<i>At His Service</i>: Exclusive Excerpt At His Service: Exclusive Excerpt Suzanne Rock She undid the top few buttons of her blouse, revealing the upper curve of her breasts. <i>Jaguar Pride</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Jaguar Pride: Exclusive Excerpt Terry Spear Seeing her super-manly partner with cubs stirs up some unexpected desires... <i>Rough Justice</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Rough Justice: Exclusive Excerpt Sarah Castille "He pulled her into his body, imprisoning her in the warm circle of his arms..." <i>Playing with Fire</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Playing with Fire: Exclusive Excerpt Kat Black "He pushed her back up against the wall and kissed her hard..."
From The Blog
January 23, 2015
Friday Beefcake: It's Sweater Weather
Team H & H
January 23, 2015
Karen Marie Moning Dishes on Fever Series and More!
Karen Marie Moning
January 22, 2015
Meredith Duran and the Romance of Uncertain Loyalties
Miss Bates
January 21, 2015
Love, Loss, Sisterhood, and Motherhood in Kristin Hannah’s Novels
Maggie Boyd
January 19, 2015
Plans Go Awry in Vanessa Kelly’s How to Plan A Wedding for a Royal Spy
Jackie Lester
Mon
Jan 26 2015 3:00pm

First Look: Tessa Bailey’s Risking It All (January 27, 2015)

Risking it All by Tessa BaileyTessa Bailey
Risking It All (Crossing the Line #1)
Entangled / January 27, 2015 / $14.99 print, $5.99 digital

NYPD detective Seraphia Newsom will avenge her brother’s death at any cost. Even if it means insinuating herself into a rough, Brooklyn street gang and going so far undercover, she’s not sure she’ll be able to get out. Every minute she spends in their midst means the clock ticking down on her life, especially when she overhears something that could get her killed.

Bowen Driscol is the heir to a crime enterprise. He never asked for the job, but with his father behind bars, he has no choice but to step in and keep the operation running. But when the NYPD blackmails him with a piece of damning information in exchange for aiding an undercover cop, he finds himself on the other side of the law for the first time in his life.

Bowen knows the danger Sera is in, and keeping her safe trumps saving his own ass. The problem? She can’t know he’s on her side. And there's the matter of the seriously inconvenient heat sparking between them that's incinerating his resistance. But Sera only sees Bowen's past, and men like him are the reason her brother is dead. If they're to get out alive, he'll have to risk exposing the man beneath, and hope to hell he doesn't blow the whole operation in the process.

Tessa Bailey has outdone herself. Risking It All brings together the strongest elements from her earlier works—alpha hotness, bad boys, cops, strong heroines, dirty talking and mind-blowing sex scenes—and merges them in a refreshing, consuming take on tropes we love.

[Risky business!]

Mon
Jan 26 2015 2:00pm

Trust Issues: Eve and Roarke in J.D. Robb’s Vengeance in Death

This week, H&H celebrates the forthcoming release of the fortieth (!!!) book in J.D. Robb's In Death series, Obsession in Death. As part of the celebration, we're taking an in-depth look at the sixth book in the series, Vengeance in Death (with a bonus excerpt of Chapter 1 from the book at the end of this post). To join the discussion on Twitter, use the hashtag #obsessedwithindeath. And be sure to check out posts from fellow romance blogs Romance at Random and, next week, Smexy Books for more re-read fun.

Vengeance in Death, the sixth of J.D. Robb's wonderful In Death Series, is a pivotal novel for relationships in the series. In book one, Naked in Death, Eve Dallas, homicide lieutenant, fell in love with a man with a criminal past. In book three, Immortal in Death, she is preparing to marry him. Vengeance in Death is a turning point in the Eve / Roarke relationship, the book in which Eve determines how much she trusts her new husband.

Trust does not come easily for Eve, as anyone who has read the series will be aware. As a child, she was abused and molested and, eventually, found in an alley in Dallas, covered in blood with no memory of her past. She was raised in state institutions and driven to law enforcement as a stable, safe harbor. Over the course of the first five books, Eve begins to regain some of her memories and what she recovers does not encourage trust.

