Guest Post by Catherine Bybee on “The Hardest Part” + Giveaway

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I’d like to welcome Catherine Bybee back to Reading Reality! She’s here today to talk about the first book in a new series (and today’s featured review) Doing It Over, the first book in her new Most Likely To series. (I keep thinking of it as the River Bend series). As you can tell from my review, I loved the book. I first got hooked on Catherine’s writing with her Highland Time Travel series, and her contemporary romances are every bit as much fun. If you like small-town contemporary romances you’ll love Doing It Over. And for Robyn Carr fans, think of River Bend as being just down the road from Thunder Point, an absolutely marvelous place to be.

The Hardest Part of Writing Doing it Over
By Catherine Bybee

doing it over by catherine bybeeDoing it Over is the first book in a new series. As if you didn’t know rolls eyes. That said, the hardest part came not from my characters, or even the plot… it came from the fictitious town I created and the world I painted.

World building isn’t just for paranormal romance. While I have written both, a contemporary world can be just as challenging, if not more so, than that with vampires and magic. In worlds where things are completely made up the reader simply accepts certain things as facts. Vampires need blood to survive. Werewolves need a full moon to change. If I say a wolf can only mate with a virgin… boom, the reader believes it. But boy…get the landscape wrong in a contemporary romance and readers will call you on that shit! Doesn’t matter that I’m making up my town…if I place it on a road someone has traveled, said reader will happily point out that there is no River Bend on the coast of Oregon. rolls eyes

World building is more than landscape. It’s a town, and the morals of those in the town…it’s time, and weather and time of year. It’s the financial crust of the character…are they rich, is there a matriarch in the family… clergy? It’s education and jobs. It’s all the extra characters that make the story full.

A new series, and especially the first book in the series, sets the stage for every book to come.

The hero and heroine are not the hard part…the love story…the plot…the twists and turns. No… easy for me. It’s the stage that is set that is always a challenge to weave into the pages.

Enjoy Doing it Over
Happy Reading

About the Author:
Copyright Julianne Gentry PhotographyNew York Times & USA Today bestselling author Catherine Bybee was raised in Washington State, but after graduating high school, she moved to Southern California in hopes of becoming a movie star. After growing bored with waiting tables, she returned to school and became a registered nurse, spending most of her career in urban emergency rooms. She now writes full-time and has penned the Weekday Brides Series and the Not Quite Series. Bybee lives with her two teenage sons in Southern California.CONTACT LINKS:


Catherine is giving away 1 Kindle Paperwhite and 2 $50 Gift Cards to lucky participants on this tour!

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Review: Seduced by Sunday by Catherine Bybee + Giveaway

seduced by sunday by catherine bybeeFormat read: ebook provided by the publisher via NetGalley
Formats available: paperback, ebook, audiobook
Genre: contemporary romance
Series: Weekday Brides #6
Length: 320 pages
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Date Released: April 14, 2015
Purchasing Info: Author’s Website, Publisher’s Website, Goodreads, Amazon, Barnes & Noble

She swore off love forever…but he just might change her mind.

Meg Rosenthal: Matchmaker by day, realist by night, Meg is not about to get swept away by a charming, darkly handsome businessman in a designer suit. She’s come to a beautiful secluded resort to evaluate the private island’s potential for her agency, not to ogle its owner. But there’s something about the magnetic man that’s hard to resist, even for a woman who refuses to fall in love.

Valentino Masini: A successful and drop-dead sexy businessman, Valentino is used to having the finer things in life. Yet he’s never wanted someone the way he wants Meg, who’s stirring up a hurricane of trouble in his heart. But just as he decides to convince her to stay, someone else decides it might be time to get Meg off the island…permanently.

My Review:

The romance in Seduced by Sunday is marvelously sweet and super hot, but what got me in the end was the intense feeling of danger that is faced by all the characters involved in this story. There were a lot of times where I was reluctant to read further, not because I wasn’t enjoying the story (because I absolutely was) but because I was so afraid for the characters that I didn’t want to see anything else bad happen to them.

Another very strong factor in this story is the power of friendship. Not just women’s friendships, although that is in full force and is the ultimate saving grace for several of the characters, but the strength and importance of true friendship, particularly in very stressful lives.

And last but not least, there is an element about the healing and saving power of being self-sufficient and self-reliant. It feels as if all of the women in this series have been through their own personal hells, have rescued one another by giving each one an important and fulfilling job, and then letting romance happen later as the icing on an already quite satisfying cake.

No one seems to get rescued by Prince Charming. It looks like occasionally they rescue each other, or the woman does the rescuing. I love that.

I’m saying all this even though I haven’t read the earlier books in this series. I loved Seduced by Sunday, and was on the virtual edge of my seat during some of the nastier events, but the sense that these people are all there for each other through thick and thin, because they’ve already been through hell together, shines strongly through the story even though there are only hints of the previous books. Those hints are more than enough to carry the reader along into their world.

Which doesn’t mean I don’t now have a yen to read the rest of the series, because I most certainly do. These women (and the men who deserve them) are awesome.

When Seduced by Sunday begins, the skullduggery that Meg Rosenthal hopes not to find at Valentino Masini’s modern-day version of Fantasy Island is not the evil she eventually uncovers. Val turns out to be one of the good guys, but he has been hoodwinked, and so has most of his family.

Meg is currently running the Alliance, an agency that very, very discreetly arranges contract marriages for people who need to fake being married in a way that no one can discover. Discretion isn’t just the Alliance’s middle name, it’s their first and last names too. These contacts are not about sex, they are about appearances. At the end of the year, the women walk away with a divorce and a sizable settlement. No one is supposed to fall in love with their contractual spouse-in-name-only, but occasionally they do.

Val Masini owns a private island resort that just might be secure enough for the Alliance to send their fake married couples on their equally fake honeymoons. Meg decides to investigate by taking her friend, and former client, Michael Wolfe to the island. They are not a couple, and Michael is gay. No one would care, except that Michael is a very successful leading man in Hollywood, and no one is quite sure whether Hollywood is ready to embrace a gay romantic/action-hero.

So the test is to see whether Val’s security is tight enough that no one is able to find them on the island, and that no one comments on their non-relationship. Meg doesn’t count on her attempted subterfuge being severely tested by her slightly officious host. But behind Val’s anal-retentive desire for security is a man who has been too buttoned up for far too long, and Meg has him breaking all too many of his own rules.

It all starts going sideways when Val discovers he has a security breach. What he can’t see, although the reader will figure it out long before he does, is that what he really has is a security blind spot. One that nearly gets both his sister Gabi and Meg, the woman he has come to love, nearly killed. That it also nearly ruins his entire business stops mattering the instant he is certain what went wrong. Which doesn’t help him save them. It’s all up to Meg to save the day – with a little help from a lot of her friends.

Escape Rating A-: I did figure out who was responsible for the security breach relatively early on. But the reason was way more convoluted, and much more dangerous, than I (or any of the characters) suspected.

I loved Meg as the heroine. She is tough and sassy and takes no nonsense from anyone, including Val. In spite of her need to monitor her own health due to her asthma attacks, she never sits on the sidelines and waits for stuff to happen. Her job with the Alliance is to investigate people and their potential weak spots, and she brings all of her skill and attention to bear the minute she starts thinking that there’s a problem at the resort.

Her “spidey-senses” tingle the minute she meets Val’s sister Gabi’s fiance. There’s something not quite right about Adolfo, even if she can’t pinpoint anything specific. He seems slimy, and Meg knows slimy is as slimy does. That Gabi and Val’s mother can’t stand the man is just another reason to dig and dig deep.

