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Big Kids’ Table: My Romance Novel “Guidelines”

Hiya! Welcome to the first Big Kids’ Table post of 2014. If you are new here, this is where I recommend some titles outside of the young adult genre. As much as I love YA, sometimes I just need to branch out and hope you’ll decide to as well! As the date of this post […]

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February 15, 2014 - 9:39 pm

Hannah @ So Obsessed With - I read this back when you posted it, but I just realized I never got around to commenting on it. I love the direction you’ve taken with Big Kids Table – the personal background / discussion post format really works so well! I love getting to hear your history with romance, and I look forward to seeing what you write about in the future. I’ve loved discussion this feature with you – and reading it since you started it in the first place – so I definitely want you to continue to share the love for adult reads. XO

February 6, 2014 - 7:08 pm

Ellice - I love love LOVE this! Sorry it’s taken me so long to comment, but I read it as soon as you published it and did a little happy dance because, up until now, Nora Roberts was about all I knew about the romance genre. YAY for some new titles to add to my TBR. I love that you referred to romance novels as “palette cleansers.” Sometimes you just NEED something like this, especially after finishing a HEAVY book. We actually have some Susan Mallery books at the library. I saw them the other night when I was shelving books, so I think I’ll start there!

February 1, 2014 - 5:47 pm

Alexa S. - You already know that I LOVE a good historical romance! They can make me laugh, cry and feel ALL the feels. I’m starting to discover contemporary romances that have the same effect on me, which is truly a wonderful thing. Your guidelines are pretty spot on, I’d say! Happy romance reading 🙂

February 1, 2014 - 3:48 pm

Maggie @ Just a Couple More Pages - Yay Ellice! (She was my Secret Santa!) I really found my love of historical romances in 2013, I was so judgy of them in the past, but now I’m always on the lookout for good ones (although I’m really picky). Contemporary romances I’m still somewhat skeptical of. I seem to be drawn to more character-driven ones (like Kristan Higgins) than romance-story-driven ones. I keep meaning to check out Bella Andre because I always see you loving her. Also, that Close Enough to Touch cover image is a weird angle, haha.

February 1, 2014 - 11:02 am

Leah - Don’t mind me while I sing Alexa’s praises for a moment. She emailed me a fantastic list of historical romance recs and I’ve been starry-eyed ever since! For a newbie (slightly ashamed of that!) historical romance can be SO overwhelming, so it was awesome of her to get me some starting points. MUCH LOVE TO YOU, A!

It was only in the past few years that I caved and began reading contemporary romance. One Kristan Higgins novel and I immediately saw why she’s such a powerhouse. I have yet to read anything by Dahl, but cowboys is all I need to know. SOLD. I’m also curious about Linda Lael Miller: the next time I need a cowboy fix I’m heading straight for her!

The Big Kids’ Table: HACKED by Gone Pecan

We have an emergency situation on our hands! I innocently clicked into this post like I do every single month and SOMEONE WROTE IT FOR ME ALREADY. What is going on here?! Honestly, DAPHNE wasn’t really too careful about disguising herself. She even included a description of herself. AND A PICTURE. So if you see […]

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July 21, 2013 - 9:37 pm

Alexa Y. - Where We Belong is probably the only Giffin book that I haven’t read yet! It does sound quite intriguing though, as I’m always interested in exploring parent-child relationships. Theirs does sound complicated, but that just makes it seem more real and interesting to me!

July 15, 2013 - 12:55 pm

Asheley Tart (@BookwormAsheley) - So funny, just yesterday (Sunday) someone was recommending Emily Giffin to me. I’ve never read any of her books and since I’ve started reading the adult contemps lately, this friend of mine thought I’d like them. This is twice in two days that I’ve seen her recommended. Also I have Something Borrowed AND Something Blue on my shelves but have NEVER actually removed them from the shelves since I put them there. FOR SHAME. I’m ready for the next Blue Heron book too – I thought The Best Man was really cute. And I’ve heard the Macy Beckett books are really great and Southern so they’re ones that I’ve already got my eye on! This is a great, great Big Kids’ Table. I love it!

