rape in romance

Historical Romance Review: Passion’s Slave by Kay McMahon

I really want to like Kay McMahon’s books, mainly because I like her female characters. However, there is one thing I cannot and will not accept about books–regardless of when they are written. That is when the “hero” of the book rapes the heroine. Such is the case with Passion’s Slave by Kay McMahon. 1 star

pasion's slave

Contemporary Romance Review: The Sheik by Edith M. Hull

The Sheik by Edith M. Hull, published in 1919, is as influential to the modern romance genre as Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Perhaps, even more so.

It was a blockbuster of a success, despite its many detractors. While some modern readers may cringe at its depiction of women, sexual roles, and racial attitudes, The Sheik remains a compelling read one hundred years after its publication. 5 stars

the sheik

Historical Romance Review: Raven by Shana Carrol

Raven by Shana Carol (aka Christina Savage, aka Mr. Kerry Newcomb & Mr. Frank Schaeffer) is a riveting bodice-ripper. It’s a pirate adventure that features a kickass, resilient heroine whom I adore. It also stars a hero who isn’t worthy to lick the underside of her shoes. This is one of those books I both hate and love and wavered for a long time what rating to give it. 3.49 stars

raven

Historical Romance Review: Sweet Savage Love by Rosemary Rogers

Where to begin with this review? Sweet Savage Love by the great Rosemary Rogers is–along with The Flame and the Flower–the blockbuster historical that launched a new genre: the modern romance novel. Published in 1974, this doorstopper epic was a monumental game-changer in an era of social transformation. 4.24 stars

Sweet Savage love

Category Romance Review: Hard To Get by Carole Mortimer

Oh boy, when I read “the heroine in pursuit plot” synopsis for this Harlequin Presents, was I ever excited to read it. Heroines who are determined to get their men are my favorite kinds! Alas, when the object of said pursuit is a mean arsehole, the chase isn’t worth it. Still, Hard to Get by Carole Mortimer was a wild, emotional whirlwind. With a more charismatic hero, I could have loved this as opposed to liking it. 3.62 stars

hard to get mortimer

Category Romance Review: The Honey is Bitter by Violet Winspear

Along with Anne Mather and Anne Hampson, Violet Winspear was one of the three original authors for the Harlequin Presents line when it launched in 1973. Her bestseller, The Honey is Bitter, was originally published in 1967 by Mills & Boon. It had about 30 reprintings under Harlequin. Paul, a Greek tycoon, blackmails Domini into marriage. 4 stars

the honey is bitter

Historical Romance Review: The Silver Devil by Teresa Denys

I’ve put off posting an analysis of Teresa Denys’ first book, The Silver Devil, for a long time because I didn’t quite know how to critique it. If you’re a hard-core lover of old-school romance or bodice rippers, you might be familiar with this legendary novel. 4 1/2 stars

the silver devil teresa denys

Historical Romance Review: Texas Conquest by Caroline Bourne

This review is of Texas Conquest by Caroline Bourne. This historical romance is a Zebra Lovegram, published in 1988. Texas Conquest is a frustrating book because there are good elements, but Ms. Bourne doesn’t put them together. Hopefully, she can address these issues in future books. 2 stars

texas conquest

Historical Romance Review: Hearts of Fire by Anita Mills

Hearts of Fire is a more satisfying sequel to the first installment of Anita Mills’ medieval romance series, Lady of Fire, than its second outing, Fire and Steel was. The forbidden romance between Richard and Gilliane de Lacey is stellar. 4 stars

hearts of fire gulbronson

Historical Romance Review: Passion’s Wicked Torment by Melissa Hepburne

Pinnacle Books’ Passion’s Wicked Torment is a balls-to-wall 20th-century bodice ripper set in the gangster era during American Prohibition. From New York to Chicago, from Alaska to Europe, this book hops around the globe and features lots of mutually lusty sex scenes, rapes, and gangbangs. It stars a heroine so stupid and dumb, she could only have been written by Mr. Melissa Hepburne himself, the author of the blockbuster bestseller (I’m not kidding, it sold over a million copies!) Passion’s Proud Captive. 3 stars

passion's wicked torment

Contemporary Romance Review: A Violation by Charlotte Lamb

A Violation, a full-length novel by category author Charlotte Lamb, isn’t a straightforward romance, somewhere more between women’s fiction and romantic fiction. Like so many of her works, the major themes are the philosophy of love and what are the defined roles of being a man and a woman, especially when it comes to amorous relationships. 3 stars

A violation

Historical Romance Review: Savage Ecstasy by Janelle Taylor

This review is of Savage Ecstasy by Janelle Taylor. The year is 1776, and English expatriate Alisha Williams, 20, has journeyed west to find happiness with her only surviving relative. One day, the “men” in her settlement bring a captured Oglala Lakota Indian brave into their camp, named Gray Eagle. Gray Eagle and Alisha develop romantic feelings for each other. 3 stars

Savage Ecstasy Popp
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