Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Straight, With Cream, Please

Grazie, grazie Bethany True, for a great time yesterday! You can read Bethany's feature and AuthorView at Romance: B(u)y the Book!

orianna, you've won Bethany's contest, so email me your snail mail address at romance@ibsys.com, Bella.

So, Sunday morning we do the family thing and head to Starbucks after mass for some coffee and sweets and stuff. And there's this "literacy project" bookcase next to our table, a kind of take one/leave on proposition.

The thing's, like, 2/3 full of romance novels! And I'm surprised, cause I rarely meet folks in my community who, ahem, "read romance."

Could it be that romance readers are coming from other communities to read anonymously in Starbucks, while they sip ridiculously expensive cups of java with complicated combination names?

As I'm drinking my 1/2 decaf double espresso, I notice a Teresa Medeiros novel I've not read, "Nobody's Darling." So I take it, and my son gets nervous cause I'm not leaving a book. I figure I can go back with about 40 the next time I'm there (to promote literacy among the suburban folks who "don't read romance.")

Becks has "Got Milk" in this ad, and he fairly makes me wanna give up drinking my espresso straight.
I thought we should have a little tribute to Becks. God, doesn't he look great in clothes? Manages still to look a little dirty.
He reminds me of this photo of Sting I used to have tacked over my bed in college -- all pissed off, but sexy for it. Then, there's the photo MK sent me of Becks as Prince Phillip in Disney's new ads shot by the inimitable Annie Liebowitz.
"Nobody's Darling" is a late 19th century "cowboy/wild west" historical. Do you like em? What are some of your favorites? What's your favorite c/ww scenario?


Playground Monitor said...

I've never read a cowboy/wild west romance, but I saw the movie "Hidalgo" with Viggo Mortensen and loved it. Does that count? *g*

That's a great idea to swap books like that. I tried something a few years ago -- can't think of the name of it, but you leave a book in a public place with a note in it. The person can then log into a website and post that they picked it up. Anyway, you can track the book wherever it goes. I left a few romances about town but nobody ever commented on the site that they'd picked them up.

Nowadays, I just give them to friends and tell them to pass it along. That's my "literacy project."

Jennifer Y. said...

How funny...I have "Nobody's Darling" in the TBR mountain (has been there for a while) and picked it up the other day and considered reading it, but decided to read something else...you'll have to let us know what you think about it.

I love the western romances. Those were some of the first romances I remember reading. I wish they would write more of them. I think one reason that I enjoyed them so much because I loved the western tv shows and movies that I watched...I still do.

There are a variety of scenarios that western romances can have and I have probably read just about all of them. Some of my faves include friends-to-lovers (also a fave of mine in contemporaries), protector (Johanna Lindsey's "Angel" is one I enjoyed), the cowboy and the boss's daughter, widow meets drifter, Texas Rangers, schoolmarm and gunslinger or cowboy or rancher, etc., Native American, and for some reason I love mail-order bride stories (and have even read a couple of mail-order groom ones).

Sorry for rambling, but as you can tell I love the cowboy/wild west stories. Some of my favorite western authors include Jodi Thomas, Linda Lael Miller, Johanna Lindsey, Geralyn Dawson, Heidi Betts (she now writes wonderful Desires...contemporaries), Ana Leigh, and Leigh Greenwood (he has some great western series...Seven Brides for Seven Brothers is one of them..he is one of the few male romance authors I could name). The list could go on and on, but there are fewer westerns being published today.

Kati said...

I really am NOT a fan of western romances. Funnily though, I started off reading them. Remember the old Heather Grahams? The only exceptions to my "No Westerns" policy is Elizabeth Lowell's "Only" series. I adore those books. "Only Love" is my favorite.

Generally though, I don't care for American Historicals. Since I love the ton and all of the nonsense that went on in Regency and Victorian England, that's my historical setting of choice.

Weird though, since there is very little romance that I won't read. I also don't like Middle Eastern or Asian settings. Strange, huh?

Vivi Anna said...

I don't read westerns. I think if I found one where the women were the gunslingers and the men were the whores in the brothels...I might change my mind.

I'm not a fan of any type of historical. Although I'd probably enjoy a medieval type storyline...with knights and swords and damsels that fight back...

If you like your westerns HAWT..Beth Williamson who publishes with Samhain Publishing I hear has the hottest ones going...

