In her review for A Slip of the Keyboard, Carrie talks about how she reads Terry Pratchett’s Hogfather every December. I know a few people on Twitter have talked about books they re-read every year, and I know there’s folks who watch movies like Love, Actually every year. I have a few yearly ritual repeats, too. By ritual repeats, I mean the things we read or watch, or re-experience, because of a specific event or … Continue reading Ritual Repeats
Time for The Most Expensive Monthly Thread where I ask what you're reading, and you tell us, and then we all buy books until both the T-Bird and the credit card are taken away! Sounds like fun, right? Currently, I'm reading a nonfiction about focus and efficiency called The One Thing by Gary Keller ( A | BN | K | ARe ). It's a very quick and easy read (and is only 133 pages … Continue reading Whatcha Reading? October Edition
I received this email from Pammie, who is looking for urban fantasy romances that are character driven with fewer leather-pants asskicking episodes. Have a look: Long time lurker, etc. Listen, there’s been a little thing nagging at me for awhile and I was wondering if I could dump it on your laps. It’s 4 in the morning, I have the flu and can’t sleep – for some reason all I can think about is Urban … Continue reading The Rec League: Character Driven Urban Fantasy
As if we don't give you enough opportunites to overload your TBR list, now we're adding one more! In Hide Your Wallet, we'll be talking about the books coming up in the next month that we're most excited about, partly to give the Bitchery a chance to see what we're dying to read and because we want to hear about all the good stuff you fine people are going to snag this month too! … Continue reading Hide Your Wallet: October’s New Releases
I received this email from Ilona, who comes from what may be the coolest family I've read about, and I totally want to listen to all of them talk books someday. I need help finding a new series or several really. Normally this wouldn't be a problem but it's not just for me I swap with my family as we all love romance novels and every new girl in the family is promptly introduced to … Continue reading The Rec League: A Family of Strong-Heroine-Loving Series Readers
Reader Amanda sent us this call for help! She's in search of some more gothic romances to feed her appetite: I've been devouring Eve Silver's Dark Gothic series ( A | BN | K | ARe ) and am loving it!! I'd like to continue exploring these types of stories, but don't know much about the genre. So I thought I'd ask the Smart Bitches community – are there any “gothic” type romances you would recommend? Thanks … Continue reading The Rec League: Gothic Romances to Darken Your Doorstep
I received an email from Lela, who is looking for a specific type of romance: In a nutshell: can you recommend, or solicit recommendations of, some awesome sci fi romances? Longer version: I was trolling the Amazon daily deals and came across a 99cent novella billing itself as “science fiction romance” (it was “Kidnapping Keela“, in case you're wondering). Hold the phone! Is that a real thing? I'm the nerdiest sci fi nerd you could … Continue reading The Rec League: Sci Fi Romances When Aliens Are Your Jam
Time to collect all the recommendations you made for various Linda Howard books, designed to tempt the reader who is curious but perhaps intimidated by the breadth of her backlist. I want to start by reprinting some of Angela James' recommendations, along with your comments, and then I'll feature the other books you recommended so heartily. Kill and Tell (Book one of CIA’s Spies): Also known as the book that Sarah and I can’t … Continue reading Classic Romances - Which One First? Linda Howard Recommendations
We have a semi-regular feature wherein we develop recommendation lists for authors with extensive backlists, so extensive they might be a bit daunting to anyone who hasn't read that author before. It's called Classic Romance- Which One First?, and we've done a few, including Elizabeth Lowell, Johanna Lindsey, Julie Garwood and Jude Deveraux. Thanks to many, many awesome suggestion on Facebook, we've got a fun edition: Linda Howard! Here's the thing: I don't actually like Linda … Continue reading Classic Romances - Which One First? Linda Howard Edition
I received an email from Cordy, who is looking for some recommendations: Hello there! Once upon a time, I read your review of Laura Kinsale's Midsummer Moon and I am finally getting around to actually buying and reading the book. And it turns out that I have a never-before suspected intense love for books about weird creative-genius ladies and the suave-but-befuddled dudes who can't help themselves around them. Okay, this book veers, sometimes, toward The Twee … Continue reading The Rec League: Brilliant Science Heroines Rule! More Please?
I received an email from Milly, who is looking for some books to read: I was just enjoying my lunch hour reading the latest O magazine – the summer reading one and I realized very few books in it were HAPPY. Now I wouldn't expect otherwise from “serious” readers but come on… their beach reads section was quite depressing. So I got to thinking: what is the bitchery's best beach reads that some of us … Continue reading The Rec League: Beaches and Beach Reading
And now, the most expensive and tempting thread, wherein I ask what you're reading, and you all share and then we all buy more books because everything sounds awesome. You ready? Credit cards in the freezer? Yeah? OK, let's do this! Currently I'm reading Zoe Archer's last Nemesis book, Wicked Temptation ( A | BN | K | ARe ), which I'm enjoying immensely, though I'm still in the first third of the story. It took me … Continue reading Whatcha Reading? June Edition
In a recent discussion, StarOpal asked if we could help her compile a list of books similar to The Scarlet Pimpernel. We can definitely do that, right? The Scarlet Pimpernel, if you're not familiar with it, is an adventure series written by Baroness Orczy about a dashing dude full of derring-do who rescues French aristocracy from the guillotine. He disguises himself and hides in plain sight in society as a clueless dingbat, while pulling off all sorts of … Continue reading The Rec League: Looking for Pimpernel-y Books
Eleventy billion years ago, when I was in college, I took a bunch of classes with an awesome professor who used the Blues as a method of framing Southern American literature. We read William Faulkner and Alice Walker and listened to Bessie Smith and just had feelings. Both the Blues and literature have been described as “equipment for living” (read Kenneth Burke’s literary theory tonight if you can’t sleep), a means of capturing what’s working … Continue reading Chronic Pain and Coping: Why Romance Novels Are My Equipment For Living
I have been thinking about the awesomeness that is the feeling you get when you had high expectations of a book, and those expectations were met. Do you know what I mean? Sometimes it's the fact that I paid more than I wanted for the book, or it's that the last book was so good, I worry like a weird person that the next one won't live up to that enjoyment. But there are times … Continue reading The Rec League: Expectations Were MET!
I received an email from Cordy, who loved a particular element of Seize the Fire and is looking for more scenes like it: I just finished Laura Kinsale's book Seize the Fire ( A | BN | K), and I really liked one aspect of it so much I'm hoping to find other books with the same element: The hero loves the heroine's body. It isn't just vague handwaving about how she's so attractive and [insert … Continue reading The Rec League: Your Body is My Wonderland
When you're a romance reader, it's both empowering and helpful to learn what plot devices, tropes, characters and familiar elements of romance constitute your particular catnip. If you know you like May/December romances, or stories about characters who struggle with speech impediments, and you know those make the mental prairie dog poke his head out and say GIMME READ NOW, it gets easier to shop or find books that will make you and your mental … Continue reading What’s Your Catnip?
Ilona wrote to me recently, looking for a specific type of book: adventure romance. I was looking at my bookcase today (I'm a student who is moving out again soon so my books are all in a messed up order) And saw Scoundrel by Zoe Archer and remembered how much fun it was to be reading an adventure romance with an adventure in different places. I really loved having obvious bad guys who always lost, … Continue reading The Rec League: Adventure Romance!