July 12, 2013 - 12:45 pm

Sharon @ The Book Barbies - How have I never heard of the Sultry Springs series before? It sounds like it’s right up my alley. ♥

I’m not sure how I feel about the plot of Love Overdue, but I’ll probably wind up reading it! Small towns and librarians? Yes, please!

And hooray for the Kristan Higgins love. ♥ I can’t wait to be back in Blue Heron!

July 12, 2013 - 12:31 pm

Lucy - Nice feature, ladies! You may have convinced me to give Emily Giffin’s books a try. And I agree that Love Overdue does look cute.

July 12, 2013 - 8:19 am

Carrie - I just finished Sultry with a Twist the other day. Definitely a fun book. Intrigued enough to read more. Thanks for the recs!

July 12, 2013 - 8:15 am

Amy @ bookgoonie - I love reading off the Big Kid’s, AKA Adult, table too. I guiltily enjoy reading kissy-swoony scenes.

July 12, 2013 - 8:09 am

Christina @ Allodoxophobia - AHH! I’m dying to read Love Overdue as well, it looks adorable!

Estelle: Better than Chocolate by Sheila Roberts

Better than Chocolate by Sheila Roberts Publication Date: September 25, 2012 Publisher: Harlequin Pages: 400 Keywords: sisters, small business, small towns, romance Target audience: Adult Format read: ARC from Little Bird Publicity (Thanks!) Summary: With little time to act, Samantha and her family are forced to come up with a solution when they find out […]

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August 6, 2013 - 2:05 pm

Review: Better Than Chocolate by Sheila Roberts | Gone with the Words - […] Estelle @ Rather Be Reading – “Better than Chocolate will make you crave the delicious morsels featured in the book, but also leave you wanting more.” […]

February 14, 2013 - 1:44 am

Review: Better Than Chocolate by Sheila Roberts | Gone with the Words - […] Estelle @ Rather Be Reading – “Better than Chocolate will make you crave the delicious morsels featured in the book, but also leave you wanting more.” […]

October 28, 2012 - 8:47 pm

Estelle: Shelve It from Rather Be Reading Blog (10/28/2012) - […] Courtney Cole + Dear Teen Me: A Letter From Estelle + Dear Teen Me: A Letter From Magan + Review: Better than Chocolate by Sheila Roberts + Helping Books of Wonder in NYC  + Review: All You Never Wanted by Adele […]

October 27, 2012 - 3:57 pm

elena - if i want chocolate just reading your review, i can’t imagine actually reading the book! although it’s not the perfect book by any means, it does sound pretty cute. a delicious review, e!

October 27, 2012 - 12:14 am

Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books - This book sounds incredibly cute! I adore the fact that it’s about chocolate, which is one of my favorite things in the whole entire universe. And I can always get down with a story of an underdog business struggling to survive and a small town coming together to make it happen!

October 26, 2012 - 6:23 am

Lori - I adore books set cute little towns. I think it’s my love of Stars Hollow coming through. This sounds great. I’m sad to hear there’s not more romance. Like Melissa, I’m sold from the cover alone.

October 24, 2012 - 3:12 pm

Estelle - Amber, thanks for commenting today. I hope you do look into the book. Let me know what you think when/if you do!

October 24, 2012 - 3:11 pm

Estelle - Tina, thanks for stopping in! It IS a fun premise! There’s even a few recipes included. Which is a lovely touch!

October 24, 2012 - 3:10 pm

Estelle - Jen, it’s so good to switch up genres. I think you can appreciate your reading so much more! Let me know what you think of this one. 🙂

October 24, 2012 - 3:10 pm

Estelle - Melissa, you are right! The cover is ridiculously cute. There’s another one on GR that is like total opposite but cute too. haha

October 24, 2012 - 3:09 pm

Estelle - Warning!! You will get hungry. VERYYY hungry.

