<i>Perfect for You</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Perfect for You: Exclusive Excerpt Candis Terry "In that breath-stealing moment, Dec thought they might be in for..." <i>Damage Control</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Damage Control: Exclusive Excerpt Lisa Renee Jones "I wrap my arm around her waist and pull her naked body against me..." <i>Roar</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Roar: Exclusive Excerpt Cora Carmack "Just this once, Rora wanted something that had nothing to do with storms..." <i>His Cowboy Heart</i>: Exclusive Excerpt His Cowboy Heart: Exclusive Excerpt Jennifer Ryan "He’s determined to keep her by his side, now and always…"
From The Blog
February 18, 2017
ICYMI: Swoonies Voting, KGI Series, J.R. Ward, and more!
Team H & H
February 17, 2017
Friday Beefcake: 5 Drummers That Won't Skip a Beat!
Jamie Shaw
February 17, 2017
What Is the Difference Between a Rake and a Rogue?
Lauren Smith
February 16, 2017
2 Award-Winning Science Fiction Romances Worth a Second Look
February 16, 2017
Exclusive Covers for Byrne, Naigle, Douglas, and McGee
Team H & H
Feb 15 2017 4:30pm

High Adventure: Romance News and Deals from Linda Howard, Tillie Cole, and More

Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in romance.

{Did you know you can sign up to receive Afternoon Tea as an e-mail? Sign up to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Reap by Tillie Cole

Deal Alert: Tillie Cole's Reap is $1.99 on Amazon | Kobo | B&N | iBooks | etc.* The second book in Cole's Scarred Souls series will take you on the journey of 221—a Georgian mob prisoner given an obedience drug, and Talia, a woman desperate to break free from that life. Gotta love a mobster redemption story.  

Deal Alert: Linda Howard and Linda Jones' Frost Line is $1.99 on B&N | Amazon | etc* “Frost Line is perfect for readers who love fantasy and mystery,” writes blogger Scarlettleigh in her First Look. And the love story will sweep you right off of your feet!

Deal Alert: Emily Larkin's Unmasking Miss Appleby is FREE on Kobo | B&N | Amazon | iBooks | etc* This a-typical historical, set in the Georgian era, mixes the tropey fun of chick-in-pants, with a bit of mysticism thrown into the mix. Blogger Rachel Hyland declared it the best historical romance she read in 2016.

Deal Alert: Julie Ann Walker's Hell on Wheels is $1.99 on Kobo | B&N | Amazon | etc.* The first book in Walker's Black Knights Inc. series promises more alpha men than you can shake a stick at, which the author simply can't get enough of. 

[+Spend an afternoon with J.R. Ward...]

Feb 15 2017 3:00pm

First Look: M. O’Keefe’s Wait For It (February 28, 2017)

Wait For It by M. O'Keefe

M. O'Keefe
Wait For It (Everything I Left Unsaid #4)
Loveswept / February 28, 2017 / $4.99 digital

Wait For It is the fourth in her Everything I left Unsaid series by Molly O'Keefe. We finally get Tiffany’s story as she leaves her abusive husband, Phil, for good. Blake Edwards is the last person she expects to help her, especially since he’s Tiffany’s brother-in-law. The same man who paid Tiffany to never contact him or his family again. Sometimes pride is a heavy dose to swallow. But with Tiffany’s case, she’ll swallow her pride and then some in order to protect her children.

And that’s what I love about Tiffany. She’s got grit and heart and she’s determined to make life better for her children and herself. When she unknowingly crashes her friend Annie’s party in order to ask for help, the last person she wants to see is Blake. Despite knowing the man has no soul, she can’t help but be drawn to him.

Someone walked in front of the door, a big man in a beautiful dark-brown leather coat and a black T-shirt underneath it, with curls that picked up the light, gilding him like some angel in a renaissance painting, and then he was gone…

Blake Edwards.

My hate was a wrecking ball against that big beautiful red-brick wall that held me up. My unadulterated loathing for that man took my wall down in one swing.

[Read more...]

