Bitches, Bosoms, and Mavis, Syndicated Across Australia

Jane Sullivan, a syndicated newspaper columnist across Australia, has written a piece about romance fiction. Smart Bitches, Beyond Heaving Bosoms, and Mavis titled Romance fiction deserves respect.

Hell, yeah, it does. And it sounds like Sullivan is a fan of the genre herself.

o thank Eros for two Americans, Sarah Wendell and Candy Tan, who dreamed up Mavis for their book Beyond Heaving Bosoms: The Smart Bitches’ Guide to Romance Novels. It’s an unashamed celebration of their great passion, and they make no apology for it….

This is the kind of analysis we want: down to earth, cheeky, motivated by an extensive knowledge and sincere love of the genre, yet merciless on the quality control. I’d love to see a couple of Smart Bitches let loose on literary fiction.

Whoa. Thank you, ma’am! And hell yeah. If you’re a romance fan, Ms. Sullivan, I’d love to know what your favorites are. Thanks for celebrating the romance all over Oz. My fangirl crush on Australia has reached new heights now.

 

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General Bitching...

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  1. 1
    Dave Doolin says:

    Romance novels.  Chick porn.  Gotta love it!  Ok, well, not all of it… Jane Austen, yes.  Danielle Steele, ugh.  I lean toward the Sci Fi end of it myself. 

    But then again I’ll read – and enjoy – just about anything well written.

  2. 2
    lunarocket says:

    There’s scifi romance novels? I’ve gotta know! I’ve been reading scifi for years, but the “classics” Niven, Asimov, Herbert, Vinge, etc. I only got into romance this year. Please, point me in the right direction? Oh, and it would be nice if the plots were good? (yeah, I know, I’m hard to please.) ;-)

  3. 3
    Ashley Ladd says:

    I was born a romance fan. I love reading your blog and look forward to reading your book.

  4. 4
    Brooks*belle says:

    Love that she mentioned the Playboy Sheikh’s Virgin Stable Girl. I still snicker when I think about that review and following comments.

    And totally—“Thank Eros” for Candy and Sarah (and the bonnie members of the bitchery!)  =)

  5. 5
    Keziah Hill says:

    There’s scifi romance novels? I’ve gotta know!
    Linnea Sinclair
    http://www.linneasinclair.com/books.html

    So when are the SB’s coming to visit us? :-)

  6. 6
    Gwynnyd says:

    SF romance?  For an oldie but a goodie, try
    Anne McCaffery’s Restoree

    I’m never sure about html code, so I hope that link works…

  7. 7
    Dave Doolin says:

    My goodness!  Of course there’s Sci Fi Romance! 

    Isn’t there?

    Well, ok, maybe not so many of the bodice-ripping variety… now that I think of it, I haven’t dug into it as much as I could have.  Ok, I admit it: I would feel just a teeny bit strange buying one of those massively thick alternate-dimension vampire romance alien romance save-the-planet stories.  It’s the cover graphics of course… the scantily clad yet strangely… virile…? and boobilicious heroine facing down the dastardly but loveable raised-by-aliens vampire/engineer with self-esteem problems. 

    So my mind makes this connection: Mostly naked chick with blaster being ravished by irresistible alien vampire

    < ==>

    sci fi romance.

    Luna, I’m drawing a blank the Sci Fi equivalent of, say, “Spymasters Lady,” but try Left Hand of Darkness by LeGuin.  I think it’s very romantic myself.  Just no ravishing.  McCafferey and Cheryh are pretty good. Maybe not so much ravishing, but certainly a fair bit of ill-fated desire and unrequited passion.  At least some of them (?)  IIRC?  It’s been awhile. 

    Maybe I’ll check this out.  Quitting caffeine Monday, won’t be up for much more than researching the state of the art in the sci fi romance sub-sub-genre.

  8. 8
    Anna/ocelott says:

    Ann Aguirre’s Grimspace and the two books that follow it are really wonderful sci fi romance.

  9. 9

    There’s scifi romance novels? I’ve gotta know!

    For reviews and links take a look at The Galaxy Express and Alien Romances.

  10. 10
    vicki says:

    Nice to see something that doesn’t make one feel ashamed to be Australian, for a change.

  11. 11
    AgTigress says:

    Nice to see something that doesn’t make one feel ashamed to be Australian, for a change.

    Oh, come on!  :)
    Every nationality has some things to be proud of and other things to be ashamed of.

  12. 12
    lunarocket says:

    Heck yeah, vicki, Australia is COOL! Lot’s of great things have come out of Australia. And I’m thinking back to Sister Kenny, not just the good looking actors and actresses that have popped up over the years. Plus, you’ve got such great accents!! At least to your average American. :-)

    Back to scifi; I’ve read much Anne McCaffrey, though I believe not Restoree, the description that appeared way back in the SFBC probably turned me off. But back then I was into “hard” scfi and the only romance books I’d read were the Harlequins my grandma had when I visited her in summer as a teenager. I did not find them very good and never read another official romance novel till a couple years ago.

    I love Cherryh and I’ve read LeGuin, never considered anything of theirs romance either. I’ll look at the lists others have provided though. :-)

  13. 13

    That was a great article. Australia is cool and not just because my peep Natalie Hatch lives there.

    Laura, thanks for mentioning my blog.

    A few other science fiction romance recommendations:

    UNMASKED by C.J. Barry

    ALPHA by Catherine Asaro

    HOPE’S FOLLY by Linnea Sinclair

    ENDLESS BLUE by Wen Spencer (technically SF with romantic elements but the romance comprises a significant subplot)

    MOONSTRUCK by Susan Grant

    STARJACKED by Karin Shah

    INTERSTITIAL by Ann Somerville

    THE OUTBACK STARS by Sandra McDonald

    THE HIDDEN WORLDS by Kristen Landon

    If anyone wants more, email me with your reading interests and I’ll do my best to match you up with more recs: sfrgalaxy “at” gmail.com

  14. 14

    Ooh, I love me some sci-fi romance!

    All of Sharon Shinn’s Samaria books, Jenna Starborn, Wrapt in Crystal, Heart of Gold

    Bujold, queen of space opera! (and more)

    I second McCaffrey’s Restoree, and many of the Pern books are heavily relationship-driven, esp. F’lar and Lessa’s book.

    Connie Willis often has romantic threads in her stories, and she’s co-written a couple books with Cynthia Felice, including the very romantic Promised Land. Check them both out~

    Firebird by Kathy Tyers – the classic enemies to lover trope.

    Plus the above mentioned Ann Aguirre, Linnea Sinclear and Ilona Andrews – woot!

  15. 15

    My fangirl crush on Australia has reached new heights now.

    ::jumps up and down::

    Ooh, OOH!  Mr Kotter…Mr KOTTAH!

    :P

    I’m an Aussie (going on 15yrs now!)…yes, we do kick some ass. ;)

    If you or Candy ever make your way down here, we should organise a ‘Smart Bitches, Trashy Books’ event – complete with a shrine of sorts in your honour.  Oh yes sirree! :D

    Great article, that.  But nay on the Fabio ‘setting women’s hearts aflutter’ caption – er, NO, don’t think so. :D

  16. 16
    Mary says:

    Have just found this site, very entertaining!  I can’t believe Jo Beverley didn’t make it onto the list for best romance, especially when people were nominating authors. 
    Romance in Sci Fi?  Try Cheryl J Franklin’s Fire Lord series.  Also, The Madness Season by C S Friedman – vampire and shape changing blob (if I remember correctly, it has been a long time, but it is still on the shelf and reread often).

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