<i>Follow Me Into Darkness</i>: Excerpt Follow Me Into Darkness: Excerpt Santino Hassell, Roan Parrish, J.R. Gray, J.C. Lillis and Kris Ripper <i>To Catch a Rake</i>: Exclusive Excerpt To Catch a Rake: Exclusive Excerpt Sally Orr “If not a touch, perhaps a pleasing stroke in just the right place?” <i>Wicked Sexy Liar</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Wicked Sexy Liar: Exclusive Excerpt Christina Lauren "Don’t accidentally have sex with Luke." <i>A Gentleman's Game</i>: Exclusive Excerpt A Gentleman's Game: Exclusive Excerpt Theresa Romain "He chose her now, and she chose him."
From The Blog
February 5, 2016
Friday Beefcake: Hot Dudes Coloring Book!
Team H & H
February 5, 2016
Ready to Play: Football Highlights
Lucy Dosch
February 5, 2016
Emma Chase’s Appealed
Tiffany Tyer
February 3, 2016
Jane Ashford's Heir to the Duke: No Longer Cinderella
Janet Webb
January 29, 2016
Finding What’s Real in Kathleen Eagle’s Carved in Stone
willaful
Wed
Feb 3 2016 9:30am

Ballroom Battlefield: Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

Spoiler warning! This post contains spoilers on both the book and the movie, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. 

When I first saw the novel Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, I couldn’t quite believe my eyes. Full disclosure, I wasn’t a fan of the original Pride and Prejudice so I didn’t have any desire to watch this film and/or read the book. However, I can’t say no to FREE so when I received free passes I said, “Why not?” Fast forward to today and I’ve now seen this movie not once, but twice! I actually loved it. It’s nothing like what I expected and I think it can cater to a wide audience. Putting a zombie spin on the classic story really did take it to new heights, but what really pushed the movie to a greater edge were the actors.

Beware, spoilers ahead.

[We are all fools in love or zombies ...]

Wed
Feb 3 2016 8:07am

When Casting Is Perfect...?

It seems like that would never happen... A perfect casting?

However, whilst eavesdropping on Twitter, I saw a few people chime in that, after seeing the shots of Emilia Clarke for the adaptation of Jojo Moyes' Me Before You, the casting was pretty perfect. 

Have you ever run across a casting that was perfect? 

Tue
Feb 2 2016 5:30pm

First Look: C.S. Pacat’s Kings Rising (February 2, 2016)

Kings Rising BY C.S. Pacat

C.S. Pacat
Kings Rising (Captive Prince #3)
Berkley / February 2, 2016 / $12.99 print, $9.99 digital

Damianos of Akielos has returned.

 His identity now revealed, Damen must face his master Prince Laurent as Damianos of Akielos, the man Laurent has sworn to kill.

On the brink of a momentous battle, the future of both their countries hangs in the balance. In the south, Kastor's forces are massing. In the north, the Regent's armies are mobilising for war. Damen's only hope of reclaiming his throne is to fight together with Laurent against their usurpers.

Forced into an uneasy alliance the two princes journey deep into Akielos, where they face their most dangerous opposition yet. But even if the fragile trust they have built survives the revelation of Damen's identity—can it stand against the Regents final, deadly play for the throne?

The wait is finally over! The third and final (?) installment of C. S. Pacat’s tormented, slow-building relationship between Damianos of Akielos and Laurent of Vere is here, and in my opinion Kings Rising is well worth every ounce of patience readers have had to muster. Damen the captive prince is captive no longer, and he’s ready for a fight. But what of Laurent, his former captor? Now that he’s given himself to Damen physically, will they get their happy ending?

Back in June of 2013, I speculated on the contents of volume 3.

[Now it's here and no more speculations ...]

Tue
Feb 2 2016 4:30pm
Excerpt

To Catch a Rake: Exclusive Excerpt

Sally Orr

To Catch a Rake by Sally Orr

No Good Rake Goes Unpunished

When George Drexel used his vast experience with women to write and publish The Rake's Handbook: Including Field Guide, little did he realize the havoc it would cause. Now years later, the rumor of a second edition has London's naughtiest widows pounding on his door, begging to be included. But George has given up his roguish ways and wants nothing more than to be left alone with his architectural pursuits...until beautiful Meta Russell tempts him from his work and leaves him contemplating an altogether different sort of plan.

