I was thinking of how much Uly loved Family Unit, so much so that he thought it should be made into a movie. Then I thought about how several AE members who post on the m/m romance forum were really jazzed about The Salisbury Key, and that's where the rant started.
I liked The Salisbury Key when it seemed like it was a contemporary, but then it got really woo-woo out there with conspiracies, the science, and archeological things towards the end. It just got all too much for me. I like what looks like a contemporary to stay a contemporary, and not turn into a big suspense-thriller with things going on that could have world-changing effects. If I wanted possibly world-changing happenings and far-ranging conspiracies in a book, I would read those suspense-thrillers. So that's where I think the labeling on that one was wrong for me, and the reviews I saw didn't go into how out there it all got at the end. I'm fine with alternate universe if I know it's alternate universe. I just need to know that.
(Added: I looked it up, and the tag line for The Salisbury Key is: "Can love repair a shattered life in time to save the world?" So there is a bit about saving the world. And I do blow past tag lines that are rhetorical questions. It's dumb because you know the answer is yes if it's a question about a romance working out when the book is in the romance genre. I didn't parse out the tag line, it's true.)
It's not just one author. There have been a few others I've been upset with when it was a contemporary, and then suddenly the antagonists tried to kill one or both of the heroes. One of those was labeled a romantic comedy. Trying to kill someone takes it out of romantic comedy, in my opinion. If I expect there will be violence in a book, I'm generally okay with it. For instance, in Fighting in France, in the Big War series, I pretty much took the trench warfare and charges over the top in stride. I knew there would be a lot of death, and that conditions were horrible. I was prepared for reading it. Yes, it was fiction, but based on real-life events.
I want my light and fluffy romances to stay light and fluffy, and I expect a contemporary romance to stay modest in scope. Not that things can't happen, just not world-changing suspense-thriller things, or sudden veers into the paranormal, or villains going from mild villainy to trying to kill the protagonists. It's about the labeling and what to expect.