Feb 15 2017 1:30pm

KGI Series’ Final Mission—Maya Banks to Wrap Up Series at Book 15

Brighter Than the Sun by Maya Banks, the latest adventure in her thrilling KGI series, isn't even out yet (March 7 can't come quick enough), but we have a feeling even more people will be clamoring for the KGI series. Earlier this week it was announced that Banks would be wrapping up the KGI group with just three more books in the series—saying goodbye to her popular romantic suspense at book 15. 

The end of series will begin after the as-yet-untitled book 12 in the series, featuring the long-awaited Skylar as the heroine. Banks has been teasing us about Skylar's story for so long we can't even remember a time when we weren't clamoring for it. However, last year, Banks revealed that we'd have to wait even longer for her story as Joe Kelly (the hero of the forthcoming Brighter than the Sun) would be taking precedence. 

With these two getting their happily-ever-afters sorted out, what are you looking forward to in the final three books? 

UPDATED 8 p.m. ET: We're already getting more exciting information: Rusty's story will be told in the final book of the series, according to a comment by moderator Lillie on Banks' Facebook page! (Thank you to @KaylaBashe @ErinMickC on Twitter for alerting us to this new detail!)

What stories in the KGI group are you waiting for? Whose story has gone untold?

Tell us your theories in the comments!



Learn more about or pre-order a copy of Brighter than the Sun by Maya Banks, available March 7, 2017:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at B&N

Buy at iTunes

Buy at IndieBound

Buy at Kobo




Feb 15 2017 12:00pm

J.R. Ward’s Bourbon Kings Will Only Be a Trilogy—So What’s Left to Cover?

The Bourbon Kings Trilogy by JR Ward

WARNING: This post will contain spoilers for the two books in The Bourbon Kings trilogy

Most romance readers will tell you that discovering the genre was somewhat of a clandestine affair for them. That sack of Harlequin Presents novels they found in Mom’s closet.  The lone, well-thumbed bodice ripper they found on the book shelf while babysitting the neighbor’s kids.  Not me. My first introduction to the genre was watching Dallas every Friday night with Grandma and getting hooked on The Young and the Restless during summer vacation because Mom had been watching it since 1978. I loved everything about soap operas: the angst, the love affairs, the break-ups, the never-ending drama.  However the real selling point on soaps has always been the characters. Yes, they’re fictional and obviously viewers know this. But when a soap is firing on all cylinders those fictional characters begin to feel like real people. This is exactly what J.R. Ward has done with The Bourbon Kings. She’s reminded romance fans why soaps are a branch of the same family tree.

The series has been marketed as a trilogy, which means we’re down to only one book left to wrap up all the sudsy shenanigans, The Devil’s Cut, due out in August 2017.  Immediately after finishing The Angel’s Share, I’ll admit, I had doubts.  Even with these books running longer at over 400 pages, Ward has set up a mess of family drama that still needs to be tied up in the final book. The deck almost depleted, let’s take a look at the cards we’re still holding for book three, shall we?

[Read more...]

Feb 15 2017 11:00am

Reading Lisa Kleypas’ Wallflowers: Appreciating the Final Wallflower in Scandal in Spring

In a delightful journey that began with Secrets of a Summer Night in 2004, we accompanied the Wallflowers—young society misses Annabelle, Lillian, Evangeline, and Daisy—as they banded together in a hunt for husbands that led to love and matrimony...if not always in that order.

But if we thought we’d seen the last of our beloved friends, we were (happily) wrong: Lisa Kleypas has announced the Wallflowers will return in her next historical romance, Devil in Spring with the story of Evangeline and Sebastian’s son!

In anticipation of Devil in Spring’s release on February 21, we’ve decided to do what any romance reader would: Revisit the books that started it all! And so, every week for the next four weeks, we invite you to join us in reading—whether for the first time or the fiftieth!—and discussing the first four Wallflower romances: Secrets of a Summer NightIt Happened One Autumn, Devil in Winterand Scandal in Spring.

