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I guess it's all been said?
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MarianneM



Joined: 26 Mar 2007
Posts: 374
Location: Houston, Texas

PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 4:01 pm    Post subject: Note to Gail K and Kerstin Reply with quote

I'm out here, Gail K., bumbling along at a somewhat slower rate. Had my 80th birthday this year, and believe me, as one old guy said to me "Old age ain't for sissies." I remember some newsman asking Maurice Chevalier, one of the most charming of French entertainers, what it felt like to be old, and he answered, "When compared with the alternative -- wonderful!" [Why do journalists ask dumb questions like that? It's simply annoying!]

The recent visit by Hurricane Ike to Houston was another setback. Houston is 50 miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico, but communities on or near the coast were devastated. We had no electric power for 11 days, so we sweltered in the dark. Ninety-five degrees every day. It was better toward the end when I discovered that taking two or three tepid baths a day reduces one's body temperature closer to normal levels. What we're doing now is catching up on all the chores, bill-paying and letter-writing and contracting for repairs. That takes a lot of time and it's stupendously boring to have to do it all at once, instead of a little at a time, with little rewards to oneself in between.

But we're alive, nothing really bad happened to us, unlike friends who live down near the coast and lost their homes completely. If you folks are maybe planning to spend your sunset years in a home on the waterfront, enjoying the water and the gulls and the boating and all that stuff, take my advice. Don't. One gets feeble and somewhat tottery when one gets old, and you just can't handle things you wouldn't have thought twice about a few years before. Waterfront living is a younger person's game -- believe me.

Kirsten my friend ... Glad to see you're posting again. Don't be shy. Keep on doing it. I look forward to hearing your views, even though we sometimes differ. If we can't all discuss things from differeing points of view, we'll all die of boredom.

Dick ... as for you, my friend, I look forward to your stirring of the pot every so often. You're the best argument for having two sexes I can think of.

MarianneM
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NoirFemme



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 1480
Location: America

PostPosted: Fri Oct 17, 2008 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kerstin wrote:
I'm somewhat surprised that so many people seem to share my (current) disinterest in the genre. For to say the truth, I cannot exactly pinpoint why I'm not so keen on romances at the moment. It is not as if all these books were badly written or unoriginal.

Kerstin


For me, it's because they're rather shallow. Even though the romance genre as a whole hits a particular emotional spot, when taken by individual book by individual book, the emphasis on sex, physical attractiveness, "alpha" males, the titled and the super-wealthy, etc, etc...it just seems frivolous and mind-numbing. I can enjoy a swanky romance set in the upper classes as much as the next, but for me, current romances lack the charm and pathos needed to root them in reality.
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dick



Joined: 22 Mar 2007
Posts: 2505

PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 10:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

to Kerstin et al: I admit I'm also bored by the latest big-name issues--Kleypas' and Quinn's, for example. I've begun, but haven't finished either one, sticking at about page 50 in both. I've begun other new issues of lesser authors with the same results. I've returned to mysteries and the CIA, ATF, special forces stuff. Even though they're equally improbable, they simply "move" faster, provide a bit of extravagance of action and plot that, though in some ways ridiculous, at least hold one's attention. The only romance fiction I've found entertaining enough to finish lately are the Joanna Bourne books, perhaps because they contain some of those same elements.
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Gail K.



Joined: 19 May 2007
Posts: 1292

PostPosted: Sat Oct 18, 2008 11:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MarianneM: Good to hear your voice back on these boards again! I think I would have been *much* grumpier had I had to survive what the Ike residents recently did.

I now think I have magical powers of incantation (at least to evoke long-lost posters). You all better get out of the way of my swelling head Laughing

-Gail
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Elaine S



Joined: 02 Apr 2007
Posts: 667
Location: Rural England

PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2008 7:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

NoirFemme wrote:
Kerstin wrote:
I'm somewhat surprised that so many people seem to share my (current) disinterest in the genre. For to say the truth, I cannot exactly pinpoint why I'm not so keen on romances at the moment. It is not as if all these books were badly written or unoriginal.

Kerstin


For me, it's because they're rather shallow. Even though the romance genre as a whole hits a particular emotional spot, when taken by individual book by individual book, the emphasis on sex, physical attractiveness, "alpha" males, the titled and the super-wealthy, etc, etc...it just seems frivolous and mind-numbing. I can enjoy a swanky romance set in the upper classes as much as the next, but for me, current romances lack the charm and pathos needed to root them in reality.


I can't help wondering what effect the current worldwide economic situation will have on romace authors. Maybe those that have been writing disposable, unmemorable (and often unreadable), lightweight junk will start to have a rethink and create works that are deeper, more considered and realistic. I, too, am sick of the endless line of "The Zillionaire's Mistress and her IVF Triplets" and would welcome a return to more thoughtful (and more believable) stories. Wake up editors - we are not stupid or thick - we are serious readers and want something to get our proverbial teeth into!
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Gwenhwyfar



Joined: 17 May 2007
Posts: 34
Location: SC

PostPosted: Tue Oct 21, 2008 10:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The single biggest issue for me is that so many books being billed as romances just don't have that romance or romantic feel to me anymore. And this is not really new and I know I'm not the only person who has commented on it. IMHO, a romance is about a relationship between two people. This should be front and center in the novel. Sure, there are sub characters, and in the case of series, ongoing story arc developments, but these elements should be background. All too often, we get everything BUT the romance between the two "main" characters. In the last couple months, I think I can count on one hand the number of books which really focused on the hero and heroine - Seduce Me At Sunrise is a perfect example. Sure, there are other things going on, but I really got to know and feel for Kev and Win. Another which worked great for me was Nalini Singh's Hostage to Pleasure. And Lora Leigh's Mercury's War was a great read too.

And then there are those which not only did not feel like romance, I didn't even feel any actual love between the main characters: Twilight Falls (Viehl); Too Far Gone (Melton); Lover Unbound/Enshrined (Ward); Goddess of Love (PC Cast).

The really awful part for me is that all of these authors have been auto-buys for me, but now i'm not so sure. In fact, these authors have all penned some of my DIKs. I'll probably stick with Lynn Viehl at least for her next Darkyn novel, because for the most part she give plenty of face time to her main characters. Melton - well, I'm less sure about her. Forget Me Not and Next to Die were great - the others - meh. This last one, well, i still can't figure out why either character actually cared about the other - lust after, sure - love tho? Not really.

The biggest change though was with Ward and Cast. They completely changed voice. Ward's books were just the guiltiest pleasure I had - bit on the campy side - and I could devour in one sitting! Loved Casts's take on mythology. Goddess of the Rose is a DIK for me. Couldn't wait until Goddess of Love came out. Wasn't just a wallbanger for me - I returned it to the bookstore (something I never do). When Warrior Rising came out earlier this year - actually read first couple chapters in bookstore, hoping for a return to her previous voice. It had been my desperate hope that Goddess of Love was a book she had written a very very very long time ago and never had published before. Sadly for me, there is a new voice and i'm just not buying it.

The more I think about it, the more there are authors I just don't or won't buy any more. Brockmann, Putney, Cast, Garwood. I need to stop because I'm depressing myself even further.

And then these are those authors that nearly became auto-ignore for me - Quinn, Feehan, Kenyon...

I just want some love back in my romance. Is that too much to ask for?
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