Keira: What are your favorite romance subgenres and why?
Carla: I can never seem to get enough of Regency/Victorian books. There were such complex rules for society, and particularly members of the ton. It is fun to see the heroes and heroines manage to follow some rules faithfully and struggle to follow others. Also it is particularly fun to watch them break rules and get caught.
Medieval history has always fascinated me. Once again society had such definite rules. When you bring in the ideal of romance with a knight, his lady and a castle to protect, I can really enjoy myself and sometimes learn something new about the period.
I see Contemporaries as a “break” from all that historical detail and social hierarchy. Heroes and heroines behave in a way that I can understand (well most of the time), and it is nice not to have so many rules restricting their behavior. They also remind me why I would probably not like to live in either the Regency/Victorian/Medieval times.
Keira: Sum up your top 5 favorite books in one sentence each (two at most!) and/or retitle your top 5 favorite books:
1) A divorced couple realizes their love while fleeing unrest in India.—Not Quite a Husband.
2) A plain woman marries the viscount that she has secretly loved for years and helps him to deal with a horrific episode in his past.—To Seduce A Sinner
3) After years of meaningless relationships free-spirit Cole falls in love with uptight accountant Jonathan.—Strawberries for Dessert
4) Deaf woman finds love and acceptance with the laird of a clan of werewolves.—Moon Craving
5) NASCAR widow loves again with the help of a younger, sexy driver.—Flat-Out Sexy
Keira: In romances is it the hero or heroine who makes or breaks the novel? Why?
Carla: I had to think about this one awhile. Since I am willing to put up with a TSTL heroine if I like the hero, I think it comes down to the hero for me. If a book is written in first person narrative from the heroine’s perspective, I will usually stop reading the book immediately. I need to know what the hero is thinking. (That way I can live vicariously through the heroine. LOL.)
Keira: Ready for a tough one? How do you define love?
Carla: I basically think of love as sharing your life with someone. You trust them, they trust you, and you have got each other’s back.
Keira: What are the most memorable sex scenes (good or bad) that you’ve come across?
Carla: Well I don’t know about most memorable, but one of my favorites is from Victoria Dahl’s, Start Me Up. Lori and Quinn have decided to embark on an affair (i.e., meaningless sex), and Quinn won’t proceed until he does a little research on what Lori likes in bed by reading a romance novel he finds her purse. That first sex scene where he “gives her what she wants” is hot, sweet, geeky, and funny all at the same time.
Keira: All’s fair in love and war. If it came down to a fight who would win: a vampire or a werewolf?
Carla: The werewolf would have the vampire down so fast he wouldn’t know what hit him.
Keira: What storylines do you love the most? The ones where if you saw any hint of them on the back blurb would make the book an auto-buy?
Carla: A marriage of convenience will hook me almost every time. (If it is an Earl/Duke marriage of convenience one, I am in romance heaven.) I also love the “ugly duckling” type stories where the hero falls in love with heroine even though she seen as quite plain to others.
Keira: And the opposite…What are some things you can’t stand reading about in romances?
Carla: As I hinted at above, TSTL heroines drive me crazy.
Please no fairies, elves, succubi, Hobbits, etc. I am pretty conventional when it comes to the paranormal (does conventional and paranormal even fit in the same sentence?) and stick mostly to werewolves and vampires.
Contemporary “women in jeopardy” ones can get extremely boring (she is wounded, they have sex, something gets blown up, they have sex, etc.)
Keira: What was the first romance you ever read? Do you own it? Is it the book that got you hooked on romances?
Carla: The first romance I remember reading was a Harlequin (back when there was only the one line) when I was in 8th grade. One of my classmates was always reading one, and I guess she must have lent this one to me. I remember that the cover was different from most of the ones that I had seen at the time. The story was a woman torn between two men, and both men were on the cover. One was in a ski suit and the other a business suit. I enjoyed it, but I didn’t really get hooked on romances until later.
Keira: Is there anything else you’d like to discuss? Floor’s open!
Carla: I was an early adapter of ebooks because of book allergies (started reading them in 2000 on my PalmPilot). For years I felt like I was out there alone, I am glad that with the Kindle and other devices ebooks are finally catching on, and I can read just about anything. That is why I like sites like this one to know what other people are reading. Thanks for having the site and thanks for inviting me to participate.