<i>Not Quite a Wife</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Not Quite a Wife: Exclusive Excerpt Mary Jo Putney "Seeing her brought back a shocking array of sensual memories..." <i>A Scandal to Remember</i>: Exclusive Excerpt A Scandal to Remember: Exclusive Excerpt Elizabeth Essex "Stranded on a remote island, passion blazes between them as hot as the sun..." Now Win <i>This!</i>: Sherrilyn Kenyon’s <i>Son of No One</i> Now Win This!: Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Son of No One Team H & H Enter for a chance to win the Collector's Edition and read an exclusive excerpt! H&H Reads <i>First Grave on the Right</i> (5 of 6) H&H Reads First Grave on the Right (5 of 6) Darynda Jones Grim Reapers are people too! Join us as H&H Reads First Grave on the Right
From The Blog
August 22, 2014
H&H Debriefing: Gothic Heroes!
Team H & H
August 21, 2014
Best Reads of August 2014
Team H & H
August 19, 2014
Top 5 Things I Learned from Doctor Who
Victoria Janssen
August 18, 2014
Men in Uniform: Hot or Not?
Kristi Rose
August 15, 2014
Friday Beefcake: Swimsuit Edition
Team H & H
Fri
Aug 22 2014 4:00pm

First Look: Anna Campbell’s What a Duke Dares (August 26, 2014)

What Duke Dares by Anna CampbellAnna Campbell
What a Duke Dares (Sons of Sin #3)
Grand Central / August 26, 2014 / $8.00 print, $7.99 digital

What woman in her right mind would say no to marrying the dashing Duke of Sedgemoor? Miss Penelope Thorne, that's who. She's known Camden Rothermere since they were children-and she also knows she'd bring nothing but scandal to his name.

Cam can hardly believe Penelope turned down his proposal. But if she wants to run off to the Continent and set the rumor mill ablaze, he can't stop her. Then her brother's dying request sends him to bring home the one woman he thought he'd finally gotten over.

The only way they'll both get back to London without their reputations in tatters is to pretend they're married during the journey. That means kissing like they mean it and even sharing a bed-until it becomes hard to tell where the game ends and true desire begins . . .

At the Romantic Times Convention in May, Lisa Kleypas declared during a panel that what she hopes for the future of historical romance is a return to the lush, sweeping, epic dramas of the past. In my mind, this is some delicious cross between bodice rippers that got our blood pumping and the tamer but still romantic and memorable historical hits of recent years. And What a Duke Dares, the third novel in Anna Campbell's Sons of Sin series, is a good start to usher in this hybrid that represents the best of both worlds.

[Dare to tell us more!...]

Fri
Aug 22 2014 2:53pm

H&H Debriefing: Gothic Heroes!

Another day, another way to follow H&H—we're now on YouTube! Subscribe to the HeroesnHearts channel to catch weekly Debriefings in which Team H&H's Heather, Megan, and Jenn discuss what's hot in romance.

In this week's episode, we tackle Susan Elizabeth Phillips' Heroes Are My Weakness, which Megan is reading now and for which H&H has a sexy excerpt here, with a guest post from SEP herself to come on Monday. Then the convo turns to our general love of Gothic romances and their delicously brooding heroes.

Missed last week's? Catch up on our chat about identifying as romance fans here; we'd love to hear your experiences too!

*Note: For some reason Heather says our SEP excerpt is from Chapter 3 but she's crazy so just ignore that; it's a selected scene from later on in the book.

Fri
Aug 22 2014 2:00pm

First Look: Kristen Callihan’s Evernight (August 26, 2014)

Evernight by Kristen CallihanKristen Callihan
Evernight (Darkest London #5)
Forever / August 26, 2014 / $6.00 print, $5.99 digital

Once the night comes . . .

Will Thorne is living a nightmare, his sanity slowly being drained away by a force he can't control. His talents have made him the perfect assassin for hire. But as he loses his grip on reality, there is no calming him-until he finds his next target: the mysterious Holly Evernight.