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

OK, vivs. I wish I could ma nipulate font here, cause I'd make the biggest flippin LOL known to man.

mk: hmmmmmm...

play, I wonder if we should try that here, using this url?

Julie in Ohio said...

Mornin' Bellas!!

Boy, am I sorry I missed a fun day yesterday. :o(
Belated, "Hi, Bethany!"

I *LOVE* me some cowboys. They are rough and tough. They are the epitome of the strong silent type, plus they are hardworking which means they have all the necessary ripples we love. :P
My fav westerns have come from Linda Lael Miller, Johanna Lindsey and Tamera Alexander. Deanne Gist has some great Frontier romances, also.

I love the wild, wild west... :o)

Playground Monitor said...

Bookcrossings! I remembered the name.

You go to their website and create an account and they assign you a unique number for each book you want to release into the wild. Then whoever finds it can go to the website and enter the number and it tracks the location of the book.

As I said, never worked for me.

But it might be fun to try something here -- maybe take one book and see if we can pass it completely around the world, complete with photos of the reader and their location? Just a thought. Kinda like the Flat Stanley project.

Kati said...

I don't read westerns. I think if I found one where the women were the gunslingers and the men were the whores in the brothels...I might change my mind.

Now THAT, I'd read in a minute, Vivs. Of course, it would have to be an "alternate reality" book. LOL!

Michelle, I know! I've tried and tried to come up with a reason why I don't like them. A couple of reasons jump out at me:

1- A lot of them are "road" romances, like traveling from here to there. That's not my favorite story line.
2- I don't like the "shameful" secret (generally my mother was a whore, dancer, loose woman) for the heroine. And that seems to come up a lot too.
3- I'm adverse to the whole "blue-eyed blonde" heroine gets captured by those dastardly Indians. Although I have vague memories of loving one of those stories at the beginning of the my reading days. All I remember was that the hero was an Indian and his name was Saguaro (like the cactus).

Now, if someone could recommend to me one that they think I'd really like, I'd totally be open to trying it again. Does anyone have any recommendations for me?!

Kati said...

But it might be fun to try something here -- maybe take one book and see if we can pass it completely around the world, complete with photos of the reader and their location? Just a thought. Kinda like the Flat Stanley project.

Like the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants! Great idea, Marilyn.

Speaking of which, has anyone heard from Nairobi lately? She hasn't checked in in a long while.

ev said...

I am with Vivs on this- I really don't like westerns, or most other historicals. There are some epics out there that track through the history of the US, like How the West Was Won that I enjoy, or Louis L'Amour books, which I do enjoy. Did you know he wrote Brokeback Mountain? and another one whose name just escaped my sieve of a memory, but Tom Sellack and Sam Elliot (OMG, his voice alone turns me on!) played brothers who fought on opposite side in the Civil War. I watch it all the time and you would think I could remember it. There have also been a couple of time travels that amused me in the genre.

I just think, the west itself was so limiting in what went on, or what someone could actually do, that it limits the actual story lines and things just get boring.

Except, of course, for Zorro.

Kati said...

ev: Actually, Brokeback Mountain was written by Annie Proulx. She's a genius, and that's a cowboy movie I love, even though I sob every time.

Eve Silver said...

Love me some cowboys. Teresa Bodwell's LOVING MERCY and LOVING MIRANDA, Laura Drewry's CHARMING JO, Penelope Williamson's THE OUTSIDER and HEART OF THE WEST.

Jennifer Y. said...

Sarah McCarty has some erotic westerns if that is something that interests you!

Sarah Palmero said...

I love. LOVE, do you hear me? Nobody's Darling. I am a squealing Teresa Medeiros fan, though, so I admit my bias. Still. I loved that book. Loved it!

I've written western romance. I'd like to write more. One day, when I make it through the list of books to be written.

Michelle Buonfiglio said...

Truly, Sara, it's a great book, isn't it? Really tight, and TM has a great way of intimating really hot stuff between her h/hn w/out spelling it out.

I don't get sent a lot of westerns or medievals (have I mentioned I loves a medieval?), and I worry sometimes that I'm constantly featuring 19th cent Eng settings. But you're right, Eve, about Bodwell and Drewry.

ev, I wonder why the ww gets b oring, yet the Regency (the more contemporary treatment) is still popular?