Scandal in Spring by Lisa Kleypas

The date Scandal in Spring came out, in 2006, I distinctly remember storming through three different Barnes & Nobles in my hometown area (before e-readers), because the previous two stores I had visited did not have the book available on the day it was released. Talk about a panic attack. When I finally flew home, ready to savor my copy, I remember the split-second thought of, “This is it! This is the last book in the Wallflower series. How is this going to end? All my characters that I just spent the last year with, obsessing over each romance…”

And with the reread, truly my heart went out to Daisy. Dating was rough for Daisy Bowman. Yeah, she had that hot Gypsy kiss, but she’s still single, and now her soap tycoon father is convinced that she cannot find a suitable match in England. To add insult to injury, he’s ready to arrange her marriage, and he knows just the bachelor; his own butt-kissing protégé from the United States, Matthew Swift. Daisy could not be any more turned off. She recalls Matthew as a gangly awkward kiss-up who doted on her father’s every business advice. But, of course, Daisy ends up surprised when she meets the handsome, mature, and charming Matthew Swift. Luckily, she has her friends there to support her. I’m not sure she could have had her story without the support of the Wallflowers. Sure, Lillian was an overbearing older sister at some points, but Matthew is successfully vetted through all their judgements and evaluations.

[Get by with a little from your friends...]

Feb 15 2017 9:30am

Lisa Renee Jones Excerpt: Damage Control

Lisa Renee Jones

Damage Control by Lisa Renee Jones

The only thing more dangerous than a dark secret is a damaged heart…

Shane Brandon has been pushed to the brink, torn between his corrupt family and his explosive, all-consuming desire for Emily Stevens, who he now knows is not who, and what, she seems. Has he trusted the wrong person? Will she, not his brother Derek, be the ultimate destruction of his family Empire.

Emily tries to run from Shane, but he will stop her, confront her, force her to reveal all – one hot touch and kiss, at a time, under every intimate detail of who this woman is, and what she wants, is exposed. But as he tears away the dangers of the unknowns with the woman in his bed, and in his heart, The Martina Cartel, has set their sites on his company, his family, and the one piece of leverage they believe he won’t gamble with: Emily.

Get a sneak peek at Lisa Renee Jones's Damage Control (available February 21, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.


“You make me remember I need to be good and right in my choices.”

“Do you ever question doing what is good and right?”

“There have been times when I felt like my hand was forced.”

“When you were a lawyer?”

“No,” I say. “I manipulated the law, as does every attorney, but I never broke it. I’m talking about when I’m with my family.”

“Did you go where they lead?”

“Not so far.”

“That sounds like you might.”

“I don’t want to be them.”

[Read the full excerpt now...]

Feb 15 2017 8:03am

Do You Like Charming Heroes?

We've talked a lot about the brooding hero. He's the alpha of few words—the Heathcliffs and the Rochesters and the Darcys. We love them all. But there's something to be said for a hero who can charm the pants (literally and figuratively) off a heroine! 

Do you have strong thoughts one way or another on charming heroes? Do you prefer the brooding, silent time or the silver tongued devil? 

Tell us about it in the comments!

Feb 14 2017 5:00pm

Dirty Sexy Money: Romance News and Deals from Lisa Renee Jones, Grace Burrowes, and More

Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in romance.

{Did you know you can sign up to receive Afternoon Tea as an e-mail? Sign up to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Hard Rules by Lisa Renee Jones

Deal Alert: Lisa Renee Jones' Hard Rules is $1.99 on Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* "All the elements of your standard meet-cute are in place—and delightfully well done,” writes blogger KC in her review. And then things turn dangerous and sexy. Check out the First Look here.  

Deal Alert: Grace Burrowes' The Trouble with Dukes is $1.99 on Kobo | B&N | Amazon | iBooks | etc.* Check out our First Look for The Trouble With Dukes, and get into Burrowes' heroes, who “fall hard and fast” for their heroines. 

Deal Alert: Naima Simone's The Millionaire Makeover is $.99 on Amazon | iBooks | B&N | Kobo | etc.* A best-friend's-little-sister story complete with pining and a charity bachelor auction? Yes, please. We can't get enough of the best-friend's-little-sister trope

[+ A letter from a Winston Brother...]

Feb 14 2017 4:32pm

Nora Roberts Goes Dark with Year One: Read the Book Description!

Cover to Be Revealed for Nora Roberts' Year OneA pretty sweet Valentine's Day just got EVEN BETTER thanks to breaking Nora Roberts book news!

