I wasn’t always a published author. In fact although I wanted to write in the worst possible way (I had characters talking to me but I kept pushing them to the back of my mind…what did I know about writing) I had a serious reading addiction and that seemed to be more influential than sitting down and starting my first novel.
I confess in the beginning, I had serious attitude about reading historical romance. What can I say, I was incredibly short sighted. Okay, EXTEREMLY short sighted and as a result I know I missed out on a great deal of amazing reads. In any event I was a contemporary romance fan. That was it. I didn’t do paranormal, I had attitude about Sci-fi (still not a huge fan of that sub-genre…but I’ve read some really good books in this genre just the same) and as I already pointed out I eschewed the very idea of stepping back in time and reading a historical.
Why did I have this attitude as an adult? I have no clue. When I was fifteen I INHALED Gone with the Wind. I mean the moment I picked up that book during a family summer vacation, I refused to put it down, going so far as to carry it in my fishing creel when the family went out in our rented boat to fish. I was swept away to the South (I’m a born and bred California girl) and I was captivated by the characters, the setting, the action, and the heartbreak…well basically the entire book. So you’d think I’d be good when it came to expanding my reading but yeah, not so much.
I graduated high school, went to college and eventually married and moved far away from home—to Mississippi. We were poor had there wasn’t a whole lot of spare cash, but I made sure I had my books. When we moved to military housing I met this amazing woman and we became great friends—and she loved to read too! So we got to talking one afternoon sitting outside in the warm southern afternoon and discussed books and before we knew it, it was decided a trip to the bookstore was immediately in order. We’d both buy two books and then exchange them. So we got into my little car and drove to the local Walden Books (I know dating myself here since they haven’t been in business for a while) and beat feet to the romance section. I started to browse the contemporary romance novels and my friend said, NO! Today you need to buy two books you normally wouldn’t ever consider reading. At first I thought she was crazy, why would I do that…but on the other hand I figure what could it hurt (at this point books weren’t that expensive) so I started to browse with an open mind. Well, by this time my friend had her two books. Johanna Lindsey had a new one out and she’d picked up a Judith McNaught book. I on the other hand scooped up Heather Grahams, One Wore Blue and One Rode West (this really began my inability to read a series in order lol) and went home.
I put my books aside and got busy, and the next day, my friend came over and handed me her Johanna Lindsey book with the words “You’ve got to put anything your reading aside and read this one NOW.” As she stuffed Savage Thunder into my hand. “Okay,” I said and since I wasn’t reading anything at the time I opened it to page one and started to read….and read…and read…and hubby came home and dinner wasn’t made because I was still reading…and continued to do so…who could think of eating when I was gripped by what would happen next in the story. I inhaled this book in one night! ONE NIGHT! And my love of historical romance was born. I set that one aside and immediately inhaled Heather Grahams two books (I still have these two books on my shelf they’ve moved all over the world with me.) and rushed to the bookstore (because at this point I’d clued in on the fact I missed a book in between) and purchased One Wore Gray. My friend who was a JL fan brought me her entire collection (yes she had them all) and I inhaled them within a month. I couldn’t believe how awesome Johanna Lindsey was and mentally willed her to get another story out immediately.
What’s the point of all this…I just read an article and learned that Johanna Lindsey has her 50th book coming out! 50! This is an amazing milestone and I can’t wait to read her latest. I’ve loved all of her books (yes even her sci-fi’s) and admire her creativity. Which got me to thinking…what is your favorite Johanna Lindsey novel? Can you pick just one? I couldn’t but here is the list of my favorite which I still enjoy re-reading…share with me your list…
Captive of my Dreams
And of course The Mallory series…
So what are your favorites? Which was the first one you’ve ever read?