[Uh oh... that doesn't bode well...]

Mon
Jan 26 2015 1:00pm

Lost Girl 5x08 Recap and SPOILER Thread: Succubus in a Box

Bo and Dyson in Lost Girl 5x08We'll be recapping Lost Girl as it airs on Showcase in Canada and we'll be repromoting them as it airs in the United States on the SyFy channel. Enjoy and discuss!

Note: This post contains spoilers of all aired episodes of Lost Girl, including last night's Season 5, Episode 8, “End of Faes.”

Tamsin is moving out of Hilton Hovel under protest from Bo who claims she and the team still need Tamsin. Tamsin rightfully doesn’t believe Bo’s platitudes anymore and claims she doesn’t need Bo, which, let’s be honest, she never did. Tamsin seems over last week’s rejection and claims that Bo’s heart will always be with Doctor Lauren and they’ll always be a couple even when they’re not. You know what? I can’t even bother unpacking all the bullshit that’s in that statement anymore. Bo wonders where Tamsin is going to go. “Wherever the universe takes me. Motel 6. And then wherever the universe takes me.” Heh.

[Always bringing the laughs even when your heart is breaking...]

Mon
Jan 26 2015 12:05pm
Excerpt

At His Service: Exclusive Excerpt

Suzanne Rock

At His Service by Suzanne Rock

Leo Perconti's  life is spinning out of control. As head of his family’s hotel conglomerate, it’s his job to save his family from bankruptcy. At the center of his turmoil is Karin Norell, a quiet, alluring housekeeping manager who compliments his dominating personality and lets him feel in control once more.

As Karin explores her passion her feelings for Leo deepen. Unfortunately, Karin and Leo come from  different worlds, and when the two worlds collide, the cost can be devastating. As the service staff at The Palazzo rise up against the Perconti family, both Leo and Karin are faced with losing what each of them holds most dear. Together they must learn that true power comes from vulnerability and trust that can only happen when you let your insecurities go.

Get a sneak peek at Suzanne Rock's At His Service, Part 1 (available February 3, 2015) with an exclusive excerpt of Chapter 1.

Chapter 1

Karin Norell shoved the cleaning cart inside the elevator and pushed the button in rapid succession to close the door. Once the doors closed and she slid her card for the penthouse suite, she slumped against the mirrored wall and let out a long breath.

Only twelve more weeks to go. Karin had to last just a few short months before she obtained the work credit needed for her hospitality degree. The second she finished her required internship, she was going to quit this lousy job and never think about the Palazzo again.

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt of At His Service...]

Mon
Jan 26 2015 11:22am

“Every Day, Every Man Has a Choice": Watch Outlander 1.5’s Opening Scene

Starz has released the first few moments of the first episode from the second half of Outlander Season 1, which we've dubbed Season 1.5.

By telling part of the story through Jamie's eyes, the series is already diverging from Diana Gabaldon's book, which is told exclusively from Claire's point of view. What do you think of the decision to open the episode with a Jamie voiceover?

Outlander returns April 4 with “The Reckoning.” Find all of our coverage of the show and book series in the Outlander Collection.

Mon
Jan 26 2015 10:45am

First Look: Kelly Jamieson’s Playing Dirty (January 27, 2015)

Kelly Jamieson
Playing Dirty (Windy City Kink, Book 3)
Samhain Publishing / January 27, 2015 / $4.99 digital

What seems like surrender may not be surrender at all...

Paige Nelson has an amazing new life in a new city with her own business and new friends, her abusive ex-husband firmly in her past. Plans to expand her business are running into a few roadblocks, but she doesn't need a man to help her. She can do this on her own.

From the minute he lays eyes on Paige, prominent developer Raff Lauden wants her. Intensely. Urgently. Though petite and delicate usually isn't his type, he finds himself asking her out. Even more surprising? She says no.

Paige has a history of being attracted to dominant, controlling man. The kind she swore never to get involved with again. But maybe she's trying to resist the one man who can give her everything she's ever really wanted...

