RomCon Romance Heat Scale

RomCon® is well aware there are many levels of heat or sensuality associated with romance books today. It changes depending on author, publisher, blog site, and any other outlet for romance today. There's a full gamut, from 'behind closed doors' to 'against the door.' We also know this is a subjective scale, dependent upon each reader's--and author's--personal thoughts. With that in mind, it is impossible for RomCon® to apply a rating system to the books that are on our site. We can't read every one, and we can't ask the authors, nor the readers to apply a rating to a specific book, because, as stated, it's subjective. But, we can share with you our heat scale or rating and let you be the judge. 

1) None
2) Sweet
3) Mild
4) Hot
5) Wild Ride

6) Blood Thirsty 

None:
Sensuality is not the focus of the book. There may be profanity or mild violence. (e.g., Young Adult, Family Sagas...)

Sweet:
No sex or scenes of physical intimacy except kissing. No profanity. No graphic violence. (e.g., Christian Fiction, Sweet Romance, Young Adult Romance...)Mild: There may be mildly described scenes of intimacy. There may be mild profanity or violence.

Most traditional Regencies fit this category, as well Harlequin Romance and Silhouette Romance titles. Authors who tend to write Sweet romances include Betty Neels, Nicole Burnham, Lisa Wingate, and Donna Simpson. Many Harlequin American Romances are written with subtle sensuality. Authors who write at this level of sensuality include Pamela Morsi, LaVyrle Spencer, Debbie Macomber, and Deborah Smith. Traditional Regency authors who tend to write books with subtle sensuality include Patricia Oliver and Karen Harbaugh.

Hot:
There may be detailed sex scenes. There may be profanity and/or graphic violence.

Series lines that are generally considered Hot include Harlequin American Romance and Silhouette Special Edition. Authors who often write at this level of sensuality include Nora Roberts, Susan Wiggs, Rebecca York, Judith Arnold, Mary Balogh, Edith Layton, and Candace Camp.

Other examples of Hot are most Harlequin Temptations and Blazes, as well as a good number of Silhouette Desires. Authors who tend to write Hot romances include J.D. Robb, Leanne Banks, Stephanie Laurens, Gaelen Foley, Karen Marie Moning, Linda Howard, Lisa Kleypas, Susan Andersen, Sherrilyn Kenyon, and pre-Romantic Supense Julie Garwood.

Wild Ride:
There may be graphic sex scenes, including multiple partners and or alternate lifestyles. There may be explicit adult language and/or graphic violence. (e.g., Erotic Romance, High Fantasy, Thrillers...) Within RomCon®'s web site, this is referred to as Erotic Romance.

Many Harlequin Blaze titles are erotic romance as are many of Kensington's Brava line. Authors who are writing erotic romance include "old-line" authors such as Susan Johnson, Thea Devine, and Bertrice Small (who never met a manroot she didn't love), and newer authors such as Alison Kent, Emma Holly, Cheryl Holt, and Angela Knight.  

Blood Thirsty:
Sensuality is not the focus of the book, but there may be graphic violence, bloody scenes, or horrific scenes with frightening or intense content. (e.g., Horror, Thrillers, High Fantasy...)  

What RomCon® does not permit--EVER
Taboo subjects include pedophilia, rape or incest, necrophilia, hate messages to any race, gender, religion, or sexuality, bestiality, main characters under the age of 18, and our definition of pornography. Scenes that depict abuse or harm to women will not be condoned, approved or allowed. Ever. RomCon® has, and will, refuse submissions of any kind (blogs, reviews, Readers' Crown/Reader Rating entries, etc.) based on any subject we deem inappropriate.