October 24, 2012 - 2:08 pm

Jess @ Gone with the Words - I’m so glad you enjoyed this one as much as you did because I’ll be reading it soon and now I know I’ll mostly likely love it too. 😀 Thanks, Estelle!!

October 24, 2012 - 12:39 pm

Melissa - I hate to admit that I was already sold based upon the cover..but now I really want to pick this one up! Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

October 24, 2012 - 10:58 am

Jen - While I’m not so much a fan of the “perfect, fairytale endings,” I do totally love the way you describe this setting. Plus, chocolate? Yes, please. This book sounds adorable. And while I do read primarily YA, there are some days when a good adult book is exaaaaaactly what’s needed.

October 24, 2012 - 10:04 am

Amber - Sounds quite interesting! Might have to look into it!

October 24, 2012 - 9:47 am

Tina - This sounds like a fun book for the fall, I love fast little reads about food, cooking and romance…:) Cute review!

Estelle: Spring Fever by Mary Kay Andrews

Spring Fever by Mary Kay Andrews (Tweet!) Publication Date: June 1, 2012 Publisher: St. Martin’s Press Pages: 402 Target audience: Adult Keywords: romance, small town, family businesses, divorce, family secrets Format read: ARC from Netgalley! Thanks! Summary: Annajane is totally okay with her ex-husband, Mason, remarrying. In fact, she’s engaged and about to move out of […]

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August 6, 2012 - 10:19 am

Tara - You have inspired me to start reading adult fiction again 🙂 I need to spice up my reading list and you always review such great books that I can’t help but not add them to my TBR list.

August 5, 2012 - 8:18 pm

Louisa - This looks awesome! There really is something special about small town settings.

August 4, 2012 - 11:27 pm

Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books - One of the things I love about blogging is getting introduced to titles i might never have found on my own. This sounds really cute!

August 3, 2012 - 11:43 am

Mary @ My Sisters Bookshelf - This one sounds like too much of a squirmed for me (sometimes I thrive on the drama, sometimes it just stresses me out!) but I’m pretty sure my sister would love it so I’ll pass along a rec! She kinda lives for stories set in small towns – perhaps bc we are confirmed city girls?!

Side note: thanks for checking out our Robin Benway feature! I’m glad you liked it. I started a fan but now I’m a full on fangirl of hers! For our playlist today she sent me the HTML code and I just plugged it in – my grandmother (a frequent reader, obvs) wanted to know when I’d gotten so good at computers!

Blogging is so fun sometimes 🙂

Estelle: Summer Nights by Susan Mallery

Summer Nights by Susan Mallery Part of the Fool’s Gold series. Publication Date: June 26 2012 Publisher: HQN Books Pages: 384 Target audience: Adult Keywords: romance, sex, cowboys, second marriages Format read: ARC from Netgalley! Summary: Bitter from his divorce, Shane is determined to find a quiet, boring woman to marry when he settles back in Fool’s […]

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September 5, 2012 - 9:01 am

Adult Fiction Review: All Summer Long by Susan Mallery - […] I had heard the rumor that All Summer Long sizzled even more than the previous book in the Fool’s Gold series, Summer Nights. […]

August 5, 2012 - 10:47 pm

Melissa - Since July, I am reading All Summer Long right now & I am loving it!!

July 28, 2012 - 4:08 am

Stephanie G - Great review! Summer Nights was a fun story. I loved the dancing on the bar scene at the beginning. Fools Gold is such a great series. Susan is such a great story-teller and I absolutely love all of her books. 🙂

July 26, 2012 - 9:59 am

Tanya - Summer Nights is one of the best books I have read this summer! But then again, I always love Fools Gold. The playlist is awesome I love all tose songs buth what about THE Summer Nights anthem (you know the one from Grease) I know it’s not country but…I think it deserves an honorable mention. I can’t wait for All Summer Long to come out!!!!