Love must cast aside the shadows

Holly cannot fathom who would put a contract on her life, yet the moment she touches Will, the connection between them is elemental, undeniable-and she's the only one who can tame his bouts of madness. But other assassins are coming for Holly. Will must transform from killer to protector and find the man who wants Holly dead . . . or his only chance for redemption will be lost.

Ever since she burst on to the scene with the inventive and powerfully romantic Firelight back in 2012, Kristen Callihan has been turning out unique and gripping tales that put the steam in steampunk. Even beyond her dense plots and compelling love stories, she’s a master at world-building. Each of her novels is a magnificent edifice in which Victorian London, with its bustle and damp and grime and energy, forms the foundation; the supernatural, including werewolves, ghosts, and an array of other creatures, forms the walls, and the whole is topped off with clever mechanical innovation. Dirigibles float serenely across Callihan’s London sky, while on the ground ghosts with hearts that tick like clocks move with ease among the unaware populace, mingling with werewolves, fae, angels, and vampires.

[Ever-inventive!...]

Fri
Aug 22 2014 12:00pm
Excerpt

Not Quite a Wife: Exclusive Excerpt

Not Quite a Wife by Mary Jo Putney

Marry in haste, repent at leisure.

James, Lord Kirkland, owns a shipping fleet, half a London gaming house, and is a ruthlessly effective spymaster. He is seldom self-indulgent…except when it comes to the gentle, indomitable beauty who was once his wife.

Laurel Herbert gave James her heart as an innocent young girl—until she saw him perform an act of shocking violence before her very eyes. That night she left her husband, and he let her go without a word of protest.

Now, ten years later, a chance encounter turns passionate, with consequences that cannot be ignored. But as they try to rebuild what was broken, they must face common enemies and a very uncommon love….

Get a sneak peek of Mary Jo Putney's Not Quite a Wife (available August 26, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Laurel.  Kirkland gradually rose from darkness to awareness, drifting in a sea of well-being.  He’d dreamed of his wife, which wasn’t unusual, but most of the time, she vanished when he took her in his arms, leaving him aching with loneliness and frustration.  This time he’d had one of his rare dreams of satisfaction, and with a degree of realism that was searing.

But consciousness would not be denied.  He had a large inventory of aches and pains, including a throbbing head.  What had happened?  And where was he? 

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt of Not Quite a Wife...]

Fri
Aug 22 2014 11:00am

A Sigh of Lovers: Top 5 Nora Roberts Couples

Carnal Innocence by Nora RobertsSince I have read nearly every novel Nora Roberts has written, I had an enormous sigh of lovers to consider in selecting a top five. I could have chosen a top twenty more easily. But after due consideration, these five are the couples that I love most together. They are not necessarily the heroes I consider most swoon-worthy or the heroines I most admire or the books at the top of my keeper list but rather those whose HEAs I believe in most wholeheartedly.

5. Caroline Waverly and Tucker Longstreet, Carnal Innocence (1991)
Burned out concert violinist Caroline, a Yankee who retreats to the small-town South after a breakdown, and wealthy, laidback Southern charmer Tucker, who is practically legendary for his allergy to commitment, are no one’s idea of a perfect match. Tucker, a connoisseur of beautiful women, finds Caro captivating from the beginning, but she is unimpressed with him until she becomes aware of the substance beneath the good-old-boy façade. Caroline is hungry for connection and for love based on who she is rather than on her talent, and Tucker has a great capacity for love as evidenced by his devotion to his messed up family and his anonymous acts of charity. Both characters are more than the sum of their parts, and at heart, they are more alike than different.

[Did your favorites make the list?...]