This is probably my favorite book I've read so far this year, and my favorite thing about Playing Dirty by Kelly Jamieson is how human the characters are. Paige and Raff are just so well developed. They're absolutely dynamic. In fact, (perhaps excluding Paige's ex) I don't think there's a single static character in the book. I also knew going in that this book takes place in the “middle” of a series, but I had no problem keeping up. This book definitely stands alone.

[We'll stand by it!]

Mon
Oct 13 2014 9:15am

Downton Abbey Series 5 (Season 5), Episode 4: Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 5 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 5 on January 4, 2015. We'll be repromoting Naz's recaps then, so feel free to wait to read them until that time to remain unspoiled.

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Downton Abbey, including last night's Series 5, Episode 4. Enjoy!

This week, the episode starts with Thomas returning from his trip to (ostensibly) visit his sick father. Guess what? His father is completely recovered! Shocker.

Upstairs, the family’s all gathered for lunch and we find that Rose’s father is due for a visit and is planning to stay at the Abbey. Yay! Shrimpy’s back! I wonder how he’s doing with his wife these days, and whether or not O’Brien will return, too. That would certainly be interesting. Any way, we’re definitely not going to see that during this episode, because Shrimpy’s traveling alone. Something’s up, though, because when Robert asks where Shrimpy’s next assignment is going to be, Mary shakes her head implying that the subject is not up for discussion.

[Let it lie for a while...]

Mon
Jan 26 2015 8:18am

What Pulls You In Every Time?

Idris Elba in Details MagazineLast week in the H&H Debriefing, we talked about Big Misunderstandings, which can put some people off a book (where you start yelling, “Just talk to each other, already!”).

Today we want to find out the top reason you think, “Oh, yeah, I HAVE to read that one!” It could be a trope, a type of character, a set-up, a genre, there are animals in the story, or anything else. 

What pulls you in every time? 

Sun
Jan 25 2015 2:00pm

First Look: Laura Lee Guhrke’s Catch a Falling Heiress (January 27, 2015)

Catch a Falling Heiress  by Laura Lee GuhrkeLaura Lee Guhrke
Catch a Falling Heiress
Avon / January 27, 2015 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

Linnet Holland wants nothing to do with fortune hunters. No, she's determined to marry a man who loves her. But just as she's about to accept the perfect marriage proposal from the man she wants, the rakish Earl of Featherstone interrupts and ruins everything, including her reputation, with his smoldering kiss . . .

Jack Featherstone knows all about Linnet's “intended,” and he's determined she won't fall prey to that villain as other women have in the past. But when his attempt to save Linnet ruins her instead, he knows he has to make things right. So he sets out to win this golden beauty . . . and prove to her that being ruined by him was the best thing that could have happened to her.

Linnet Holland, the latest heroine in Laura Lee Guhrke's An American Heiress in London series, is determined to escape the fate that has befallen so many others: trading her American money for an English title. She successfully navigated a London season without becoming engaged and is happily back home in Newport, about to agree to marry an old acquaintance—more for familiarity's sake than anything else—when Jack, Earl of Featherstone steps in. 

[Where angels fear to tread?]

Sun
Jan 25 2015 10:00am

Shipping Sunday: Jane the Virgin’s Jane and Rafael

Jane the Virgin caught our eye from Episode 1—after all, when the premise of the show is that a girl who has been saving herself for marriage but suddenly finds herself accidentally artificially enseminated, we knew that hijinx (and love) would ensue! However, the ship we boarded isn't the original relationship that Jane was in at the beginning of the show; rather, we've fallen for Jane and her former-almost-lover-turned-baby-daddy-and-oh-yeah-boss, Rafael.

Now that Jane the Virgin's Gina Rodriguez has won a Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy Series (!!!!), the show has a few people sitting up and taking notice. Are you one of them? Have you tried this show?

What's been your favorite Jane and Rafael moment? Share gifs and pictures in the comments!

[Do you ship this couple?...]