The handbook may be years out of print, but it still has the power to ruin lives. Desperate to save her sister-whose inclusion has left her jilted-Meta tracks down the rake responsible, only to find a man who steals her breath and leaves her reeling. Banding together to put things to rights, George and Meta find themselves drawn inexorably together...but can Meta truly trust her heart to a man who wrote the book on being a rake?

Get a sneak peek at Sally Orr's To Catch a Rake (available February 2, 2016) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

She recognized that this was an opportune time to appeal to his good will. “I was hoping you would join me, and together we can pay a call upon James. First, your very appearance will show him that you are a gentleman and your word is to be trusted. Then you can explain to him that your book is fiction and that all of London knows this fact. No misunderstanding could ever come about. Once the truth is placed before James by the author himself, he could no longer willfully believe anyone should think those initials were Lily’s. Moreover, a scheme may be hatched between us to ensure the public could never believe the initials were hers. I have great hopes this will come to pass, and James will resume his addresses soon.”

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

Tue
Feb 2 2016 3:40pm

Romance News: Discover Amelia Peabody and Bridgerton Deals!

Welcome to H&H's 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.

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

Deal Alerts

Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth PetersElizabeth Peters' first Amelia Peabody Mystery, Crocodile on the Sandbank, is marked down to $1.99 (regularly $9.99) in e-book today at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, and more.* In a 2012 article on Archaeology and Adventure Romances, Amber McMichael teases that this mystery novel definitely pulls double duty as a romance when “a newly wealthy spinster travels to Egypt to meet a surly (but quite handsome) Egyptologist.”

Julia Quinn's The Duke and I, the book that launched the beloved Bridgertons series, is on sale for $1.99 in e-book this week at iBookstore, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc. as part of the “8 Weeks of Bridgertons” festivities leading up to Because of Miss Bridgerton's release.* Janga chose the Bridgertons as one of her 5 favorite families in historical romance.

Katie MacAlister's paranormal romance Dragon Fall, Book 1 in the Dragon Fall series, is on sale for $2.99 in e-book for the moment at Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, Amazon, etc.* As JohnJacobson wrote in his First Look at Dragon Fall, it's a “funny, fast-paced start to a new dragon series for MacAlister.”

[+The Me Before You movie poster!...]

Tue
Feb 2 2016 2:00pm

First Look: Christina Lauren’s Wicked Sexy Liar (February 2, 2016)

Wicked Sexy Liar by Christina Lauren

Christina Lauren
Wicked Sexy Liar (Wild Seasons #4)
Gallery / February 2, 2016 / $16.00 print, $7.99 digital

When three college besties meet three hot guys in Vegas, anything can—and does—happen. Book Four in the New York Times Wild Seasons series that began with Sweet Filthy Boy (the Romantic Times book of the year that Sylvia Day called “a sexy, sweet treasure of a story”), Dirty Rowdy Thing, and Dark Wild Night.

For two people ambivalent about dating and love, they sure get naked around each other an awful lot . . .

London Hughes is very content to surf daily, tend bar, hang out with her group of friends, and slowly orient herself in the years after college. Everything’s going great and according to the non-plan.

But when a wave knocks her for a loop one morning, then Luke Sutter’s flirtatious smile knocks her for another that evening, she veers slightly off course…and into his path. Sure, he’s a total player, but theWhy not—it’s only one night is a persistent voice in her ear.

For his part, Luke’s been on hookup autopilot for so long that he rarely ever pauses to consider what he’s doing. But after an amazing time with London, he realizes that he hasn’t been moving on from a devastating heartbreak so much as he’s been drifting to wherever—and whomever—the current takes him. With London he wants more.

Every relationship involves two people…plus their pasts. And as much as she enjoys her fling with Luke, when London learns about his past—more specifically, who’s in it—everything becomes the brand of complicated she strives to avoid. It’s up to Luke then to change some things in order to try and ensure he’s not something she’ll outright avoid as well.

There is no shortage of entertainment with Christina Lauren’s latest installment of the Wild Seasons series, Wicked Sexy Liar. Dare I say it? London and Luke, or L², as I’ll affectionately call them, just might be my favorite couple of the series thus far – sorry, LOliver! Why? Because London and Luke both have commitment issues manifested from legitimate past experiences, but together, they have mad chemistry, aren’t afraid to dish the smackdowns (or receive them, in Luke’s case), and can laugh at themselves, while finally being honest with why they’ve both been running from relationships for so long.

