<i>Back to Before</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Back to Before: Exclusive Excerpt Tracy Solheim "He was grinning now, sexy laugh lines fanning out from his eyes..." <i>Foster Justice</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Foster Justice: Exclusive Excerpt Colleen Shannon "His mind might find her repulsive but his body sure as heck didn’t." Now Win This!: <i>Fifty Shades</i> Poster Now Win This!: Fifty Shades Poster Team H & H You've seen the poster, now here's a chance to have your own! <i>Marked</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Marked: Exclusive Excerpt Rebecca Zanetti "Heat pooled at the apex of her legs, stunning her with need..."
From The Blog
December 20, 2014
3 Harlequin Presents Authors Who Get it Right
John Jacobson
December 19, 2014
Friday Beefcake: Silver Bells Foxes
Team H & H
December 18, 2014
I Dream of Genies in Romance Novels
Sahara Hoshi
December 18, 2014
Happy Parental Pairs in Historical Romance
December 18, 2014
Saying Goodbye to The Hobbit
Christopher Morgan
Dec 17 2014 8:14am

NSFW: Thug Notes Explains A Christmas Carol

Thug Notes takes on Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol, just in time for the holidays.

“Aight, aight, I get it son, I'll change my ways!”

The analysis, starting at 2:45, is smart and incisive, focusing in on the key points Charles Dickens was trying to make.

Christmas all about finding the time of the year when we can put the hustle aside, keep them switches lit, and show each other love!"

Dec 16 2014 4:30pm

First Look: Sophia James’s Marriage Made in Money (December 16, 2014)

Sophia James
Marriage Made in Money (Penniless Lords)
Harlequin / December 16, 2014 / $6.50 print, $5.99 digital

After her first disastrous marriage, wealthy heiress Amethyst Cameron swore she'd never take a husband again. Yet her beloved father's deepest wish is for her to wed an aristocrat to protect her life and reputation. 

Lord Montcliffe must marry into money to save his debt-ridden estate, but he doesn't have to like it—or his bewitching future bride. So he's stunned by the feelings stirred up by one scorching kiss! But when Daniel uncovers the truth, can he accept the real Amethyst and help to banish the ghost of her past forever?

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a noble earl in possession of a crumbling patrimony is in need of a wealthy heiress...so step right up, ladies! No worries if you’re from the made-a-fortune-in-trade side of the street because needs must when the devil drives. Apologies to Jane Austen and William Shakespeare for parodying their famous words but they very neatly sum up the premise of Sophia James’s new Penniless Lords series. 

It’s impossible to not think of Mary Balogh’s unforgettable A Christmas Promise while reading Marriage Made in Money; there are many similarities. The heroine’s father is in trade and he trades his money, apparently, to gain his daughter entrée into the aristocratic world. The penniless earl inherited rather than created his onerous debts.

[In romance, that's usually the preferred way of debt...]

Dec 16 2014 3:42pm

Romance News Roundup: Jane Austen, Dane and Hoyt Deals, and More!

It's Tea Time Afternoon Tea bannerWelcome 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.

—Happy birthday, Jane Austen! The Huffington Post ranks the best Austen modernizations, while the Jane Austen Centre declares today is—what else?—Jane Austen Day. (We're on board, of course. We have an all-things-Austen collection and everything.)

—Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher, and Rihanna made a fake sci-fi romance movie trailer for the real movie Annie, and it's pretty hilarious. Would you go see it?

Lauren Dane's first Hurley Brothers book, The Best Kind of Trouble, is on sale in e-book for $1.99 at what looks to be various retailers today, including iBookstoreBarnes and Noble, and Amazon.

Elizabeth Hoyt's Maiden Lane #1, Wicked Intentions, is marked down to $1.99 in e-book for the moment at sites such as AmazonBarnes and Noble, and iBookstore; same goes for Lisa Kleypas's Bow Street book Someone to Watch Over Me (Amazon, iBookstore, and Barnes and Noble, and probably others).

[+ more news this way...]

Dec 16 2014 2:25pm

Happy V-Day!: Virgin Heroines from Kenyon, Quinn, and More!

Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake by Sarah MacLeanHonestly, I’m a sucker for the virgin heroine. When done well, there’s something about the Dance of the Deflower that draws me in and keeps me captive through the night until I have my HEA. Why are virgins so ubiquitous when according to the CDC, 85% of all women have had vaginal intercourse by the age of 24*? By the time we are 30, we virgin femme fatales are almost non-existent. I have my theories why this trope remains one of the most popular and hence I present to you, my completely biased analysis, along with a few of my favorite books that do it so well.

1) We had such an awesome de-virginization process that we love to relive it over and over again.

2) Our first romp on the beach was so terrible it left permanent mental scarring of too much sand in all the wrong places. With these romance novels, we can claim amnesia of our first time and invent a new history of our foray into carnal pleasures.

3) The excitement! Even if our first time felt like lemmings jumping off a cliff, most of us daydreamed about losing it to some person who probably didn’t even know we existed—Yeah, I’m talking to you, Andrew McCarthy (I think I just aged myself)—and what it would be like: the tenderness, the romance, the adrenaline, the anticipation, and finally understanding what the Big O is all about. (I will never think about tires the same again).

[The Big O is a Big Deal...]

Dec 16 2014 1:15pm

Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveals from Rosanne Bittner and Michele Dunaway!

Do Not Forsake Me by Rosanne Bittner and Burning for You by Michele DunawayToday we're thrilled to reveal the covers for Rosanne Bittner and Michele Dunaway. We have not one, but two covers from Rosanne. Her much-loved Outlaw Hearts has a brand new cover—and for good reason because the sequel to Outlaw Hearts, Do Not Forsake Me, will be in our hands in 2015.Until then we have the cover for both books to feast our eyes on. Then, things are heating up in Michele Dunaway's Burning for You when a sexy firefighter asks for the help of a relationship-shy photographer.

[See the covers and learn about the books!]

Dec 16 2014 12:00pm

Read & Win: Leisa Rayven’s Bad Romeo!

Leisa Rayven

Bad Romeo by Leisa Rayven

While performing the greatest love story of all time, they discovered one of their own…

Cassie Taylor was just another acting student with big dreams at her prestigious performing arts college…then she met Ethan Holt. She was the good girl actress. He was the bad boy on campus. But one fated casting choice for Romeo and Juliet changed it all. Like the characters they were playing on stage, Cassie and Ethan’s epic romance seemed destined. Until it ended in tragedy when he shattered her heart.

Now they’ve made it to Broadway where they’re reunited as romantic leads once again—and their passionate scenes force them to confront the heartbreaking lows and pulse-pounding highs of their intense college affair. For Ethan, losing Cassie was his biggest regret—and he’s determined to redeem himself. But for Cassie, even though Ethan was her first and only great love, he hurt her too much to ever be trusted again. The trouble is, working with him again reminds her that people who rub each other the wrong way often make the best sparks. And when it comes to love, sometimes it’s the things that aren’t good for us that are the most irresistible.

Get a sneak peek at Leisa Rayven's Bad Romeo (available December 23, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Read the full excerpt and leave a comment below to be entered for a chance to win a copy of Bad Romeo by Leisa Rayven.*

Westchester, New York
The Diary of Cassandra Taylor
Fourth Week of Classes

Dear Diary,

Today is my birthday.

Yep. Nineteen years of trying to be everything to everyone and ending up as no one to myself.

How the hell did this happen?

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

Dec 16 2014 11:00am

First Look: Larissa Ione’s Revenant (December 16, 2014)

Revenant by Larissa IoneLarissa Ione
Revenant (Demonica)
Grand Central / December 16, 2014 / $8.00 print, $7.99 digital

For five thousand years, Revenant believed he was alone in the world, a fallen angel beyond any redemption. Now he finds he has a twin brother who had all the light and love Revenant was denied. Caught in a tug of war between Heaven and Hell, he must weigh his thirst for revenge against his desire for a mysterious female named Blaspheme-a female whose very origins could deliver him into salvation . . . or destruction.