Sat
Jan 24 2015 2:00pm

First Look: Kimberly Kincaid’s Fire Me Up (January 27, 2015)

FIre Me Up by Kimberly KincaidKimberly Kincaid
Fire Me Up (Pine Mountain #4)
Kensington / January 27, 2015 / $7.99 print, $7.59 digital

Teagan O’Malley can handle a crisis. She’s a paramedic, it’s her job. But she never expected to land in the kitchen of her father’s pub, with no notice, no cash, and no room for error. The kitchen is not her favorite place. Lucky for her, she just scraped a bad-boy chef off the pavement after a motorcycle accident—and something about him says he can turn up the heat in more ways than one.

Adrian Holt has had a rough few years, and he’s not eager to get tangled up in anything more complicated than a good risotto. But with a broken arm and a head full of bad memories, he needs a challenge to keep him sane. Teagan’s dare-me attitude and smoldering mess of a bar are just what the doctor ordered. And the two of them together might cook up some even better medicine…

There is nothing more enticing then a heroine and hero that have it completely together in one area of their life, but not another. Having less than perfect characters equates to authentic characters, and in Katherine Kincaid’s new release, Fire Me Up, the fourth book in her Pine Mountain series, you’ll be intrigued by the characters’ authenticity and vulnerability.

[Fire us up!]

Sat
Jan 24 2015 10:00am
Excerpt

Jaguar Pride: Exclusive Excerpt

Terry Spear

Jaguar Pride by Terry Spear

An impossible mission…

JAG Special Forces agents Huntley Anderson and Melissa Overton are hot on the trail of poachers when they’re suddenly saddled with two jaguar shifter cubs. They have to locate the parents, pronto—but who’s going to babysit in the meantime?

A lifetime of possibilities…

Huntley is a rough, tough jaguar shifter and an all-business agent, but he’s not going to let two abandoned youngsters come to any harm on his watch. Seeing her super-manly partner try to get the playful cubs under control stirs up some unexpected desires in Melissa, and she begins to feel like Huntley’s not the only one who’s in over his head…

Get a sneak peek at Terry Spear's Jaguar Pride (available February 3, 2015) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Men’s voices deeper in the rainforest caught Melissa’s attention. She couldn’t make out what they were actually saying. Huntley was beside her in an instant. Were the men camping in the rainforest? She’d heard at least three different voices. She could smell whiffs of smoke from their campfire. She and Huntley headed in that direction, drawing closer until they could hear the three men talking—about rugby, girlfriends, and sex. Australians. Most likely they were not who she and Huntley were looking for.

“Hey, mate, look at this. Hold the light closer.”

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt from Jaguar Pride...]

Fri
Jan 23 2015 4:30pm

Friday Beefcake: It’s Sweater Weather with Common, Felton, and More!

Joe ManganielloOkay, we know that beefcake is supposed to be filled with shirtless guys—and we deliver!—but with the cold weather making us all hunker down into our jackets and scarves, it does make us appreciate a man who looks good in his winter clothes! Today, we've gathered up the men who look defined and yummy even in bulky sweaters!

Do you think some men look even better in clothes? Share your favorite beefcake down in the comments!

[Let's get bundled up...]

Fri
Jan 23 2015 3:37pm

Romance News Roundup: Kit Rocha & Loretta Chase Sale, Vanity Fair on Fifty Shades of Grey

Welcome to H&H's brand-new daily news roundup! Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in the romance world right now.

In this week's H&H Debriefing, Megan and Jenn talk about a trope that can divide readers' on a book: The Big Misunderstanding! Do you love this set up, or if you never saw it again, it would be too soon? Let us know in the comments!

Vanity Fair has an interesting article about the making of Fifty Shades of Grey (h/t to Janet Webb), including this about the sex:

The sex, Taylor-James says, is tastefully handled: “It’s details, flesh and fingers and skin and eyes and looks.” She thinks that if you saw the actual sex “the mystery would be gone. You see a lot, but you don’t have to see anything graphic.”

Beyond Addiction by Kit Rocha—The books in Kit Rocha's Beyond series are discounted or free for a very limited time on all e-reading platforms. Find it at Amazon and Barnes and Noble!

—Loretta Chase's iconic romance novel, Lord of Scoundrels, turns twenty years old this month, and fans are celebrating with the #LOSLove hashtag, sharing what they love most about the book. It's on sale for $1.99 right now also at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iTunes!

