posted on February 27, 2017 by Mallory Crowe

The Embarrassing Truth

by Mallory Crowe

I have a confession. I am an avid romance reader. Okay, you’re probably not shocked to hear that. At this point in my life (and career) I have become very comfortable with my reading preferences (and even guilty pleasure viewing preferences, i.e. Vampire Diaries). However there was a long time in my life that my love of romance embarrassed me.

To be fair, the age when I started to read the genre didn’t help. I was still in elementary school (I think sixth grade) when I realized I only liked books that had a hero and a heroine and they both ended up together in the end. Imagine my shock and joy when I realized there was an entire section of the bookstore just for me!

As an awkward thirteen year old, I couldn’t just walk into a store and browse through the Fabio covers. Instead I would quickly pull out a book I was interested in and twist around to stand in front of the regular fiction section, pretending I was looking at a “normal” book.

Because that’s the image of romance I had in my head. They were supposed to be corny. Melodramatic. Simple reads for simple people. Years later, when visiting an old teacher (because I was/still am the sort of teacher’s pet that would revisit old teachers years later) I mentioned how fond I was of romance and she smiled at me and said, “Don’t worry. You’ll outgrow it.” I think I politely nodded and changed subjects, but internally I was horrified. Outgrow it? Romance novels were my escape. My alternate reality. My fantasy world. Why would I ever want to outgrow it?

As I went through business school and onto the career pool, I wouldn’t say my reading habits were a secret, but I didn’t bring them up in casual conversation. But in the early 2010s something happened. Something that took away the awkwardness of reading a bodice ripper in public.

The e-reader.

So many things changed with the e-reader. A domino effect. A woman could ready the smuttiest of smutty books on the train right next to that respectable businessman (who was also probably reading something dirty on his iPad). With the e-reader, romance novels (which were always popular) exploded in growth. And as they became more popular, people were no longer embarrassed.

This gave power to a (mostly female) readership. Even though a book could be violent, graphic and have a whole host of disturbing content, the idea of sex or love was somehow so awkward that it had to be hidden from friends and family.

Now that I’m older and wiser and have a greater sense of myself, I’m no longer embarrassed by my reading habits. Not only do I own them, but I take pride in it. Even better yet, every the romance loving community is growing every day. The internet and social media has brought together likeminded readers in a way never possible ten or twenty years ago.

And today I’m very blessed to say that I’m not embarrassed any longer.


The Beautiful Thief
by Mallory Crowe

She was the one that got away. The one time Adam couldn’t finish the job. The one time his conscious got the better of him.

Now she’s back and Adam has two options: Kill her or help her get the revenge she deserves.

No matter how convincing her arguments may be or how distracting he finds her, he was raised on one staunch principle that has kept him alive so far. Never trust a pretty face.

Mallory Crowe

Mallory Crowe

Mallory Crowe is the award winning author of the Fractured Farrells series, the Bad Boys of the Underworld series and many other novels. She grew up surrounded by rescue dogs and escaping into romance books whenever possible. After trying to do the “adult” thing by getting an accounting degree and CPA license, she decided to try her hand at writing and never looked back.

An avid traveler, reader, and Netflix addict, Mallory currently lives in Michigan, with her husband and three laidback dogs.

2 thoughts on “The Embarrassing Truth”

  1. Avatar Sharlene Wegner says:

    I still like to read paperbacks, so certain covers seem inappropriate to bring to my daughter’s music lesson, or to read at the gym. However, the librarians are used to me by now. LOL. I have no problem telling people I read romance books and have found such a huge community of romance readers and writers on facebook and blogs! Thanks for the post, Mallory!

  2. Avatar Daphne Taylor says:

    So, I love romance books, too. I solved the “cover” problem by getting a really nice book cover (leather-like with a built-in book light and bookmark!) Now, I can feel comfortable anywhere – and have even had folks think I was reading the Bible. Plus, the cover keeps the books neat & clean in my bag which is nice for “keepers” or for trading at the used book store.

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