<i>His Wicked Seduction</i>: Exclusive Excerpt His Wicked Seduction: Exclusive Excerpt Lauren Smith "Lucien slid his hand down over her bottom, catching her in his grasp..." <i>The Billion Dollar Player</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Billion Dollar Player: Exclusive Excerpt Mandy Baxter "Ultimately, she was doing them both a favor by turning him down..." <i>The Accidental Countess</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Accidental Countess: Exclusive Excerpt Valerie Bowman "(She'd) wish him and Pen well on their nuptials and try her best not to think of him again..." <i>The Amish Bride of Ice Mountain</i>: Excerpt The Amish Bride of Ice Mountain: Excerpt Kelly Long "Ach, he’s so formal, maybe he’ll not attempt a kiss at all…"
From The Blog
October 28, 2014
Captain Marvel Movie in the Works!
Heather Waters (redline_)
October 28, 2014
Real-Life Rats and Creepy Villains
shelley coriell
October 24, 2014
Friday Beefcake: Basketball Picks!
Team H & H
October 24, 2014
Best Paranormal Romance Date Movies
Elizabeth Hunter
October 23, 2014
Sweet Gestures in Romance Novels
Scarlettleigh
Thu
Oct 30 2014 11:10am

Cover Alert: Nalini Singh’s Shards of Hope!

Shards of Hope by Nalini SinghNalini Singh has just revealed the cover for Shards of Hope, the fourteenth book in her Psy-Changeling series. Here's the official description:

The “smoldering heat, epic romance, and awesome action”* of Nalini Singh's New York Times bestselling series continues as two Arrows find themselves caught in a chilling conspiracy that spans all three races…

Awakening wounded in a darkened cell, their psychic abilities blocked, Aden and Zaira know they must escape. But when the lethal soldiers break free from their mysterious prison, they find themselves in a harsh, inhospitable landscape far from civilization. Their only hope for survival is to make it to the hidden home of a predatory changeling pack that doesn't welcome outsiders.
And they must survive. A shadowy enemy has put a target on the back of the Arrow squad, an enemy that cannot be permitted to succeed in its deadly campaign. Aden will cross any line to keep his people safe for this new future, where even an assassin might have hope of a life beyond blood and death and pain. Zaira has no such hope. She knows she's too damaged to return from the abyss. Her driving goal is to protect Aden, protect the only person who has ever come back for her no matter what.

This time, even Aden's passionate determination may not be enough—because the emotionless chill of Silence existed for a reason. For the violent, and the insane, and the irreparably broken…like Zaira.

Learn more about or order a copy of Shards of Hope by Nalini Singh, available June 2, 2015:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at iTunes

 

Thu
Oct 30 2014 10:05am

Jane the Virgin 1x03 Recap: No Fireflies Were Hurt in the Making of This Episode

Rafael and Jane in Jane the Virgin Season 1 episode 3, 1x03Are you loving the high drama of telenovella-based Jane the Virgin? It's miraculous! Join us each week as we track Jane, Rafael, and Michael's love triangle, as well as other...complicated...relationships!

Beware! This recap contains spoilers for Season 1, Episode 3 (also known as “Chapter 3) of Jane the Virgin. Read with caution!

So where we were? Jane is still pregnant with her old flame/current boss’s baby. She’s still engaged to Michael. Her mother, Xiomara is still sleeping with Jane’s father, who, Jane doesn’t know about. Petra is still going for her Oscar for the role of caring wife and mother to-be. And Zaz is still dead, impaled on an ice sculpture.

“Chapter Three” opens with young Jane making a wishing on a firefly. Jane gets boobs and then gets the first boyfriend she’s always wanted, but loses the boy when she tells him that she’s waiting to get married until she has sex. Xiomara says she shouldn’t lead with that when it comes to make out time, but Grandma Alba insists that a lie of omission is still a lie. The right man will wait. Teen Jane makes a wish that she would find the right guy…

[Question is, who's the right guy?...]

