<i>Sweeter Than Sin</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Sweeter Than Sin: Exclusive Excerpt Shiloh Walker She can’t ignore the urgent heat between them <i>Ruptured</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Ruptured: Exclusive Excerpt Maggie Mae Gallagher "He said my name like a benediction..." <i>Misbehavior</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Misbehavior: Exclusive Excerpt Kathryn Kelly She's about to have the ride of her life... <i>Firebug</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Firebug: Exclusive Excerpt Lish McBride "I tried my best not to admire my friend as he stripped..."
From The Blog
September 16, 2014
5 Classic Secondary Couples
Willa aka willaful
September 16, 2014
Authors as Romance Heroines
Regina Kyle
September 15, 2014
Karen Marie Moning's Burned News!
Team H & H
September 15, 2014
Trailer for Mockingjay Part 1 Released!
Team H & H
September 12, 2014
Friday Beefcake: A Venti Hottie, Please!
Team H & H
Sun
Sep 14 2014 3:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Haven’s Audrey/Nathan, Audrey/Duke, and More!

The SyFy show Haven returned this past Thursday, and while things are unresolved for some of the characters, one thing is certain—the chemistry is off the charts!

Audrey Parker has learned a lot about herself and the Troubled people of Haven over the last four seasons. She seems to soothe their Troubles and people are drawn to her. None more so than Nathan Wuornos and Duke Crocker. Never before in a show have I had so much trouble deciding on a 'ship, and normally I stay far away from a love triangle, but maybe the same thing that pulls Nathan and Duke to Audrey has me under a spell too! To this day, I still can't decide if I love the “awww”-warm-and-fuzzy moments Audrey has with Nathan (that simple kiss on the cheek still undoes me), or the sizzling tension she has with Duke (but she soothes his soul, I tell myself!), and yes, sometimes my little shipping heart wonders what it would be like if all that tension between Nathan and Duke were used in a different way.

Who do you ship on the show—and it doesn't have to be limited to a twosome (wink, wink)?

[All the ships, plus a poll, are docking in Haven...]

Sun
Sep 14 2014 12:00pm
Excerpt

Misbehavior: Exclusive Excerpt

Kathryn Kelly

Misbehavior by Kathryn Kelly

Matthew “Val” Taylor, the Road Captain in the club, was introduced to sex at an early age. Saved from the streets by the club’s Enforcer and President years ago, Val now lives for women and the open road. Until the night the only woman he’s ever loved is almost killed. Val is determined to change his ways and be the man Zoann Donovan should have and the father their son deserves.

Zoann has loved Val for a long time. Violence and bitter betrayal forces her to ignore her feelings and distance herself not only from the sexy RC, but her beloved brother, too. Until she discovers the truth. Can Zoann ever be forgiven for all the pain she’s caused? Will Val overcome his own demons and have a future with her and their son? Who will survive in an MC filled with lust and revenge, love and hate?

Warning: This is a tale of rape, murders, deception, heartache, lies, and infidelity. The road to redemption is a tumultuous struggle where only the strong survive and justice is served…Outlaw-style.

Get a sneak peek of Kathryn Kelly's Misbehavior (available September 17, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Zoann opened her eyes, the sunlight streaming through the windows hurting her eyes. An itch hit her nose and she scratched it, the ring on her finger bumping against the bridge. She frowned. A ring?

The last time she’d awakened, her finger had been bare. But, then, again, a bunch of people had been in the room, even Father Wilkins…

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

Sun
Sep 14 2014 10:00am

First Look: Alicia Hunter Pace’s Forgiving Jackson (September 15, 2014)

Forgiving Jackson by Alicia Hunter PaceAlicia Hunter Pace
Forgiving Jackson
Crimson Romance / September 15, 2014 / $4.99 digital

Coming home to Beauford Bend opens up old wounds for four sexy, successful brothers, but the love of a few good Southern women will heal their hearts and change their lives forever.

