Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Eleven Steps to Reading Heaven!

by Anna Campbell

It is my huge pleasure to invite back one of our most popular guests and a brilliant writer too, Sarah MacLean. Make sure you comment today because Sarah has very generously offered one of our buddies the chance to win signed copies of the ENTIRE LOVE BY NUMBERS TRILOGY!

Wow, wonder if hostesses are eligible! If not, can I adopt a false name? A moustache? Get botox?

What? You still recognize me? Sheesh! Being a master criminal isn't as easy as it used to be!

Sarah's latest historical romance from Avon ELEVEN SCANDALS TO START TO WIN A DUKE'S HEART is out on the 26th April (clearly an auspicious day for book releases, snicker!) and is dominating the bestseller lists as we speak. It's also garnering rave reviews, including a Top Pick review from RT Book Reviews, where Kathe Robin said:

The third book in the Love by Numbers series is a fast-paced, funny and tender read. You’ll love watching MacLean’s well-developed characters fall in love and define their relationship and enjoy the cameo appearances of her first two couples in this unforgettable story.

Here's the very cute trailer for ELEVEN SCANDALS:



You can find out more about Sarah and her fabulous romance novels on her website.

So without further ado, here's Sarah!

Thanks so much for having me, Anna! You know how much I like the pina coladas over here at the Bandits. *hic!* No more until the interview is over, though.

Sarah, put down that cabana boy! You can't have your dessert until you eat your vegetables! As you know I loved NINE RULES TO BREAK WHEN ROMANCING A RAKE. But I think I loved TEN WAYS TO BE ADORED WHEN LANDING A LORD even more. I was entranced by the characters in that story. Now ELEVEN SCANDALS TO START TO WIN A DUKE’S HEART has hit the stands (and my bedside table). Can you tell us about this story?

You have no idea how much it means to have *you* say such lovely things about my books...I am such a HUGE Anna Campbell fan...HUGE.

(Anna Campbell preens like a swan! Well, maybe like a goose, but she's a goose who likes to think she's a swan!)

As for Eleven’s story...this is the one that everyone has been waiting for. The heroine, Juliana Fiori, is the scandalous Italian half-sister of the heroes of the first two books, and she’s been slowly coming out of her shell while her brothers have been busy finding love. Readers have also met the hero, Simon, Duke of Leighton, who is the worst kind of cold, immovable, autocratic duke. Just ripe for a dressing down. And I mean that in all possible ways.

When scandal meets propriety, sparks fly...and that’s where Eleven lives.

Ooh, love it. I actually love immovable object, irresistible force romances and this sounds like a fantastic example! What’s next for Sarah MacLean?

My next series, THE FALLEN ANGEL quartet, follows four aristocrats, cast from society by scandal, now partners in London’s most notorious gaming hell--The Fallen Angel. The first book, A ROGUE BY ANY OTHER NAME, tells the story of Michael Lawler, Marquess of Bourne, who will do anything to rebuild his lands and fortune--including marrying a woman who is entirely too innocent for his wicked ways.

Sounds delicious! What made you choose the Regency as your setting? You obviously have a passion for early 19th century Great Britain!

I blame Johanna Lindsey and Judith McNaught. When you’re a kid growing up in Rhode Island, and someone puts WHITNEY, MY LOVE or GENTLE ROGUE in your hands...you never go back. It was only a matter of time before I was reading any Regency-set (the traditional Regencies were too tame for my teenaged self) historical I could get my hands on. By the time Stephanie Laurens and Julia Quinn and Eloisa James and Lisa Kleypas came along, I was already an addict...and they just made it worse.

So, when I finally set pen to paper to write my first book, Regency-set is what came out. And I knew better than to fight it.

You’ve been published now for a little over a year with FOUR books out in that time (“Where’s my hartshorn?” she shrieks in best Regency fashion). It must have been a total whirl. What do you wish you’d known before you published that you know now? Were there any surprises along the way?

LOL! I’m not sure I know anything more now than I did then! But here are three things that I have written on notecards in my office that I find help (or, at least, make me feel better!):

1) Every book is different. (This one helps when I think, “But the beginning of *that* book was so *easy*! I thought I *mastered* beginnings! Why does *this* beginning suck?!?”)

2) The darkest hour is before the dawn. (This one is necessary for the moment you get 300 pages into a manuscript and think, Oh, my God. What was I *thinking*? Usually it takes me a week of noodling and fixing and going back to the beginning before I break through and sprint to the finish.)

3) Someone will love this book. Someone will also hate it. (This one is for those stupid moments when you are a dumb author and look at reviews.)

Can you take us through a typical Sarah MacLean day?

I’m not sure you can handle the excitement of my days, honestly. Brace yourselves.


8:30 - Alarm goes off. Snooze hit.
8:42 - Alarm goes off again. Snooze hit again.
8:44 - Dog stands over head, whining.
8:44:25 - I say, “No. Go away,” in firmest, most masterful voice possible (there has to be some cosmic problem with the fact that my first words most mornings are “No. Go away,” but let’s leave that for another time).
8:44:27 - Dog starts whining again.
8:45 - Husband’s alarm goes off. I give up on sleep.
10:00 - Teeth brushed, dog fed, tea poured, email checked, Facebook checked, Twitter checked. Husband gone, dog walked. Time to write.
11:00 - Spent additional hour on Facebook, reading Anna Campbell’s midnight posts and pretending to do important “authory” stuff. Really, though. Time to write. Receive new email. Sale at The Gap!
12:00 - Have bought new clothes, despite the fact that I spend all day in yoga pants and a tank top. *Now* must write. Turn off Internet (I have no willpower, whatsoever) for three hours. Write.
12:30 - Make more tea. Write.
1:00 - Time for lunch break. Telephone call with a) my best friend, b) my sister, c) my mother or d) all of the above.
1:30 - Write. Possibly, something worth reading.
2:30 - Dog begins whining. Time for a break, anyway. What can you really do in 30 minutes?
3:00 - Have done God knows what, but lost 30 minutes doing it. Back to computer. Time to write. Oh! Look! Internet is back. I’ll just check email for two quick minutes. Ooh! Sale at Nine West!
4:30 - Have checked every website known to man, bought shoes and twitpic’d dog doing something adorable, like sleeping on a stuffed hedgehog. Oy. Back to work. Internet off for another three hours. Write.
5:30 - Have I showered today? Shower.
6:30 - Consider the possibility that husband might want dinner. Sort takeaway menus. Return to desk. Write.
7:45 - Husband comes home. I realize that I was actually working and did not notice a) the Internet returning, b) the sun setting, or c) the fact that the house is now in a state of complete blackness. This means I actually got work done! Huzzah!
8:00 - Husband asks how day was. I tell the truth. I worked very very hard. And was extremely productive.
8:30 - Takeaway arrives. We watch an episode of The West Wing, which by now we could do without a television since we know all the words anyway.
9:30 - I return to office to write. Ooh! Anna Campbell is awake in Australia!
10:00 - Anna is a wicked, evil distraction, sent to ruin my writing career. Internet off. Write.
12:00 - To Bedfordshire.
Rinse. Repeat.

Bwahahahaha! My evil plan is working... Hold on, if you don't write, I don't get any new books from you. Goose Campbell returns to barn to ponder a NEW plan! Perhaps I should email Sarah and ask her how she thinks I should proceed - oh, that's right, she's buying shoes at Nine West and isn't on the Internet (snork! Or perhaps as I'm now a goose, honk?).

Sarah, do you have anything you want to ask the Bandits? And no, requesting a recipe for roast goose is not appropriate!

