Who are Australia and NZ’s favourite romance writers?

by |August 14, 2017

The Romantic Book of the Year Award, affectionately known as the RUBY, is the Romance Writers of Australia’s premier award celebrating the best romantic fiction from Australian and NZ authors. Over the weekend, the 2017 Ruby winners were announced. 

Congratulation to all the below winners, including Avril Tremayne, who was voted as the overall RUBY winner for 2017!

2017 Long Romance Winner + Overall 2017 RUBY Winner

Escaping Mr Right by Avril TremayneEscaping Mr Right
by Avril Tremayne

Television reporter Chloe Masters is a woman of cool control …except when Casanova rugby league player Nick Savage is around. Then cool control goes out the window. Her boyfriend, Marcus, is everything she ever wanted – but it’s getting harder to deny her body’s reaction to Nick …

Nick Savage has been head-over-heels since he first laid eyes on Chloe – just a moment too late to stop her connecting with his team mate, Marcus. But when the goalposts shift and he and Chloe are thrown together on a week away, Nick dares her to get physical in whatever way she wants – with a kiss, a punch or anything in between. And if Chloe claims to feel nothing, he’ll leave her alone for good… Learn more.

INTERVIEW with Avril Tremayne: Historical romance remains my go-to when I want to lose myself completely.

2017 Novella Winner

UnexploredUnexplored by Anna Hackett
by Anna Hackett

One former Navy SEAL. One woman in search of her kidnapped brother. One ancient lost city in the cloud forests of the Andes.

Former Navy SEAL Logan O’Connor is big, rough, and a little wild. He thrived as a SEAL…until he trusted the wrong woman. After a horrible betrayal that almost left him dead, he now works for his best friend at Treasure Hunter Security. He doesn’t like the sand, the jungle, or the mosquitoes, but he gets the job done—protecting archeological digs and expeditions. What he likes even less are liars. As he finds himself heading to Peru with a cool, classy CEO in search of her kidnapped brother, Logan knows one thing: Sydney Granger isn’t telling him the entire truth… Learn more.

INTERVIEW with Anna Hackett: I have been known to drop a few subtle Star Wars references into my stories.

2017 Romantic Elements Winner

Numbered by Amy Andrews and Ros Baxter.Numbered
by Amy Andrews and Ros Baxter

Mathematician and many-time Loser in Love Poppy Devine believes in being prepared. So when she discovers she has breast cancer, all she has to do is dust off the carefully numbered bucket list she prepared years before with her best friend Julia. There are only two problems: Quentin, a gorgeous younger man with rock-star ambitions, wasn’t on her list. And take-a-risk Julia, has suddenly come over all disapproving.

Together with Poppy’s hippy mother Scarlet, the three form an unlikely alliance to help Poppy realise her goals. Sky diving, swimming with sharks, cooking classes in Tuscany, visiting an orphanage in India are all part of the journey. Along the way, Poppy is forced to confront her best friend’s grief… Learn more.

INTERVIEW with Amy Andrews: I often have readers who challenge me to put certain food items into sex scenes.

2017 Short Romance Winner

Breaking Good by Madeline Ash Breaking Good
by Madeline Ash

He wasn’t good for her. He never would be.

At eighteen, Stevie Case finally surrendered to her attraction to bad boy Ethan Rafters, sharing one night with him before she graduated and he skipped town on a one-way road to destruction. Years later, Stevie has hit back life’s curveballs and is no stranger to hard work, but when she finds herself working for Ethan, who’s turned his life around, her world shatters not only because their chemistry is still fierce and undeniable but because fate separated them before she could tell him he has a son.

Ethan desperately wants to be a good father and a partner yet he believes he’ll never be normal… Learn more.

INTERVIEW with Madeline Ash: Believe in yourself. Make writing a priority. Embrace doubt, but then tell it to shove off.


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Winners Comments: Avril Tremayne

How did it feel to win both the long romance category AND the overall RUBY?

Avril: I still hadn’t recovered from being named a finalist, so I was almost too shocked to take it in when my name was called as the winner of the long romance category. When the overall RUBY was announced, I just wanted to scream. (In fact, I think I did do a series of mini-screams at the poor people who came up to congratulate me in the immediate aftermath – sorry all!) I was euphoric – and I still am.

Winners Comments: Madeline Ash

What does winning this award mean to you as an author and RWA member?

Madeline: It feels like an incredible achievement. For a decade, the RUBY has been a “big dream” goal of mine (like many Australian romance writers/authors). I’ve adored the winning books in the past, so to have Breaking Good reach that level of recognition is extremely exciting. As an RWA member, I’m honoured to win the RUBY. The association works hard to foster a high level of respect for the award, both in Australia and internationally, and I am grateful to benefit from the prestige that RWA has cultivated.

Winners Comments: Anna Hackett

What’s next for you? What does your RUBY win mean for your career going forward?

Anna: What’s next for me doesn’t change…get back to my desk and write the next book! I have the next book in the same series as Unexplored coming out very soon. But the RUBY win does mean I head back to my desk feeling very energised and inspired.

Winners Comments: Amy Andrews and Ros Baxter

Was this win even sweeter because you got to share it with your sister?

Amy: This is the third book I’ve written with Ros. Every book has been such a great experience but to win the Ruby with my sister? That has made this book an extra special experience. Winning awards is the perfect antidote to the insecure voice that often dogs you as you write. The one that tells you you’re not good enough, that no one is going to like the book. It’s enormously validating. As an RWA member it means we get to share this accolade with all our peers. Individual success helps to elevate all and the profile of romance as a whole.

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About the Contributor

Anastasia Hadjidemetri is the former editor of The Booktopian and star of Booktopia's weekly YouTube show, Booked with Anastasia. A big reader and lover of books, Anastasia relishes the opportunity to bring you all the latest news from the world of books.


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