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Beneath the Covers,Past
A Romance Column

Time Flies in Romance….
By Carol Ann Culbert Johnson

Well another year is upon us, and as I write this article, Thanksgiving was yesterday, so that makes today November 27, 2015, a day after Thanksgiving! Time flies when you’re having fun, and the days, weeks, months, and years don’t wait for anyone.

2016 is upon us, and romance is still evident. I’m a romantic junkie, of course. I still believe in that happily ever after no matter what the world is bringing with so much violence in my City of Chicago, and all over this entire world. I pray for peace and the violence to end every day in my prayers.

I find comfort in my romance novels---I escape into the world of fantasy where the hero meets the heroine, the chemistry is there, and the two find themselves, slowly but surely falling in love.

As I write this article, I’m not in love with anyone, but I still believe in love----despite my romantic tendencies. There is love all around me with couples, and I celebrate in their love, knowing that someone has found the true happiness of marriage and romance with all the trials and tribulations.
I still believe in my romantic journey of seeing that man across the room, and he seeing me across the room, and our eyes meet, the sensations of fire bubble up in our bodies, and the heat is evident. I know when this happens, I had finally found my soul mate.

You might be saying that she’s fifty-three years old, so how long is she going to wait for her prince charming, and her soul mate? I am laughing now. “I’m going to wait until Jesus’ comes back to claim us all, and if I’m not in love by then, then I know it’s okay. Everyone isn’t meant for true love.

A friend of mine is fifty-nine years old, and she never thought she’d get married. This would be her first wedding, and after she turned fifty she just gave up. I remember her words to me. “I’m over fifty now, and the men my age will be looking for twenty-five year olds, so my clock has ticked. I’m destined to be alone in this world, and I’m okay about it. I’ll join the bang wagon of reading romance novels, picturing me as a heroine, and my hero proposing to me. I’m good.”

I knew she wasn’t good, but she really had no choice in the matter. At the time, she truly felt that her clock was closed. What did she have to look forward to at fifty years of age? If you read romance novels from Harlequin Romance, which is my favorite, of course, the heroines are usually twenty-five years of age, and not more than thirty, but the hero’s are older. What did my friend have to look forward too? I just prayed for her because I knew the feeling. I wasn’t her age yet, but I still had the same kind of feelings creeping into my mind too.

If my friend hadn’t found love and she was fifty-nine, what did that tell me and I was fifty-three. I shook my head in sorrow. My friend and I were great women, and men were stupid because they missed out on two great women, but that’s okay, and I really mean it.

Suffice to say, six months later, I had another conversation with my friend and she gave me the news that she was engaged. I was stunned. My friend was engaged to be married next year, 2016. I asked her to give me the details. I was surprised, but very thrilled for my friend. This is what she told me:
She went to a friend’s wedding, and there was a gentlemen there who was a cousin to the groom. The two of them met at the buffet line, and they ended up grabbing a table, and talking for hours. After the wedding was over, they exchanged numbers, and their conversations increased over the days they chatted---mostly every day after that wedding. Now she was engaged, and very happy. He was sixty years old to her fifty-nine. Isn’t love grand?

Let’s say the two ended up falling in love, and marriage is on the horizon. Just when you give up on love you meet someone at a wedding, so never say never because romance can embark on your life when you least expect it. My friend gave up, but now she’s happily engaged, and I’ll be front and center at her marriage next year.

I didn’t see the need to wait as their ages were a factor, but my friend wanted to get to know as much as possible about the man of her dreams, and a year was their destination. So next May, 2016, I will be at a wedding with a smile on my face, and plenty of tissues in my hand. I’m thrilled for my friend, and I wish her and her fiance every happiness they can find, and then some. I’m sad it’s not me, but again, maybe I’m put on this earth to write these romantic articles, and read romance? Who knows?

As 2016 make its appearance, what are we going to do? Romance novels are captivating and even better than they were before. I love reading, my favorite romance novels, Kimani Press from Harlequin. Not only are the book covers enticing, but the element of the stories are more bold and modern, and you can relate to the hero and the heroine because reality is a reality check. These novels gets better and better, and I look forward to my four monthly novels to keep me warm at night, and my romantic tendencies fulfilled.

