Fairy tales are finding their ways back into our lives as adults. Much of the H&H Team is obsessed with either Grimm or Once Upon A Time (I fall in the former category), we’re excited for the new Snow White movies—especially seeing Charlize Theron as the Evil Queen—and then there are the fantastic romance novels.
Earlier this fall, Harlequin launched a rapid release of fairy tale-based paranormal romance novels. The Royal House of Shadows series brought together four authors—Gena Showalter, Jill Monroe, Jessica Andersen, and Nalini Singh—to each write about a different sibling from the noble family.
A curse caused the four to leave their homeland, and they need to find their loves as well as their way back home. In addition to taking on a different brother or sister from the royal house, each with a supernatural proclivity like vampirism or magic, each author picked her favorite fairy tale and had her characters find themselves playing out Red Riding Hood, Alice in Wonderland and the like, but this time with sexy results.
In the opening novel, Lord of the Vampires, Gena Showalter uses the Alice in Wonderland theme to introduce readers to this unique and magical world. Her heroine comes from the mortal realm. She has to learn about magic and vampires for the first time. Not only is it a great way to learn about the Royal House of Shadows world and the creatures inhabiting it, but the model helps us suspend disbelief (Also, the hero is a vampire and oh so delicious).
Decisions, decisions. The heroine in the second novel, Jill Monroe’s Lord of Rage, has to choose between a few options—and the biggest, baddest of them is the most appealing. Monroe’s version of Goldilocks and the Three Bears has a few hotties to choose from, and the one we’re interested in could be a bear, could be a man; either way, steamy scenes result.
Lord of the Wolfyn by Jessica Andersen gives the werewolf fans a hero to swoon over. Her modern version of Little Red Riding Hood has a heroine who is willing to kick a little ass and put the secretive lone wolf in his place.
In Lord of the Abyss, which just hit bookstores this month, Nalini Singh takes on Beauty and the Beast. Like with the others, it is not a re-telling of Belle and her Beast. It’s about the dynamic of beauty and beastliness and seeing the latter is really the one to be drawn to. (And this is the woman who brought us Raphael and Dmitri in the Guild Hunter series, so you know she’s crafted a beast you’ll fall over yourself to read.)
The Royal House of Shadows authors provide the sense of wonderment and hope of any fairy tale, but also bring the romance (and sex) adult readers really need to connect.
While Chelsea Mueller runs Vampire Book Club, she won’t turn down a sexy werewolf, demon or faerie. (Her husband often reminds her that she’s taken.)