Thu
Oct 30 2014 9:30am

First Look: Judi Fennell’s What a Woman Gets (November 4, 2014)

What a Woman Gets by Judi FennellJudi Fennell
What a Woman Gets (Manley Maids)
Berkley / November 4, 2014 / $7.99 print, digital

What happens when three irresistibly sexy brothers lose a poker bet to their enterprising sister? They get hired out for her housecleaning venture. Now, the Manley Maids are at your service. Satisfaction guaranteed. It’s what a woman gets...

Business owner Liam Manley has no patience for women like Cassidy Davenport—women happy to spend a man’s money without giving a thought to any actual work. But to make good on his bet, Liam must not only tolerate the couture-clad socialite, he’ll have to clean up after her. Until Cassidy’s father suddenly cuts off her finances. With no money and no home for Liam to clean, Cassidy has no choice but to accept a job offer—as Liam’s new maid…

Liam is eager to teach her a lesson about the real world, but he winds up learning a few things himself. Free from her father’s influence, Cassidy can finally pursue her own life, and winds up showing Liam how resourceful and determined she can be. Not to mention how sexy she is with (or without) that designer wardrobe. But when sparks fly between them, will it be true love…or just another messy affair?

Fish out of Water trope one of your favorites? Then you won’t want to miss Judi Fennell’s What a Woman Gets.

[Unfamiliar waters!]

Thu
Oct 30 2014 8:10am

Throwback Thursday: Laura Kinsale’s Flowers from the Storm

Flowers from the Storm by Laura KinsaleWe've covered Laura Kinsale many, MANY times, and so it's very cool to report that the Old School Romance Book Club has chosen her iconic Flowers From the Storm as its read for November. This book, along with Loretta Chase's Lord of Scoundrels, is frequently mentioned as the best historical romance ever written. If you haven't read it already, this is a great opportunity to see just how an author can make a stroke-addled mathematical genius duke and a Quaker woman fall in love. 

If you have read it already—spoilers ahead!—take a look at the “Confronting the Quakers” Scene from Laura Kinsale’s Flowers from the Storm as well as Kinsale's Top Three Damaged Heroes

Have you read Flowers from the Storm

Wed
Oct 29 2014 4:30pm

First Look: Shannon Stacey’s Her Holiday Man (November 3, 2014)

Her Holiday Man by Shannon StaceyShannon Stacey
Her Holiday Man
Carina Press / November 3, 2014 / $2.99 digital

Christina Forrester is starting over. After a financial scandal sent her ex-husband to prison, she's left raising her young son without any of the comforts of their old life. Budgets, coupons, lawn care—you name it, she's learning to do it all on her own. Well, almost on her own—she'd be lost without Gail Broughton, the kind widow across the street. But when Gail's son comes home, Christina's vow to never trust a man again is put to the test.

Will Broughton left town because he was tired of being “that poor man” who lost his wife and unborn child in a tragic accident. But years have passed and, with his dad gone and his mom alone, it's time to go home. Only his mother's not alone. She's taken Christina under her wing, and the beautiful and determined single mother awakens something in Will he thought was buried forever.

As Will and Christina are forced to spend more time together, feelings that are more than neighborly grow between them. And with Christmas coming and a child filling both houses with holiday cheer, it becomes nearly impossible not to embrace the joy—and the love—in their lives.

Christmas can be a wonderful time filled with family, friends and loved ones, but for many, the season is laden with what could have been.

[Guess we're not talking about not getting a pair of diamond earrings!]

Wed
Oct 29 2014 1:59pm

Announcing New H&H Story “The Gentleman and the Lamplighter” by Summer Devon!

The Gentleman and the Lamplighter by Summer DevonExciting news this afternoon! Heroes and Heartbreakers is positively giddy to announce the upcoming publication of a brand-new original short story, Summer Devon's “The Gentleman and the Lamplighter,” which already has a cover! Get a load of the gorgeous art and read on for all the details:

“The Gentleman and the Lamplighter”
by Summer Devon

You Can’t Walk Away from Love

Destroyed by the death of his former schoolmate yet unable to show it publicly, Giles Fullerton has taken to walking the streets of London in the middle of the night, the only time he can safely mourn the only person he’s ever loved—until one chance meeting with a lamplighter changes everything…

But You Can Walk Toward It

Widower John Banks knows a thing or two about grief, and immediately recognizes a kindred spirit when he finally meets the handsome, haunted gentleman he’s admired from afar. And in fact, the two men discover shared passions and the possibility of a forever love—if they can overcome social taboos, and their own fears…

HeroesandHeartbreakers.com members will be the first to be able to read the story, which will be posted to the site on December 3 (mark your calendars!), so be sure to join up now so that you won't miss a thing. (And don't forget to check the box to subscribe to the newsletter for early access to this and future stories, as well as other exclusive content.)