Meg is a force of nature. Once she gets rolling, all that the others can do it come along on the journey and help contain the fallout. She doesn’t just drag Val along (not that he isn’t willing to be dragged) but Michael is right in there digging beside her, even though he knows that the hornet’s nest they are stirring up will unmask all of his secrets. His friendship with Meg is more important than staying in the closet, no matter what the cost.

That all of Meg’s very influential friends pitch in and help when the true evil starts being uncovered is a testament to how much these people care about each other. It really shows.

treasured by thursday by catherine bybeeI like Val, but he just doesn’t come off as strong as Meg. This is her show, and it’s a winner. So is she.

In the end, it is really Meg who rescues poor Gabi. Not just by sweeping in with a virtual army, but by befriending her and giving her hope and purpose at a point in her life when everything has been stripped away.

Gabi’s story is next in Treasured by Thursday, and I can’t wait.




There are two separate giveaways available. The first one is for a Kindle and several gift cards. The second is for 3 ebook copies of Seduced by Sunday. Enter both for more chances to win!

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***FTC Disclaimer: Most books reviewed on this site have been provided free of charge by the publisher, author or publicist. Some books we have purchased with our own money or borrowed from a public library and will be noted as such. Any links to places to purchase books are provided as a convenience, and do not serve as an endorsement by this blog. All reviews are the true and honest opinion of the blogger reviewing the book. The method of acquiring the book does not have a bearing on the content of the review.

Bewitching Book Tours Hot Holiday Giveaway

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Bewitching Book Tours is running their second annual holiday giveaway, and it is massive! There are lots of prizes, including a Kindle Fire, Amazon gift cards, and ebooks by Bewitching authors! For a chance to win, use the Rafflecopter below:

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Interview with Author Allison Pataki + Giveaway

Allison PatakiMy guest today is Allison Pataki, the author of The Traitor’s Wife, today featured review. The book does an amazing job retelling a story that we all think we’re familiar with from a completely new perspective. I would recommend The Traitor’s Wife to anyone who enjoys historical fiction.

Before we hear from Allison telling us a bit about herself and how she came up with the idea for the story, check out this gorgeous book trailer for The Traitor’s Wife.



Marlene: Welcome Allison! Can you please tell us a bit about yourself?

Allison: Sure thing! I am an author in the process of publishing my first novel, The Traitor’s Wife. It is a historical fiction because, well, the only thing I love as much as reading and writing is studying history. That’s the work side of things.

On the other side of things, well, I am a wife to my college sweetheart. I am a daughter and a sister, the third kid in a family of four. I am a mother to a sweet little mutt that my husband and I adopted. I am a friend, a volunteer, an in-law, an upstate New Yorker living in Chicago. I love to cook, travel, do yoga, and, of course, read and write!

Marlene: Describe a typical day of writing? Are you a planner or pantser?

Allison: I would definitely say I am a planner – though the descriptor of “pantser” sounds way more fun. I’ve never heard that one before!

A typical day of writing begins pretty early. My dog and I begin the day by taking a walk along the river. This is a great time to think, shake off any sleepiness (the cold weather helps with that!), and get focused on whatever project in which I am currently involved.

After breakfast (and coffee!) I sit down to write. I generally work from home, so I have the liberty of dictating the background noise and, for me, that is always music. I will make a playlist or a Pandora station that seems to complement whatever topic about which I’m writing.

If time and life allow, I can sit there and work all day. Obviously I take breaks for lunch, another walk with the dog, etc. But, usually, I work up until dinner.

Often times, at some point, I will need to take a break to read up on something or do a little more research or digging. But, a really great day, in my book (pun intended) is one that I can devote entirely to writing. It doesn’t always work out like that, obviously!

Marlene: Why did you choose historical fiction as your genre?

Allison: It is without a doubt my favorite genre to read. To be honest, I never really thought about writing any other type of book. It is just what inspires me.

In college, I loved studying English and literature, but I also loved studying history. I decided to major in English and then take as many history classes as possible.

A genre that combines the two, as both a reader and a writer, is a win-win.

