POLL: Do You Guilty Pleasure Read?

People, my interest feels so aroused this week with a need to blog (I’ll take it, the interest was certainly, er, waning.)! Aroused – a toss to the ‘ole romance reading I used to do more often. Just kidding. Well, maybe I’m serious. Anyway.

Know what I did last night? You don’t? That’s good. It keeps the police away. Well, lemme tell you: I went searching specifically for an old Johanna Lindsey guilty pleasure chortle I-Do-Declare you rat bastard explicative read on my trusty shelves. And that, my friends, is Secret Fire.

You know, Secret Fire! The one where the Russian prince tells his manservant bouncer dude to Bring me a woman, I must needs screw! And so it was and they kidnapped unto themselves a young English miss, drugged her for You Know What, totally didn’t beliefs she was nobility (cuz the working class, the only service they provide is kidnapping stock, ya know – and they deserves it), caned her – yeah – mother f-ing CANED her, drugged her again for More You Know What and then she and her prince lived Happily Ever After. Also, at times, the prince was SAWY.

YEAH. It’s awesome. It’s such a great guilty pleasure read. I glanced through it from beginning to end and practiced all my gasps of disbelief and I Do Declares and outraged eyebrows and Hahas STOOPID PRINCE-Y, take that, she showed you with her silence and easy capitulating and free evaluation of your finances! For this you must gives her pleasures. Wink.

What guilty pleasure read is on your shelf? I looked for my other Johanna Lindsey guilty pleasure reads, specifically that one about that Viking who kidnaps….OH. I see the pattern now. But back to you: What are your guilty pleasure reads? It doesn’t have to be romance. Just fess up. There’s even a NEW POLL over yonder on the upper right! *clappity*

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  1. This is a LOVELY post. I laughed so hard. About a year ago I started reading romance, too. Everyone in my family reads a lot, but they, of course, read the “good” books. Books that challenge your mind and further your understanding. And I, the black sheep, read stuff about elves, and dwarves and wizards etc. (and it’s not only Tolkien or Pratchett – the shock!).
    So to read romance always felt very naughty to me. But, as Rita Mae Brown once said: “Lead me not into temptation, I can find the way myself”. And I found the way myself. I started with reading Mr. Impossible and Miss Wonderful by Loretta Chase and then Stephanie Laurens “Cynster”-series and some other stuff. I regularly visit the “Smart Bitches” to look if they recommend more “trashy books”.
    The dark side is so much nicer. There’re not only cookies but lots of guilty pleasure ^^

    • Oh man, I love that quote! Seriously thinking about wiping off that lame tagline on my header and replacing it with that :D

  2. Oh my god. Too many to name. Personally, I’m a huge fan of old Judith McNaughts. Although I’m out and proud about them. I adore Whitney My Love, and all of her asshat heroes. They roar everything: their laughter, their orgasm, their anger. And our heroines are feisty. How do we know? They toss their hair. Like constantly. How they don’t have brain damage is a mystery.

    Which was the Johanna Lindsey where the hero (a Viking, I’m pretty sure) had a cat who farted on the heroine constantly? Do you remember that one? It had Fabio on the cover. Oh wait…that’s all of them.

    Now I feel the need to go in search of that one.

    • *Although I’m out and proud about them.*

      YES. That. You’ve got it. Be proud and loud about guilty pleasures!

      But wait, I don’t remember a cat farting on a heroine in a Johanna Lindsey Viking romance. Book, present yourself! I thought I’d read all her older stuff. Pout.

    • “Defy not the Heart” by Johanna Lindsey had the farting cat. I love this one so much that I have it in both English and Spanish. Great melodramatic translation!

    • It’s actually a good guilt! We need guilty pleasure reads. They give us that dorky reader glow. You just can’t bottle the stuff. :D

  3. LOL!!! Oh, man. Mine is not quite that bad, but still bad enough. Ever read Shirlee Busbee’s LOVERS FOREVER? Heroine has creepy cousin trying to get her to agree to marry him so he can have access to her fortune. Heroine runs away and bonks her head, conveniently getting amnesia. She then runs off to an inn where she is mistaken as the lightskirt sent from London to replace one that just left/quit/whatever. Hero shows up and demands a room and some smexy, smexy times from heroine–and when he pops her cherry, he assumes it was all a setup so she could force him to marry her and she could get her hands on his fortune. So what does he do? MAKES HER HIS MISTRESS, THAT’S WUT. Oh, and it turns out that their families have a bloody feud going back two or three generations, but he doesn’t recognize her or see a family resemblance of any kind.

