Archive for the ‘Romance’ Category

RITA Award Finalists

Thursday, March 23rd, 2017

The Romance Writers of America announced on Tuesday the finalists for the RITA Awards for romance fiction.

9780062100344_217efThere are 13 categories include over 80 nominees (a good opportunity for displays, see The Romance Dish for useful descriptions of all 13 classifications).

Among the finalists are popular authors such as Sabrina York, Tessa Dare, Elizabeth Hoyt, Sabrina Jeffries, J R Ward and Loretta Chase, whose Dukes Prefer Blondes (HC/Avon; HarperAudio; OverDrive Sample), part of her Dressmakers series, appears in the Historical Romance: Long category.

Attesting to the growing reach of self-published novels, 11 of the nominees come from the authors’ own imprints, including AAB Always a Bridesmaid by Lizzie Shane (Create Space; OverDrive Sample), in the Contemporary Romance: Long category.

RWA’s the Golden Heart award nominees for unpublished manuscripts were also released.

All the winners will be announced on July 27.

Louisa Clark Returns

Thursday, March 9th, 2017

9780143130154_50bd2Jojo Moyes is writing a third novel starring her beloved character Louisa Clark, reports USA Today. Lou first charmed readers in the international bestseller Me Before You as she cared for and eventually fell in love with the paralyzed and bitter Will Traynor. That book became the successful film with the same title, earning over $200 million worldwide.

In the sequel After You, Lou tries to move on after Will’s death, finds new love, and a job in New York City. In the yet-to-be-titled third novel, according to USA Today, “Lou must decide if her personal Brexit should be permanent.” It will be published sometime in spring 2018.

In a statement, Moyes said:

“I always knew that once I committed to write the sequel to Me Before You, I would also write a third book; I saw it quite clearly as a trilogy. Revisiting Lou has been a joy, as I push her into a completely new country, a brand new world, and a house full of secrets. With her usual blend of humor and emotion she has to ask herself some pretty fundamental questions — not least, which side of the Atlantic does she really belong?”

9780143130628_63a15Meanwhile Moyes is publishing a new paperback original on April 11, The Horse Dancer (PRH/Penguin; Penguin Audio/BOT).

According to the publisher, it is “A quintessential Jojo Moyes novel about a lost girl and her horse, the enduring strength of friendship, and how even the smallest choices can change everything.”

First Trailer: My Cousin Rachel

Sunday, January 29th, 2017

9781402217098Daphne du Maurier’s moody Gothic romances have been adapted by many directors. Alfred Hicthock was a particular fan, basing two of his movies on her novels Rebecca and Jamaica Inn and a third, The Birds on one of her short stories.

One that escaped him was 1951’s My Cousin Rachel (republished in 2009 by Sourcebooks Landmark; Hachette Audio; OverDrive Sample). Adapted as a film in 1954, it starred Olivia de Havilland and Richard Burton, winning him a Golden Globe award as “Most Promising Newcomer, Male.” 

The international trailer for a new adaptation, set to debut on July 14, has just been released.

Director Robert Michell (Notting Hill) tells The Telegraph that his version, starring Rachel Weisz (The Mummy) and Sam Claflin (Hunger Games), will be “detailed, dark, sexy, cinematic and full of surprises.” 

Variety summarizes the Cornwall-set story as that “of a young Englishman who plots revenge against his mysterious, beautiful cousin, believing that she murdered his guardian. But his feelings become complicated as he finds himself falling under the beguiling spell of her charms.” As Slate notes, the sex between cousins angle was toned down for 1950’s sensibilities. It seems that will not be an issue this time around.

ME BEFORE YOU, Trailer Bump

Tuesday, March 29th, 2016

9780670026609Last month the release of the teaser trailer for Me Before You caused the novel it’s based on to rise to number one on Amazon’s sales rankings. The extended trailer has just been released, causing both Me Before You and its sequel, After You, to rise again.

The new preview gets extended coverage with Entertainment Weekly counting down the 9 moments of the trailer that made them weep and US Magazine offering a lengthy summary of the 2 minute clip.

