Thursday, March 8, 2012

The Books of Love

by Lynne Marshall

I confess, I used to look down my nose at Romance…before I was enlightened.
I used to read a lot of heavy literary books, because it was good for my mind, and when I’d finished and scratched my head over the non-ending, well, I felt heavy, the way everyday life often made me feel. So then I’d follow the rule of word and read what everyone else was reading, the popular books. These books might have a torrid love affair in them though it wasn’t the main focus, but that love would get the life beat out of it as the story moved on. Again, depressing.

I noticed how swept along with the story I got when I read The Valley of the Horses by Jean Auel, and The Thorn Birds by Colleen Mccullough. How I couldn’t wait to pick up those books at night and read on. My heart clutched at the slow and growing off-limits love that formed between the characters.

As I read other mass market books, I realized the part that always drew me into the story was the romance. But often, the love was unrequited, or the couple gave it a go but couldn’t pull it off, and that was the book. I found myself re-writing the ending in my head when I’d finished. In other words, I wanted the characters to work through their problems and find a way to come together instead of giving up and walking away.

Then I discovered (someone recommended) Barbara Delinsky, Tami Hoag, Elizabeth Lowell, and Nora Roberts. They introduced me to romance—books that ended upbeat, where the hero and heroine solved their issues and made it work between them. Uplifting. Hopeful. Enjoyable. This was good. From there I spring boarded to Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Suzanne Brockman and Linda Howard and I was hooked. I’d found romance in my books, or should I say, romance found me! I’ve never looked back. Yes I still read the word of mouth books, the bestselling popular books, and I definitely read outside of the genre, but I often need renewal and when I do, I go back to the well of love, hope, and happily ever after.

Thank you, Romance Genre, for finding me!

Courting His Favorite Nurse by Lynne Marshall
Harlequin Special Edition – March 2012 – in stores now!

Amazon Amazon UK B&N Book Depository

Anne Grady knew better than anyone that love was complicated. When she’d left her hometown, she thought she was leaving her past heartbreak behind for good, as well. But practically the moment she returned to care for her injured parents, she stumbled headlong into their confidant—her first love, Jack Lightfoot.

Jack had been unable to deny his feelings for Annie when he was a teenager dating her best friend, and he certainly couldn’t muffle the spark twisting between them now—even if memories of the past kept threatening to push them apart. This time Jack wasn’t going to let history repeat itself—he was going to show Annie that the two of them were meant to be much more than best friends.

Lynne Marshall writes contemporary and Medical Romance for Harlequin and The Wild Rose Press. The first book in the Grady family trilogy, Courting His Favorite Nurse, is a March 2012 Harlequin Special Edition. Also coming in March in e-book only is, An Indiscretion, a contemporary romance with strong medical elements, from The Wild Rose Press.

You can connect with Lynne Marshall on the Web:

Website Facebook RomanceWiki Author Page


Blogger Maggie Marr said...

I hate to admit this, but I too went through and anti-romance phase. I stole my mother's romance books as a kid and I adore them now but when I was an undergrad and then in grad school I wanted nothing to do with romance! I'd been seduced by all things serious and literary. How silly was I? I love romance!
Thank you Lynn for the post. Also Lynn is giving away her spectacular romance Courting His Favorite Nurse to one lucky winner! So leave a comment and win be entered to win a book!

March 9, 2012 at 12:00 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Maggie!
I suspect we're not alone on this. I hope we generate some interesting conversation today. I can't wait to give a book away! :)
Thanks for hosting me today. Now, I'm off to Amazon to buy your book, CAN'T BUY ME LOVE!

March 9, 2012 at 7:16 AM  
Anonymous Wendy S. Marcus said...

Hi Lynn!
I was not much of a reader when I was younger. When my children were little I only had time (and an attention span) for magazine articles. I came across my first Harlequin, a Superromance by Rebecca Winters, Home to Copper Mountain, at a school yard sale fundraiser, in a box of Goosebumps paperbacks I was looking through for my son. I read the back cover and was hooked. I read it at soccer/baseball/dance/baton/gymnastics practices while I waited for my children. I loved the book so much I searched out the one that came before it. Then more Superromances. And more authors. And so began my love of reading romance.

One of my major frustrations with being a published author is I don't have as much time to read as I'd like!

March 9, 2012 at 7:17 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Looks like I'm going to have to wait until March 28th to buy CAN'T BUY ME LOVE. Drat!


March 9, 2012 at 7:18 AM  
Anonymous Christine Ashworth said...

Lynne! Great story - I had no idea it took you so long to find romance (in literature, lol)! I've always been knee-deep in the books, and that's all I'll say - for now!

March 9, 2012 at 7:19 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Wendy!
I love the SuperRomance line. Making time for reading is tough, but very important. I am currently reading The Hunger Games and loving it. Wish I had a paranormal type brain, but I'm hooked on love, so am very happy to have found a place in the Special Edition and Medical Romance lines at Harlequin.

