We all have our own definitions of comfort reads. For some, it's the beloved books they pull out to read when life becomes more difficult or chaotic than normal. For others, comfort reads are the books that are pulled out to fight off a reading slump.
We last polled for comfort reads over three years ago, and AAR readers' go-to books have definitely changed. Only two titles from 2006 stayed on the list Dreaming of You, by Lisa Kleypas, moved up from second place in 2006 to first place. Loretta Chase's Lord of Scoundrels fell to a tie for fifth place.
Of the newcomers to the list, two titles, Lord Perfect by Loretta Chase in second and The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn in tenth were published in 2006, the year of the last poll. The Windflower by Laura London is the earliest published title to make the list (1984) and tied for fifth place with Outlander by Diana Gabaldon the book that begins a well loved series and Lord of Scoundrels by Loretta Chase.
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This time, seven of your favorite comfort reads are European Historicals. The only contemporary romance in the mix - Susan Elizabeth Phillips's This Heart of Mine - placed third. Diana Gabaldon's Outlander (5th place) and JD Robb's Naked in Death (9th place) were the only other non-European Historicals in the top ten.
Some perennial favorites - Devil in Winter (Lisa Kleypas), Sea Swept (Nora Roberts), Absolutely Positively (Jayne Ann Krentz), Frederica (Georgette Heyer), and Mr. Impossible (Loretta Chase) - finished within a few points of the top ten.
We invite you to consider these questions and post about these poll results:
How did you define comfort?
Do you read the book from start to finish or just your favourite parts?
Have your comfort reads changed over the years or do you find that you are always drawn back to an old favourite?
How do you use comfort reads? Are they there to jump you out of a slump? There to help you when you are having a bad time? Or are they there to remind you of how a book should make you feel?
Lee Brewer, LinnieGayl, and Cindy Smith
Post to the Romance Potpourri Forum
Compare these results to the 2006 Mini-Poll for Favorite Comfort Reads