Craveonline reports that a psychologist has analyzed over 300,000 books of erotica to find the word used most often. The word? It has four letters—but it's not the word you're probably thinking of. It's “cock.”

—The new Ellie Goulding music video for the song “Love Me Like You Do” features new clips from Fifty Shades of Grey—check out the scenes of Christian and Ana all set to the backdrop of Goulding's beautiful voice. Watch it here!

**Daily reminder that we don't know how long these deals will last, so get it while it's here!**

Fri
Jan 23 2015 2:00pm

First Look: Kristen Proby’s Falling for Jillian (January 27, 2015)

Falling for Jillian by Kristen ProbyKristen Proby
Falling for Jillian (Love Under the Big Sky #3)
Pocket / January 27, 2015 / $7.99 print, digital

Jillian thought she was a city girl through and through; the fast cars, high fashion, and glamour—she loves it all. But when her ex tells her he’s having a baby with his new wife (after Jillian struggled for years to get pregnant), she hightails it back to Montana to cry on the shoulder of her best friend, Cara.

But in truth, Jillian would rather be comforted by someone else…specifically Zack, Cara’s brother-in-law. Zack is a veteran of the Iraq War who came back to the family ranch to raise his preteen son after the boy’s mother took off. He’s struggling to re-establish a relationship with his son, and warding off the demons of PTSD, which still haunt him. The last thing he needs is bold, brassy Jillian…but why can’t he keep his hands off her?

Hot, buff, veteran, alpha male? Check. Gorgeous, sassy, independent, female? Check. Sizzling chemistry and a story packed with realistic growing pains in a developing relationship? Absolutely.

[We're falling already!]

Fri
Jan 23 2015 1:00pm

Fresh Starts: Male/Male Best Bets for January 2015

Black John (Johnnies #4) by Amy LaneAlthough many of us love dark and painful situations in our books, romance is ultimately an optimistic genre, one that promises healing, growth, and lasting happiness. For the new year, January offers some m/m reading that celebrates fresh starts and emotional rebirths.

Black John (Johnnies #4) by Amy Lane

John Carey is just out of rehab and dying inside when he gets word that Tory, the guy who loved him and broke him, has removed himself from the world in the most bitter way possible—and left John to clean up his mess.

Forced back to his hometown in Florida, John's craving a hit with every memory when he meets Tory's neighbor. Spacey and judgmental, Galen Henderson has been rotting in his crappy apartment since a motorcycle accident robbed him of his mobility, his looks, and his boyfriend all in one mistake. Galen's been hiding at the bottom of an oxy bottle, but when John shows up, he feels obligated to help wade through the wreckage of Tory's life.

The last thing John needs is another relationship with an addict, and the last thing Galen wants is a conscience. Both of them are shocked when they find that their battered souls can learn from and heal one another. It doesn't hurt that they're both getting a crash course on how growing up and getting past your worst mistakes sure beats the alternative—and that true love is something to fight to keep if your lover is fighting to love you back.

The eagerly awaited fourth book in Lane's dark and emotional “Johnnies” series follows the original Johnny, the owner of the gay porn business which has become a home for many troubled and gorgeous young men. Friendship, comfort, and healing are always big parts of these books and this looks like no exception.

[Let's see what other recommendations are up for grabs...]

Fri
Jan 23 2015 10:45am

First Look: Karen Ranney’s In Your Wildest Scottish Dreams (January 27, 2015)

In Your Wildest Scottish Dreams by Karen RanneyKaren Ranney
In Your Wildest Scottish Dreams
Avon / January 27, 2015 / $7.99 print, $6.64 digital

Seven years have passed since Glynis MacIain made the foolish mistake of declaring her love to Lennox Cameron, only to have him stare at her dumbfounded. Heartbroken, she accepted the proposal of a diplomat and moved to America, where she played the role of a dutiful wife among Washington's elite. Now a widow, Glynis is back in Scotland. Though Lennox can still unravel her with just one glance, Glynis is no longer the naïve girl Lennox knew and vows to resist him.

