With the sudden and largely unexpected rise in Afro romance novels’ popularity over the past few years we’ve read more, heard more and seen more new storylines than ever. It’s such a relief to finally feel represented in the fictional world for all the right reasons! With so many new, complex and endearing characters to look up to and relate to, we certainly feel at home.
So many romantic novels these days are focusing on the fantasy side of things, with the inclusion of sci-fi worlds or supernatural powers. These are all well and good, and we love the occasional werewolf or vampire! But whether a book has fantasy creatures or just regular guys, all we really need is something that resonates with our feelings, life and point of view. As strong black women, this can be rare to find in book form. But with the rise of afro romance novels, we’re reading about characters just like us, and learning a whole load of lessons along the way.
The most touching and heartwarming of all of these novels are those that teach us a little something more about ourselves or our own lives. The great thing about these newer Afro romance book releases are that they do all the things we’ve been looking for combined. They help us with our own personal struggles, they act as our guideline for figuring things out, and they’re cathartic, yet still empowering. So we want to share with you the best things we’ve learned from Afro romance novels.
Love Isn’t Black And White
Now we’re not talking about ethnicities or skin color here (although there are plenty of interracial romance books out there!). We’re simply talking about letting go of all the misconceptions and false connotations you have about how love ‘ought to be’, what’s ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ in love… because, really, who knows?
We love Afro romance books because they highlight and promote the types of relationships that the big screens and bestsellers usually don’t. The one where the female is pregnant from a previous relationship. Where she’s hated by her in-laws. Where the main characters aren’t the same age. Perhaps they’re from different cultures, or still tangled up in previous relationships. These kinds of messy love stories reflect the reality of love and relationships.
Family First Does Not Mean Our Partner Comes Second
This might be a generalization, but in our experience African American families tend to be somewhat of a tight unit. The majority of us have family expectations cast on us from a young age and ‘blood is thicker than water’ is a saying we tend to live by. So then what are you supposed to do when your family doesn’t approve of your future partner?
Time after time we’ve seen this scenario occur in our favorite Afro romance novels and we have to say a thank you to them for completely understanding our point of view. Just because you love your other half, does not mean that you are putting your family second. Whether your new partner is from a different faith, ethnic background, class or social standing to you, this new person in your life is now an extension of your family. Yes, they may not agree for now. But given time, patience and their eventual understanding that you’re not leaving or dishonoring them by being with this new person, they’re likely to come around.
You Don’t Have To Be Beyoncé To Find Love
Hallelujah is all we have to say here! Finally black men and women are being praised in the fictional world. Not for having our hair chemically straightened, for being light skinned or for accomplishing huge achievements… but for simply being ourselves! Afro romance books teach us the deeper meaning of love, attachment and connection in an everyday world.
Life Isn’t About Settling
One of the last things we’ve really homed in on in afro romance novels is simply that you only have one life. Spontaneity, feeling and emotion all play a huge part in how we live and how we want to live. At the end of the day, if you’re not living how you want to, with who you want to, it’s down to you and you alone to change it. People will either support you or they won’t, but there are billions of people in this world. If you’re not fulfilled in your life and with who you’re with, change it!
We’re delighted about the rising popularity of these books and can’t wait to get our hands on all the latest releases so we can delve deeper into a new realm of possibilities.
What love lessons have you learned from afro romance novels?