I was looking through my stacks and stacks of books, trying to come up with a feasible way to store them all. Tons of them are romance novels, of course, and I just inherited a few bags of old bodice rippers. These will, henceforth, be referred to as “the classics” here and, let’s just say that I have read more than…uh…two.
A lot of the ones in the bags I've already read or read then re-read and some of them are new to me. My e -readers are filled with books of all different genres and I love that I can store a multitude of them on one slim device but there’s just something nostalgic and special about all these older paperbacks, especially the really old ones and I feel like they deserve a place of honor because, looking through all their covers reminds me of a time I kind of tend to think of as a rite of passage.
I’ll never forget the day that my mom pulled back the curtain on her own coveted romance collection and handed me my first “big girl” book. I’m not kidding, there was a curtain. I don’t know if this was in defense of my Dad’s delicate sensibilities (lol) or just because she was crafty like that but it added to the air of mystique and I was always wont to peek behind it at the embossed paperback covers with the sometimes rugged, sometimes dashing heroes and the women with their long flowing hair flung back in the wind (there was always wind). They wore yards and yards of gown that was scrunched up to show enough cleavage and thigh to be especially intriguing. I mean, classic, right?
We were readers at our house and I had my own book shelf filled with childhood favorites that, at a certain point, gave way to all the pre-teen “Sweet Valleys” and what have yous. I don’t think we really had the YA’s, NA’s, or Not Quite An A’s back then but I do remember hitting a certain age and being overly interested in those books that Mom had always been so engrossed in. She’d be sitting there reading while we played and we’d hear her laugh out loud sometimes or see her shed a tear at others and I always felt like I just had to know what was happening in those stories.
She read historical a lot and she’d share anecdotes about something humorous that the heroine had done or even some little bit of history she’d learn from reading those books because, yes, the amount of research the authors do is extensive.
Anyway, I think a lot of what was so special was the time and the conversation but I’ll never forget that one time when I asked to read one and Mom stood there perusing the shelves for a long time for a book that was “safe” and handed me “Wishes” by Jude Devereaux. I think I read it all in a day. It was light and sweet and funny and sassy and just enough of all things entertaining that I really thought I had been given a look into the world that I had wondered about for so long and, from that day on, I was hooked on romance.
What’s funny is that, nowadays, we all still share bits and pieces about what we are reading and my Mom, my sister and I trade books back and forth enough to be our own private book lending institution.
That’s the story of how I got hooked on reading romance. What’s the first romance novel you ever read?
About the Author
Amanda V Shane is an author of paranormal and fantasy romance and is currently working on her Tides of Atlantis series about the super hot lost kings of Atlantis as well as her Enchanted Lands Romances.