I started reading Robin Schone’s historical erotic romance novels as a freshman in high school. Don’t get me wrong—I love them, I do! Robin Schone is my all time favorite erotic romance writer because this sister takes it there. Without knowing her politics about race, class, gender, and sexuality, I don’t want to over praise her though. However, I was (and still am about most of her work) impressed. The depth, the richness, the detail—hell, the sex, just to be very blunt and throw that out there!
My favorite books are almost all of them, The Lady’s Tutor and Gabriel’s Woman being the first ones to really reach out to me. Also, there’s The Lover, which you need to acknowledge in order to really appreciate Gabriel’s Woman even though they stand alone well enough. The two anthologized stories are excellent as well. The only one I own but have not really warmed to is Awaken My Love, if I’m not leaving anything else out.
I love her empathy, her ability to reach down into these characters’, like, guts so to speak to extract literary gold!
I do have some issues. I know that there were some radical feminist who HATED The Lady’s Tutor in particular and I think I know why. But without guessing too much and without further ado and in no particular order:
TOP TEN ISSUES WITH ROBIN SCHONE:
- I challenge Robin Schone to step outside of her realm of expertise and write a contemporary erotic romance novel.
I challenge R.S. to take another step and write about people of color using all that empathy, if she has the sociological knowledge to do so or the bravery to try and research.Scratch that–I gotta write my own stuff!!!
- Some of the sexual abuse, systems of violence, and pedophilia issues in the books seemed glossed over. Ramiel’s mother’s Stockholm’s Syndrome was so not funny.
- Homoerotic tension—annoying! Especially between Michael and Gabriel. Don’t gimmick and bate us!
- Race/ethnicity issues with Ramiel. Exoticizing of Ramiel as a “half Arab” in The Lady’s Tutor. Among other issues, such as Ramiel’s unapologetic sexual privilege.
- Exoticizing of Arabia in The Lady’s Tutor in a very Eurocentric way to give upper crust white women something to fantasize about.
- The angel references in Gabriel’s Woman and The Lover could have been clearer. Maybe there’s some biblical hoopla that I’m not getting there. Gabriel’s character was a little two mysterious for me. I keep thinking I missed something.
- Is R.S. homophobic? I feel as if there is plenty of homoerotic tension at the expense of the queer community, but is it the setting of the story or is R.S. imparting her own beliefs about homosexual people in Ramiel, Michael, and Gabriel’s books in particular?
- I challenge R.S. to write a book about homosexual lovers and/or the gender-nonconforming.
- The women are bold for their historical context and the men are decent but…MORE! Make them MORE!!!