Joy and Meka are some of my favorite people to follow on twitter, they both have such a exuberant love for romance and their recommendations are always aces. I was thrilled when they chose to work together on a post about Paranormal romance. I love PNR, as it was one of my entry point into the romance genre. I hope you find some amazing books on Meka and Joy's list.
Meka and Joy are so thrilled to be talking about paranormal romance (PNR) for today’s #RomBkLove, but it is so hard to know just where to start. There are so many tropes within this subgenre.
Meka: I began reading paranormal romances back when I was fairly new to reading romance regularly. I knew that I probably would like it because I enjoyed non-scary movies about paranormal things that go bump in the night…if it wasn’t too scary, of course! What is it about this genre that appeals so much?
Joy: I started reading LoveSpells which were time traveling romances and those books got me hooked on the paranormal genre. I discovered Rebecca Paisley and Laura Kinsdale. Happy me. Read many a PNR and then I picked up Christine Feehan's Dark Prince, Book One of the Dark series and went down a rabbit hole of incredible vampire stories and MC's that I totally fell in love with. The rest is history and a huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge book collection.
The World Building
Meka: Paranormal romance allows authors to have free reign, allowing them to make up fun and fantastic rules that they can either stick to or break with enough good reason. They have the distinct ability to wander within all other romance subgenres. I don’t read a lot of historicals, but if you put some paranormal elements within that genre, I will sprain my one-click finger. Hard. They can be in modern day where people either know all about the supernatural or have to hide their identity. They can be steampunk novels with airships and frightening creatures, and the brave people having to fight them. They can be set in the distant, or not so distant future. Paranormal romance novels get to be malleable in scope and setting, and the rules for one world will not be the rules for others.
Joy: Why paranormals? In mind, to be able to create an entirely new world that doesn't exist and make me believe the story that I'm reading means you have a gift. I love the romance genre with all my heart, been a reader of romance since I was 13, about 10 years ago (LMAO). But something extra special clicked with me when it came to Vampires. Authors can make up any type of creature, being, shapeshifter (my personal favorite) and wisk the reader to anywhere in this universe and beyond. I read for escapism and being able to lose myself into a world like no other gives me joy and happiness. Honestly, that is all that matters, what makes me happy is why I continue to support the romance genre.
There are so many subgenes.
Meka: Whether you are wanting to read psychics using their gifts to solve crimes, lonely creatures struggling to not give in to their inner beast before their fated mates can appear, a knight getting rescued by a group of orphans who are fighting vampires and trying to survive, faeries coming in and taking names, werewolves dealing with tough pack dynamics, vegetarian vampires, people learning to deal with burgeoning psychic abilities and those attempting to squash them, angels and vampires trying to work together, angels falling from Heaven and coming to shake up the Earth, Demons struggling to let their passions rule without harm and dealing with all of this while falling in love? Paranormal romance has you covered!
Joy: I want it all, too. Meka pretty much summed it up. And what do we all want at the end of the day. To go on that journey with the MC's, no matter where they are from and see them have their HEA or HFN.
A few months ago, there was this amazingly long roving thread on Twitter all about paranormal romance novels. I’m not entirely sure of what else happened in the world, but people were on point with recommendations. I heard that thread reached over 900 Tweets! For my part of the recs, I want to highlight both the books that got me in to PNR and the ones that keep me here, squeeing forever. Fair warning: lots of PNR are meant to be read in order but blurbs make me super weak and I will often gravitate toward the book whose blurb speaks to me the most, as opposed to reading order. Also, some of this is considered urban fantasy, but I put them under PNR due to the Happily-ever-After rule, and really, because I loved them!
Dark Melody by Christine Feehan: https://amzn.to/2KxBbal
Christine Feehan has so many books in her Carpathian series, but this was the first that I read. Watching Dayan and Corinne navigate their lives and come to love each other was a fulfilling journey. She is his life mate and Carpathians cannot see color until they meet their fated mate. If they don’t meet them, they turn in to vampires unless they seek the sun first. It’s a hard knock life!
