Before there were eBooks, I used to joke that my criteria for what I would read was whether or not it was printed. The dictionary, cereal boxes, newspapers or any old book I found lying around.— didn’t matter. But my ultimate favorite and long time guilty pleasure is Romance.
It started innocently enough, as these things do. I found a copy of Little Women. I stayed up all night (under the covers with a flashlight) to finish it. Before long I found Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights.
But the real infatuation began when I found some Reader’s Digest Condensed book volumes and each of them had a Victoria Holt novel. They were riveting to a junior high student!
I read them over and over. Finally one of our neighbors took pity on me and gave me Rebecca. A couple of weeks later she gave me a big box of dirty paperbacks. That was a treasure trove! I found Mary Stewart, Anya Seton, Jean Plaidy and Georgette Heyer. By the time I was in high school I had “graduated” to books I wanted to hide from Mom (like Jacqueline Suzanne). And I read a whole lot of christian fiction for her to see.
Over the years I have indulged myself in suspensful and historical romances including Regency and Western stories. I have consumed chick lit, especially the British kind, since even before there was chick lit. And have recently started reading “hen lit” --- chick lit for us aging boomers.
I have taken alot of ribbing from my family and friends over the years about my Plebian taste in reading material. I won't apologize for what I like! And I point out to them that they watch trashy TV to escape. I read.
This week I am armed with numbers since I came across these statistics about last year's book sales numbers. I will point out the them that Romance:
- outsold every market category with the exception of religion/inspirational
- represents 26.4% of all books sold
- generated $1.37 Billion in sales Compare that to sci-fi/fantasy ($495 million), literary fiction ($448 million), and mysteries ($422 million)?
In case you're wondering about my weekend plans; here they are:
- Browse the eBooks About Romance Store to find the perfect book
- Buy it and get it downloaded on my eReader
- Settle down in my favorite armchair with a little food (preferably chocolate) and a box of tissues (the good ones make you cry at the end)
- Ignore the TV and the rest of the family
- Have a wonderful mini-vacation in a far away place where everything works out perfectly!