<i>Lawless in Leather</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Lawless in Leather: Exclusive Excerpt Melanie Scott "He took a deep breath, and more of her perfume snuck into his brain." <i>Way of the Warrior</i>: Excerpt Way of the Warrior: Excerpt Suzanne Brockmann "He was great with kids, women fainted when they met him and…" <i>The Mistake</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Mistake: Exclusive Excerpt Elle Kennedy "He lightly strokes my cheekbone and I have to stop myself from purring like an affection-starved cat." <i>The Harlot Countess</i>: Excerpt The Harlot Countess: Excerpt Joanna Shupe "He wanted to feel her, to hold her... to run his tongue over the smooth knob of her ankle."
From The Blog
April 27, 2015
Standout Moments in Romance Novels
Sara Jane Stone
April 23, 2015
Why Bruce/Natasha Should Be Your New Avengers’ Ship
Sabienna
April 20, 2015
Introducing Gena Showalter's The Original Heartbreakers
Tiffany Tyer
April 18, 2015
20 Years of Anne Rice’s Beauty Series
Jane Kriel
April 17, 2015
Friday Beefcake: Classical Musicians
Jennifer Proffitt
Thu
Apr 23 2015 4:30pm

The Complicated Beauty and Her Beast: Why Bruce/Natasha Should Be Your New Avengers Ship

Natasha and Bruce in The Avengers

Natasha Romanoff is the little black dress of The Avengers fandom. Maybe it is just her inherent awesomeness, but I can imagine her with everyone from Clint to Steve to Maria. The Black Widow has close ties to every member of the team (except maybe Thor, but he's all wrapped up in Loki…err, I mean Jane), but could she ever be with the one man who truly frightens her, Bruce Banner, AKA The Hulk? The Avengers: Age of Ultron trailers suggest a special bond may be brewing between Bruce and Natasha, and you know what? It makes sense. 

Stay with me now. Natasha has a dark past of her own. As she famously said in the first Avengers, “I've got a lot of red in my ledger; I'd like to wipe it out.” Comic book fans know Natasha was subjected to brainwashing in the Red Room as a child, and as a result she became a killer. Unlike the squeaky clean Steve or god of thunder Thor, Natasha's past is dark, and complicated by acts she had no control over.

[Bruce knows a thing or two about that...]

Thu
Apr 23 2015 3:24pm

Romance News Roundup: Robin Covington Deal & Rainbow Rowell Cover!

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.

Temptation by Robin Covington—Daily Book Deal Alert: Robin Covington's Temptation is currently free in e-book at e-tailers including Amazon and iBookstore.* Plus, find out why Temptation made it onto Jess Moro's New Adult recommendations last August.

—The cover for Rainbow Rowell's Carry On (a spinoff, of sorts, from Fangirl) has been revealed at BuzzFeed. Are you excited to read Baz and Simon's tale, described as “a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama”? And if you want more Rowell, don't miss her H&H guest post about the most satisfying love stories in books, movies, and TV—you may find yourself nodding along with her suggestions or finding something new to try.

*We don't know how long deals will last, so get 'em while you can!

Thu
Apr 23 2015 2:15pm

First Look: Cheris Hodges’s Rumor Has It (April 28, 2015)

Rumor Has It by Cheris Hodges

Cheris Hodges
Rumor Has It
Kensington / April 28, 2015 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

Liza Palmer couldn't be happier when her best friend and sorority sister, Chante Britt, and her closest guy friend, Robert Montgomery, hit it off. And she's beyond thrilled when they announce their engagement. Robert is an up-and-comer running for the North Carolina senate. Chante is a partner at a prestigious law firm. They're a power couple made in heaven—until Liza discovers Robert in a compromising position—with another woman. . .