While Echoes in Death just dropped last week and we have Come Sundown to look forward to this May, our hunger for new Nora Roberts is never sated. Luckily, we now have scoop on her December release, Year One, and it sounds intense. Here's what we know so far about this first volume in a new series, the Chronicles of The One:

A stunning new novel from the #1 New York Times bestselling author―an epic of hope and horror, chaos and magic, and a journey that will unite a desperate group of people to fight the battle of their lives…

It began on New Year’s Eve.

The sickness came on suddenly, and spread quickly. The fear spread even faster. Within weeks, everything people counted on began to fail them. The electrical grid sputtered; law and government collapsed―and more than half of the world’s population was decimated.

Where there had been order, there was now chaos. And as the power of science and technology receded, magic rose up in its place. Some of it is good, like the witchcraft worked by Lana Bingham, practicing in the loft apartment she shares with her lover, Max. Some of it is unimaginably evil, and it can lurk anywhere, around a corner, in fetid tunnels beneath the river―or in the ones you know and love the most.

As word spreads that neither the immune nor the gifted are safe from the authorities who patrol the ravaged streets, and with nothing left to count on but each other, Lana and Max make their way out of a wrecked New York City. At the same time, other travelers are heading west too, into a new frontier. Chuck, a tech genius trying to hack his way through a world gone offline. Arlys, a journalist who has lost her audience but uses pen and paper to record the truth. Fred, her young colleague, possessed of burgeoning abilities and an optimism that seems out of place in this bleak landscape. And Rachel and Jonah, a resourceful doctor and a paramedic who fend off despair with their determination to keep a young mother and three infants in their care alive.

In a world of survivors where every stranger encountered could be either a savage or a savior, none of them knows exactly where they are heading, or why. But a purpose awaits them that will shape their lives and the lives of all those who remain.

The end has come. The beginning comes next.

Intriguing, right?! Stay tuned for more as we get it, including the cover when it's revealed!

P.S. Don't forget to vote for J.D. Robb's Eve/Roarke in the annual Swoonies couples battle!


Learn more about or pre-order a copy of Year One by Nora Roberts, available December 5, 2017:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at iTunes

Buy at Kobo




Feb 14 2017 3:00pm

Remember First Love on Valentine’s Day!

Under Pressure by Lori Foster

Happy Valentine's Day! We're thrilled to welcome Lori Foster (Under Pressure) to Heroes and Heartbreakers. For many, Lori Foster is among their first romance novels, but today Lori is here to talk about different first loves—the kind that end in happy ever afters! Thanks, Lori!

I haven’t read many books based on Valentine’s Day (although I’ve written a few!) but I have read books that are perfect for the holiday. The books that immediately come to mind feature—ta da!—first love. With that idea in mind, I have several I’d like to recommend that range from YA, to historical, and contemporary.

The queen of first love stories is, in my opinion, Katie McGarry. She writes the most amazing, mature, emotional, and sexy YA stories where the characters fall in love and you know it’s forever. I’ve loved all her books, but my absolute favorite is Chasing Impossible, because Logan’s love saved Abby, when she was on the verge of being lost. Oh, how I loved that story, and I know you will too!

A veteran of writing first love, and one of my favorite go-to authors, is Johanna Lindsey. Oh, those Mallory boys! The two most famous (infamous?) of course, are Anthony and James, the first being a “connoisseur of women,” and the older brother being “a gentleman pirate.” But when they fell in love, it was forever - and hilarious, and so entertaining that I revisit those book, as well as the entire Mallory and Anderson clan, quite often. If you haven’t read her before (though I can’t imagine anyone who hasn’t!) start with Love Only Once, then go to Anthony’s story in Tender Rebel, then Gentle Rogue with James. Trust me, you’ll be glomming the whole historical series.

[So many first loves...]

Feb 14 2017 2:30pm

Love Notes to Our Valentines from Nora Roberts, Christina Lauren, and More!

Sometimes it's just best to bow down to the experts. With a little help from some of our favorite romance authors (and their books), we've created five cards that we think say just what we're feelingpretty well. For more inspiration on how to fill in that daunting “blank space” in your Valentine's Day card, look to these romantic quotes.

