A Note from Cat

Given my library background, I often speak to groups of librarians about the appeal of the romance genre. It is the largest yet often the least understood of all the genre fictions. I say that the appeal is the same as that of music by Tchaikovsky and paintings by Van Gogh. They all appeal to the emotions. And in our culture we tend not to value things with emotional appeal as much as intellectual appeal. Indeed, the accusation of being “too emotional” is seen as an insult.

The need for a happy-ever-after conclusion is more intense now more than ever, because daily we are bombarded with bad news and horrible situations. But to have hope that things will work out in the end, that happiness can be had is a powerful thing. Personally, I also love reading romances with humor because having a sense of humor has helped me through some very rough times. I’ve yet to hear anyone say they’ve had enough laughter in their life and don’t want to laugh any more.

I read my first romance novel when I was thirteen. It was a Harlequin romance and I still have it in my library. I can remember reading THE GENTLE PIRATE by Jayne Castle and WINDFLOWER by Tom and Sharon Curtis among others. My keeper shelves are filled with hundreds of wonderful romance novels that are favorites of mine. Non-readers don’t understand the need to keep a book once you’ve read it, but if it is a keeper then you have to save it and revisit it by rereading it from time to time.

The romance genre has such a wonderful diversity taking you from Regency England in one book to the Lore world of vampires and witches in another. Or you can travel to small town USA and bond with characters who become your fictional friends. Yes, I am a romance writer who writes paranormal romances with heat and humor. But I am also an avid romance reader and proud of it.