Blaspheme has a deadly secret: she's the forbidden offspring of an angel and a fallen angel. Hunted by both heavenly and satanic forces, she has survived only by laying low and trusting no one. When Revenant claims he can save them both, how can she possibly believe him? But the powerful angel is persistence incarnate and for Blaspheme, there's no place she can hide in Heaven or Hell where he won't find her . . .

Last year saw a real return to Larissa Ione's popular and super-imaginative Demonica series and a merging with her Lords of Deliverance series, with Reaver, the most powerful angel in Heaven restored to grace as a Radiant, as well as the “good twin.” In a companion novel that continues to show profound effects on the paranormal fate of the world, Revenant is the dark side of the coin, the angel who's equally as powerful as his brother but who's only ever known a life in Hell, the “bad twin.”

[We do love a bad boy...]

Dec 16 2014 9:30am

We’re Not So Different, You and I: Heroines in Sarah MacLean and Christina Lauren

One Good Earl Deserves a Lover by Sarah MacLeanRomance readers have a plethora of options to choose from like, billionaires to regular Joes to dukes, all kind of heroes and heroines are found within the pages of your favorite books. These characters can be found in various genres across romance storylines. Each division has particular attributes that distinguish each of them, whether it is time, characters or setting. While some genres seem to be polar opposites, similarities can be found in even the most unlikely.

Sarah MacLean’s One Good Earl Deserves a Lover and Christina Lauren’s Beautiful Player are examples of such stories. Sarah MacLean writes amazing heroines set in the Regency period. Historical romance can be a hard line for some readers, as sometimes the historic detail can be overwhelming. MacLean has the ability to easily integrate you into the time periods and write stories relevant to all. Christina Lauren is a hilarious duo with witty, independent heroines. Unlike MacLean, their books are contemporary modern novels. Their books are contemporary modern novels.

Sarah MacLean and Christina Lauren have two heroines that blur the lines between these two genres. Each of the heroines are in fields where women do not conform to the norm. Unique heroines, Pippa and Hanna are two characters that have touched a chord. These are two “average” women who are grabbing life by the reins and taking control.

[These ladies aren't pushovers...]

Dec 16 2014 8:40am

Favorite Unexpected Christmas Movie?

There are the obvious choices for best Christmas movies: Love Actually, Miracle on 34th Street, It's a Wonderful Life, A Christmas Story, all the iterations of A Christmas Carol, etc.

And then there are films that happen to take place around Christmas that people cite as Christmas films, like Die Hard, The Thin Man, and Metropolitan

What are your favorite unexpected Christmas movies? 

Dec 15 2014 4:30pm

First Look: Diane Kelly’s Paw and Order (December 30, 2014)

Paw and Order by Diane KellyDiane Kelly
Paw and Order (Paw Enforcement)
St. Martin's Press / December 30, 2014 / $7.99 print, digital

Police officer Megan Luz and her loyal K-9 partner Brigit are back on the beat—and under the gun—when the local rodeo show goes to the dogs…

After capturing the notorious Fort Worth “Tunabomber,” Megan and Brigit are practically celebrities. Which is why the police chief lassoed them into doing rodeo duty —mostly as a public relations stunt for the department. Megan’s not a fan of calf roping, bull riding, or goat milking contests. But when a thief appears to be working the circuit, her trusty K-9 partner starts sniffing for clues…

The culprit is “Robin Hood,” a young Texas golddigger who steals from the rich to give to the poor—namely, herself. With Brigit hot on the trail, Megan has to juggle her on-again off-again reputation in the FWPD with her on-again off-again relationship with sexy bomb-squader Seth Rutledge. This time, Megan is determined to rope in her suspect and her man…before chaos, and/or her trusted furry partner, is unleashed.

There is something very appealing about a woman who sets boundaries—someone who’s not afraid to say you can’t treat me that way or there will be consequences. Both police officer Megan Luz and her K-9 partner, Brigit, are those type of females.

[Girl power!]

Dec 15 2014 3:12pm

Romance News Roundup: Outlander, Bailey, and Stacey Deal Alerts; Gone with the Wind; and More!

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.