[Say it with a card... on us!]

Feb 14 2017 2:00pm

Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveals from Joanna Chambers and JL Merrow!

Team H&H has two fantastic covers for you today from authors Joanna Chambers and JL Merrow. These two distinct titles are a part of a multi-author series Porthkennack, set in Britain with titles that are both contemporary and historical. In Joanna Chambers' A Gathering Storm, a grief-stricken scientist meets a land steward and while their passions ignite, their bond may be too fragile to weather the storm. And in JL Merrow's Wake Up Call, a south London mechanic and a former barrister find love and normalcy in the strangest of circumstances.

A Gathering Storm by Joanna Chambers

A Gathering Storm by Joanna Chambers

When grief-stricken scientist Sir Edward Fitzwilliam provokes public scorn by defending a sham spiritualist, he’s forced to retreat to Porthkennack to lick his wounds. Ward’s reputation is in tatters, but he’s determined to continue the work he began after the death of his beloved brother.

In Porthkennack, Ward meets Nicholas Hearn, land steward to the Roscarrock family. Ward becomes convinced that Nick, whose Romany mother was reportedly clairvoyant, is the perfect man to assist with his work. But Nick—who has reason to distrust the whims of wealthy men—is loath to agree. Until Fate steps in to lend a hand.

Despite Nick’s misgivings, he discovers that Ward is not the high-handed aristocrat he first thought. And when passion ignites between them, Nick learns there’s much more to love than the rushed, clandestine encounters he’s used to. Nevertheless, Nick’s sure that wealthy, educated Ward will never see him as an equal.

A storm is gathering, but with Nick’s self-doubts and Ward’s growing obsession, the fragile bond between the two men may not be strong enough to withstand it.

Learn more about or pre-order a copy of A Gathering Storm by Joanna Chambers, available April 17, 2017 from Riptide Publishing.

[+ The cover for Wake Up Call...]

Feb 14 2017 1:00pm

Cora Carmack Excerpt: Roar

Cora Carmack

Roar by Cora Carmack

In a land ruled and shaped by violent magical storms, power lies with those who control them.

Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora's been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.

To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks—storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.

Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.

She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.

Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.

Get a sneak peek at Cora Carmack 's Roar (available June 13, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Aurora’s cheeks hurt from smiling, and her face was hot from what felt like one unending blush. She held Cassius’s elbow, leaning in to him as she tottered like she had drunk her weight in wine. She hadn’t had a single drop, but she felt slightly drunk all the same. He held her both her hands atop his forearm, keeping her steady every time she inevitably tripped over her dress.

Yesterday she had been certain that life as she knew it was coming to an end, with her future resting on a blade’s edge as thin as the half-truths they’d told for years. But now . . . all the world looked different through hope’s glow.

[Read the full Roar excerpt...]

Feb 14 2017 12:00pm

20 Date-Night Approved Valentine’s Day Episodes, Movies, and More to Stream

Source: Shutterstock

Whether it’s romance you’re looking for or just something to make you feel good and laugh, Team H&H has some suggestions on things you can watch if you want to stay in and laugh, swoon—or a combo of the two. These are all availabe to stream on Amazon, Netflix, Hulu, and more, so you don't even need to leave the comfort of your own home to have the perfect night in!

Feel the Love

Two Weeks Notice

Two Weeks’ Notice (Netflix) —Sandra Bullock and Hugh Grant play conscientious lawyer, and clueless CEO respectively in this tropey, delightful rom-com.

The Office: Episode 7x16, “PDA” (Netflix) — Holly and Michael make their relationship Office Official when they announce they’re back together… which earns them a stern talking to on the company policy on office PDA.

North & South (On Netflix until March 1)—Based on the novel of the same name by Elizabeth Gaskell, get ready to swoon at Richard Armitage’s smoldering looks. Watch this title before it leaves Netflix on March 1st.

Belle  (available to rent or purchase on Amazon)— Dido Elizabeth Belle is the mixed race daughter of an English captain in this gorgeous film about 18th century England. It is heart-wrenching, but oh so beautiful.

