Welcome and a happy new year to you all. It is with great pleasure that I present to you the 2019 yearly wrap up of Romance, Erotica and Romantic Suspense incorporated genres. I feel like an old hat now with this role, as this year marks my third year supporting the challenge as a volunteer. I have genuinely enjoyed delivering all the trends in romance to our eager eyed readers. This is my second experience of compiling a yearly wrap up for the challenge. I was able to make a few comparisons in the data which was great. I am honoured to announce that yet again the romance category has seen a significant increase in stats for the year. We jumped up by almost an extra 50 reviews! This really warms my heart, so I need to extend my thanks to  you all for diligence and enthusiasm towards this genre.

Romance is without a doubt a very diverse genre. It comprises of a variety of sub genres within the broad umbrella term of ‘romance’. In 2019, our romance readers submitted reviews for this wide genre that covered everything from rural romance, to historical romance, romantic suspense, contemporary romance, erotica, paranormal/fantasy themes and LGBTQI romance. I think you will agree, there is always plenty to choose from when it comes to the romance genre!

Drum roll please! Our final stats for the year reveal that romance collected in 450 reviews of 249 books by 150 authors in 2019. What an amazing result for this category!

Now for the specifics. The most popular books logged in by our romance enthusiasts for 2019 were:

  • Under the Midnight Sky by Anna Romer (11 reviews)
  • The Things We Cannot Say by Kelly Rimmer (10 reviews)
  • The House of Second Chances by Esther Campion (9 reviews)
  • Saving You by Charlotte Nash (9 Reviews)
  • The Cinema at Starlight Creek by Alli Sinclair (8 Reviews)
  • Matters of the Heart by Fiona Palmer (8 Reviews)
  • The Forgotten Letters of Esther Durrant (8 Reviews)
  • The Blue Rose by Kate Forsyth (8 Reviews)
  • Love and Other Battles by Tess Woods (7 Reviews)

As was the case in 2018, romance does overlap with many other categories, so I do expect to see a number of these titles appearing in other yearly wrap ups.

The author that collected the most reviews for the romance category in 2019 was Maggie Christensen, who received 12 entries linked to her name, across four different books. Anna Romer trailed just one review behind, with 11 entries logged in to her name. This was followed by Kelly Rimmer (10 entries), Esther Campion (9 entries), Alli Sinclair (9 entries), Clare Connelly (9 entries), Fiona McArthur (9 entries), Fiona Palmer (9 entries), Annie Seaton (9 entries) and Charlotte Nash (9 entries).

The top romance reviewer title for 2019 goes to Helen Sibbritt, who managed to log in almost 100 reviews for this genre alone! Congratulations Helen and thank you for your efforts! I trailed behind Helen with 74 reviews, while Claire, our Speculative Fiction Editor, made a massive contribution to the romance category with over 71 reviews linked to this genre. What a valuable asset all these reviews will be to our database. My sincere thanks go out to each and every challenge participant for their efforts in linking reviews to our site.

It is time to move on from the yearly wrap up and give some air time to our December 2019 results for romance.

Our December 2019 stats for romance indicate that we had 29 reviews, of 25 books by 20 authors. What a magnificent result to end the year on!

A quick glance over the trends for the month revealed that Lily Malone’s Last Bridge Before Home, which is the third issue in her well received Chalk Hill series was the most reviewed book in December. Last Bridge Before Home attracted 3 reviews, via Brenda, Claire’s Reads and Reviews and The Burgeoning Bookshelf.

Maggie Christensen made a strong appearance last month, with her second book in the Granite Springs series. The Life She Chooses reaped in two reviews over the past month, courtesy of Helen Sibbritt and Brenda.

Amanda Pillar was also noted as a popular author choice for December. Ju Transcendancing explored four different books in the Heaven’s Heart series. These titles included, Deadly Passion, Benevolent Passion, Winged Passion and Ascending Passion.

Moving on from urban fantasy to a very different romance genre, rural romance queen Mandy Magro continues to whet the appetite of her readers. Reviews came in for Magro’s latest, Riverstone Ridge and a backlist title, Bluegrass Bend in our round up period.

Kerry McGinnis also made a welcome appearance, with two reviews logged in for her latest rural suspense mystery novel, The Roadhouse. Sharon Hill and Jess from The Never Ending Bookshelf both highly recommend this title.

Finally, it didn’t surprise me at all when I noted that three Christmas novels made December’s round up list. Theresa Smith Writes explored The Christmas Witch by Carla Caruso, while Helen Sibbritt enjoyed two different seasonal reads with, The Magic of Christmas by Alyssa J. Montgomery and Midwife on the Orient Express: A Christmas Miracle by Fiona McArthur.

Thank you for following along with me for this extra special romance yearly wrap up, I hope a few books or romance authors caught your eye. Even though my TBR list is out of control, I added more than few books from this round up to my own wish list. May the new year and the new decade bring many wonderful romance books your way!

Don’t forget to sign up for the challenge, entries are now open and I’ve already made a start by completing my first book of #aww2020. Good luck to everyone who is joining us!

About me: I am a mum of two young boys, an early childhood teacher, dressaholic, book reviewer and self confessed book geek. In 2016, I turned my passion for reading into my own blog, Mrs B’s Book Reviews. I blog daily and love nothing more than to showcase books by our talented crop of Australian women writers, especially rural romance, along with a number of other genres. Check my reviews out at the following sites, Mrs B’s Book Reviews, Facebook, Goodreads, Instagram and Twitter.