My Romance Novels, Let Me Show You Them - Part Deux, by Heather Osborn

We’re back in Wonderland, folks – a trip through Heather Osborn’s romance novel collection. Heather’s old romance and romance author collection is just… wow. This is the second of a three-part tour of her collection. Get some popcorn and have a look at the majesty. Some of these covers are so excellent, we’ve snarked them before – but they’re worth revisiting because… well, LOOK at them!


Name of a Shadow by Ann Maxwell aka Elizabeth Lowell, April, 1980. Look at that crazy art! The crystal gem harp, the flowy hair, the weird spiky plants. Man, I love old books.


The Jaws of Menx by Ann Maxwell aka Elizabeth Lowell, September 1981. The craziest cover art of them all. I don’t even know what’s happening here, but I think it involves volcanoes and sexy princesses.


Hot Touch by Deborah Smith, Loveswept, October 1989. This is seriously my favorite Loveswept. So good! It features a animal trainer heroine who can talk psychically with animals, and a veterinarian hero who runs a wildlife rescue. And despite what the cover implies, I don’t remember him: a) being 45, b) sporting an amazing mullet, and c) wearing cable knit sweaters in the Louisiana Bayou.


The Grand Finale by Janet Evanovich, May 1988. Anna Nicole Smith marries Bo Duke! At least, that would be what the cover implies.


Manhunt by Janet Evanovich, January 1989. Do you see how long this man’s forearm is? That can’t be right.


Naughty Neighbor by Janet Evanovich, April 1992. Despite appearances, this book does not star Jasmine Guy as the heroine, nor is she black, to the best of my knowledge.

Stay tuned for more trips to the awesomeness that is Heather’s bookshelves next week!

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    Laurel says:

    That first one could be a Spencer’s poster. Right next to the blacklights and the unicorn figurines.

    Also, is that cable knit sweater tucked in????

  2. 2
    Lindsay says:

    Until you said that that was a harp in the first cover, I thought it was some weird tentacled/amoebalike lifeform that was plastering itself to her chest.

  3. 3

    Are they riding tontons in the second cover?

  4. 4
    kristen says:

    Great covers! The first is my favorite!

    But that’s Luke Duke with Anna; Bo is the guy with the long arm. :)

  5. 5
    Silver James says:

    I am so glad I removed all liquids from my desk. And swallowed. A lot. No spit that way.

    What’s up with those Duke boys?!? Luke looks like he’s about to bite a chunk out of Anna Nicole’s neck. Did he turn vamp when we weren’t lookin’?

    WTH is that tsunami wave thingy behind Bo Duke and the chicky he’s with? And WTF is UP with his hands? OMGWTFBBQ they’re HUGE! Make you wonder if that old wives’ tale is true, yeah?

    Spam word: him64 I…am so not goin’ there!

  6. 6
    Miri says:

    Hot Touch = The untold story of Lovejoy and Lady Jane.

  7. 7

    I love how the male cover models for the first two Loveswepts appear to be the same dude. Busy man, busier mullet.

  8. 8
    Tamara Hogan says:

    Crystal gem harp?  I thought she was being attacked by an oversized, pissed off starfish.

  9. 9
    AmandaG says:

    I thought that the first cover had a hero who shifted into a starfish or something (to save her from the underwater shadow). 

    In the last cover it kind of looks like the dude had a bleach accident with his suit.  Or is that just me?

  10. 10
    LG says:

    Ann Maxwell! I want those books, even if they do have terrible covers – a couple Maxwell books with “romance” on the spine convinced me that maybe the romance genre wasn’t going to be as bad as I thought it would be.  And then when I went to hunt down some of her books in a used bookstore years later, I found those same couple books in the SciFi section with hideous covers. :)

  11. 11
    Manda says:

    The arm on that guy is going to give me nightmares.

  12. 12
    AgTigress says:

    Count me as yet another who read the ‘harp’ on the first Ann Maxwell title as some alien sea-creature:  my immediate visual association was with Japanese octopus-pornography.
    I’m just looking at my own copy of Hot Touch (same picture, but a different background colour—green—on the UK edition), and it does look as though the sweater is tucked in at the back.  It’s too short anyway.

  13. 13
    Elise Logan says:

    Oh, you make me want to take photos of all my Loveswepts and snark them. There is so much worthy of snarkage.

