By Kayla King, Editorial Assistant to Harlequin Intrigue
I don’t know about you, but a regency romance novel was my initiation into reading romance at large! So what it is it about this subgenre that keeps its popularity evergreen?
1. There’s a regency novel out there for everyone. Believe it or not, for a historical genre, it’s very flexible. Sequels and rewritings of classics, horrific takes on the originals, introducing alternate-history and contemporary flavored relationships into the time period…you name it, it’s happened in regency romance.
2. Its familiarity in modern culture keeps it accessible. Most readers, whether new or seasoned to romance, have been introduced to the regency era through other novels and more recently, movies and television shows focused on the era. It’s a small step to taking a closer look.
3. There’s plenty of historical culture to draw from for flavor. There’s a decent amount of research and work going into the writing on the part of the author to provide the reader with gorgeous costuming, lavish balls, and all sorts of bells and ribbons. These titles are therefore indulgent on several levels.
4. It evolves with the times. There are plenty of amazing historical authors out there who are bending the rules of what was socially acceptable in heroes and heroines of the time, creating more appealing reads for those of us who like heroes who aren’t always brutish and heroines who are more outspoken.
5. It’s essentially a fantasy world. There’s been enough departure from rigid accuracy in the subgenre that what’s emerged is a lavish stage upon which historical authors can set whichever story they wish to tell. This grant of authorial freedom means that regency readers will always have more to look forward to—we’ll never run out of dukes to swoon over, balls to attend, and so forth.
What are some of your favorite regency romances? Or another historical era you’re deeply in love with? Let us know in the comments!