[It's a Wild Seasons thing ...]

Tue
Feb 2 2016 1:30pm

Happy E-Book Birthday to Shiloh Walker’s H&H Serial Thirty Nights with a Dirty Boy!

Thirty Nights with a Dirty Boy by Shiloh Walker

Today is a big release day across the genre, but we're especially excited here at H&H, because today we're celebrating the publication of Shiloh Walker's three-part serial Thirty Nights with a Dirty Boy, part of the Heroes and Heartbreakers Original Fiction program, in e-book!

H&H community members were the first to read our delectable three-part serial, featuring lady billionaire Ella and her (not so) temporary lover Sean, back in December, and while registered members still can read the serial on the H&H site, today you can also snag copies for your keeper shelf!

Learn more about or order a copy of Thirty Nights with a Dirty Boy, Part 1, by Shiloh Walker:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at B&N

Buy at iTunes

 

 

Learn more about or order a copy of Thirty Nights with a Dirty Boy, Part 2, by Shiloh Walker:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at B&N

Buy at iTunes

 

 

Learn more about or order a copy of Thirty Nights with a Dirty Boy, Part 3, by Shiloh Walker:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at B&N

Buy at iTunes

 

 

Tue
Feb 2 2016 12:00pm

“Supergirl Loves You”: Supergirl 1x12 Karolsen Heart-to-Heart

TV Recap: Supergirl 1x12

Show/Episode: Supergirl Season 1, Episode 12, “Bizarro”
Ship(s): Kara/James (Karolsen)

TV Recap: Supergirl 1x12 Karolsen Captain's Log

Well, fellow shippers, after several episodes that relegated Karolsen to the back burner, we were treated to an episode that included several scenes of James and Kara together, more sniping and bonding between the SuperBros James and Winn, a quick wrap-up to the side romance we worried may have gotten in the way of Karolsen and, best of all, a declarations of love!  However, since this was the Bizarro episode, things did not happen the way we may have wanted them to.  Still though, it was a big step in the right direction for James and Kara, even if they don’t exactly know it yet.

The main story this week involved the Supergirl doppleganger we all, Kara included, glimpsed at the end of last week’s episode.  It turns out Maxwell Lord has been acquiring comatose Jane Doe’s and experimenting  on them, using Kara’s DNA that Alex inadvertently gave him access to, in an attempt to create a Supergirl of his own.  Bizarro Supergirl, as Cat Grant names her, has the same strength as Kara, along with opposing powers (ex: she breathes fire while Kara breathes cold air) and has been brainwashed to hate Kara.  In their first confrontation, both Kara and Bizarro see more of each other than an enemy.  In their second confrontation, Bizarro is hit with Kryptonite, which disfigures and enrages her. Bizarro, with Maxwell Lord’s prompting, decides to hurt Kara by going after the person she loves. We are led to believe she’s going to go after Alex but, surprise surprise, she kidnaps James instead!

[James and Kara making big steps ...]

Tue
Feb 2 2016 10:00am

First Look: Kerrigan Byrne’s The Hunter (February 2, 2016)

The Hunter by Kerrigan Byrne

Kerrigan Byrne
The Hunter (To Tempt a Highlander #2)
St. Martin's Press / February 2, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

A scandalous proposal...

Christopher Argent lives in the shadows as the empire's most elite assassin. Emotion is something he tossed away years ago, making him one of the most clear-eyed, cold-hearted, wealthiest, and therefore untouchable men in London. But when his latest target turns out to be London's own darling, Millicent LeCour, Christopher's whole world is turned upside down. Overwhelmed by her stunning combination of seduction and innocence, Christopher cannot complete the mission. She has made him feel again. Now, he will do anything to save her life, even if it means risking his own...

A perilous passion...

When Millie learns what Christopher was hired to do, she is torn between the fear in her heart and the fire in her soul. Putting herself in this notorious hunter's arms may be her only path to safety—even if doing so could be the deadliest mistake she's ever made. But how can she resist him? As the heat between her and Christopher burns out of control, danger lurks in the shadows. Is their desire worth the risk? Only the enemy knows what fate has in store...

This is only her second book, but Kerrigan Byrne is quickly becoming a new favorite with me. I’m going to have to learn to stop reading her books in the break room at work, because it’s uncomfortable to explain the crying. Granted, my co-workers are all librarians so you’d think they’d at least understand, but I do get weird looks. 

