I have a guilty confession to make.
It’s been two months since I read my last romance.
I have no explanation for this, except that I’ve been very busy, and perhaps I needed a break from reading. When I do read, I feel like short things, like short stories, or news articles, or better yet, magazines with lots of pictures… (The US Vogue with Michelle Obama, fyi, was deeply disappointing).
And, reading less, I haven’t been blogging or doing my regular blog checks. So I feel as though I’ve fallen off the face of the earth.
I identify myself as a reader, but I’m not reading anymore. What does that make me?
In a panic, I have picked up a couple of books. I’ve got Dreams from my Father, which is very hard to avoid at the moment. I did my best, but it’s my book group’s latest choice, so -. Then there’s 2066 (I can already tell it’s going to be one of those books, the ones that sit, untouched, on my shelf, forever weighing on my conscience). I’m also determined to finish Watchmen before I go and see the movie…
But what about romance?
There are different kinds of romance readers. I fit into the always-read-it category. Not the other kind, the fully grown adult finding a genre they had hitherto overlooked. I read my first romance was I was indecently young. It has had an indelible effect on my tastes.
These days, I find that I’m less interested in following a story from beginning to end; I’m skimming. I look for high concepts, high stakes and lots of gratuitous sex. Naturally, this doesn’t lend itself to quality reading, so I end up feeling more jaded than ever.
I feel like the hero in an old school romance: burned out, tired of empty, meaningless sex with women (books) whose names (title) he can't remember the morning after. He just wants the love of a good woman. I just want to read general fiction.
Do I need a break? Am I done with this genre?
Well, despite all my angsting, I don’t think so. I think I needed this break, but I’ve found my curiousity piquing this past week – Nalini Singh’s latest release sounds intriguing. I agree with Tumperkin’s assessment of her Psy books ("Good author. Excellent writer. Not for me"), and never ventured beyond the first. A new series might bring a fresh dynamic between the heroine and hero, which was my biggest gripe with her last one.
What about Carolyn Jewel? The premise of Scandal sounds interesting.
More promising yet, I picked up a Kleypas today and I’m tentatively looking forward to reading it. (Don't let me down, Kleypas!)
I'm not ready to quit yet, but I wonder if it's possible to reach saturation with a preferred genre. Has it happened to anyone else? Is there a remedy for this, the mother of all reading ruts?