Guest Lesbrarian Relme reviews Radclyffe’s romances


Note: Oh no! Another post that was swallowed in the drafts!

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Thanks for the review, Relme! You can find her at her tumblr, Reluctantly, Me. If you’d like to submit a guest review for the Lesbrary, email me at!

When I read for pleasure, I want escapist entertainment

    • Minimal drama/angst
    • OK with predictability as long as I care about the characters
    • Care enough to keep reading but not so much it keeps me from sleeping at night
    • Want to feel good if I think about it days/weeks later

Radclyffe writes everything from erotica to romances

    • Even branching into paranormal with new series
    • In romances continues chars through other books
    • Sometimes as a series
    • Sometimes as secondary chars in other books

My favorite lesbian romances are like really well developed light erotica stories with characters I care about and a decent plot

    • Buy it for the relationships not the plot
    • Writes characters I care about and want to follow
    • Crafts good relationships
      • Platonic
      • Sexual

Writes about lesbians

    • Unapologetic lesbians
    • Not queer; lesbian
    • Few gay men, bis, trans* (I can only think of one gay man)
    • Even coming out stories are about lesbians, not angsting straight women
    • Coming out is an awakening not a conversion
    • Professionals in 20s to 30s
    • Almost always one of the primary chars is a dr or surgeon
    • Main chars all hott
    • Most are child free but some have children
    • Not overly tender/sentimental

Romances almost always have some hyper-driven/broken/isolated/alienated functional recluse as one of the main chars

    • Even if the brokenness is only self-perceived
    • Loss
    • Death
    • Break up
    • Disability/illness/injury
    • Broken main character isn’t rescued as much as discovered/uncovered

Friendship and chosen family are big subtexts

    • It’s a whole lesbian family + chosen family
    • With and without kids
    • Different ages, incl. mentoring

Quality of books can be shockingly uneven

    • Some are real clunkers
    • Dull
    • Undeveloped
    • Some are repeats of existing books (Trauma Alert and Fated Love are darn close to the same book)
    • Characters repeat (witty best friend)

Some clunky writing

    • Sex scenes get repetitive
    • Lots of repetitive description
    • Hard fist of arousal
    • Suddenly, painfully/ terribly, painfully/etc.

3 Replies to “Guest Lesbrarian Relme reviews Radclyffe’s romances”

  1. Wendy

    What is an unapologetic lesbian and why can’t someone who is trans* be one? I am trans* and I never apologize for being a lesbian.