Country music heartthrob Jackson Beauford isn’t used to hearing “no” for an answer. When a tragic fire at one of his concerts stirs memories of the blaze that claimed his family years ago, all he wants is to go back to his childhood home in Tennessee and wallow in his grief. But he arrives home to chaos . . . and a Southern magnolia with her heels dug in.

After suffering a vicious attack in New York City, Emory Lowell returned to Beauford Bend, a place she’s loved since she was a teenager. Now in charge of Around the Bend Elegant Events, she’s not about to let a spoiled superstar take away her livelihood. The boutique artisan town of Beauford depends on this business, and so does she. With its high walls and around-the- clock security, Beauford Bend is the only place she’s ever truly felt safe.

Jackson insists she close down his late aunt's business and leave him in peace, but quiet Emory refuses to budge, knowing this is a battle worth fighting. As a passionate attraction flares between these two wounded souls, they discover there’s much more at stake here than business. Jackson may be just the person to help Emory face her past, and if she can help him learn to forgive himself, their love might be the key to turning Beauford Bend back into a real home.

Two wounded individuals intersecting at the same place with the overriding desire for shelter and solace shouldn’t be at cross purposes. But they are when it means two different things, as in Alicia Hunter Pace's Forgiving Jackson.

[Sounds deliciously complicated...]

Sat
Sep 13 2014 12:00pm

Outlander: Unpacking a Controversial Scene

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon**Spoiler Alert! If you have yet to read Outlander or are new to the show, do NOT read ahead. This post is unpacking a very controversial scene from the book. Reader beware!**

When I first picked Outlander up, nearly fifteen years ago, my love for it was immediate, overwhelming, and complete. I devoured every page—the plot, the setting, and above all the unconventional romance between Jamie and Claire, whose love story would go on to form the backbone of so many sequels. I was certain that this remarkable book was destined for a spot in my all-time Top Five…

…and then I got to the part where Jamie beats Claire.

Hello, needle-on-a-record-album screeching sound!

Now, in fairness, it’s possible that I would react to That Scene a little bit differently were I to encounter it for the first time today, when everyone has safe words and fur-lined handcuffs, while unassuming suburban split-levels are being outfitted with their very own Red Rooms of Pain. It’s possible…but it’s not likely. What Jamie does to Claire is not done in a fun, consensual, Fifty-Shades-of-Tartan kind of way. It’s done out of anger, frustration, desperation, and even in a sense necessity, as Jamie is in danger of losing the respect of his men for “allowing” Claire to behave in such an erratic and potentially dangerous manner:

[She might need to be put in her place...but this way?]

Fri
Sep 12 2014 4:30pm

Friday Beefcake: A Venti Hottie, Please!

David GandyT'is the season of Pumpkin Spice Latte's and colder weather clothing. Well, what's a cold day without a cup of joe to warm you up—and a side of beefcake to get you even hotter.

We scoured the interwebs for hot men drinking hot coffee and found some other pretty sexy contenders, including David Gandy, Patrick Dempsey, Lenny Kravitz, and so many more!

[Would you like whipped cream on that...]

Fri
Sep 12 2014 2:45pm

Drink Up! Boardwalk Empire and Jamie Brenner’s Gin Lovers

Boardwalk Empire

**Note: This post contains spoilers of all aired episodes of Boardwalk Empire and Jamie Brenner's Gin Lovers, proceed with caution!**

It is the fifth and final season of HBO’s Boardwalk Empire. The glitz and the glam, the booze and bullets will be no more. Six years have passed since the shocking end to season four, but the blood and booze are still pouring, Nucky style.

It’s 1931, and the Great Depression is in full swing, beloved characters are dead (Who can forget Richard Harrow dying? My all time favorite character on BE and maybe all of television. His literal two faces; light and dark, deadly and loving… Le sigh). The remaining characters  are trying to reinvent themselves in the aftermath of the Stock Market Crash. Enoch “Nucky” Thompson is especially in a pinch. No more of that money flowing as free as the whiskey. Times are tough and Prohibition is an even tougher game, and more deadly.

[Ruh-roh, that doesn't sound good...]