You know, Bellas, the ww, and especially the frontier (sp) is very popular in Inspirational. I've read some really great ones lately. And Dee Gist did do a hist set in 17th cent Virginia colony which was really good, and an unusual period. There used to be lots more romances set in 17/18th cent America.

jennY, mail-order groom? sounds really cool. And there are a lot of "nursing the desperado/cowboy" westerns, too, no?

hiya, Jules!

mk, haven't heard from typ0 since she left for Canada. Hmmm... I'll try to find her.

Who was saying about cowboys being hard workers so they're ripped? That's a great point, cause that makes him very earthy and uncomplicated. Of course, then you do have to get into the "son of whore, etc." issue to muddy him up, as mk wrote.

Julie in Ohio said...

I don't care who his mama is, as long as it's not me... :P

Unknown said...

Not to shamelessly plug my own stuff but I have a cowboy book coming out in May from Virgin Black Lace, although it's a contemporary!! It's called "Where have all the cowboys gone?"
I loved Elizabeth Lowell's early Western series the "Only..." ones
and you know I love dear Becks who was born 2 miles down the road from where I grew up...one of my dad's friends taught him!

Jennifer Y. said...

jennY, mail-order groom? sounds really cool. And there are a lot of "nursing the desperado/cowboy" westerns, too, no?

Mail-Order Groom by Peggy Daniels is one I can think of reading. Also, Mail Order Husband by DiAnn Mills is another...it is an inspirational romance.

Yes, there are some with "nursing the desperado/cowboy" books too. Then you also get the ones where he has amnesia or where he is a con man or gambler. Or an outlaw hiding out and lying about his identity.

For 9 years, I was strictly a historical reader and now I read a little of everything. It was interesting to see how some storylines/themes from western romances appear in some contemporaries as well (friends-to-lovers, bodyguard, secret baby, amnesia, marriage of convenience, wounded hero needs caretaker, witness to crime, etc). It may be just me, but it seems like westerns and contemporaries have a lot more in common theme-wise than regencies/other historicals and contemporaries.

Lois said...

I only read one western -- it was a Victorian Alexander one, but I can't remember the title now. I'm bad at that, once I read a book, I tend to forget it, even ones I loved. LOL :)


Stacy~ said...

I never cared much for westerns, though I've read a few American historicals that I liked by LaVyrle Spencer. Other than that, I prefer my historicals to be strictly European. They just seem so much more exotic than westerns, where I imagine a lot of dirt, tin cans, and gingham. So not happening for me.

Okay wait. Now that I've thought about it a bit, there were some American historicals with Native Americans that I really enjoyed. Call me politically incorrect, but I always wanted to be the heroine who was captured by the sexy, bare-chested Indian brave who took her back to his teepee for some hot outdoor lovin'. Am I really the only one?

Jennifer Y. said...

LOL Stacy...no you are not.

There are also some American set historicals that aren't westerns but take place in the big cities and focus on society members in the cities.

ev said...

marykate- are you positive? I thought I had heard somewhere that it was one of his early novels.

I don't mind the new cowboy novels- where there is something to do besides take a walk and talk or have a get together. I tend to be a thoroughly modern girl. I like my convieniences. (sp)

ev said...

I had to go check the website. LOL

Shadow Riders is the movie I was talking about with Sellack and Elliot. One of my other favorites is Hondo, with John Wayne. I have that one, they need to put the other out on DVD, but it says it is out of print. pooh.

Conagher, Crossfire Trail and the Sacketts are other good ones. I can't belive how many of his books/movies i have seen/read.

amy kennedy said...

Came in way late on this discussion--not a huge western/cowboy romance fan, read LOVING MERCY and enjoyed it--just never read any others. Which is funny, because I love cowboys--or the idea of them.

Ev, Marykate is right Annie Proulx did write Brokeback Mountain. Who did the screenplay? Anyone know?

Kati said...

Who did the screenplay? Anyone know?

Larry McMurtry wrote the screenply. I'm positive about Annie Proulx because I bought the book of short stories it's included in because I wanted to know more about the internal dialogue of the characters.

Anonymous said...

LOL Stacy - nope, you're definitely not the only one :)

I discovered Jodi Thomas last year and really enjoyed a trilogy she wrote. I'm definitely going to hunt for Nobody's Darling and the others everyone has suggested.