[More swoony and feel good titles ahead...]

Feb 14 2017 10:00am

The Swoonies 2017, Round 1: Contemporary Couples

Round 1 is now closed. Keep voting in Round 2!



  • Eva/Gideon vs. Lucy/Josh

  • Cletus/Jennifer vs. Dom/Luke

Welcome to H&H’s The Swoonies, where romance’s most popular pairings go head-to-head for the title of H&H’s Swoonworthiest Couple of the Year!

ROUND 1 POLLS ARE NOW OPEN! Vote now until Friday, February 17, at 10:00 a.m. (EST)

Get the newsletter button

Couple Battle #1

Couple: Eva/Gideon
Book/Series: One with You (Crossfire series)
Author: Sylvia Day
What brings them together: Eva takes a job in Gideon’s company and, before her first day, runs into the magnetic Crossfire CEO in the office building’s lobby.
What threatens to pull them apart: Abuse survivors Gideon and Eva must each work through their pasts to be able to live their happily ever after.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'There aren't words to tell you what you mean to me. But I hope that when you see this ring on your hand, you'll remember that you shine as brightly as diamonds in my life and you're infinitely more precious.' ” —One with You

Couple: Lucy/Josh
Book/Series: The Hating Game
Author: Sally Thorne
What brings them together: As executive assistants to rival co-CEOs, they spend 10 hours a day staring at each other across their desks. Now they're competing for the same promotion.
What threatens to pull them apart: Lucy and Josh are infamous for hating each other...
Swoonworthiest Moment: “I love him so much it's like a thread piercing me. Punching holes. Dragging through. Stitching love into me. I'll never be able to untangle myself from this feeling. The color of love is surely this robin's-egg blue.” —The Hating Game

VOTE NOW in Round 2:


Couple Battle #2

Couple: Cletus/Jennifer
Book/Series: Beard Science (Winston Brothers series)
Author: Penny Reid
What brings them together: Jennifer blackmails Cletus into helping her shake her “banana cake queen” image.
What threatens to pull them apart: Jennifer’s family and Cletus’ secrets are their biggest hurdles.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'You’re my beginning, middle, and end.' ” —Beard Science 

Couple: Dom/Luke
Book/Series: Fast Connection (Cyberlove series)
Author: Megan Erickson & Santino Hassell
What brings them together: Dom and Luke meet via a hookup app!
What threatens to pull them apart: Family drama has a way of causing major problems.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “I couldn't get enough of him. He was an addiction now, and I hadn't decided yet if he was a healthy one like eating apples every day or an unhealthy one like meth.” —Fast Connection

VOTE NOW in Round 2:


[Read more...]

Feb 14 2017 10:00am

The Swoonies 2017, Round 1: Historical Couples

Round 1 is now closed! Keep voting in Round 2!

  • Rhys/Helen vs. Daisy/Crash

  • Richard/Cyprian vs. Rhine/Eddy

Welcome to H&H’s The Swoonies, where romance’s most popular pairings go head-to-head for the title of H&H’s Swoonworthiest Couple of the Year!

ROUND 1 POLLS ARE NOW OPEN! Vote now until Friday, February 17, at 10:00 a.m. (EST)

Get the newsletter button

Couple Battle #1

Couple: Rhys/Helen
Book/Series: Marrying Winterborne (Ravenels series)
Author: Lisa Kleypas
What brings them together: Rhys and Helen enter a marriage of convenience.
What threatens to pull them apart: If anyone can tame the ruthless Rhys Winterborne, it’s Helen, yet his enemies and her dark secret are a force to be reckoned with...
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'Every time you look at me, you'll remember that I'm half his.'

" 'No.' His hand came to the side of her face, his thumb wiping her tears. 'You're all mine.' His voice was deep and shaken. 'Every hair on your head. Every part of you was made to be loved by me.' ” —Marrying Winterborne

Couple: Daisy/Crash
Book/Series: Her Every Wish (Worth Saga)
Author: Courtney Milan
What brings them together: Crash offers to teach Daisy how to act like a man so that she can win a grant to learn a trade. 
What threatens to pull them apart: Daisy and Crash’s first attempt at a relationship ends in heartache, and they have to work toward trusting each other again.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'I love you. Will you please stop teasing me and tell me you’ll marry me and share everything?'