Fri
Sep 12 2014 1:00pm

Firing Readers Up: Donna Grant’s Dark Kings Series

“They had a responsibility as Dragon Kings, a duty that no other could fulfill. An obligation caused by one of their own so very long ago."

The Dark King series by Donna Grant, has its origins a millennium ago, when dragons ruled over all the other creatures. The leaders—men who shifted into dragons—were powerful, magical and immortal, and became known as the Dragon Kings. When the humans appeared, the Kings' job was to protect them  and keep peace between both human and dragon race. Everything fell apart when a human woman who had vowed to love a Dragon King betrayed them all. The Dragon Kings had to conceal the dragon race from the human realm and placed a spell to protect any Dragon King from falling in love with a human again.

Eons later, a new evil lurks to disturb the peace the Dragon Kings have worked so hard to attain, pulling them into a war they don’t want. To make matters worse, the magic placed on the Dragon Kings is failing. One by one, the Dragon Kings are falling in love with the same race that had betrayed them all those years ago.

In the first Dark King book, Dark Craving, Hal has found his mate with the human, Cassie Hunter. The magic that was supposed to make him immune to human affection isn't working: “He wanted Cassie with an unmovable, unyielding tenacity.”

[We like that kind of tenacity...]

Fri
Sep 12 2014 12:00pm
Excerpt

Firebug: Exclusive Excerpt

Lish McBride

Firebug by Lish McBride

Ava is a firebug—she can start fires with her mind. Which would all be well and good if she weren’t caught in a deadly contract with the Coterie, a magical mafia. She’s one of their main hitmen . . . and she doesn’t like it one bit. Not least because her boss, Venus, killed Ava’s mother.

When Venus asks Ava to kill a family friend, Ava rebels. She knows very well that you can’t say no to the Coterie and expect to get away with it, though, so she and her friends hit the road, trying desperately to think of a way out of the mess they find themselves in. Preferably keeping the murder to a minimum, in Lish McBride's Firebug.

Get a sneak peek of Lish McBride's Firebug (available September 23, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

This is why we can't have nice things

I woke up in Ezra’s car. I could tell it was his because it was ostentatious, it was immaculately clean, and the warm leather seats smelled like Ez—a combination of vanilla and smug vanity. If a peacock could drive, this was the car it would pick. Lock’s leather jacket was draped over me even though the car was warm and I had my own jacket on. Ezra was curled up, asleep, in the back seat. All the shifting between forms had worn him out. I peeked over the collar of Lock’s jacket and saw the telltale fluorescents of a minimart.

[Continue on to read the full excerpt of a selected scene from Firebug...]

Fri
Sep 12 2014 10:53am

Nalini Singh Shares Rock Courtship Cover, Excerpt, and Release Date!

Rock Courtship by Nalini SinghJust a few weeks after releasing Rock Addiction, Nalini Singh will be publishing the next book in her Rock Kiss contemporary romance series, Rock Courtship. Here's the blurb:

What happens when the Gentleman of Rock decides to play dirty?

A drummer for the hottest rock band on the planet, David has a single, powerful weakness: Thea, the band’s publicist and the woman who steals his breath away with her every move.

Only problem is, Thea doesn’t date clients—or musicians. Emotionally scarred by a cheating ex, she’s not about to risk her heart with a man who has groupies buzzing around him like flies. Even if his sexy smile ties her up in knots.

What she doesn’t know is that David is a one-woman man...and he’s madly in love with her. David’s determined to prove he’s worth the risk, and willing to court her, step by exquisite step. Thea’s about to discover just how long and hard this handsome drummer can play. 

And Singh is sharing an excerpt at her website:

Since he’d sacked out for so long, he didn’t have much time before he had to head to a downstairs conference room for the interviews. He’d steeled himself for the inevitability of coming face-to-face with Thea, but the sight of her still threatened to gut him.

Scowling, she strode over on sky-high red heels worn with a sleeveless and tailored black dress that ended just above her knees. “Did you put ice on that eye?”

He made himself speak, act normal—he’d become pretty good at that after the length of time he’d loved her. “Yeah, past few hours.”