I feel very lucky and blessed.

March 9, 2012 at 7:21 AM  
Blogger Robena Grant said...

I read a lot of adventure stories when I was a kid, and I always lusted after living somewhere more exciting than my little home town. Then I read the classics that my mother loved, then moved on to the deep literary stuff that made me think. I didn't start reading romance until about ten years ago, and discovered Jennifer Crusie, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Patricia Gaffney...and oh, all of those deicious old Georgette Heyers.

March 9, 2012 at 7:40 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Christine - My mother wasn't a reader, so I didn't have "those books" laying around to discover. I used to long for books that kept my interest - then, when I was turned on to romance, I was in hog heaven!

Wrote my first book, not realizing it was a romance (more like women's fiction with strong romantic elements) That's how out of it I was!!!

March 9, 2012 at 7:54 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Robena - Isn't it crazy how we missed an entire genre with our reading. I'll be honest and say it had a lot to do with those Clinch covers. They embarassed me and I prejudged the stories because of it.

Sorry romance genre - will you forgive me?

March 9, 2012 at 7:57 AM  
Blogger Cynthia D'Alba said...

I've been a reader since I could hold a book in a chubby little hands. When did I discovered "romance"? I have no idea. Seriously. The Wolf and the Dove might have been my first "real" romance...but I remember my aunt reading the old Harlequins when I was less than 10, so it's possible I read one of the those. I simply can't remember because at my age, I've been reading romance most of my life.

March 9, 2012 at 8:46 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Cynthia!
Isn't it interesting how one generation seems to introduce the next to romance? I know my daughter enjoys romance books, but probably wouldn't have discovered them on her own if it wasn't for my influence.

Thanks for reading and commenting!

March 9, 2012 at 9:15 AM  
Anonymous Julie Rowe said...

My mom was one of THOSE mothers who read romances by the case lot. So, I grew up reading her books, sometimes by flashlight under the covers! Whenever someone asks me why I read romance my answer is: they make me happy and who couldn't use a little more hope in their lives?

I just bought your book for my kindle and can't wait to dive in!

March 9, 2012 at 9:20 AM  
Blogger Charlene Sands said...

Hi Lynne - Kathryn Woodwiss and LaVryle Spencer were my first romance authors. They got me hooked. I would read all the paperbacks I could find in the library and afterward, I began a collection of romance novels so that I always had one ready to read. Now my TBR is piling up on my Kindle, but I'm good with that. I read whenever I can sneak in a few minutes out of my day.

March 9, 2012 at 9:42 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Julie!
See - reading romance is a generational gift, as it were. good for your mom.

Thanks for giving my book a shot, Julie. I hope I don't disappoint. Don't you love Whispernet?

And congratulations on your next Carina Press book NORTH OF HEARTBREAK going to audible!

March 9, 2012 at 9:50 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Charlene - I came late to LaVyrle Spencer, and how sorry I am about that. I love! her books, especially - Morning Glory - my all time favorite!

I'm so glad you write romance, Charlene Sands! Love your Desires.

March 9, 2012 at 9:52 AM  
Blogger Roz Lee said...

Back in the day when I was a young mother with no money to spend on books, I roamed the library shelves looking for an escape. I read a lot of mysteries back then, but I found I could find the same challenge among the romance writers, mainly Jayne Ann Krentz/Amanda Quick, Fern Michaels, Nora Roberts, etc. and the stories ended on a positive note. I was hooked.
Thanks for a great post, Lynne!

March 9, 2012 at 10:12 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Roz! - thank goodness for libraries to help defray the cost of hardback books. Remember when all books were hardbacks first? I know I'm dating myself, but it's not secret I'm an old broad.

I love romantic suspense - it's a great genre.

March 9, 2012 at 11:01 AM  
Blogger Maria Powers said...

Ah Romance. I've been reading it since I was 11 and started with Barbara Cartland - yes, I know that many denigrate her now, pshaw! From there I moved into category romances that I could buy every month from my babysitting money - originally only costing me $.75 per book. I've read so many romance novels throughout my life that I have no idea the total count.

My teachers and professors used to give me grief about my "addiction", but I ignored them. My Junior year High School English teacher had to eat her condemning words about the genre when I tested with the highest vocabulary of my entire class. Take that you literary snobs. The interesting thing is that I read EVERYTHING. In fact, I read more than most of my friends who only read "literature" or the latest sad sack Oprah pick. Because I read what I want, I love reading and it hasn't changed in all these years.

March 9, 2012 at 11:23 AM  
Anonymous Janie Emaus said...

I came late to the Romance genre, too. Now I read every type of book, especially YA romance.

