Tag Archives: Helen Brooks

Reading, Category Romances, and Chatter

I need to start taking notes or drafting posts before they go live. Obviously I’m pre? post? scheduling this; as in, putting the publishing time as something earlier than when I physically typed it up. Ah, the magic of the internet.

I actually had some substantial things to discuss today, and had wanted to write a review. But I’m not in a review-writing mindset. I have however, actually been reading. You have no idea how exciting this is! I’ve read at least 52 books this year! Pathetic when compared to my “post slump” reading, but… I’m excited! October especially has been kind. I raved about a Helen Brooks category romance I read online, and have been glomming her back list since.

I’m a category romance reader. I always have been, and I see nothing wrong with it. I know a number of other discriminating and well-respected (as well as well-known) romance readers who enjoy them as well. I also know that category romances are looked down upon. The whole “yes, I read romances, but at least I don’t read those romances. You know, the trashy Harlequin ones.” I’m quite fond of the Desire, Blaze, and Presents line. Helen Brooks in fact writes for the Presents line and I think she’s fast becoming one of my favorite category authors. She’s up there in the ranks of Anne McAllister, and India Grey.

What’ve I been reading? A Boss in a Million. The Billionaire’s Marriage Mission. The Parisian Playboy. The Italian Tycoon’s Bride. And I’ve started The Greek Tycoon’s Bride but set it aside to mix things up a bit. No, I don’t love the titles. In fact that’s one thing I often rail against. The covers… on that I’m torn. They’re so clinch. A bit hokey, but so branded. In a way you have to respect that, even as you groan looking through them.

You can have too much of a good thing, though, because after reading four+ books by the same author in a row… you notice things. Of course, I don’t mind many of the tropes. But, the heroes just seem so very even keel to me. So actually, after I read A Boss in a Million I actually read two novels by Anya Bast back to back. Jeweled and Jaded. Both are most excellent. (Pst, Jeweled is only $6 right now – go buy it!) Lately, I read a few Jasmine Haynes shorts. I’m… going to be less effusive about those books, sadly. I’m disappointed as well. I did like her newest full length novel more, but but I’m wondering where the “series” is going. (The first is Past Midnight – I do plan on reviewing it… but we know how that goes.)

I’m contemplating jumping back into more novels, but then again I’m just not sure. I’ve always taken to watching psychological thrillers again, obviously because I hate myself… and even some horrors. Nothing too too bad, but the whole “American Horror Story” ads got my attention. And I don’t even watch horrors! I’m a total pansy. Can’t read them either. I think because I keep thinking “the makers of Glee made this show too! What?!”

I love category romances though because they pack such a punch. They seem to get shorter and shorter (though hopefully that’s changing? At least in some of the lines?) – but you know there’s going to be a happy ending. The heroes are tycoons and otherwise incredibly, intimidatingly successful. But what I love, is that the Presents titles that I read, at least, have equally impressive women. They might not have the power jobs and shatter glass ceilings, but they’re kind, generous, resourceful, smart, practical, and bring these men to their knees. There’s something powerful about that too.

And the emotional aspect of a couple working though a myriad of issues to form a lasting bond and relationship. I like that the category romance puts that at the forefront. It’s a romance, straight up, end of story.


So what do you love about reading romances? Have you found what I’m talking about in category romances? Ever give one a try? Believe me – I’m picky about what books I read. I wouldn’t say “oh just jump in” for any of the lines. In fact I have strong opinions of where to start and what to read. I’m always happy to discuss and offer opinions. (You’re not surprised, she said dryly.) In fact I can happily recommend any of the Helen Brooks titles I mentioned.

And, if you love category romances, or would like to give one a try, remember to enter the Olivia Gates giveaway where you can win the backlist book of your choice. *NB I’m done with the contest whore-type answer. I want substance, so to enter you must answer my questions. I know, I’m such a picky bitch.