I dunno, I would've liked to see a way to keep the Imperial Romulan State around as a Federation ally without a war breaking out. I mean, I'd welcome seeing a departure from the usual Trek tendency to define states along species lines. And really, Romulans are just an offshoot of Vulcans already, so if they could split once, they could do it again.
I agree. The current novelverse has borrowed heavily from the Duaneverse, and the Duaneverse Rihannsu have all sorts of divisions--family lineages and nation-states were the major dividing factors on the Two Worlds in the first Rihannsu books, splits between the homeworlds and the first- and second-generation colonies (and the "client worlds") added in the latter. I can readily imagine that the borders of the Imperial Romulan State were drawn on some of those lines.
The problem is that outside of the Duaneverse novels these divisions haven't been talked about at all. Romulans have been presented as a homogeneous civilization--true to a degree, probably to a greater degree than humans, but only to a point. The novelverse would have needed much more elaboration on internal divisions within Romulan society for this to have not seemed contrived. IMHO.