[An irresistible series ...]

Tue
Sep 15 2015 10:00am

Lost Girl 5x10 Recap and SPOILER Thread: Succubus Entrapment

Lost Girl 5x10 Bo Dennis Has a Plan

Editor's Note (2/2/16): This article is being repromoted in honor of Lost Girl 5x10, which aired last night on SyFy in the U.S.

Note: This post contains spoilers of all aired episodes of Lost Girl, including for Season 5, Episode 10, “Like Father, Like Daughter," which aired last night on Showcase in Canada. We'll re-share this Bo/Dyson-centric recap when the episode airs on SyFy in the U.S. in early 2016!

Surprisingly, we do not take off from where we ended last week with Bo and a bloodied Doctor Lauren swapping chi in the middle of the street. As you do. Instead, Bo and Dyson are staking out the Mount Olympus penthouse building in an attempt to get a bead on Zee. Is that Dyson’s car or a cop one? They gab about the state of her father, ya know, Hades, the god of the Underworld, who’s currently locked up in the most secure Fae prison around: the clinic. Hang on. Doesn’t Trick have a prison under the lair where he keeps the crazed Fae who don’t survive their YDawnings? Is there a reason Hades can’t take up residency there rather than a cushy lounge in the doc’s clinic? Hmmm?

Speak of the devil, Doctor Lauren rings up Bo. Bo: “How’s my birth father.” Doctor Lauren: “Still here. Locked up. Polite.” Bo preens about having saved the doc the night before who, she adds, doesn’t need to thank her. But Doctor Lauren is more interested in the fact that the chi suck felt weird. Bo notes she wasn’t in control of it but everything is pretty weird right now. After they disconnect, the doc says she thinks she’s the one who was being the succubus.

[Flash back to that time Bo did what? ]

Tue
Feb 2 2016 9:04am

“This Is How I Like My Mulder”: The X-Files 10x03 Mulder/Scully Romance (MSR) Heart-to-Heart

Mulder and Scully at an autopsy in The X-Files Season 10, episode 3Eight years after The X-Files: I Want to Believe hit theaters and THIRTEEN years after the series finale aired on television, FBI special agents Fox Mulder (David Duchovny) and Dana Scully (Gillian Anderson) are back for a six-episode Season 10 of The X-Files. Suffice to say, I am a WRECK. Won't you join me, fellow Mulder/Scully shippers—you, who coined the phrase “shipping” in the first place—in breaking down each new slice of canon we are gifted? Tonight, following “My Struggle: Part I” and “Founder's Mutation,” we hit the halfway mark of the season (nooooo!!) with 10x03, “Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster,” a comedic episode featuring another monster of the week!

Is The X-Files trying to kill us, or what?! One week it's soul-destroying angst, the next it's feel-good meta.

That's right: Even as the show continues to explore serious issues, such as Mulder and Scully's conflicting feelings about being back at the FBI and various other life choices (Williaaaammmm), “Mulder and Scully Meet the Were-Monster” presents some remarkably comforting and even downright hilarious callbacks to the original series, as well as more proof that Mulder and Scully are right back where they belong—and, wonder of wonders—happily so.

We depend on Fox Mulder to be the guy who wants to believe, and normally there's no theory too out there for him, but at the top of the hour, he's having a bit of a crisis of faith that Scully is determined to see him through by balancing his lower energy out with her own increased enthusiasm. As is always true, when Mulder falters, Scully is right there to back him up, though when my roommate wandered into the room, she asked, “Did Mulder and Scully switch bodies or something?” And...well...she's not wrong. The two have swapped skeptic and believer badges before, but this may be the most delightful time yet.

[Prepare to laugh, and ponder the meaning of life, and squee...]

Tue
Feb 2 2016 8:11am

What Book Would You Want to Be “Stuck” In?

Today is Groundhog Day and while, at the time of this posting, we don't yet know if Punxsutawney Phil will give us six more weeks of winter, or not, we know of one way to heat up the cold months ahead of us—romance!

However, in the great tradition of the Bill Murray classic, what if you were stuck in one of your favorite romances, to experience it over and over again every day. 

What romance would you want that to be? Why? Let us know in the comments!

