RaeAnne Thayne – The Magical Journey of Romance

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Visit every day in August to see what 93+ of your favorite authors have to say about The Joy of Romance. Do you love Romance? Let’s celebrate. xo

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Romance Novels – A Joyful Gift

I vividly recall the first real romance novel I ever read.EnchantedLandCover

I grew up in an old farm house in the northern Indiana countryside, outside Fort Wayne. Our nearest neighbors were half a mile away and no other kids my age lived closer than a mile away, too far to ride my bike on my own. As a result, I had close friends at school and at church but not the kind I could hang out with every afternoon. Instead, I would read voraciously, whatever I could get my hands on. Nancy Drew. The Happy Hollisters. The Bobbsey Twins. Anne of Green Gables. I loved them all. The school library was my very favorite place on earth!

One year for Christmas when I was not quite twelve, my older sister received a stack of romance novels in her stocking. It just so happened, northern Indiana was hit that year with a huge, record-breaking blizzard just after Christmas. We missed two weeks of school that January because we had snowdrifts over ten feet high in front of our house and buses in our rural school district simply couldn’t get through (no, I’m not exaggerating! We have the pictures!).Redemption Bay

Playing in the snow was fun for awhile but we grew cold and bored quickly and it wasn’t long before I remembered those books my sister received for Christmas. I sneaked in and grabbed one and can still vividly remember the cover. The book was Land of Enchantment by Jude Devereaux … and I read the entire 400-page book one glorious snowy day. I have vivid memories of huddling under a quilt in my little attic bedroom in our drafty old farmhouse, savoring page after page.

Over the years, I re-read it many times, until the characters seem like old friends –Morgan and Seth and Joaquin, the handsome but nefarious neighbor.

Each time I would relive that magical journey of the first time I read the book –the wrenching fear when the heroine crouched at her deathly ill child’s bedside, the stirring excitement when the hero chased her across the country to find her after she was kidnapped and the absolute thrill in my heart when Morgan and Seth finally found theirEvergreen happy ending.

I did not realize that winter I was a pre-teen that this single book would turn out to be a life-altering experience, making me fall in love with romance novels and eventually leading me to a wonderful career writing them.

I’ve had many fan letters over the twenty years I’ve been a published author but one in particular stands out. It was from a teenage girl who wrote to tell me that she used to hate to read and dreaded reading assignments in school, until she picked up my book FREEFALL, one of my earlier Silhouette Intimate Moments titles. She fell completely in love with the characters and the story … so much that she and a girlfriend read passages from it to each other on the phone. Now, she wrote me, she has picked up many other romance novels and absolutely loves to read.

As a storyteller, what more could I ask than for that precious gift of knowing my book had ignited a love of reading in someone?

This is what I consider the joy of reading romance novels. They deliver escape, they deliver comfort, they deliver heart-pounding journeys with compelling characters and unforgettable plots.

They deliver magic.

RaeAnne recommends:

Linda Goodnight lindagoodnight.com ) – her category novels are wonderful but her first single-title, THE MEMORY HOUSE, is simply beautiful.

Donna Alward ( donnaalward.com ) – I love the charming communities she creates, especially her Jewell Cove series.


Questions for the Author:

Tell us about a moment in your life when you experienced sheer joy. 

I have a son with severe disabilities who is nonmobile and nonverbal, as most of my readers know, and life with him is sometimes tough. He spends a lot of time in the hospital and even when he’s not sick, his daily care needs are challenging – yet he seems to be a conduit for sheer joy for everyone who works with him, with a giant capacity for love only equaled by his huge smile.

One particular afternoon stands out when he was about five. After a tough winter with repeated pneumonias and hospitalizations for him, summer was very welcome. My husband strung a hammock across a few trees on our property and I decided to cuddle with my son there one day, even though I was late on a book and had a million things to do. He loved it! We read stories from a stack of books for awhile then just listened to the various sounds of the neighborhood while I described the clouds, the sky, the sunlight gleaming on new leaves for my son who has very low vision. I have hundreds of memories like that with each of my children but that one is particularly special.

Tell us about a place that brings you joy, or is attached to a memory of joy.

My entire family vacationed at a beachhouse in IMG_5025Hawaii this summer and the entire week was joy at its most pure – early mornings on a deserted beach with the surf and the seabirds, afternoons stretched out on chaises while we listened to slack-key guitar music above the soothing sound of the sea, evenings where we grabbed a meal of delectable garlic shrimp from a food truck and sat on the beach to enjoy every messy bite. It was the perfect vacation and I can’t wait to go back!

Tell us about a sound that brings you joy.

Many sounds bring me joy – sweet, mellow jazz, the wind rustling the palm trees outside a beachhouse (see above!), my kids’ spontaneous, uncontrollable laughter. But one sound I really love is the click of my fingers on the keyboard. No other sound makes me happier, especially when the words are flowing and the story is coming together. I’m a very fast typist (100wpm, on average) so the keyboard can rock once I get going!

What recent book have you read that brought you joy. (Or a book you read in your life that brought you so much joy you’ve never forgotten it.) Why?

I’ve never forgotten the joy I felt reading Anne of Green Gables for the first time. I was ten years old and I read each page with such delight, completely enraptured by the story and the characters – and, of course, the growing romance between Anne Shirley and Gilbert. As soon as I finished, I immediately re-read it!

And for fun, the joy of choice ~

Pick your Chris! Chris Hemsworth, Chris Pine, Chris Pratt, Chris Rock, Chris Evans or Christopher Plummer (circ. 1964 aka Capt. Von Trapp?) – trying for a little diversity! ;o)

My favorite Chris is … Chris Pratt. He makes me laugh every time he shows up in a scene, which is the most attractive trait a man can possess, as far as I’m concerned.

RaeAnne is generously giving away 3 copies of REDEMPTION BAY, as well as three hand-beaded bookmarks.

RaeAnne ThayneRaeAnne Thayne is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than fifty books. Her books have won many honors, including four RITA nominations from Romance Writers of America, the Colorado Romance Writers Award of Excellence and a career achievement award from Romantic Times magazine. Her stories – described as “poignant and sweet,” with “beautiful, honest storytelling (that) goes straight to the heart” have sold more than two million copies and have been translated into more than a dozen languages. She finds inspiration from the beautiful northern Utah mountains, where she lives with her family.

Buy RaeAnne’s books:

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