It’s Not A Luxury, It’s A Necessity

And now, some GOOD news:

According to the New York Times, sales of romance novels are outselling other categories and are, in fact, keeping the publishing market somewhat stable even in these difficult economic times. The romance category was up 7 percent after holding fairly steady for the previous four years.

The New York Times observes, “Romance readers are considered among the most loyal fans, sticking to a series or an author once they have grown attached to one. ‘It’s a very dedicated audience who doesn’t see it as a luxury as much as a necessity,’ said Liate Stehlik, publisher of William Morrow and Avon, imprints of HarperCollins Publishers.”

Instead of the lipstick index, then, should we be keeping track of the romance novel index?

For my part, I came into a few extra bucks (no thanks to the IRS!), and immediately bought Amanda and Diane (and Deb‘s) anthology, Lilith Saintcrow‘s The Demon Librarian, Alisa Sheckley‘s The Better To Hold You and Elizabeth Hoyt‘s To Beguile A Beast. Plus I’m already waiting for Carolyn Jewel‘s My Forbidden Desire, Anne Stuart‘s Silver Falls and J.R. Ward‘s Lover Avenged.

How about you? What books are you treating yourself to while you’re scrimping on everything else?


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Deb Marlowe
13 years ago

Thanks Megan! I hope you love those scandalous Fitzmannings!

Oh, you’ve listed some good “I gotta have its”

I’m also looking forward to seeing the last two books in Sabrina Jeffries’ School for Heiresses series!

Megan Frampton
13 years ago

I didn’t know about Sabrina’s books! She’s too darn prolific. Gonna put those on the list, too, Deb.


13 years ago

Kathryne Kennedy’s Enchanting the Beast arrived via UPS, today, and I’ve already started it. The Fitzmanning Miscellany were very enjoyable! So many books, so little time. 🙂

Louisa Cornell
13 years ago

I never scrimp on books! I will eat cheese sandwiches and drink tapwater before I will scrimp on books. In fact I frequently HAVE eaten cheese sandwiches to be able to feed my addiction to romance. Food for the soul is far more important than luxuries for the body to me. When my husband died and I was working three jobs to pay off the bills and keep my head above water romance novels were my ONLY luxury. They were cheaper than a shrink and more effective than any anti-depressant. All of you wonderful published romance writers saved my life in those days – literally.

Let me see. Yesterday’s haul included Donna MacMeans The Seduction of a Duke – Sins of a Wicked Duke by Sophie Jordan – Tempted at Midnight by Jacquie D’Alessandro – Highland Scoundrel by Monica McCarty and Stephanie Bond’s 4 Bodies and a Funeral.

Gotta haves? Anything by the Riskies, of course!

13 years ago

If I get my book reviews done this weekend, I’m treating myself to a couple of biggies: THE MAMMOTH BOOK OF PARANORMAL ROMANCE and BEYOND HEAVING BOSOMS. I only wish Kelley Armstrong’s follow-up to THE SUMMONING (which is called THE AWAKENING) was already out on the shelves!

Jane George
13 years ago

I just bought Melissa Marr’s Wicked Lovely. I think it won the 2008 YA Rita. I’m not that far into it and I’m really enjoying her writing style.

Next on the list are Jo Beverley’s new one and then in May Tate Hallaway’s Dead If I Do comes out. Her books are a hoot and perfect tubtime reading.

I have had to be more frugal out of necessity now that I’m a stay at home bon bon eater, but I still buy books here and there.

Janet Mullany
13 years ago

I’m hitting the Oxfam book shop in Reading this afternoon–I’ve got some great buys there in the past.

Elizabeth Rolls
13 years ago

I have to take my elder son to a soccer camp at the crack of dawn Monday morning. On the return journey younger son and I are planning a raid on Borders and a couple of USBs. That said I actually have more than enough books in my pile. Right now I’m re-reading Alan Garner’s The Owl Service. This is one that creeped me out severely when I read it as a child. It’s so long since I read it that it feels completely unfamiliar. All I remember from when I was 10 is the building fear as the book progressed.
I agree that books are in the necessity category. I really don’t buy clothes much, but books now . . . there’s such thing as walking into a bookshop and only buying one. Doesn’t happen.

sandy l
13 years ago

I’m afraid that I don’t hold back when it comes to books. As we don’t go to movies or rarely eat out, I only feel marginally guilty.

I am waiting for the King’s next Mary Russell/Sherlock Holmes book, which releases in two weeks.

A friend and I are hitting a major book sale (AAUW) on Wednesday. I usually find something that I didn’t know I really wanted. Last year it was Anya Seton’s The Winthrop Woman.

Louisa Cornell
13 years ago

Don’t gloat, Janet ! The Oxfam in Reading ! Sigh!

13 years ago

I seem to be buying more books (onky paperbacks) much to my chargin. I scrimp on everything else (clothes, junk food). I ell myself I’m going to cut back on books but I always tell myself it’s just one.
i enter blog and author contests, I shop eharlequin.com on free shipping days any size order. (usually around a holiday) http://www.discount.com (free shipping on any size order-limit it to books before you hit search) and http://www.1stchoiceusedbooks.com for used books before I check Amazon.com (although Amazon does plenty of my business) My TBR is huge and I use the library for trade size books and hardcovers too. It’s a sickness.

Elizabeth Kerri Mahon
13 years ago

Marley Gibson’s Ghost Huntress, Susan Holloway Scott’s book on Lousie de Keroualle, and so many research books that I can’t even begin to list, as well as Stephen Fry’s America and the DVD.

Diane Gaston
13 years ago

I’m just back from Washington (DC) Romance Writers Retreat and there were lots of free books in the goody bags this year. I’ll give you a list tomorrow.


Thank goodness for the public library – that certainly keeps costs down; but I simply MUST have every new Lois McMaster Bujold novel in hardcover! The most recent was the final volume in her romance/fantasy quarter, the Sharing Knife.

Megan Frampton
13 years ago

I love Bujold’s Chalion series, and the Sharing Knife, but not the Miles V. series, which I think is weird, since that is what so many people love.

It’s nice that all of us still have little luxuries.

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