As usual, the story will also be available as an e-book, due out in January 2015.

We cannot wait to share this wonderful new addition to the H&H short story program with you, and we hope you'll join us on Wednesday, December 3, to read and discuss!

xoxo,
Team H&H

To pre-order or to learn more about Summer Devon's “The Gentleman and the Lamplighter” e-book edition, available on January 6, 2015:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at B&N

Wed
Oct 29 2014 1:45pm

Something For Everyone: Male/Male Romance for October 2014

Foundation of Trust by A.M. ArthurOctober has been designated Queer Romance Month, so it seemed like a perfect time to start a monthly m/m round-up. The slogan of Queer Romance Month is “because love is not a subgenre,” and looking at just some of this month's offerings, we see that m/m relationships aren't an isolated category, but can be found in virtually every type of story. If you're never explored a novel featuring a same sex couple, why not pick your favorite subgenre or trope and have a go?

Small town contemporary
Cost of Repairs Series by A.M. Arthur

Not everyone gets a second chance with their first love.

David Weller thought he had it all—a loving partner who gave him a ring, a steady job he didn’t hate, and so much hope for the future. But in the wake of a devastating diagnosis, everything he thought was solid and real lay in pieces at his feet.

Four years later, he’s still sifting through the rubble of his life. His catering partnership occupies his days, while his nights are filled with dangerous sexual hookups and very bad decisions. Then the last person he ever expected to see again walks back into his life.

Owen Hart’s single biggest regret is the way he was forced to leave David behind—no explanations, no chance to make it right. Until now. Finally free of eight years of lies, Owen’s back for the only man he’s ever loved.

An incendiary encounter in a club proves that time hasn’t weakened their physical connection, but David’s wounds run deeper than Owen’s deception. And if David can’t first forgive, Owen doesn’t have a second chance in hell.  

Arthur's website is titled “Small Towns, Big Love” and this series has a strong emphasis on family, work, and friendship, in addition to plenty of angst and kinky sex, especially in the latest book Foundation of Trust.

Short stories
Another Place in Time by Tamara Allen, Joanna Chambers, K.J. Charles, Kaje Harper, Jordan L. Hawk, Aleksndr Voinov

Welcome to another place in time...where one can be swept away into lands and eras long forgotten.

A self-published anthology for charity featuring six excellent authors, this takes us to five intriguing historical locales and one parallel universe. Along with the more familiar Regency and Medieval settings, check out m/m romances set just after World War I and during World War II.

[We're ready to be drafted for this anthology!]

Wed
Oct 29 2014 12:30pm
Excerpt

His Wicked Seduction: Exclusive Excerpt

Lauren Smith

His Wicked Seduction by Lauren Smith

Horatia Sheridan has been hopelessly in love with Lucien, her brother’s best friend, ever since he rescued her from the broken remains of her parents’ wrecked carriage. His reputation as London’s most notorious rakehell doesn’t frighten her, for under his veneer of cool authority she has glimpsed a man whose wicked desires inspire her own.

Lucien, Marquess of Rochester, has deliberately nurtured a reputation for debauchery that makes every matchmaking mother of the ton quake with fear. His one secret: he is torn between soul-ripping lust for Horatia, and the loyalty he owes her brother.

That loyalty is put to the test when an old enemy of the League threatens Horatia’s life. With Christmas drawing near, he sweeps her away to his country estate, where he can’t resist granting her one wish—to share his bed and his heart.

But sinister forces are lurking, awaiting the perfect moment to exact their revenge by destroying not only whatever happiness Lucien might find in Horatia’s arms, but the lives of those they love.

