Is Gothic Romance the same as Dark Romance?

This question of Gothic Romance versus Dark Romance books is something I have been toying with for a while now.

The phenomenon of interchangeable terminology in the realm of romance is common. This can often be attributed to the evolution of language over time. Causing the terms to be outdated or unpopular, leading to their replacement with more contemporary words.  

In the context of romance, the term Gothic Romance has undergone a transformation and has been replaced by the more current term, Dark Romance. Many term Gothic as literature and not romance to keep the “purity” of gothic literature intact. As a reader of both I think it is time we bring these books out of the shadows and give them more light!

Gothic Romances  

What is the definition of Gothic Romance? Gothic romance is a romance that deals with desolate and mysterious and grotesque events. This is  a novel that will deal with events far removed from everyday life.  

The purpose of a Gothic Romance is all about getting the right mood across to the reader. The story should be suspenseful and thrilling with some sort of mysterious element, with a strong focus on the romantic aspect of the story. Gothic Romances should create emotional response when reading.  

The New York City Library has a breif history of Gothic Romance

Current popular authors that writes Gothic Romance is Maggie Cole, Penelope Sky, JL Beck & Company and H.D. Carlton.

Dark Romances  

What defines a Dark Romance?

Dark Romane is a literary sub-genre of romance. Reflecting popular fascination with the irrational, and often the dark sides of society. The Dark Romance Story is about how characters survive dark places and dark deeds. Also how the experience changes them, and how love helps our characters overcome their trauma.  

Some of my favorite Dark Romance authors Mila Finelli, Neva Altaj, Zoe Blake and Bella J.

Looking at the definition of Gothic and Dark Romance the fundamentals of them they are very similar if not the same. Both are going to have shadows of the darkness of society within them. 

Gothic is going to be a more story and plot driven read while I feel like Dark is going to be very heavy on Character Development.  Both of these MUST have an HEA in order to be considered a Romance.

Do I think we should go back to calling Dark Romance, Gothic Romance?  

I’m uncertain whether we should revert to using “Gothic Romance” instead of “Dark Romance.” In my opinion, “Gothic” has established credibility as a sub-genre of romance and may be more appealing to readers. In contrast, “Dark” may convey a less approachable vibe and discourage some readers from exploring this type of literature. Overall, the choice of terminology depends on the specific characteristics of the story and the author’s preferences.