Roxanne St. Claire – Joyful Tears, Great Romance

August is Read-A-Romance Month.

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I hope you’ll visit ReadARomanceMonth.com every day in August to see what 93+ of your favorite authors have to say about the Joy of Romance.

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Do you love Romance? Let’s celebrate. xo

Tears of Joy

Truth be told, I’m a crier. Almost any heartfelt emotion – from sadRoxanneStClaire_BarefootwithaBodyguard_HRness to surprise, from anger to angst, even a moment of holding someone dear in my arms — can have me reaching for the tissues and hoping I wore waterproof mascara.  My mother used to say that I cried every day of my life until I was fourteen, and then I may have only skipped a few days in between then and now.  I’m so used to the lump in my throat and the dampness in my eyes, that sometimes I don’t even notice if a poignant TV commercial or a heart-wrenching ballad has me blinking away the tears.

Despite hundreds of studies, no one has really discovered a definitive reason why we cry, but no one disputes the therapeutic benefits of a good cry.  It’s said that tears actually contain a painkilling substance and are closely linked to chemicals like serotonin in our brain, and one Yale scientist claims crying is a natural function to restore emotional equilibrium.  But the tears that confound science the most are the ones I treasure so much that I actually anticipate shedding them – tears of joy.

Joyful tears have a different feeling and flavor, I think, than any other kind of tears.  They Barefoot Whitewell up from a place of promise and hope, as opposed to most crying, which is our human reaction to sadness and frustration.

I relish tears of joy, and I’m sure this is why I write romance for a living.  It’s certainly why I’ve read romance novels since I was about ten years old.  Because  sweet, satisfying, soul-twisting happy tears are the reward for suffering with two people who have battled their way over a mountain of conflict have finally won the love war.  If I don’t wipe a tear (or ten) at that Happy Ever After promise, then the author, I’m sorry to say, hasn’t done her job for me.

And the same is true of my own books.  I better get a little choked up while writing that emotional climax and not JUST because The End is near!  If I’m dry-eyed during the ultimate declarations of love between a hero and a heroine, then something isn’t right. Either the scene is set up wrong, the dialogue isn’t ringing true, or the love just wasn’t hard-won enough.  I often write, rewrite, re-rewrite, revise and even polish an entire book many times before I even tackle that all-important HEA scene.  Because I know, once I get the 99% of the story taking us up to that point just right…then the tears of joy are inevitable.  I want to shed them, and I want my reader, no matter how hard-hearted she thinks she is, to at least see the words blur before her eyes during that cherished moment.

So, what about you? Do you shed a few tears of joy at the happiest lines of a romance novel? Can you think of one that just *slayed* you? Please share so we can all have a good, and I do mean good, cry.

Rocki recommends:

Authors who guarantee tears of joy: 

Lily Everett (lilyeverett.com) who writes a deeply emotional and cry-worthy series called Sanctuary Island;

Rachel Hauck  (rachelhauck.com)whose books are inspirational, gorgeous, and weepy; 

Leigh Duncan (leighduncan.com) a brilliant writer who always has me running for tissues on the closing pages.


Questions for the Author:

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

We were given a hint *not* to talk about babies or weddings for this question, but I simply can’t come up with a moment  that rivals the day I was wheeled out of the hospital carrying my daughter. Just a year earlier had been told my chances of having another baby were next to none. I had a healthy son, and I should call myself fortunate.  But God had a different plan and I finally got the daughter I’d dreamed of my whole life.  I remember being pushed down the hall holding a bundle of pink and blubbering like a fool.  “I have my girl. I have my girl.”  I was vibrating with pure, unadulterated joy.  She leaves for college in less than two weeks, so…there will likely be more tears in my very near future. Maybe not so joyous.

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

positano picThis past summer, my family and I took our first overseas vacation, and spent two weeks in Italy.  I’ve wanted to make this trip my entire life – it was the one and only item on my personal “bucket list” – and the entire vacation was made up of one joyous day after another.  On our penultimate night in Positano, we opted for something simple and decided to have room service…on our balcony overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.  The Amalfi Coast sealed itself as a magical place that night, and will always be the site of the best family dinner we’ve ever had.  Just the four of us in one of the most beautiful places on earth.  No makeup or fancy clothes, no restaurant, just us on a night I’ll never forget as long as I live.

Tell us about a sound that brings you joy.