Warning: This book contains an intelligent lady who is determined to seduce her brother’s friend, a brooding rake whose toy of choice in bed is a little bit of bondage with a piece of red silk, a loyal band of merry rogues and a Christmas love so scorching you’ll need fresh snow to extinguish it.

Get a sneak peek of Lauren Smith's His Wicked Seduction (available November 11, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Horatia still hadn’t changed into her nightclothes. Restlessness had her up well past midnight. Knowing Lucien was somewhere in the house was unsettling, and she worried about that blasted cat. Muff should have been curled up on the extra pillow in her bed, but he was conspicuously absent. There was a chance a passing footman or maid had closed the grates around the fireplace and he hadn’t been able to get back down.

Unwilling to let him stay in the cold chimney all night, Horatia abandoned her room and went in search of the cat. She tried to think of all of the other places he could be, and not the one place she wished she could be at that moment. In Lucien’s arms.

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt from His Wicked Seduction...]

Wed
Oct 29 2014 11:56am

Cover Alert: J.R. Ward Reveals Cover for The Bourbon Kings!

The Bourbon Kings by J.R. WardJ.R. Ward returns in summer 2015 with The Bourbon Kings, a contemporary story about several wealthy Kentucky families who have made their money from bourbon. Entertainment Weekly has just revealed the cover, as well as the news that “The Bourbon Kings has already been optioned for television by Endemol, the same production company behind Big Brother and Deal or No Deal, among others.”

The Bourbon Kings will be released July 28, 2015.

Stick with H&H for more J.R. Ward and Bourbon Kings series news as we get it!

Wed
Oct 29 2014 9:30am

First Look: Elle Kennedy’s Midnight Action (November 4, 2014)

Midnight Action by Elle KennedyElle Kennedy Midnight Action
Signet / November 4, 2014 / $7.99 print, digital

Ex–army ranger Jim Morgan leads a team of elite mercenaries, but eighteen years ago in Paris, he was part of a black ops unit whose mission was to hunt down a rogue operative. In order to trap the criminal, Jim seduced Noelle, the man’s daughter—a ruthless act that cost him the love of his life and turned her into a mortal enemy. Now he can’t trust her, but he still desires her. He also needs her help....

Older, wiser, and unwilling to play the fool again, Noelle runs a group of highly skilled assassins. And she’s just been offered the hit of the century: Eliminate Jim Morgan. History gives them no reason to trust each other, but with their lives in jeopardy at the hands of a common enemy, the lines between love and hate are soon blurred. Now Noelle and Jim must face the past if they want to have a future—let alone a future together.

If you ever wondered just where the line between love and hate is, you need only pick up a copy of Elle Kennedy’s Midnight Action, the most recent novel in the Killer Instincts series.

[It's a thin line!]

Wed
Oct 29 2014 8:16am

We Need Diverse Books—Yes or Hell Yes?

The We Need Diverse Books campaign was focused, initially, on diversity in Young Adult literature, but the movement has grown to include books of all genres, and we are definitely behind diversity in romance novels as well as other genres.

Author John Green did a short clip in support of the campaign, and says, “We need to reflect the reality of our communities...but it's also really important to see The Other; one of the magical things about reading [...] is that it helps me to imagine the life outside of myself...when you don't see the lives of others in stories, it's difficult to imagine them complexly.”

Romance readers read about “The Other” in several of its subgenres already, including historical (unless you're a duchess), paranormals (unless you're a vampire), and romantic suspense (unless you're a special ops soldier).  

What's the last book that exposed you to a “life outside of [your]self?”

Tue
Oct 28 2014 4:30pm

Raising Them Right: The Best Parents in Romance Novels from Quinn, Dane, Kleypas, Banks, and Moning!

