A Romantic Read…..what does that really mean?…..



Step back in time about fifteen years… I would spend my lunch breaks at work lost in a book…that was until a colleague teased me about reading “dirty books”. Lunchtime reading stopped abruptly, and I started to read a newspaper instead. (Actually, the book I was reading at the time was Until I Find You by John Irving- just in case you were curious.)

Return to the present day…. I spent my lunchbreak at my desk reading my Kindle. No one knows what you’re reading with a Kindle. To be honest, half the time I’m not sure of what I am reading as you don’t see the book’s cover or title after you’ve started reading.

However, I’ll confess, the novel I was reading at lunchtime today is utter filth.

It’s someone’s “book baby” though and I’m not about to tear it to shreds as I know and understand only too well the blood, sweat and tears an indie author puts into their work. (There are a few continuity errors and spelling mistakes that I’d love to correct but that’s the indie author coming out in me.)

Like a certain “shady” series, this one got me hooked with its male lead. He’s a complex, messed up character. He’s gorgeous and well inked. He’s a “Bad Boy Rock Star” extraordinaire.

It’s got me thinking.

NO! Not about THAT! (Well, maybe a little……)

It’s got me thinking about my own “rock star” and the quality of my own writing. I’m not searching for compliments here. That’s not where this is going!

Mr Bad Boy Rock Star has had sex, rough sex at that, with just about every female character in the four books. He’s had these “ladies” just about every way you could possibly imagine!

Is this what readers expect from a rock star romance novel?

I checked online and that particular series is badged as “new adult romance.”

New Adult Romance is an emerging sub-genre of romantic fiction with protagonists in the 18-25 age bracket. It’s a genre intended to follow on naturally from Young Adult Romance  which tends to explore coming of age romantic encounters, first love and teenage fumblings. All I can say is that these guys must have been fast learners!

I’m 30% of the way through the final book in the series in question and, to be honest, they only reason I’m still reading it is that I’m nosey. I hate giving up on a book once I’ve started it, no matter how bad it is. I need to know if this jerk finally gets his girl back. I’ll not be sorry when it’s done.

Some “book boyfriends” you miss when you reach the last page.  (Caesar Blue from another indie author’s series springs immediately to mind – and he was a ghost!) Despite his hot rock star looks and body and tattoos, I won’t be sparing this guy a second thought once I’m done!

So, back to where this has all left my head about my own book babies….

I turned to Google for some clarification:

“contemporary romance” – the largest sub-genre of romance novels; books that are set in the here and now, give or take a decade or two.

“erotic romance” -no, not erotica- erotic romance- this sub-genre uses the sexual interactions   as an integral part of the relationships between the central characters without detracting from the storyline.

“rock star romance” – one of the small sub-genres that kind of speaks for itself.

So, where does that leave Mr Power?

I like my characters, male and female, to be believable. I do my best to craft tangible relationships between them. My characters have flaws and bad habits (no one is perfect) but they also have integrity (I hope!) Any romantic storyline has to go beyond “hand holding” to maintain any credibility.

I guess where my head is now at is that the Silver Lake series fits the criteria for erotic, contemporary romance along a rock music theme.

And, if its too tame for those readers in the New Adult Romance bracket then I’ll apologise now for being a romantic at heart.


(image sourced via Google – all credits to the owner)

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