May 9 2014 7:03am

What Books Do You Remember Your Mom Reading?

This weekend we celebrate moms, and for many of us, our mothers were the first ones who introduced romance novels into our lives. Or maybe they would never read those kinds of books, so you found them to see why she wouldn't touch them.

No matter how you came to reading romance, chances are your mom had something to do with it.

So what books do you remember your mom reading when you were growing up?

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1. Scarlettleigh
My mother loved to read so that is probably why I am a big reader. She loved romantic suspense -- although back then it was PG on romance.

Helen MacInnes was a big favorite of hers and I would find her re-reading one of her books even though there were other books in the house.
She wasn't as hooked on happy ending as I am BUT she would read the first couple of pages, and then read the end. I always kidded her about that - why read the book if she knew the ending. But she stated it didn't matter -- it was the journey that was important, not the ending.

She really liked Sidney Shelton and Mary Stewart. She read Phyllis Whitney too.

After I started reading romance novels she would pretty much read what I brought home, or what my aunt brought over. My aunt subscribed to Harlequin and she would bring sacks of books in with books by Betty Neels, Nora Roberts, Janet Dailey.

We both pretty much read accross the genres except for science fiction.
Darlene Marshall
3. DarleneMarshall
My mother died when I was a little girl, and with five children she didn't have much time for reading. However, she made a deal with my cousin, who repped for a children's book distributor: Chuck would give her all his sample books when he was finished with them. We had a working-class home with a library full of beautifully illustrated histories, folklore, mythology, tall tales and more. Long after my mother's death I had books to comfort me and give me a connection to her, and they spurred my love of reading.
Megan Frampton
4. MFrampton
Like you two, my mom was a reader as well--she read anything that came into the house, but she really liked romantic suspense and thrillers. There was a time during which my dad did a very long commute (leaving Monday, returning home Friday), and I remember sitting with our feet on our woodstove reading during those weeks, not talking, just sitting and reading. It's a good memory.
5. Melanie S. (@mlsimmons)
My mom was never a romance reader that I know of. I remember her reading Stephen King and Robin Cook, which is probably where I got my love for horror which quickly became more towards the paranormal, though I still love King's older works. For me, the more romance reads came from reading PNR and then finding people who recommended "normal" romances to me as well. I will say that I still read more with paranormal characters than human.
Pen Singleton
6. PenSingleton
My mom worked in hospitals when I was growing up and really liked Robin Cook 's medical thrillers. She also read Sidney Sheldon and Judith Krantz and Harold Robbins. She and my dad both loved reading & got lots of suggestions from their co workers. One of Mommie's co workers suggested her first Sandra Brown book which became a favorite of the whole family. Her taste in books definitely informed/shaped my taste in books.
7. flip58
My mom read everything, historicals, mysteries, bestsellers,women's fiction, romances, classical literature, and more. She didn't read fantasy or science fiction. I developed that passion on my own. She did not censor my reading. I could read anything that I wanted. She created my love for reading. I remember receiving Little House in the Big Woods one Christmas. Books are still the very best.
Jena Briars
8. CutMyTeethOnKleypas
I think my mom read an oddball mix - one romance drama I recall her reading/enjoying was Like Water for Chocolate. And then there was the summer we read Rebecca and watched BBC's P&P over and over again, because Darcy in water.
Melodie McCutcheon
9. Dragonkitty
I don't remember any one book specifically, as my mom is an avid reader, but what I remember fondly are the brown paper bags. My mother and all her friends shared their books. None of them showed up without a brown paper bag grocery bag full of books, none left without a brown paper bag. Every visit included the ceremonial "Have you read this one? How about this one? This one is wonderful!" as the outgoing bag was filled. It left the childhood impression that books were things of joy to be spread about.
Jennifer Proffitt
10. JenniferProffitt
Like a lot of you, my mom was a reader but not of romance novels. She read Iris Johansen, Sue Grafton, and Janet Evanovich (so more on the romantic suspense of mystery I guess...). So I never got my love of romance novels from her, but when I was away at college, my mom did sample from MY bookshelves, and I found a lot of my romance novels on her nightstand.
11. lauralee1912
My mom liked reading the most popular books, but wasn't much of a romance reader. She belonged to the Book of the Month club and would get recommendations from my English professor sister in law for literary fiction. The only authors in common we read in her later years were Anne Rivers Siddons and Mary Kay Andrews. When she passed away, we had a hard time giving away over 2000 hardbound books! She had a complete collection of Anne Rice books.

