Hello! Welcome!

…and yes – ack! There are changes afoot!

Change can be difficult, but in this case, the change is promising to bring with it some extra double servings of awesomesauce. Jump or scroll, it’s all good!

Jump to:

The goal for our new design is… We want to make everything about the site better for you. We want it to be easier for you to involve yourself in the incredible SBTB community. We want our site to load quicker for you, and we want you to be able to view it on your phone, for goodness sake. And searching. Oh, yes, searching. Why?

We have a lot to talk about in the romance world, and with the new site, we have enhanced searchability and thus, find-ability (the bitchability comes standard and won’t change, of course). We want you to be able to find the things you’re looking for, while also maybe discovering some new books, discussions, and moments of mayhem and hilarity which you might have missed.

Our redesign is an evolving process which includes a lot of inspection, discovery, questions, and more questions. How can we do some parts better? How can we make the site faster and easier to navigate? Why have I run out of cookies? No, ACTUAL cookies, not web cookies. We’re never running out of those.

We want to hear from you, too. The point of all our efforts is to make the site and the community within it easier to use and easier to navigate. This page is for all of us to talk about what’s new, and why it’s new, what is particularly rocking your socks, and what you think we can do to make it even better. We invite you to get involved as much or as little as you wish.

No, it’s not a stupid question: here’s what we mean by Beta

Beta testing is the process of using real people in the real world to find bugs in a new site. Why’s it called beta, you ask? Because it follows alpha testing, the internal, pre-launch, error-slaying, bug-squishing process that happened before the new design went public. Alpha is the first letter in the Greek alphabet. Beta is the second. “Beta Testing” is just a fancy way to refer to the second testing process.

And yes, logically Gamma Testing would come next, but we just call it Ongoing Beta. The site will keep evolving. We’re going to keep testing. And sooner or later we’d run out of Greek letters. (Though, must say, I do like the sound of “Omicron Testing.”)

Beta Question of the Week:

SBTB has lots of different ways to subscribe to our content! Are they easy to find? How would you do it?

    Upload a screenshot if it helps to illustrate your response:
    (How to take a screenshot.)

    Thank you! Now please tell us a little about yourself:

    * Your name:

    * Your email:

    Your Twitter handle:

    Yes, I am totally cool with Team SB-TB contacting me about my Beta reporting (if needed), and to let me know when the next Beta question is posted.

    Your Browser Size:

    1. * What is your browser size? (Copy and paste the dimensions calculated above!)

    2. * What is your internet connection speed?

    SupersonicDecentSlowErratic

    Please help us combat spam. This helps prove that you are a real person and not a spam bot:

     

    Ongoing Open Beta

    FOR REPORTING ISSUES, BUGS, AND GENERAL WONKINESS
    Tweet @TeamSBTB or fill out the form below.

    This is the spot to report anything you want to tell us about the new site. We want the site to be easy to use and accessible to all, so if you notice a problem or something’s not quite right,  we want to know. Basically, if anything feels odd to you, we want to know about it. (And if you think something is covered in coolness, we want to know that, too.)

      Upload a screenshot if it helps to illustrate your response:
      (How to take a screenshot.)

      Thank you! Now please tell us a little about yourself:

      * Your name:

      * Your email:

      Your Twitter handle:

      Yes, I am totally cool with Team SB-TB contacting me about my Beta reporting (if needed), and to let me know when the next Beta question is posted.

      Your Browser Size:

      1. * What is your browser size? (Copy and paste the dimensions calculated above!)

      2. * What is your internet connection speed?

      SupersonicDecentSlowErratic

      Please help us combat spam. This helps prove that you are a real person and not a spam bot:

       

      Let’s Talk About It

      Finally, use the comments section below for general venting… or to tell us about the changes you like! Comments are for discussing the redesign, while the form above will send fixes to the design team as quickly as possible.

      Add Your Comment →

      1. 81
        SB Sarah says:
        0

        @Alyssa:

        So I understand, do you mean this page on your phone: http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/reviews-by-grade/ ?