I just confessed that Johanna Lindsey and Judith McNaught were my gateway drugs to romance. Those Malorys! Those Westmorelands! I mean, seriously? How’s a girl to resist? So...time for you to fess up! Who were the authors (or what were the books) that got you hooked on romance? One commenter will win signed copies of the entire LOVE BY NUMBERS trilogy!

173 comments:

Kim in Hawaii said...

Aloha!

Kim in Hawaii said...

I discovered romance in the Netherlands, living across from a castle and taking tea with the British Delegation. We literally emptied the American thrift shop and shipped the stuff to NATO Troops in Kabul who wanted to help an orphanage. Left behind were English language books. One with a blue cover and tartan sash called to me - Cathy Maxwell's A MARRIAGE CONTRACT. I devoured everything in the Thrift Shop, Stars and Stripes Book Store, and even swapped books with other spouses. Loved Lindsey, Deveraux, and Moning. These books inspired me to make that trek to Scotland!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Kim, not often you get the chook for the day! Congratulations! Love your story about how you discovered romance!

Sheree said...

Congrats on the rooster, Kim!

My first romance was "Anyone But You" by Jennifer Crusie which I read as an ebook I borrowed from my local library one night when I sick and in bed.

Of course, I had previously read romances but those don't signify (I didn't understand them when I was 7 and in college, they were all the books that the previous dorm residents left - it was an all-female dorm).

Kati R said...

I discovered romance books at my local library at 14 years old. All I remember about that first book was that the hero was a highlander. As for the story or the heroine, I honestly don't remember. The first 2 authors I do remember reading are Victoria Alexander and Sabrina Jeffries. The Effington's and pirate lords.

Oh Ms. MacLean, I just adore your Love by Numbers trilogy and your covers are just amazing. I especially love your latest one because it's pink. :) And I cannot wait for your next series. You had me at "scandal" and "notorious gaming hell."

Linda said...

I have the 1st 2 books in the series & really enjoyed them; especially the 1st one. Looking forward to #3!

I was influenced by my older sisters at the tender age of ...11? 12? I forget exactly but my sisters were reading (believe it or not) Barbara Cartland then & that got me started. At that tender age, it was a good thing that I started off "lightly".

jo robertson said...

Hi, Sarah! Welcome back to the Lair. What a delightful interview, Anna!

I adore your books, Sarah and can't wait to add ELEVEN to my collection.

My gateway book to romance was GONE WITH THE WIND, and although it isn't a traditional romance, it swept me away with its grand passions.

lindsey hutchison said...

i cant say authors. but i can say books. i was 13 and we went to the salvation army when all books were 5 cents. i picked up a cover and it said harlequin romance so i read the back. next thing i know im walking out with a bag of books. then i ask my mom for my birthday since we didnt have much money if we could go back cause i got real into the few i got in that back. and when we went back i spent a hour putting every harlequin i saw in a bag and walked up to pay with like 70 books for bout a few bucks. i sometimes still visit a salvation army or thrift shop for books but now there 25 cents. lol

Danielle Gorman said...

I have always liked romance it just took me awhile to move on from YA romance to adult romance. I remember when I was about 11 or 12 that there was this Baby Sitter's Club book where the girls went away for the summer and Stacy had a little romance. I would read and reread this book just so I could read about her summer romance. After that I got really heavily into RL Stine and Christopher Pike. When reading these books I would gobble up all of the romance parts. After that I found a teen series that would release a new love story every month by a different author. I loved these and some of them are still my all time favorite books.

barb said...

Well done Kim

I don't think you are able to disguise yourself Anna... you would only have laugh LOL

I can't remember who as I have been reading for so long....I don't know if you could call Catherine Cookson books romance but they always had a HEA..... I do remeber the Bridgertons though....

I have read your other books Sarah so I am waiting to read this book... congratulations

Christine Wells said...

Hi you terrible twosome! Anna, thanks for having Sarah on today. Laughed through your schedule but identified with it completely! Somehow, the work always gets done, though, doesn't it?

I'd have to say Georgette Heyer was the writer who got me hooked on romance and I hadn't read many Regency set historicals until our Anna took me under her wing! She introduced me to authors like Loretta Chase and Laura Kinsale and so many more! So it's all Anna's fault. Lucky buying these books is a tax deduction now. otherwise I'd be sending you a bill, Ms Campbell!

Love your notes to yourself, Sarah. I'd add one for myself. "Your process sucks. Always has, always will. Get over it!"

Congrats on the rooster Kim!

krazymama_98 said...

I could not begin to applaud or blame one author for my addiction. haha I quit smoking 2 years ago and so now, it is easily my biggest vice! :-) Too many wonderful favorite authors to pick 1, 2 or 100.....:)

Janet said...

Danielle Steel would have to be the first one that comes to mind. But there have been so many which keep me hooked that it is not an easy question. :)

jennifertanner said...

Hi Anna & Sarah!

Great post! And darn those blasted internet shopping sites! Shhh! (www.bodenusa.com and www.gilt.com are among my biggest time sucks)

I was late bloomer when it came to reading romances. Judith McNaught and Candice Proctor were the first romance authors I remember reading... Whitney, My Love and Whispers of Heaven. After that, I read all of Julia Quinn's and Lisa Kleypas' books. Thanks to the Banditas, I've discovered some wonderful authors.

Cheers!
Pink

Anna Campbell said...

Sheree, love Anyone But You - the dog in that is a classic!

Anna Campbell said...

Kati, we'll have to get Sarah to write faster, won't we? She had me at those lines too!!!! So glad you're a fan! Thanks for swinging by the Bandits.

Anna Campbell said...

Linda, I devoured Barbara Cartlands between the ages of about 10 and 14. Thank goodness she was so prolific and could feed my addiction. I learnt an awful lot of history from her.

Anna Campbell said...

Jo, I actually think Gone with the Wind IS a romance, but one without a happy ending. What a fabulous introduction. So glad you enjoyed the interview - Sarah's always such fun to have on the Bandits!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, Lindsey, that's inflation for you, LOL! Love your story about your intro to romance. We used to take a whole box full to the local book exchange once or twice a year and I used to stock up on lots and lots of Mills and Boons (Harlequins). Still remember with great fondness reading those books over my summer holidays. In fact, I wrote a piece about it on my website: http://annacampbell.info/favethings11.html#feb11

Anna Campbell said...

Danielle, I used to gobble up the romance bit in books that weren't designated romance novels too. Romance novels were even better - the whole book as the romance!

Anna Campbell said...

Barb, I suspect if I was done up in a false moustache, I WOULD be laughing! I think Catherine Cookson wrote romances - my mum used to just love them. I read a few but I must say they didn't have quite enough glamour quotient for me. I was clearly a very shallow child ;-)

Anna Campbell said...

Christine, love the process note. I might steal it. I'm going to steal Sarah's. You know, imitation is the most sincere form of flattery! Hey, if you bill me for your books, does that mean they come off my tax too? ;-) And think what fun you've had with all those love scenes...uh, historically accurate depictions of the Regency period. Snork.

Anna Campbell said...

KrazyMama, romance novels are MUCH better for you than smoking! And you can't smoke a good cigarette twice whereas you can re-read a great romance novel! Do you like my theory?

Anna Campbell said...

Janet, I haven't ever read a Danielle Steel! She's tremendously popular here and my mum loved her books.

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Jen, stick with us and we'll take you to the best corner of the bookshop - a bit like the rake takes the debutante to the best corner of the garden maze. Bwahaahahahahaha! So glad we've recommended some great books to you. I know the Banditas have been bad news for my credit card!

desere_steenberg said...

