Bookbug’s Featured Blogger Series | Episode 8
Every day is worth celebrating and even better when we set a theme. That has been my motto. So I plan this whole romantic reading month in Feburaury and life happens. Personally, this was a much anticipated month for the Bookbug’s Feaured Blogger Series. But I fell sick and things got delayed. However, I am determined to feature as many bloggers as possible in the remaining days of the month.
Today, we have our very first exclusive #audiobook blogger, Eline who is the proud owner of the blog Lovely Audiobooks
I have started listening to audiobooks recently and I really enjoy it. In fact, I do agree with Eline. Listening to audiobooks is like watching a movie but it all happens in your head and feels the same.
I really should stop quoting her and share this passionate Q and A with Eline.
How did you find your love for romance fiction? What is your first romance read?
Let me answer this the long way around.
In 2013 I read on a chronic illness blog about a self-published book. It was the story of a girl with ME/CFS. I didn’t know about self-publishing before but really wanted to read that so I installed the Kindle app on my phone. After being done with the book (Falling through the World by Rachel Clarke, definitely recommending it to anyone with ME/CFS), I started browsing the free ebooks.
I don’t remember how exactly I got from there to Romance. It wasn’t a genre I had read before unless you count some Middle Grade love stories I read when I was 12 or 13. But I do know that Neanderthal seeks Human by Penny Reid was one of the first. And it got me totally hooked. It’s smart, funny, witty, and reading it made me feel so happy. Something I was absolutely not used to from the literary novels I used to read.
Your top three romance authors? Mention why you like them in three simple words too.
Penny Reid – smart, witty, captivating
Lauren Rowe – sexy, emotional, hilarious
Debra Dunbar – “fiendishly fun fiction”
What is the ideal mix in a romance book? Mention anything you want – theme, the kind of characters, tropes etc…
I’m a mood reader and I like so many different stories, from angsty and dark to funny and light. But they all need a strong heroine who makes good and smart decisions, and an interesting hero who should also make good and smart decisions! I like smart romance.
Let’s be honest here, in most stories women are particularly portrayed as this beautiful perfect creature and that is not just for romance books. Plus size heroines or a woman who has no peculiar features are comparatively less.
However, the one thing romance novels do have in common is to make the lead guy this well-built alpha character. There are other kinds as well. But the “Charmings” are the majority. What is your take on this?
Romance novels are about our fantasies, of course. And I love a well-built alpha character.
But I wish there were less of the broody, dysfunctional types. I get the fascination, but I can really appreciate when Romance portrays how to build a healthy, functional relationship.
And I find that I really enjoy stories that are a bit different, that don’t have the ever so common man-whore and virgin.
As for the beauty aspect… Most of the time, I don’t understand it as “this person is model-perfect”, but more that this person is beautiful in the eyes of the love interest. We tend to believe that the person we desire is insanely attractive to other people as well, no?
One particular trope you do not wish to see any more in romance books?
Honestly, I don’t judge anyone for their taste in books. But I feel strongly that some things need to come with a big warning sign, hidden behind a spoiler warning. I once accidentally stumbled into a story with an incest-scare (“Oh damn, we might be siblings!” – “I’d marry you anyway!”). That wasn’t okay for me and I sincerely wish I hadn’t read that. It was the big plot twist in the story, so there was no warning whatsoever.
Your take on the steamy romantic scenes. Should it be there? Mellowed down? Or it should be taken in the good spirit whether the story needs it or not?
I can really appreciate a seriously steamy story! But it depends on the feeling a book gives me.
I’m not an Erotica reader because I don’t care for reading sex scenes for their own sake. I need all the fells! So, I greatly enjoy reading sex scenes between people who really love and desire one another. The emotional element has to be there and more than on a physical level. I also don’t care for sex scenes that are added on at the end of a love story, just so the book has one.
Either the steamy scenes fit into the romance – and then I’m very happy to read them – or they don’t have a place in it which is perfectly fine too.
Since you listen to audiobooks. Could you point out any specific thing you like just because you’re listening to a book instead of reading it?
There are two main things:
Firstly, I love that I can read so many different books because I listen to them while doing chores.
Secondly, I love narrators! A good narrator fills a story with so much life. I feel they add something, without limiting my imagination. An audiobook plays out in my mind like a movie, but everything still looks exactly the way I want to imagine it.
Top three quotes from your romance reads.
Suggest five best romance books of all time including two classics. (Classic is for me!! It is one of my New Year goals you see…)
I don’t read any classics. Sorry!!
Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid
A Demon Bound by Debra Dunbar
Painted Faces by L.H. Cosway
Hold Me by Courtney Milan
Ball Peen Hammer by Lauren Rowe
Well, I would like to have a follow up discussion on these topics. What about you? Share your thoughts in the comments section.