Sunday, August 23, 2009

Guilty Pleasures

I love romance novels. I would rather buy a romance (more like dozens) than shoes. And I have the closet crammed with paperbacks to prove it. That's why I laugh when I hear that some women hide their novels behind anything so long as the world doesn't see the bare-chested hero and the heroine with her unraveling corset. Not I, I proudly display the covers. Some are mass-marketed works of art. Eloisa James' covers are visual delights and Sourcebooks reissues of Georgette Heyer's novels are works of art from a time long ago.

Yesterday, I was in a bookstore, searching for a romance to purchase (I decided on The Bridegroom by Linda Lael Miller), an employee came over to help a female customer. She curled her lips and said, "oh this is the section with the Fabio covers." Not able to stop myself I told her that Fabio hadn't graced the covers in years. She gave me an embarrassed smile and hurried away.

I doubt the woman ever read a romance novel. And she's the one missing out on some great tales. In full disclosure, I have a 80s romance with Fabio and his long golden locks predominantly featured.

I'm never ashamed to hold my novel before all. One wouldn't hide a James Patterson novel or a Philippa Gregory book even one of those juicy biographies about some silly scandal.

So my fellow romance lovers, proudly display your novels, whether they're frothy hues of a Regency or the dark Gothic style of a paranormal.

12 comments:

  1. I guess we've all gotten that disdainful comment from a bookseller. What other retailer will disparage the product she sells? Does a Victoria Secret's saleswoman turn up her nose at the corsets? Of course not. It's a shame, in my opinion, that booksellers, of all people, can be so closeminded. Off to check out those G. Heyer covers.

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  2. So true Carly. And in this market romance deserves respect since its selling. And thanks for being my first comment. Enjoy those Georgette Heyer covers. My favorite is The Spanish Bride.

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  3. I started reading romances after a stint shelving books at the public library: I decided to spend some time reading the genres that got heavy circulation. I'm glad to say I haven't gotten much snark about my reading, and like you, I don't have to hide the covers.

    And happy first blog!

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  4. Great post, Mageela! I, too, have been guilty of hiding the cover of whatever romance I happen to be reading, whenever I'm out in public. Well, no more!

    And yes, the new GH covers are just divine! I simply must acquire a few!

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  5. I have to say that I prefer the more tame covers, but the older I get, the less I care about what anyone thinks of my reading material!

    Kelsey

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  6. Hi Mageela, Welcome to the world of blogging.

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  7. Welcome to the blog-world, Mageela! I'm so glad you opened your mouth and corrected that out-of-touch saleswoman. Your blog looks beautiful and I look forward to more posts.
    Best,
    Lis

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  8. Great first blog, Mageela! Championing our downtrodden genre! (You know, the one that sells more books and makes more money for the companies than any other genre. The genre that has kept e-publishing afloat. The one that left Harlequin one of the only publishers to make a profit during the recent economic downturn!). I, too, love my romances (of course, they are mingled in among my titles of noir crime fiction, fantasy, historical fiction, biography, psychology, classics, poetry and, well, you get the idea). Folks who think romance writers are just a bunch of drooling, starry-eyed women longing for a man to come and sweep us off our feet obviously haven't met us! We're smart, tough, funny, capable, independent, and we're mothers, daughters, sisters, wives, straight, gay, rich, poor, high school grads or post-graduate and doctoral types. We read lots of stuff, including newspapers and textbooks. But we'll stand by our romance no matter what. Because a great story with a romance speaks to our hearts. Our hearts - the ones that care for others and nurture and dream and laugh. I promote romance and share my books to "hook" new readers, but I have yet to have an opportunity to get up on my well-used soap-box and regale some poor schmo about the wonders of romance in all its permutations. You go girl!

    Welcome to the blog-o-sphere, and enjoy your very own little podium (dare I say soap-box?)!

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  9. Welcome to the blogging world! I read a lot of romantic suspense, so the covers don't tend to be as graphic as some. It's historicals that get the really bad rap, I think.

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  10. Hi Mageela,

    Your blog looks great, and I totally agree with your first entry. I'm glad you spoke up and corrected that salesperson. It's a shame that even the people who sell the products aren't more knowledgable about them, even if its not their reading preference.

    Again, congratulations on your blog. I'm looking forward to reading more.
    Happy writing,
    Carolyn

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  11. Great first post Mageela! I love how proud you are. This will be a wonderful spot for romance. Welcome to the blog world!

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  12. What a beautiful blog you've got here! And beautiful words! Cheers! Consider me a follower! *hugs*

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