Marlene: Is the research part of the fun, or is it something that you have to get through in order to get to the fun parts?

traitors wife by alison patakiAllison: It’s absolutely part of the fun! I usually begin the research with little more than an idea. The person by whom I’ve been inspired, or the time period. As I uncover and digest the facts, pieces of the story or ideas for a character begin to take shape in my head. The research is undoubtedly what facilitates the development of the novel.

And research is not something that is “gotten through.” It’s ongoing. I am going back and reading and re-reading the research as I’m writing. Even now, when The Traitor’s Wife is just weeks away from publication, I’m still learning about the Revolutionary War time period and the people involved. If only I could keep adding details and throwing in these fun facts!

Marlene: The Benedict Arnold story is one that we all think we know. What drew you to re-tell a story that everyone feels like they are already familiar with?

Allison: Benedict Arnold’s story is what most people know. But not Peggy Arnold’s story. In fact, I would venture to guess that many people don’t even know Benedict Arnold had a wife, let alone one as powerful, intriguing and interesting as Peggy. That is precisely why I wanted to tell this story with Peggy as the subject.

As I researched for The Traitor’s Wife, I kept asking myself: “how come I’ve never heard this before?” I hope readers will feel the same way.

Marlene: Although the title of the book is The Traitor’s Wife, the point-of-view character is the traitor’s wife’s maid. What led you to choose the below-stairs perspective to tell the story?

Allison: At first, I thought about writing The Traitor’s Wife from the perspective of Peggy Shippen Arnold. She is, as you pointed out, the traitor’s wife, and the novel’s inspiration.

But as I researched the history, I realized that I really wanted to tell this story through the eyes of an observer. I wanted a narrator, a fictional character, who would meet Peggy Shippen Arnold and get to know her as the reader is doing so. A narrator who could watch the events unfolding, but at a little bit of a distance.

The novel would have been entirely different had I written it from Peggy’s perspective – both for the reader, and also for me, as the writer. I think introducing Clara’s perspective allowed it to be a more well-rounded story.

Writing from Clara’s perspective allowed me to interject feelings like hope, optimism, insecurity, and idealism into the novel. All of the feelings that one might have felt as he/she witnessed a new nation’s fight for independence.

Marlene: You are from a political family. How did your background help you in understanding the motivations of the characters?

Allison: I can’t say that it was too applicable in this case, simply because it is two entirely different times. The political landscape back then was not really like what it is today. George Washington didn’t even want our nation to have political parties.

What I did think about, however, was how Arnold’s personality, ego, and insecurities made him very ill suited for the public role he assumed. And, as a result, why he became such a bitter man.

If you are going to be a leader, you are going to be a target, and you must accept that. In politics – then and now – one must be able to work with others, to allow insults to roll off the chest, and to put one’s own personal woes to the side to work for the greater good. Arnold seemed to struggle with that.

Benedict Arnold was a skilled general and heroic patriot, yes, but he was not skilled in negotiating human relationships. That got him into trouble. He made enemies both in the army and in the Continental Congress.

Marlene: What is your favorite scene from the book and why did you pick that scene?

Allison: Probably the opening scene, when George Washington’s rider approaches the Arnold house. Washington is on his way! Further down the Hudson River, the treason is being uncovered, and yet, Peggy and Benedict Arnold are convinced that they have succeeded in their plot.

That is, until the second rider approaches. From this messenger, the Arnolds learn that their plan has been unearthed. And yet, Washington is still on his way! Chaos ensues.

I like that the novel begins with immediate tension and disaster. The rest of the novel then goes back and works up until this very moment, this fateful and disastrous morning.

Marlene: Title of a book that you’ve faked reading:

Allison: Les Miserables by Victor Hugo. I always just thought – because I had seen the musical, the movie, and listened to the CD over a hundred times – that I had as good as read the book. I knew the plot, right?

Wrong! This past year I decided to go back and actually read it, all 1,000+ pages of reading it. And boy is it a masterpiece. Totally worth the long slog.

