So I have finished my FIRST “Courting Genres” challenge as part of my bookish resolutions to try new things that I previously didn’t think I’d like. I started with the ADULT ROMANCE GENRE which scared the bujeezus out of me…I’m not going to lie!
The picks that won (my “experts” picked and then you guys votes):
First up I read the first book in the Lucky Harbor series. It was a contemporary adult romance. I was hoping you guys would vote for a contemporary because at least it wouldn’t be a HUGE shock to my system. Then I read a historical romance called The Duke And I which is part of the Bridgerton series. I plan on reviewing these so I don’t want to give too much of my thoughts away in this post but rather talk about my experience.
My Apprehensions vs. How It Went:
1. I’m no prude but I really wasn’t sure what to expect in terms of the sex in adult romance. I read romance in YA but rarely is it really descriptive. Let me tell you, not even the sexiest of sexy in YA could EVER have prepared me for adult romance. I’m not saying it was a problem…I’m just saying I’m not USED to reading it so it was a bit of a shock the first time a sex scene came up. Lucky Harbor was WAY more steamier than The Duke and I — there wasn’t so much as a kiss for the first half or so of The Duke and I. Lucky Harbor made me blush a bit because I’m SO not used to reading books that actually describe in detail about sex.
2. I was nervous that it would be corny but was pleasantly surprised.I think one of my obstacles with adult romance has been thinking it was going to be corny/cheesy. Mostly it’s because those bodice ripper covers always looked like major cheese to me. My other thing was I thought was that it was going to be super corny because of all the “quivering members” lingo you always think of when it comes to romance novels. There was some of that but not to the extent I imagined in my head. I will say that if I never heard the term “pebbled nipples” again I would be a happy girl. *looking at you Simply Irresistible for saying it A LOT*
3. I also thought romance novels were going to be very light on an actual story and just lots of sex. I was actually really happy my judgments were wrong — there was plenty of plot. While there is a LOT of sex in Simply Irresistible, there was also a good storyline about sisterhood and picking yourself back up after bad things happen. The Duke and I definitely had a storyline — more of a romance one because lots of courtship & marriage focus in that day — but I really enjoyed the setting and the storyline of it.
Did I Enjoy Both Books I Read?
Yes– in different ways!
Not giggling about the sex scenes and all the creative ways to describe ones parts and such. I don’t know…maybe I was having some “first date jitters” in my courtship and acted like a giggling schoolgirl. Perhaps I shall act my age about it next time.
Which Book Was The Fave?
That’s hard because they were different — one was contemporary and one was historical. I REALLY loved The Duke & I because I love books set in that time so I got really swept up. PLUS I loved the family so much AND it was unexpectedly funny. I’m going to have to go with that one even though I really enjoyed Simply Irresistible!
Which One Wins The Steam Award?
Without a doubt, Simply Irresistible! After reading that one, I definitely expected The Duke & I to be more steamy. That one was more swoony (there WAS sex in it) while SI was steamyyy.
Biggest Thing Learned From This Courtship?
Well, that I really loved reading romances involving adults as much as I love my YA. A lot of other elements that aren’t in YA! The adult books I typically read never had romance in them really. And also that it really isn’t all of the things I thought it was. I turned my nose up to romance novels SO HARD. *reprimands self*
Will I Continue On With The Series I Started?
Absolutely! I loved the setting of Lucky Harbor and can’t wait to learn more about the other sisters and other people in the town. I LOVE the Bridgerton family so I will
Will I Read More Romance Novels?
Yes! I don’t think it will be a new favorite genre (But then again, really, who knows?? I’ve only read 2!) but I will definitely be picking up romance novels quite a bit I think. Currently I have Extensively Yours by Shannon Stacey and Serendipity by Carly Phillips out from the library!
Advice for Other Romance Newbs?
Enjoy it! It’s supposed to be fun and have happy endings! I’d also say start in a genre you’d read anyways and there are varying levels of sexytimes so if you have a preference, ask some romance readers or investigate some reviews online! Also, don’t be ashamed of reading it! That was one of my biggest obstacles to overcome. I got over what people think about me for reading YA books but for some reason, probably because romance gets a bad rap sometimes, I felt embarrassed to be in the romance section of the library. Then I remembered, “Oh yeah, I don’t give a crap about what people think. I read what I want” and went about and enjoyed my romance reads!
So, which romance novels should I read next?? ALSO, check out which genres I still need “experts” for!