“ 'I suppose if there are pastries…' She hesitated just a moment. 'Then, yes. Yes. I might as well admit that I love you, too.' ” Her Every Wish



Couple Battle #2

Couple: Richard/Cyprian
Book/Series: A Gentleman’s Position (A Society of Gentlemen series)
Author:  KJ Charles
What brings them together: Cyprian is Richard’s valet and “fixer”
What threatens to pull them apart: Richard attempts to promote Cyprian so their stations in life aren’t so disparate, which makes Cyprian feel looked down upon and like Richard cares more for what society thinks than for Cyprian.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'I want you back. I want you as my lover, my right hand, my devious, lying, counterfeiting, entirely unprincipled fox. ' He took a deep breath. 'My valet.' ” —A Gentleman’s Position

Couple: Rhine/Eddy
Book/Series: Forbidden (Old West series)
Author: Beverly Jenkins
What brings them together: Rhine rescues Eddy in the desert and helps her recover. 
What threatens to pull them apart: Society seeks to keep them apart; Rhine is engaged to a woman from a powerful political family, and his life and livelihood depend on him passing as a white man, while Eddy has no intention of risking her plans to move to California to open her own restaurant.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'Your sweetness is so much stronger than their hate.' ”



[Read more...]

Feb 14 2017 10:00am

The Swoonies 2017, Round 1: Romantic Suspense Couples

Round 1 is now closed. Keep voting in Round 2!

  • Eve/Roarke vs. Reed/Laney

  • Cal/Zelda vs. Evelyn/David

Welcome to H&H’s The Swoonies, where romance’s most popular pairings go head-to-head for the title of H&H’s Swoonworthiest Couple of the Year!

ROUND 1 POLLS ARE NOW OPEN! Vote now until Friday, February 17, at 10:00 a.m. (EST)

Get the newsletter button

Couple Battle #1

Couple: Eve/Roarke
Book/Series: Apprentice in Death (In Death series)
Author: J.D. Robb
What brings them together: Eve’s a homicide detective, and Roarke’s her prime suspect...
What threatens to pull them apart: These days? Mostly just their constant brushes with death.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'I love you,' she said again, pouring herself into the kiss. 'You saved me.'

“ 'Each other.' He laid her back, covered her with his body. 'We saved each other.' ” —Apprentice in Death

Couple: Reed/Laney
Book/Series: Deep Dark (Tracers series)
Author: Laura Griffin
What brings them together: White-hat computer hacker Laney offers to help police detective Reed Novak with his homicide investigation.
What threatens to pull them apart: Not only are they a classic opposites-attract couple, but Laney has a hard time trusting anyone with her secrets, while Reed worries he’s too old for her.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'I’m crazy, stupid, out of my mind in love with you, Laney. … Think you can handle it?' ” —Deep Dark



Couple Battle #2

Couple: Cal/Zelda
Book/Series: A Player for a Princess (Dirty Players series)
Author: Tia Louise
What brings them together: Zelda has been blackmailed into trying to destroy Cal’s older brother’s reputation, and Cal’s determined to stop her.
What threatens to pull them apart: Zelda’s on the run from assassins, and Cal just wants to keep her safe.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'I never saw you coming. Even if I had, I never could have been prepared for you. Not in a million years.' ” —A Player for a Princess

Couple: Evelyn/David
Book/Series: Extreme Honor (True Heroes series)
Author: Piper J. Drake
What brings them together: Ex-soldier and dog trainer David is having trouble helping K-9 Atlas deal with the loss of his handler—until dog whisperer Evelyn walks into their lives.
What threatens to pull them apart: David has trouble letting people get close and Lyn’s life is being threatened by someone who doesn’t want her working with Atlas...
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'I love you, Evelyn Jones. Since I don’t even know when. I want you in my life and I’ll wait forever if you need me to.' ” —Extreme Honor



[Read more...]

Feb 14 2017 10:00am

The Swoonies 2017, Round 1: Paranormal Couples

Round 1 is now closed! Keep voting in Round 2!