Due out June 3, the film stars Emilia Clarke (Daenerys Targaryen from Game of Thrones) and Sam Claflin (Finnick Odair from The Hunger Games) transitioning from worlds of dragons and death matches to life-affirming contemporary romance.

9780143130154_50bd2The novel’s author, JoJo Moyes, wrote the screenplay and a movie-tie in edition will be released on April 26: Me Before You: A Novel (Movie Tie-In) by Jojo Moyes (PRH/Penguin Books).

In every library we checked circulation remains very strong with most libraries having a long holds queue yet to be satisfied. Both titles are still on The New York Times Best Sellers list as well. Me Before You tops the Paperback Trade Fiction list and After You is no. 13 on the Hardcover Fiction list.

CALENDAR GIRL, TV Series

Monday, March 21st, 2016

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The people who found TV series gold in the YA Gossip Girl books have turned their attention to books aimed at an older audience, the erotic romance series Calendar Girl.

About a woman who raises money to pay her father’s medical bills by becoming a high-priced escort, the twelve-book series is named for each month of the year. Each chronicles main character Mia’s relationship with a different client.

ABC Studio’s cable division has grabbed the rights to the series. reports  Deadline.

Several of the books hit the USA Today best seller list earlier this year, bringing attention to  author Audrey Carlan, who was profiled on the Today Show, with expectations that the series would follow in the footsteps of the Fifty Shades series.

The novels have been a boon for small independent publisher, Waterhouse Press, which currently has just three authors in its stable. In a Publishers Weekly profile of the company, CEO David Grishman attributes the success to his “heavily mathematical” approach to creating best sellers but declined to explain further. It might have to do with releasing the previously self-published titles very close together as $2.99 eBooks to seed combined best seller lists. The first, January, hit USA Today‘s list at #5, at the same time that four other in the series arrived in the top 50. The books have also been released in paperback, in four collected volumes.

The series has not followed the Fifty Shades of Grey continuous growth pattern, however. The titles have slid down the list since their initial success.

Austen Adaptation Set for Release

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

On a buying spree at the Sundance Film FestivalAmazon acquired the buzzed-about Love and Friendship, based on an unfinished early novella by Jane Austen. Originally untitled, it was published in 1871, after Austen’s death, as Lady Susan. (available in several editions, including one from Penguin Classics). To make things more confusing, the movie uses the title of a different work by Austen, an early short story.

The movie is directed by Whit Stillman, described in an interview with Vanity Fair last week as “The cult director of contemporary and contemporary-ish Austen-inflected fare” (including Metropolitan and The last Days of Disco). It stars  Kate Beckinsale and Chloe Sevigny, with Xavier Samuel and Stephen Fry.

It will first be released in theaters, followed a month later by streaming via Amazon Prime. One source lists the release date as May 13.

The tie-in is written by the director:

Love & Friendship

Love & Friendship: In Which Jane Austen’s Lady Susan Vernon Is Entirely Vindicated by Whit Stillman, (Hachette/Little, Brown).

The reviews of the screening at Sundance have been warm, as exemplified by those from Vanity Fair, “Love & Friendship: A Cream Puff of a Movie” and the Guardian, “Kate Beckinsale is a devious delight.”

RITA Awards Announced

Monday, July 27th, 2015

The Romance Writers of America Association announced the 2015 RITA winners.

As described by the association’s website, the awards are given “to promote excellence in the romance genre by recognizing outstanding published romance novels and novellas” and are selected by a panel of judges.

The RITAs have multiple categories, a full list is available online. Below are the big four along with the Librarian of the Year pick.

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Contemporary (Long): Baby, It’s You by Jane Graves (Hachette/Forever; OverDrive Sample).

Historical (Long): Fool Me Twice by Meredith Duran (S&S/Pocket; Tantor Audio; OverDrive Sample).

Romantic Suspense: Concealed in Death by J.D. Robb (Penguin/ G.P. Putnam’s Sons; Brilliance Audio; OverDrive Sample).

Paranormal: Evernight by Kristen Callihan (Hachette/Forever; OverDrive Sample).

