Day 12 Jill Shalvis – Simply Irresistible Romance

 Romance – Food for the Soul

I read a lot. I read mysteries, I read thrillers, I read suspense, I read autobiographies. I read People Magazine and US Weekly. Heck, I’ll read the back of a cereal box.

But first love is romance. It’s food for my soul. I was reading it long before I ever wrote it, and it’s still my first choice, my go-to read.


Jill Shalvis It Had to Be YouPeople ask me why, and the answer used to escape me. I didn’t know how to express why romance matters so much. But I think I’ve figured it out, thanks to some reader letters I’ve received over the years.

Dear Jill,
I used to let my boyfriend knock me around a little. I excused it because he was good to me in other ways. My friend gave me a stack of your books and demanded I read them to find out what a real guy is like. She was right. Through your wonderful stories I learned that a real guy is someone who would never lift a hand to a woman. Thanks for giving me the courage to walk away from a bad guy and have hope that I’ll find a better one. p.s. I wouldn’t mind Josh from FOREVER AND A DAY…

Dear Jill,
Thanks for writing real characters. Chloe from Head Over Heels with her life-threatening asthma. Lance, with Cystic Fibrosis. My brother has Cystic Fibrosis, and it means so much to us that you portrayed that so beautifully. Gives us hope he too can have a HEA someday.

Dear Jill,
Just read the scene in Simply Irresistible where the heroine has an orgasm sitting on top of her running washing machine. All I can say is that I’m sincerely regretting buying a stacking washer and dryer… Signed, Disappointed In Cincinnati.

The truth is, a romance novel is food for the brain. No, I get that it’s not brain surgery, but it’s not exactly brain candy either. It means something. Romance goes right to the heart and soul. It makes us laugh, makes us cry, makes us yearn. Gives us hope. And that’s why romance matters.


 Questions for Jill:

What is the craziest or ugliest object in your house, and why do you keep it?

Probably my really ugly donkey slippers. Yes, donkey slippers. From the movie Shrek. They’re HUGE and really rather ratty by now, but they are the most comfortable working shoes a writer could ask for. I wear them every day on my deck while writing… 🙂

If there was a movie made about your life, what would it be called? (And just for fun, who would play you?)

I don’t know what it would be called, or who would want to play me, but it would be a modernized take on I Love Lucy, I can tell you that much.

What is the best non-monetary gift you ever received?

My kids. But I only say that because they’re sleeping right now, and awfully cute when they’re sleeping… When they wake up, I’ll be sorely tempted to change my answer to my dog. 🙂

If you had to pick one romantic scene or couple to recommend to a first-time reader of YOUR books, which would it be? (Any picks for romance novels in general?)

Josh and Grace from FOREVER AND A DAY. My favorite scene of theirs is a not quite sober painting-the-living-room scene that starts out angry, goes to emotionally-charged, and ends up spicy hot. 🙂

Jill is  generously donating  books from  the Lucky Harbor or Animal Magnetism Series.  Five lucky readers get to choose one book from either series. No international sorry. To enter the domestic contest, either leave a comment here or enter the weekly drawing on the contest page. Or both.  (Only one entry per commenter per post, though – multiple comments on one essay does not give you more chances.)  Comment entries must be posted by 11:59pm EST Aug 12 to be eligible, though winners will be announced the following week.



Jill ShalvisNew York Times and USA Today bestseller Jill Shalvis is the award winning author of over four dozen romance novels, including her sexy contemporary and award winning Lucky Harbor series (FOREVER AND A DAY was one of Amazon’s Top Romances for 2012). She won a Rita for SIMPLY IRRESISTIBLE and is a 3-time National Readers Choice winner as well. Find her at JillShalvis. com


Buy Jill’s books on Amazon


  • Nancy Huddleston

    I love reading your daily blog and your books. They make me see that I’m not the only one out there who sees things a little differently. Thanks.