The Missing by Shiloh Walker: https://amzn.to/2wOPmFV
Often times, I want to read about more subtle hints of paranormal in a contemporary setting and Shiloh Walker knows right where to gut punch me the most. In my feelings. I loved the couple in this book and were so glad to see them navigate through so much to get to their HEA.
The Unleashing by Shelly Laurenston: https://amzn.to/2IN8bOt
Shelly Laurenston writes the world! Seriously! Viking clans, women kicking ass and taking names after being called in to protect the artifacts of a death god, female friendships, Viking heroes, female friendships, lots of fighting, and female friendships! Did I mention female friendships?
Goddess with a Blade by Lauren Dane: https://amzn.to/2k1sb1S
Lauren Dane is an author introduced to me when I was very, very new to PNR. While I cannot highlight the first book of hers I read due to it currently being out of print, let me tell you about my BFF, Rowan Summerwaite. She is a vessel to a Celtic goddess, beats down rogue vampires, and knows who she is and why she is. She and Clive are both fantastic as individuals, but they are amazing together! This book takes place in Vegas and it is one of my favorites!
steam and sorcery by CIndy Spencer Pape: https://amzn.to/2IKx4dH
Mix a knight of an order that hunts monsters, a group of plucky street children who save his ass, and a governess who doesn’t realize she is more than what she has been taught, and what do you get? Meka’s first introduction to steampunk and the beginning of a really fantastic series.
Blood of the Maple by Dana Marie Bell https://amzn.to/2k5viGc
Dana Marie Bell writes some of my favorite books and I couldn’t go through this post without at least mentioning Bunny. You should read all about him. However, this book deals with Parker, a vegetarian vampire and Amara, a dryad. It takes everything I love about small-town romance and brings it in to a deliciously awesome PNR package which is both humorous and dark.
Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh https://amzn.to/2KybFSf
Nalini Singh writes it all! I struggled between recommending this books and her other PNR series. Slave to Sensation introduced me to a world of psychically-repressed people like Sascha, and the shifters who are fighting back against the cold Psy, in the year of 2079. While my absolute favorite is a book further in to the series, we get to learn so much that will serve as developments later on in the series. But seriously. Who can resist a woman forced to not show emotion, and the alpha wereleopard who loves her?
Prince in Leather by Holley Trent https://amzn.to/2KA3sgx
Holley Trent is amazing. I could seriously squee about her all day long. This book is the beginning of a series which somehow fits in to the other series that she writes and there are faeries! On motorcycles!! I am here for all of this. Simone and Heath are awesome and have to figure out so many things together! Both are capable, competent people and you need this in your life!
Cold Iron by D.L. Mcdermott https://amzn.to/2wOmEoA
D.L. Mcdermott’s Cold Iron series is wonderful, and in my opinion, underrated. It takes place in Boston and deals with the fae and their enemies, the druids. I loved book 1, but the rest of the series just picks up speed and hurls you through some epic plots! The world-building is layered and complex, and every character adds so much more to the series as it progresses.
Angelborn by L. Penelope https://amzn.to/2wO4pQ
I was just introduced to L. Penelope’s writing through this book and my goodness did it pack a wallop! There are angels who are half-human, half-angel, and are on the lower end of the angelic totem ple. This story has angelborn doing forbidden things, getting a second chance, and tossing the fated mate trope on its head. It is so lush and lovely. You need this!
The following Authors are what I catalogue as, I would jump in front of an oncoming car for you kinda reads / autobuys / anxiously await their next book. So much so that for one author mentioned below, I was so excited to see her again, I actually bit her (I WOULDN'T SUGGEST THIS TO ANYONE), when I saw her at RT in Houston one year. Not her book, but her. Yes, her. Lets just say that I say my life flash before my very eyes. Thank god we were friends by that point. HAAAAAA.