—Deal Alerts*: Tessa Bailey's His Risk to Take is discounted (read: free) today at Amazon. Looking for a little holiday flavor? The Season for Love Boxed Set is only $0.99 at Barnes & Noble and Amazon, and features three holiday novellas by Shannon Stacey. (See what Sarah Morgan had to say about one of the novellas, Snowbound with the CEO, in her post about romances that feature snowbound heroes and heroines).

—Missing Outlander? There's a chance to catchup with the books while the show is on hiatus (April can't come soon enough!). The entire series is discounted anywhere from just $0.99 to $4.99. Start with book 1, Outlander for only $2.99 on Amazon, and get book 2, Dragonfly in Amber at Amazon for $0.99.* (Spoilers: Kiersten Hallie Krum weighs in on how the show writers should handle the 20-year gap in the series). As you open presents on Christmas morning, you can pretend Jamie Fraser is curled up next to you as original Outlander scores play over a 90-minute video of the clan's Yule Log burning in the fireplace.

Entertainment Weekly reminded us of some of the many reasons why Rhett Butler and Scarlett O'Hara was the first 'ship for many of us. Gone with the Wind reached 1 million people when it debuted in Atlanta on this day in 1939. Happy 75th Birthday! 

—This Friday, you'll have the opportunity to not only see Downton Abbey's Dan Stevens on-screen again, but as a famous heartthrob, Lancelot! He'll be joining Ben Stiller, Robin Williams, and others in Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb. And Dan is over at Vulture talking about the movie, working with Williams, and what it was like to be a knight in shining armor.

—You might have picked up on the fact that we're big shippers here at Heroes and Heartbreakers. Entertainment Weekly reminds us of some of the Sweetest Shipper Moments of 2014. Agree or Disagree? Let us know!

*Please note that we have no idea how long downpricing or sales will last, so grab these deals while you can.

Dec 15 2014 1:30pm

A Great Miracle: Jewish Heroes and Heroines in Contemporary Romance

December is here! The nights are getting longer, the temperature colder, and Hanukkah is fast approaching. Although there are plenty of traditional options to keep folks warm and happy during those eight nights—like candles, songs, and sufganiyot—there’s also the cozy feeling of curling up on the couch to read a good romance book by the light of the shamash.

As part of this year’s celebration, I went looking for some recent contemporary romances featuring Jewish heroes or heroines and was recommended some fabulous new-to-me authors, Emma Barry and Allison Parr. Both authors write modern, Jewish characters whose personal identities and social lives are, in some part, influenced by their faith.

In Barry’s Private Politics (The Easy Part series), the hero, Liam Nussbaum, identifies as culturally Jewish, but in his thoughts, his conversations with his mother, and later on in his relationship with WASP Alyse Philips, his cultural identity is overtly, specifically discussed in the book, and is a part of the characterization and plot as much as many of the other events that happen in the story. Political blogger Liam is a smart-but-schlubby guy whom nonprofit director Alyse hadn’t really considered before an investigation throws them together. The story is very engaging—suspenseful at times but primarily a romance about confidence, goals, and love. It’s the perfect book for holding in one hand to read while the other forks bites of latkes into your mouth.

[Food+romance novels=Perfection...]

Dec 15 2014 11:00am

What the Valhalla!?: Lost Girl 5x02 Discussion Thread

Lauren, Kenzi, and Dyson in Lost Girl 5x02We'll be doing full recaps for Lost Girl when it airs in the United States on the SyFy channel. Meanwhile, enjoy a quick summary of last night's episode and discuss!

Note: This post contains spoilers of all aired episodes of Lost Girl, including last night's Season 5, Episode 2, “Like Hell, Part 2.”

In Like Hell part 2 Bo bangs her stepmother and walks and talks around Tartarus a lot which last week was Valhalla but I geddit. When you’re filming at the Royal York hotel, you’re gonna milk it for all its worth. Despite walking all over the place, Bo never meets her father YET AGAIN. Instead, Bo is attacked by a pooka goblin, confused by the voices in her head, and ultimately saved by the only woman with a suckier fate than Pandora—Persephone. Their sexy healing times inadvertently conjures some in tandem ghost sex for Doctor Lauren back at Hilton Hovel. Only afterward does Bo find out Persephone is married to her father, Hades. Now that’s keeping it in the family.