Lisa Schimmer, a senior cataloger at NoveList, won the Cathie Linz Librarian of the Year Award.

Big Bucks for HARD Novels

Thursday, April 9th, 2015

HWA series of self-published erotic novels has been acquired by Hachette’s Forever imprint, reports the AP, to the tune of $7 million.

The first four titles in Meredith Wild’s Hacker series, HardwiredHardpressedHardline and Hard Limit have just been released by Forever in e-book editions. Paperback editions will follow on May 12,  The fifth and final book, Hard Love, will be published in both e-book and paperback on Sept. 15.

“Fans of Fifty Shades of Grey may recognize the Hacker narrative: Recent Harvard graduate and Internet entrepreneur Erica Hathaway falls for controlling billionaire Blake Landon,” notes the AP.

Another self-published romance author, Jasinda Wilder, has signed with Berkley Books, as reported by USA Today, in a seven-figure deal for a new trilogy, beginning with Madame X in November (Penguin/Berkley, 9781101986882).

Trashy Books on NPR

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

Sarah Wendell, one of the founders of the web site Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, appeared on the “Small Batch” edition of NPR’s Pop Culture Happy Hour yesterday to discuss the romance genre.

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Wendell and host Linda Holmes’ conversation is wide-ranging and concludes with Wendell offering some reading recommendations: two contemporary romances, Just One Of The Guys by Kristan Higgins (Harlequin, 2010) and A Gentleman In The Street by Alisha Rai (eBook only), and two mysteries with romance, Silent In The Grave by Deanna Raybourn (Harlequin/Mira, 2007) and In The Bleak Midwinter by Julia Spencer-Fleming (Macmillan/Minotaur, 2003).

Wendell notes that readers internalize the way others respond to their choices: “Romance readers are so often subjected to shamming, we’re not actually ashamed of the books that we read but we’re told we ought to be … even by the people at the checkout counter at the bookstore. When you get that reception to the books you are buying or checking out from the library you internalize that [but] when you find other people who love the same thing you do. there is this enormous ‘squee’ of relief.”

Diana Gabaldon On OUTLANDER

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

A preview for the upcoming Outlander series for Starz, based on the books by Diana Gabaldon, features the author as well as an answer to the eternal question — what do men wear under their kilts?

The series begins on Aug. 9. UPDATE: Starz announced that the first episode will be available free online beginning on Aug. 2.

Official Web Site: Starz.com/Originals/Outlander

Tie-ins:

NewImage

Outlander (Starz Tie-in Edition)
Diana Gabaldon

RH/Bantam: July 1, 2014
9780553393705, 0553393707
Trade paperback
$18.00 USD

RH/Dell: July 1, 2014
9780553393699, 0553393693
Mass market paperback
$9.99 USD

PEOPLE Magazine Picks THE ROSIE PROJECT

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

peoplecover_205x273-2The 9/23 issue of People examines one of life’s important questions, whether Bethenny Frankel can bounce back after her divorce. Once readers have gotten past that, they’ll discover another important question in the book section — what are the “Fall’s Hot Tiles”?

Most of the eleven picks selected by the book review editors are fairly sure bets, since they’re written by authors with established track records  — Stephen King’s Doctor Sleep, Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch, Malcolm Gladwell’s David and Goliath, (download the full list with biblio. info here — People Mag. Fall 13 Book Preview)

Rosie ProjectThere is one debut title, however, The Rosie Project, (S&S; S&S Audio; Thorndike). It’s already been a hit  with librarians on GalleyChat for months and the Cuyahoga P.L. picked it as a one of their favorites back in May. Head of Coll. Dev.,  Wendy Bartlett  describes it this way,

Need a laugh? Here’s the funniest book of the year. Don is a professor who thinks dating is a colossal waste of his time. (Think Sheldon on The Big Bang Theory, and you understand the kind of guy Don is). So with the help of his friends, he devises a questionnaire to find the perfect wife, and ends up helping someone completely unexpected. You’ll love this main character. Customers who liked The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time or Temple Grandin’s books will enjoy this light-hearted look at living with Asperger’s. It also reminded me of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, last year’s big Brit import. This book was released in the U.K. first and was a big hit (read the review in The Guardian).  I think it’ll be a big hit here too; this will be a great reader’s advisory title.