Fri
Aug 22 2014 9:30am

First Look: Mary Jo Putney’s Not Quite a Wife (August 26, 2014)

Not Quite a Wife by Mary Jo PutneyMary Jo Putney
Not Quite a Wife
Zebra / August 26, 2014 / $7.99 print, $7.59 digital

James, Lord Kirkland, owns a shipping fleet, half a London gaming house, and is a ruthlessly effective spymaster. He is seldom self-indulgent...except when it comes to the gentle, indomitable beauty who was once his wife. Laurel Herbert gave James her heart as an innocent young girl - until she saw him perform an act of shocking violence before her very eyes. That night she left her husband, and he let her go without a word of protest. Now, ten years later, a chance encounter turns passionate, with consequences that cannot be ignored. But as they try to rebuild what was broken, they must face common enemies and a very uncommon love.

Very often in romance, the hero will kill someone during the novel, especially if he is in the Spy Biz. The deed is usually done without much thought or care for the consequences—the villain needed killing, so he was killed. But what happens when the novel's heroine is a very moral person with a deep sense of what is right and wrong? What if she can't accept that the man she loves is an instrument of death? This is the theme Mary Jo Putney explores in her latest novel, Not Quite a Wife.

[Troubled times ahead!...]

Fri
Aug 22 2014 8:15am

What is Your #FridayReads?

Fiance by Friday by Catherine Bybee

Each week on our Facebook page, we ask the H&H community what they're reading. Today we'd like to extend the conversation over here, and ask you guys what you're reading.

So what book is making your Friday even better? 

Thu
Aug 21 2014 4:30pm

First Look: Christine Warren’s Stone Cold Lover (August 26, 2014)

Stone Cold Lover by Christine Warren

Christine Warren
Stone Cold Lover (Gargoyle #2)
St. Martin's Press / August 26, 2014 / $7.99 print / digital

Art restorer Felicity “Fil” Shaltis can read the magic in auras, but her fascination with a valuable statue her friend Ella Harrow asks her to locate is purely artistic. At least until the fierce stone gargoyle comes to life as a powerful, and powerfully hot, immortal warrior, who promptly saves her life from a cultist set on destroying them both. Suddenly “chiseled good looks” takes on a whole new meaning…

Spar expected nothing less than one of the seven demons of the Dark to wake him—and instead finds himself the unlikely savior of a spirited human female who now bears the mark of the demon. As one of seven Guardians created to vanquish the Darkness, Spar has no time for love—but he can’t deny that his destiny is clearly entwined with Fil’s. To battle the looming threat to humanity, first Spar must save the woman who summoned him...

Christine Warren’s second Gargoyles story, Stone Cold Lover, takes up just days after we left Ella Harrow and Kees. They located another possible Guardian frozen in his stone sleep near Ella’s college friend Felicity Shaltis in Montreal. With the Guild members missing and many of the Warden’s dead, Ella and Kees are hoping that Felicity’s ability to see auras creates enough magic to wake other Guardian, or the nocturnis and the Darkness may just win against the Light. But maybe they should have mentioned to Fil that there was more to it than just locating a statute?

[Like that the statue is a gargoyle...?]

Thu
Aug 21 2014 3:00pm

You’ve Got Text: Love in the Digital Age

Today we're pleased to have author Shelley K. Wall join us to talk about the next iteration of romance communication, this time in the digital age! Shelley's latest release, Text Me, has a hero who's having a bad time—he got fired, he got dumped, and bout the only thing that's going right are the texts he's exchanging with someone he thinks he knows—but doesn't! Text Me is a modern screwball comedy, integrating today's social media with some delightful miscommunication. Shelley is here to talk about love in the digital age. Thanks, Shelley!

Pop quiz time! How many Facebook posts did you make today? How about Twitter? Did you Facetime? What about plain ol’ texting a friend?

Now for the bonus question: How many times did you speak out loud to an actual human?

Let’s face it: this is an age of instant interaction. For most of us, the majority of conversations we have on a daily basis are now done through some sort of technical gadget. We text, tweet, Snapchat, Instagram, etc. and expect immediate communication.