Hi Anna, Hi Sarah,

I discovered romance at the library 5 years ago. My very first book from the romance shelve was a book by Abby Green called The Spaniards Marriage Demand,and the rest as they say is history. From there I delved into every romance I could find modern day romances, historicals anything I could find by any authors. I snooped around on the internet to find as much information as possible and to do research as to which various types of romance novels can be found.

Anna thank you so much for a brilliant interview with the facinating Sarah.

Sarah thank you so much for visiting today your love by numbers series has been on my saving list from when the very first time I discovered you via a post on Anna's Facebook page,you might wonder why I have not bought some of them already, the answer is that I read a excerpt on each of them and I can tell that once I start with the first one I am only going to go crazy with wonder if I cant start the next one therefore I am saving up in order to buy them all at once.

Thank you for giving us the chance to win the entire set you are truly very generous to offer up such a wonderful prize and to whomever is lucky enough to win I am sure they will be just as I know I would be, very honored to own a complete signed set.

Good luck to us all and thank you again to Anna and Sarah.

Desere

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Desere, how cool that you started with Abby. She's a friend of mine and she's a wonderful lady. And how wonderful that you enjoyed the interview so much. I have to say Sarah's a dream to have as a guest! And she's so funny. I found myself snorting tea all over my keyboard when I was putting her post up and reading her answers.

Alyn said...

I do not remember the title of the first romance book I ever read. I do not remember the author either. I just remember the cover had a half naked man on it. I read it when I was either in 5th or 6th grade. I found the book in my older brothers room and thought I would give it a try. The book literally blew my mind. It was definitely different from all the other books I had been reading up to that time. I knew I wasn't supposed to be reading books like it, so once I finished, I did not pick up another Romance novel like it until I was about 17.

The romance I read after my first experience was The Black Lyon by Jude Deveraux. I fell deeply in love with the Montgomerys.

desere_steenberg said...

Hi Anna,

Your right Abby is a very wonderfull lady she is very sweet. I loved the interview it was really interesting learning more about Sarah,she does sound very sweet,nice and yes really funny which I just adore.

I hope your keyboard survived the tea !

Desere

Helen said...

Well done kim have fun with him

Whoo Hoo hiya Sarah and Anna fantastic interview loved it I am still laughing Anna a goose never LOL.

Sarah I am sooo looking forward to Juliana's story can't wait to read it I need to put an order in this week and you book will be on it.

The first historical romance I read was Sweet Savage Love by Rosemary Rogers my Mum gave it to me to read, I was about 19 then and I have never forgotten Ginny and Steve, but that was it I was hooked. Then came Johanna Lindsey, Judith McNaught Shirlee Busbee Kathleen Woodiwiss they still make my heart flutter and I still have them all oh and Samantha James.

For many years I only ever read historical but I have branched out to all the genres these days and love them but historical will always be my favourite whether regency or medieval love them.

Congrats on the release Sarah and thanks Anna for inviting Sarah back

have Fun
Helen

Jane said...

Congrats on the new release. My first romance was Julie Garwood's "The Bride" and I was hooked after that. I was also a fan of Jude Deveraux.

Maureen said...

I did read Johanna Lindsey and Judith McNaught but also Amanda Quick with her interesting and quirky heroes and heroines.

PJ said...

Hi Sarah! (waving wildly) I *adored* ELEVEN SCANDALS! What a wonderful, wonderful book!
It's my favorite of the trilogy.

I discovered romance around the age of 14. I slipped into the "adult" aisle at our local library without being caught by the eagle-eyed librarian, found Victoria Holt and Mary Stewart, and the rest, as they say, is history (after my dad had quite a lively chat with the librarian where he finally convinced her that, contrary to her opinion, his daughter was old enough to read those books!) Small towns. Gotta love them! lol!

Good thing I read your daily schedule before getting something to drink. Laughed my way through the entire list! Also, thinking it sounds way too familiar... :-)

Don't let that rooster get sunburned today, Kim! I know from experience that it makes him very cranky.

PhyllisC said...

I enjoyed your comments very much, especially how you spend your day writing those wonderful books for us. LOL Historical romances are my very favorite genre to read. I don't remember when I started reading romance but was young(er). Bertrice Small, Kathleen E. Woodiwiss, Jude Deveraux, Amanda Quick, Virginia Henley, Julie Garwood, Johanna Lindsey, Judith McNaught are some of the first authors that I read and still read, but I have added many more over the years. I love to read!

Anna Sugden said...

Welcome Sarah! Very much looking forward to your latest ... once I finish my revisions!

Hmm ... can't remember the first romance, but I read a lot of Mills & Boons. The one I remember best and which I loved was Robyn Donald's Bride at Whangatapu. I also read Denise Robins, Charlotte Lamb, Betty Neels et al. I did the whole Catherine Cookson, Georgette Heyer, Anya Seton kick too.

Then, Nora Roberts and Linda Howard hooked me into category and I was sold!

Mary Anne Landers said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gannon Carr said...

Hey, Sarah! You know how much I love your Love By Numbers series---just reviewed ELEVEN SCANDALS yesterday at The Romance Dish. Loved it!!

Oh, Judith McNaught was definitely romance crack for me. I still have all of her books on my keeper shelves. *sigh* I'll add Johanna Lindsey, Kathleen Woodiwiss, and Bertrice Small. Love me some big, bold, epic historical romance!

Mary Anne Landers said...

Thank you for the interview, Sarah and Anna.

My first romance novel was a Harlequin titled "A Kiss for Apollo" by Janice Gray. I read it in 1977, the year after it was published. I got into reading romances for two reasons.

One, it was an alternative to the heavy, preachy, reader-unfriendly, author-centric modern literature I'd been struggling through as an English major in college. Two, it provided a safe, fun, exciting way for a reader like me to experience romance. Shucks, for most of my adult life it's been my ONLY way to experience it.

During the late seventies and early eighties, I cut my teeth mostly on contemporary romances. Historical romances---bodice-rippers, as they were notoriously called---didn't appeal to me. There was hardly any fantasy/sci-fi romance.

But quite a few contemporaries ended up on my keepers shelf, and are still there. I discovered that certain publishers appealed to me.

Richard Gallen, an imprint of Pocket Books/Simon and Shuster, was and remains at the top of my list. Its best contemporary romances represent my ideal of the subgenre. The handful of historicals from this period that I enjoyed came mostly from this publisher. I wonder why it didn't last more than a few years.

Another winner was Magnum Books, which published American reprints of titles in the UK series, Woman's Weekly Library. Through Magnum I discovered its source company. I knew of only one mail-order bookseller who sold WWL publications in the US. I bet I was her best customer!

There were also titles from the major US publishers destined for my keeper shelf. But unlike most romance readers, I didn't pick my reading based on author. I picked it based on theme---and still do.

For some of the intervening years, I read little if any romance. Other interests took up my free time.

Today I'm into the genre as both a reader and a writer. During the past three and a half decades, it has certainly expanded and branched out.

I can't say I care for all of its current forms. But instead of griping about that which I don't like, it's better if I praise that which I do like. And write it!

gamistress66 said...

My sister gave me Shanna by Woodiwiss to read in my early teens which hooked me for life. My early must buys included her and Lindsey (I agree the Mallory's are pretty irresistable).

Deb said...

Congratulations, Sarah, on your new release!! You are an autobuy author for me. I loved NINE RULES!

I remember the very first Harlequin I read when I was in 6th grade. It was Katrina Britt's Love's Gentle Flame. I read every single book written by Debbie Macomber, Betty Neels, and Essie Summers and still have them in a box under my bed. :)

The author that turned me onto historical romances, thanks to the owners of an indie bookstore I frequent, was Julia Quinn. I love her humor and her characters. Colin and Penelope are my favorite couple.

