walkitout (walkitout) wrote,

_Beyond Heaving Bosoms_, Sarah Wendell and Candy Tan

Subtitled: The Smart Bitches' Guide to Romance Novels (kindle)

I used to read Sarah and Candy, the SBs of the subtitle, blog quite regularly. I have since been distracted by economic and political and bicycling blogs, but they have not changed.

The book is fun. They are fun. But boy, howdy, don't read this book if a little off-color language bothers you because they use it a lot. Honest, they make my lj posts sound saintly pure.

The book includes an overview of Old Skool (1970s) romances, New Skool romances and how they progressed over the intervening decades. They only very occasionally get into earlier antecedents, and they tend not to read a lot of romances without sex, so if you are inspired by inspies, again, Not Your Thing. They describe romance covers and supply a plausible reason for why they looked so amazingly bizarre for so long. They interview a guy who posed for a lot (not Fabio) and some artists and photographers.

They also include some entertainment in the form of Romance Novel synopsis mad libs, choose your own adventure, board games, etc. All very humorous. They make a few predictions about where the genre is headed.

Yes, they spend some time on Cassie Edwards. More notably, they expend an awful lot of space working through some of the rare, detailed analysis of romance novels and what's wrong with that analysis. Because beyond the whacked out sense of humor and the amazing language, Sarah and Candy are brilliant, and happy to skewer anyone out there who's being foolish.

Should you read it? Subject to the above warnings (language, sexual themes, mature content), heck yeah! Funny and enlightening and it might encourage you to give another genre a try -- or explore another corner of the one you love.
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