I feel like we have come full circle, in a way. Last year, this time, we started the first lockdown. Back then I thought it would be sorted by summer. Now, when my husband asked me about going camping this summer, I told him not to plan anything, because what was the point. We have so many vouchers from Easyjet and hotels from last year. it's ridiculous.
If you read my last newsletter, you'll know I've dived into the world of kpop, which in turn has taken me to TikTok (I don't post anything, or at least I haven't yet, so I won't share my handle), and I've discovered that some find being a kpop fan embarrassing. I've also discovered some people find being an anime (Japanese animation) fan also embarrassing.
Well, to those people I say duck you! Except that there is no ducks...
I've spent a long part of my life being embarrassed. Through that, I have developed an eating disorder, which only lead to more embarrassment (I only recently discovered not everybody feels second hand embarrassment. I don't even know what that would be like.) Why being embarrassed about something you like?
Kpop music is fun, sometimes is touching, sometimes is silly. Whatever it is, right now it's helping me to cope and many other people too.
As for anime, Japanese animation has some of the best storytelling in the world. With a somewhat simple drawing style, they manage to tell incredibly intricate narrations, and transmit complex feelings. And there are as many genres as you can find in RL tv shows and movies. Anime is better than most movies done today, at least.
It's the same than with romance novels. Maybe it's because it's a genre mostly directed at women, and as such, it's not perceived as worthy. Isn't it ludicrous? As if love was a subject only for women. As if men don't want to be loved and find the perfect woman for them. Most men want a family. Most men want to share their lives with another person. So why the lack of understanding towards romance? Romance is a subplot in most movies, including action, and there is a reason for it. We all want it, men too.
Romance novels are mostly easy to read, and provide a thrill with a good chance at a HEA and the good feelings that come with that. And if there is something we need right is good feelings.
I was going to summarize my point advising to ignore the people who want to dismiss our interests or embarrass us about it, but I've change my mind. Don't ignore them, throw it back in their faces. Ask them the questions. Don't they want to meet somebody? Don't they want to be happy? If they say yes, grab the nearest romance novel to you and throw it at them. Maybe it'll get into their heads with the impact.
At the end, if you're happy and you're not hurting anybody, then nobody has a right to judge you for it.
New Novel Coming Soon!
I finally finished the first draft of the novel. I still don't even have a title for it, other than Sisters #1. This series will have three books, each of which will tell the stories of one of three sisters, hence the title. Unlike book 2 of Southwater Stories, this pathetic excuse of a title won't make it as the final choice. Good Boys Break Your Heart worked by sheer coincidence.
Still, I'm glad the draft is finished. I am hoping to publish mid April, with views at a revised version as soon as possible, which should update to Kindle versions. I will, however, present a possible title in this Month's Insight e-mail and also some potential covers. Please, look forward to that.
If you do register, you will receive a welcome e-mail, and then it might be a bit quiet, until I can present you with the first part of The Elemental Bride, for free, exclusively for the members of the paranormal and fantasy romance group, so keep an eye out for that.
As you can see, I've continued my journey through the Bridgerton novels. If there is one thread that links them all, other than one of the two main characters is, indeed, a Bridgerton, is that these novels have not aged well. You can refer to my previous newsletter and read what I had to say about this then. Still valid for this one. In this case, The 'gentleman' pretty much bullies the girl into working for his mother so she can be at his reach.
This said, if these sort of thing cause you no issue and actually, in the fictional contest, float your boat, then you won't have any problems enjoying this. I did, despite the moral issues involved. Plus it includes one of those scenes of extreme satisfaction to the reader (other than the HEA, that is), though I'll say no more, since it is at the end of the book.
This was the one I was looking forward to the most. Penelope was my favourite character in the show and I also was intrigued by her in the novels.
I was also glad to discover that, while the conflict between her and her love interest was slightly infuriating in its misogyny, it was, at least, not criminally problematic. These were just the views of the times and, more specifically, the views that pertained to the main character as a result of his own internal demons.
I know it sounds vague but if you haven't seen the show, well, being more specific would just be too much of a spoiler.
I did enjoy this one very much, and is one of the best of the series.
You have probably gathered this is my favourite book of the series.
Eloise was an interesting character in the previous novels and here, she reaches her full potential.
Eloise is an independent character and has always been independent and was happy to become a spinster. And not for lack of marriage offers. She's a Bridgerton, after all. It's just that she found everybody dull.
But when her best friend marries, her spinster's life doesn't seem as appealing anymore.
Through her hobby of writing letters, she will receive the most unusual of offers, a proposal, actually, from a man she has never met.
There are several factors making this my favourite of the lot (so far, I'm still missing two of them.)
First and foremost, Sir Phillip is the least problematic of all the male characters. Actually, he's not problematic at all. And he's a geek, of the times, mind me, but a geek nonetheless.
Eloise is an independent character who can take matters in her own hands. All of Quinn's female characters are quite independent, to an extent, but it is more pronounced in Eloise.
Finally, there are a few scenes with all of her brothers that is just too much fun to ignore as a point in its favour.
I hope you have enjoyed this month's newsletter, and my book recommendation.
If you want more romance to read, you can get the complete Southwater Stories Trilogy here.
My next newsletter will be the first Friday of April. You can also expect the Insight Paper on the 14th of March.