Kirsten said...

One day I went to the library & they had a stash of romance novels in the corner. Their policy was: Take one home - Bring one in. So I did take one home, it was an anthology. Featuring 3 western stories taking place round Christmas time. Cute picture on the cover of a rancher on horseback, dragging a tree.

Loved it! So I took it back to the pile of romance novels sitting in the corner of the library. And I selected another historical book.
This time one by Elizabeth Boyle about a girl called Emmaline. What can I say there was just, Something About Emmaline ;)

This proces went on and on & is still going on today, every week I go to that library & pick a new paperback. But they are/where not enough.

I started to look for romance novels at charity sales, thrift shops etc. They have alot of the old ones but hey, they are new to me!! And I am reading faster then ever before, unable to let a book sit on the bedside table for more than a day, two max.

It never failes to make ME happy at the ending. Every HEA makes me smile and gives me hope. Now I've read dozens of books. I spend all my money on getting more new tales that entertain.

Got a huge list of fav authors, have a nice collection of keepers that I never get rid of... I don't think I'll ever stop reading romance for it's like chocolate, highly addictive.

TerriOsburn said...

I am hearing nothing but awesome things about these books and Ms. MacLean. In fact, our own pirate captain, Hellie, raved about her on this ship earlier this week.

My gateway authors are the exact same! I credit McNaught for getting me through HS with any sort of sanity and adored the Malory family so that my daughter's middle name is Malory. Which, as you can imagine, people spell wrong all the time. *g*

I'd also have to add Jo Beverly (The Rogues!), LaVyrle Spencer, Julie Garwood, and Dorothy Garlock.

TerriOsburn said...

I can't believe I forgot to add Kathleen Woodiwiss. Still have her books though they have almost completely fallen apart. And Nan Ryan was about as hot as you could get back them. Like pages singing your fingers hot.

Chrisbails said...

I would have to say it was also Johanna Lindsey that got me hooked on the romance novel-The Malorys, but my book that made me fall in love with them was Love Only Once. I found it at the library-with recommendations from library staff. I loved it and finished what books they had there. I then went out and got most all of the books at half-price books and used bookstores. i have them all but the 2 newest ones. Can't wait for the new one called When Passion Rules. not a malory book but still i am sure just as good. she does have a couple other series that are also good.
christinebails@yahoo.com

Scorpio M. said...

My first romances were from the YA Sweet Dreams line. I then moved onto the adult romances and read every book by McNaught, Amanda Quick, JAK but I consider Jo Goodman the author that "hooked" me. Her Dennehy Sisters series is on my keeper shelf.

I can hardly wait to read Eleven Scandals...I've read all the fab reviews! Thank you. :)

hrdwrkdmom aka Dianna said...

I grew up reading Kathleen Woodiwiss, branched out into Victoria Alexander, Barbara Cartland, Georgette Heyer. My very first romance was the Flame and the Flower if memory serves. There are so many favs now (waves at Banditas in lair) I have to keep spreadsheets of their books and what I have read. (Note to self, update spreadsheets). I depend on the Bandits and the Dishes to keep me updated on what is coming out. I have been reading your books from the beginning and after your mention of the new series can't wait for that one now.

Jenn3128 said...

My grandparents took me on a road trip when I was 15. On that trip grandma introduced me to Danielle Steel & Beatrice Small. I think she loved having someone to talk to about her books. I've been hooked ever since.

Avery Aames said...

4 books in one year? You must be hyperventilating. Great story about how you discovered romance! Danielle Steele is a name that comes to me. But then I also loved "literary" books like Rebecca and Gone With the Wind and...ah, reading. I adore reading.

~Avery AveryAames.com

BJ said...

OK...this is kind of sad....it all started with a writer who wrote these books that were anything but romance....LOL
R.L. Stine!!!!!!
Well what can I say I loved horror when I was younger and some of his stories did have a little romance in them :0) He had this series called Fear Street...I owned every one of them!!!
So, you all already know I'm far from normal and frankly I think you would be calling a medic if I posted something even closed to it on here :0)
I have grown though...I have moved on to various authors I truly enjoy (You know the Bandits!!!). Although...I still have a few romantic authors to fill my need for the Horror Romance...LOL
I will have to check out your books Sarah they do look interesting....and here I thought I was the only one who Stalked Anna.....LOL

Sarah MacLean said...

Oh my goodness! So many comments already! First, thank you thank you Anna and the rest of the Banditas for having me!

@Kim - I love that you were living near a castle in the Netherlands when you started! Perfect! And perfect to begin with the fabulous Cathy Maxwell!

@Sheree - Can't go wrong with Jenny Crusie!

@Kati - Thanks so much! I'm so happy you liked LBNs! And yeah...pirate lords will do, thank you very much.

@Linda - I had one of those older sisters myself! I would sneak the romances from under her bed...and I'm sure I didn't understand half of what was in them!

@Jo - I will accept Gone With the Wind happily, as Margaret Mitchell and I went to the same college, and I like to think it was the air there that inspired us both to romance!

CrystalGB said...

Hi Sarah. Your books sound wonderful. The authors that got me hooked on romance were Kathleen Woodiwiss, Jude Devereux, and Judith McNaught.

cheryl c said...

My love of romance books started about 25 years ago. The first book was THE PRIDE OF HANNAH WADE by Janet Dailey.

Sarah MacLean said...

@lindsey - I loved those book sales at the salvation army, the library, thrift stores...and is anyone here from the northeast? How about Annie's Book Stop?

Hi Danielle! - Oh, those Babysitters Club books were so awesome!!! I loved the Summer ones! Yes! Excellent choice! Also...Sweet Valley High!

@barb - Who can forget the Bridgertons?

@Christine - I'm so happy I'm not alone with that schedule! :) And Heyer? Of course!

@krazymama - Congrats on quitting smoking! I did that myself a few years back...I know how hard it is!

@Janet -- Oh, Danielle...she was my British grandfather's dirty little secret. He LOVED her books!

@Jennifer -- NO MORE SHOPPING SITES! Can't you see I can't handle them? Judith McNaught is the best way to begin...she's a gateway drug for sure!

@Desere - LOL! I'm so happy that you saved them all up! Now that Eleven is out, I hope you'll enjoy them! xoxo

@Alyn - YES THE BLACK LYON OMG YES. My very very favorite romance of all time. The book that set the standard.

@Helen - I did love me some Rosemary Rogers back in the day, too! So shocking! So fabulous!

Sarah MacLean said...

@Jane - Oh, I loved the Bride!! Julie Garwood did sweeping romance right!

@Maureen - Sounds like we've got really similar taste!

@PJ - Thank you so much, PJ! So happy you enjoyed!! And it sounds like your dad is a fabulous man. I would very much like to have dinner with him.

@Phyllis -I've got every one of those authors on my keeper shelf, too!

@Anna - Good luck with revisions! I totally hear you--I treat myself after turning in books, too...this one will be rewarded with Anna's Midnight's Wild Passion!

@Gannon- so happy you enjoyed 11...thanks for the review! And YES...Bertrice Small! She was SO DIRTY! And I LOVED her (no surprise there!)

Sarah MacLean said...

@Mary Anne - You're so right about romance being an alternative to all that heavy literature in the "canon"...I'm thrilled you found romance!

@gamistress - oh, sigh, Shanna. Yep. That one will do it!

@Deb - Thank sos much, Deb! So happy you like the books! That box under the bed comment makes me smile...I was home at my parents' house a few months ago and found a huge box filled to the brim with all my favorite old books! It was like the Treasure of the Sierra Madre!