    Yeah. Crazypants story is crazy. Crazy AWESOME.

    I loves me some crazy romance. I really do.


    • Jess, I have never read that particular romance title – but I just KNOW I’ve read a few like it! Ahh the good ‘ole Misunderstandings Make the Mistress storyline. :D

  4. Thea Devine. That woman is my crack. She’s written everything from historicals to contemporaries to vampires, but it’s her historicals that are my crack of choice. Especially some of her earlier works where she employs crackalicious family secret trashy nighttime soap opera plots. Her heroes are Alpha, and her heroines are, generally speaking, allowed to be just as “bad” as the heroes. Love! I have to be in the right frame of mind to read her books, so I’m still chugging through her backlist but so far my favorite has been Desired. A hero named Flint Rutledge and a heroine named Dayne? Love!

    • I don’t think I’ve ever read Thea Devine! I don’t know how I missed her while in my full-on historical phase, she was so prolific even back then.

  5. I started reading romances in the mid-80s as a 15YO girl. It seems like most of mine are “guilty pleasure reads.”

    My fave guilty pleasure: STORMFIRE by Christine Monson. Yep, he’s a right bastard to her, no question. I don’t care. I love this book. I could write essays to its awesomeness.

    And just the other day I was thinking about an old Johanna Lindsey: Heart of Thunder. Check out the blurb from Amazon. This says it all, doesn’t it?

    “No man had ever dared to force his attentions on stunning, fiery Samantha Kingsley — until Hank Chavez, the rough-hewn, insolvent outlaw, aroused the spirited hellion’s wrath…and her passion.

    Samantha vowed to slaughter the impulsive rogue…if her father didn’t do it first. For there’s only one thing Chavez wants more than the Kingley’s sprawling Mexican homestead: to ignite in Samantha’s breast…and to take the tempestuous beauty in bold, rapturous conquest.”

    Bold, rapturous conquest. *sigh* Aaah…good stuff.

    • That has got to be the best blurb EVER. I love me some bold, rapturous conquest (not to mention rough-hewn outlaws named Hank) **chuckle**

      I must read this book :)

  6. I have plenty of guilty pleasures, but I don’t know if I can think of a romance writer who counts as one. Maybe JR Ward?

    Here is my question for you: what is guilty-making about the Lindsey? That is’s a bad (in literary terms) book, or that it’s a good book with atrocious gender politics? Not challenging you, just honestly curious.

    • Jess, probably the gender politics more than anything. Also, though, guilt is tongue-in-cheek, really. I love guilty pleasure reads. ;)

  7. Ha, I never feel guilty over reading romances. Even old poliltically incorrect ones. But I did want to say that I actually love this book Secret Fire! Love it, love it. I was a Johanna Lindsey fan once-upon-a-time, but this is about the only one I’ll still read. In fact, now that you’ve reminded me, I think it’s time to read it again. It’s very overdramatic and just wrong, and I love it.

    (Currently re-reading Shanna by Woodiwiss. Should that be considered a guilty pleasure too?)

    • Jill, I’m not sure if I’ve ever Read Woodiwiss’ Shanna. Hmm.

      *It’s very overdramatic and just wrong, and I love it.*

      Haha – yes! Exactly. :D

  8. I love “Fires of Winter” too (I know it’s bad for me, but how can I resist?!) and several Woodiwiss books (including Shanna and The Flame and the Flower) and “Lace” by Shirley Conran comes to mind too. I have to laugh when Marirra lists Loretta Chase as a guilty pleasure since I categorize her among my “proud to read romance” selections (along with Kinsale and Duran).

  9. Wait, I’m getting my two Lindsey keepers mixed up! I think “Fires of Winter” was the Viking one (or one of may Viking ones), but that and “Secret Fire” are my only two Johanna Lindseys I will re-read occasionally. I also have a foray into SCIENCE FICTION romance she wrote called “Warrior’s Woman” or something of the like and I keep that mainly for evidence that it actually exists, because it is some crazy weird stuff!