Mon
Feb 1 2016 4:30pm

First Look: Rachel Grant’s Cold Evidence (February 2, 2016)

Cold Evidence by Rachel Grant

Rachel Grant
Cold Evidence (Evidence #6)
Janus Publishing / February 2, 2016 / $3.99 digital

The frigid waters of the Pacific Northwest are about to get hot… 

The only thing Navy underwater archaeologist Undine Gray fears more than facing former SEAL Luke Sevick is never scuba diving again. But when a dive on a Cold War-era US Navy submarine ends with an accidental explosion, she’s terrified of going into the deep, forcing her to beg the most experienced diver she knows to take her back to the bottom of the cold Salish Sea. 

Luke wants nothing to do with the woman who destroyed his career a dozen years ago but finds it impossible to turn his back on her plea. Caught off guard by an attraction he doesn’t want to feel, he’s eager to be done with this mission of mercy. But when they dive on the wreck, he only gets sucked in deeper. Someone has been digging on the Navy sub…and it appears the explosion that almost killed Undine was no accident. 

To find the truth, Undine must navigate murky waters and the unexpectedly hot undercurrents swirling between her and Luke. Worse, divers are searching for something lost in US waters during the Cold War, and they’ll do anything to keep Luke and Undine from finding it first.

I’ve long been a fan of Rachel Grant’s romantic suspense novels. And while I consider rich settings, exciting suspense and cool science to be her hallmarks, one underlying truth really stuck out in the latest installment of her Evidence series: Rachel Grant is a fabulous storyteller.

Her pacing is spot-on. It’s easy to connect with her (very human) characters. There’s also a satisfying gender equality in her stories, whereby neither hero nor heroine are blameless, both are equally intelligent, and both exhibit strength and vulnerability.

[Taking another stab at this love thing ...]

Mon
Feb 1 2016 3:54pm

Romance News: Dianne Duvall & Gina Maxwell Deals!

Welcome to H&H's 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.

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

Deal Alerts

Shadows Strike by Dianne DuvallDianne Duvall's sixth Immortal Guardians paranormal romance, Shadows Strike, is on sale for $1.99 (regularly $7.99) in e-book at Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, Amazon, etc.* After reading, be sure to drop by Lucy Dosch's Immortal Guardians fantasy casting post—do you agree with her picks or would you cast different actors in the roles?

Gina Maxwell's contemporary What Happens in Vegas story Tempting Her Best Friend is currently marked down to $.99 (from $2.99) in e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, etc.* Arrow powercouple Oliver and Felicity reportedly inspired the Dillon/Alyssa relationship in Tempting Her Best Friend, and Marilyn Porter has all the details.

Tasty Morsels

Want exclusive content from your favorite authors? Make sure you're signed up for the weekly H&H newsletter. In the next couple months, Sylvain Reynard, Anne Calhoun, Patricia Briggs, Anne Bishop, and more will be featured in the Author Spotlight available ONLY for subscribers!

[+What's the sexiest book you've ever read?...]

Mon
Feb 1 2016 12:00pm
Excerpt

Wicked Sexy Liar: Exclusive Excerpt

Christina Lauren

Wicked Sexy Liar by Christina Lauren

For two people ambivalent about dating and love, they sure get naked around each other an awful lot...

London Hughes is very content to surf daily, tend bar, hang out with her group of friends, and slowly orient herself in the years after college. Everything’s going great and according to the non-plan.

But when a wave knocks her for a loop one morning, then Luke Sutter’s flirtatious smile knocks her for another that evening, she veers slightly off course…and into his path. Sure, he’s a total player, but the Why not—it’s only one night is a persistent voice in her ear.

For his part, Luke’s been on hookup autopilot for so long that he rarely ever pauses to consider what he’s doing. But after an amazing time with London, he realizes that he hasn’t been moving on from a devastating heartbreak so much as he’s been drifting to wherever—and whomever—the current takes him. With London he wants more.

Every relationship involves two people…plus their pasts. And as much as she enjoys her fling with Luke, when London learns about his past—more specifically, who’s in it—everything becomes the brand of complicated she strives to avoid. It’s up to Luke then to change some things in order to try and ensure he’s not something she’ll outright avoid as well.