@Kirsten - Libraries are the best, aren't they? I can still remember where all the romances I loved were in my public library in Rhode Island! And I would just add that there's "Something About Elizabeth Boyle!"

@Terri -OMG. Middle name Malory...FABULOUS homage! Did you ever tell Johanna that? You should! I bet she'd love it!

desere_steenberg said...

Thank you Sarah if I don't win I am going to still keep them on my list to save up for and when I have the funds I ll be buying all of them at once !

Have a great day
Desere

Sarah MacLean said...

@Scorpio - Those YA romances will get you every time! And I loved the Dennehy sisters!

@Dianna - Yes. The Flame and the Flower. YES.

@Jenn - Awww...love Grandma who reads romance and shares!

@Avery - I've been wanting to reread Rebecca for months now...and you've just reminded me! I remember just ADORING it...but only once and long ago!

@BJ - LOL at RL Stine! Sadly, my books are far from Horror Romance...but I hope you like them!

Virginia said...

I will have to say it was Gone With the Wind that got me hooked on romance back in my early teen years. I read the book several times and even done a book report on it in high school.

Dtchycat said...

Georgette Heyer's April Lady. I was all of about 12 when I had pretty much read everything in the children's section of the library and ventured into the "adult" section upstairs to find books. The librarian thought this would be a good book for a girl of my age...but it wasn't really until I was like 18 and found a bag of books at a tagsale and took them home that I was addicted to them - Johanna Lindsay, Jude Deveraux, Rosemary Rogers, Cassie Edwards...

Sarah - I absolutely loved 11 Scandals. I love all the books, including the Season (secretly hoping there will be a second out of that one) but there was something special about this book. I started reading it when I got home from work at 11:30 and I was cursing you at 3 am because I was still awake and couldn't put the book down! But it was well worth missing sleep for!

fb471844-7667-11e0-8cc1-000bcdcb5194 said...

Named my second son (now 3 weeks old) Leo after the hero in Married by Morning by Lisa Kleypas. Is that hardcore or what?! And my husband would kill me if he knew that's where I got the name...

TerriOsburn said...

Sarah, I think I've let Ms. Lindsey know somewhere, but that was almost twelve years ago and right now I can't remember? Gosh, that's so sad. Getting old stinks.

Sarah MacLean said...

@Terri... I would DIE if someone named their kid after one of my characters. She must have LOVED it!

MsHellion said...

You don't know what a relief it is to see your glamorous day in the life of a romance novelist. Now I don't feel bad about mine, except mine involves more napping. Note to self: stop typing with laptop on couch, get a desk. Of course, this will involve lots of research of desks at Ashley furniture. Hmm.

First books that got me hooked on romance? LONG time ago. It was a book called First Love, Wild Love by Janelle Taylor. It was followed by a book called Autumn Dove (Sylvie Sommerville??? I don't remember the author, but book was delicious.) What followed after that was all those beautiful historicals by Jude Deveraux, Julie Garwood, Judith McNaught, and LaVryle Spencer. I write contemporary of course, but they were the ones I wanted to be like! :)

Barbara E. said...

I enjoyed the post, love your very productive day, LOL. But it must be working because there are all those lovely books for us to read. My gateway romance authors were Georgette Heyer, Johanna Lindsey and Jude Deveraux many years ago, and it's been an ongoing love affair ever since.

MsHellion said...

And to second Terri, I did rave about this book yesterday. Awesomeness! I have a copy of the 2nd and 3rd book to give away if anyone wants to up their chances by visiting the pirates blog (http://romancewritersrevenge.com) and commenting in yesterday's blog comments.

librarypat said...

Sarah, Your day sounds like mine, only I don't shop. In my case, it isn't writing but housework and sorting that doesn't get done. Amazing how a 5 minute "Let's check my email." turns into an hour or more on the internet - like now. (Gee, it's almost 1, time for lunch.)

I discovered romance while hitting the thrift stores after dropping my son off at school (high school). So I am a "late bloomer" well into my 40's by then. I had not picked up romance books before then because of the covers. Didn't want to be caught with those bodice ripper covers. I found a copy of Julie Garwood's THE PRIZE with a lovely jeweled broach cover. I liked the blurb, so bought it. After that I searched for every book she had written and have been a historical romance addict since. Yes, I do read other romance genre, but the historicals are my first love.

There are so many wonderful stories out there and such talented writers. It is really discouraging to see my TBR mountain grow so high. There really are "So many books, so little time."

Thanks for another enjoyable post.

Penfield said...

The first romances I read were by Kathleen Woodiwiss, Marsha Canham and Judith McNaught. I alos enjoyed all of Nora Roberts's early Silhouettes.

Minna said...

The very first romance book I read was a historical by Caroline Courtney. I think also Barbara Cartland was one of the first authors I read. This is mostly because my mom prefers historicals.

Karyn Gerrard said...

Hi Sarah and Anna,

Loved both your books, all the best for the releases~and well deserved for the great reviews on both~

I would have to say my first taste was as a teen, I read Catherine Cookson and Taylor Caldwell (heavy going for a teen!)

Then I didn't really drift back to romance in any way until 4 years ago, and it was Mary Balogh that hooked me. I bought some second hand Harlequin Historicals (Susan Mallery's early books for example) and I was hooked good and proper.
I haven't looked back.

Now I am about to be published myself, GAK! (ebook novella) And I continue to be influenced by every one I read. (you too, Sarah!) But esp. Anna. She really inspired me in a big way. But, she knows this!

~Cheers

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Welcome back to the Lair, Sarah! I'm so happy Fo convinced you to take time from your BUSYBUSYBUSY schedule to visit us. ;-)

Gee, you day looks a LOT like mine. So why is it *I* haven't managed to finish 4 books in such a short time?!?! Methinks you're doing a lot more writing than you are admitting.

I'm with PJ, Victoria Holt, Phyllis Whitney and Mary Stewart were my "gateway" authors. My mother read these wonderful authors, and I remember picking up her copy of "The Turquoise Mask" and being absolutely enthralled with the story. My sister wasn't too happy as I read at night with a flashlight. :-)

AC

Loucinda McGary aka Aunty Cindy said...

Terrio,
That is SOOOO KEWL that you named your daughter after Lindsey's characters. I think I've mentioned this here before, I named my son after a character in Mary Stewart's "The Moonspinners." :-)

AC

Beth Andrews said...

Congratulations on the new release, Sarah! I'm very much looking forward to reading it *g*

I read teen romances as a young teen (they were like category books, a few came out each month. I still have some *g*) but my true gateway to romance was Johanna Lindsey. The first book of hers I read was The Magic of You and I was hooked. Hooked, I tell ya!

I have a feeling those Malorys are responsible for many a reader's addiction ;-)

Janga said...

I'm another who loves the Love by Numbers books. I love them so much, in fact, that I'm keeping my fingers crossed that we haven't seen the last of these characters. I do so long to see Benedick get his HEA.

I started reading romance the summer I turned ten when my mother, tired of my complaints about being bored, let me read her books. I read Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, and stacks of Emilie Loring books that summer. I've been reading romance ever since--for more years that I'm willing to admit to.

Anna Campbell said...

Wow, there's a party going on here and I'm missing out! Paolo, one of your special margaritas, please! I need to gird my loins to read all these comments!

Anna Campbell said...

Alyn, I think Jude was the doorway for a lot of dedicated romance readers! Laughed at you being scarred for life (nearly!) with that first book!

Anna Campbell said...

Desere, I've sent Sarah a bill for a new keyboard ;-)

Anna Campbell said...