    • *I keep that mainly for evidence that it actually exists*

      I know what you mean. It’s why I can’t get rid of certain books over time. Dara Joy’s Rejar and the other books in that series, for example. I was looking at those the other night, too. They’re just..bad lol! But bad enough to be good.

      Fires of Winter was the Viking one of Lindsey’s that I’d been looking for. I just know it’s around the house somewhere! Her scifi ones? You’re so right about those lol.

  10. Jaid Black books. I know they’re atrocious. Some (just a few) are even too crappy for me. The political incorrectness! The gargantuan alpha-hole heroes! The awful prose and terrifying grammar! They’re even more junk-foody than cotton candy. More like aerosol cheese……………………but soooo delicious.

  11. My first reaction was “Nah, I never feel any guilt about my taste in literature.” Then I remember the moment I realized how much I enjoyed J.R. Ward and her cadre of elite emotionally-awkward vampire he-men (oh, Zsadist, how I love thee). And Sherrilyn Kenyon’s, er, cadre of elite emotionally-awkward vampire/were/demon he-men (oh, Acheron, how I love thee). And Kresley Cole’s cadre of etc. etc. But the guilt was fleeting, as soon as I conned a few friends into reading (and loving) them, too! Perhaps guilty pleasure loves company?

    • *Perhaps guilty pleasure loves company?*

      Definitely! Guilty pleasure reads just need to be shared. I haven’t been reading the recent BDB books, but I do still like to pick up the first four from time to time. Oh, Rhage! I think he’s me fave. ;D Gotta love the beast and all.

  12. No question, Shelly Laurenston is my guilty pleasure read. She’s got wolf, lion, and wild dog shifters, a bear shifter with prehensile lips (think about it…). Her characters are so over-the-top, I just love them:

    “Look, Hillbilly, I want you. You want me. Let’s just bang this out and go on about our day.” from Here Kitty, Kitty

    • Yes! But I wouldn’t say the Laurenston books are my ‘guilty’ pleasure maybe my comfort pleasure. Her guys and girls are genuinely decent and likeable and that comforts me along with the snark.

      I think I would put Lora Leigh’s breed books into my guilty pleasure reading box. I enjoy them as high Victorian melodramas even though I am disturbed by the martyring of her heroines . Aiden’s Charity comes to mind.

      The Jaid Black Treq M’quan books for all of Joanne’s reasons are in the GPR box too.

  13. Totally. I love Fran Heckrotte, mostly. It’s still ridiculously cheesy, but it’s the best lesbian erotica I’ve been able to ever find–most reads beyond “so bad it’s good” into “just plain bad.” Sadly there’s no literature out there for those of us into the fairer side of things.

    • Oh, I forgot to mention, I got the book on Saturday. Just got a chance to finish it when I woke up this morning, soooooo good! They really do keep getting better and better!

    • Avalon, excellent! So glad you enjoyed McGuire’s book! They are so exceptional and YES, better with each one!

  14. i used to think all my romance novels were guilty pleasure reads, but now there are SO MANY GOOD ones, serioulsy smart and excellently written, that old skool ones like Secret Fire are definitely ones i still go back to for fun.

    my worst of the cheesy, horribly “wrong” old skool romances are by…
    Catherine Coulter. they are truly terrible, yet i still reread one or two of her historicals, especially medievals once a year.

  15. There’s an UF author out there, one of the first to write about vamps coming out of the closet and to have a tough-necro-heroine, who has been vilified by the fans who originaly loved her series because of the heroine’s irresistible, ehem, hooha. I must confess that I run out and buy every single one of her books in hb and love every dramatic installment. I guess she’s my guiltiest of pleasure reads.

    • Out of all your descriptive words, I think “Irresistible hooha” is what gave it away. LMAO. :D

  16. Oh, this is so wanting me to re-read some old Johanna Lindsey books. My favorites were Love Only Once, which was the first Mallory book where the hero accidentally kidnaps the wrong woman; A Gentle Feuding, where the hero … kidnaps … the heroine (named Sheena, no less). Yes, I’m sensing a theme. Oh wait! My other favorite was A Heart So Wild and there was … wait … a *little* kidnapping there. Sigh. I don’t know what this says about either me or Johanna Lindsey!

    • Cerulean, I think we’re on the same page – we want to be kidnapped! LOL!


      I didn’t realize till I did this post just how much Lindsey’s ladies are kidnapped!

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