Literary Romance: If I Don't Have You with Sareeta Domingo

We explore why romance genre is generally disregarded or overlooked by literary critics, the privileges of being published by a small independent press, and so much more with Sareeta Domingo, an accomplished author whose third novel, If I Don’t Have You, a love story between a Black British journalist and an Afro-Brazilian film-maker is published as part Jacaranda Books and Arts #Twentyin2020 project.


We use the music of ESKA, Prince, Erykah Badu, Neneh Cherry and more to discuss her non-traditional route to publishing, crafting & writing romance stories as an act of resistance, writing ambitious Black women with care, Sareeta Domingo also share her experience for writers who are weighing the option of either the wish to be published by a small independent or an establishment publishing house. For more information of Sareeta’s work, visit

Listen Sareeta Domingo’s specially curated playlist for Books & Rhymes: The Podcast on Spotify and Deezer. Continue the conversation by posting your thoughts on this episode on Twitter and Instagram by tagging us @BooksAndRhymes

Titles Authored or Edited by Sareeta Domingo


-      If I don’t Have you

-      Who’s Loving You

-      The Nearness of you

-      Love, Secret Santa


Titles (and Poem) Referenced in the discussion:


-      The Ballad of J. Alfred Prufrock (a poem) – T. S. Elliott

-      The outsiders - SE Hinton

-      Beloved - Toni Morrison

-      Little fires everywhere – Celeste Ng

-      The sky is everywhere -

-      Ordinary people – Diana Evans

-      My Sister The Serial Killer – Oyinkan Braithwaite

-      Stay with me – Ayobami Adebayo

-      Secret Lives of Baba Segi’s Wives – Lola Shoneyin

-      Behold The Dreamers – Mbolo Mbue

-      The Terrible - Yrsa Daley Ward

-      Simone is Still Single – Lisa Bent

-      Bad Love – Maame Blue


Recommended Romance authors:


-      Alyssa Cole

-      Talia Hibbert


Songs Referenced in the discussion:


-      Gatekeeper – ESKA

-      The Ballad of Dorothy Parker – Prince

-      Love Has fallen on Me – Chaka Khan

-      The Nearness of You – Ella Fitgerald

-      If I Don’t Have You – Gregory Isaac

-      If I Don’t Have You (cover)– Sareeta Domingo

-      Who’s Loving You – Jackson 5

-      Orange Moon – Erykah...

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