Review: Everything I Know About Love… by Sarah Wendell

 

I was invited to review Everything I Know About Love, I Learned From Romance Novels by Sarah Wendell for the February issue of Open Letters Monthly, and I did.

PS. If you know a child who likes graphic novels, I’m giving away a copy of Lost Trail: Nine Days Alone in the Wilderness, a terrific true story about a boy who was lost on a mountain in Maine (just comment enter by Friday; US only).

 

Genre Trouble! Monday Links Post

I was away for the long weekend (and we’re still on break today at my uni), and busy last week, and so I missed lots of interesting posts. Here are some links:

Rohan Maitzen of Open Letters Monthly read two romance novels (Chase and Heyer) and … didn’t like ‘em. Then she read another one (Anyone But You, by Jennifer Crusie) and … sort of liked it. She talks about her foray into romance reading here. (I commented over there.)

Liz, inspired in part by Rohan’s experience of reading romance, wrote The Uses and Abuses of Purple.

There’s yet another article trying to figure out why romance readers have embraced e-books, this time at The Guardian. I know, I know, it’s insulting that romance readers’ embrace of e-books is such a confounding mystery. But this one is not quite as bad as most others, as it focuses on the covers, which I frankly do think are embarrassing and often misleading, regardless of the creative and other skills required to produce them.

Over at Smart Bitches Trashy Books, Sarah Wendell is talking about her company, Simple Progress, which offers “online administration, consulting and custom marketing strategies for online media, specializing in the book publishing industry.” Very long, very heated thread, required reading for anyone interested in the way blogging and the publishing industry is changing. New York Times bestselling author Jennifer Crusie responds at great length to Sarah Wendell’s critics.

The Phantom Tollbooth is one of the Books that Changed My Life. Adam Gopnik has a 50 year reflection at The New Yorker. (Thanks to Liz for the pointer)

I noticed a new bookish Twitter handle, Book Riot (introductory post here), and followed it, and they linked to a blog I had never heard of, called Dead White Guys: An Irreverent Guide to Classic Literature. Book Riot is a “new literary blog providing comprehensive, short-form and reader-friendly news and information about reading” and Dead White Guys is… well, the name makes it pretty obvious.

Speaking of new literary ventures. USA Today launched a new romance blog, Happy Ever After. I noticed on Twitter a lot of support for the idea that a major national newspaper is devoting part of its online activities exclusively to romance.

Is this the future of the bricks and mortar bookstore? Indigo books of Canada is now branding books as a lifestyle instead of a product.

We had a great long weekend, with my older son’s U12 soccer team taking the tournament title. We stayed in Old Orchard Beach at the kind of beach motel some of you may recall from your youth, with ancient but clean rooms, happy kids running up and down the walkways at all hours, and a passenger train rattling your windows at 3:00am every morning. But spending time with friends and family, and being able to get to the beach in 5 seconds makes it all worthwhile. Here’s a sunrise picture (and given that I am absolute shit with the camera, just think how lovely it actually must have been!):

Popular Romance in the New Millennium Conference: Abstracts and Bios

Registration is now open for the international conference Popular Romance in the New Millennium, hosted by McDaniel College in Westminster Maryland. The conference is hosted by Pam Regis, professor of English at McDaniel, author of A Natural History of the Romance Novel, and Vice President of the International Association for the Study of Popular Romance.

The conference is supported in part by a grant to McDaniel College from the Nora Roberts Foundation.

The conference will begin on Thursday November 10 with a keynote address by NYT best selling romance author Eloisa James, who is also Associate Professor of English at Fordham University, at 5:30 pm. followed by a dinner.

On Friday, there is a full day of panels and presentations, beginning at 9:00am, and ending with Sarah Wendell of Smart Bitches Trashy Books (6:30-7:30pm).

Yours truly will be co-presenting with a colleague in the English department. Some other Romanceland names you may know are Sarah Frantz and Angela Toscano (reviewers at Dear Author; Sarah is also the President of the IASPR), Eric Selinger, An Goris, Jayashree Kamble, Jonathan A. Allan, and Amy Burge (contributors to Teach Me Tonight; Eric is also Executive Editor of the Journal of Popular Romance Studies).

Click here to see who else is on the program, and read the abstracts.

Hope to see you there!

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