Helen, I HONK you... Oh, no, I mean I thank you!!! You started with the real classics, didn't you? When I started reading longer romances (Mum was a Mills and Boon reader so they were pretty easily available), it was Kathleen Woodiwiss and then Rosemary Rogers. I must have read Shanna about a million times - and usually in maths class!

Anna Campbell said...

Jane, another Jude convert! How wonderful! I adore her Knight in Shining Armour. I cried like a loon in that one!

Anna Campbell said...

Maureen, sounds like we shared a bookcase there at one stage. And I LOVE those Amanda Quicks - they're such fun!

Anna Campbell said...

Snort, PJ! That's OUR secret that you email me in your wee smalls too! (Why does that look like you're talking to me in your underwear?) Oh, so looking forward to Eleven Scandals. Loved the other two books! Mary Stewart and Victoria Holt were part of my early reading too. I loved Mary Stewart's sense of place - she made me want to travel. And I loved VH's villain/hero mixtures - yum!

Anna Campbell said...

Phyllis, looks like you started with the classics too. I love pretty much any genre of romance but I have to say a great historical is still my absolute favorite. I love how a great historical sweeps me away into a larger-than-life world full of glamor and danger and passion. Sigh!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, Anna, Anya Seton! I was obsessed with her books at one stage - even though they usually had tragically sad endings. I cried and cried through Katherine, although at least it had a nice ending. Remember getting a thrill in 2004 when I saw Katherine Swynford's grave at Lincoln Cathedral. Brought back all my passion for that book at the age of about 13. Loved Green Darkness too and on the same trip, I went to Ightham Mote where they discovered the girl's skeleton behind the wall and that was the inspiration for the story. Creepy stuff!

Anna Campbell said...

Gannon, I spent a really rainy holiday down at a nearby resort and all I could do was lie around the apartment and read. Yeah, like I was suffering. But I ran out of books and found Whitney My Love in a local newsagent. Never heard of the author. Never heard of the author. Wow! Read it in one gulp and then turned around and started it straightaway again. It has such amazing drive, that book!

Anna Campbell said...

Mary Anne, Mum used to buy a stack of those Women's Weekly Library anthologies for our holidays every year so I grew up on them too. I remember a particular favorite by Mary Burchell about a blind concert pianist that always had me in floods of tears! She was a marvellous writer and a true heroine (she saved a lot of Jewish musicians from the Nazis). English-published books were always a lot easier to get in Australia than American ones when I grew up.

Anna Campbell said...

Gamistress, another fan of Shanna? I was just madly in love with Ruark!!! Whadda man!!! ;-)

Anna Campbell said...

Deb, Julia's books are modern (historical!) classics, aren't they? Great choice! Glad we turned you onto historicals - come over to the dark side, young maiden!!! Bwahahahahahaha!

Anna Campbell said...

Kirsten, love your story about falling in love with romance novels! You're right - they really are like chocolate and you never get sick of them. And what's wonderful is there's always a wonderful new author coming into the genre to discover and there's still your favorites writing. Love it!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, Terri, great choices! Oh, man, high school was pretty awful anyway. If they'd taken away my romance novels (and a few of the teachers tried!), I would have thrown myself into a vat of the tapioca pudding they seemed to serve us every day!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, Terri, how did I miss Nan Ryan? Actually to my very innocent 14-year-old self KW was pretty darn hot too!

Anna Campbell said...

Chris, I remember I went on an absolute craze on the Johanna Lindseys. I used to buy half a dozen from the bookshop and take them home and just wallow in those gorgeous alpha males and feisty heroines all weekend. Must have read about 50 of them that way!

Anna Campbell said...

Scorpio, I've heard fabulous things about Jo Goodman! Must add her to the TBR pile (oh, my aching Visa Card!).

Anna Campbell said...

Dianna, speaking of my aching credit card, I think the Bandits and Dishes owe me a whole carton of aspirin! I keep coming across wonderful stories I just have to buy and read!

Anna Campbell said...

Jenn, I used to talk about the books we were reading with my mum and my grandmother too. Both wonderful women have now sadly passed away and I miss those natters big time.

Anna Campbell said...

Avery, you'll be shocked to hear this, but I've never got much past page 100 with Gone With the Wind. I did however adore Rebecca as a young teenager. I wonder now what I'd think about it - there definitely seems to be a power imbalance between Maxim and our poor nameless waif of a heroine!

Anna Campbell said...

BJ, but you're a SPECIAL stalker ;-) Hey, check out Sarah's books. They're great!

Anna Campbell said...

Sarah, we're all so excited to have you back in the lair! Thanks so much for such a fun interview. And you DO owe me a new keyboard!!!!

PJ said...

@PJ - Thank you so much, PJ! So happy you enjoyed!! And it sounds like your dad is a fabulous man. I would very much like to have dinner with him.

Sarah, he was a very special man and a natural story teller. He would have loved having dinner with you! He died seven years ago and I miss him every day but I know he's keeping the angels well entertained! ;-)

Anna Campbell said...

Sarah, you and Margaret Mitchell went to the same college? How cool is that? I lived two doors down from Evelyn Waugh's childhood home in West Hampstead when I lived in London. Didn't know it at the time - only discovered it when I was watching a show about the making of Brideshead Revisited. Made me feel kinda fated to be a writer!

PJ said...

Hellie said, It was followed by a book called Autumn Dove (Sylvie Sommerville??? I don't remember the author, but book was delicious.)

Sylvie Sommerfield and I loved her books! Devoured them like chocolate candy!

Anna Campbell said...

Crystal, looks like a lot of us started reading romance with the same books. What fun!

Anna Campbell said...

Cheryl, Janet absolutely dominated category romance here. She was SOOO popular.

Anna Campbell said...

Sarah, hope you enjoy Ranelaw and Antonia's story! I love that we've got books on the shelves in the same month. It's kinda like a club!!!

Anna Campbell said...

Sarah, speaking of Elizabeth Boyle, did you read her Mad About the Duke? I read it just after I read Nine Rules - such a session of reading bliss. It's such a fun romp! Actually she owes me a keyboard too!

Anna Campbell said...

Sarah, I always experience horror when I read one of your books...

WAIT FOR IT!

Because I'm horrified I have to wait before I can read the next one!

Bwahahahahaha! Had you there, didn't I?

Anna Campbell said...

Virginia, I think a lot of women came into romance via GWTW. My mum absolutely loved it and spent her life nagging me to read it.

Anna Campbell said...

Dtchycat, isn't it wonderful when you get a book that just WON'T let you sleep? Well, it's a pain, but it's wonderful! I'm loving everyone's stories on how they got hooked on romance!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, FBetc., I LOVE the name Leo. I actually called one of the major characters in Tempt the Devil Leo (short for Leonidas, this boy needed to be a hero although he wasn't THE hero of this story).

Anna Campbell said...

Terri, my memory isn't a steel trap anymore, either. Sad, huh? Still think it's cool about JL!

TerriOsburn said...

Sarah - Since my daughter's first name is Isabelle, we can say I named her after one of your heroines. LOL! Slightly different spelling, but since I was basing this off a future prediction, I can't be held accountable for getting the spelling wrong.

AC - Does he ever tell people that's where his name came from? I wonder if someday my child will tire of explaining, always starting with, "My mom read Romance novels..." [insert eye roll]

Anna Campbell said...

Hellie, love your early reading report. What fun! Actually delicious is a great word for how I felt about those first sexy historicals I read. I got quite addicted to them!

Anna Campbell said...