Marlene: Title of a book that you’ve bought for the cover:

forgotten garden by kate mortonAllison: The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton. All of her covers have a similar look, and I think they are beautiful and whimsical and intriguing. I saw The Forgotten Garden in airport bookstores for months and always picked it up to admire the cover.

I’m glad I did so, because I loved it, and am now a huge fan of hers!

Marlene: Book that you most want to read again for the first time:

Allison: Gone With the Wind.

I haven’t read it in years. Scarlett O’Hara is perhaps my favorite female character in literature.

Marlene: As a debut author yourself, what words of advice would you give to aspiring authors?

Allison: Be forgiving. The first stuff you write is not going to be great. It might not even be good. Mine certainly wasn’t. But keep at it. Seek the input and advice of people you trust, and people who want to support you and help you grow as a writer.

If you feel impassioned to write and you have a story that you are consumed by, then write it. Write it, and edit it, and rewrite it, and edit it some more. Stick with it.

Marlene: What projects do you have planned for the future?

Allison: More historical fiction. I thought, while writing The Traitor’s Wife, that I would never love another book I worked on as much, ever again. But I was surprised. I found another topic that, to me, is equally fascinating and fun.

Marlene: Morning person or night owl?

Allison: Morning person. I mentioned coffee above, right? 🙂



Allison and Kismet Book Tours are giving away a Kindle Paperwhite to one lucky commenter on this tour. This giveaway is open to anyone living in a place where Amazon ships. Wow!

And for more chances to enter the giveaway, visit the other stops on this tour.

To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter below:
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Bewitching Book Tours Hot Holiday Giveaway


Giveaways from Bewitching Book Tours and their authors! To enter, use the Rafflecopter at the bottom of this post.

1 Kindle Fire HD 8.9 inch or equivalent value Amazon Gift Card

3 Bewitching Prize Packs full of books and book swag goodies- open to US Shipping- prize packs may contain print copies of The Hallowed Ones by Laura Bickle, Would Be Witch by Kimberly Frost and Earth Angel by E Van Lowe, Paranormal Pleasures by Roxanne Rhoads, Tasty Christmas Treats by Roxanne Rhoads- books will be distributed among the 3 prize packs

1 e-book set of the first three books in the Seven Seals Series by Traci Douglass

1 Release, book 3 of The Angler series by Annie Nicholas

1 ebook copy Murder on Mars A New Orleans Mystery by MM Shelley

1 Ebook giveaway Hollow’s End by Marianne Morea

1 Ebook copy of Tigress by JE Taylor

1 ebook copy of In Flames by Jessica Jayne

1 copy of River Road by Suzanne Johnson

1 ebook copy of Visionary- Unleashed by N Dunham

1 copy of each Bleeding Hearts and Blood Rush by Ash Krafton

1 ebook copy of Soul Meaning (Seventeen Book 1) by AD Starrling

1 ebook copy of Blaze Ignites by JL Madore

1 e-book copy of Operation Earth by Maria Hammarblad

1 Earth’s Requiem. Print if in the U.S., an e-copy otherwise.

1 ebook copy Silent Oath (Book 2 of the Locked Within Trilogy) by Paul Anthony Shortt

1 Ebook: Five Golden Rings by Jeffe Kennedy from the Season of Seduction Carina Press erotic holiday anthology

1 eBook: An Unexpected Bride (The Bride Series, Book 1) by Shadonna Richards

1 eCopy of Divine Destiny by Joanna Grace

1 Ministry Protocol: Thrilling Tales of the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences

1 Ebook giveaway. “Beautiful Stranger” by Katalina Leon

1 ebook copy of Chasing the Star Garden by Melanie Karsak

1 ebook copy of Cleaning Up by Jophrael L Avario

1 One e-book copy of Haven by Celia Breslin

1 one e-book copy of Dragon Fire by Dina Von Lowenkraft

1 ebook copy of Hex and the Single Witch by Roxanne Rhoads

1 one kindle copy of Cassie Scot: ParaNormal Detective by Christine Amsden

1 One ecopy of Cursed Ever After by AC James

1 copy of The Miss Education of Dr. Exeter by Jillian Stone

1 ecopy of Catwalk:Messiah by Nick Kelly

1 ecopy of Wucaii by Pembroke Sinclair

1 ecopy of The Bottom Line by Shelley Munro

1 Ebook copy of Dangerous Pursuit by Margaret Daly


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Guest Post by Author Gina L. Maxwell on the Yin-Yang Relationship + Giveaway

