1. Name your all-time favourite male character.
I like dark heroes best. Usually those from Anne Stuart or Linda Howard really float my boat. But for some reason Roark from J. D. Robb's 'In Death' captures my fancy. He's the one hero who makes my heart flip. I love his intelligence and his single minded focus on Eve. I love when this arrogant alpha male fell flat on his ass for Eve from the very beginning. I remember in Naked in Death he finds a button that Eve lost from her jacket after she had interviewed him as a suspect in a murder case. He saves the button as a keepsake. Well, he had me right there. It doesn't hurt that he is gorgeous and a billionaire to boot. He accepts Eve quirks and all and is always in the background making her life easier and protecting her even when she doesn't want it. And he treats her like an equal. Sigh. I could go on but I'll spare you.
2. What is your favourite setting? Historical / Contemporary or otherwise. Why?
I loved history as a HS student so when I started reading romances I always gravitated to historical romances. I enjoy almost any time period if well drawn. I don't care for fluffy historicals where the dialogue and setting are not well researched although I don't consider myself a stickler for accuracy. I am getting tired of regency set historicals but haven't given them up entirely. I like medievals and renaissance books and historicals set in unusual places like India, Egypt, China, and Australia. I read a couple books set in ancient Rome by Gillian Bradshaw that were fascinating.
3. What trait in a hero can you not abide?
Arrogance or the attitude that they know what is best for the heroine and everyone else. Part of the problem here is that the heroine is too meek and submissive. An arrogant hero only works when he's balanced with a kickass heroine to whip him into line. (See #1 & #4)
4. Who's your favourite heroine of all time?
Has to be Eve (see #1). She is so incredibly wounded but kickass tough. Her growth in this series is phenomenal. She's intelligent, loyal, and I liked how she is madly in love with Roarke but not in a sappy sweet way. I even like her fear of children and her battles with Sumerset.
5. What is your favourite genre?
Historical romance used to be my favorite but I'm getting tired of the regency period. I beginning to like american frontier set historicals (i.e. Cheryl St. John and Pamela Clare). I also really like romantic suspense, but I hate lots of blood, rape, physical abuse, crazed serial killers, torture, sex slaves, child abuse, animal cruelty so I'm picky about what I'll actually finish. But I do like the mystery aspect of them. I would like to find books that combine history with romantic suspense but the few I have read don't have enough romance or senuality (OK, I want more sex than half a page).
6. What genre do you dislike the most? What is it that grates?
Fantasy. I hate stupid names with apostophes and names that I can't pronounce. I hate too much world building and unrealistic plots (ok, I can hear you thinking "but it's fantasy, stupid" and I say "but it still has to be realistic, so back off"). I hate overly alpha males which seem to populate most of this genre.
Update: I probably should clarify what I mean by fantasy. I tend to think of fantasy as the magical, mystical type of romances as opposed to the more 'practical' romances such as futuristics, vampires, werewolves, and science fiction I like.
7. If you have ever read books from the genre you don't like is there at least one book from that genre that you could recommend?
No, I can't think of one.
8. List some examples of books that represent the best of the romance genre.
The Notorious Rake by Mary Balogh
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas
Bliss / Dance by Judy Cuevas
Fallen from Grace by Laura Leone
It Had to Be You by SEP
Welcome to Temptation by Jennifer Crusie
Mackenzie's Mountain by Linda Howard
A Rose at Midnight by Anne Stuart
Sea Swept by Nora Roberts
Naked in Death by JD Robb
I could go on but I'll stop now.