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Friday, July 24, 2009

Five on Friday: Favorite Reads

My favorite reads? That's easy. Romances.

The romance genre encompasses many sub-genres, and, like most readers, I have my preferences.

1) Mail-Order Bride Stories - These are by far my all-time favorites. There's something about a man and woman who are so needy that they'll risk everything to marry a stranger. I love the emotional challenges as they get to know one another.

2) Marriage of Convenience Stories - Closely related to mail-order bride stories, these have some of the same emotional tensions, although they can be even greater if the couple knows each other beforehand, has past issues standing in their way and are forced to wed against their will. While most of the mail-order bride stories I've read are historicals, I've read some contemporary marriage of convenience stories I really enjoyed. One that stands out is Morning Comes Softly by Debbie Macomber.

3) Western-set Historicals - Perhaps because I'm a native Californian, I enjoy stories set in the western United States. Men and women of the time faced day-to-day challenges and exhibited tremendous courage and strength of character.

4) American-set Historials - Stories set in the U.S. in the 1800s are next on my list. I enjoy learning about other parts of the country and what life was like for them a century ago.

5) Sweet Traditional Contemporary Romances - I enjoy reading the Steeple Hill Love Inspired line. Which stories I choose depends entirely upon the back cover copy. Before I began writing, I'd read many of the Love Inspired books. However, now that my time is more limited, I'm forced to be more selective.

My biggest challenge is that there are far too many great books available, thanks to the awesome authors producing them, and not nearly enough hours in the day to whittle away at my To Be Read mountain.

• • • • •

What are your favorite reads, and why?

How many books do you have time to read in a month?


sherrinda said...

Hi Keli! I love a good marriage of convenience, especially if one really doesn't want to do it! That makes for the best tension EVER! (I happen to have one in my WIP.) I enjoy a snappy contemporary if there is alot of conflict. Hhmmm, I think I like conflict and tension. lol

Keli Gwyn said...

Edit away, Sherrinda, because I want you to sell so I can buy your marriage of convenience story and enjoy all that lovely conflict and tension you wove into it.

Amy De Trempe said...

I like the marriage of convenience stories too. My all time favorites are historical set in England, Scotland and France. However, since I've been reading your reviews I've begun to enjoy the American set historicals. As far as reading in a month. I am lucky to finish two books. Sad, but true. I think I am going to just have to take a break from writing and make a dent in the stack of books piling up.

Keli Gwyn said...

Amy, one of my CPs writes Regencies, so I get a treat when I edit for her. Plus, I've discovered Linore Rose Burkard's inspirational Regencies. I'll post a review of Linore's second title in August, The House in Grosvenor Square, so there's one you might really be interested in.

I try to read four books a month. At the end of the day, I reward myself for what I accomplished by burying myself in the pages of the great stories written by others.