Why I read Romance—13 Books that got me all Romancy

Why I read Romance—13 Books that got me all Romancy
I have a love-hate relationship with romance. Sometimes I like it, sometimes I don't, but I will always have this episode of craving for it. But then that's it, just sometimes.

I'm a self-proclaimed selective antisocial if that helps for an explanation. I don't have "normal" feelings just like most people. It's why I couldn't make friends easily. Add to the fact that I'm so choosy. But when I'm out in the public, I'm a very civil person that you would not be able to tell I'm antisocial. If it could be of any more help, I'm an INTP-A (I noticed it became imperative to point out your Keirsey Personality or your Myers-Briggs Type on most thought-based websites). Furthermore, because of my straightforwardness, all of my closest friends so far have unfriended me. Everyone will always have a last straw after n years of friendship. It's not the first, not the second, heck, not even the third time that a "best friend" cut off all ties from me. I'm not considerate, I just don't buy into people's BS.

Why am I saying these things on top of trying to answer "Why I read Romance"? It's Women's Friendship Day and I'm participating in Parajunkee's Romance-Tastic Challenge.

Why I read Romance and my highs and lows with Romance:

I read romance because I lack romance in my life.
— Not that I'm looking for any. I'm also an idealist that I couldn't bring myself to be in the company of others.

I don't like romance sometimes because I couldn't relate to women's feelings of insecurities and I would constantly roll my eyes with their irrationality.

I read romance because I want to feel since my feelings are lacking.

I don't like romance because the characters appear shallow as if romance is their only care in the world.

I read romance to know what it's like to yearn for someone.
— That will always be just a fantasy to me.

I like conflict and tension-building but some romance books only have cheese and romp that it gets sooooo boring.

I read romance because I want to ache for love.

I don't like romance when the plot is bombarded with so much drama. I love conflicts, not ugly-cry drama.

I read romance to feel wonderful when the characters get to be together.

Here are 13 Novels/series that gave me the most/best:

Romantic Adventure

Princess Bride by William Goldman

Princess Bride
I don't like the bland Buttercup but Westley is such a great swoon-worthy guy. Buttercup does not deserve him (let me not talk why, it's for you to find out) but Westley loves her anyway. The Princess Bride is an action/adventure romantic story set in a medieval world with sword-fighting, pirates, ROUSes (Rodents of Unusual Size), gradual-drinking-of-poison-to-build-resistance, and many other tropes that this book has probably started. The film adaptation of the same name is now an occult classic. Make sure to look forward to throwing peanut at the screen (when you do watch the film) and scream, "Inconceivable".

Swoon-Scenes

Lothario Series by Eve Montelibano

It's a contemporary romance series of 14 novelettes produced by my country's local publishing house on 2003. Each guy gets to have two novelettes, so there's a cliffhanger before the happy ending. I love Blue's story the most. Lothario series is my entry point to erotica. It's not erotica but it's a steamy erotic series nonetheless.

Fairy Tale Romps

The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty by Anne Rice

The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty
I'm not a fairy tale baby. I came from a poor family and was on my late teens when I first watched Disney adaptations of romantic fairy tales. My first exposure to fairy tale was Hansel and Gretel from a Regional Girl's Scout activity at age eight. To quote Boss Baby,

Let me get this straight, the story is about cannibalism and burning people alive. No wonder kids are so messed up!

I don't really feel the romance in The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty but boy did I feel the brutal romps. The sexual acts are so torrid, one reviewer claimed she wants to have her eyes bleached. I added this book here because of two terms: fairy tale (which this book is adapted from), and romp (which this book is delightfully saturated of). It's because of this book that Anne Rice was crowned the queen of BDSM books. Yes, she held that crown first before she got the crown for vampires.

Empowerment

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë

It's a timeless classic that exudes strength on the female protagonist, Jane. Her job is what we could equate today as a private tutor since female teachers are not yet legal in her time. It's not her having a job that makes her strong, it's her strength in mind and spirit. She's a powerful woman who knows how to command her heart and control Mr. Rochester's.

...Feels

Fallen series by Lauren Kate

For a time, I was so crazy about angels. Of course, it's easier to make a plot out of fallen angels (as what I observed) than the classic angels, and this series was the first that took me emotionally away.

