Monday, August 11, 2014

Do You Remember Your First?

It's August, which means in my house we're doing a clean sweep. Bags of clothes, toys and books are taken to St.Vincent's and for a few short days I have a tidy house. As I rearrange my bookcase, I see them. They look exactly the same as when I first read them long ago. When I was a young teen, I had an entire wall of the slim, red books. A six-foot tall, four-foot wide bookshelf of Harlequin Temptations, Blazes and Silhouette Desires.

The first adult romance I read was A Rose in Winter by Kathleen Woodiwiss when I was 14 years old. I read the entire book in two days after school and I remember thinking, "Ah, that's how it works." Oh, Christopher Seton. How I loved you. But alas, the book did not belong to me and I had to return it to my friend Rosie. Total bummer. But I was hooked, and soon I was reading every romance I could get my hands on. Those little red Harlequins were my drug of choice. $2.99 and twelve new stories every month. I could read one a day, and I looked forward to every trip to the grocery store. I still can't believe my mother bought them for me.

I did read some of the Presents, Intrigues, Historicals and Super Romances, but the Blazes and Desires were my favorite. And then came the Silhouette Shadows. Twilight Phantasies by Maggie Shayne was my first vampire novel. (Yeah, I missed the entire Anne Rice craze) Oh. My. God. I read that book at least twenty times. While I can't remember names, I can still see scenes in my mind. The dungeon. The love scenes before the fireplace... sigh... Now this was before paranormal was paranormal, and I didn't know these types of book existed. My world was rocked. This was my genre.

I lost the first book,
but I still have the sequel.
But then I grew up, and the chances to read became few and far between as a life of responsibility set in. When I moved into my first apartment, the wall of books came with me. Then I moved cross-country, twice, and the number of books had to be culled, and some, unfortunately, became lost. (Twilight Phantasies- sniff) The wall is now down to eighteen and they were the only romances I had for a long time. Then I had my wisdom teeth pulled, and the opportunity to read presented itself. I know, I had to be knocked out with a mouthful of gauze in order to get some free time. I picked up one of my old red books and was swept back in time to when I spent all night in my room with my favorite heroes. That little red book started me reading again, and in turn back, to writing.

So as I sort and de-clutter, I look at those books, smile, and leave them exactly where they are.

Do you still have your first romance novel? What is it?

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  1. I remember my first erotic romance - Wicked Pleasure Lora Leigh. I have it in my nightstand. Set by itself. VERY SPECIAL!!!

  2. Oh my gosh! Looking at your pictures takes me back. I loved Starcrossed (and Moonstruck) Lovers, Twilight Phantasies and Wilde at Heart. I must have read Wilde at Heart twenty times! My first Temptation was Babycakes, and it still has a place on my shelf because of that. I used to have a real Harlequin Temptation addiction until they did away with the line. The Blaze line just isn't as good.

  3. I remember Wicked Pleasure, Jenn. :) Gosh, I can't remember my first erotica.

  4. Wilde at Heart was right around Disney's Beauty and the Beast. I loved that one too Brynn.

  5. Yes, mine was Pleasures of a Dark Prince by Kresley Cole and I've been addicted ever since:)

  6. Kresley Cole is a favorite. The first I read from her was the first forbearer/ valkarie short she had in an anthology.