I don’t generally read category romance. Not because I write it off as a genre. Like all genres, it has its problems, most of which dovetail with my reasons not to pick up a book. I do at times read non-category books which are packaged as romance (and historicals and ‘novels’ etc), especially Ibbotson and Austen and Heyer. I did spend a miserable week at boarding school laid out with a bad back (or was it after I had my wisdom teeth out) reading through the house mistress’s stash of Mills & Boons because I couldn’t concentrate on a story which took more than 50,000 words (the misery was due to lack of concentration, not what I was concetrating on). A few of the books were astonishingly well written. And the circles I swim in overlap with romance readers and writers from time to time, whose opinions I respect.
So, with that in mind, I read an email today and reacted as follows: