Thursday Thirteen #5: 13 Favourite Romance Novels

When I tried to come up with ideas for this week’s TT13, I thought “13 Cups of Tea” might be a fitting (if slightly boring) topic. However, I’m sure I’ve already drunk more than 13 cups of tea today, so I had to drop the subject again. “13 Favourite Scenes from Gene Kelly Musicals” might have been fun on the one hand, but, on the other hand, might have been regarded as a Kelly overkill. So, no 13 scenes with Gene Kelly either.

Instead I’m going to do a list of 13 favourite romance novels to coincide with AAR’s current “Top 100 Romance Poll“. I put my list together sometime last week, but it still needs some tweaking because not only appear some of my very favourite novels in the 20s or even 30s right now, but because I also forgot to list Jane Austen and Julia Ross. Furthermore, I didn’t know it was alright to list novellas as well.

Right, so here’s a selection from my ballot for All About Romance:

13 of My Favourite Romance Novels

First, #1, 2, and 3 on my list:


2 Penelope Williamson, KEEPER OF THE DREAM


Some examples from my Top Twenty:

4 Gaelen Foley, LORD OF FIRE
(That scene when bad, bad Lucien Knight finds out the Goody-Two-Shoes heroine has managed to invade his den of iniquity? Priceless!)

5 Margaret Moore, THE WASTREL
(A very sweet historical with hysterical secondary characters — and as far as I know, it was one of the first Harlequin/M&B covers depicting only the hero)

6 Kathleen Givens, KILGANNON
(Kath’s debut novel was the second romance I read as a romance. You can therefore imagine what a pleasure it was to meet Kathleen in person for the first time at last year’s German Booklovers Conference. I’m happy to say that since then she has become a dear friend.)

(Wheee! One of those Golden Oldies — if I remember correctly it was also the first Holt novel I ever read back in my teens, and my German copy has long since been reduced to a mere loose-leaf collection *g*)

8 Julia Ross, NIGHT OF SIN
(How could I forget Julia Ross??? I got THE SEDUCTION and THE WICKED LOVER, which also made it on my Top 100 list, at the Beau Monde silent auction back in 2005. It were not only the gorgeous covers that first captivated me, but also the dedication to THE SEDUCTION: “This book is respectfully dedicated to the memory of Dorothy Dunnett. — Lymond will remain forever unequalled.” Hear, hear.)

Two novellas I particularily enjoyed

9 Sherrilyn Kenyon, “Fire and Ice” (from MAN OF MY DREAMS)
(Tortured hero anybody? *g*)

10 Rachel Gibson, “Now and Forever” (from SECRETS OF A PERFECT NIGHT)
(High-school lovers reunited at the high school reuinion, very sweet)

Books that stand out:

(An old Mills&Boon romance and a second-chance-at-love story. What I find so intriguing about this book is that the protagonists are in their late 30s / early 40s — not all that usual for a romance written in 1989!)

12 Susan Sizemore, WINGS OF THE STORM
(One of the best time travels I’ve ever read with a strong, but sweet hero, who is at one point likened to a big, old tomcat. *g*)

13 Valentina Luellen, THE DEVIL OF TALLAND
(One of the more obscure titles among my collection of romance novels; the back cover blurb reads: “Overwhelmed by pity and believing he had only a few hours to live, Roxanna agreed to marry the stranger she met in a Cornish inn. How could she have known that she would find herself caught up in a web of intrigue and treachery, where jealousy wrestled with a new found love. — Snatched from death by the husband she thought dead, could she trust the stranger who demanded his rights — handsome, enigmatic Ross, whom she suspected of being not only a smuggler, but a traitor to his country?” — What can I say? It’s got a “devil” in the title, which should tell you it is a good, old-fashioned romance with an moody, brooding, domineering hero!)

9 thoughts on “Thursday Thirteen #5: 13 Favourite Romance Novels

  1. Morgan St. John

    Oh, I’m first! That number 13 looks intriguing. Hmmm, great list. I love seeing what everyone else is reading! I love romance but can honestly say, I’ve never read any of those…including the Austen. *wince* don’t tell anyone that I studied Eng. Lit in college.

  2. Kaige

    I loved The Wastrel and have even reread it a few times. I also really liked the Galen Foley series. I may have to check out some of the others on your list! Thanks for sharing, Sandra!

    Happy TT!

  3. Patti Ann Colt

    This gave me the push I needed. I’ve had the 100 Top Romance list on my to do for quite awhile and haven’t started. Some of these are great blasts from the past. . . Victoria Holt particularly. And you should so do a Gene Kelley list – it will match the 13 great Frank Sinatra songs that I’ve been toying with doing.

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