Category Archives: Britain

Just Like Heaven

I don’t know about you, but I have a good feeling about 2012. Just something in the air that speaks to me of good tidings. Also, I’ve gotten some sweet-ass book recommendations that I can’t wait to grumpy-read for you! I kid, I kid, I’m sure some of them will be lovely. Just lovely.

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A Christmas Promise

It’s Christmas Eve! Happy Christmas Eve! Also, Merry Christmas Eve! More Capital Letters!!!!

Instead of putting up a quick excuse about how there’s no new post today, I figured I would share with you a very special Christmas Episode of Romance Recap. Also, this little Christmas-themed novel gave Mary Balogh the chance to make up for her dreadful Novel That We Won’t Discuss from last week. Is Mary Balogh destined to become the second name on my Romance Authors To Avoid list? Or is she actually a nice lady and just had a rough novel?

In the spirit of Christmas, let’s read her book and judge the shit out of it!

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A Precious Jewel

This book is my punishment because I read an amazing book this week (the day I started it, I went straight home from work and read all night until I finished, it was that good) (it’s called The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender and it was wonderful and when I finished I sat on the couch and tried not to weep into my hands) (SO GOOD) and now the universe is like, fuck you Cate! Stop having such a great time reading books and shit! Stop having such good taste! Ughhhhhh. I’ve really done it now. I’ve read one too many excellent novels and now I’m being punished with THIS drivel, which by the way I found at my parents’ house so thanks a lot, Mom, this all your fault!

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Love Me With Fur(r)y

So one night the other week I was kind of sad and needed to escape into something, so I poked around my very messy bookshelf until I found this little gem, the final of my four books from the sweet ladies at the church basement sale. I was about 80 pages in when Joe came over and said, “Love Me With Furry? What the hell are you reading?” That’s a subset of the romance genre I hadn’t thought about before. I know there’s fantasy romance and Christian romance and LGBT romance and BDSM romance (and so much more!), but furry romance? Does it exist? This bears (HAHA PUNS) some looking into! As a resident of Pittsburgh, which as we all know hosts the furries’ annual convention, it seems only right.

Also: this book is dramatically improved if you think about Alex and Spencer as fluffy, anthropomorphized animals. I picture Alex as a raccoon with huuuuuuuge boobs and Spencer as a skunk. Or maybe a weasel. Like, a weasel with rabies and also venereal disease. Your thoughts?

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Beloved Scoundrel

This is the third of my four rummage sale romance novels (previously and previously) and my winning (losing?) streak is continuing! I mean, of course we all expected this, because most of what was written before 1990 is just dreadful. And Beloved Scoundrel is no exception! You can tell just from the title that it’s going to be ridiculous. Scoundrel? Scoundrel?! A scoundrel is, like, a little Scotty dog in a jaunty cap. A scoundrel is a chipmunk that you shake your fist at after it steals your nut. A scoundrel is NOT a hot dude you want to bonk. Come on! I can’t even think about that word without giggling, and you know how romance heroes hate to be giggled at, so it just stands to reason that Captain James would be a total douchenugget. I caused this. I’m sorry.

(As an aside, while I was searching for a cover image – and couldn’t find a big one, which is why this post is preceded by such a teensy tiny image; also because I am too lazy to take a picture of the cover of my book – I discovered that “scoundrel” is a VERY popular word in romance novel titles. Seriously! SCOUNDRELS, the lot of them!)

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An Affair Without End

This book is sort of infuriating in a lot of ways. For one, the print is SO SMALL. Like, teensy tiny. What am I reading here, high-brow literature? Plus there are SO many little side-stories, all these secondary characters we’re supposed to care about. I’m pretty sure Candance Camp has, like, a dozen books planned for this circle of characters and she wants to make sure that all of them show up and have something to do in every single book but, frankly, I find it really annoying. I mean, yeah, whatever, you don’t just want a heroine who pines away for the hero and does nothing for an entire novel, but let’s leave the secondary characters to their own book and quit clogging up this one. Plus – and this is where I really start to zone out – almost all of the first 200 pages are them attending parties, them interacting with neighbors, them being introduced to Lady So-and-So and it is so ungoldly boring. I mean, who cares? Really? WHO CARES? Who is picking up romance novels and being like, oooh I can’t wait to hear about what this completely random made-up member of the lower elite is up to and how they feel and what kind of parties they attend! Who is doing that?! No one, that’s who. No one is doing that. It’s stupid and it wastes pages and it distracts from the real plot which is WILL THEY OR WON’T THEY DO THE SEX? (They will.) Stop world-building, Candace Camp. If you take all that crap out and double the font size you’d have a totally normal, respectable romance novel and I wouldn’t be yawn-sighing every two pages.

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Marriage Most Scandalous

This one is really exciting! It’s my VERY FIRST romance novel audiobook! See, I had this long drive to do by myself and I’m kind of a wuss about driving long distances alone because I either start to fall asleep or I get really antsy or I just get BORED and I end up stopping, like, once an hour, to the point that even the dog is like, Jesus H…again?! So usually I just make a CD or ten CDs or load up the ol’ MP3 machine with music that I can sing along to at the top of my lungs, but ugh…that’s a LONG time to be singing. And then I thought, audiobook! And then I thought, ROMANCE NOVEL AUDIOBOOK!!!!! And that’s how this all came to be.

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