Thursday, November 14, 2013

Things I love about Category Romance.


This week I’m celebrating the re-release of my contemporary romance, Blackmailed by the Italian Billionaire, as part of Entangled Publishing’s, The Billionaire Bundle. 

I write romance across a number of sub-genres: paranormal, sci-fi, thrillers… but I often return to my first love, category contemporary romance.

I started reading category romances at an early age. I was a voracious reader, and I was always running out of things to read. My mother read Mills and Boons romances and she had hundreds of them around the house (and in fact, one of my earliest memories of my mother is her lying on the sofa reading a romance—she’s always been my role model!) So I thought, if only I can start reading them—I need never run out of books again.

Of course, I was wrong—I still ran out (unsurprising, as on a good day, I could devour four or five) but each month new ones would arrive. So started my lifelong love of romance, and while I read all sorts these days, I still have a soft spot for my first love—contemporary category romance.

So here’s Wikipedia’s definition of category romance:
“Category romances are short, usually no more than 200 pages, or about 55,000 words. The books are published in clearly delineated lines, with a certain number of books published in each line every month. In many cases, the books are numbered sequentially within the line…. 
…category romance lines each have a distinct identity, which may involve similar settings, characters, time periods, levels of sensuality, or types of conflict.”

So what do I love about category romance and why has my love affair lasted so long? Here are a few things that come to mind:

I know what I’m going to get. Within a particularly line I can be guaranteed certain things. If I’m in the mood for sweet romance, I know which line to go for. While if I’m in the mood for an alpha male and some sizzling love scenes, then there are lines for that too. Something for every mood.
Gorgeous heroes and exotic locations…
While the basic stories remain the same, category romances are in fact always evolving, they’re current, and up to date, and actually constantly changing as the readers change.
They’re short and can be read at one sitting—I love reading books in one go.
They’re pure romance. I love most genres of books, but sometimes I just want the romance! Because of the relatively short word counts of category books, there’s no room in them for complex sub-plots, so the focus always remains on the hero and heroine’s relationship—they can be very intense.
Every month there are new stories coming out.
And of course—most important—I always get a happy ever after.

So what do you love best about category romance? 

The Billionaire Bundle
The Boss and her Billionaire – Michele De Winton
Investment billionaire Dylan Johns always gets what he wants. He is used to giving orders—not taking them—until he’s forced to go on hiatus from his investment company. To bide his time and carry out an old dream, he takes a job on a cruise ship—and ends up taking orders from his gorgeous, but frigid, new boss. He is determined to loosen her up with a fun onboard romance, but their no-strings fling turns serious and Dylan is forced to confess his lies. When the affair threatens to shatter Michaela’s own career dreams, she finds herself caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.

Blackmailed by the Italian Billionaire – Nina Croft
Olivia Brent is happy with her quiet life in the country, until the loss of her home forces her to search for her estranged father. When she meets the stunningly gorgeous and enigmatic billionaire Luc Severino, her world is turned upside down. Jimmy Brent’s daughter was the last person Luc ever wanted to be with, but she’s the key to finding her father, the man Luc has wanted revenge on for over ten years. He’s willing to use any methods available, including blackmail, to persuade Olivia to help him find Jimmy and put the past behind him. And if blackmail doesn’t gain her total cooperation, then perhaps a little seduction will…

The Spanish Billionaire’s Hired Bride – Rachel Lyndhurst
Blackmailed to marry against his will, Ricardo Almanza needs a wife before he’s thirty, and time is running out. Helen Marshall can’t believe she’s considering Almanza’s outrageous proposal, but she must help clear her parents’ debts or they face financial ruin. The small print on the marriage contract changes to read three months as his wife in every way—including in the bedroom. Has she gotten in too deep, or will she need a new contract addendum, extending their marriage forever?

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Nina Croft grew up in the north of England. After training as an accountant, she spent four years working as a volunteer in Zambia which left her with a love of the sun and a dislike of 9-5 work. She then spent a number of years mixing travel (whenever possible) with work (whenever necessary) but has now settled down to a life of writing and picking almonds on a remote farm in the mountains of southern Spain.
Nina writes all types of romance often mixed with elements of the paranormal and science fiction.

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