A lot of nontraditional niches and trends in this week’s Romance Best Seller charts. Plus, the return of some very traditional ones.
First up, some books are crossing the line between the genres and are rising up the charts, despite not being primarily Romance books. These are mostly Mystery/Thriller/Suspense novels and Science Fiction novels, that have a romantic sub-plot. For example, there is The Dark Bones, by Loreth Anne White, and Kendra Elliot’s, A Merciful Promise, which are very clearly labelled as Mystery’s, but thanks to their high selling numbers and Romance Sub-plots they are doing very well on the Romance Charts. Similarly, A. G. Riddle’s books, including Winter World and Pandemic, are not primarily Romance, but are doing well on the chart because it is a smaller part of the novel.
Next up is Romantic Women’s Fiction. Some of these are more or less pure Romance, but others focus on a Coming of Age narrative, or Self Discovery, or History and Time Travel, as their main plot. History and Time Travel has Amy Harmon’s, What the Wind Knows, which might feel like a bit of time travel to those reading this, since it was also on the charts last week. New on the chart, however, is Nora Roberts’, Under Currents. Which features a young man returning to his childhood home after years away after experiencing great trauma. While there he falls for a landscape artist who is hiding from her own issues. And in contrast to the serious nature of both these books, there is Matchmaking for Beginners, a Rom Com with an emphasis on the Com.
Elsewhere on the charts, popular novelists Ruby Dixon and Ilona Andrews have, or are about to, published novels with paranormal or fantasy elements. This will be covered in greater detail later this week in its own genre post, so I will leave a lot of the discussion about this important par of the Romance Genre until then – though it does mean putting a lot of the books on the list to the side for now. Paranormal Romance is extremely popular, as always. Here is the link.
Rather than one clear winner in the niche and trend count this week, there are instead a lot of runners up. One of these is Sports Romance, which has slipped down a few spots since last week when it merited it’s own niche post. The only books that are still on the list from last week are Megan Quinn’s, Locker Room, and Tijan’s, Teardrop Shot.
Meanwhile, making up a lot f the difference in the charts, is Relationships or Marriages of Convenience. These books go from stories of young women inheriting a fiancee, or being inherited themselves by someone else, Accidental Knight: A Marriage Mistake Romance, by Nicole Snow. To having to make a deal with someone to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, Plan B: A Sexy Marriage of Convenience Romcom, by Jana Aston. This niche pulls in a lot of other niches, from Billionaires, Employer/Employee Relationships, Accidental Baby Acquisition, Fake Relationships, Bad Boys, Virgins, and Alphas, and all elements of Dark Romance and Romantic Comedies. For anyone wanting to write in this niche there is a huge amount of choice for what to write about.
Some genres with a few hits on the chart this week are Historical Romance, with An American Duchess, by Caroline Fife, and M is for Marquess, by Grace Calloway. These books are showing that “when in doubt, give someone a title” is still good advice in Historical Romance. Also arriving on the best selling scene, is the Men in Uniform Niche. With Lani Lynn Vale’s second book in the KPD Motorcycle Patrol Series, It Wasn’t Me, and Kelsey Browning’s Firefighter Romance Novel, Tasting Fire, both hitting the chart, it looks like the niche is rising out obscurity again.
So, what to make of this week’s Romance Best Sellers. Mostly, you can tell that every niche and sub-genre can have a Relationship/Marriage of Convenience slipped in without it causing much trouble to the general make up of novel’s other genres. It is extremely versatile. We can also see from this that a lot of books have romantic elements included in the plot and this can be very helpful in pushing them up the Romance Chart, even if they are not primarily that genre.
See anything we didn’t in the results for this week? Think we got something wrong? Leave a comment below!