[For love of technology...]

Thu
Aug 21 2014 1:30pm

First Look: Liz Carlyle’s The Earl’s Mistress (August 26, 2014)

The Earl's Mistress by Liz Carlyle

Liz Carlyle
The Earl's Mistress
Avon / August 26, 2014 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

Women rarely refuse the wicked Earl of Hepplewood, whose daring exploits are only whispered about. But when his new governess answers his proposition with a slap, then stalks out, references in hand, Hepplewood finds more than his face is burning.

Isabella Aldridge has brains, bravado, and beauty— but the latter is no use to a servant. Her circumstances are desperate, and with Hepplewood's words ringing in her ears, Isabella realizes she must barter her most marketable asset . . . her body.

But when fate sends Isabella back into Hepplewood's arms, the earl must make an impossible choice—draw Isabella down into his sensual darkness, or behave with honor for the first time in his life.

Liz Carlyle's The Earl's Mistress is a bit of a departure for her. Both Hepplewood and Isabella are damaged people who have control issues. Their efforts to work them out through their sexual relationship is a riveting—and at times, disturbing—read.

[A battle for control?...]

Thu
Aug 21 2014 12:00pm
Excerpt

A Scandal to Remember: Exclusive Excerpt

Elizabeth Essex

A Scandal to Remember by Elizabeth Essex

The rules of courtship are swept out to sea when a shipwreck offers a Reckless Bride a true taste of paradise…

CAN A WHIRLWIND ROMANCE

In Elizabeth Essex's A Scandal to Remember, for too long, Miss Jane Burke’s father has taken advantage of her painstaking research. Heading to the South Seas to make her own name as a scientist despite the crew’s insistence that a woman aboard is bad luck, she isn’t prepared to be championed by a handsome ship’s officer who rouses longings inside her as wild as any storm…

LEAD TO A PROPER PROPOSAL?

For Lieutenant Charles Dance, a post on His Majesty’s survey ship Tenacious is just one more dutiful rung on the ladder of his career. Even a headstrong bluestocking on board is less troubling than the ship’s drunken captain—and the ferocious gales that drive the ship off course. Stranded on a remote island, passion blazes between them as hot as the sun, but it’s Jane’s love that Charles wants forever…

Get a sneak peek of Elizabeth Essex's A Scandal to Remember (available August 26, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of Chapter 1 & 2.

Chapter 1
England
H.M.S. Tenacious
Portsmouth Harbor
November 1815

Lieutenant Charles Dance was old enough and smart enough to know that some ideas were bad, right from the start. Some choices were no choice at all, especially when fueled by desperation. And some things were enough to drive a man to drink.

Except that his captain was already drunk, reeling about his cabin reeking of gin at ten o’clock in the morning. And they hadn’t even left Portsmouth dock.

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt of A Scandal to Remember...]

Thu
Aug 21 2014 11:00am

H&H Bloggers Recommend: Best Reads of August 2014

My Beautiful Enemy by Sherry ThomasEach month, we ask our bloggers to share the best thing they’ve read (or things, plural, if our bloggers declare a tie ’cause they just can’t choose). It doesn’t have to be a new book, as evidenced below; just something that made the month sparkle a bit more.

Without further ado, here’s the installment for August 2014 (and if you’ve missed any, be sure to check out past recs via the Related Posts section at the bottom of the post):

Myretta Robens

My best of August book is Sherry Thomas's My Beautiful Enemy.
 
The hero and heroine have Sherry Thomas's trademark depth and vividness, and she does an extraordinary job of developing a relationship across time, cultures, and geography. One of her best, in my opinion.

Willa aka Willaful

My “best of” for August, We Are All Completely Besides Ourselves by Karen Joy Fowler, is absolutely not a romance. It is, however, a love story
about family. An intriguing high-concept plot and clever narrative
structure reveal deeply moving ideas about how love for family shapes our
identity, and about our ability to close our minds to unpleasant truths.