Judge for yourself; the e-galley is currently available for download from Edelweiss.

The Wall Street Journal profiled the author last week. He has an unexpected background for the writer of a romantic comedy, “a 57-year-old Australian information technology specialist, has emerged as one of this year’s most promising and original debut novelists,” (his previous book is Data Modeling Essentials).

Below, the author describes the book himself:

Erotica Trumps Patterson

Thursday, August 15th, 2013

9780425267080On the new USA Today best seller list (download it here), the latest title by James Patterson, Mistress,  lands at #2, behind Maya Banks’ Burn (Penguin/Berkley; Brilliance Audio), the final book in her erotic trilogy, Breathless. This is the author’s  first time at #1 on the list.

Banks’s deal with Penguin/Berkley for the Breathless series was big news when it was announced, so big that it got covered by the Hollywood trade site, Deadline, even though no movie deal was attached.

This series makes use of less explicity erotic covers than some of Banks’s previous titles, featuring closeup photos of water, ice, and smoke.

The previous books in the series arrived in quick succession and both hit the USA Today list. Rush, published in February, arrived at No. 4 , and the second, Fever, hit No. 2 in April.

Letting Go (9780425272947), the first title in Banks’ next series, the Surrender Trilogy, (a spinoff of her earlier series, Sweet Surrender) will be published by Penguin/Berkley in February, 2014.

Sex, Lies and Cedar Cove

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

16 Lighthouse Road   204 Rosewood Lane   311 Pelican Court

Actress Andie MacDowell, whose first hit was Steven Soderbergh’s Sex, Lies and Videotape, transitions to the heartwarming, as Judge Olivia Lockhart in the upcoming Hallmark series, Debbie Macomber’s Cedar Cove, based on the  series of best sellers set in a small town in Washington state. The two-hour premiere airs July 20

Three titles were re-released as tie-ins by Harlequin/MIRA in late May; three more are coming in the next months (for a full list, see our Movie Tie-ins — Upcoming or download our spreadsheet Debbie Macomber’s Cedar Cove — Tie-ins).

Not Yet in Print, Already a Best Seller

Tuesday, May 28th, 2013

Eyes Wide OpenEyes Wide Open, an erotic romance by Raine Miller, debuts on the USA Today Best Seller list at #6, on the 6/2 NYT E-Book Only list at #2 and at #3 on the NYT Combined Print & E-Book list.

It’s the third in a series, which was originally self-published, with rights later acquired by S&S’s Atria imprint. Currently only available in e-book, the paperback edition will be released in August.

Several libraries own print copies of the first two titles in the series, but in Spanish, published by Santillana.

Self-Pubbed Book Tops NYT Best Seller List

Saturday, April 20th, 2013

The BetSelf-publishing reaches a new milestone this week. The number one title on the 4/28 NYT Combined Print & E-Book Fiction Best Seller list is a self-published novel, The Bet, by Rachel Van Dyken (read excerpts on the author’s blog).

This is the first time since the NYT began publishing separate ebook best seller lists in February of 2011 that a self-pubbed title has topped the combined list (Wait For You by J. Lynn and Hopeless by Colleen Hoover both hit #1 on the ebook only list, but didn’t break through on the combined list, where they appeared at #2. Both authors subsequently signed with traditional publishers. Fifty Shades of Grey did not appear on the NYT lists until after it was picked up by Random House).

A total of three self-published titles are on the current combined list of fifteen, two of them in the top ten, an evolving shift from the first lists, which had none.

Idaho author Van Dyken has published several historical romances with Astraea Press. She tells Forbes in an interview that Astraea was uncomfortable with The Bet because it falls into the “New Adult/Contemp” category and it “only does sweet romance,” so she decided to self-publish through Amazon’s CreateSpace.

While many of the author’s previous e-books are available via OverDrive, this one is not. It is also published in mass market paperback (ISBN: 978-1483918778), but it is not currently listed on wholesaler databases.