Susan Elizabeth Phillips – Romance Represents

Hi friends!

Welcome to Read-A-Romance Month 2016!

If you’re a new visitor to RARM, I hope you’ll come back every day in August to read all the wonderful pro-romance posts this year. Check out the full calendar here. You can also find links to the last three years’ posts from the boxes in the sidebar, and if you’d like, you can follow RARM on Facebook. Enjoy August!


Powerful, Valuable Romance

#LoveRomance?First Star

Of course I #LoveRomance. 

What’s not to love?!

If you follow me at all, you’ve probably seen my quote, “Life is too short to read depressing books!”  I firmly believe that.

Too often, literary fiction is depressingas if storytelling is only valuable if people suffer, or life is only real if it’s filled with tragedy.

I’m all for reading uplifting, affirming books, and I most often find those in romance and women’s fiction. These are the stories of love, community, and friendship that make the most sense to me and represent my values. 

What is more valuable, more powerful, than that?

There is nothing better than finishing a romance or women’s fiction novel that is beautifully written, makes me think, makes me feel, and, in the end, gives me a bit more faith in my world and the people in it.

Well, actually, that’s not completely true.

I do love those novels, but to be honest, when I finish them, I feel let down.

When I read a great book, I don’t want it to be finished. I’m so completely wrapped up in the story, the characters, and the world that I don’t want to come out of it.

That’s my greatest compliment to a book—that I’m disappointed when it’s over.

And usually the books that make me feel that way have romance in them, women’s friendships, and definitely a happy ending.

SEP recommends:

Monica McInerney     (at Amazon)

Monica is a wonderful Australian writer who’s well known in her own country, but not so much in ours. Her book, HELLO FROM THE GILLESPIES, is on my keeper shelf.

Kristin Higgins      (at Amazon)

I’m loving Kristin Higgins books. She has a wonderful “voice.”  

Jayne Ann Krentz     (at Amazon)

I love the way Jayne Ann Krentz delivers great romantic suspense without the gore.

Robyn Carr       (at Amazon)

And I can’t wait to dive into the newest Robyn Carr. 

Questions for the Author:

Tell us about a moment in your life when you felt romance surrounding you.

Most embarrassing confession ever!  The single most romantic moment of my life I spent with my friend Helen instead of my husband, Mr. Bill.  Helen and I were in Granada, Spain, sitting outside in a restaurant sipping wine and watching the sun set over the Alhambra.  I will absolutely never forget it. And the thing is, I have a sneaky suspicion it wouldn’t have been nearly as romantic with Mr. Bill.  We’d have been talking about kids, golf, writing, the stuff of everyday life, instead of simply taking in the amazing experience. Sigh… 

Tell us about someone special in your life (other than your partner) with whom you share romance.

My friend Claire and I fell in love with historical romances in the late 1970s. That’s when we decided to sit down and write one. And, much to our surprise, we completed it.  The Copeland Bride, which was published by Dell in 1982 and is (mercifully) out of print.  

Do you have a place in the world or a sound that you equate with romance?

The smell of charcoal heating up on an outside grill. It was a few days before our wedding, and Mr. Bill and I were checking out our new apartment. We went outside in the postage stamp, enclosed patio. Someone was grilling nearby, and this incredible sense of yearning, love, hope for the future washed over me. To this day, the smell of charcoal brings that back to me. 

Who is your (or a) favorite romantic couple?

 Historically, it would have to be John and Abigail Adams. But I also have to say there are some political marriages I find incredibly romantic. To be bipartisan about it, Bess and Harry Truman, George and Laura Bush, Michelle and Barack Obama, Gerald and Betty Ford.  (Not, alas, Eleanor and Franklin or Ike and Mamie.) 

Tell us about your dream date. 

I’d like to take Mr. Bill to that same restaurant in Granda, Spain, and see how it would play out.  (See above)


SEP is generously giving away two hardcover copies of FIRST STAR I SEE TONIGHT as soon as they’re available (US only, apologies to international friends.)

To enter the giveaway, leave a comment below or on the *Facebook post you’ll find here (or both – Share the Love!) ;o) by 11:59 pm PST August 18, 2016.   Good luck!

(*You don’t have to like the FB page, but we do recommend it. It’s easier to contact you if you win. Also consider joining the Read-A-Romance Book Club page, where we discuss romance of all kinds and will have drawings and events throughout the year.)

#LoveRomance  #HappyReading

SEP New Publicity PhotoSusan Elizabeth Phillips is an international bestseller whose books have been published in over 30 languages. Susan is the creator of the sports romance–especially noteworthy since she is completely inept at any sport involving a ball, although she is a brisk walker. And quite good at Jeopardy.

The newest of her Chicago Stars books, FIRST STAR I SEE TONIGHT, will be on sale August 23, 2016.

Learn more:     |     Facebook     |     Twitter


Buy Susan’s books:

availableon-amazon       availableon-nook    availableon-kobo

*Please note that the Amazon button, most cover images and many text links connect to a Read-A-Romance Month affiliate portal. Thanks so much for your help & support!

  • catslady

    Another author I enjoy 🙂 and I like the authors she mentioned too! Thanks for the post.