So forfeit the tension of this world with all the violence, and settle down into the world of romance--read a pure romance novel, and fall in love with the hero and heroine as they face trials and tribulations---until they reach the tunnel of happily ever after.

It’s almost Christmas and this is the time for love and kindness and romance in the colors of red, and green. Romance is all over the place in the love we have for each other and the gifts we share-----the creator of us all special day of December 25th. What a romantic day in itself when we celebrate the life of the all-mighty God!

I promise you won’t be disappointed, so take a romantic ride with me, and enjoy a romance novel today. What are you waiting for?

Romance Serials: The Best in the Land
By Carol Ann Culbert Johnson

I love reading romance, and for those who read my column on, you know this fact about me. Romance to me is the rule of love, and finding that one true love. Do you still believe in romance?

In the romance arena there are plenty of books to keep your faith in love alive especially with Harlequin, and other publishers. I love the Kimani series of romance by Harlequin, and one of my favorite authors is Brenda Jackson. She has a series with the Westmoreland family. I have to tell you that this is the best romance series in the world and then some. Brenda Jackson is one of the best romance writers in this century.

I love romance, and I love romance serials---because they continue a trend of minor characters, and so forth, and the Westmoreland series, you all have to get on that bandwagon of reading. It begins with the first series in the book. Here’s a caption of the best series written:

• Delaney’s Desert Sheikh (Book 1)
• A Little Dare (Book 2)
• Thorn’s Challenge (Book 3)
• Stone Cold Surrender (Book 4)
• Riding the Storm (Book 5)
• Jared’s Counterfeit Fiancée (Book 6)
• The Chase is On (Book 7)
• The Durango Affair (Book 8)
• Ian’s Ultimate Gamble (Book 9)
• Seduction, Westmoreland Style (Book 10)
• Spencer’s Forbidden Passion (Book 11)
• Taming Clint Westmoreland (Book 12)
• Cole’s Red-Hot Pursuit (Book 13)
• Quade’s Babies (Book 14)
• Tall, Dark…Westmoreland! (Book 15)
• Westmoreland’s Way (Book 16)
• Wrapped in Pleasure (Book 17)
• Hot Westmoreland Nights (Book 18)
• What a Westmoreland Wants (Book 19)
• A Wife for a Westmoreland (Book 20)
• The Proposal (Book 21)
• Feeling the Heat (Book 22)
• Texas Wild (Book 23)
• One Winter’s Night (Book 24)
• Zane (Book 25)
• Canyon (Book 26)
• Stern (Book 27)
• The Real Thing (Book 28)
• The Secret Affair (Book 29)

As you can see this is a remarkable and long series. Ms. Jackson started with a 21-series collection, but the expansion has grown to 29 books. These books cover romance, and mostly family. There are parents, brothers, sisters, and cousins, aunts, uncles, friends, and the list is endless. The Westmoreland family are always together---bonding-- and they have each other’s back.

I love this series because of the romance, but my family is so dysfunctional, that it’s nice to read about a family who has all the qualities and commitment that rides the boats of love and kindness. I know this is fiction, but these series of books are about reality too.

While I love reading about the romance, I also love reading about the conflicts, the sibling rivalry, the anger, the hurt and the pain. I can relate to every story in the series, and I recommend reading the entire series from book 1 to book 29. You will read book 1, and end up reading the series like I did. I started off with book 1, and I was anxious to find out what happened in book 2. Ms. Jackson always contemplate the latter characters in the books before and after, so you get a chance on finding out did the heroine and hero have their wedding, or is a baby on the way?

Again, I can’t get enough of about this romance series. Ms. Jackson makes you get into the characters and dream about what your life could be like, or want to be like. I want to be like the heroine or hero. I want a family like the heroine or hero.

The Westmoreland’s is a powerful and rich family, and the parents are the leaders of the pack. It’s a mechanics of love, friendship, loyalty and honesty. So finish reading this column and then click on amazon, and begin your fascination with the Westmorland’s series by Brenda Jackson.

Take a ride with me and romance! Why not! What else is on your agenda?

2015 Past Columns

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