Friday, May 5, 2017

Fiction Genres Explained--Part One: The Romantic Suspense and the Mystery Romance

The classic mystery novel may or may not contain romance.  If it does, the romance is usually a minor sideline and not an integral part of the story.  However, for mystery readers who enjoy a stronger romantic thread blended in with the mystery, there are two types of books that contain both romance and mystery.

Romantic Suspense

In a romantic suspense novel, about half of the story is devoted to romance and the other half to mystery.  The hero or heroine is often a suspect in a mystery or murder case. Gothic romances and other books where the heroine is being stalked or is jeopardy are good examples of the romantic suspense. 

The famous novel Rebecca could be considered a romantic suspense because the mystery centers around whether or not the hero is guilty of murdering his first wife...and is his second wife in danger?  A good part of the novel  revolves around the relationship between the hero and the heroine, and romance plays a strong, major role in the plot.

Mystery Romance

Just as a romantic suspense is heavy on the romance, a mystery romance is more of a mystery with a touch of romance. In this type of book, romance plays a stronger role than in a classic mystery, but is not as strong as a romantic suspense.  Less than half of the book is devoted to romance. The mystery is the strongest element in the story and it is never overshadowed by the romance. 

There really isn’t a lot of difference between the two.  In fact, on online lists the romantic suspense and mystery romance are almost interchangeable.  However, from a publishing perspective, the romantic suspense or books that are heavy on the romance angle are much more likely to be categorized as a romance than a mystery romance, which remains firmly in the mystery genre.

My sister and I enjoy reading and writing romantic suspense and mystery romance.  We started out writing gothics and romantic suspense before we moved on to mystery romance and writing a traditional mystery series.  Many of our first novels were published by Avalon Books.  Below are three of our mystery romance titles.  For a limited time read Path of the Jaguar for 99 cents.

                     Click on link to order Flames  of Deceit 

                        Click on link to order The Vanished Lady 

                  SPECIAL PRICE!  Click on link to order   Path of the Jaguar for only 99c.