In romance, I loved the wit and tenderness of The Suffragette Scandal by
Courtney Milan, a lovely end to a memorable series.

[Will you be adding these to you TBR pile?]

Thu
Aug 21 2014 9:30am

First Look: Robyn Carr’s The Homecoming (August 26, 2014)

The Homecoming by Robyn CarrRobyn Carr The Homecoming (Thunder Point #6)
Harlequin MIRA / August 26, 2014 / $7.99 print & digital

At the age of nineteen, Seth Sileski had everything. A superb athlete and scholar, handsome and popular, he was the pride of Thunder Point. Destined for greatness, he lost it all in a terrible accident that put an end to his professional football career when it had barely begun. The people in his hometown have never forgotten what might have been.

Seth has come to terms with the turns his life has taken. But now he's been presented with an opportunity to return home and show his father—and the people of Thunder Point—he's become a better, humbler version of his former self.

Winning over his father isn't the only challenge. Seth must also find a way to convince his childhood neighbor and best friend, Iris McKinley, to forgive him for breaking her heart. With his homecoming, will Seth be able to convince the town, his family and especially Iris that he's finally ready to be the man who will make them all proud?

I disagree with so many platitudes, but the one I can wholeheartedly embrace is “when life gives you lemons, made lemonade. Part of Robyn Carr’s appeal is she knows how to cleverly incorporate truism like this within her story. And of course the other is that she creates such pleasing, admirable characters. In book six of the Thunder Point series, The Homecoming, both Seth and Iris have learned to make lemonade as you’ll find out over the course of the book. But their appealing nature is clear from the first moment you meet them.

[We can't wait to get introduced!...]

Thu
Aug 21 2014 8:03am

Throwback Thursday: Who Was Your First Book Boyfriend?

Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy

We've asked who your most recent book boyfriend was, and now we want to know who was your first—you know, the first hero you read about who made you wish he were real and could come find you and sweep you off your feet.

Who was your first book boyfriend?

Wed
Aug 20 2014 4:30pm

First Look: Pam Jenoff’s The Winter Guest (August 26, 2014)

The Winter Guest by Pam JenoffPam Jenoff
The Winter Guest
Harlequin MIRA / August 26, 2014 / $14.95 print & digital

Life is a constant struggle for the eighteen-year-old Nowak twins as they raise their three younger siblings in rural Poland under the shadow of the Nazi occupation. The constant threat of arrest has made everyone in their village a spy, and turned neighbor against neighbor. Though rugged, independent Helena and pretty, gentle Ruth couldn't be more different, they are staunch allies in protecting their family from the threats the war brings closer to their doorstep with each passing day.

Then Helena discovers an American paratrooper stranded outside their small mountain village, wounded, but alive. Risking the safety of herself and her family, she hides Sam—a Jew—but Helena's concern for the American grows into something much deeper. Defying the perils that render a future together all but impossible, Sam and Helena make plans for the family to flee. But Helena is forced to contend with the jealousy her choices have sparked in Ruth, culminating in a singular act of betrayal that endangers them all—and setting in motion a chain of events that will reverberate across continents and decades.

Since her debut novel, 2007’s The Kommandant’s Girl, Pam Jenoff has wowed audiences with her intense and heartfelt World War II romantic fiction. In this latest release, Jenoff combines intrigue, mystery, and sibling rivalry to deliver a thrilling perspective on how the past affects the present.

[I'm intrigued already...]

Wed
Aug 20 2014 3:59pm

“How Was the Sex?”: The Mindy Project Season 2 Deleted Scenes Released!