However, I was caught reading her copies of Valley of the Dolls and Peyton Place as a young girl and got in t-r-o-u-b-l-e as young ladies didn't read those books.

I didn't start reading romance novels regularly until I was a newlywed and my elderly neighbor, who became an adopted Grandma to me, Belva, started lending me her books. She introduced me to romance novels and I have been hooked since. I have fond memories of sitting in her apartment eating cookies or cheese straws and talking about the latest book we shared. We especially loved historicals set in the time of the Plantagenets.
12. Cyranetta
My mom was a romance reader of authors like Emilie Loring and Grace Livingston Hill, but in her later years she adored the non-suspense novels of Nora Roberts. After a post-heart-surgrey stroke, when she never really spoke or recovered enough to leave the nursing home, the one thing she seemed to focus on and appreciate was Dad reading Nora Roberts aloud to her (and it gave him a way to pass the time when he visited her daily).
13. willaful
My mom isn't at all a romance person. I was quite startled recently to learn that she liked Janet Evanovich, but I guess they're mysteries to her. Mostly she read Science Fiction when I was growing up. Her main reading influence on me was introducing me to Agatha Christie.
14. Kahintenn
My mother has always been a voracious reader, and while she would probably say she doesn't read much romance, I know she likes Nora Roberts, Debbie Macomber, Maeve Binchy, and others of that ilk. I know I inherited my love of reading from her. Despite our being fairly poor, my mom always made it clear to me that college was the next step after high school, and so it happened with a first semester scholarship and a lot of hard work, and high test scores helped by a terrific vocabulary from all those books! My mom's example and encouragement made all the difference to me.
15. Kareni
Hmm, I remember being forbidden to read the Angelique books by
Sergeanne Golon before I was sixteen when I found them at about age 12. Naturally, I promptly read them! I assume my mother had read them otherwise why would they have been in the house. I remember my parents, sister, and I passing around The Other Side of Midnight by Sidney Sheldon when I was in 8th grade.
16. Janga
My best friend swears my mother marked me as a reader because she read the KJV Bible and her beloved Victorian poets to me before I was born. When I was very young, she shared with me the books she loved best growing up--Louisa May Alcott's books, Lucy Maud Montgomery's Anne Shirley books, and Gene Stratton Porter's Freckles and Girl of the Limberlost. The summer I was ten I was allowed to read any book from her bookshelves. That's when I discovered popular and literary romance. I read Austen, Scott, and the Brontes, but I also read Emilie Loring, Grace Livingston Hill, Faith Baldwin, D. E. Stevenson, and Elizabeth Cadell. And I discovered mystery writers like Agatha Christie, John Dickson Carr, and Gladys Mitchell among her books. I did a six-part blog post last year about my mother's books. Many of them can still be found on my bookshelves.
Mary Lynne Nielsen
17. emmel
My mom was never a romance reader. Newspapers, magazines, and Reader's Digest Condensed Books are what I remember around the house. And my "banned" books were Looking for Mr. Goodbar and Our Bodies, Ourselves. Go figure. Of course, I read both instantly when I went to college.

But she always encouraged my love of reading. I have her 1937 edition of Gone With the Wind and cherish it!
Nicole Leapheart
18. BoxyFrown
My mom was part of a book club where she would get a 4pack of Zebra historical romances every month. I would sneak and speed read them, careful not to mess up the spines, and return them before she was any wiser. She also read the Bible almost every night, the National Enquirer, and Jackie Collins books. My household was sooo 80s.
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