The sound of my kids coming home from school and calling out to me, especially on their last day of the year.  When my son was in kindergarten, he burst through the door on that last day and announced, “Your fuwst gwader is home!” It became a tradition and every year, he’d announce the next school year’s level.  This past May, I was hard at work in my office and he was on his way home from college a few weeks after graduation.  When the door opened, he called out, “Your law student is home!” and  — shocker! — I burst into tears!  It was like I blinked and he went from kindergarten to law school.

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’m going to go back in time a bit to one of my all-time favorite Linda Howard novels, CRY NO MORE. Honestly, were they kidding when they gave the book that title? It should be called CRY FOR DAYS. This book has one of the most emotionally wrenching (and joyous!) endings I’ve ever read. I’m a little choked up just thinking about it. Tears of Joy fans should run for this book.

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)

Chris Pine, hands down!! Those blue, blue eyes and that sexy half smile. Yum!

Roxanne is generously giving away Books to Bring Tears of Joy: a full set of The Barefoot Bay Brides trilogy to one U.S. reader and one set of the Barefoot Bay Billionaires trilogy  to another (apologies to international friends). 

For bio pageRoxanne St. Claire is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of about forty romance, suspense, and young adult novels.  A six-time RITA nominee and one-time winner, she has also been awarded the National Reader’s Choice Award three times, the Booksellers Best, Bookbuyers Best, and many others.  Her novels have been translated into dozens of languages, optioned for film, and appear regularly on a number of bestseller lists.

Visit Roxanne online:

roxannestclaire.com   |    Facebook    |    Twitter.com

Buy Roxanne’s books:

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  • Marissa Yip-Young

    Nice interview

  • Diana Michelle Tidlund

    I want to see The Amalfi Coast before I die some day!

  • Melisa Safchinsky

    I love books that make me cry tears of joy!

  • The last thing that made me cry like a baby? Your post! So much love and joy evident in those heartfelt words. Is it any wonder I adore your books? The granddaughter of my heart will begin her senior year of high school later this week. I’ve photographed her (and her older sister) on their first day of the school year every year since kindergarten. I’m hoping I can stem the flow of tears long enough to take the photos!

  • Carol Opalinski

    Your post made me cry!! Love all your books but I have to say the ending of Now You Die had me wiping a few tears. I love Jack and Lucy. And I felt the same way with Barefoot In the Sun, love Zoe and Oliver.

  • Carol Luciano

    The Almalfi coast is one of the vacations I want to take before I die. The view from your balcony is gorgeous. Thanks for sharing all of your beautiful moments.
    Carol L
    Lucky4750 (at) aol (dot) com

  • Mona Kekstadt

    There is not one book I don’t love of your Rocki…They all touch deep…but I have to say the one with the HEA was BAREFOOT IN LACE…It was one I loved so much…a touching one, and Gussie I related to so very much…

  • Larissa Emerald

    Ok, your post choked me up. Anything to do with kids and family does that to me. I don’t like to cry, though, because if I go over the edge I lose control and I ball, not just weepy tears. I remember when I went to see the movie Romeo and Juliet as a teen. My girlfriend’s brother took us and I cried so hard the whole theater noticed. He swore he would never take us to a movie again. lol But that’s when I decided I wanted happy endings and found the romance genre the perfect fit. I love all the authors you mentioned, as well as your books. And I have every one of them. 🙂 Wonderful post, Rocki!

  • Paula Robinson

    Hi Rocki, tears of joy. Like you, I’m a cryer. I am what I call myself an emotional reader. If a story doesn’t grab me on the emotional level, it’s not for me. I’ve read too many books over the years that make me cry, so it’s hard to even name just one. As a reader, I look for that gut-wrenching emotional climax as well as smaller moments when I am so overcome I need to take a break, albeit a short one, before moving on from that particular scene or moment in a story.

    That’s a great pic of the family with the Mediterranean behind them. Positano is on my “life” list.

    Peace and love,
    Paula R.

  • Marian Griffin

    For you, Italy. For me, Scotland. What a wonderful trip Griff, Casey and I had. We loved every day of it (and it only rained once!) It was a family romance.

  • Marilyn Baxter

    *happy sigh* I just watched an old episode of the Donna Reed show and cried when Jeff worked to earn $5 his mother thought was for a necklace for a girl. Turns out it was for his mom who had been critical of him for riding a bicycle on a treadmill in the rain to earn the money. And I too cried over CRY NO MORE. What an amazing book! My boys are grown and one is married. I still remember when he called and told me I was going to be a grandmother. And the second time around, my granddaughter called and told me she was going to be a big sister.