Dec 15 2014 9:30am

First Look: Diane Alberts’s Seducing the Princess (December 15, 2014)

Seducing the Princess by Diane AlbertsDiane Alberts
Seducing the Princess (Shillings Agency #3)
Entangled / December 15, 2014 / $0.99 digital

Protecting a princess is not what former marine Gordon Waybrook signed up for when he joined the Shillings Agency. But instead of the spoiled, regal little creature he expects, Isabelle VanGuard is a fiery, sexy-as hell woman who's been denied what she needs for too long. And he's just the man to break through her frozen public facade and give it to her.

When she's with Gordon, all Isabelle can think about is pleasure. Their blistering chemistry is immediate and intense, but volatile. In fact, the only thing they agree on is that their one night together is just that—one night. Even after it becomes more. But tempers and temptation can't disguise reality. Isabelle is a princess, and a hot, hard, and tattooed bodyguard isn't the Prince Charming her country expects...even if he's exactly what she needs. 

Seducing the Princess lets us revel in that modern day fairytale love affair between royalty and a commoner with some fun twists. I've read countless books that utilize this trope where our stately royal is male, used to being in control, and can sweep an unassuming ordinary girl off her feet with his riches and status. But with this installment of the Shillings Agency, it's our heroine who is the royal. Moreover, the balance of power illustrated between our hero and heroine is not stereotypically dominated by the male. Rather, Gordon and Isabelle have more of a mutual give and take as their relationship develops. Diane Alberts doesn't stray too far from our beloved trope as we see the theme of forbidden love woven through the text. This forces both the characters and us readers to work for our HEA. Alberts weaves a narrative that offers up an exchange of fun banter and introspection with our equally headstrong lovers.


Dec 15 2014 8:10am

What Do You Do When You Just Don’t Feel Like Reading?

Clark Gable reading Gone With the WindYou probably just read the headline and thought, “there's never a time I don't feel like reading!” And maybe not, but every once in a while, you just don't feel like it, for no particular reason. It's not a reading slump, or that you're sick or too stressed; it's just—you're not in the mood for reading at that moment.

What do you do when you just don't feel like reading? 

(Added fun tidbit: Gone with the Wind debuted on this day in 1939).

Dec 14 2014 3:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Sherlock Holmes and John Watson (JohnLock)

I love Sherlock Holmes. I will take him in every iteration—BBC's modernization with Benedict Cumberbatch, Robert Downey Jr. in a historical action version, and Johnny Lee Miller in Elementary, or The Great Moust Detective. What I have loved even more is tracking the allusions to a relationship that is slightly more domestic and less platonic between Holmes and his faithful friend, John Watson.

In canon, there are hints that this domestic duo, were a little bit more than just roommates and partners in crime...partners in life maybe?

BBC's Sherlock has been a particular favorite of mine—I'm a big Doctor Who fan and I feel Stephen Moffat, the writer of both, brings intelligence and hijinx to both. In Sherlock, the hints of a relationship are a lot more overt than in more historical adaptations. Sherlock and Watson, no matter what iteration we find them in, do tend to act more like an old married couple than two male roommates/crime fighters.

So this week's Shipping Sunday is going to focus on that tension between these two and all the times that Sherlock and Watson acted or were mistaken for a couple. #SecretlyMarried anyone?

Dec 14 2014 1:00pm

Angel in Armani: Exclusive Excerpt

Melanie Scott

Angel in Armani by Melanie Scott


Sara Charles is striking out on her own. With her dad out of commission, Charles Air has only one helicopter left—and only Sara to fly charters. With the family business in jeopardy, Sara needs all the clients she can get and the newest one is New York Saints team surgeon, Lucas Angelo. When an unexpected flirtation escalates into a night of pure blind passion, Sara is in agony over what she believes was extremely poor judgment on her part. She wants nothing more than to avoid Lucas. And keep her business her business. But she needs him—in more ways than one.


