Beyond, of course, the fact that I loved The Real Deal. (And please keep in mind that I’m not putting forth anything as “right”, just as my thoughts.)
Worst romances don’t get remembered. Out of sight, out of mind. Those puppies are packed off to the UBS or Goodwill at the first opportunity, perhaps unfinished. They’re dismissed. So when it comes time to declare a Worst Romance for the entire previous year, the brain flails around, trying to remember.
In AAR’s first set of interim results, on January 26, they list Forced Mate and One Dark Night.
The hilarious and snarky Smart Bitches Who Love Trashy Novels put up their review of The Real Deal on Feb 7.
In the Feb 15 interim results, the Worst Romance category looked like this:
One Dark Night
The Real Deal
When Bruce Met Cyn
I haven’t read Forced Mate, but everything I’ve seen about it gives me the impression I’m only missing confusion and a good laugh. My neighbor raved about One Dark Night, but it’s still in my TBR pile. (I’ll go out on a limb here and say I wouldn’t be surprised if there are people out there who would like to slap the arguably most well-known ebook author back into ‘her place’. And don’t try to tell me there aren’t people out there with that much disrespect for erotic e-romances.)
As far as When Bruce Met Cyn, I totally disregard this book’s presence in the category. #1–the heroine’s a former hooker and the hero’s a preacher. Tell me THAT won’t push some fanatical buttons. #2–I see two groups of people online when it comes to Lori: those who are ardent fans and supporters, and those who at any given opportunity and for little or no reason, will launch into a flame frenzy that will singe the eyebrows off any surfer unfortunate enough to stumble onto the discussion. The online community seems to have less objectivity about her books than any others.
So, The Real Deal, which is a book being talked about a lot at the time, beats Forced Mate, which from everything I’ve seen is just a bad book, by ONE vote? Please.
Now, the Best Romances stay with you. Chances are, from where you’re sitting right now, you can actually physically see your favorite romances from 2004. They’re right there on your keeper shelf, aren’t they? You scan the spines, smiling a little as you remember your favorite parts. Then you agonizingly narrow it down to one book and plunk that title in.
I just can’t buy into the Worst Romance category. I think it has zero credibility, and the only thing it accomplishes is hurting the author. Probably in sales, but most importantly in her heart. I can’t imagine how Lucy Monroe feels sitting down to write these last couple of days. I know authors need a thick skin, but AAR’s pretty well-known and important in the scheme of things.
I think the worst-of’s get hashed around on the AAR message boards enough throughout the year. Why not simply recognize the best-of’s at the end of the year?