  • Nora-Adrienne Deret

    Roxie is an amazing Lady, and an amazing author. I was so looking forward to seeing her at RWA-NY a few weeks ago. Imagine my surprise when her face lit up with a huge smile of greeting, and hearing her say she was looking forward to seeing me again. We’d only met once before at RWA-NY2013. We talk on FB all the time though so I guess my face was familiar.

    You can see that famous Roxie smile in my photo below.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/35fba20518b95e0cf711c1f2e3ca1bd4ccd65f679953a861f9b1fe331bbcd1b2.jpg

  • Dorothy Salvagin

    I’m with you on the cry-fest of Howard’s CRY NO MORE. I think I cried first sad then glad tears. I’m looking forward to reading your books.

  • Linda Scarchuk

    Cry? Who me? Yes that is for sure…funny story; my daughter always gets me card…Birthday, Mother’s Day…that end up making me cry. So this year she said she can’t wait to give me my Birthday Card, on 8/20 by the way, because my 16 month old Granddaughter picked it out…and she said she doesn’t think she should even put her name on it…then my son informed me that it is his turn to buy me cards to make me cry. He said he is going to do a “search” for a card guaranteed to make your mother cry. Kids, Really? Love all your books, keep it up!

  • Molly

    I loved your blog.

  • Courtney Cogswell

    I love all of your books sooo much! I’m not a big crier but I am a very interactive reader. I occasionally get choked up or have a tear or two but I love books that make me feel emotions strongly. That is what your books do for me…I will laugh out loud or gasp while reading and my husband always just shakes his head at me. Great post today and I can’t wait to see what new books and adventures you have coming down the pipeline!

  • Ren

    My kids are my world as well. I have two sons and my youngest just left to go to grad school in Michigan (we are in Kansas). I cried my heart out. He’s always been half hour away. My poor hubby took the day off knowing I would be a mess. Italy is on my bucket list. Hopefully for our 30th we will go next year. Thanks for sharing

  • I’m a huge crier too. It shows that we are caring and empathetic for sure … but sometimes I wish I wasn’t so sensitive. Mine is mostly crying for sadness, not at happy moments. Just seeing someone else upset and crying on TV has me bawling my eyes out. 🙂 Oh well, at least no one can say I don’t care about people right?!

  • jcp smith

    I rarely cry but the H in Blackmailed Into Marriage by Lucy Monroe eptitomizes a true man for me

  • Sheila M

    Cry No More — I absolutely agree. I can’t even think of the ending without crying.

  • catslady

    I don’t cry for myself but for others and especially animals or sad stories.

  • Kareni

    I’m another one who cries — you should see me at the opening and closing ceremonies of the Olympics! Your Italy trip sounded wonderful; what a great family experience. Happy writing!

  • Texas Book Lover

    What a great post. Took everything I had to hold back the tears while reading it! Can’t think of any specific book that made me cry while reading it but lots do…including quite a few of yours!

  • Angie Thompson

    I’m a big crier, too. I cried during every major event in my life and my children’s as well. I’m like Truvy in Steel Magnolias; “laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.”

  • Jennifer C

    I loved reading your post! My husband and I cruised a bit through Europe five years ago and just last night we were reminiscing about it. Our favorite place we visited was easily Positano. Seeing the bougainvillea in your picture, I almost knew that was where your were before I read the post. Ahh! Such a beautiful place!

  • Love this post and love you! What a gorgeous family picture!

  • Jerry Marlatt Pierson

    I am a big crier also. Certain people (husband for one) tease me and that just gets me crying harder. I cry at happy things, sad things and especially sad movies or books. Thank you for your giveaway and a chance to win.

  • Connie Saunders

    I am also a crier. There is nothing more enjoyable than tears of happiness and nothing that relieves stress anymore than tears of frustration. A book that can bring me to tears is the sign of a good author! Thanks for your post and giveaway!

  • Christyna

    Tears of joy are the best! Especially as the result of a good romance novel read!

  • Bernadette Long

    What a wonderful vacation! Y’all will have memories forever of your trip to Italy.

  • Jane Bassett-Nelson

    Great blog! I love Roxanne’s book!

  • Karen Mikusak

    Love your books!

  • Diane Sallans

    those are all wonderful Chris’s! Love Chris Pratt’s sense of humor and love of family!

  • Sue G.

    I’m a crier too! EVERY one of your books brings me to tears. I know what you mean about reading Cry No More. When I read K. Bromberg’s Slow Burn that had me crying throughout most of it. It took me a few days to recover from that one!

  • Quinn Fforde

    I’m crying over the stories about your kids. So sweet!

