About the Smart Bitches

Howdy! Welcome to our “About Us” page, where we can wank on without limit as to who we are, and why we’re here. If you came to this page looking for how to contact us, there is a whole other area for that. Follow the pretty red hyperlinks.

SB-TB Books Meet the Bitches Contact Us

Once Upon a Smart & Sassy Time…

Smart Bitches Trashy Books began in 2005 as a community of romance readers eager to talk about which romance novels rocked their worlds, and which ones made them throw the book with as much velocity as possible. Since then our site has grown to include a community of incredibly smart and savvy romance readers, as well as folks who are curious about all those fuchsia books with the tangerine skies and turquoise ruffles they used to see in the drug stores.

Some Books Happened Along the Way

Beyond Heaving Bosoms: The Smart Bitches’ Guide to Romance

Beyond Heaving Bosoms In April 2009, our book Beyond Heaving Bosoms: The Smart Bitches’ Guide to Romance, was published by Touchtone/Fireside, and is now in use in undergraduate courses at Yale, Princeton, and DePaul.

What’s this book about? Find out more→

This smart book is available from:

  • Amazon
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Kobo
  • IndieBound
  • All Romance
Everything I Know About Love, I Learned from Romance Novels

Everything I Know ABout Love I Learned from Romance Novels In 2011, Sarah Wendell wrote Everything I Know About Love, I Learned from Romance Novels, which was published by Sourcebooks.

What’s this book about? Find out more→

This smart book is available from:

  • Amazon
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Kobo
  • IndieBound
  • All Romance

 

We Don’t Mean to Brag, but…

We’ve appeared in USA Today, The New Yorker, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Metro:New York, Salon, and in forums dedicated to the finest online wankage money can’t buy.

Particular highlight: we were mentioned on Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me. I know!!!!!

What, You Want a Timeline?

OK, here you go:

  • 2005: The hot pink palace of Bitchery was started by Candy Tan and Sarah Wendell.
  • 2007: Candy went to law school and much to everyone’s surprise, there was no Mullet Defense track.
  • 2010: Candy is out fighting legal battles against mantitty encroaching upon the environment. Sarah is now doyenne, mastermind, and general overlady (and not so much underlady) of the site, with Elyse, Carrie S, Amanda, and RedHeadedGirl.
  • 2014: The website relaunches in full mobile responsive glory and gazillions of smart romance readers were let loose to bitch via their phones.
  • 2015: The hot pink palace of Bitchery turns TEN!
❤❤❤

Meet the Bitches

Read on to learn more about Sarah, Carrie, Elyse, RedHeadedGirl, and Amanda.

Headshot of Sarah Wendell

Sarah Wendell

Hi, there!

Short Bio of Shortness:

In 2005 I co-founded Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. Since then, I’ve published two books about the romance genre, spoken to romance readers all over the world who are among the most awesome people ever, and kept on reading, reviewing and discussing romance novels, my favorite kind of book. When I’m not reading, which isn’t often, I like cooking, watching tv, exhausting my children, and going outside as much as possible. With bug spray.

You can read more about me at SB Sarah.com, which has additional links to media, upcoming appearances, and an assortment of silly and serious headshots. I’m really, really pensive in one of them. You can also find out about having me visit your group as a speaker, wherein I will bring the mayhem and merriment live to your location.

I was syndicated on BlogHer.com When it comes to reading, I like romance. Wait, you need more specific? I love contemporary romance, especially contemporary comedy romance, like Julie James, Jill Shalvis, Shannon Stacey, and Lisa Kleyas. I also love historicals, especially historicals that don’t take place in or near ballrooms. Some of my favorite historical authors include Julie Anne Long, Beverly Jenkins, Theresa Romain, Julia Quinn, Lisa Kleypas, and Kate Noble. I love stories with realistic characters, and cliched dialogue is one of my biggest pet peeves. As I have said several times, I don’t care if the duke drives a Porsche to Almack’s, so long as he and everybody else talk like real people when he gets there.

Twitter: @SmartBitches

Carrie Sessarego
Carrie Sessarego

As Smart Bitches’ resident Geek Reviewer, I review science fiction and fantasy romance, science fiction and fantasy with strong romantic elements, non-fiction, movies, and comics, with the occasional foray into contemporary and historical romance.

I have copies of Jane Eyre, The Hobbit, and The Lord of the Rings in my emergency supply cupboard and the collected works of Jennifer Crusie in the trunk of my car. Favorite romances include A Civil Campaign, by Lois McMaster Bujold, Riveted, by Meljean Brook, Unveiled, by Courtney Milan, What Happens In London, by Julia Quinn, and Bet Me, by Jennifer Crusie.

I like romances with geeky scientist heroes, which is not surprising, since I’m married to one, and I have a mad scientist daughter who loves explosions and Lego robots.

Book Pride & Prejudice & Popcorn I’m the proud author of Pride, Prejudice, and Popcorn: TV and Film Adaptations of Pride and Prejudice, Wuthering Heights, and Jane Eyre. When I’m not writing, I’m volunteering for the library, singing, and raising one kid, two cats, assorted fish, and very emotionally disturbed dog. You can find more of my reviews and other writing at my very own blog, www.geekgirlinlove.com!

Carrie’s Greatest Hits: The Host: a movie review, Saga by Brian Vaughan and Fiona Staples, Tai Chi Zero, a movie review.

Twitter: @geekgirlinlove


Elyse

I grew up in a house filled with books, and I think my mother’s love of reading really transferred over to me. I used to read her gothics by Victoria Holt and Phyllis Whitney. I found my first real romance, A Rose in Winter by Kathleen Woodiwiss, in a dusty old box in the basement. That book pretty much sealed my fate.

Also I live in WI so if I didn’t have books to me through our winters, I’d go insane…

I mostly read historical romance and romantic suspense, although I love Harlequin Presents for a quick read. I like my romances a little over-the-top, whether it be with angst, melodrama or mystery. I’m totally fine with romantic suspense that’s ultra creepy or gorey– I just triple check the locks at night. I’ve also noticed that I like romances that feature broken and wounded heroes/heroines. I love when they really have to overcome the odds to find HEA. I also enjoy fairy tale themes, especially Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast themes.

I am not a fan of paranormal (unless it’s exceptionally good) or small town, cozy romances. I’ll read a few but generally they don’t dazzle me. I’m also not crazy about the new trend of erotic dom/sub romance because it seems to be the same story over and over again, and if I even THINK the book may have been inspired by Twilight, I won’t touch it. Twilight and 50 Shades are two of my least favorite books ever.

Favorite romance authors include: Eloisa James (mad love for her), Jill Barnett, Edith Layton, Karen Marie Moning (Highlander series), Teresa Medeiros, Victoria Dahl, Maisey Yates, Sarah Morgan, Shiloh Walker, and Maya Banks. Plus the Old Skool classics: Woodiwiss, Lindsey, Deveraux, Garwood, Lowell, etc.

Favorite straight mystery authors are Tess Gerritsen, Linwood Barclay, Harlan Coben and Chelsea Cain.

An Elyse Highlight: Knitting Patterns
Twitter: @ElyseIndeed

RedHeadedGirl

Redheadedgirl is a 30-something lawyer who likes arguing and telling people what to do, along with Riesling and chocolate chip cookies (but not with walnuts. What are you, a heretic?). She prefers old-school romances, the more ridiculous the better, ideally with a steady helping of costume porn (but most historicals will do).

Or Jeremy Renner.

Or Richard Armitage. Which ever.

Twitter: @RedHeadedGirl

Amanda
Amanda

All credit to my book-loving goes to my mother.

She was the reader in the house and did her best to foster that same habit into me and my brother. It only really stuck with me.

A former Chemical Engineering major, I soon realized after a semester that I would probably end up miserable at age forty. So I switched to something completely different: Editing, Writing, & Media, and served as the resident SBTB intern for about a year and half. I am now pursuing my M.A. in Publishing & Writing in Boston.

I read anything and everything, though contemporaries and romantic suspenses are the most underrepresented on my shelf. Not because I don’t like them; it’s purely coincidental that I never really pick them up. I’m on a bit of a lull when it comes to paranormals, but I’d love to find a fresh new author without a handful of novels under his/her belt. And I will never tire of historicals. It might be a bit of an impossibility, though I’m willing to test it out. For science, of course.

Romance authors who I happen to love are: Lisa Kleypas, Judith McNaught, Kresley Cole, Patricia Briggs, Karen Marie Moning, Ilona Andrews, Julie Garwood, Courtney Milan, and Meljean Brook.

Other authors and their genres: Neil Gaiman (fantasy), Mira Grant (scifi), David Wong (horror), and Jasper Fforde (fantasy).

Twitter: @_ImAnAdult

But enough about us! How about you?

If you’d like to subscribe to our daily feed of fast-moving and very silly discussions on romance and the women who read and write it, drop your email in the box below:

And if you’d like to contact us, please do!
❤❤❤

Back to the Books

Everything I Know About Love, I Learned from Romance Novels

Everything I Know ABout Love I Learned from Romance Novels Take a dashing hero with a heart of gold and a mullet of awesome. Add a heroine with a bustle and the will to kick major butt. Then include enough contrivances to keep them fighting while getting them alone and possibly without key pieces of clothing, and what do you have? A romance novel. What else? Enough lessons about life, love, and everything in between to help you with your own happily-ever-after. Lessons like…

❤ Romance means believing you are worthy of a happy ending

❤ Learning to tell the prince from the frog

❤ Real-life romance is still alive and kicking

❤ No matter how bad it is, at least you haven’t been kidnapped by a Scottish duke (probably)

This smart book is available from:

  • Amazon
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Kobo
  • IndieBound
  • All Romance

Everything I Know About Love, I Learned from Romance Novels by Sarah Wendell
October 2011 • Sourcebooks

Beyond Heaving Bosoms: The Smart Bitches’ Guide to Romance

Beyond Heaving Bosoms A guide to the most popular and maligned fiction genre, this hilariously sarcastic but always affectionate study of romance novels is perfect for hardcore fans and dabblers alike. Smart and irreverent, the women who founded the popular blog “Smart Bitches, Trashy Books” both mock and pay homage to this highly successful genre. Sure, the authors visit the wild love scenes where the hero/heroine Must Have Sex NOW, but they also speak with famous romance authors and explore how the billion-dollar genre has influenced gender and sexual roles in our society. From insider advice on writing romance novels to discovering your inner Viking warrior, Beyond Heaving Bosoms shows that while some romance novels can be silly, maybe even tawdry, they’re also intelligent, savvy, feminist, and fabulous — just like the Smart Bitches.

This smart book is available from:

  • Amazon
  • Barnes & Noble
  • Kobo
  • IndieBound
  • All Romance

Beyond Heaving Bosoms: The Smart Bitches’ Guide to Romance by Sarah Wendell and Candy Tan
April 2009 • Touchstone/Fireside

↑ Back to Top