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Category Romance Review: A Love to Last Forever by Linda Randall Wisdom

a love to last forever

A Love to Last Forever by Linda Randall Wisdom is a fine romance between two former high school classmates, Stacy McAllister and Clarence “Mike” Harper. It’s 1986 and a 20-year class reunion brings the protagonists together. While Stacy was a popular cheerleader and prom queen who dated the captain/ quarterback of the football team, Mike had been a chubby, pimple-faced nerd who’d been picked on by students like Stacy’s boyfriend. 3 1/2 stars

Category Romance Review: Tabitha in Moonlight by Betty Neels

tabitha in the moonlight

Tabitha in Moonlight is a light romance about an efficient, capable nurse (aren’t they always in these books?) of an elderly men’s ward who falls for the new surgeon, Dr. Marius van Beek. Betty Neels wields the typical doctor-nurse romance into a Cinderella story, with Tabitha starring as the poor, down-trodden stepdaughter who gets no love from her wicked step-mother and equally wicked step-sister. Dr. van Beek plays the role of the prince, but fortunately, this Prince is far more astute than his fairy tale predecessor, not requiring a glass slipper to identify his true lady love. 4 stars

Covers of the Week #27

caressa

We’ve highlighted quite a few romance covers here at Sweet Savage Flame. A common theme for many is to include animals, particularly horses, in the background to demonstrate passion and vitality. Some equines weren’t content to be cast as mere decoration, however. Neigh, these horses demanded a starring role with the couples engaged in their usual passionate clinches. (That sentence came off a bit odd, didn’t it?)

The Male Authors of Vintage Romance

male authors

While women comprise most of the Romance genre readership and the vast majority of writers, there are many men who enjoy the genre, too. In fact, in the early years of romance, there were quite a few male authors, who had to use pseudonyms to publish their works. Men were a part of the romance revolution of the 1970s and they remain a part of the genre to this day, as writers and readers.

Updates #8

red leaf trees near the road

It’s been a full six months that Sweet Savage Flame has been up and running. We started in early Spring, and now it’s Autumn, my favorite season! We’ve grown from a tiny website to a semi-respectable niche romance blog that has amassed almost 18,000 views in that time. Thank you to our readers for being with us, for commenting, and for spreading the word about us!

Covers of the Week #26

bandit's brazen kiss

We had a lot of fun a couple of months back doing Covers of the Week #12, where we posted images of when romance covers by talented artists go hilariously bad. So we’re doing it again! For the week of Monday, October 4 to Sunday, October 10, 2021 (which happens to be my birthday week), enjoy these silly or awful-looking covers that make us smile.

Author Spotlight Charlotte Lamb

charlotte lamb pic

Sheila Holland nee Coates, known to most readers of romance as Harlequin/ Mills & Boon author Charlotte Lamb is one of my favorite writers, period. Although she wrote seemingly simple category romances, her books were much more than that. She wrote like few others in her field could: fully inhabiting her characters’ minds and giving them larger-than-life personalities.

Link: The History of the Clinch Covers

night song

At Dr. Maria DeBlassie’s blog Enchantment Learning she hosted a presentation by our Twitter pal Daily Clinch @Artof the Clinch. We recommend watching this informative video on the history of romance novel clinch covers. They touch upon the genre’s past as well as discussing pivotal cover artists, models, authors, and more.

Historical Romance Review: The Lord of Hawkfell Island by Catherine Coulter

the lord of hawkfell island

In The Lord of Hawkfell Island by Catherine Coulter Mirana is a young, unmarried woman who lives with her brother in a massive fortress. When he’s away, their home is attacked by Viking raiders seeking vengeance against him, as the Viking leader Rorik blames him for the death of his wife and child. Usually, a hero grieving over his lost love is grounds for me to dislike a historical romance, but thanks to Rurik, I had plenty of other reasons to despise this “love story.” 2 1/2 stars

The Accidental Romance? Books From Other Genres Can Be Romances, Too!

accidental romance

What defines a romance novel? Romance Writer’s of America has stated the definition of romance is essentially a love story which concludes on an optimistic note for the protagonists. Either a “Happily Ever After” or “Happy For Now” ending will suffice. But labels can be limiting or deceptive. A single work of fiction can belong to multiple categories. Literature can be mystery or romance, just as romance can be fantasy, erotica, science fiction, suspense… And just about everything else.