      2. 82
        Alyssa says:
        0

        In reply to SB Sarah, yes I do mean that page 🙂 maybe my phone just stinks but I just cant seem to find the types of reviews im looking for without having to spend at least 35 mins scrolling through other genres that dont interest me! However it doesnt break the site, I still LOVE it

      3. 83
        Sandra says:
        0

        The Search… Couldn’t find it until I read the comments here.. It’s a kinda cool idea but not if you can’t find it

      4. 84
        Cecilia says:
        0

        I saw the new layout only today! Surprisigly, I like it (I don’t always like changes on websites.) I’d love for a Search button to be also in the header, though. Oh, maybe there is and is the detective lens.

      5. 85
        Sandra says:
        0

        Is there a reason why the reviews are not queued up with the rest of the blog entries? Used to be when you clicked the NEXT arrow at the end of the post you’d get (using the current landing page as an example from the bottom up): Retrospective > Books on Sale > HABO > Lady Windermere review > Books on Sale > HABO > Amy Poehler > Books on Sale…..

        Now clicking through gives you Retrospective > Books on Sale > HABO > Books on Sale > HABO > Amy Poehler > Books on Sale…..

        Skips right over the review.I tend to start at the bottom of the page and skim through new comments until I get to the new entries. But I had to go back to the landing page and click on the review separately.

      6. 86
        Christy says:
        0

        I am pretty adaptable and do like the new look but I REALLY miss being able to see reviews by grade…or did I totally miss how that is now done?

      7. 87
        Ros says:
        0

        So… this probably isn’t going to change, but in the spirit of giving feedback, I have worked out why I find this site messy and overwhelming and difficult to read (in both the current and previous incarnations): left hand sidebar. In fact, a double sidebar, but it’s the left hand one that really makes it hard work for me. Focussing on the middle content is hard when our eyes are naturally trained to begin reading each line on the far left.

        Possible ways to mitigate the effect: bigger gaps between the sidebars and the main content; different background colours for the sidebars; no red font screaming ‘look at me look at me’ in the sidebars.

        Or just pick a cleaner, right hand sidebar only format. That would be lovely.

      8. 88
        SB Sarah says:
        0

        You can, absolutely! In the menu above, under reviews is a sub menu of reviews by grade. Do you see it on your screen?

      9. 89
        Lindsay says:
        0

        Oh I really love the new site! I think it’s gorgeous, it fills my browser window much better, and looks fantastic on my tablet too. Already I’m finding things easier to find, especially things like the podcast (which I will admit I forget then binge on).

      10. 90
        Amy says:
        0

        Sarah, you do such an amazing job talking about different forms of diversity in romance, and why it’s so needed in the genre. I wish you could take the site re-vamp to add a little diversity to your amazing collection of horn-rimmed (lol, horny) bitch graphics. 🙂

        Otherwise, I love the site, and appreciate all your ongoing work! Web design is so much work!

      11. 91
        SB Sarah says:
        0

        Hey Amy! Thank you!

        As for Ladies of Color, I hear you – one of my weekly projects is to hunt for images with similar-style glasses. The original Ladies are commercial illustrations from the 50s, and finding images that match the style isn’t easy, but I’ve located a few. I want more ladies of color for the images at the top – so there will be. (If you see a stock image that might work, would you let me know?)

      12. 92
        lawless says:
        0

        Thank you for the redesign! I realize that there are probably things long-time users miss, but I found the prior design busy and so hard to wade through to get to the content I was interested in (and, frankly, very user-unfriendly) that I gave SBTB a miss. Now the site is actually useable for me, which is good, because its ethos is closer to mine than DA’s is. (Though I still check DA as often as I did before.)

      13. 93
        SB Sarah says:
        0

        @lawless:

        I am really glad to hear that. I know the last redesign was frustrating to navigate, but now that we’re on WordPress, it’s much easier. I’m sorry the last one didn’t work for you, but I’m so happy you’re back to enjoying the site. Thank you!

      14. 94
        Destiny says:
        0

        Have you ever read Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout? -Destiny ;D

      15. 95
        Ari says:
        0

        I am finding it hard to find the old reviews. I would look up reviews of books I was interested in reading, or go through the A+ to B reviews to find new books to read. The older stuff seems to have disappeared… which is a bummer.

      16. 96
        KP says:
        0

        Love the new redesign.

