2015 Australian Romance Readers Awards – Winners

2015 Australian Romance Readers Awards – Winners

Congratulations to the winners of the ARRA awards! Presented at Cello’s Restaurant, Sydney.

The Spring Bride by Anne Gracie (Chance Sisters, Book 3)The Patterson Girls by Rachael JohnsFire Me Up by Rachael Johns (Deacons of Bourbon Street, Book 2)Northern Heat by Helene YoungTribal Law by Shannon CurtisBase by Cathleen RossAnticipation by Sarah Mayberry (Brothers Ink, Book 2)Moonstone Cottage by Kerrie PatersonThe Horse Thief by Tea Cooper

The belle of the ball at this year’s Australian Romance Readers Awards was historical romance author Anne Gracie, who took out the top prize for Favourite Australian Romance Author. Her Chance Sisters series (BT | Amz) was named Favourite Continuing Series, and her 2015 release, The Spring Bride (BT | Amz) was named Favourite Historical Romance. The heroine, Jane Chance, took out the prize for Strongest Heroine.

Rural romance author Rachael Johns won Favourite Contemporary Romance for The Patterson Girls (BT | Amz), and Favourite Short or Category Romance for Fire Me Up (BT | Amz), breaking Kelly Hunter’s four-year run.

Helene Young picks up Favourite Romantic Suspense for the third year in a row (she has won this award five times now) for Northern Heat (BT | Amz).

It was great to see some new faces in the winners list, too. Dinner emcee Shannon Curtis picked up Favourite Paranormal Romance for her crowdsourced novel Tribal Law (BT | Amz), proceeds of which go back to ARRA. I’m not sure how I feel about an ARRA-published book winning an ARRA award, but I did hear more than one reader mention that they wouldn’t have read the book had it not been for the ARRA connection, so I’m glad it introduced readers to the paranormal subgenre. Curtis announced that the series has been picked up by Harlequin Nocturne, which I’m pretty excited about.

Cathleen Ross won Favourite SFF or Futuristic Romance for Base (BT | Amz), and Sarah Mayberry won Favourite Erotic Romance for her self-published book Anticipation (BT | Amz).

Kerrie Paterson (BT | Amz) was named Favourite New Author, and The Horse Thief (BT | Amz) by Tea Cooper won Favourite Cover.

Proud member of the Australian Romance Readers AssociationKylie Scott was announced as the Australian keynote speaker for ARRC17 in Melbourne. The convention will be held at the Rydges Melbourne from February 24 to 26.

I delivered the guest speech during the dinner, and you can find the transcript here. A live recording will be available through our podcast next month.

Thanks to ARRA and its sponsors for hosting a lovely dinner!


  1. Kaetrin says:

    I love Shannon and I thought it was incredibly generous of her to donate Tribal Law to ARRA. But I think it’s totally inappropriate for a book ARRA published and from which ARRA profits (even if that profit is not large – though I don’t know what it is) to be even included in the awards. I hope ARRA addresses this conflict directly for future awards. Maybe it’s very unlikely to ever happen again (Shannon’s generosity here was extraordinary) but I feel that, having happened once, it now needs to be specifically addressed for the future.

    Again, my thoughts are totally unrelated to the book itself and are no reflection on Shannon Curtis. But the bare facts are: ARRA published the book, ARRA profits from sales of the book, ARRA actively and and significantly promoted the book (of course they did – see publish and profit earlier) and then ARRA gives the book an award. That just seems off to me. I have no problem with ARRA publishing, promoting or profiting from any book but I don’t think it can then be included in the ARR Awards. The two things are in too much conflict IMO.

    • Kat says:

      Yeah, it’s a bit of a conflict even though I don’t think anyone did anything dodgy or anything like that. Would you still have these concerns when the other books come out under the Nocturne line?

      • Kaetrin says:

        No, I don’t think anyone did anything dodgy either and I’d have no problem with other books in the series which are not published by ARRA and from which ARRA doesn’t profit.

        Perhaps it’s my legal background but I’m troubled by the obvious conflict of interest ARRA has here.

What do you think?

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