July 23, 2012 - 10:42 pm

Estelle - Thx for stopping by Beccie! Your comment made me laugh. I should be starting her next book soon & I’m curious if she uses the same words… we shall see.

July 23, 2012 - 9:31 pm

Beccie Weaver - I’ve found that most romances I read lately all have the same sex scenes. I love Susan’s books so much but yes the scenes tend to sound cut and pasted

July 15, 2012 - 9:48 pm

Melissa - Summer Nights is a great summer read. Annabelle is caring, a great friend, & so sweet! I love that Annabelle wanted to learn how to ride a horse for her fundraiser for her bookmobile. I don’t want to give away anything. I love that there is so many surprises! There is 1 thing that I absolutely love a lot & it has to do with Shane, but I am not going to give it away. Summer Nights is my favorite book in the entire Fool’s Gold series!

July 9, 2012 - 1:22 pm

Dollie - I love the Fool’s Gold series, and your play list is AWESOME! I could totally see Luke Bryan or Jason Aldean holding a concert in Fool’s Gold. Your review of Summer Nights reminded me of how much I loved reading the book! My favorite part of Summer Nights has to be the ever growing farm 🙂

July 7, 2012 - 1:20 pm

Michele - I loved “Summer Nights” and the way Shane and Annabelle connected as friends and he didn’t even realize he was in love with her until she turned his marriage proposal. From cover to cover, this was a great book and for me, her books always end to soon. I can’t wait to read Charlie and Clay’s story in “All Summer Long”. I will be so sad when this trilogy comes to an end and we have to wait until next summer to get our fix again!.

July 6, 2012 - 4:34 pm

Tiffany - I love Susan Mallery’s books. I think this is a great read for those who love romance but want a great story to go along with it. Susan has built up her Fool’s Gold stories by building upon the town and it amazes me how they each stand alone but are perfect as a series too! I’d recommend buying this one and reading it again later.

July 6, 2012 - 7:07 am

Shannon - Fool’s Gold is addicting! Summer Nights was a perfect summer book. It should be on everyone’s must read list! Enjoy!

July 3, 2012 - 2:20 pm

Estelle - J, I think we need a sequel just about Shane.

July 3, 2012 - 2:20 pm

Estelle - S, let me know how you like the playlist! I really tried to capture the feeling in the book. Like utter hotness. ha

July 3, 2012 - 2:20 pm

Estelle - E, yep! The next book in the series is supposed to be even hotter. I got approved for it yesterday… and I’m scared. ha

July 3, 2012 - 5:18 am

VeganYANerds - I don’t read a lot of romance novels but this does sound fun! I like that there was a librarian and that she wasn’t stereotypical. I am wary of the way romance authors tend to overuse descriptions, but if it was only towards the end, I’m sure it’s not too bad!

July 2, 2012 - 5:12 pm

Alexa @ Alexa Loves Books - YAY FOR THIS PLAYLIST! I always like a good country recommendation, though I only started listening to it fairly recently. And this book sounds like a lot of fun! I’m definitely going to have to give this Fool’s Gold series a try 🙂

July 2, 2012 - 4:25 pm

Sharon @ Fictionally Inclined - A librarian and a cowboy? Yes, please! That pretty much guarantees any book a spot on my TBR list, regardless of plot, haha.

I’m excited to check out the playlist, too! I love listening to country music in the summer, so that will be perfect.

Great review. 🙂

July 2, 2012 - 12:17 pm

elena - Ooh, this book got you blushing? It must be really something then! Romance novels are fun and addicting. I mostly read historical romances but maybe I will branch out one day.

July 2, 2012 - 10:19 am

Jess @ Gone with the Words - I’m so happy you liked this one! It’s one of my favorite romance series and am always excited when my friends read them and like them. 🙂

Also, that playlist couldn’t be more perfect, Estelle!!! I’m going to listen to it anytime I feel like remembering the hotness that is Shane. 😀