Liza can't possibly continue to support Robert's campaign, much less let him marry Chante. But when she tries to reveal the truth, Robert pulls out every corrupt trick in the book—including turning Chante against her. Her only choice is to seek out his opponent, Jackson Franklin, and help him take Robert down. But to Liza's great surprise, Jackson won't play dirty—and Liza finds him irresistible. As sparks fly, personally and politically, Liza and Jackson may become a winning team in more ways than one. . .

Cheris Hodges Rumor Has It is a political romance novel rife with scandal. Set in the middle of a tight race for Senate, the heat will be raised by two opponents. Liza is a social media queen. She can twist anyone’s bad decisions into positives using twitter. Jackson is a veteran who has battled his demons; he now gives back to the community at the veteran center. When the center is set to be shut down, he does the only thing he an think of to keep it going. He enters the race for Senate chair of North Carolina. He doesn’t realize the crazy, manipulate world he’s entering and Liza might just be his calming force.

Liza is a campaign manager for Jackson’s rival, Robert. They’ve been best friends since college and she would do anything to help him. This becomes quite a problem when she starts falling for Jackson. Can they keep their political ties out of their relationship?

[Politics and love are always a little messy...]

Thu
Apr 23 2015 1:00pm

Cover Spotlight with A.C. Arthur and Scarlett Cole!

Cover reveal graphic for A.C. Arthur's Primal Heat serial and Scarlett Cole's The Strongest SteelToday we're thrilled to reveal the covers from A.C. Arthur and Scarlett Cole! Last month we showed you the paperback cover for Arthur's Shadow Shifters novel Primal Heat, and now we can share with you the mouthwatering covers for the four-part serial edition of the book! Plus: In the market for a tat? Head on over to Scarlett Cole's Second Circles Tattoos novel The Strongest Steel for some inspiration from hot hero and tattoo artist Trent!

[Take a peek...]

Thu
Apr 23 2015 12:03pm

Arrow 3x20 Olicity Heart-to-Heart: Let’s Get It On

Oliver and Felicity have sex in Arrow 3x20, The Fallen
Image via Scu11y22

Arrow 3x20 Oliver/Felicity Captain's Log

Show/Episode: Arrow Season 3, Episode 20, “The Fallen”
Ship: Oliver/Felicity (Olicity)

Note: This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Arrow, including last night's Season 3, Episode 20, “The Fallen.”

Thea isn’t dead but it’s a near thing. The doctor tells Oliver there’s nothing they can do to save her, that her injuries are too vast. The way Stephen Amell plays Oliver’s emotions during all this is heart-wrenching. His horror and grief and helplessness is palpable and makes your throat ache to watch it. Maseo tells Oliver that Ra’s will bring Thea back via the Lazarus Pit if he just accepts his calling. Since Oliver is a man who will do anything to save his sister, he packs a bag. After briefly attempting to dissuade him, Dig and Felicity insist on going with him. Felicity goes to Ray to ask to borrow his jet. Ray, who sees this as the final clue in the puzzle that is Oliver and Felicity’s relationship, gently breaks off his relationship with her while still bestowing the jet for her use. In the end, a very nice guy. Go with God, Ray.

[And now: Bon voyage! The Olicity ship officially sets sail!...]

Thu
Apr 23 2015 9:30am

First Look: Jennifer Estep’s Cold Burn of Magic (April 28, 2015)

Cold Burn of Magic by Jennifer Estep

Jennifer Estep
Cold Burn of Magic (Black Blade #1)
Kensington / April 28, 2015 / $9.95 print, $7.99 digital

There Be Monsters Here. . .

It's not as great as you'd think, living in a tourist town that's known as “the most magical place in America.” Same boring high school, just twice as many monsters under the bridges and rival Families killing each other for power.

I try to keep out of it. I've got my mom's blood-iron sword and my slightly illegal home in the basement of the municipal library. And a couple of Talents I try to keep quiet, including very light fingers and a way with a lock pick.

But then some nasty characters bring their Family feud into my friend's pawn shop, and I have to make a call—get involved, or watch a cute guy die because I didn't. I guess I made the wrong choice, because now I'm stuck putting everything on the line for Devon Sinclair. My mom was murdered because of the Families, and it looks like I'm going to end up just like her.