The Bridgertons Happily Ever After by Julia QuinnParents/guardians play important roles in everyone’s lives and especially those of fictional characters. Though with the rise of New Adult, parental involvement in romance novels seems to be going the way of Disney films, with little to no parental involvement at all. Based on some crowdsourcing via Twitter and HeroesandHeartbreakers.com, here’s the parents who readers said are the best and why:

Violet Bridgerton from Julia Quinn’s Bridgerton series:

This was one of the overwhelming favorites from readers. Violet Bridgerton is apparently a saint. After all, she has eight kids to look after and their assorted cousins, in-laws and a corgi (corgi!), too. Some have requested she get her own HEA and after doing a little research, Violet gets a story in “Violet in Bloom” part of Quinn’s The Bridgertons: Happily Ever After explaining how she met the love of her life, Edmund.

Edward and Polly Chase from Lauren Dane’s Chase brothers series:

Another overwhelming response came for this pair. The four Chase brothers certainly seem like a handful: one’s a sheriff, one falls in love with a down-on-her luck woman and two have to convince their respective heroines that they love them. Tie this is in with the standard hot sex and a little suspense for which Dane is known and you’re off to the races. Raising four boys plus guiding them in the trials and tribulations of love isn’t easy, but Polly and Edward provide a stable home and great guidance making this parenting pair a reader favorite.

[Great parents=Great Kids...]

Tue
Oct 28 2014 3:28pm

Marvel Announces Captain Marvel Movie, Super-Sized Avengers 3, and More!

Captain Marvel #1 by Kelly Sue DeConnick, David Lopez, and Lee LoughridgeBIG news out of Marvel's fan event today, including the fact that the Marvel Cinematic Universe's (MCU's) first female-led film, Captain Marvel, is in the works! While it's not the Black Widow (with or without Hawkeye) movie this fan had hoped to see (sigh), this is wonderful news for those of us who've been clamoring for a woman to finally get her own standalone story.

Other major announcements from Marvel Studios head honcho Kevin Feige:

  • Black Panther will hit the big screen on November 3, 2017; even bigger news, it already has a star—Chadwick Boseman, clearly our newest superhero crush
  • Avengers 3: Infinity War will be released in TWO parts, a year apart: Part 1 will be out on May 4, 2018, and Part 2 following (relatively) shortly after, on May 3, 2019 (WOW that all feels far away for more of our beloved Avengers)
  • Captain America 3's subtitle is “Civil War,” confirming all the rumors we've been hearing about what a beast of a film that'll be (Robert Downey Jr. will return as Iron Man for this one); it'll be in our eyeballs May 6, 2016 (Captain America: The Winter Soldier was SO good that we have high high hopes for this one)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy 2 will be released May 5, 2017, earlier than expected
  • Doctor Strange (which may or may not star Benedict Cumberbatch, as the Hollywood trades are reporting) will bow May 6, 2016
  • Thor: Ragnarok will see the return of both Thor AND Loki on July 28, 2018 for a third Thor standalone
  • Inhumans was perhaps the biggest Phase 3 surprise (at least, I hadn't heard any rumblings about this one) and will be released on November 2, 2018

Anybody else suffering from sensory overload? How are we feeling? Who wants to join me in clamoring for Battlestar Galactica's Katee Sackhoff (so terrific as Kara “Starbuck” Thrace)  as Carol Danvers/Captain Marvel?

ETA 10/28/14 4:46pm: Fiege had this to say to Entertainment Weekly in response to questions about a potential Black Widow standalone film:

Black Widow couldn’t be more important as an Avenger herself. Her part in Avengers: Age of Ultron is very, very big and further develops and further enhances her character. The plans we have for her throughout the rest of the Avengers saga is very, very big. A lynchpin, in fact, to those films. So instead of taking her out, instead of doing a prequel, which we haven’t done yet, we’re continuing the forward momentum and continuity of the cinematic universe of which Widow is a key, key part.

So it looks like that's a no on the standalone, at least for now, but that Marvel's aware she's beloved and will continue to play a big role in future films, which...hey, maybe a character as enigmatic as she is just works better this way. I admit I love what we've seen of her so far and that it's been great seeing her show up as often as she has.