“What about last night?”

He shrugged.

Her glare could’ve cut steel.

Read the rest at Nalini Singh's website. Rock Courtship will be released September 30, 2014.

Fri
Sep 12 2014 9:30am

First Look: Connie Brockway’s The Songbird’s Seduction (September 16, 2014)

Connie Brockway
The Songbird's Seduction
Montlake Romance / September 16, 2014) / $9.99 print, $3.99 digital

Effervescent bon vivant Lucy Eastlake is a young operetta singer whose star is on the rise in Edwardian London. Though struggling to maintain her beloved great-aunts’ household, she holds fast to the belief that “things will work out.” Now, with the fiftieth anniversary of a siege her great-aunt Lavinia lived through approaching, it looks like Lucy is right, because a fortune is due to be divided among the survivors. All Lucy and her great-aunts have to do is travel to a small Pyrenees town to claim Lavinia’s share of a fabulous treasure in rubies. What could be more simple?

Professor Ptolemy Archibald Grant is the brilliant, straitlaced grandson of a British lord who also withstood the siege. When his grandfather asks him as a matter of honor to escort his old love on the journey, the about-to-be married professor agrees, not expecting Lucy to be part of the bargain. Losing the great-aunts en route, the handsome, buttoned-down professor finds himself caught up in Lucy’s quirky, bewildering, and probably illegal efforts to reunite with them, as he is drawn further and further into an inexplicable infatuation with the free-spirited singer. What could be more complicated?

But when unwilling attraction gives way to sizzling passion, both will be forced to confront the ages-old question of whether love trumps honor…or the other way around.

Oh, Connie Brockway's The Songbird's Seduction was a fun read! The setting is refreshingly different, set in 1908 Edwardian England, and has a distinct Bringing Up Baby vibe, a 1938 screwball comedy starring Katharine Hepburn and Cary Grant. Our hero's name is even Ptolemy Archibald Grant (Archibald is Cary's real name) and he's a professor of anthropology. His heroine is Lucy Eastlake, and up and coming operetta singer and general free spirit. And while Cary Grant looked perpetually gob-smacked in the movie, poor Archie is similarly caught up in Lucy's whirlwind and left wondering what the heck happened to his well-ordered life.

[Seduction of the zaniest!]

Fri
Sep 12 2014 8:04am

What’s the Longest You’ve Gone Without Reading a Book?

Viggo Mortensen in Lord of the Rings

Home, work, relationships, family, school, a favorite television series or a big movie (or series of movies*); sometimes you get derailed from constantly reading (that's okay!)

Worse is when you just can't get into anything, so you decide to take a break from reading for a bit to get your excitement back.

No matter what the distraction, we're wondering—what's the longest time you've gone without reading a book? 

*We don't blame you; Aragorn is easy on the eyes.

Thu
Sep 11 2014 3:00pm

Looking for Love in Fall’s Returning Shows

Source: theaerogram.com

**Spoiler Alert: This post will contain many HUGE spoilers from previous seasons of New Girl, The Mindy Project, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, and The Vampire Diaries. Only read if you're caught up with each show or don't care about spoilers**

Networks have been airing previews, and we've gotten some tantalizing hints about what's in store for our favorite TV couples. Below, I take a look at four of my personal favorites—New Girl, The Mindy Project, Brooklyn Nine Nine (side note: I'm really into FOX shows right now, if you couldn't tell), and The Vampire Diariessome of which had MAJOR shakeups back in April/May, and speculate on what could happen next.

New Girl:

Where we left off: After a whirlwind relationship and a surprisingly mature break up, Nick and Jess were on rocky ground trying to figure out how to navigate their new dynamic while living in the same apartment. In the season finale, they acknowledge that, while they still feel for each other, they can put those feelings on hold and finally go back to being friends.

[That doesn't sound like an HEA...]

