More Romance Positive News Coverage

Book CoverMan, this is getting to be soothing and enjoyable, all these intelligent articles about romance: The Toronto Star did a profile piece on author Susanna Kearsley following her nomination for the Romantic Novel of the Year for The Winter Sea, or, as it was titled in the UK, Sophia’s Secret.

Kearsley does a very mellow and effective job of explaining the misconceptions of romance:

“When you say that you write romantic fiction, there are a lot of people who have an image in their mind of the `bodice ripper,’” she says. “It’s the one term that most romantic fiction writers absolutely hate because it has no bearing on what people are writing.

“Romantic fiction in the broader sense can be any novel that has a love story somewhere in it. It can be a mystery or a historical novel, as long as long as it has this very strong romantic thread running through it.”

What’s interesting is that Kearsley wrote to me personally that she said a lot more about romance, but of course due to the pressure of column inches (snrk!) her remarks were edited down. She tells me:

What’s missing after that is the part where I went on and on about how diverse our genre is, and how some of the best writing can sometimes be found in category novels, and how Very Amazing the whole field of romance writing is.

Then he asked me to define “Romantic fiction” as the British view it, and I said: “Romantic fiction in the broader sense can be any novel that has a love story somewhere in it. It can be a mystery or a historical novel, as long as long as it has this very strong romantic thread running through it.”

Even with editing, Kearsley came across as a smart, dedicated writer of romantic fiction, or romance, or whatever you want to call it – so well played Ms. Kearsley, and congrats again on the nomination.

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General Bitching...

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  1. 1
    DS says:

    She’s an author I push on friends—even ones who say they would rather read a shampoo bottle than a romance novel.  I just wish her back list was easier to come by in the US.

  2. 2
    Lori says:

    She sounds smart and fabulous.  I have to go and see if I can find one of her books.

  3. 3
    she_reads says:

    thanks for sharing- Will be checking her out

  4. 4

    Oh, right on. I’ve always loved Kearsley’s books, and in fact just read two of them. I very much liked The Winter Sea, as well as her first non-supernatural, Every Secret Thing.

    But yeah, she is very hard to find in the US. I had to get both of these books in Vancouver. (Not that I minded being in Vancouver in the slightest, but. ;) )

    Also fair warning to anyone looking for Kearsley: they’re about to re-release The Winter Sea as Sophia’s Secret, so you may need to look for it under that title.

  5. 5
    SonomaLass says:

    I like the cover.  Can’t help wondering if the reporter took her comments more seriously not only b/c of the award nomination, but also b/c of the book cover.  Look Ma, my bodice is intact! No clinch!

  6. 6
    ev says:

    Look Ma, my bodice is intact! No clinch!

    And no man titty. More Wuthering Heights, which may also be why he took her a bit more seriously. I mean, they really can’t be taking romance seriously all of a sudden, could they? Huh?? Could we be that lucky?

    Besides if they take it seriously, what the hell will we have to bitch about?? Like running out of stuff is at all likely. :)

  7. 7
    Susan/DC says:

    I discovered Susanna Kearsley a few years ago and devoured all of her books I could find.  Around the time I finished her backlist, she took a hiatus, and I eagerly awaited her return so that there would be new Kearsley books to read.  At the moment I’ve got The Winter Sea in my TBR pile.  She’s not one to write series, but I kind of hope she writes a book for the guy who didn’t get the girl in Marianna, one of my favorites by her.  It’s similar to several of her other books in that there’s a touch of the paranormal, but it’s not a focus (there are, for example, no non-human characters).

  8. 8
    Teresa says:

    SK’s books are amazing – definitely go find and read them. And it doesn’t surprise me in the least that the bulk of her comments were cut. She’s extremely well-spoken on the topic and it’s a shame the editor decided it wasn’t important.

  9. 9
    Teresa says:

    Also meant to mention that Every Secret Thing was ALSO fantastic and I’m looking forward to her next book in that genre (kinda historical suspense/mystery).

  10. 10
    Leslie H says:

    I adore Ms Kearsley’s books! SHADOWY HORSES has: Archeology, Romans, Ghosts, psychics and Hot Scotsmen- Who on EARTH could ask for more?!

    I Nominate Gerard Butler for the Role of Davy in any theatrical version!

  11. 11
    Katherine says:

    I’ve been sold since Mariana, which was one of the best books I’d ever read and still remains one of my favorite books ever. and I agree with Leslie H about Shadowy Horses, which is my second favorite of Kearsley’s books. ghosts, Scotsman, throw in an Irishman for good measure… num.

  12. 12
    Leeann Burke says:

    I love Susanna Kearsley’s book. My favorite by far is Marianna.  I can’t believe I don’t have a copy of this book. I’ll have to pick up a copy ASAP.

  13. 13

    Sarah and everyone, thank you so much for this. Wow.

    But I can’t take the credit for sounding “smart” in the article—that, I suspect, was the skill of Vit Wagner, the Very Cool reporter who not only read the book before our interview, but didn’t ask even one of the usual, predictably condescending questions I’d expected, and somehow managed to condense a whole hour of my talking (and I talk A LOT) into something that made me sound “smart”. I’m in awe.

    About the books being hard to find in the US, I know, and I’m sorry. It’s not for lack of trying (just ask my amazing American agent) but so far most editors seem to think my work’s not sexy enough for the market down there.

    In the meantime, if you’re looking for The Winter Sea your best bet is to use the links on this page:
    http://www.susannakearsley.com/thewintersea_in_usa.html

    And again, thanks so much for all this. It means more than you know.

  14. 14
    Julie Leto says:

    Well, I would HOPE that the reporter from the Toronto Star would be fair to a romance writer since their parent company also owns Harlequin. (Torstar)

  15. 15
    Abby says:

    No, the Star is usually just as snarky as the rest of ‘em.

    Splendour Falls is my favourite Kearsley. So good!

  16. 16
    Lori says:

    After the enthusiastic recommendations I found a copy of The Shadowy Horses.  Leslie H. spoke the truth—-it was excellent.  It’s not really the sort of thing I usually read, but I thoroughly enjoyed it.  I’m hoping to be able to get my hands on more of Ms. Kearsley’s books.

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