Get a sneak peek at Christina Lauren's Wicked Sexy Liar (available February  2, 2016) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

THE PLAN IS to meet Luke at Tourmaline Surf Park at two. Any other day this would sound like a suicide mission, but knowing it’s going to be packed gives me a small measure of comfort: maybe with a crowd of people around I won’t do anything stupid. I’ve gone so far as to make a list of goals for the day:

1. Don’t let Luke drown.

2. Don’t ogle Luke in his board shorts.

3. Don’t accidentally have sex with Luke.

I’m definitely going to focus on goals one and three. The only way to get to Tourmaline is by a road that winds down from La Jolla Boulevard and empties into the parking lot. It’s almost always crowded and I’m about to give up and park on the street outside, when on my second pass I spot someone leaving. I put on my blinker to thwart off any would-be thieves, and pull in as soon as it’s open.

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

Mon
Feb 1 2016 1:30pm

First Look: J.D. Robb’s Brotherhood in Death (February 2, 2016)

Brotherhood in Death by J.D. Robb

J.D. Robb
Brotherhood in Death (In Death #42)
Berkley / February 2, 2016 / $28.00 print, $13.99 digital

The new novel featuring homicide detective Eve Dallas from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Devoted in Death.

Sometimes brotherhood can be another word for conspiracy. . . 

Dennis Mira just had two unpleasant surprises. First he learned that his cousin Edward was secretly meeting with a real estate agent about their late grandfather’s magnificent West Village brownstone, despite the promise they both made to keep it in the family. Then, when he went to the house to confront Edward about it, he got a blunt object to the back of the head.

Luckily Dennis is married to Charlotte Mira, the NYPSD’s top profiler and a good friend of Lieutenant Eve Dallas. When the two arrive on the scene, he explains that the last thing he saw was Edward in a chair, bruised and bloody. When he came to, his cousin was gone. With the mess cleaned up and the security disks removed, there’s nothing left behind but a few traces for forensics to analyze. 

As a former lawyer, judge, and senator, Edward Mira mingled with the elite and crossed paths with criminals, making enemies on a regular basis. Like so many politicians, he also made some very close friends behind closed—and locked—doors. But a badge and a billionaire husband can get you into places others can’t go, and Eve intends to shine some light on the dirty deals and dark motives behind the disappearance of a powerful man, the family discord over a multimillion-dollar piece of real estate . . . and a new case that no one saw coming.

The latest J.D. Robb novel brings to the forefront the idea of brotherhood.  Brotherhood makes you think of relationships and the way they change and develop over time. Eve Dallas was kept locked away from the world by her abusive father and eventually made it into the hands of a heartless system.  She wanted nothing more from life than to become a police officer, earn her badge and eventually her Captain’s bars.  The only brotherhood or connection she ever dreamed of was with the Brotherhood of the NYPSD.  Was it luck or fate which provided Eve with so much more?

[The true meaning of the Brotherhood ...]

Mon
Feb 1 2016 9:30am

First Look: Virginia Kantra’s Carolina Dreaming (February 2, 2016)

Carolina Dreaming by Virginia Kantra

Virginia Kantra
Carolina Dreaming (Dare Island #5)
Berkley / February 2, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

After escaping a disastrous marriage, bakery owner Jane Clark has convinced herself that she has everything she needs—her precious son, a thriving business, and a roof over her head. But the arrival of a handsome stranger on the island shows her exactly what she’s been missing...   

The only home Gabe Murphy ever had was the Marine Corps. He's working hard to rebuild his life. It will take a special place, and a special woman, to make him want to stay.   

Now Gabe is determined to prove that he's worthy of Jane’s trust—and her love. But when her past reappears, that trust will be tested, and Jane and Gabe will have to fight hard to hold onto their love and make their dreams a reality...

We all know that falling in love is chancy. When it doesn’t work out, can it lead to heartbreak, self-esteem issues, social isolation and depression. But when we do find the right person, it can be a magical experience. There is now a person in our corner all the time. A person to share our burdens and joys. A cheerleader that inspires us, and of course a shoulder to lean on. And because of this, we become better people. Virginia Kantra’s new novel Carolina Dreaming is all about that magic.

[Still dreaming with this small town romance ...]

Mon
Feb 1 2016 8:22am

What Is Your Most Anticipated Read This Month?

Rarely do we get to start off a new week and a new month on the same day, it seems, so in honor of such serendipity, let's get the week started off right! 

February is jam-packed with new releases, on both the indie and traditionally published side. What is your most antipated book of this month? Will you get to pick it up tomorrow, or have to wait until later in the month?

