. Not good enough for the hero. Unlikeable.

The very traits that we so love in heroes—bold, uncompromising, dominant, sexually experienced—are the exact same ones that we pick apart in the heroines we read. We will forgive the hero many sins, but the heroine must stay inside of very specific parameters in order to gain our love. Or at least our tolerance.

(Read on at the link above.)

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The Week: 14th – 20th January

A little half-grown rosella that crashed into our window during our 40+ degree week-long heatwave.

Okay, summer, that’s enough now!

ARRA Finalists 2018

Persuasion 1995 – Recently I Learnt…

Happy 199th Birthday to Anne Brontë

Kristen Simmons: Mixed Race, Half Enough?

ARRA Finalists 2018

arra_logo-400x400 australian romance readers association

The Australian Romance Readers Association have announced the finalists for their 2018 awards. You can read about it on their blog HERE. Members can vote until the middle of next month.

Here are the nominees:

 

Favourite Paranormal Romance – proudly sponsored by Hachette Australia

Clash of Storms by Bec McMaster

Hot and Badgered by Shelly Laurenston

Hunt: Red Riding Hood Retold by Demelza Carlton

Lionheart by Thea Harrison

Ocean Light by Nalini Singh

The Chosen by Thea Harrison

When Darkness Follows by Athena Daniels

 

Favourite Sci Fi, Fantasy or Futuristic Romance

Almost Perfect by Tamara Martin

Breakeven by Michelle Diener

Cursed by Keri Arthur

Diamond Fire by Ilona Andrews

 

Favourite Short or Category Romance

A Baby in His In-Tray by Michelle Douglas

Destroyed by Jackie Ashenden

Getting Lucky by Avril Tremayne

Inherited for the Royal Bed by Annie West

Maggie’s Run by Kelly Hunter

Playing Dirty by Amy Andrews

Shock Heir for the Crown Prince by Kelly Hunter

Stranded with Her Greek Tycoon by Kandy Shepherd

The Million Pound Marriage Deal by Michelle Douglas

Tikka Chance on Me by Suleikha Synder

 

Favourite Historical Romance – proudly sponsored by Hachette Australia

Lord Garson’s Bride by Anna Campbell

Marry in Scandal by Anne Gracie

The Desert Nurse by Pamela Hart

The Devilish Duke by Maddison Michaels

The Juliet Code by Christine Wells

The Laird’s Christmas Kiss by Anna Campbell

The Laird’s Willful Lass by Anna Campbell

 

Favourite Contemporary Romance – proudly sponsored by Allen & Unwin

A Duke by Default by Alyssa Cole

Bad Bachelor by Stefanie London

Bittersweet by Jacquie Underdown

Captivated by Tessa Bailey and Eve Dangerfield

Chaser by Kylie Scott

Cinderella and the Geek by Christina Phillips

Resurrection by Karina Bliss

Snatched by Cathleen Ross

The Lost Pearl by Emily Madden

 

Favourite Romantic Suspense

At Your Service by Sandra Antonelli

Bloodtree River by Sarah Barrie

Dark in Death by JD Robb

Retribution by Diane Demetre

The Secrets of Palmerston House by Phillipa Nefri Clark

The Woman Left Behind by Linda Howard

Whitsunday Dawn by Annie Seaton

 

Favourite Continuing Romance Series

Bad Bachelors by Stefanie London

Dashing Widows by Anna Campbell

Marriage of Convenience by Anne Gracie

Outback Brides by Kelly Hunter, Victoria Purman, Cathryn Hein and Fiona McArthur

Sydney Smoke Rugby by Amy Andrews

The Lairds Most Likely by Anna Campbell

True North by Sarina Bowen

 

Favourite Debut Romance Author – proudly sponsored by Booktopia

Georgia Tingley

Helen Hoang

Laura Boon

Maddison Michaels

Marianne Delaforce

Marie Tremayne

Megan Mayfair

MV Ellis

Sandie Docker

 