  • Bette Hansen

    Your books and daily blog are some of the most entertaining reading I do! Thanks for sharing your hilarious outlook on life and give fratboy a hug from me…I just love that dog

  • lisa

    Romance is food for the soul and the more you read it the more you want of it. I love your stories, I relate to your stories and your humor (whether in a story or from real life) is infectious. Keep writing and sharing, I can’t get enough :).

  • girlygirlhoosier52

    I’m glad you write such wonderful stories and even more so, that they touch people lives!

  • Melanie Backus

    You have gotten my curiosity up…. I will have to read about Josh and Grace.

  • Sharon Cooper

    Love the Lucky Harbor Series!!! I can’t wait for the next Lucky Harbor book to be released in Sept!!

  • Jen C

    I love your books (and your blog and your fb page and especially Man Wars)! One of my favorite things about your characters are their imperfections. Keep up the fantastic work and keep those stories coming! 🙂

  • Martha Lawton

    I enjoy your books so much and look forward to each and every one. Your blog makes me laugh more days than not and the man wars… well there is not enough adjectives some days… Your humor and realistic portraits of people make your reading so wonderful…. I am so glad the librarian pointed out your books to me…

    PS Frat dog stories are the bomb!

  • Connie Ruzich

    Your books are wonderful — but donkey slippers? NOW THAT IS JUST AWESOME. 😉

    • :o) Hope you’re enjoying xoxo

  • someproseandcon

    Love your Animal Magnetism series — how about a novel with a goat as a secondary animal character? 🙂

    • oh my! ;o) Hope you’re enjoying!

  • Laurie W G

    I’ve been a fan of your writing for a long, long time. You brighten my day with your commentary on everyday life via your journal. Your stories contain chemistry and humor and characters that you care about. Your books are my escape, my vacation from my problems.

    • Hi, Laurie! Thanks for the comment. Hope you’re enjoying xoxo

  • Anne

    Thank you for the essay. I haven’t read a book of yours that I have not really, really enjoyed. You can’t write them fast enough for me. Please don’t ever stop writing.

  • Mona Kekstadt

    I’m planning on making a box of some of your books and sending them to my friend from grade school…Wow! She has never read your books…Who has never read your books? …anyway I found out she has RA and well I know without a shadow of a doubt she will love them. So which to start her out with? She loves animals…when were kids she had 3 cats…so maybe a little of both…love reading your books. I can’t wait for the next Lucky Harbor book…ALWAYS ON MY MIND…

    • Hi, Mona! Hope you’re enjoying, too! xoxo

  • Beth Re

    Wow I like the Forever and A day scene haven’t read the book Yet!

  • helena rizzuto

    Your books…are simply fabulous. You show what romance now is like. With all the ups and downs. Love your books!

  • Beverly DeeAnjello

    I really like the Lucky Harbor series, its like going on vacation and visiting a favorite place.

    • Hi, Beverly. Hope you’re enjoying

  • Ann

    I agree, your characters are REAL!!! Thank you!

  • Kareni

    Many thanks for your fun books!

  • Kathleen O

    You rock Jill… and so do your books… You write some of the best characters..

  • Toni Linenberger

    those are wonderful letters. Thanks for sharing.

  • Ora

    Do you ever feel like your under more pressure to create unforgettable characters after receiving letters like those?

  • Meredith Richardson

    Thank you for sharing those letters with us 🙂 I am a HUGE fan of your Lucky Harbor series!!!

  • Kim Cornwell

    OMG in love the one about the washing machine! I laughed out loud in the ford dealership. That’s why I love romance! It picks me up when I’m feeling down!

  • Kristy Birch

    Those letters are amazing. I think it’s wonderful how one book or even one scene can such an impact on so many different people in so many different ways.

  • jcp

    I’m embrassed to say I’ve never read one of your books. I need to pick up your Lucy Harbor books to start

  • Briana Hammonds

    Loved the reader letters. It’s awesome that you’re able to inspire through your writing. The washing machine comment…lmbo. I thoroughly enjoy your characters & stories. I hope when I begin to publish my characters have the same draw as yours.

  • Sandi in OH

    Isn’t it wonderful to know that you helped one person leave an abusive relationship. I love all of your books and I am anxiously awaiting the next one.

  • Nikki H

    I love the reader letters. The first one took my breath away.

  • Sharlene Wegner

    I have been loving your books from both of these series!

  • Rosemarie N.

    Love reading your books. Your characters in your books makes us all have hope for HEA one day. Keep up the great writing and making us laugh. Thanks Jill.

  • Melissa Cowling Terry

    Thanks for sharing the letters.

  • Stephanie

    When I ready any of your books, I always feel so connected to the characters. I feel like I live in Lucky Harbor. I also loved the Wilder Adventures.

    • Thanks for the comment. Hope you’re enjoying xoxo

  • Karen Johnston

    The first book of yours I read was Instant Attraction and I’ve been hooked ever since! You are by far my favorite author and I just want to thank you for sharing your talent with us!! 🙂

    • :o) Thanks for being here, Karen. Hope you’re enjoying ReadARomance.Month

  • Karin Anderson

    It’s amazing the effect stories can have on a person. You never know who could be in the exact situation you’re writing about, or how your book could help them. It’s wonderful.

  • Tawnya Bentley

    I agree with you my kids are the best gifts I have received, but they are teens, so my answer sometimes might be the dogs. The kids accuse me of treating them better anyways.

  • Cheryl Castings

    Jill, you are so right about the benefits of reading romance. I have been reading nothing but romance for years. I enjoy historicals, contemporaries, paranormals, and suspense. Romance novels touch my heart like no other genre does.

    • Thanks for being here, Cheryl!

  • Gina S.

    I only wish I had a fraction of your talent, Jill!

  • Hannah Weitzman

    I love your books so much! I’m looking forward to Always on My Mind next month. It can’t come out soon enough.

  • tonda hargett

    I love your essay, very powerful. Thank you for being there for us! 🙂

  • TrishJ

    I love that your books have humor along with the HEA. I always know I will enjoy the journey from beginning to end. And how awesome that doing something you obviously love will inspire so many of your readers.

  • Lorelei’s Lit Lair

    My days are happier reading your books, thanks for sharing your reasons and I can’t wait to read your next 😉

  • I love these essays that are sharing reader letters. Thanks for such great books, and the entertaining I Love Lucy stories.

  • Leslie Thompson Monfort

    I love your books. I’ve downloaded about 4 in one week and I downloaded your recipe book. That’s how much I love them.

  • Corinn Copeland

    If you wrote it, i want to read it! Love all your books! Please keep putting out the good stuff!

    • Hope you’re enjoying, too! xoxo

  • Mirmie

    THIS!!! If I need a pick-me-up or an escape, your books are definitely part of my GO-TO reads!! Thank you so much!!

  • Penney Wilfort

    I can’t wait to read it had to be you, it sounds very good.

    • Hi, Penney – hope you’re enjoying too!

  • Pamby50

    I was given Under the Mistletoe for Christmas. I had to go and read the rest of the series. Thanks for writing such wonderful books.

  • Márcia

    Jill I love your books. I’ve read all of them on e-book and have almost everyone in print to. I only wish I could have them in my native language, Portuguese, but, unfortunately, they haven’t been published here yet. Thank you for your amazing work 🙂

    • Thank you for being here, Marcia! xoxo Are you enjoying

      • Márcia

        Yes, I didn’t know the site, but I like it 🙂

  • Britney Adams

    How wonderful to be able to give others hope through your writing! Thank you!!

  • Martha Eddy

    Jill, I love your books. You and your partner in crime Kristan help brighten my reading.

    • Right?! hope you’re enjoying all the posts at xoxo

  • Kim

    I’ve been enjoying your Animal Magnetism stories. Have to love a guy that likes animals.

  • Janie

    Josh and Grace are one of my favorite couples, but Toby and Tank stole my heart in “Forever and a Day.”

  • christinejensen

    I haven’t yet read one of your books but will have to soon;)

  • Nicole Fortuna

    I love your books. I read a lot, too much some people say and I too read mysteries and thrillers and just about anything I come across. Romance is my favorite and always will be.

  • ki pha

    Oh your fan letters! Thank you for sharing them with us. They just show how much we love romance and of course how to have that good O.

  • Evelyn S

    Love your books!! Thanks for the giveaway!!

    • You’re welcome, Evelyn! Hope you’re enjoying! xoxo

  • Azucena Rodriguez

    I have a few of your books on my TBR pile, I really need to read them. Loved Simply Irresistible 🙂

    • Joyce A.

      I loved Josh and Grace. I laughed so much the first time I read it, that I had to read it again.. remember when she asks “are they broken?” He says “they just like me more!”

  • Eileen Aberman-Wells

    Josh & Grace did NOT have a painting scene. That was Chloe & Sawyer. You just wanted to see who was paying attention – right?!? Love your books. Love your sense of humor. Love your insightfulness. I love reading romance because it takes me away from the daily humdrum that could be driving me nuts. Let’s me tune everything else out.

    • Hi, Eileen – thanks for the comment! Hope you’re enjoying xoxo

  • Meridith Crane

    Thanks for the sharing your thoughts and the letters from readers on why romance matters. I’ve never been asked that question, but if anyone were to look at my book collection it is overwhelmingly dominated by romance novels. My Nook is starting to mirror my paperback collection in the theme of the books found there.

  • alisha woods

    Since discovering your books have trying to get hands on older ones

    • So many books to read, so little time! xoxo

  • Ruth

    Romance novels ARE food for the brain! Not only do they make you think, re-evaluate, and sometimes even question, my historicals, thanks to intelligent, well-researched authors, have taught me truck loads of facts that I further research and share with my students when the opportunity presents itself. I had a lousy boyfriend in my twenty’s. I wish I was reading romance then. Maybe I would have realized sooner how a man who professes to care about you will treat you sooner than I did. Thank you, Jill, for reminding us that there is something more. That’s why romance matters.

  • Krysten Michelsen

    LOVE your books! I reread them all the time when I want a good story and a happy ending

  • Jaymy M

    love ya Jill. Thanks for years of fun reads (and pressure relief in a few boxes of tissues too.) When have had a long day… week… month.. year… etct… Can count on you to make me laugh. And from south village, to trueblood, lucky harbor and oh so many tasty tales before and between you surely have tempted so many of us, as we blaze our way through a few forests over the years, turning pages for an intimate look at your next offering. Have loved every second!

  • MaryC

    Love your books – thanks for all the mini vacations they have provided.

  • Ketta Peters

    Your book “Head Over Heels” was a Kindle Deal of the Day just 3 days ago, and I snatched it right up — it’s in the “priority” TBR pile! 😉

  • Erica

    I really just love that ugly object question. 🙂

  • Lol I really loved reading your post today, Jill. You made me laugh this evening, thank you for that!

  • Joanne Ozment

    Love your books.

    • Hi, Joanne! Hope you have the chance to see more of the great essays at :o)

  • Joyce A.

    I have to agree with you. All of my life I have been a big reader, but I always come back to the romance books. They help me let go of the world that we are living in and have a little fantasy time just with myself. I can read and let anything or anyone bother me. I have laughed so at your book “The Sweetest Thing” more that anything else. I love it when Mia enters the pic. That just did something special to me.

    • Thank you for your great comments, Joyce. xoxo

  • rebecca moe

    Love your books, Jill, and your Donkey slippers–and OMG, Disappointed in Cincinnati’s letter? Too funny! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Mary McCoy

    I love all of your books and next time I see you I will have cookies for you!

    • Hi, Mary! Where are my cookies? ;o) Hope you’re enjoying Read-A-Romance Month. :o)

  • Marcy Shuler

    Your books are keepers for me, Jill, and if I win I’ll donate a book to someone else to get them hooked on you too.

  • Tory

    Thanks for sharing your fan letters -LOLed at Cincinattis letter! Just what I needed after my day at work 🙂

  • BookLady

    Love your books! Great post and interview. I especially like your donkey slippers. Thanks for sharing.

  • Laura Z

    Love your books especially the Lucky Harbor series, thanks for making me laugh when reading your books or your blog or your facebook page.

  • Renee Sass

    Love your books! Thanks for writing such great characters!

  • Jill, I kind of feel like I;m living a blur right now, which you more than almost anyone can understand! ;o) Thank you so much for this! It’s wonderful, and so are you. xoxo

  • Becky Rabalais

    Love reading that you wear your slippers while working! Did I read right? You write while on your deck? Fabulous!

  • QuenKne M

    And people still question if romance novels matter? Really?!? Maybe one day people will realize that books / movies like Gone With The Wind and West Side Story have more to do with than just social differences and injustices – they have to do with LOVE. Thanks for writing such great novels.

  • Erin F

    amen!!! This is exactly why I read romance too 🙂 Lets me escape reality and feel better…

  • Marcia Berbeza

    <3 your books!! Particularly Animal Magnetism. And while I have the traditional bunny slippers, I do have an excuse of pet rabbits. What else would I wear?

  • Wanda B

    I would love your donkey slippers. I had teddy bear slippets I wore every night. Sadly they are no more but comfortable? Absolutely!

    Wanda Barefoot

  • brhill2010

    I love reading your books. The give me hope that there are good guys out there and I hope that one day I find the one foe me. Thanks for writing great hero and heroine!!

  • Emily Baucom

    I love you books and cannot wait for Always on My Mind to come out, Lucky Harbor and your Animal Magnetism Series are amazing.

  • Pennie Morgan

    Hey Jill, love your books and especially your characters! You are right, romance is food for the soul.

  • Joan Varner

    Like so many other commenters here, I love your books. The Lucky Harbor series has provided me with laughter, joy and a few little tears reading about Maddie and Tara. I am ready to start Chloe’s book now. Who knew about washers and orgasms???? Please keep up the good work.

  • Kim

    I love your books! I really love you and Kristan Higgins. The two of you crack me up!!

  • donnas

    I think you hit it perfectly in that last line – “Romance goes right to the heart and soul. It makes us laugh, makes us
    cry, makes us yearn. Gives us hope. And that’s why romance matters.”

    Its so very true and really what it is all about.

  • Kortney

    Love Jill’s books

  • Ada H

    There are no truer words than romance is food for the soul. Love Jill and her books! (PS international so I can’t be entered in the giveaway – just wanted to comment!!)

  • Linda White

    Love your books. The last paragraph of your essay “goes right to my heart and soul.” Thanks for sharing yourself.

  • Chelsea

    I agree reading about first love, it great. It is actually addicting to me. I have been known to re read the first books in a series so that I can experience the characters falling in love again. I so enjoy rooting for the character to open their eyes or give it a try, or work up some courage. First love is wonderful, and it makes romance oh so rewarding to read!

  • Sue G.

    I love Jill. She is funny, witty and just awesome. I love how real she is. I love the Lucky Harbor series too. This is a auto-buy for me.

  • Ann Mettert

    “Food for the brain” I like that. 🙂 I love your books and your blog. 🙂

  • Laura Randall

    Love your books and all the happy endorphins they produce. And your I-Love-Lucy blogs posts make me laugh out loud. No need to enter me in the drawing. Already have all the JS books!

  • Flora Segura-Buchler

    Terrific blogpost today, Jill. I loved the letters you shared with us.

  • Sarah Gianocaro

    I wish I could live in Lucky Harbor.

  • E.L. F.

    What an awesome responsibility…to let readers know that there is a better life to strive for without being preachy and using an enjoyable story. Thank you for sharing your talent and love of life.

  • Lorelei’s Lit Lair

    Love your stories and your day to day blog posts. You and Kristan fill my days with lol moments….

  • Marilyn White

    I can’t wait to read the next Lucky Harbor book!

  • mariannewestrich

    Jill – Just have to say I devour everything you, Kristan Higgins and Robyn Carr write. I’m normally a paranormal / urban fantasy fan, but I look forward to each new book that any one of the three of you release. Don’t laugh – I use your books to “cleanse my palate”! 😎