Let us know in the comments!

Mon
Oct 19 2015 9:57am

Downton Abbey 6x05 Recap: When Unpleasantness Visits Downton

Edith in Downton Abbey Season 6, episode 5Editor's Note (1/31/16): This article is being repromoted in honor of Downton Abbey 6x05, airing tonight on PBS in the U.S.

Welcome back to Downton Abbey and what's sure to be another (final, sob!) year of delicious upstairs/downstairs drama. Come, let's see what Series 6 has in store for our beloved Crawley family, shall we?

Note for U.S. Viewers: Downton Abbey returns to PBS for Season 6 on January 3, 2016. 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 6, Episode 5. Enjoy!

I’m going to call this week’s episode “When Unpleasantness Visits Downton.” Everything about the show was about some sort of unpleasantness, with the exception of three teeny tiny moments. I’m going to recap the episode a bit out of order since there weren’t many connecting storylines.

The first bit of unpleasantness was the whole business with Mr. Mason moving into the Drewes' farm. That is, of course, not necessarily a bad thing in and of itself, but I’m so disappointed with the way the poor Drewe family was ushered out that I simply can’t feel happy about kindly Mr. Mason living within a “20-minute walk” of the big house. Anyway, Mrs. Patmore suggests going down to help him get settled, and Daisy and, surprisingly, Andy, follow along. While they’re all gathered around, Mary and Tom (who are on their way to see Henry Talbot “look” at the racing car–more on that later), stop by, ostensibly to wish Mr. Mason luck, but really to make sure that he is able to care for the pigs given his feeble old age. Before Mr. Mason has a chance to say anything, Andy jumps in and tells everyone that he and Mr. Mason had chatted about it and he was going to stop by to help with the heavy lifting (so to speak) whenever needed. Keep in mind, he’s planning on doing this during his “breaks” at the house. Yes, let’s not talk about how unrealistic that would be.

[Give us some good news, show...]

Sun
Jan 31 2016 2:00pm

Beginnings and Transition: Women’s Fiction Best Bets for January 2016

Readers of Broken Wheel by Katarina Bivald

Per Wikipedia in ancient Roman religion and myth, Janus is the god of beginnings and transitions, and thereby of gates, doors, doorways, passages and endings. He is usually depicted as having two faces, since he looks to the future and to the past as do the books from this month’s selection.

There is something here for everyone—lighthearted to serious; whimsical to sardonic; exploration of love and the true meaning of friendship. This month the locales are quite diverse too —from small town Iowa, Hong Kong, and the U.K. to just mention a few.  Of course there is always a reason to stockpile books, but don't be caught without something to read on your next snowday!

Readers of Broken Wheel by Katarina Bivald 

A debut novel to charm all readers, that shows beyond all doubt that it's books, along with love, that make the world go round.

It all began with a correspondence between two quite different women: 28-year-old Sara from Haninge, Sweden, and 65-year-old Amy from the small town of Broken Wheel, Iowa. After years of exchanging books, letters and thoughts on the meaning of literature and life, Sara, mousy, disheveled, who has never been anywhere in her life—has really lived only for her work in a beloved bookshop, which has just closed its doors for the last time—bravely decides to accept her unknown friend's invitation to visit. But when she arrives, she finds her house empty, the funeral guests just heading home...

Sara finds herself alone. And what choice do the inhabitants of Broken Wheel have but to take care of their bewildered tourist? And what choice does Sara have, faced with a town where nobody reads and her desire to honour her friend, but to set up the perfect bookshop with all the books she and Amy shared—from Yann Martel's Life of Pi to Iris Murdoch and Jo Nesbo, to Bridget Jones and Doug Coupland's All Families Are Psychotic to Little House on the Prairie? And then watch as the townsfolk are, one by one, transformed in unexpected ways. . .

In the glorious tradition of 84 Charing Cross Road, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Café, Will Schwalbe's The End of Your Life Book Club, Jane Austen, and movies such as You've Got Mail and Love Actually, The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend is a big-hearted, witty book about books, friendship, love—and always being open to the unexpected.

Strengths: Whimsical exploration of the have and have-nots; Quirky small-town characters; Uplifting ending
Measure of Love: Teaspoon         
Introspection Level: low
Thoughts: A charming story of how books open the door to new friendships and new possibilities. Booklovers will see themselves in Sara as she tries to convince other to read

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