by Denise Little
I was cleaning off my night stand the other day to make room for some new reading material. It tends to overflow on me if I’m not careful. Among other things I found there were six electronic reading devices (two Android Nooks, a Glowlight Nook, a Kindle Fire, a Nook Color, and an original Kindle), all connected to chargers. I’ve certainly adapted to modern methods of reading. I never go anywhere without an appropriate device, fully charged and loaded.
But I also had thirty-two books. Everything from the new J.D. Robb (Echoes in Death, St. Martin’s Press) to Charlotte Bronte. The heroes ranged from the guy next door, the really rich guy down the street, an alien, a vampire, an angel, a ghost, a highlander, a dragon, and a SEAL. (The SEAL was human, but I bet I could find a seal, or at least a selkie hero if I looked beyond my nightstand.) It covered pretty much the whole of human history, and beyond. It was like a history of romance in a pile.
When I started reading for pleasure, my choice was pretty much Gothic romance: Barbara Cartland (Ugh! was my personal opinion), Harlequin romances (with a limited run of sheiks, aristocrats, and medical personnel—I loved Betty Neels), and Georgette Heyer (Absolute Yum!). I still enjoy my favorites from those days. Some of them are still writing—Dean Koontz got his start in Gothic romances under the name Leigh Nichols, for example, and Anne Stuart is still producing excellent original work. Some of my faves are gone but not forgotten. Georgette Heyer is in print and still fabulous even after all these years. Jane Austen is riding high. A few have faded from view, though they still live on my shelves and in my memory. (Anybody else remember and love Elsie Lee?)
But the new stuff is amazing. We are lucky to live in a golden age of romance. It isn’t bounded by anything. Not time—Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander rules! Not space—Lois McMaster Bujold’s Vorkosigan Saga and Sharon Lee and Catherine Asaro keep Faster-Than-Light travel full of passion. Not species—you can pretty much find any kind of hero you can imagine and some you can’t. (I’m still reeling from a dive into Manga. Tentacles, anyone?) Sensuality is no longer an issue—the genre has superstars that range from “so clean it squeaks” to downright erotica. Some of the romances tackled serious issues and some were lighter-than-air fun.
In short, my nightstand had it all, and I consider myself blessed by the talent and verve I find there. I can’t wait to see what comes next.
I’ve tried to capture some of that variety in the pages of this magazine. I hope you enjoy it.
Copyright © 2017 Arc Manor LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Copyright © 2017 Arc Manor