Shelly Laurenston: I had the luck and priviledge to beta read a book ohhh so many years ago. We had a mutual friend who contacted me and asked if I would read a book by an unknown author friend of hers. I said sure! That book was Pack Challenge and that Author was, Shelly Laurenston aka G.A. Aiken. That's right folks, that is how Shelly and I "met". I had no contact with her until AFTER I read one of the most hilarious books I had ever read. Not only was Pack Challenge an awesome story with a mewl worthy Hero but the Heroine was a woman of color. Holy cow, I said, wowza! At that point in time, the only woc in paranormal that I had read was the Heroine of Stephanie Burke's, Keeper of The Flame. I contacted said friend and said, where are the rest of her books. I couldn't find a website, nothing! I was stunned to learn that Pack Challenge was her first book and it was unpublished to boot. I was astonished, not only was PC unique, it had an unrepentant, true to herself, can fight for herself, Heroine, said Heroine had a group of ride or die friends and the Hero loved all that she was. No tryng to change each other but learning to love the person they met, how refreshing.
Shelly's shifters are of all races and creeds and that's the beauty of a Laurenston or Aiken book. The characters and world building flows. Nothing feels forced. Her Heroines are tough yet love with everything they have and will protect family and friends to the ends of the earth. Her Heroes are Alpha yet they love and respect their Heroines and all the nuttiness that comes with being with a non conformational woman. Her Heroines go by the beat of their own drum. Shelly also writes fierce Dragons under the name of G.A. Aiken. Whether it be under Shelly Laurenston, writing witches, lions, tigers, bears, honey badgers and so much more or her dragons, as G.A. Aiken, you will not only get extraordinary worldbuilding but characters that will have you howling, rotflyao for days after. The following are all of her books as I love them all!
Series: Long Island Coven https://bit.ly/2kaLRkh
Series: Pride https://amzn.to/2wM4OCK
Series: Magnus Pack https://amzn.to/2wT0wJW
Series: Call of Crows https://amzn.to/2wQDV0D
Series: The Gathering https://amzn.to/2KBDidn
Series: Honey Badger Chronicles https://amzn.to/2Kzkj2X
Series: Dragon Kin https://amzn.to/2wPLAMx
Stephanie Burke is the author who started my journey into ebooks. In 2005' I was bored of what I was reading from NY publishers. I went searching on the web, happened upon a cover with a black woman on it. Whaaaaat? NoI had to know what this book was about. What was an e-book? I'd never heard of such a thing. Well. Keeper of The Flame's Heroine was a nurse, who had a spacecraft land in her backyard. Turns out it is the Hero, and he is in labor!!! Yes, you read that correctly. I purchased that book with no way of knowing how to read it. I didn't know what an e-reader was. I eventually had my sister print it out and I read it that way. HOLY SMOKES, what a cover to cover read!!! Stephanie writes (MF / MM / MMM / MMF / MGFMMM) and per her bio, sex shifting shape-shifting dragons to under sea worlds, up to sexually confused elemental fey and homo erotic mysteries, all the way to pastel challenged urban sprites. There is literally something for everyone in Ms. Burke's catalogue of books. My favorites are the following:
Series: Testrios https://bit.ly/2x05SmT
Series: Pride Talon https://bit.ly/2x05SmT
Series: Hot Not To Date https://bit.ly/2x05SmT
Melissa Schroeder is one of the few Romance Authors that I follow from genre to genre. Not only has she always written Multicultural MC's but her stories have a different feel across each of sub genre. I was a friend of Melissa's from the old Yahoo groups back in the day and have been a fan of her work since she started publishing. Her PNR's are extra special to me but in the case of the By Blood series, she combines my love of historical romance with my love of vampires!
Series: By Blood https://amzn.to/2rP1Ok8
Series: Telepathic Cravings https://amzn.to/2KzzRUt
Series: The Cursed Clan https://amzn.to/2k6F7DF
Series: Lonestar Wolf Pack: https://bit.ly/2KvDVVy
L.A. Banks books have kick ass heroines of color, combined with some awesome world-building. Damali, the Heroine, a Black Woman drives most of the series and when these books were being released, it wasn't the norm. L.A. was a trailblazer, talk about a roller coaster ride of well written suspense and romance along the way. I had the pleasure of meeting Ms. Banks on only three occasions before she passed away but let me tell you, a nicer woman, you would ever meet. Her vampire world will keep you enthralled.