        But I really miss being able to jump to book reviews by rating. It’s the quality of the reviews and their good writing I want to read – most times I’m not even interested in the book at all.

      17. 97
        Pooja Prabhu says:
        0

        Hey! New to this site. But I really like the look of it. I’d love it if you guys could add a lil bit of gold purple and glitter to it. My suggestion. Idk about the previous look. But I gather it had hot pink in it? Even that colour would be sexy. I found out about this site through a P.C.Cast novel btw. Love it! Go SB!

      18. 98
        Cat says:
        0

        Since you’re making changes, I really wish there was a way to search for reviews by genre. (If there is, I’m missing it and it needs to be more obvious!)

        For example, if I’m craving a good cowboy story, I’d like to be able to see reviews for just that genre instead of wading through all the As or A+s to find ’em!

      19. 99
        SB Sarah says:
        0

        @KP:

        Hi! There is a section of book reviews by grade: http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/reviews-by-grade/

        It’s under “reviews” in the top menu, fourth down – “Reviews by Grade.” That’s a very popular sorting method for those hunting for a new book to read, so I definitely wanted to keep that option!

      20. 100
        Arethusa says:
        0

        Love it love it love it so far — esp the stronger search ft and the darker colour scheme. Crisp as hell!

      21. 101
        Mimi K says:
        0

        I miss the author specific section under reviews- when I am checking out an author that I’ve never read, it was a great way to get an idea of their writing. I’d been hoping it would magically re-appear but since it hasn’t, I’m making my wish.

      22. 102
        Diana says:
        0

        I just read The Arrow by Monica Mcarty as it was suggested on a sight as one of the best romance books of 2014. Oh my god, OMG! I kinda want to shout at the other romance writers and say HEYYYYYY, this is how you do it. It was so layered and the characters had backstories. I realize this is part of a series and you bet your booty I’ll be reading the rest. Be still my heart, I cried. I don’t cry in books but I friggin’ cried!

      23. 103
        wb says:
        0

        I’m so glad yall added a black woman to the site design!

      24. 104
        Caroline Keeler says:
        0

        So, first time at the site, wanted to look up a book, and couldn’t FIND the search window. Until I read all the comments about the changes in the website. So, I cant comment on the changes, but…search is for people like me who don’t have the brilliance to find it themselves…its hard to have to search for the search! That said? I miss the old pink too, even though I never saw it. This pink, this ROSE, is kinda too late ’80s for me….So excited to go searching!

      25. 105
        SB Sarah says:
        0

        @Caroline:

        I’m so sorry you were having trouble finding it – it’s in the top right corner. If you click on the lady with the black glasses and the yellow background, or on the magnifying glass, the search window should appear. My apologies that it was hard to find!

      26. 106
        Jen says:
        0

        I’m using your new website all the time now. It’s so much easier to navigate. I mainly visit the Bitchery to find new authors. I know I can’t be the only one wading through the reader recs at 2 a.m., right? For some time now I have had a secret wish that SBTB would also index their reviews by romance category. At this moment, Amazon has at least 24 subcategories under romance. Yikes! I know it’s a tall order, but sometimes I just want to read snarky reviews about paranormal romance…or maybe just regency…or maybe time traveling highlanders. I dunno. It’s a wish.

      27. 107
        SB Sarah says:
        0

        @Jen:

        I’m so glad the new site is working for you! Such a relief, I can’t tell you – I know how frustrating it was pre-renovation. I wanted to let you know that you can click on the genre names alongside the grades at the top of each review and see that sub-genre’s tagged reviews. For example, here is Historical: European — http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/genre/historical-european/

        I hope that helps!!

      28. 108
        Jen says:
        0

        @SB Sarah

        You just made my day! I can’t believe I’ve never noticed those sub-genre links. That’s exactly what I was looking for.

        I also want to write to SB – thanks for creating this blog. Reading the posts and the comments is like finding a basket of mewling kittens. You just want to hug the kittens to your chest… and then hide them before anyone realizes you’re a little too obsessed.

      29. 109
        QueenBoadicea says:
        0

        Hello! This is my first time on your website so I have no complaints or comments about its changed layout. I’ve just finished reading the book “Beyond Heaving Bosoms” and enjoyed it enormously. After doing so, I wanted to check out the website run by its lovely hostesses.