    So fun.

  14. 14
    Kalen Hughes says:

    The Grand Finale appears to be the first zombie romance. That dude is so about to gnaw his way to brains!

  15. 15
    LG says:

    @Kalen Hughes – I thought the same thing, although I was figuring vampire. He looks like he’s getting ready to gnaw on her neck, and she doesn’t even notice, silly thing.

  16. 16
    Julie T says:

    @Jessica – My first thought was Ton-tons too! Though I have been watching an inordinate amount of Star Wars lately…

    Also, the first one I want to be about a human girl getting attacked by a bunch of mermen who heard the siren call of her harp. I can’t shake that that picture is underwater, but it is clearly not because the moon is right there!

  17. 17
    Kate L says:

    Strumming a harp has never put a look like that on my face..
    Maybe I’m doing it wrong..

  18. 18
    Beki says:

    I was thinking it was the very first of the vampire romances…. of course in that leopard print dress, she’s probably a shifter herself and he’s going to come up with more than he can handle.

  19. 19
    Amanda from Baltimore says:

    No wonder Janet Evanovich gave up writing romances and switched over to the Stephanie Plum books. Those covers are just…appalling in their awfulness. or awful in their appallingness. They are staggeringly awkward.

    I hosted Ms. Evanovich at a bookstore once, and she’s very funny. When someone in the audience asked why she quit romances and moved to writing about a NJ bounty hunter, she said she was tired of having to find new euphemisms for “dick.”  Apparently writing “throbbing maleness” got to be old.

  20. 20
    donna says:

    And it sounds like it hurts.

  21. 21
    Kalen Hughes says:

    @LG: It is vaguely Fright Night, LOL!

  22. 22
    Ann Stephens says:

    That’s a crystal harp on the first pic? Thank goodness, I thought the heroine was being held captive by a Horny Mutant Starfish until the Alien Shadow Guys could decide what to do with her.

    OTOH, the Naughty Neighbor cover proves that even frumpy women with bad hairdos can find True Love. Sort of sweet, in a ‘someone-call-Stacy-&-Clinton-now!’ way.

  23. 23
    Tina C. says:

    Naughty Neighbor by Janet Evanovich, April 1992. Despite appearances, this book does not star Jasmine Guy as the heroine, nor is she black, to the best of my knowledge.

    That’s not Jasmine Guy.  That’s Lisa Bonet, early Cosby Show years.  (Right about the same time as this book was published, I bet!)  I am surprised that no comment was made about the placement and freakish size of her left hand, though. 

    Oh, and add me to the list of people that thinks that the hero of The Grand Finale is about to take a bite out of the heroine’s face.  Or maybe her ear.  Either way, it’s disturbing.

  24. 24
    Cath Bilson says:

    I can’t believe no one has yet pointed out than on Manhunt they are standing in front of a window shaped like an erection. WTF?

    keyword: recently69… probably, yes!!!

  25. 25
    The Other Laura H. says:

    My what big… teeth Bo has…

  26. 26
    Kristina says:

    Me Gusta!  the first two I would never have looked twice at back in my early romance reading days.  They look too Sci-Fi for what my tastes were back then.  But the Loveswepts are pure goodness!  I ate up Loveswepts like nobodies business back in the day and had the subscription to them.  Hot Touch is in my keeper pile.  I was always upset that they didn’t make her scar more promenant.  You see it a little there on the cover but with how majorly upset she was and central to the story it was, you would think it would have been bigger.

    Thanks for this!  Love the trip down memory lane.  I now have to find the box I put all my catagories in for safe keeping.

  27. 27
    Kristina says:

    BTW, those tidal waves/erection windows were the signature of Loveswept before they changed to the covers you see in Hot Touch and Naughty Neighbor.  They all have them.

  28. 28
    Saam says:

    Ahhh, Loveswept. I collect these & can confirm that there are many dodgy covers. The old wave ones are great. When they decided to go to floral covers in the middle of the series the books really lost their appeal.

  29. 29
    Merrian says:

    I own all the Ann Maxwell’s shown still – I bought them new!  I re-read them when I moved last and they are still keepers.  As someone who was solidly a sci fi reader it wasn’t until I began reading romance seriously in these past few years that I even twigged that they were romances – our mindsets are fascinating things….

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