It’s been a bumper of a month with a total of thirty-two (32) reviews across twenty-four (24) titles submitted for the Erotica, Romance and Romantic Suspense category in February. Despite being the shortest month of the year, reviews for romance books are up by two (2) compared to those submitted in January 2021. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to review and link books within this category in the Australian Women Writers Database.
Of the twenty-four (24) books reviewed in February, thirteen (13) of them were traditionally published and eleven (11) were self-published. Fifteen (15) of these books were published in 2021, six (6) in 2020, one (1) in 2019, 2016 and 1921 respectfully. Historical Romance proved to be the most popular subgenre of romance reviewed in February with a total of eight (8) individual titles reviewed; followed closely by contemporary romance with six (6) books reviewed, romantic suspense with four (4) books reviewed, and rural romance and category romance each with three (3) books reviewed.
February’s top three reviewed books were:
- Snowy Mountains Daughter by Alissa Callen with five (5) reviews.
- Crackenback by Lee Christine with three (3) reviews.
- Emma by Fiona McArthur with three (3) reviews.
February’s top two review contributors this month were:
- Helen Sibbritt with a staggering twelve (12) reviews!
- Claire Louisa Holderness with an amazing seven (7) reviews!
Snowy Mountains Daughters by Alissa Callen was our top reviewed book this month and with good reason. Claire Louisa Holderness summed the book up as being “a story about love, friendship, families and secrets and the damage those secrets can cause, as well as taking a chance on happiness.” Likewise, Veronica at the Burgeoning Bookshelf had this to say:
Snowy Mountains Daughter is vividly described from the snow capped mountains to the gum trees and wooden bridges the setting comes alive on the page. A free-roaming kelpie, a second chance at love and a dying mans confession make Snowy Mountains Daughter a story that will have your emotions reeling
With an intriguing storyline, fast paced action, and strong characterisation, I thought Crackenback was a great book, and I’ll definitely be reading Christine Lee’s next.
Fiona McArthur and her Lyrebird Lake series once again proved popular with reviewers, with this month seeing Brenda, Claire Louisa Holderness and Helen Sibritt all reviewing the fourth and final book in the series, Emma, and Veronica @ the Burgeoning Bookshelf reviewing Misty (book 2).
Brenda “highly recommend[s]” the fourth book Emma, summing up the entire series as “a delightful series, and [she is really] looking forward to Ms McArthur’s next offering – “The Doctor’s Gift” – coming May 2021.”
The strength of this book, besides the incredible historical detail, is in the characterisations. The major players – and even the minor ones – are well-rounded and fleshed out, with believable motivations and behaviour. The dialogue is spot-on and the gentle humour that suffuses the book – especially Kit’s internal monologue about her emotional dilemmas and the choices she must make – really make The Charleston Scandal an easy and satisfying read. And while there is no abject violence or gratuitous sexual action, the story is layered with a certain risqué and titillating subtext that strikes just the right chord of tension and humour.
This was an entertaining read which kept me up past my bedtime as I wanted to know how the drama all played out.
About Me: Hey, I’m Jess from The Never Ending Bookshelf. I’m an avid reader, book collector (sometimes book hoarder) and a hopeless romantic. I live and breathe everything to do with the written word, working by day as a bookseller and by night as a book blogger. You can find me at The Never Ending Bookshelf, Instagram, Twitter, Goodreads and on Facebook.