Narelle here. In a recent StoryChats @InspyRomance episode #7 with Jaycee Weaver we talked about kisses in CCR (contemporary Christian romance) books. Our conversation started me thinking about why I love kissing books and why I like kissing to be included in romance novels.
In a romance story, the main characters are falling in love and on their journey to happily-ever-after. The physical expression of their romance journey will include attraction, affection and, in a CCR, a growing level of intimacy for Christian characters that’s consistent with Biblical values. If the characters make unwise choices, they’ll be dealing with the consequences of their actions and decisions in the story. CCR books are often described as clean, wholesome, and family friendly romance reads.
I don’t like gratuitous kissing, in the sense that I like the kisses to be a meaningful addition to the story. Kissing is nice and fun but it’s not the only reason I read romance. I can enjoy a romance story if there’s a compelling reason for the kissing to be either low key or postponed until the very end.
Today I’m going to share a few CCR’s I’ve read that include fun and memorable kisses.
Book 1 in Valerie’s Cavanagh Cowboys Romance series was the obvious CCR to mention because the first of many kisses happens in the opening pages of the story!
If you haven’t read Marry Me for Real, Cowboy, check out the first kiss scene in the Amazon sample and you’ll be hooked into reading this fun and faith-filled fake engagement cowboy romance set in Montana.
Riley and Adam are adorable characters who spend a lot of time trying to convince themselves that their ‘kissing for show’ in front of his family isn’t real and isn’t stirring tender feelings of love. A satisfying romance develops that will also appeal to readers who may have reservations about fake relationship tropes. Adam and Riley experience real consequences and relationship complications due to their deceptive behavior that challenges their faith in the story.
Book 4 in Elizabeth’s Hope Ranch series set in New Mexico has Indigo and Joaquin dealing with an unplanned pregnancy. Indigo isn’t a Christian at the start of the story and she meets Joaquin at her sister’s wedding. They’re both very attracted to each other from the start, and they share many kisses during the story.
Joaquin and Indigo’s romance is messy and beautiful and very complicated. I loved travelling with them in the story and experiencing all the emotions and uncertainty that goes along with their journey to parenthood.
Indigo’s faith journey is one of my favorite aspects of the story. I loved seeing her turn to Jesus and accepting him as her savior. I’m not necessarily a big fan of conversion scenes in CCR because they can slide into ‘preachy territory’. That said, Indigo’s faith conversion is a stand out and one of the best I’ve read in CCR.
If you haven’t read Hope for Freedom or visited with the characters in the Hope Ranch series, you’re missing out on top quality CCR with very satisfying kissing scenes!
Book 1 in Courtney’s Nantucket Love Story series has Emily and Hollis sharing their first sweet kiss at the tender age of eleven. The young lovebirds are separated for many years due to Emily’s mother dying in a car wreck on the island and Emily’s grandparents abandoning their summer vacation home on the beach.
Emily returns to Nantucket when she inherits the derelict beach house that needs to be renovated. Hollis is now a retired baseball star who’s staying next door with his daughter and family for the summer.
Emily is one of those characters who you want to embrace in a big hug. She’s lost and vulnerable and has memorised the letters addressed to her from her mom’s diary. A dual storyline with Emily’s mom unfolds and provides an insight into Emily’s mom’s early life and her kisses with Emily’s father. The island holds the key to unlocking the secrets in Emily’s family that have torn them apart, and provide hope for redemption and forgiveness and reconciliation.
A lovely romance develops between Emily and Hollis as they become more-than-friends and share many memorable kisses. If for Any Reason is a charming CCR and the perfect summer read with a pretty beach-themed cover!
I shared my book recommendation for Star Rising last month in my Inspy Romance post that can be found here. In the Kissing podcast episode #7 that can also be watched on YouTube, I read a short excerpt from a kissing scene in Star Rising. I’m mentioning Janet again because she’s a CCR author who writes satisfying and memorable kissing scenes in her books.
There are a number of CCR authors (and many of them blog at Inspy Romance) who I could have included in my post because they write amazing kissing scenes. Unfortunately time and space limitations mean I’m stopping at four books, and I’ll save those books to talk about later.
Questions for you: Do you have a preference regarding the kissing content in CCR books? Have you read any of the books I’ve mentioned? Can you list any CCR books or CCR authors you’d recommend to readers looking for memorable kissing books? I’d love to hear your thoughts.
I’m giving away a $10 Amazon US gift card to a reader who comments on this post. The giveaway will close on Friday, March 5 and the winner announced in the Sunday Edition.