Thu
Sep 11 2014 12:00pm

Star-Struck and Bewitched: Top 5 Couples from Barbara Samuel

A Bed of Spices by Barbara SamuelIf I described my top five couples from the fiction of Barbara Samuel without giving title and author, you might justifiably conclude that the pairs figured as protagonists in novels by five different authors. How likely is it that a single author would write a cross-culture medieval set in 14th-century Germany, a contemporary featuring a recovering alcoholic heroine and a twice-divorced Native American hero, an American historical interracial romance set in WW II Texas, a contemporary romance/women’s fiction hybrid with a homecoming theme that pairs a heroine a few steps away from forty, responsible for a best friend dying of AIDS and a seventeen-year-old son, with a bad-boy, motorcycle-riding hero, and a women’s fiction novel with a biographer protagonist who falls in love with a needy, wounded blues aficionado who also raises orchids? But yet all these stories were penned by the remarkable Barbara Samuel, who has the gift of delivering a potent emotional punch in prose that falls on the ear like music and lingers in the memory like the lyrics of a favorite song.

5. Rica der Esslingen and Solomon ben Jacob, A Bed of Spices (1993)

Rica, the daughter of a German aristocrat, and Solomon, the son of a Jewish merchant, are separated by class, race, and religion, but these barriers are not enough to stop them from falling in love at first sight. Samuel’s description of their first awareness is perfection: “Like a lady stricken with the beauty of a knight in one of the poems the priest had forbidden her, Rica felt faint and star-struck and bewitched. She smiled at him. He swallowed, then glanced away quickly, a dusky stain on his cheekbones.” As they come to know each other, they fall more deeply in love, and with every scene, no matter how often I reread the book, I fall more deeply in love with these characters and this author.

[+ 4 more favorites...]

Thu
Sep 11 2014 9:30am

Top 5 Leading Ladies in Kinky Romance

Linger by Lauren JamesonToday H&H is joined by author Lauren Jameson, whose Linger is just out, and super-hot, pairing a female Dom with an Alpha male sub with some explosive results. Linger is unusual in that the Dom is female, although there are more of those pairings than you might think. And Lauren is here to share her five favorite dominant women in erotic fiction. Thanks, Lauren! 

1. Lauren in Holding The Cards by Joey W. Hill

This was the first BDSM story that I read with a dominant heroine. I was hesitant at first, and I know I’ve heard the same thing from many readers about Linger... they just don’t know if they’re going to enjoy that role reversal. But Joey Hill paints such an intensely beautiful, emotional connection between Lauren and Josh in this book that at the end that I absolutely feel in love with them both. And I want to say that by the end I didn’t care WHO was in charge, so long as they were together... but the characters were drawn in such a way that their dominance and submission was integral to who they were.

[And we're submitting to the gloriousness of this list...]

Thu
Sep 11 2014 8:19am

Throwback Thursday: Do You Recall Your First TSTL Heroine?

“How could she DO that?” Maybe you've asked that of a heroine from one (or more) of the romance novels you've read. She's put herself deliberately in danger, she hasn't spoken up when she should have, she's misunderstood something that was obvious to everyone else; if you've ever encountered one of these heroines, you have met a heroine who's Too Stupid to Live (TSTL, in shorthand romance terms).

Today for Throwback Thursday we'll ask—when's the first time you encountered a TSTL Heroine? 

Wed
Sep 10 2014 4:30pm

Hit the Road: Top 10 Motorcycle Club Heroes

Jax and Tara in Sons of Anarchy

Source: fanpop.com

As of last night,Sons of Anarchy is back on our TV screens. Jax Teller is the epitome of the MC hero: tough as nails attitude, loyal, caring and hoooooottttt. MC books have become quite the rage and it seems this type of hero won’t be fading away any time soon.

What makes a great MC hero? Tough love, alphatastic attitude, a deep loyalty for their brothers, and they’re incredibly sexy!

Here’s a list of my top gritty, rough and tumble, love to hate ‘em MC heroes (in no particular order):

[Let's get this show on the road...]

