Top Ten Reasons to (Still) Love Paranormal Romance

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By Kayla King, Editorial Assistant to Harlequin Intrigue and Harlequin Nocturne

Discussions around paranormal romance tend to be a bit polarized—but while these may not be the glory days, I still find myself a staunch defender of this category. Whether you still think it’s hot or not, there’s a reason paranormal romance once took the world by force.  And I’ve got ten reasons for you to keep reading it today!

1. It’s the perfect escape. I’m just going to dive right in here and point out the obvious—paranormal is the ultimate fantasy because it’s not reality. Anything can happen.  It can be the end of the world, as long as love prevails.

2. World building and lore. While not everyone goes in for these, I find the magic, the secret societies, and the ancient histories fascinating.

3. Atmosphere. Have you read a gothic paranormal romance recently? No?  Get on that.  The writing in a lot of paranormal romance is often as lush as it is engaging.

4. High stakes (no pun intended). The conflict in these books are often all or nothing—the last of a species, the savior of a clan, the ending of a war.  Plenty to keep you on the edge of your seat.

5. Variety. Sure, we have vampires and werewolves, but have you been keeping up with bear-shifters? How about mermaids?  Immortal druidic assassins?

6. Relatable characters, but with a twist. While still defined by human traits and feelings, their paranormal species informs on who they are as a person, which just makes these characters that much more complex.

7. Speaking of which, our alphas aren’t your typical romance alphas.   They’re literally at the top of the pack.  And what I personally love about the guys of paranormal romance—it’s a category that opens itself up to characters like anti-heroes exceptionally well.

8. And on that note, we take devils and angels. Dying to write a good redemption arc?  Paranormal romance kicks that trope up a notch.

9. There are many different stories that paranormal romance can house as well. Sexy contemporary, romantic suspense, and don’t forget historical!

10. And who could forget the otherworldly hotness? Everyone knows you get a six-pack when you become a vampire.  You know you scrolled down for this.


Are you a tried-and-true paranormal romance reader?  Do you dabble? New to the genre?  Tell us your faves or ask for recommendations in the comments below!

And check out the latest paranormal romance titles from Harlequin Nocturne!

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  1. Kimber Li

    Maybe it’s a marketing thing, but Paranormal Romance in general seems all Dark, Graphically Sexy, Alpha Males and Kick-Butt Heroines only. Edward is hot and so is Buffy, but I like Captain Sparrow and Legolas too.

  2. Chrissie

    One of my favorite categories. but it has changed. when I was an avid reader of paranormal I loved the ghosts, witches, warlocks, vampires, mermaids, devils, and angels. Maybe not so much the devils and the vampires, but I liked the stories where there was still an HEA. Most of the paranormal stories these days should be considered more fantasy – shape-shifters, vampires, werewolves, zombies…it all reeks of fantasy. My favorite gothic writers were Victoria Holt (and all of her pen names), Mary Stewart, Daphine du Maurier, Anya Seton, Nora Lofts, Barbara Michaels…the list goes on and on. For fantasy, I enjoyed Jules Verne, Edgar Rice Burroughs, and a distant relation who wrote on the darker side – Edgar Allen Poe.
    I love to write paranormal but mostly stories involving ghosts or angels. Always on the lighter side, always romantic, and never too grisly or bloody. Not much into that part of the world, far too close to reality these days. One of my favorite ghost stories made into a movie I adore was The Ghost of Captain Gregg by Josephine Leslie. The movie? The Ghost and Mrs. Muir, circa late 1940s. Still one of the best ghost love stories ever. Another fact I hold dear to my heart, the movie was released on my mother’s 25th birthday. She introduced me to reading and her love of the old movies. I will be forever grateful.