March 9, 2012 at 11:45 AM  
Blogger Aimee Carson said...

I've been category romance since I was eleven years old!! I read them all the way through college, medical school, and residency. They are the perfect way to enjoy a satisfying read with a HEA when you don't have a lot of time. Now that my life is a little less hectic, I love ST too. But category will always remain nearest and dearest to my heart. Without them, my education would have driven me stark raving mad!

Good luck, Lynne! Oh, and Courting His Favorite Nurse really looked good on my local Walmart shelf ;)

March 9, 2012 at 12:05 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Right on Maria Powers!

I love stories like yours, and how sweet it was to score the highest on vocabulary. Reading is the key, not necesarrily what you read - just reading!

So glad to have you in the romance genre family of readers - and hopefully one day - writers!

March 9, 2012 at 12:39 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Janie - isn't it interesting how many of us came late to romance? I suspect it had something to do with the intense women's movement of our day, don't you?

March 9, 2012 at 12:40 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Aimee Carson - meet Maria Powers - both of you started reading romance at 11. :)

Aimee, in case you ladies don't know - is a Medical Doctor. There are many highly educated readers and writers of romance. Yes, romance is good for the brain - we need the chance to escape and category romance fills that bill.

Wow - Aimee - thanks for spotting me in Walmart - I believe right next to your book? Harlequin Presents Extra - SECRET HISTORY OF A GOOD GIRL.

March 9, 2012 at 12:44 PM  
Blogger Dee J. said...

I remember stealing my mom's romance from her night stand table when I was about 16. I finished it in record time and she said,"So, you liked that?" with one eyebrow lifted. I nodded vigorously. LOL. Life is serious enough as it is, I want to read something where I know everything will end with happily ever after! Great post and congrats on CHFN!! A great book!

March 9, 2012 at 1:22 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Dee J - so I'll add you to another person turned on to romance (get the clever pun?) by her mother. Though I noticed you were five years behind Maria and Aimee. LOL.

Thank you dear CP - my "great book" wouldn't have nearly as "great" without your input!

March 9, 2012 at 1:43 PM  
Anonymous Leigh Court said...

Lynne -
I picked up my first romance novel at age 28 after one reaaaaallly bad week at work. It was "Mistress" by Amanda Quick, and it was just the pick-me-up I needed after a rough week (and it was a lot cheaper than therapy!)


March 9, 2012 at 5:12 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Leigh! I'm so glad you picked up that romance and that it led to a desire to write in the genre. You write great books!

March 9, 2012 at 5:20 PM  
OpenID sharonsings said...

I mostly read mysteries, sci-fi, and fantasy for light reading, until I discovered Georgette Heyer, at almost the same time a savvy friend pointed out to me that Jane Austen's novels were romances. She turned me onto Nora Roberts and the rest--cliche alert--is history.

March 9, 2012 at 5:38 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Sharon sings - yeah the path through Jane Austen to Nora is usually the tipping point. Glad to have you aboard, Sharon!

March 9, 2012 at 6:19 PM  
Blogger Maria from 'gaelikaa's diary' said...

In the romance genre, the romance is the focus of the book and everything else tends to pale into insignificance, but that's okay. When you fall in love, that relationship dominates your life. Romance novels deal with relationship issues and because of the fact that they usually have a positive ending, they send out a message of hope. That's a good message in today's world.

I read every genre I can, but romance is a favourite.

March 9, 2012 at 7:41 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Maria - so nice to see you here. I agree, hope is a wonderful message in any era. Also true - the relationship is key in romance, though secondary stories are always welcome, it still all comes down to love.
Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

March 9, 2012 at 8:50 PM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Maggie - I had a lovely visit here today. Thanks so much for inviting me. I have chosen a name for the book.

Maria from gaelikaa's diary - if you could please contact mee via my website: - I would like to give you either a print or e-book copy of Courting His Favorite Nurse.

Thanks so much everyone for you comments today.

March 9, 2012 at 8:52 PM  
Blogger Maggie Marr said...

What a wonderful day!! Thank you so very much for being a part of Spring Into Romance! You are a fabulous writer and I feel so very lucky to have you here today. Thank you.
Much love,

March 9, 2012 at 10:28 PM  
Blogger Maria from 'gaelikaa's diary' said...

Lynne, thank you for choosing me as the winner. I'm so pleased. I'm looking forward to receiving the book.

Thanks too to Maggie for hosting this post.

March 10, 2012 at 1:33 AM  
Blogger Desere said...

I am so sorry I am late to the party, congrats to the winner and Lynn this was a awesome post !


March 10, 2012 at 1:59 AM  
Blogger Lynne Marshall said...

Hi Desere!
Thank you so much for reading and commenting. Hope to see you at next week's blog at Driving with the Top Down where I'll be giving away another book!

March 10, 2012 at 6:32 PM  

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