Today I’m all about Courted from Jennifer Chance
Being a fan of Jennifer Chance’s adult contemporary Rule Breakers series, I was beyond excited to be able to feature her brand new New Adult series Gowns & Crowns. I’ve been sitting on this post for weeks, excitedly waiting to share it with everyone because it’s such a timely subject both with her new book, Courted, and the direction the New Adult “genre” has gone in last year or so.
I enjoyed this book so much that I’ve even added my own giveaway of one eCopy of Courted to a lucky reader. So without further adieu…
What’s New with New Adult?
Guest post by Jennifer Chance
Kristin, hello! Thank you very much for reading and reviewing COURTED, and for hosting me today. I honestly don’t know how you do it… So. Many. Books. But I’m delighted that you took the time for COURTED!
When I saw one of your questions asked about “New Adult” and how the definition for that has potentially changed over the past few years, I thought “wow, I wish I was more qualified to talk to this.” Then I decided to go ahead and open the conversation. Because thoughts, I have them! But I recognize that my opinion may be much different than other authors/readers, so I welcome all comments.
What is New Adult, really?
When New Adult FIRST started becoming a thing, it was a bit of the “next step” beyond the hugely surging Young Adult genre. I write YA myself, as Jennifer McGowan (Elizabethan spy novels), so I am familiar with the genre. Most YAs have certain rules: you have protagonists who are 18 or younger, the books don’t have super adult levels of heat (in most cases), and they have a focus on the protagonist’s “coming of age story.”
Jumping from this amazingly rich genre into adult romance seemed a bit much for many readers (and authors), and New Adult was created to bridge that gap. These stories were often set in college, had a lot of heat (a WHOLE LOT in some cases, lol) but still focused on the protagonists trying to find their way in life/come of age/etc.
That was then.
Now, New Adult is aging upward a bit, with protagonists just out of college but still fairly new to the world of adulthood. They don’t have all the answers, they don’t even know all the questions, and they’re not completely in control of their emotions, lives, work, friendships, and certainly not their romances. Some of my other Chance books were questioned a bit because my heroines seemed a bit too old for New Adult, despite their ages. This was fair criticism, and I realized that my skewed perspective was born of the fact that, due to a parent’s unexpected death, I did hold down a major job with major requirements in my early 20s. But I totally got the criticism, because New Adult romance should be about that “growing up” experience. And I think that, no matter what the ages of your characters, if you keep that experience as part of the book, it still qualifies as New Adult. Unless, of course, your characters are 35-40. Then it becomes something a little more like “Forty Year Old Virgin” or “Failure to Launch.” 🙂
So, quick rundown:
THEN: New Adult
- College/immediate post college settings
- Ages early 20s
- “Growing Up/Coming of Age” a major theme
- Heat. (Not always, but often!)
NOW: New Adult
- College/post college/first job/random bumming around settings
- Ages 20-27ish for at least one protagonist
- “Growing Up/Coming of Age” still a major theme
- Still high heat, but I’m seeing more moderate heat too
That’s my take! I’d love to hear others’ ideas for how New Adult has changed as well… because it’s still a subgenre that has a lot (you know I can’t resist) of growing up to do. 🙂
Thanks again for hosting me!
Thank YOU, Jennifer, for your awesome thoughts! You are most certainly qualified to comment on this subject, especially because you’ve written from both sides of the genre. I completely agree with everything you say!!
CourtedSeries: Gowns & Crowns #1
by Jennifer Chance
Published by Barclay Publicity on October 6th 2015
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, New Adult
I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Aspiring concert violist Emmaline Aurora Grace Andrews is torn between her love of family and her love of music. A year ago, she deferred entering a prestigious graduate program to help her parents recover from a devastating accident. Now the deferment is expiring, but her parents still need her. Worse, every time she plays her audition piece, she mangles it. Is it too late to be the musician she'd always dreamed of? Should she even try?
Determined to get clarity, Emmaline accepts a friend's offer for a whirlwind European vacation. First Stop: a real live fantasy kingdom—the perfect place to sort wishes from reality.
Prince Kristos Andris was a respected captain in his nation’s military… Was. In the wake of the tragic death of his elder brother, he's managed to avoid his duties as the new Crown Prince of Garronia for months. But now he must accept his responsibilities and leave his troops behind. Outraged at the restrictions of his new royal position, he'll do anything for one last adventure. So when opportunity suddenly lands in his arms in the form of a dreamy-eyed American girl, he embraces it (and her) for all he's worth. What's the harm in a quick fling, after all? It won’t change what he knows he must do…
Only this is Garronia in the summertime, where passion has a way of ruining even the most sensible of plans.
I totally adored this book! I had no clue what to expect when I started to read this. Okay, wait. That’s a lie. I was expecting a sweet, adorable, fun in the sun, girl runs off in the sunset with the prince type of story… done ala new adult.
Nope, nope and nope.
Oh, the story started out that way, though. Emma needs a break from taking care of her ailing parents. Her affluent college friend, Lauren, decides to pitch in for Emma to take a two week trip through Europe with their other two college friends, Nicki and Fran. Emma is in such dire need of a break that her daydreaming has been noticed by her friends. You see, Emma uses daydreams of kingdoms, castles, and princes to keep her mind off of the heavy burdens of her life at the moment. Emma has had to put her life on hold to take care of her father who stubbornly won’t help himself heal and her mother who IS healing from a serious head injury. Emma’s dad sucks, her life sucks.
Through an accidental run-in on the beach, Emma meets Kristos, the heir apparent to crown of Garronia and she immediately has new material for her daydreams. Kristos, for his part, would love nothing more than to have a fling with the hot little American instead of having to deal with an arranged marriage to a complete stranger in a matter of days.
What enfolds is a romance where the best intentions end up ruining everything. It’s almost like that old story of Midas and his golden touch. He ruined all he loved just by touching it and turning it gold.
If you have even a tiny bit of princess envy in you… if you felt even a tinge of warmth somewhere around where your heart is at the end of Cinderella, you will enjoy this story.
But I will tell you, Ms. Chance definitely wrote this with the older, mature audience in mind. What a joy it was to read a woman who may have been in a “dry spell” for a few years but once she knew what she wanted, she went for it! Oh, Kristos, you never knew what hit you 😉
The giveaway is open to anyone who can receive either a Kindle copy or a Nook copy.
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(about the giveaway, I can’t help you about that rash).