Dilemma. How to fit a book into a recognised genre slot?
I am trying to work out where my new idea for a Single Title Book would be classified – by a literary agent, a publisher and a bookseller.
MYSTERY? or ROMANCE?
Here are the key aspects of the idea:
* Contemporary city location – not small town.
* The heroine is the amateur female detective trying to solve a puzzle which is very personal to her – while holding down a normal job in which she is skilled.
* Witty but not laugh-ou- loud dialogue and hero/heroine banter- intended to be a fun read. [Think Jenny Crusie and some Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Rachel Gibson etc.]
* Romantic – hero and heroine meet and form a relationship by the end of the book, but no closure.
* No violence and medium sensuality rating – no detailed sex scenes or gory thriller blood-fests.
* Intended to be the first book in a series for this amateur female detective.
*Not a hard Romantic Suspense Novel aka Tami Hoag, Nora Roberts et al but more of a Light Crime Fun read.
*The suspense element is the main plot device – the heroine has more baggage than Victoria Beckham, and the crime throws her out of her comfort zone – enter the hero stage left.
At first I thought it would qualify as a Cozy Mystery but then this is a contemporary city location, with the feel of Single Title Romance with some amateur detective work as a plot device. But not a Romantic Comedy.
I recall speaking to a UK literary agent several years ago and her view was that in the UK a light style of Romantic Suspense would definitely be pitched as a Romance, while in the US.? I am not so sure. And the largest market for this type of novel does seem to be the US.
More research needed methinks. Wish me luck!