Barb, you started with the classics too. I think for a lot of Aussies, reading Georgette Heyer was a bit of a rite of passage. Mothers passed them to daughters and daughters passed them to their daughters. I remember the very groovy oldest daughter of our next-door neighbours (I was in awe of her stylishness when I was in primary school) had a whole bookshelf of the GHs. So they even had style approval from Linda Brodie. No greater accolade was available to mankind at the time as far as I was concerned! ;-)

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, visit the pirate blog, gals! I loves me the pirate blog! And they've got MacLean booty to give away! It's enough to make me trade in my cutlass with excitement!

Anna Campbell said...

Pat, I definitely hear you on so many books, so little time. And then there are so many NEW wonderful books to buy as well. I can see the newspaper headline - local author buried under paperback avalanche. Doctors hold out no hope for her recovery until she reads her way out!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, Penfield, I love Marsha Canham. She did a wonderful take on the Robin Hood legends in a medieval trilogy some years ago that I just adored. Yum, yum, yum! I liked the way her books had a lot of adventure in them along with the romance - they were something a little bit out of the ordinary, weren't they?

Anna Campbell said...

Minna, can't go wrong starting with a good historical. Hmm, now I review my own past and I wonder if I can say that with any certainty...

TerriOsburn said...

For the Revenge Pirate blog, it's the Monday blog you need to read and comment in order to win one of Sarah's books. LOL! I'd love for everyone to comment on yesterdays, as that was mine, but I was being all whiney and serious and what fun is that?

May said...

It was Julia Quinn 's splendid. I love reading it and start reading all the romances that I could find. I think I must have read a book a day!

Gannon Carr said...

But I ran out of books and found Whitney My Love in a local newsagent. Never heard of the author. Never heard of the author. Wow! Read it in one gulp and then turned around and started it straightaway again.

Anna, I have two copies of Whitney, My Love. The first is very well loved---you could say it's a bit worn and tattered. The second is the hardback that was released several years ago. Judith McNaught wrote some wonderful historicals. You must seek them out, Anna, and take a few days and indulge in some marathon reading. *g*

Anna Campbell said...

Aww, Karyn, you're too kind! Thank you for saying such lovely things. And best of luck with your book!!!!! And thank you for saying you loved both my book and Sarah's. Seriously, I was tickled pink (as pink as Sarah's cover!) when I realized we were out in the same month!

Gannon Carr said...

And YES...Bertrice Small! She was SO DIRTY! And I LOVED her (no surprise there!)

Exactly, Sarah!

Anna Campbell said...

Aunty Cindy, there really was a golden age of romantic suspense when we started reading, wasn't there? Mary Stewart and Victoria Holt were enormously popular here. Phyllis Whitney not so much although I think you could find her books. We had a very British-centric culture back then.

Anna Campbell said...

AC, I didn't know about your son and the Moonspinners! How cool!

Anna Campbell said...

Beth, those Johanna Lindseys really are romance crack, aren't they? She's such a mistress of the classic format!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Beth, speaking of great books - I can't wait to read your PRODIGAL SON out this month. May is SUCH a huge month for my poor credit card!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Janga, my mum gave me my first romance (I was eight) because she wanted a bit of peace from me being on her hammer on all the time! Sounds like we have a lot in common there too! I'm so glad she got me hooked on these fabulous stories!

Anna Campbell said...

PJ, when I think of my dad it's in a fairly similar vein - lucky angels!

Anna Campbell said...

Terri, I think naming your daughter Malory is incredibly cool! No eye rolling here!

Anna Campbell said...

Terri, sometimes the wine has to come home to roost (hmm, back to geese again). Oh, sorry, the WHINE!!!

Anna Campbell said...

May, I remember when I discovered the specialist romance bookshop in Sydney (this was before it was easy to order off the Net) and I spent hundreds of dollars in my first visit. I curled up and just read those books like eating chocolate. Yum!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, Gannon, I didn't finish that story - then bought EVERYTHING she wrote including that rare edition of her laundry list that Penguin brought out for Christmas 1988 ;-) Do you remember the fishing scene from Something Wonderful? Sigh, sigh, sigh!

Anna Campbell said...

Snort, Gannon and Sarah, you naughty girls!

Alexis said...

Hi Sarah - So much love to have you here today. I must admit, I kept on screaming - JUST LIKE ME! Throughout the interview (grin). I had one snarky reviewer chastize my book because it reminded her of Whitney, My Love - which I loved. It's one of the few times I was very proud of a bad review (grin). Judith McNaughten, Johanna Lindsey, Julies Garwood...Hmm...I'm seeing a pattern here. I think I need to change my name to Jonna MacMeans!

Anna Campbell said...

Snort, Alexis, don't you just love those bad reviews that are SOOOO good. There's a one-star Amazon review for Untouched which is headed, This Book is Nothing but SEX!!!! Hmm, suspect that sold me quite a few copies!

catslady said...

Oh, I've heard such good things about your books. And I love your sense of humor. Do they need to be read in order? The books that really got me hooked were Kathleen Woodiwiss - The Flame and the Flower and The Wolf and the Dove and Shanna. Before that I had read the gothics and Harold Robins and Rosemary Rogers but it was Kathleen's books that really got to me.

Anna Campbell said...

Catslady, I often credit the fact that I've got a job as a writer today to Rosemary R and Kathleen W. They really set the genre off with a bang! No pun intended, snicker!

Di R said...

I can't wait to dive into Sarah's books. They are waiting for me to reach my writing goal.

I used to read ALL the time. Then I read a YA historical and the heroine chose the wrong guy. It was my first wallbanger. Then I red a 'classic' for school that I hated. So I stopped reading.

Then while on a car trip, apparently I was being a pest, becuase my mom stopped at a gas station bought a Christmas anthology and told me to read it.

I wondered if she realized it had sex in it, but I didn't tell her. I was hooked from then on.

Judith McNaught, Kathleen Woodiwiss, Marsha Canham, Catherine Coulter...

Di

kaisquared said...

I started out with Gothics like Nine Coaches Waiting by Mary Stewart, slowly worked my way though historicals to contemporaries and then futuristic and finally paranormal romance. I continue to read many genres, but always enjoy Regencies.

And I just had to mention that my husband was reading this blog over my shoulder and remarked that Sarah and I must be graduates of the same cooking school, and the same honors course on Internet Procrastination.

Anna Campbell said...

Ha ha, Di, had to laugh at your mum wondering if there was sex in that story! So glad you came back to the genre!

Anna Campbell said...

Kai, laughed at you and Sarah sharing an alma mater! Or perhaps alma MARTYR!!! What an interesting journey you had - I too started with the gothics and have moved on through all the genres since. These days, I read pretty much anything if it engages my attentions.

Megan said...
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Megan said...

This was great!

Anna Campbell said...

So glad you enjoyed it, Megan! Thanks for swinging by.

Betty said...

I started reading romance with Barbara Carland andGeorgette Heyer, then Harlequins, but quickly moved on to longer and more involved stories. Johanna Lindsay was one of my favs!

sarah t. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Pissenlit said...

Congrats on the new release, Sarah! Snarf! Your typical day sounds very much like what happened whenever I was faced with having to write an essay in university, right down to the bit about sales at Nine West!

Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice got me hooked on reading romance. Right after I reread it a few extra times, I figured I should probably then move on to other books. :D

sarah t. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sarah t. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sarah MacLean said...

@Alexis - Uhm...is being like Judith McNaught a BAD thing? #reviewerfail

@Anna - I've gotten those "TOO MUCH SEX" reviews, too. They make me positively giddy. ;)

@DiR - I love your stories about reading too many books that ended wrong! That's exactly why I love romances!

@Kai - Happy to meet you, procrastination sistah!

Sarah MacLean said...