Series: Vampire Huntress Legend https://amzn.to/2rO2qGW
Rhyannon Byrd was my second email fan letter. I read her contemporary, Waiting For It and told her that she made my womb throb with her hot sex scenes. MEOW!!!!! Yeah I said it, I had never had that happen to me before. Ms. Byrd is the author of some very dirty talking Alpha's, who looooove their women and they'll will move heaven and earth to please them. Her Harlequin PNR's are a little lower on the heat scale than her others ones BUT she more than delivers in terms of story. To continue a series for a length of time without it getting stale is a true testament to an author's talen and like Nalini Singh, Ms. Byrd takes us on a journey that you never want to end.
Series: Primal Instinct
Series: Magick Men
These PNR books are ones that I think were ahead of their time.
Series: David de Morrissey https://amzn.to/2IpoEoN
Linda Lael Miller
Series: Black Rose Chronicles https://amzn.to/2L5ZFbG
Sharie Kohler aka Sophie Jordan
Series: Moon Chasers https://amzn.to/2IM62mf
The following is a list of my Autobuy PNR Authors. I don't even read the blurbs, I must have anything they release because these authors keep the storylines fresh and write great characters that stick with me. I'm also a sucker for secondary characters as well. Totally love reading a book and noticing who the next couple will be or catch up on couples from previous books, and these Authors deliver on that. Sequels and Series, I MUST HAVE THEM!!!! HA!
Lara Adrian https://amzn.to/2KxuchI
Vivi Anna https://amzn.to/2KBi8fj
Amanda Ashley aka Allyson James https://amzn.to/2KBi9j
Jennifer Ashley https://amzn.to/2k8pCeL
Shara Azod https://amzn.to/2k83GAl
Anya Bast https://amzn.to/2IO4S9X
Dana Marie Bell https://amzn.to/2KvXRb5
Jaci Burton https://amzn.to/2IN26BQ
Coreen Callahan https://amzn.to/2KzJRwY
Marly Chance https://amzn.to/2Kz8pq1
Ashlyn Chase https://amzn.to/2IOQ5Mc
Kendra Leigh Castle https://amzn.to/2k7K13e
Kresley Cole https://amzn.to/2k579Q5
Alyssa Day https://amzn.to/2rQEK4J
Sylvia Day https://amzn.to/2k5Xrgn
Delilah Devlin https://amzn.to/2IRaRL4
P.J. Schnyder aka Piper J. Drake: https://amzn.to/2k8ddrc
Dianne Duvall https://amzn.to/2k7s05u
Cynthia Eden https://amzn.to/2k9eFJM
Donna Grant https://amzn.to/2k5sCZa
Kym Grosso https://amzn.to/2k58BSo
Thea Harrison https://amzn.to/2k4n5Ce
Michele Hauf https://amzn.to/2k82Y6d
Yvette Hines https://amzn.to/2k57HFD
Emma Holly https://amzn.to/2rS03Te
Larissa Ione https://amzn.to/2k82ZHj
Alexandra Ivy https://amzn.to/2k6JrmD
Allyson James aka Jennifer Ashley https://amzn.to/2k6JrTF
Lisa Renee Jones https://amzn.to/2KyCyW7
Dara Joy https://amzn.to/2IPC6FK
Stacia Kane https://amzn.to/2IQjvJP
Heather Killough-Walden https://amzn.to/2k9fTom
Sherri L. King https://amzn.to/2IMkTNx
Laurie London https://amzn.to/2ISvI0Q
Nana Malone https://amzn.to/2ILb1DY
Judy Mays https://amzn.to/2IRu7bt
Cheyenne McCray https://amzn.to/2k7XM28
Patrice Michelle https://amzn.to/2k6v0ir
Elisabeth Naughton https://amzn.to/2rQsZLy