        You did write that you would have regrets or at least self-critiques about the book when you were done with it. You would think about the things you should have included, questions you should have addressed, matters that you left untouched, etc.

        Well, I do have a question for you, one perhaps you didn’t consider. Do you have anything to say or ask about straight men who adore romances? I know there are some out there, men who haunt the romance aisles looking for something…interesting to watch. Do any of them ever log on here (that you know) with questions or insights? What view does the industry take of them? What do romance-loving women think of these guys?

        Does anyone here have any thoughts about this subject?

      30. 110
        Diana Rubino says:
        +1

        I love everything about it. I loved it before, too.
        I have a question: how can I get my romance novels reviewed here?
        Thanks, Diana

      31. 111
        Amanda says:
        +1

        @Diana: Hi Diana! Feel free to use our review request form: http://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/contact/review-requests/

        Getting something reviewed is typically a matter of whether or not the book catches our eye. If you think a particular reviewer here would be a good fit for the book, definitely mention that.

      32. 112
        Diana Rubino says:
        +1

        Thanks, Amanda. My publisher just sent me all the ePub files for my books, which I didn’t have. Perfect timing! Will get them to you shortly! Diana

      33. 113
        SQ says:
        +1

        Hey!

        You know what would be awesome? If podcast chat transcripts were included as a part of the search function!

        Sometimes I’m searching for a book or author I know I read/heard about, but when I hit up the search it turns out empty – then it dawns on me, oh wait, they talked about that on the podcast! Then I get deflated thinking, I have NO IDEA which podcast because I just marathoned a whole bunch in a row.

        Plus, when searching out authors, etc, it would be great to pull out what was said about them in previous podcasts as well as the blog posts.

        I am by no means tech savvy so I have no idea if this is even a possibility, but if it is it would be AMAZING (not that the site and you guys aren’t already).

      34. 114
        Becky says:
        0

        Hi! I found this site on a web search for Regency Romance cover artists. I hope this is the right place for my query. I am especially intrigued by the signature on the Signet Regency of Emma Lange’s 1993 book “The Earl’s Return”, which I am currently reading. The bottom right corner has a mark of an “S” entwined with either a “T” or an “F”. It might also be an “I”.
        I am an avid reader of mainly Regencies and “cozy” mysteries at this time. The Regency covers have really interested me since I first began reading them in the 1970’s.
        Anyone know who the artist might be? I know that an Allan Kass did many of them from a web site search.
        Thanks in advance for any help.
        Becky

      35. 115
        Peter Granzeau says:
        0

        I’m a geriatric guy and don’t understand what’s with the pink.

      36. 116
        esha says:
        0

        Is someone going to review Sweetest Scoundrel by Elizabeth Hoyt.

      37. 117
        Al Ammons says:
        0

        New design is OK – as was old design. But this comment is not about the web site but about reading progress in general.

        As of late I have been devouring Jennifer Crusie books as fast as I can get them. And now I have just been hooked on Jessica Topper. I find these romances to be a good break from reading science fiction or non-fiction books. And they fit on one of my e-readers nicely. Easy to pick up from where I left off.

        Romance as such is a new venture or a change in reading direction. I still love science fiction. Which led me to paranormal romances. Which led me to straight romances. I have not gotten into western or historical romances much but find that contemporary romances can be pretty compelling. OK, so a lot of them have the standard plot lines and sequence you all have so clearly laid out in your books. And inconstancies with some facts and how things work. But, if the book has a good story and good characters, so what? Star Wars the Force Awakens is not a deep and philosophical movie, but a western set in outer space with likeable characters and great action and sound – all that is needed to be entertaining and make for an enjoyable time.

        Keep up your great work with reviews and what not.

      38. 118
        Shelly Pearson says:
        +1

        Ohh Mecca there you are

      39. 119
        Linda says:
        +1

        Really nice to see y’all quietly added another WOC to the rotation. Here’s to even more of them in the future?

      40. 120
        Ella says:
        0

        Hey I wanted to ask for suggestions regarding romance books, am I able to so that on this site, and if so whereabouts?

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