by Carmen Fox
BOUND is categorized as an Urban Fantasy Romance rather than a Paranormal Romance, even though the two share many features. Both UF and Paranormal Romances contain paranormal elements, such as witches, vampires, werewolves, fae, satyrs, demons etc.
Urban Fantasy is distinct from Paranormal Romances in that any romantic liaison doesn’t need to be resolved or permanent by the end of the book. In other words, Urban Fantasy novels don’t have to be of a romantic nature. The plot can be a conspiracy to kill the president, or the rise of a new power threatening the world. Any romance is an add-on, if you will, or a bonus. In Urban Fantasy, each book of a series will focus on the same characters. Romance helps expand our understanding of our hero or heroes.
I should add that Carmen, the reader, reads all sorts. Urban Fantasy, Crime, Steam Punk, Horror… No genre is safe from her voracious appetites. That includes Paranormal Romance.
But if the greatest question mark in a book is the ‘will they/won’t they’—especially since we already know the answer—Carmen, the writer, is not interested. She needs more if she is to embark on a new story, but it’s not easy to find new things to keep her engaged. Urban Fantasy offers more variety and possibilities than any other genre.
In GUARDED, the main character, Ivy, had to come to terms with who she was BEFORE she chose her perfect partner. I dubbed GUARDED an Urban Fantasy Mystery, because the mystery was an integral part of this Urban Fantasy, combining threads from multiple plots into one complex puzzle the heroine had to solve. Even though it had a romantically happy ending and some steamy scenes, the romance was never the focus.
BOUND, by contrast, is an Urban Fantasy Romance. The main plot revolves around the hero, Florian, and his ability to manage his loyalties and his bonds. So much for the Urban Fantasy part. In this case, romance is an integral part of his journey, so it made sense to call BOUND an Urban Fantasy Romance.
Truthfully, authors don’t care much about genres and categories. We write what we like, and deal with the admin later. Trouble is, booksellers can’t offer the breadth of subcategories authors wish. If they did, there would be thousands of possible variations. Instead, Amazon decreed that BOUND must be a Paranormal Romance or an Urban Fantasy, not some hybrid. I categorized it as both, possibly offending purists on either side. Other sellers offer only Fantasy and Paranormal Romance. In those cases, I opted for Paranormal Romance, because BOUND is closer to Bella Forrest’s and Patricia Briggs’s books than it is to ‘Lord of the Rings’ or ‘Game of Thrones.’
In fact, many books are a combination of two or more genres. Young Adult could range from a futuristic dystopian on a different planet to a coming-of-age story playing out on a ranch. Crime novels could be set in the pre-war Soviet Union or in modern-day Washington, D.C. Urban Fantasy is no different. I have read Historical Urban Fantasy set in the 1900s; action-packed Urban Fantasy Thrillers; Urban Fantasy Crime; and so on. And just like “Historical,” “Thriller,” and “Crime,” the addition “Romance” is meant to help readers identify what flavor Urban Fantasy they’re about to taste. That’s all.
As should have become clear, categories are artificial definitions to give you an idea of the book. They are in no way a measure of the book itself. Many readers will refer to BOUND as a Paranormal Romance. That’s okay. Some will claim it’s an Urban Fantasy. That’s fine, too. And if you’re a Paranormal Romance reader who has never tried Urban Fantasy, an Urban Fantasy Romance might just be for you.
She writes about smart women with sassitude, about pretty cool guys too, and will chase that plot twist, no matter how elusive.
Guarded (The Silverton Chronicles – Bk. 1) became a no. 1 bestseller in the vampire and werewolf mystery categories.
Connect with Carmen: Website
Carmen's Newest Release: Bound
Florian has it all: excellent fashion sense, a kickass job with his best friend, and a hard-won place among Silverton’s werewolves. When a pack of females pads into their territory, Flo’s alpha dispatches him to handle a merger. Total cakewalk. Except Keely, their alpha, has no intention of submitting her wolves to Flo's larger pack. Worse, a single glance from her baby blues sends his eloquence on vacation and his heartbeat into overdrive. His flirtations seem welcome too, but there's a snag. She doesn’t know he’s a vampire.
While Flo struggles with his conflicts—obey his alpha, or win over Keely—his estranged sire blasts into town with a catalog of radical ideas. And hanging out with unsophisticated werewolves didn't make the list.
With violence in the air and all sides testing his loyalties, Florian must bite back, even if showing his fangs costs him the girl.
Available Here: Amazon | Smashwords | iBooks | BN