Book Bizzo #5 The love and romance edition

ARRC update

If you’ve registered for the Australian Romance Readers Convention, don’t forget to vote for your favourite reader review (hopefully you’ll like the review of Claiming the Courtesan in the fifth round *g*). You can read the entries here, and voting ends tomorrow.

The ARRC website has a guest blog for authors supporting the convention. It seems everyone is jealous of our summer. All I can say is that I hope nothing happens to the air conditioning that weekend!

Check out the Melbourne Leader article on the convention: Romantics converge in Melbourne for novel convention. This time next week, we’ll be in Melbourne! *happy dance*

Book events

The National Library of Australia in Canberra is holding a speed dating night for book lovers on Friday, February 20. You’re invited to bring your favourite book to use as an ice breaker and meet other book lovers. The event is open to all book lovers—not just singles. The event starts at 6.30pm, and for $30 ($25 concession), you get a glass of wine and the pleasure of listening to a jazz trio. Bookings can be made through the library at 02 6262 1271 or by e-mailing (Via Australian Women Online)

The Perth Writers Festival will be running from February 28 to March 2. (Via Matilda)


I’ve discovered another secondhand bookstore online called Girrlit’s Books. It’s based in Melbourne, but as far as I can tell, the shopfront is online only.

Readings in Melbourne is having its annual February Sale until February 23.

Booktopia is having a 5th Birthday Clearance Sale for 5 days, starting on February 18.

Blue Diablo blow out

One of my auto-buy authors, Ann Aguirre, is running a huge competition in the lead up to the release of her new urban fantasy novel, Blue Diablo. There are two contests and the prizes are readalicious. Click here for details.

And other random stuff…

Further to Koala Sam, who downed three bottles of water generously provided by a CFA firefighter, she has now found a male friend (check out the pictures—they’re cuddling and it’s so sweet) while recovering from burns to her feet. I’m don’t usually fawn over animals, but even I can’t help but smile when I see Koala Sam. Don’t you think she looks like she’s always suffering from bad hair day? It’s adorable. Please consider donating to the bushfire relief fund via the Red Cross (1800 811 700 or through your local bank) or the Salvos. You can also help organisations caring for injured wildlife and livestock by donating to RSPCA Victoria or Wildlife Victoria.

The Toronto Star has a lovely article on Romance vs. Reality by Tracy Nesdoly, which also talks about romance novels:

For all the swooning associated with it now, the genre didn’t originate that way. Romance was born in the medieval era and focused on a hero doing heroic things. The stories were fantastic adventures about a chivalrous knight, often with superhuman abilities, who would go on a quest of some sort, fighting off monsters or giants while abiding by strict codes of honour. In the end, he might win the favour of a lady, but the adventure was what got hearts pounding, not the notion of everlasting love.

It was the French who put the girl at the centre of things, and fairly recently (well, the 1700s), so that love, fidelity (especially in the face of adversity) and courtship got the blood moving.

But the bit I love best is this:

something that is true about both romance and love: in the throes of it, you feel that you are actually seen, and not only seen but adored for all your quirks. The hero sees your best self and no other; it’s as if all those gnarly bits don’t exist. And so they don’t. For a brief time you are your best self, your most fascinating self. This is the addictive bit.

Happy Valentines Day to everyone!

Save the date

14/2 — Workshop/talk with Amarinda Jones at Beerwah Library, 10.00am
14/2 — Workshop/talk with Amarinda Jones at Coolum Beach Library, 1.30pm
14/2 — Meet the Author talk with Bronwyn Parry at Tamworth City Library
20-22/2 — Australian Romance Readers Convention
20/2 — Speed dating for book lovers at the National Library, 6.30pm | Bookings: 02 6262 1271 or ($30/25)
24/2 — Sherrilyn Kenyon book signing at Galaxy Bookshop, 5:30pm | Register: or (02) 9267 7222
28/2 to 2/3 — Perth Writers Festival
5/3 — Trudi Canavan book signing at Galaxy Bookshop, 5:30pm

Book Bizzo is a weekly omnibus of news items, events, and other interesting tidbits related to books, and especially the Australian romance book industry. You can find past Book Bizzo posts here.

Did we miss anything important? Got a book event coming up? Feel free to send tips, press releases, and any other interesting links to

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