Sharon Page https://amzn.to/2IMlKxJ
Kristen Painter https://amzn.to/2rPVrwR
Pamela Palmer https://amzn.to/2IJoV9F
Kate Pearce https://amzn.to/2k7KMt6
Caridad Piniero https://amzn.to/2k6SSCj
Lynsay Sands https://amzn.to/2k82g92
Eve Silver https://amzn.to/2k7pWdK
Nalini Singh https://amzn.to/2k58aaI
Kathryn Smith https://amzn.to/2rR6IgC
Sydney Somers https://amzn.to/2kax9JH
Terry Spear https://amzn.to/2INkjiG
Juliana Stone https://amzn.to/2k6IaMn
Jory Strong https://amzn.to/2k8urVp
Jordan Summers https://amzn.to/2IOrwz6
J.D. Tyler https://amzn.to/2ILxAID
Paige Tyler https://amzn.to/2IPvKXa
Stephanie Tyler https://amzn.to/2rSUCDF
Shiloh Walker https://amzn.to/2k818lO
N.J. Walters https://amzn.to/2k8rZOG
Christine Warren https://amzn.to/2rRYbKc
Mary Wine https://amzn.to/2rRraOl
Laura Wright https://amzn.to/2k8rqV4
Rebecca Zanetti https://amzn.to/2IPvvve
Below are more authors whose PNR's I enjoy and I think you should try :D
A.C. Arthur https://amzn.to/2IOsjQA
Jade Buchanan https://amzn.to/2kaXgAB
Jodi Lynn Copeland https://amzn.to/2k5C92k
Taige Crenshaw https://amzn.to/2k689Dr
Kate Douglas https://amzn.to/2k5Wu7N
Ava Gray https://amzn.to/2rPeMhY
Nathalie Gray https://amzn.to/2k5W0hZ
McKenna Jeffries https://amzn.to/2rRt9lH
Marteeka Karland https://amzn.to/2k7VW
Angela Knight https://amzn.to/2k6QYSb
Titania Ladley https://amzn.to/2rPdVOi
Marilyn Lee https://amzn.to/2rPdsf0
Lora Leigh https://amzn.to/2rR6bv8
Tressie Lockwood https://amzn.to/2rQmLLw
Kathy Love https://amzn.to/2INk6Mh
Reana Malori https://amzn.to/2k7pqwk
Mynx Malone https://amzn.to/2k4OpQD
Alexis Morgan https://amzn.to/2rSTnnZ
Tuesday Morrigan https://amzn.to/2rRq84V
Cait Miller https://amzn.to/2k7IytK
Theresa Meyers https://amzn.to/2rRqTLj
Michelle M Pillow https://amzn.to/2k9dmum
Mandy Roth https://amzn.to/2k5juUl
Milly Taiden https://amzn.to/2k6KW4f
Tawny Taylor https://amzn.to/2k7VCj2
Theodora Taylor https://amzn.to/2k5CGBm
Twyla Turner https://amzn.to/2rPixUs
These are new to me PNR's Authors whos' books are in my TBR, eagerly awaiting me to dig into. They gave great blurb, LOL.
Kate Baxter https://amzn.to/2k7HqX2
Alana Delacroix https://amzn.to/2KxWJnp
Vivien Jackson https://amzn.to/2wKlY3S
Juliet Lyons https://amzn.to/2wWHSRB
Maria Vale https://amzn.to/2KwNljM
No matter what books you enjoy, there is a PNR that is just right for you. What are some of your favorite paranormal books/authors and why? Please share your favorites with us on Twitter using the #RomBkLove.
Meka, a voracious Romance Reader and Reviewer, can be found on Twitter discussing her love of the Romance genre and life in general at @mektastic or you can find her Romance Reviews at The Bookpushers: http://thebookpushers.com/reviewer-bios.
Joy is the co-owner of Joyfully Reviewed, a Romance Review site that will be celebrating their 13th year come this August. Joy attends many Romance conventions and Book-signings in addition to sharing videos and pics of her cat, Bleu. She can be found at the following social media sites.