Emotional Destruction

Love Me With Lies by Tarryn Fisher

The Opportunist by Tarryn Fisher Dirty Red by Tarryn Fisher Thief by Tarryn Fisher
This series is full of lies, deceit and manipulation. Tarryn Fisher will make an emotional masochist out of you after reading the series. You will go through pain and torture not because a character is dying from cancer (sorry, I've never read a Nicholas Sparks or John Green) but because of sheer emotional brutality. The series is about the romance between Olivia and Caleb as told in three books. The first book is written in the perspective of Olivia, the second in the perspective of the female nemesis, and the third of Caleb.

Happily-Ever-After

I've read some HEA, none I could say is best. This one is reserved because I couldn't think of any. Have you got any recommendation that I might like?

Kick-butt Female(s)

Penryn and the End of Days series by Susan Ee

Angelfall by Susan Ee World After by Susan Ee End of Days by Susan Ee Review
This is another entry about angels. This time, we're not talking about fallen angels, not even an ordinary angel, but an Archangel no less. What sets Archangels apart from other angels? According to the bible, they're the special kind. They're directly addressed by God to exact his plans in the world. They're the generals of all angeldom.

Anyway, we follow Penryn, a tiny 17-year old girl hell-bent on surviving and protecting her family in this apocalyptic world where angels thrive and human civilization fell into disarray. Angels play politics and get to become scientists... in their angelic ways. Raffe is one hot angel (the Archangel Raphael) with a humor to match. Penryn and Raphael's banters are what you'd always look forward to. That, and a potential romp. Don't even hope for the latter.

...Thrills

Vampire Knight manga by Matsuri Hino

Not really a book but it gave all the romantic thrills set in a vampire world. We follow Youki, an ordinary 16-year old girl who... well, let me backtrack. She's a prefect like that of Percy Weasley (because he's the only prefect we always see in the Harry Potter films) whose job is to enforce discipline on the Day Class students while looking out for the Night Class students. Unknown to the Day Class students, the Night Class is made up of vampires. Because vampires are vampires, it's natural for humans to fall prey into their charms. Her job isn't simple and so is the story.

Anyway, two hot guys are vying for her love. One is Zero, her co-prefect and the other, Kaname, the head not just of the Night Class but of the pure-blood Vampires. I'm on Team Kaname through and through even though the story got me seesawing between yearning for him or hating him (because he got me seriously scared at times). The anime adaptation on the other hand has a totally different take. Nothing was added but boy did the producers focused more on scenes that will get you hot for Zero. It's small wonder Zero made a lot of following and Kaname only has a fanbase from the manga.

...Chills

Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer

The first time I felt romance being associated with vampires was not this series, it was of an anime film, Vampire Hunter D. Anyway, this series has taken me by storm because of the author's excessive use of metaphors. The plot was lacking all throughout but you will never notice it because of the way the narration will get you carried away emotionally. It gave me such magical feelings of love, regardless of the terrible plot and cardboard characters.

Escape

Gakuen Alice series by Higuchi Tachibana

Another manga on the list. It's a school life manga in which characters have supernatural abilities called Alice. I forgot how old the characters started. If not nine, then 10 years old. It's full of tragedy and full of feels. I think of it as an escape because there's a strong romance between two characters and they're both just kids! I'd love to think of having a childhood romance like that. I read the manga in my teens and back then, I love to imagine being a kid dealing with my supernatural abilities (you see, most strong people with power in stories are adults, how about having that power as a child?) and have romance as the strong determining factor to save lives. Look how these kids do french kiss, even some adults (*coughs*) get none of that:

DeviantArt by xybolic
Um, I know that's not french kissing right above but you got at least three panels of different lip movements on the manga so...

Emotional Roller-Coasters

The Dark Duet series starting with Captive in the Dark by C.J. Roberts

Caleb, a man full of darkness, is bound to get his revenge on something he's built up for years. It's time for him to kidnap the perfect girl for this last mission. The girl so happens to be named Olivia. If you haven't noticed, we got the first pair of Caleb and Olive from above. Scroll back up if you've missed that.

Tags associated with the series: BDSM, erotica, non-consensual, kidnap, rape

Book Boyfriend(s)

There are many books or series worthy of book boyfriends that I could not pick a special one. The books mentioned above already have leading men worthy as book boyfriends, why should I go looking for another? Anyway, I'd like to mention Runners-up for book series: Neighbor from Hell series by R.L. Mathewson and Wicked Lovers series by Shayla Black.

That's it. How about you, what books had got you all romancy?

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