STARRED REVIEW
April 10, 2019

2019 RITAs: finalists and controversy

Feature by

The 2019 RITA finalists were announced a few weeks ago, and in a depressing, expected turn of events, were sadly lacking in almost any representation of the authors of color who have had a large hand in the skyrocketing popularity of the genre. Only three out of this year’s 80 finalists were non-white authors, and the resulting outcry from the romance writing and fan communities was swift and passionate.

STARRED REVIEW
April 10, 2019

2019 RITAs: finalists and controversy

Feature by

The 2019 RITA finalists were announced a few weeks ago, and in a depressing, expected turn of events, were sadly lacking in almost any representation of the authors of color who have had a large hand in the skyrocketing popularity of the genre. Only three out of this year’s 80 finalists were non-white authors, and the resulting outcry from the romance writing and fan communities was swift and passionate.

April 10, 2019

2019 RITAs: finalists and controversy

Feature by

The 2019 RITA finalists were announced a few weeks ago, and in a depressing, expected turn of events, were sadly lacking in almost any representation of the authors of color who have had a large hand in the skyrocketing popularity of the genre. Only three out of this year’s 80 finalists were non-white authors, and the resulting outcry from the romance writing and fan communities was swift and passionate.

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The 2019 RITA finalists were announced a few weeks ago, and in a depressing, expected turn of events, were sadly lacking in almost any representation of the authors of color who have had a large hand in the skyrocketing popularity of the genre. Only three out of this year’s 80 finalists were non-white authors, and the resulting outcry from the romance writing and fan communities was swift and passionate.

Romance Writers of America (RWA) board member Courtney Milan discussed the systematic bias within the organization, which gives out the RITAs every year. And author Bronwen Fleetwood crunched the numbers and presented a damning overview of the RITAs lack of representation over the past 20 years. And just last week, The Guardian published an in-depth exploration of the RWA and its chronic difficulties with representation and diversity.

The RWA has since released a statement addressing the concerns and pledging to change the way RITA submissions are scored and judged.

The RITAs will be awarded June 26 during this year’s RWA conference in New York City. See a partial list of the finalists below.

 

Best First Book
Celebrity Spin Doctor by Celia Mulder

Lady in Waiting by Marie Tremayne

The Last Wolf by Maria Vale

A Wicked Kind of Husband by Mia Vincy

With Love in Sight by Christina Britton

 

Contemporary Romance: Long
Bad Bachelor by Stefanie London

Best of Luck by Kate Clayborn

The Heartless Boyfriend by Erika Kelly

Long Shot by Kennedy Ryan

Luck of the Draw by Kate Clayborn

Melt for You by J.T. Geissinger

A Tall, Dark Cowboy Christmas by Maisey Yates

 

Erotic Romance
Picture Perfect Cowboy by Tiffany Reisz

Sinful Games by Shelly Alexander

Three-Way Split by Elia Winters

Total Exposure by J.A. Huss

 

Historical Romance: Long
An Earl Like You by Caroline Linden

Lady in Waiting by Marie Tremayne

A Scandalous Deal by Joanna Shupe

A Wicked Kind of Husband by Mia Vancy

 

Historical Romance: Short
The Devil to Pay by K.C. Bateman

A Duke in the Night by Kelly Bowen

Hell’s Belle by Annabelle Anders

Never Dare a Wicked Earl by Renee Ann Miller

What Ales the Earl by Sally MacKenzie

With Love in Sight by Christina Britton

 

Paranormal Romance
To Catch a Rogue by Bec McMaster

Dearest Ivie by J.R. Ward

Debriefing the Dead by Kerry Blaisdell

Haunted Hearts by Kimberly Dean

The Last Wolf by Maria Vale

Out of Body by Suzanne Brockmann

Wretched by Cara Crescent

 

Romantic Suspense
The Bastard’s Bargain by Katee Robert

Before We Were Strangers by Brenda Novak

Consumed by J.R. Ward

Cut and Run by Mary Burton

Fearless by Elizabeth Dyer

Reckless by Tonya Burrows

Relentless by Elizabeth Dyer

 

See the full list of finalists.

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