Today I’d like to welcome Gina L. Maxwell, the author of the recently published Hawaiian island escape romance Rules of Entanglement (read my review of it here) and the totally awesome Seducing Cinderella (reviewed at Book Lovers Inc.)

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The Yin-Yang Relationship
by Gina L. Maxwell

One of the best compliments I’ve received when it comes to Rules of Entanglement is not only that readers love how different my hero Jax is from my heroine Vanessa, but how well they work as a couple.  They are, for all intents and purposes, complete opposites. He doesn’t own a watch and she believes in being on time—always! To give away all of their differences would be to spoil the book for you, but penning their story really drove home the fact that the Yin-Yang relationship is one of my absolute favorite to write. Being able to develop characters that are so different and yet so perfect for each other is not only a challenge, but it’s also one wickedly wild ride. Often times, the Yin-Yang relationship seems to be the most interesting. Yes, compatibility with someone is amazing, but when it comes to “opposites” couples, there’s just a little something extra that keeps them going. It translates well on paper, but sometimes, there are moments of doubt when you think to yourself, “these people would never really be together.” In those instances, you only need to look to real life to verify your work.

Take this couple I know. Let’s call him Nick and we’ll call her Amanda. Nick likes to hunt and fish and would rather be in a tree stand than doing anything else in the world. Amanda listens to classical music, loves British comedies and does Yoga. Apart, it would never dawn on me to envision these two as a couple, but when they are together, it’s like they were meant to be. The same goes for Jax and Vanessa. I couldn’t have written any other hero for her and I for damned sure couldn’t have put him with any other woman. They fit together. For all of his surfer swagger and her DA discipline, one thing is for sure; in their case, opposites not only attract. They smolder!

Gina L. MaxwellAbout Gina L. MaxwellGrowing up in small town Fort Atkinson, WI, Gina L. Maxwell, formerly Bisbee, could often be found onstage in the latest theatrical production, performing with her high school show choir, or holding office in her local FFA chapter. She dreamed of following in her father’s footsteps in the entertainment business, of enabling her audience to forget about life for a few hours as they enjoyed the stories she told through her love of singing, dancing, and acting. It wasn’t until her sophomore year in college when she realized she had no acting talent to speak of and her dream needed some adjusting. Another ten years would pass before she discovered a different means to accomplishing the same dream.Within those ten years Gina married her high school sweetheart, had two beautiful children, and moved more times than she cared to count. In 2009 she started writing as a hobby while her kids were in school, and it quickly became an obsession she couldn’t stop, and then a dream to publish stories of love and passion for romance addicts just like her.

Three years later, her dream came true when she signed with Entangled Publishing for a total of seven books in two of their imprints.
Her Fighting for Love series with MMA heroes debuted July 20th, 2012 for the digital Brazen imprint with the first book, Seducing Cinderella, and reached #9 on Barnes & Noble’s best seller list in just seven days.

When she’s not writing or wrangling plot bunnies, Gina keeps busy with her wonderful family and their ever-growing extra-curricular schedules. Thanks to their immense patience and support, she’s able to do The Thing She Was Meant To Do and live her dream of bringing a little romantic fantasy to the world, even if only in the pages of a good book.

To learn more about Gina, visit her website or follow her on Twitter, Facebook, or Goodreads.


Gina L. Maxwell Swag PackGina is giving away a Seducing Cinderella and Rules of Entanglement swag pack!

