Let’s talk best romance 2010. What? You knew it was coming. It’s not my fault you’re going to go buy books. OK, it kind of is, but I’m shopping just as hard with you.

 

MISS THE LAST TWO SMART BITCHES, TRASHY BOOKS COLUMNS AT KIRKUS? Click here and here to catch up. 

 

Continue reading >


 

What elevates a particular book to sigh-worthy levels? And, please note, I mean that literally. Romance readers have a noise we make when we mention a book that’s tremendously good. It’s somewhere between a gasp and a sigh, and while I can’t reproduce it in text, trust me, any romance fan can demonstrate the Good Romance Novel Noise for you.

The Good Romance Novel Noise is most commonly used on books that are emotionally moving, with characters who seem like truly living people, with a plot that prevents you from putting the book down without considerable resentment for the interruption. Most of all, romances that are mentioned with the Good Romance Novel Noise are the ones that you want to reread, so you can revisit those characters and experience that amazing plot all over again.

So here is my list of this year’s best romance books, those that rocked my socks, blew my mind and caused me to make the Good Romance Novel Noise. Good romance is a wonderful, powerful and most excellent thing—it absolutely deserves to be shared, discussed, savored and recommended. These are some of the very best of 2010, books that I recommend, as well as my readers, over at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books. Have a happy, merry, warm and wonderful holiday season, with quiet time to read, fine delicious things to drink and a happy ever after every day.

 

Last Night’s Scandal by Loretta Chase (Avon, 2010)

Hot Finish by Erin McCarthy (Berkley, 2010)

The Summer of You by Kate Noble (Berkley, 2010)

Something About You by Julie James (Berkley, 2010)

Maybe This Time by Jennifer Crusie (St Martin’s, 2010)

Exclusively Yours by Shannon Stacey (Carina Press, 2010)

Iron Duke by Meljean Brook (Berkley, 2010)

Butterfly Swords by Jeannie Lin (Harlequin, 2010)

His at Night by Sherry Thomas (Bantam, 2010)

Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes (EgmontUSA, 2010)

What the Librarian Did by Karina Bliss (Harlequin, 2010)

Archangel’s Kiss by Nalini Singh (Berkley, 2010)

Scoundrel by Zoe Archer (Zebra/Kensington, 2010)

All I Ever Wanted by Kristan Higgins (HQN, 2010)

Happy Ever After by Nora Roberts (Berkley, 2010)

Bayou Moon by Ilona Andrews (Ace, 2010)

The Forbidden Rose by Joanna Bourne (Berkley, 2010)

Nine Rules to Break when Romancing a Rake by Sarah MacLean (Avon, 2010)

Naked Edge by Pamela Clare (Berkley, 2010)

Strawberries for Dessert by Marie Sexton (Dreamspinner, 2010) 

Seven Nights to Forever by Evangeline Collins (Berkley, 2010)

 

I know I’m forgetting some, so please remind me and tell me your best-of picks for 2010. Happy New Year and happy reading to you!

 

Sarah Wendell is the co-creator, editor and mastermind of the popular romance blog Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.