Romance novels need a canon
"Bet Me" by Jennifer Crusie
A contemporary romantic comedy set to Elvis Costello and lots of luxurious and sinful sugary treats. Read the whole essay.
Pollutants released from cooking are similar to those found in outdoor smog, NPR reports. But even though we spend the majority of our time in our homes, breathing them in, it’s outdoor air quality that’s most stringently regulated.
According to Jennifer Logue, a research scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, cooking releases fumes that, just like smog, increase people’s risk of developing long-term health problems. When Logue studied air quality in Southern California homes that cooked at least once a week, she found that over half were above the outdoor health limit for nitrogen dioxide. This would be a huge deal, she said, if the measurement had been taken outdoors. And while gas stoves are responsible for that particular pollutant, food itself creates fine particles when it’s cooked on any type of stove.
Range hoods, which are responsible for ventilating cooking fumes, are often overlooked by regulators. ”Not all hoods work the same and currently, unfortunately, there’s no way for people to really know how effective their range hood is,” said Logue. A team at the lab is working on developing a standardized test that would help inform consumers. In the meantime, NPR listed some tips for home cooks to minimize their risk.
Lindsay Abrams is an assistant editor at Salon, focusing on all things sustainable. Follow her on Twitter @readingirl, email firstname.lastname@example.org.More Lindsay Abrams.
"Bet Me" by Jennifer Crusie
"Welcome to Temptation" by Jennifer Crusie
Another of Crusie's romantic comedies, this one in the shadow of an ostentatiously phallic water tower. Read the whole essay.
"A Gentleman Undone" by Cecilia Grant
A Regency romance with beautifully broken people and some seriously steamy sex. Read the whole essay.
"Black Silk" by Judith Ivory
A beautifully written, exquisitely slow-building Regency; the plot is centered on a box with some very curious images, as Edward Gorey might say. Read the whole essay.
"For My Lady's Heart" by Laura Kinsale
A medieval romance, the period piece functions much like a dystopia, with the courageous lady and noble knight struggling to find happiness despite the authoritarian society. Read the whole essay.
"Sweet Disorder" by Rose Lerner
A Regency that uses the limitations on women of the time to good effect; the main character is poor and needs to sell her vote ... or rather her husband's vote. But to sell it, she needs to get a husband first ... Read the whole essay.
"Frenemy of the People" by Nora Olsen
Clarissa is sitting at an awards banquet when she suddenly realizes she likes pictures of Kimye for both Kim and Kanye and she is totally bi. So she texts to all her friends, "I am totally bi!" Drama and romance ensue ... but not quite with who she expects. I got an advanced copy of this YA lesbian romance, and I’d urge folks to reserve a copy; it’s a delight. Read the whole essay.
"The Slightest Provocation" by Pam Rosenthal
A separated couple works to reconcile against a background of political intrigue; sort of "His Gal Friday" as a spy novel set in the Regency. Read the whole essay.
"Again" by Kathleen Gilles Seidel
Set among workers on a period soap opera, it manages to be contemporary and historical both at the same time. Read the whole essay.