Saturday, September 05, 2015

Weekend Wildcard - Why We Love Reunion Romances

The Pink Heart Society is delighted to be welcoming new regular columnist Jill Kemerer, as she talks about her love for reunion romance novels...

This will come as a shocker, but I’m nosy. I regularly read gossip magazines. I keep mental tabs on the houses for sale in our neighborhood and check if they’re wearing Sale Pending signs. If there are fifteen cars in front of so-and-so’s home, I come up with several reasons why. I also shamelessly eavesdrop on loud conversations. What can I say? I’d apologize, but I don’t feel bad!

My daughter and I still reminisce about a minor league baseball game where two very intoxicated older gentlemen sat behind us, discussing their divorces, why the third baseman wasn’t fit for the major leagues, and how Christine (whoever she was) kicked one off the couch and out of her life. It really doesn’t get better in my world.

What does this have to do with reunion romance novels? Everything!

My unscientific theory about why reunion romance novels are so popular is based on three key reasons.

1. We’re all a little nosy.

The book’s characters obviously liked—even loved—each other at one point, so we’re curious. Why DID they break up? How will they ever get back together? Will they work out their problems? Will they do things differently this time? (Why did Christine really kick the above-mentioned guy off her couch? I still want the scoop on that.)

2. We’re also nostalgic.

Most of us recall those crazy feelings of infatuation we had about someone. We remember our first kisses, first dates and the feeling of delight at meeting someone who thinks we’re amazing. 

Purchasing a reunion romance allows us to experience these emotions through the characters. Feel-good vibes pump through when the heroine locks eyes with tall-dark-and-hotness. Sure, she hates him, but she remembers the first words he said to her, the way he drew her into his arms, and she can’t help loving him a teeny bit, too. We want to vicariously experience the highs and lows of someone else’s romantic chaos. It’s fun!

3. We’re romantics at heart.

If the hero and heroine can work through near-impossible problems to embrace a future with each other, maybe we can too. When I’m reading a romance novel, I get emotionally invested. I understand the heroine’s dilemmas, feel her longings, her fears. And my heart aches for the hero who was misunderstood or acted like a jerk but regrets it. I want them to get together, and I have to keep reading to see how they work it out. There’s something so satisfying about finishing a good reunion romance novel. Mm-mm!

The characters in my new release, Unexpected Family, came calling one day and would not leave me alone. Tom Sheffield gets the surprise of his life when his ex-wife Stephanie shows up on his porch five years after the divorce and tells him he has a daughter.

The biggest challenge with writing this particular reunion romance was to make Stephanie likable and sympathetic. Tom, Stephanie and their daughter Macy broke my heart many times as I wrote the book, but they also surprised me. I love these characters and hope you do, too!

Do you love reunion romances? And are you as nosy as I am? More? Less? Do tell!

Jill's second book for Harlequin Love Inspired, Unexpected Family is available now:

His Surprise Daughter 

After five years apart, Tom Sheffield is shocked to find his ex-wife, Stephanie, on his doorstep. The news that they share a child he's never met sends him reeling. Four-year-old Macy has his eyes, his mouth and, from their first encounter, his heart. Things with her mother are much more complicated. 

He doesn't understand what went wrong between them or why she kept their daughter a secret. And he's afraid of falling in love all over again. Yet he feels a glimmer of hope that somehow he can convince Macy and Stephanie to stay in Lake Endwell—and with him—for keeps.

Jill Kemerer writes inspirational romance novels with love, humor and faith. A full time writer and homemaker, she relies on coffee and chocolate to keep up with her kids’ busy schedules.  She loves connecting with readers, so please visit her website and find her on Facebook and Twitter.


  1. I have written one - you have certainly nailed why we love them! Can't wait to read your new novel.

    1. Ooh, Beverley, I'm sure yours is a goodie! Thanks for stopping by!