I’ve had some truly awesome reader emails since Because of You released. I had one from a group of nurses that said they laughed so hard at the catheter scene, they had to be told to pipe down. That made my day to think that someone got that much enjoyment out of my book.

Now, I’m online (a lot but who’s counting) and I talk about politics and foreign policy and life as a company commander, so I interact with a lot of guys. Typical for my daily life, too, as the Army is, well, male dominated. Suffice it to say, there are a vast number of men who do not peruse the romance aisle of the local Barnes and Noble.

All that said, there have been several guys who have read my fun little romance novel involving catheters, scars and well, a few dick jokes thrown in for good measure.  These brave men have risked their man cards by reading a book with a naked man on the cover and yet, they have not only read it, they’ve shared their reactions for our viewing pleasure.

And some of the reactions had me falling out of my chair laughing so without further adieu,

A Few Men’s Reactions to A Romance Novel.

From an LT who shall not be named:

“you apparently can’t write a romance novel without swearing and dick jokes, either”


From a Special Ops CSM who shall not have his man card revoked:

“very much enjoyed my first romance novel. Not my normal reading experience but my new favorite genre…now back to reality. I did like it. Characters were well developed and I found myself rooting for the good guys and jeering for the bad guys. But WOW was it racy. Completely not prepared for that.”


And my new favs, from an email conversation that started over Navy SEALs and political affiliation, the crème de la crème of email conversations:

I would read your book myself but I don’t want to lose my man card.”

Me: “ Psht! If a special ops CSM can read it AND like it AND still retain his man card, I think you’re ok:) besides, I won’t tell if you won’t:)”

Him: “Yeah, but he’s special ops which means he has a very BIG man card. My man card is not so big and I can’t afford to lose any.”

The Next Day:OK, I swallowed what little pride I have, risked my mediocre man card and read your book with a naked man on the cover. It’s a very good book Jessica, congratulations. But I feel duped. I had no idea that romance novels don’t have an ending. So, in light of the fact that I risked so much and shelled out $2.99 I believe you owe me an answer to one question: Why the fuck was Trent court martialed? 

Me: “That’s has to be the best response ever! Can I please post it anonymously?”

Him: “Yes, you can post it. Just don’t mention my mediocre man card. Enough women already know about that. I don’t want the entire female population to know. I’m kidding, you can post the whole email if you want. So we don’t find out what happens? I thought your 2nd book came out in May or something. What happens to Laura? Do Shane and Jen live happily ever after? I can’t believe I am asking these questions. I feel so feminine. ..Why was Trent sexually harassing women? How the hell am I suppose to wait till Christmas?”

Later that day:I just had a thought. I don’t mean to be critical but during the hospital scene Shane had an erection that lasted 5 hours. According to the commercials he should have seeked immediate medical attention for an erection lasting more than 4 hours. You could have permanently damaged his penis. “

And finally: “Last thought, still not being critical. But Jen has orgasms incredibly fast. I mean Shane just touched her down there and she exploded. Now, maybe it is my mediocre man card but my experience says this is not realistic. I mean, fuck me runnin’, it takes me an hour, a bottle of baby oil, three dildos and a circus {clown} to get my wife off.”

Folks, this stuff has had me laughing for hours! I love love love that people are reading my book but I love even more that they’re sending  emails like these gems. As one of my LTs pointed out, getting me to laugh is the fastest way out of an ass chewing.

Being a romance writer rocks.

Oh and one final thought from the above conversation: when I mentioned that one of my reasons for writing with a pen name was to keep some sweaty bald major from asking me where I got my ideas, he gave me the perfect come back: “your wife

I love my job.