Tue
Oct 28 2014 2:00pm

First Look: Donna Alward’s Treasure on Lilac Lane (October 28, 2014)

Treasure on Lilac Lane by Donna AlwardDonna Alward
Treasure on Lilac Lane (Jewell Cove #2)
St. Martin's Press / October 28, 2014 / $7.99 print, digital

Once upon a time, Rick Sullivan had a promising future. One of Jewell Cove's star athletes and reigning heartthrobs, he joined the Marines and had the world in the palm of his hand...until it all came crashing down. His honorable discharge doesn't make him the hometown hero everyone wants him to be, and there's little reprieve from the demons that haunt him at night. Still, even though it seems that all hope is gone, fate has something else in store...

Just hearing Rick's name is enough to give Jess Collins a headache. Years ago, they'd been close. Now she barely knows the man Rick has become since his return from service...then again, Jess isn't that same young, naïve girl anymore either. And while there's a powerful attraction between them—one that yields a greater passion than Jess could have ever imagined—both are wary about opening their hearts to love...and loss. 

But happy endings don't come easily when long-buried secrets insist on rising to the surface. Will their pasts tear them apart—or can love find a way to heal them both?

One of the most important aspects of a romance novel is the trek the characters take to their happy ever after. We each have different preferences on what that journey should look like, from difficult and tortuous, to light and funny and somewhere in between. For me, the “in between” is the perfect sweet spot. In these type of stories, the hero and heroine are in a troubling place, but neither one needs to save the other. Each gathers up the necessary courage to move forward and as they move forward, new opportunities open. Of course one of those opportunities is a new love interest. In Treasure on Lilac Lane, Donna Alward hits that perfect spot, writing a convincing story of growth and change filled with warmth and genuineness. Treasure on Lilac Lane is a feel good story that just reaffirms our belief that dark days can be left behind, and better days are ahead.

[That's a treasure at the end of a book rainbow!]

Tue
Oct 28 2014 12:30pm

Loving the Unlovable: Real-Life Rats and Creepy Villains

The Buried by Shelley CoriellToday we're joined by author Shelley Coriell, whose book The Buried is out today! The Buried is the second book in her Apostles series, and in this book, a young woman has been buried alive somewhere, and the clock is ticking to get her out. What kind of monster would bury a woman alive? Those are the kind of monsters Shelley is here to talk about. Thanks, Shelley!

When my three daughters were young they had a set of fancy-hooded Norwegian pet rats: Choco, Chip, and Cookie. After the beady-eyed, long-tailed creatures entered our home, I refused to use the “R” word. I called them “small friendly rodents that were particularly good with children.”

I was not alone. When my mother, an Iowa farm girl who’d seen her fair share of barn rats, saw our new pets, she shivered. “It’s the tails, Shelley. They’re just too creepy. Can the vet cut them off?”

Two months into pet ownership, I began to see some interesting occurrences in the newly-expanded Coriell household. When DD#2 called her rat by name, Chip scampered across the room and into my daughter’s arms. Cookie, the cuddle-bunny of the group, loved to curl up in DD#3’s lap while my daughter did her homework. And armed with Life Cereal dotted with peanut butter, DD#1 taught fearless, indefatigable Choco to turn off a light switch and to dive from her head and onto the bed. Clearly, these small friendly rodents were smart, social, and most importantly, loved by my daughters.

[Beauty is in the eye of the beholder...]

Tue
Oct 28 2014 11:00am

Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveal from Lori Handeland!

Today we're thrilled to reveal the covers for a brand new series of books by Lori Handeland in which three sisters, separated by time, magic, and a dangerous past, find one another again—just in time to track down a killer!

[Learn more about the series and meet one of the three sisters...]

Tue
Oct 28 2014 9:30am

First Look: Sonali Dev’s A Bollywood Affair (October 28, 2014)

A Bollywood Affair by Sonali DevSonali Dev
A Bollywood Affair
Kensington / October 28, 2014 / $15.00 print, $13.50 digital

Mili Rathod has been bound by marriage since she was four years old. But when her husband shows no sign of claiming her after twenty years of waiting, Mili grabs the chance to leave India and come to America on a scholarship.

Playboy filmmaker Samir ''Sam'' Rathod is Bollywood's favorite bad boy. He'll do anything for his big brother - even travel halfway across the globe to take care of the ''wife'' who just crawled out of his brother's past. Yet Mili isn't the simple village girl Sam expected. She's a whirlwind who sucks him into her roommate's elaborate elopement and soon has him drowning in her onyx eyes. And though Mili fancies herself in love with his big brother, the husband she has never met, Sam is hoping for a very different ending.