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Gina is also giving away a Kindle Fire HD or a $200 Amazon Gift Card to one lucky winner on the blog tour. To enter, use the Rafflecopter below. For even more chances to enter, visit the other stops on the blog tour!

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Guest Post: Author Kathryn Barrett on Genre Busting + Giveaway

My guest today is Kathryn Barrett, the author of an unusual and fascinating spin on the Adam-and-Eve story of the Garden of Eden, Temptation. She’s here today to talk about how her love story of a Hollywood actress and an Amish furniture maker (while extremely compelling, see my review for deets) breaks multiple traditional genre concepts in to tell its story.


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The Genre-Busting Book

I never set out to write an Amish romance. Frankly, I’ve never even read an Amish romance.

But somehow I managed to write one, at least seemingly write one.

Temptation is not an Amish romance; it’s a romance set in Amish country, a distinction I wanted to make clear. It features Amish characters, including a main character, Jacob, who is an Amish furniture maker.

Nor is Temptation, like most Amish romances, an inspirational romance (sometimes called Christian romances). In an inspirational romance, a character typically finds their faith (having nearly lost it during the course of the book) at the end. Temptation is, if anything, an anti-inspirational. Jacob does not (spoiler alert!) find his faith in the end. At least, not in the traditional way. I suspect he’s found something much better, but I’ll leave that to the reader’s imagination.

I never set out to write a genre-buster, but when I heard my publisher refer to it that way in an interview, months before Temptation was released, I realized she’d correctly characterized the book.

Temptation by Kathryn BarrettOne of my biggest fears, right before Temptation was released, was that I’d get awful reviews on Amazon, similar to some of Annette Blair’s, from people complaining about the fact that there’s sex in an Amish romance. Her books (which otherwise got very good reviews) feature explicit sex, as does mine, and I could just see the same outraged reviewers labeling my book “trashy” due to its content. So I tried to be clear in the early marketing: don’t expect to find a sweet romance here. On the other hand, the idea of very explicit sex, in this setting and between these characters, is somehow wrong as well. (That comes later, after the epilogue, trust me.)

Genre exists partly because readers want to be reassured when they buy a book that certain conventions are met: a happy-ever-after ending, a solution to the crime, etc. Readers want the comfort of knowing that their worst fears—of a main character dying, for instance—won’t come true. But sometimes we want a little extra in the mix: a police procedural cop who falls in love, a horror novel set in outer space. An Amish romance that doesn’t close the door when the hanky panky starts.

A few months ago some writers were talking about a rumor they’d heard of a new “Amish erotica” sub-sub-genre. We all expressed our shock—such a mismatch of expectations! But I wondered if my book had somehow contributed to that meme. Or is there someone out there writing hot, steamy Amish romance?

Perhaps they didn’t set out to write an Amish romance. Perhaps they’d never even read one…

What are the bounds of genre, and when is it okay to break them? Do readers’ expectations matter? I’d love to hear what readers think, in the comments.

Thanks for having me here at Reading Reality, Marlene, and allowing me to explore the idea of genre.

Kathryn BarrettAbout Kathryn BarrettKathryn Barrett has been writing women’s fiction since the day her youngest daughter left for pre-school. All was going well, until she read a book called “30 Mistakes In Fiction Writing” and realized she was making all of them.

One by one, she’s overcome the mistakes and learned to make a few more along the way. “The best way to learn to write is to write,” she says. “Period.”

Kathryn lives near London in the enchanting countryside of England. When she’s not writing, she’s busy training a rescue dog, tramping around archaeological ruins, and occasionally making wine runs to France. Because nothing fuels the imagination like a good Bordeaux.

To learn more about Kathryn, go to her website, Facebook, and Twitter.



Kathryn is kindly offering TWO giveaways! At Reading Reality, she is giving away an ebook copy of Temptation. The grand prize for the blog tour is a Kindle Paperwhite. Check out both Rafflecopters!

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