Sunday, March 24, 2013

Mystery vs. Romance…Who has The Following?

Which do you prefer?  Do you yearn for a good romance as two characters play out their love-hate relationship throughout the book or do you enjoy burying yourself in a good mystery you can attempt to solve right along with the main character? 
Maybe you like both?

How about a mysterious romance?  Actually, that might be interesting.
Or possibly a romantic mystery?

A long time ago, I used to read romance novels, right along with mysteries, thrillers and horror books.  My preference, when it came to romance, were books written by Danielle Steel, Nora Roberts, Lavyrle Spencer and such others like them.  But over the many years I’ve been reading, I’ll admit I’ve become bored with romance novels.  If they have humor and a bit of mystery, it helps to hold my interest but typically the romance is overpowering and there isn’t much mystery when the boys always gets the girl. 
Based on that, I’ve shelved romance novels when it comes to the books I plan to read.  But I am curious which genre might have the most followers.  There are many readers out there and many authors to support their need but overall, which genre can come up with the most responsive following than the other?

The reason I’m asking is this…I’ve been keeping an eye on the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award contest as each Quarter-Finalist’s excerpt has been made available for readers such as yourself to download, read and review.  It’s my understanding that our place as a Semi-Finalist in this contest will depend on how Publisher’s Weekly rates our books as a whole now that the books are undergoing a PW review, but readers do have the option of reading the excepts the Amazon expert reviewers provided feedback on which in turn made each of us a Quarter-Finalist.
Do you know what I’ve noticed with regard to the contest? 

There are 500 total excerpts available for you to download; 100 excerpts for each genre to include mystery/thriller, romance, young adult, general fiction and science fiction.    I don’t know that the books are listed in any particular order and in fact, the order does seem to change when I go back to view them again.  But what I did notice was that out of the first 200 books, the romance category appears to be ahead of the game when it comes to reviews.  At least when it comes to reviews in double digits.  General fiction is a close second, young adult and mystery/thriller have about half the amount of double-digit reviews and science fiction is way behind.  Many books have a few reviews or up to a handful while many others have not received any yet.  I do hope that will change before the results are made available the middle of next month.  Those reviews do help the authors quite a bit and are obviously very useful. 
If you want to see for yourself, use this search for books on

You might wonder why I’m even discussing this particular discovery but if you think about it, I have a very good reason for it.  When the top Finalist in each category is finally revealed, do you know who will be casting their votes for the Grand Prize Winner?  You will!  Amazon customers will be able to read and review each excerpt for each Finalist and cast their vote for their favorite. 

At the rate the reviews are coming in up to this point, romance appears to have a larger following or at least a larger following willing to leave reviews.  So my request to you is this…let’s make this an even race.  Let’s show the authors in all categories that there are enough readers out there to read and review what each of us has put so much work into with the hope of some useful feedback and a chance at a terrific prize. 
If you want to check out my entry, click here:

As with all entries, you can download the full excerpt for free.  Check it out…if you like mysteries, start with mine and go onto the next.  Don’t forget the general fiction titles, the young adult, science fiction and yes, even the romance.  Of course, if my title were to end up as one of the Finalists up for voting, you can bet I’ll be asking you to vote for mine.  But for the time being, take a look at what I and the other Quarter-Finalists have offered up for this contest and give us your feedback, your ratings and your support.



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