In Sonali Dev's A Bollywood Affair, Mili Rathod hasn’t seen her husband in twenty years—not since she was promised to him at the age of four. Yet marriage has allowed Mili a freedom rarely given to girls in her village. Her grandmother has even allowed her to leave India and study in America for eight months, all to make her the perfect modern wife. Which is exactly what Mili longs to be—if her husband would just come and claim her.

[An affair of the smart!]

Tue
Oct 28 2014 8:20am

When Do You Start Reading Holiday Romances?

As you can tell, holiday romances are being released now in advance of the holiday buying (and reading!) season. Many people won't even think about the holidays until after Halloween, and some people even go so far as to refuse to do anything Christmas-oriented until after Thanksgiving.

But meanwhile, the books with their snowy covers and people in sweaters are on the shelves now.

Do you read holiday romances in general? If so, when do you start?

Mon
Oct 27 2014 4:30pm

First Look: Valerie Bowman’s The Accidental Countess (October 28, 2014)

The Accidental Countess by Valerie BowmanValerie Bowman
The Accidental Countess
St. Martin's Press / October 28, 2014 / $7.99 print, digital

For seven long years, Lady Cassandra Monroe has waited for the man of her dreams to return from the war. Unfortunately, he happens to be engaged to her flighty cousin. What Cass wouldn’t give to take her cousin’s place! When he mistakes Cass for Patience Bunbury, a fictitious friend her cousin has invented to escape social obligations…even with her future husband, Cass thinks this is her chance.

After defeating Napoleon at Waterloo, Captain Julian Swift is not quite ready to settle down and enter into his unwanted arranged marriage—especially when the real object of his affection turns out to be a beguiling beauty he meets at a party. Patience Bunbury is witty, independent, passionate…and, unbeknownst to him, the cousin of his current fiancée. When the truth about Cass comes out—and Julian  discovers that their courtship is anything but accidental—will he surrender his heart to a woman who really is too good to be true.

There is nothing quite like a Regency romp. The silliness and witty banter and house parties and the absolute certainty that, no matter how bad things are looking, they really, truly will work out in the end. Valerie Bowman's The Accidental Countess is a gender-swap take on Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, with all the love and faux rivals. There is even an imaginary Bunbury.

[We're Wilde about this story!]

Mon
Oct 27 2014 2:00pm
Excerpt

The Billion Dollar Player: Exclusive Excerpt

Mandy Baxter

The Billion Dollar Player by Mandy Baxter

In The Billion Dollar Player by Mandy Baxter, Jase Blackwell, starting tight end for the Dallas Cowboys, is a pro when it comes to football—and to women. Never one to shy away from a challenge, “Billion Dollar Blackwell” is finally able to get the cute waitress he’s had his eye on out for a little fun. But when their steamy encounters inspire Jase to play better than he ever has before, he has to wonder if this exciting woman is more than just a good luck charm…

Avery Lockhart doesn’t understand why a pro football player would want to go out with her. Incredibly wealthy and undeniably sexy, Jase Blackwell is everything she thinks she’s not. Getting a little closer to this enigmatic billionaire, however, proves too much for Avery to resist. But as their passion heats up, so does Jase’s game play, and soon, the rumors start to fly. Is Avery only being kept around to ease Jace’s pre-game superstitions? Or, like she believes, does their connection run deeper…?

Get a sneak peek of Mandy Baxter's The Billion Dollar Player (available November 4, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of Chapters 1 & 2.

Chapter 1

“How’s the groin, Jason? You gonna be one hundred percent for Sunday, son?”

Steve McNealy, the offensive coordinator, always talked to Jase like he was still in Pee-Wee football instead of a twenty-seven-year-old man with a college career and four years of pro ball under his belt. Though, in relation to the years with the NFL that Steve could claim, Jase guessed he was sort of a pup.

“I’m good to go, Coach. I’ll be tearin’ it up next week.”

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt of The Billion Dollar Player...]