  • Raphael/Elena vs. Rhage/Mary
  • Mercy/Adam vs. Feyre/Rhysand

Welcome to H&H’s The Swoonies, where romance’s most popular pairings go head-to-head for the title of H&H’s Swoonworthiest Couple of the Year!

ROUND 1 POLLS ARE NOW CLOSED! Continue voting in Round 2!

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Couple Battle #1

Couple: Raphael/Elena
Book/Series: Archangel’s Heart (Guild Hunter series)
Author: Nalini Singh
What brings them together: Archangel Raphael hires vampire hunter Elena to track an archangel gone rogue.
What threatens to pull them apart: Raphael and Elena’s enemies are many and they are powerful.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “No one will take my Elena from me. I'll destroy the world before I allow that to happen.” —Archangel’s Heart

Couple: Rhage/Mary
Book/Series: The Beast (Black Dagger Brotherhood series)
Author: J.R. Ward 
What brings them together: A human thrown into the world of vampires, Mary is dependent on Rhage for protection, which morphs into love...
What threatens to pull them apart: What doesn’t? Vampire/human complications, curses, enemies out for their destruction...Rhage and Mary overcome a lot.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “So if you had the chance...even if there was no music and no ballgown, no tuxedo or gala...when your true love asked you to dance? It was important to say yes.” —The Beast

VOTE NOW in Round 2!:


Couple Battle #2

Couple: Mercy/Adam
Book/Series: Fire Touched (Mercy Thompson series)
Author: Patricia Briggs 
What brings them together: Werewolf Adam happens to be Mercy’s next-door neighbor.
What threatens to pull them apart: Pack infighting, for sure, though Adam has Mercy’s back through it all.
Swoonworthiest Moment: “ 'I misspoke,' he said in a steady voice. 'She doesn’t need me to make sure she has enough food or a place to live—that is my privilege, but she doesn’t need me to do that. She doesn’t need me to keep her safe or to make her a whole person. She doesn’t need me to do anything except love her. Which I do.' ” —Fire Touched

Couple: Feyre/Rhysand
Book/Series: A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses series)
Author: Sarah J. Maas 
What brings them together: Rhys saves Feyre from faeries. Oh, and they’re fated to be mated.
What threatens to pull them apart: Feyre hates Rhys, at least until she understands his true motives...
Swoonworthiest Moment: " 'She is my mate. And my spy,' I said too quietly. 'And she is the High Lady of the Night Court.' ” —A Court of Mist and Fury

VOTE NOW in Round 2!:


[Read more...]

Feb 14 2017 8:03am

Can You Think of Romances Set on Valentine’s Day?

Valentine for Hire by Aria Cole

Christmas and New Year's gets plenty of love in the romance genre, but an oft overlooked holiday is Valentine's Day! 

We can think of a few books featuring Valentine's Day, can you? Start the day off right by sharing in the comments for those of us looking for a themed-read!

Feb 13 2017 4:30pm

Games to Play: Romance Deals from Sylvia Day & Christine Feehan

Grab a mug of tea and a scone and let's gossip about what's hot in romance.

{Did you know you can sign up to receive Afternoon Tea as an e-mail? Sign up to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Dangerous to Know by Dawn Ryder

Deal Alert: Dawn Ryder's Dangerous to Know is $1.99 on Kobo | B&N | Amazon | iBooks | etc* A bad-boy special ops member and a colonel's daughter meet in this sexy romantic suspense. Do spies, hitmen, and SEALs just do it better? 

Deal Alert: Sylvia Day's Bared to You is discounted to $2.99 on Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* Don't miss your chance to read Gideon and Eva's story from the beginning. Would you like to see the Crossfire series on screen someday? We've got some suggestions on who we'd like to see play Eva and Gideon. 

Deal Alert: Christine Feehan's Murder Game is $1.99 on Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* The genetically engineered men and women of Feehan's GhostWalker world have to infiltrate a dangerous game in order to clear their name. “GhostWalkers are constantly forced to make choices”, blogger Dolly Sickles writes. “The options are always laced with life or death decisions.”


[+What's new on H&H...]