I posed five options (i) No Sex, (ii) Foreplay Only, (iii) Non-Explicit Sex, (iv) Explicit Sex, (v) As Hot As You Can Get, and then placed them on here (my humble blog) and on Goodreads.
Here are the results.
What are we seeing here? Readers want some sort of sex in genre books. Building the tension between the protagonists must have a satisfactory conclusion otherwise readers feel cheated. And, it seems the Non-Explicit Sex readers are tied with the Hot As You Can Get lot.
It's an interesting conundrum, and one authors have to face when deciding whether or not to include a sex scene in their books. Or how hot to make it.
Mind you, this refers to New Adult/Adult books NOT Young Adult or erotica. That's another subject entirely.
Personally, I prefer an explicit scene which enhances the story and reflects the growing relationship between the main characters. In other words, were I to remove that scene the plot would be adversely affected.
So, authors, which option will you choose for your next book?
Feel free to leave a comment. I'd love to hear your opinions.