With the American Civil War raging, shipbuilder Lennox Cameron must complete a sleek new blockade runner for the Confederate Navy. He cannot afford any distractions, especially the one woman he's always loved. Glynis's cool demeanor tempts him to prove to her what a terrible mistake she made seven years ago.

As the war casts its long shadow across the ocean, will a secret from Glynis's past destroy any chance for a future between the two star-crossed lovers?

In Karen Ranney's In Your Wildest Scottish Dreams, Glynis MacIain grew up following her brother and Lennox Cameron around; she has loved Lennox for as long as she can remember. When she finally revealed her love with a kiss, Lennox is gobsmacked, stunned into silence. Mortally embarrassed, Glynis ran off and married an English diplomat and spent a miserable six years in the backwater town of Washington D.C. Now, happily widowed, she's returned to Scotland, but the troubles of the United States Civil War follow her. Because of the blockade, her family cannot get cotton for their textile mill and are in danger of being financially ruined, while Lennox, a prosperous shipbuilder, is working on an iron-hulled ship for the Confederacy.

[The tides have changed!]

Fri
Jan 23 2015 9:30am

Karen Marie Moning Dishes on Mac, Barrons, and More!

Burned by Karen Marie MoningKaren Marie Moning’s Burned was released this week, and KMM herself was kind enough to answer a few questions, from H&H and the H&H community, about Mac, Barrons, the Fever series, and spirit animals. Thanks, KMM!

**Looking for a place to discuss Burned? Check out this spoiler-free review of the book, and if you've already read, we have a spoiler-filled discussion thread going too.**

Tell us two truths and a lie about the Fever series.

Karen Marie Moning: Mac is pregnant with Barrons’s baby, Lor gets killed, Kat is pregnant and no one knows who the father is. *

*KMM kept us in suspense about which one is a lie...which one do you think it is? Give us your speculation in the comments!

Team H&H: Which three things would you take to a desert island?

KMM: Barrons, Ryodan and Lor.

What song best describes the couple from your latest book?

KMM: “Take Me To Church” by Hozier

[See who her favorite TV couple is + speculation about your favorite characters...]

Fri
Jan 23 2015 8:30am

“Candy for Dinner!": Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Trailer

A woman escapes from a doomsday cult and starts life over again in New York City.

What would you want to do first if you had lived in an underground bunker for the past 15 years? Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, streaming on Netflix in March, is the new project from 30 Rock's Tina Fey and Robert Carlock. From the basis of this trailer, we're in! 

Thu
Jan 22 2015 4:30pm

Meredith Duran and the Romance of Uncertain Loyalties

The Duke of Shadows by Meredith DuranWhere does loyalty lie? To the past, family, tradition, a profession, mission, aspiration, country? Romance fiction often pits loyalties against love. Will the romantic suspense hero mitigate danger and distance to be with the heroine? The HEA says so. Will the duke forego class distinction to marry the spinster-governess? The HEA proves it. The greater the loyalty stakes, the greater the sacrifice for love, the greater the promise for a world where “impediments to true love” see no admittance.

No one portrays the agony of divided loyalties and the grace of their reconciliation than Meredith Duran. Hero and heroine, caught in history’s tides, are bound by class, status, national, or religious identity, or economic circumstance. Tension permeates scenes between hero and heroine as they struggle to resolve newfound feelings, the fidelity they exact, and demands on their loyalty by the groups, or creeds to which they belong. The HEA promises: in the heroine and hero’s union, a new world, a better, more hopeful, more just, more joyful one.

Duran broke into the romance scene with her 2008 début, Duke of Shadows, the novel that introduced her love-tales of divided loyalties. The hero, Julian Sinclair, embodies two worlds in his Anglo-Indian origins. Julian exhibits the sang-froid of the man who adroitly steers two conflicting claims on his identity. Deliciously, the only one who shakes his self-possession is English heroine, Emmaline Parker. It is a great moment when she challenges him as they flee a Delhi attack, “And your loyalties … are they uncertain as well?”

[Ours aren't to Meredith Duran!]