Favourite Australian Romance Author 2018 – proudly sponsored by Booktopia

Amy Andrews

Anna Campbell

Anne Gracie

Annie West

Christina Phillips

Kandy Shepherd

Kelly Hunter

Kylie Scott

Michelle Douglas

Penelope Janu

Phillipa Nefri Clark

Sarah Williams

 

Favourite 2018 romance that made me cry

Bittersweet by Jacquie Underdown

The Lost Pearl by Emily Madden

Burning Fields by Alli Sinclair

Maggie’s Run by Kelly Hunter

Photos of You Tammy Robinson

 

Favourite 2018 romance with laugh-out-loud moment

Bad Bachelor by Stefanie London

Captivated by Tessa Bailey and Eve Dangerfield

Chaser by Kylie Scott

On the Right Track by Penelope Janu

Playing Dirty by Amy Andrews

The Love Coupon by Ainslie Paton

The Single Ladies of Jacaranda Retirement Village by Joanna Nell

 

Favourite Australian romance of 2018

Burning Fields by Alli Sinclair

Elsa’s Stand by Cathryn Hein

It Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time by Kylie Scott

King’s Reign Nina Levine

Maggie’s Run by Kelly Hunter

On the Right Track by Penelope Janu

Playing Dirty by Amy Andrews

Playing House by Amy Andrews

So Wild by Eve Dangerfield

The Dairy Farmer’s Daughter by Sarah Williams

The Lost Pearl by Emily Madden

The Red Dirt Road by Alissa Callen

Cover Love

A gorgeous cover for this retelling of Beauty and the Beast by Australian author Leife Shallcross. The book is due out in the United States (with a different cover) in February.

The Beast's Heart by Leife Shallcross Australian Cover

The Beast’s Heart by Leife Shallcross

A luxuriously magical retelling of Beauty and the Beast set in seventeenth-century France–and told from the point of view of the Beast himself.

I am neither monster nor man—yet I am both.

I am the Beast.

He is a broken, wild thing, his heart’s nature exposed by his beastly form. Long ago cursed with a wretched existence, the Beast prowls the dusty hallways of his ruined château with only magical, unseen servants to keep him company—until a weary traveler disturbs his isolation.

Bewitched by the man’s dreams of his beautiful daughter, the Beast devises a plan to lure her to the château. There, Isabeau courageously exchanges her father’s life for her own and agrees to remain with the Beast for a year. But even as their time together weaves its own spell, the Beast finds winning Isabeau’s love is only the first impossible step in breaking free from the curse . . .

RWA and Cockygate

Remember Cockygate? The drama that unfolded last year when a romance author somehow obtained a trademark for a common word and then took legal action against her fellow authors? (I did post about it rather a lot!)

Well, the trademark was surrendered some months ago, after the author realised that all she had achieved was the ruination of her career, but the anthology other authors put together in response to it, to raise money, was a success.

Romance Writers of America announced this week that a large portion of those funds have been donated to them:

rwa romance writers of america cockygate trademark dispute 2019

Article: How I fell in love with romance novels

Good article from The Guardian’s :

How I fell in love with romance novels

‘But that stereotype is wrong, both about me and about the novels. Many of them are genuinely good. Not just good romance novels: good books. And it’s time to break my silence publicly, if only to better be able to enthusiastically recommend my favourites to people I barely know and receive their recommendations in return.’

Wish List for 2019

New Year 2019

Other years I’ve written a longish post about what I want to see in books in the new year.

This year? It’s simple:

  • More world issues in romantic suspense (though I suspect I’m in the minority on that one!). More books like Brynn Kelly’s which involve characters from all different countries.
  • More Regency romances in the style of Madeline Hunter and Mary Balogh, books where it feels like it’s the Regency era.
  • More Victorian romances like Lisa Kleypas’ and Mimi Matthews’.

That’s it!