My daughter has a degree in English and Medieval History. Her mother writes historical romance novels. Wanna know what she likes to read?
Fantasy, or as we call them around here, "Shadow of the Wolf of the Moon" books. Because really, it seems like wolves and shadows and the moon feature in just about every title. Kind of like Bride, Desire, Rogue, etc. in historical romance titles.
Anyhoodle, I finally asked her why she likes those books, especially the pseudo-medieval ones, but doesn't read historical romances or historical novels.
Here answer was, basically, because she doesn't know what's going to happen in the fantasy books.
That's her main problem with historical novels especially -- she knows what, historically, has to happen and so will happen.
With historical romances, there are also certain givens (the hero and heroine will survive, for instance) that take away from the surprise factor.
I'm wondering how many potential or former historical romance readers have wandered over to fantasy because they want a more unpredictable read.