By Lynn Crandall, author of Dancing with Detective Danger
Change is a part of life. It’s inevitable. Sometimes change feels really rough and we resist, even though ultimately it’s pointless. Even when change is a good thing, we tend to have a hard time with the transition.
But even in change, some things are timeless. The love of a child. The joy in camaraderie with friends. And that we find much of what we seek in meaningful relationships. With the Crimson Romance re-release of classic romances, readers can appreciate the timelessness of love and romance.
In reading Clarissa Ross’s book Eternal Desire, a book set in the 1800s and originally released by Jove in 1979, I found all the elements I enjoy about reading today’s romances. From the first page I was hooked. Sentences throughout, such as the description, “It was a place of eternal chill,” resonated with my senses. The intrigue on the pages grabbed my attention, and the development of relationships engaged my emotions. With beautiful and interesting details and settings, Clarissa Ross — the pseudonym of author William Edward Daniel Ross — wove an involved story of suspense, danger, and passion.
Sound familiar? Yes, because even though writing style has evolved since Ross’s time, the elements that make a romance popular have remained consistent over time. Romance novels continue to offer readers sometimes ordinary characters, sometimes larger-than-life characters, who face the challenges of life’s realities, like loss and pain and the need to adapt. In Eternal Desire, Ross’s heroine, Della Standish, is strong and ready to defy society’s conventions and eager to explore new opportunities. In my book, Dancing with Detective Danger, heroine Sterling Aegar, too, has strengths and is finding her way in the world, albeit with defenses firmly in place. Ross’s Della was orphaned at a young age, as was Sterling. Both stories explore the very human expression of how the main character carries this burden and how she grows to contain all that life has given her.
Neither character is fearless, but in the very romance novel way, each is willing to persevere and face her enemies. As a private investigator, Sterling faces danger puzzling together the problems of her client’s case, all the while struggling with the pain of embracing love with her former love, Ben Kirby. The past haunts her and she has to decide what to hang on to and what to let go.
In Eternal Desire, Della, too, faces life and death and the possibility of losing her inheritance – a life-changing situation. She must use her intelligence and common sense to sort out who the good guys and bad guys are and find her happy-ever-after. That happy ending is something that can be counted on for satisfaction in a love story. It’s a place where readers can find entertainment and comfort, because as everything changes, including the stories of a good romance, the elements offer timeless appeal. It’s the romantic in me that believes we can rely on the timelessness of some things to help us weather transitions and realize our best self.