  • Marcy Shuler

    I frequently cry with books. I did today in the dentist’s waiting room while reading on my e-reader. LOL

    I love your books! I’ve read the Barefoot Bay Billionaires series, but still need to read the BB Brides. 😉

  • Michele Hayes

    I do enjoy a good cry, as long as there’s a HEA. Thanks for the chance to win.

  • Stephanie H

    Aww, what a great piece. I’ve read Rocki’s stories for years, they are autobuys.

  • Erin F

    I’m not a crier in fact, I’ve been accused of being heartless! i kind of envy those who can display their emotions a bit more freely, but I am what I am 🙂 must also be a reason why I love a feel good, emotional romance too! thanks for sharing!

  • Sharlene Wegner

    In Kristan Higgins’ The Next Best Thing: “You’re my best friend, Ethan”, I say in a wobbling voice. “I love you, and I’m sorry. Please give me another chance. Please say you will.” I cry every time – I think I’ve read the book 4 or 5 times.

  • Patty Vasquez

    The third book in Julia Quinn’s The Bridgerton’s series, An Offer from a Gentleman, made me cry! Benedict Bridgerton is such a wonderful hero. Eileen Dreyer’s Always a Temptress me cry with joy, also.

  • kirsten west

    It’s not the most recent cry, but every time I read Lover Eternal by J. R. Ward, I cry at the end.

  • Rhi

    There is something very therapeutic about crying. I don’t even know why certain passages make me cry, but it does. The words or the world created or the characters, just do something that will have me cry, every time!

  • Debbie Fuller

    Wow, I really thought there was something wrong with me. Good to know there are other criers out there and that someone is studying this. Loved the post, I have one of your books, think I’ll make it my next read. Thank you for taking the time to post and share.

  • Pamby50

    I remember 2 yrs ago reading a post by you on Read A Romance. From there I started a wonderful journey reading your books starting with Barefoot In The Sand. Tears and sighs.

  • Eileen Aberman-Wells

    I followed your vacation on fb and was thinking that it was somethingmy hubby & I really need to do. I love your story about your son’s last day of school and surprising you this year. I really enjoy your books & facebook posts Roxi!! Thank you for sharing your post.

  • Glenda

    I can relate to how fast time flies by with the kids growing up. I can hardly believe my oldest is a senior in college! (And will most likely be heading across the country for grad school. )

  • Lisa Hutson

    My husband and I spent 2 weeks in Italy last year as well. We did not make it to the amalfi coast. But we saw so much. Made a million memories.
    I am a crier too. Happy, sad and all the rest. Of course, I cry easily during story reading. Which is frustrating as all get out because I cant read when I am crying. Its another reason to love audio books. haha

  • mariannewestrich

    Love your books! So glad you got to have the family trip this year.

  • *waves* Love Rocki’s books and she’s so very nice too. Great post! xo

  • LSUReader

    Always enjoy your books and posts, Rocki. Thanks for visiting.

  • Jillian Rydl

    So excited ! Thanks for the contests.

  • Dawn Anderson

    I enjoy a good cry, whether it’s happy or sad. I tend to cry at movies and books, although the only book that has ‘slayed’ me, although it was not a romance, was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows. J.K. Rowling took a knife, buried it in my heart, and didn’t take it out until the last chapter.

  • I’ll check your books! Thanks for your words!

  • Glenda Hefty

    I’ve loved everyone of your books…enjoy the interview a lot! I cry when reading some books and viewing some things on tv…can be very therapeutic!

  • Joan Varner

    Your books are always a joy and bringing those happy tears at the HEA. I also love your FB posts and look forward to each one to see what you are up to.

  • Ellen

    Loved the Barefoot Brides series. So nice you were able to have such a fun and memorable family vacation. I, too, like Chris Pine.

  • flchen1

    What a wonderful trip it sounds like Italy was! And I love how a simple meal together with the ones you love is one of the best memories of that trip! Thanks for a lovely post, Rocki!

  • Linda Henderson

    I do enjoy a book that makes me laugh and cry. I Laura Kaye’s East Of Ecstasy made me cry. I love the whole series, I probably cried when I read all of them.

  • Kai W.

    I think as I got older, I do shed a tears usually it would be an Ahhhh and Sigh and what a beautiful story.

  • rebecca moe

    OMG, I cry all the time. There’s too many books to list here.

    Also, your story about your son coming home on the last day of school totally made me cry, darn you 🙂

  • Mary McCoy

    Joyful tears are welcome! Thank you!