Today's our lucky day, fellow Mindy/Danny 'shippers! The Mindy Project Season 2 DVD set was released yesterday, and while this normally wouldn't be a news item, the DVDs contain some pretty delicious treats for fans of the Dandy romance, including juicy deleted scenes such as the amaaaazing one above. In it, Mindy tells Danny about the sexy dream she had about them the night before and then winds him up about how the sex was only just “fine” (!!!).

Honestly, it's actually probably a good thing that didn't air since 1) we'd probably all be ded from the feels and 2) it wouldn't have been possible to put off a Mindy/Danny kiss for much longer after this display:

(Gifs by anniedison via Tumblr—def check out the whole hilarious set!)  

What do you think? Let's squee together! (And feel free to share more tidbits—this girl has not yet received her DVDs in the mail, tragically.)

P.S. Expect a recap of the Season 3 premiere after it airs on September 9. To refresh your memory, watch FOX's Season 2 recap here.

Wed
Aug 20 2014 3:00pm

Outlander IS a Bodice Ripper

Outlander by Diana GabaldonBodice ripper*: A controversial term for the earliest of romance novels with a certain formula. Sure, they call to mind those notorious covers of the '70s and '80s where the hero grips a heroine who's effectively spilling out of her top as they both appear to be in the throes of never-ending orgasm. And for those well-versed in the genre, there are other qualities bodice rippers are known for, most importantly the content. Overall, the bodice rippers of old do share commonalities. Yet breaking some aspects of the ancient mold doesn't automatically prevent inclusion. And in light of this, Diana Gabaldon's Outlander, beloved as it is to its legions of fans and for all its glory in busting through genres to appeal to millions, is every bit the bodice ripper.

For many, the term bodice ripper is immediately negative. They're realistic, but not pretty. Never mind the fact that I gained more knowledge about very specific events in history and the human element in historical nuances from bodice rippers than I did from their textbook counterparts, and to this day Stormfire—the mother of all bodice rippers—remains one of my very favorite novels. The truth is, the characteristics that define a bodice ripper spill from the pages of Outlander, and in many ways Outlander is as polarizing as that infamous name.

[Tell us more...]

Wed
Aug 20 2014 1:00pm

Now Win This!: Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Son of No One Collector’s Edition!

Click here to enter for a chance to win a collector's edition hardcover copy of Sherrilyn Kenyon's Son of No One.*

Son of No One by Sherrilyn Kenyon

Read an exclusive excerpt from Son of No One.

In Son of No One, next in the blockbuster The Dark-Hunters series by Sherrilyn Kenyon, it’s not easy being life’s own personal joke, but Josette Landry has made an unstable peace with the beast. Completely down on her luck, Josette takes a job with a local paranormal group as a photographer and camerawoman. Yeah, they’re even crazier than she is. The only paranormal thing she believes in is the miracle that keeps her rusted out hoopty running. But when something truly evil is released into the world, they are forced to call in reinforcement.

From the moment Josette meets Cadegan, she knows something about him isn’t quite right. Mysterious and armed with lethal sarcasm, he seems a lot older than his age.

Centuries ago, Cadegan was viciously betrayed into an immortal prison by the only person he’d ever trusted. Forced against his will to do good, he hates everything in life. All he wants is a way out. But for the damned there is only eternal suffering. And yet there is something about Josette that intrigues him. Something he can’t seem to fight and the last time he felt this way about a woman, it cost him everything.

He knows he has to stay away from her, but the unleashed demon is hellbent on consuming her soul. If one more innocent is taken, he will be sent back to an unimaginable prison that makes his current hell look like paradise. But how can he keep her safe when his being with her is the greatest threat of all?

Click here to enter for a chance to win a collector's edition hardcover copy of Sherrilyn Kenyon's Son of No One.*

*NO PURCHASE NECESSARY TO ENTER OR WIN. A purchase does not improve your chances of winning.  Sweepstakes open to legal residents of 50 United States, D.C., and Canada (excluding Quebec), who are 18 as of the date of entry.  To enter, complete entry at http://www.heroesandheartbreakers.com/sonofnoonecollectorssweeps beginning at 1:00 pm Eastern Time (ET) on August 20, 2014. Sweepstakes ends at 12:59 pm ET on September 3, 2014. Void outside the United States and Canada and where prohibited by law.  Please see full details and official rules here. Sponsor: Heroes and Heartbreakers, 175 Fifth Ave., New York, NY 10010.

