I’ve read a healthy percentage of Nora Roberts’ work, but my favorites are her early Silhouettes. In one of them, From this Day, the heroine is the manager of a small hotel.
I’ve read that same healthy percentage of our own Muriel Jensen’s books, too, but my favorite two are A Carol Christmas and Valentine Hearts and Flowers.
I read everything Mary Balogh writes, but I’ve re-read her Christmas stories so often I think the books start jumping off the shelf every October.
I’m a terrible Kristan Higgins groupie. We said hello at a conference in Chicago and I’m surprised she didn’t run when she read my nametag, and I swear I used my own name. I have read all of her books, most of them more than once, but Catch of the Day has a special place in my reader’s heart.
I also come precariously close to stalking Kathleen Gilles Seidel. If I could only have one romance novel ever again, it would be Till the Stars Fall.
So why do I re-read these particular books? What is the common thread?
I’m almost afraid to say it, but it is the usually the secondary characters. The reason I’m almost afraid is that I was warned from my very earliestwriting-in-longhand days to not give the supporting cast too much attention, time, or strength. It is one of those rules I occasionally blow off myself. Well, often.
So do the writers I’ve listed above.
And for this, speaking strictly as a reader, I thank them. Again and again and again. At least once for each time I read their books.
A whole flock of orphaned kids stole center stage in A Carol Christmas. In Catch of the Day there is a wonderful, wonderful dog. In the Nora Roberts story there is a quirky, fun staff. Mary Balogh’s Christmas stories have children who clutch at your heart and lovely, snowy Regency holidays that are characters unto themselves. In Nan and Kristi’s books, I love the protagonists’ friends (yay, Julie!) as much as the heroes and heroines themselves. In Till the Stars Fall I am in love with Danny French and would still like for Kathleen to write his story. I’d be glad to give her pointers about the woman Danny would love.
What about you? We’re not nosy or anything, but we’d really like to know—what are your re-reads and why? And, while you’re at it, tell us how you feel about secondary characters.