But there is a catch: Lucas also needs Sara. Spring training is upon him, and his schedule is madness. So he asks Sara to be his personal pilot. It’s an offer she can’t refuse. She intends to keep him at arm’s length—especially when she discovers just what different lives they have. Little does Sara know that, for Lucas, the only thing more important than business is pleasure. He only plays to win. And he intends to hit it out of the park…

Get a sneak peek of Melanie Scott's Angel in Armani (available December 30, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of Chapters 1 & 2.

Chapter 1

It was like having a tiger in the back of the helicopter.

The knowledge of something big and dangerous and ruthless riding behind her. Something that could squish you like a bug and not blink a big golden eye.

Of course, the man behind her had blue eyes, not golden ones. Very blue.

So maybe a tiger wasn’t the right metaphor. Maybe—

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

Dec 14 2014 11:00am

First Look: Annie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner’s This Shattered World (December 23, 2014)

This Shattered World by Amie Kaufman and Meagan SpoonerAmie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner
This Shattered World (Starbound #2)
Disney Hyperion / December 23, 2014 / $17.99 print, $9.99 digital

Jubilee Chase and Flynn Cormac should never have met.

Lee is captain of the forces sent to Avon to crush the terraformed planet's rebellious colonists, but she has her own reasons for hating the insurgents.

Rebellion is in Flynn's blood. His sister died in the original uprising against the powerful corporate conglomerate that rules Avon with an iron fist. These corporations make their fortune by terraforming uninhabitable planets across the universe and recruiting colonists to make the planets livable, with the promise of a better life for their children. But they never fulfilled their promise on Avon, and decades later, Flynn is leading the rebellion.

Desperate for any advantage against the military occupying his home, Flynn does the only thing that makes sense when he and Lee cross paths: he returns to base with her as his prisoner. But as his fellow rebels prepare to execute this tough-talking girl with nerves of steel, Flynn makes another choice that will change him forever. He and Lee escape base together, caught between two sides in a senseless war.

Johnse Hatfield and Roseanna McCoy. Romeo and Juliet. Tony and Maria from West Side Story. Rose and Jack from Titanic. Writers have adored the star-crossed lovers trope since, well, since we’ve been telling tales. Evidence of this motif goes back as far as A.D. 8, when Ovid’s Metamorphoses was published, including the fable of Pyramus and Thisbe, lovers forbidden to wed because of their parents’ rivalry. Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner revise this popular theme in their latest novel, the second book in their Starbound series.

[Oooh, let's get started then...]

Dec 13 2014 1:00pm

Surviving DrOutlander: Bridging the Gap of 20 Years

The following post includes spoilers for the Outlander series. Like big, honking ones. No, seriously. Proceed at your own risk.

I’ll admit, I’m reaching deep to get through the long, dark days between the end of Outlander S1 part one this October and the debut of part two on STARZ network April 4, 2015. I came this close to adding Jamie’s eye-sexxing as my mobile wallpaper talisman to make it through. Here at Heroes and Heartbreakers, we’re pushing through this six-month Droughtlander on a steady diet of nekkid JAMMF GIFs and banked episodes on our DVRs.

Why—WHY—must they torture us so?!

Looking ahead, this may be a small drop in the Long Wait Pond. It’s already been announced that Outlander the television series plans to film one season for each book in the Outlander saga. This means season two will be based on Dragonfly in Amber (DIA) and season three on Voyager. Anyone who has read these two books knows that Jamie and Claire are separated at the end of DIA in a pretty freaking definitive way. They remain apart for the first third of Voyager as they (unknowingly) wait 20 years on either side of a 200-year divide to be reunited.

So the question has to be asked: how will Outlander the series handle their 20-year separation?

[I have a few ideas...]

Dec 12 2014 4:30pm

Friday Beefcake: Unusual Historical Heroes from Vikings, Outlander, Marco Polo, and More!

Clive Standen in VikingsYou guys know we love a good unusual historical—we could have a duke any day, but a viking? Or a Highlander? What about a late-Victorian era detective, or a few gangsters from post-WWI England? Yeah, that's the stuff of dreams! While we offer you monthly books set in unusual venues with our Not-Your-Usual Historicals Shopping List, we decided to take it to the screen and present our favorite beefcake who portray men from all sorts of times and places—even if they aren't always hero material.

[It's like time travel without a TARDIS...]