Wed
Sep 10 2014 2:00pm

First Look: Maggie Robinson’s The Unsuitable Secretary (September 16, 2014)

The Unsuitable Secretary by Maggie RobinsonMaggie Robinson
The Unsuitable Secretary
Penguin / September 16, 2014 / $4.99 digital

Harriet Benson takes her work at the Evensong Agency seriously, but lately, between convalescing from an illness and tending to her father and two young brothers, she’s had to shorten her hours. So when a promising position opens up for part time work, she immediately accepts, despite the fact that her new boss is scandalously indecent—and dangerously appealing.

Though his reputation paints him as a scoundrel, Sir Thomas Featherstone is more proper than anyone would guess. But Harriet’s wit and luscious curves are driving him to distraction. She’s the perfect woman to fill his office requirements, and other desperate needs he’s been ignoring…

Harriet has always held firm to the rule that a secretary must never fall in love with her employer. Only Thomas is determined to win her affections—and he’s willing to risk any cost to make her his…

The Unsuitable Secretary features two of romance readers' favorite tropes: the Virgin Hero and the Plus-size Heroine.

[Ooh! Not unsuitable at all!]

Wed
Sep 10 2014 12:00pm
Excerpt

Love on the Boardwalk: Exclusive Excerpt

Christi Barth

Atlantic City is the perfect place for detective Bradley Hudson to nurse his broken heart. A week of beer and strippers is sure to erase his former fiancée from his memory for good. What he didn’t count on was running into a sassy redhead from his past. Maybe a rebound romp is an even better plan…

Trina Trimble, private eye in training, is thrilled to be reunited with the hottie she almost hooked up with last summer. She’s undercover on her first solo case, but there’s always time to lock lips with a sexy cop. Besides, a fun fling with Brad doesn’t have to last beyond his week in town.

Brad and Trina are supposed to be just flirting, not forging a new forever. Brad’s still healing, and although Trina changes careers the way other women change shoes, she has finally found her calling in her new life of disguises and stakeouts. But when an irresistible job offer threatens to lure her away, Brad will need to decide to let her go or bet it all on love and risk his heart again.

Get a sneak peek at Christi Barth's Love on the Boardwalk (available September 22, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

“How about we not talk about the past anymore? I’m here to forget it, remember?”

Good enough. Trina’s heart lurched into a skip. Or maybe that was all the blood pounding straight to her girly parts in anticipation. She curled her hand around his forearm. His thick, hard forearm. “I thought that if you were still at least a tiny bit sad, you might need cheering up. A distraction. Something to make you be glad in the moment. The now.”

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt of Love on the Boardwalk...]

Wed
Sep 10 2014 9:30am

Hot Guys and Cool Dogs Have a Lot in Common

Irresistible Force by D.D. AyresToday we're pleased to welcome author D.D. Ayres to Heroes and Heartbreakers. D.D.'s new release, Irresistible Force, offers not only a hero and heroine, but a canine best friend to both of them. D.D. is here to talk about our four-legged besties and what makes them similar to some of our favorite two-legged heroes. Thanks, D.D.!

The saying is a dog is a man’s best friend.

However, we female dog owners know that a dog can also be a woman’s bestest friend. Writing the K-9 Rescue Series about hunky dedicated guys in uniform and their smart hard-charging K-9 partners has made me realize these Alpha male partnerships share a lot of traits desirable in romantic human relationships. I’m thinking that looking for these canine traits in a guy might very well help a woman find a sexy, reliable, adoring male of her own.

Desirable Traits in a Dog and A Romance Hero:

[Fetch...let's get this ball rolling!]

Wed
Sep 10 2014 8:20am

When Good Guys Go Bad

We've covered many instances of when bad guys turn good (the villain in one story who becomes the hero of the next), but what about the other way around?

Jax Teller of Sons of Anarchy started out his journey wanting to do the right thing, but events conspired against him, and now he's not. Charlie Hunnam, who plays Jax says in an interview with TV Guide, “Jax was always so tortured by the pull of who he thought he should be. There's something really liberating about being rid of the sense of having to be a good guy. This season is about Jax deciding... if he's got no reason to leave [the outlaw world], he may as well be what this world demands you be.”

Are there examples in romance where the good guy goes bad?