    I think you should take Mr Bill to that restaurant in Spain, and I bet it could become a very romantic scene for the two of you. I agree with you about books. I am past the point of wanting to spend time reading books that pull me down. I want the romance or the mystery, but I want to laugh along the way. I want characters who are people with whom I would like to spend an afternoon. It seems that there are so many dramatic downer moments out there in the real world,,,,,why not jump into a book which will give me smiles and warmer heart.

  • cheryl c.

    I agree with you that life is too short to read depressing books. I need a HEA ending in all the books I read.

  • b.reading

    The Alhambra is so romantic! I had a similar experience with my three best ladies in Scotland recently. Sorry, husband!

  • Linda Henderson

    Ever once in a while I’ll read a non fiction book that really depresses me but I can’t do that very often. I’m with you, I want a book that when it’s done I’m upset because I want it to go on and on.

  • Molly

    I read a lot of different types of books. I agree too I want to want more even though the book is over

  • Andrea Sommers

    I think I may have to track down “The Copeland Bride”… but I won’t hold it against her. 🙂

  • Sue G.

    I absolutely adore your books and I just found out from your newsletter that you are coming to Ohio in November! I am beyond excited! 🙂

  • Meghan Stith

    Ok. I am a HUGE fan of Susan Elizabeth Phillips. “It Had to Be You” is one of my most favorite novels of all-time. ALL. TIME! So funny, clever and steamy! “Kiss An Angel” was good one too! The scene with the ice cream gets me every time.

  • Debbie Fuller

    You are a new to me author, meaning I’ve heard of you but haven’t read yet. I have just moved you to the top of my TBR pile as this post is exactly my feelings for reading romance. Thank you for the words to match my feelings.

  • Eileen Aberman Wells

    Thank you for sharing your take on love. Two of your recommended authors are among my favorites!! Kristan Higgins and Robyn Carr are true story tellers who weave magic with their words. I loved what you said about how you feel when you finish a great book. That is the exact feeling I have. I don’t want it to end and I don’t want to leave either. BTW, I love your books and you are among my favorite authors too. <3

    • Stephanie Stevens Chalbeck

      I agree 100%!

  • Bernadette Long

    I started re-reading all of the Chicago Stars books so I would be ready for the new one! These are so much fun to read some and there is always a Happily ever after!

  • Landin

    I can’t wait for this to come out, I always love SEP’s characters, they feel REAL. They’re flawed, they’re charming, and they’re just always perfect.

  • Claire Gilless

    just started reading your books this summer and love the humor that seems to be in all … halfway through the Chicago Stars and really enjoying the series – thanks

  • Jami Birnbaum

    I love that the 3 authors you mentioned are part of my go-to list of authors (you are on that list, too…) I cannot wait to read FIRST STAR I SEE TONIGHT. It feels like it’s been forever since HEROES ARE MY WEAKNESS (which I loved!!!)

  • Pamby50

    I love your Chicago Stars series. It always reminded me of the Chicago Bears. I wished that I was plugged in more. I would have gone to Anderson’s to meet you. I look forward to The First Star I See Tonight. Beautiful cover!

  • Ellen

    I do love a HEA. I enjoy your books, and am happy to see your recommend Kristan Higgins and Jayne Ann Krentz. (A couple of my favorites, too)

  • Quinn Fforde

    I like your list of political romances. Too often we think of Hollywood couples, but the political couples leave more behind, it seems.

  • Edwina Bailey Brown

    My first book by Susan Elizabeth Phillips was Ain’t She Sweet? and I’ve been an avid reader of her books ever since then. I’ve have re-read every book I own by her countless times and to say that the Chicago Stars series is one of my favorite series would be an understatement.

  • Anna

    I love that you chose presidential couples as your favorites. They definitely don’t get enough love! 🙂

  • Kim

    I’m looking forward to reading First Star I See Tonight. It will be nice going back to your football series.

  • rebecca moe

    I can’t wait until your new book comes out! Thank you so much for sharing 🙂

  • All four of those authors Sep mentions I love and enjoy too. My copy of First Star I See Tonight just left the Book Depository so happy about that!

  • Chanpreet

    I’ve never been to Spain, but it is one of the countries I’d love to visit. And I thought I’d read all of your books, but now that I know there’s one more out there, I’m going to have to find it and read it!

  • Lisa Hutson

    OH SEP, I also love Kristin Higgins & Robyn Carr!!
    And I agree, life is too short to read a book that you don’t love. That doesn’t give you happiness and peace….why I also love romance and womens fic.
    In the political list, how about Ron and Nancy Reagan??

  • Sharlene Wegner

    Life is definitely too short to read depressing books! I refuse to read books without a happy ending! Angst is OK, as long as it works out in the end!

  • donnas

    What a great post. I completely agree. If I want to be depressed I can easily watch the news, there is rarely anything good on there. I read to relax and enjoy myself and to feel better.

  • Ann Mettert

    I love your writing. 🙂

  • Melisa Safchinsky

    Love Kristan Higgins’ books!

  • Mary McCoy

    Susan, I love your books, they never fail to uplift!

  • Cindy A

    I’ve re-read your Natural Born Charmer a couple of times. Who could resist the beaver suit, and even better the relationships between the characters. Not all are the “young ones”.