@Loucinda - You know, Victoria Holt is someone I missed when I was young. I've since done some catching up...but I've no idea HOW I missed her!

@Beth - No kidding! I think the Malorys launched a few generations of romance readers!

@Janga - Thank so much, Janga!! You're not the only one who wants Benedick's story...I promise that when his heroine shows her face, I'll write it!

Sarah MacLean said...

@Anna - I know I'm going to love this book. LOVE IT. Did you see that Eloisa James and I talked about you in our Romance Live livestream? (Because you're AWESOME)

And I love Elizabeth Boyle...every single one of her books. :)

I'm so happy that we're pub sisters! You know I squeed when I heard that!

Sarah MacLean said...

@DTchycat - I'm so happy that you enjoyed Eleven! I would apologize for keeping you up, but I'm not really sad about it. ;)

@MsHellion - I'm happy that my embarrassing schedule makes you feel better...I wish I was one of those hyper organized people, don't you? And thank you so so much for your FABULOUS review of Eleven!I'm so happy you enjoyed! xox

@Barbara - looks like you and I had the same gateway drugs!

@librarypat - glad to know I'm not alone! The Prize is FABULOUS...great choice!

@Penfield - Oh, those early Noras are fabulous!!

@Minna - It's funny how historical readers usually have someone who pointed them out to us--mom, grandma, sister, etc.--right?

@Karyn - Congrats on your being published Karyn!! What a huge event! (Savor every moment!)

lindsey hutchison said...

lol it sure is a inflation for me i have over 1000 books now and i cant seem to part with any of them. though when i do make those trips still sometimes i see doubles or triples of a book once home and give them to a friend. but i sure love looking at all my pretty books out on display.

and im from Bay Area California never heard of Annie book shop whats it like?

Anna Campbell said...

Betty, JL is getting a lotta love in this blog! Great to see!

Anna Campbell said...

Hey, Sarah, saw you made the New York Times list! Huzzah! Congratulations!

Anna Campbell said...

Pissenlit, I couldn't tell you how many time I've read P&P. Love it every time - and find something different in it every time! I guess that's the definition of a classic!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, NOOOOO! Where do I go to see fabulous you and legendary Eloisa mentioning my worthless self (hmm, seem to be channeling Uriah Heep here!)? Seriously, I'd love to see it!

Anna Campbell said...

Lindsey, your place sounds like mine. People walk in and if they're readers, you can see they think they're in heaven, and if they're not, their faces pale with absolute horror. Books EVERYWHERE!

lindsey hutchison said...

hahaha exactly but im particularly fond of my books i dont crease the binds unless i read them a gazillion times which happens to most. and i only let maybe two people borrow a book. cause i know i can hunt them down and get them back but i make sure they know the rules a book care.

Anna Campbell said...

Lindsey, I've learned to be very careful who I lend my books to. I've lost too many great books - and people don't seem to be aware that when I say I want a book back, I WANT THE BOOK BACK!!!! Grrrr!

Anna Campbell said...

Sarah, thank you for a fabulous day's blogging. You're such fun - and congratulations again on the NYT listing.

Thank you to everyone who commented and made it such a great day in the lair!

Everyone, don't forget to check back to see who won the fabulous three book prize of ALL the Love by Numbers books. Wow! Good luck!

Laurie G said...

My initial authors were: Laurie McBain, Sandra Brown, Nora Roberts, Catherine Coulter, Debbie Macomber, Elizabeth Lowell, Diana Palmer, Jude Devereaux and Judith McNaught.

Tona said...

Hello ladies! I have really enjoyed this interview, laughing by myself like a lunatic LOL
I can see now that I'm not alone when it comes to my favorite writers, Johanna Lindsey, love those Malorys :) Judith McNaught were also some of my first favorite authors, I have to add to them Rosemary Rogers, Bertrice Small, and my very first ones were Corin Tellado (I believe she was from Spain or Cuba) and later on when I was a teen I discovered Barbara Cartland. Then I came to this country and I had read all the books in Spanish I had brought with me and didn't know what else to read when I received a book club offer, you know, the buy 5 for .99 cents kind of deal? Well, I was reading some very interesting books about spirituality and natural medicine but then one day I discovered the romance novels, Johanna Lindsey, Judith McNaught, Beartice Small.. and there was no stopping me any more, but they had to be historical, some how I can't read contemporary ones, although the ones I used to read when I was really young by Corin Tellado were contemporary but from the 50's I guess they were historical to me LOL.
I used to spend hours at Waldenbooks in Lincoln RI with my daughter going thru the books and buying tons of them. My daughter learned that I would never say no to her if she asked me for a book, which BTW, it was the same way with my parents. My dad was a professor and always told us that reading was better than to watch TV. We had a library at our home, something that was not common at that time in Colombia, but was very normal in my family :)
But going back to my romance reading, I have to tell you that by reading all these novels I learned more English, I had studied the language in Colombia and when I came here I was fluent in about 3 months but by reading these books my reading skills went up the roof. I went to CCRI to take my test to get back to school a few years ago and the woman that checked my results said "Oh boy, but you can read!" my score was really high. Before that I had taken another test with the state and I got the top score. So when I find people trying to put these type of books down I always tell them how well educated are all these women that write them and how they do their research before the write.
I want to say thanks to you Sarah because of you I found Anna and I found you because Julia Quinn and Eloisa James recommended you. I figure that if they said you were good you really must be and on top of everything you are from my little Rhody! I'm looking forward to meeting you this coming Friday.
Thanks to both for giving me such great hours of entertainment and for making it easy for your readers to talk to you. God Bless you both.

Tona said...

BTW Sarah, since my first language isn't English I do understand Juliana very well, and I can see how my daughter must laugh at some of the things I say LOL.

Anna Campbell said...

Laurie, great list! I've loved hearing about everyone's gateways to romance!

Anna Campbell said...

Delia, love your post about your reading history. And I BET these books improved your reading - I found if I wanted to read something when I was learning French and German, I'd make the trouble if it was something I was interested in. Actually I credit these books for really helping my general knowledge - you pick up so many interesting facts reading romance! And so glad you found me - and Sarah!!!!

LilMissMolly said...

Linda Howard, Julie Garwood and Catherine Coulter. All of them had historical romance novels that just sucked me in!

Anna Campbell said...

Ooh, LilMissMolly, I LOVE Linda Howard. I won an anthology of some of her early suspense novels at the ARRA conference in Bondi a couple of weeks ago and it was fab!

Marie said...

See what happens when you don't have internet for a coouple days? You miss WONDERFUL contests! I'm so sad, :(

Anna Campbell said...

Aww, Marie, so sorry. But we have wonderful contests here ALL the time - you'll just have to come back ;-)

Laurie G said...

The first authors I read were Laurie McBain, Joan Honl,Catherine Coulter, Linda Lael Miller, LaVyrle Spencer, Nora Roberts, Sandra Brown, Diana Palmer, Elizabeth Lowell, Betty Neels, Penny Jordon, Margaret Way, Jude Devereaux, Joanna Lindsay, Judith McNaught, Jayne Ann Krenz and Barbara Delinsky.

lynxxmarie said...

Two books that got me hooked on romance are Day Taylor's "The Black Swan" and Janelle Taylor's "First Love Wild Love" and I've been hooked ever since!

I will be looking for your "Love By Numbers" trilogy. From your post and the chatter I've heard, they sound like they are going to be some "can't put down" reading!! :-)

Anna Campbell said...

Laurie, looks like you and I had very similar reading lists when we started with romance!

Anna Campbell said...

Lynx, have fun with Sarah's books and thanks for swinging by!