Wed
Aug 20 2014 11:00am

September 2014 Romance Novel New Releases Shopping List

Find your future faves with this delightfully convenient shopping list of romance novels coming out in September. We’ve divided them up by subgenre to make it easier for those who’ve got a very specific obsession and there are some great books to look forward to. Our shopping list is the biggest yet, so don’t forget to take this printable version with you when it’s time to shop!

Heroes and Heartbreakers September 2014 Shopping List!
 
Paranormal/Urban Fantasy/SfR
Son of No One by Sherrilyn Kenyon, Burning Desire by Donna Grant, Night's Honor by Thea Harrison, Ghost Layer by Robin D. Owens, Forged by Desire by Bec McMaster, Chained by Night by Larissa Ione, Once Haunted Twice Shy by HP Mallory, Beauty's Beast by Amanda Ashley

[Check out the complete list!...]

Wed
Aug 20 2014 12:00pm
Reprint

H&H Reads: First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones (Part 5 of 6)

First Grave on the Right by Darynda JonesToday, we're excited to bring back our H&H Reads program, with the book that introduced us to everyone's favorite grim reaper, Charley Davidson—First Grave on the Right.

Every Wednesday and Sunday from now until August 20, we'll be posting First Grave on the Right in five easy-to-read (if not so easy to wait for!) parts. Right before each new part goes up, we'll be taking down the previous one, so make sure you don't miss a single piece of the book. Whether you're a long-time fan of Darynda Jones, or brand new to the Charley Davidson series, we hope you'll read along and then discuss each section of the book with us!

Want to be alerted when future parts of the book are live on the site? Log in or register here to be added to the H&H Reads Alert List! Want more Darynda Jones? Log in or register here to stay up to date on all the news!

Don't think you can wait? Catch up on the whole story now. (See the links at the bottom of this post for more info on where you can get your copy of First Grave on the Right.) Then, come back to share your thoughts!

First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones

First Grave on the Right is the smashing, award-winning debut novel that introduces Charley Davidson: part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper.

Charley sees dead people. That's right, she sees dead people. And it's her job to convince them to “go into the light.” But when these very dead people have died under less than ideal circumstances (i.e., murder), sometimes they want Charley to bring the bad guys to justice. Complicating matters are the intensely hot dreams she's been having about an Entity who has been following her all her life...and it turns out he might not be dead after all. In fact, he might be something else entirely.

This is a thrilling debut novel from Darynda Jones, an exciting newcomer to the world of paranormal romantic suspense.

First Grave on the Right is the winner of the 2012 Rita Award for Best First Book.

Chapter 14

Well, this is awkward.
— T-SHIRT

Apparently, this really was Kill Charley Davidson Week. Or at least Horribly Maim Her. I considered the slick gun pointed at me from across the threshold confirmation. It would probably never get government recognition, though, destined to be underappreciated like Halloween or Thesaurus Day.

When I opened the door, Zeke Herschel, Rosie’s abusive husband, stood across from me with vengeance in his eyes. I glanced at the nickel-plated pistol clenched in his hand and felt my heartbeat falter, hesitate, then stumble awkwardly forward, tripping on the next beat, then the next, faster and faster until each one tumbled into the other like the drumroll of dominoes crashing together. Funny how time stands still when death is imminent. While I watched Herschel’s muscles contract through my periphery, his finger squeeze the trigger, I focused on his face. A cocky arrogance glittered in his colorless eyes.

[Log in or register to read Chapters 14-17 from First Grave on the Right...]