I love Jennifer Estep’s writing. She is one of the few authors I have read who was able to cross from adult fiction to youth adult with no missteps or awkwardness in the transition. She has a powerful appealing voice that resonates through her characters. Her stories contain a good balance of normal everyday normal life with strong magical world building. Estep’s unique twists and turns keeps the pacing steady while witty dialogue and dynamic characters keep you entertained.

Jennifer Estep’s latest urban fantasy adventure revolves around a magical and deadly version of Disneyland and a reclusive teenager whose reluctantly dragged into a long standing family feud. Action, intrigue, suspense, and a healthy dose of snark introduces a new world that blends modern sensibilities with magical charm.

[Lose yourself in the magical land...]

Thu
Apr 23 2015 8:04am

Throwback Thursday: What Was Your First Office Romance Novel?

In Bed with Her Boss by Brenda JacksonMany couples meet in the work place‚ after all, it's where we spend a lot of our adult life. Office romances—particularly of the boss-secretary variety—are very popular in romance novels. Do you remember your very first office romance trope? What was it? Is it your favorite trope? What about office romances do you love the best?

Let us know in the comments!

Wed
Apr 22 2015 4:45pm

Storm Brewing: Women’s Fiction Best Bets for April 2015

The Second Sister by Marie Bostwick

I'm not afraid of storms,
for I'm learning to sail my ship.
~ Louisa May Alcott ~

There is no greater fear than being rudderless in a storm—not knowing which direction to turn or what decision to make. April’s heroines have their own storms to weather, but lucky for them, they are not traveling down new paths, because in most cases their future resolution is hidden in the past.

The Second Sister by Marie Bostwick

Years of long workdays and little sleep as a political campaigner are about to pay off now that Lucy Toomey's boss is entering the White House. But when her estranged older sister, Alice, unexpectedly dies, Lucy is drawn back to Nilson's Bay, her small, close-knit, Wisconsin hometown.

An accident in her teens left Alice mentally impaired, and she was content to stay in Nilson's Bay. Lucy, meanwhile, got out and never looked back. But now, to meet the terms of Alice's eccentric will, Lucy has taken up temporary residence in her sister's cottage—and begins to see the town, and Alice's life, anew. Alice's diverse group of friends appears to have little in common besides an interest in quilting. Yet deep affection for Alice united them and soon Lucy, too, is brought into the fold as they share problems and stories. And as she finds warmth and support in this new circle, Lucy begins to understand this will be her sister's enduring gift—a chance to move beyond her difficult past, and find what she has long been missing. . .

Strengths: Poignant sibling bond; Engaging friendships; HEA
Measure of Love: Teaspoon
Introspection Level: Medium
Thoughts: Winning story of how you can go home again. Even in death, Alice is such notable presence.

[More Best Bets for April 2015...]

Wed
Apr 22 2015 4:06pm

Romance News Roundup: Amy Schumer & Paige Tyler!

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.

—See for yourself why a sketch from last night's Inside Amy Schumer—which pulled double duty as both a parody of beloved Friday Night Lights TV couple Eric and Tami Taylor (a.k.a. Coach and Mrs. Coach) AND a PSA about campus rape—is setting the internet on fire today.

—Next week's H&H newsletter will feature an exclusive Author Spotlight with Paige Tyler (Her Wild Hero). For access to this and other members-only content, sign up to become a member of the H&H community and check “Yes” to receive the newsletter!

Wed
Apr 22 2015 2:45pm

First Look: Anna Campbell’s A Scoundrel by Moonlight (April 28, 2015)

A Scoundrel by Moonlight by Anna Campbell

Anna Campbell
A Scoundrel by Moonlight (Sons of Sins #4)
Grand Central Publishing / April 28, 2015 / $8.00 print, $7.99 digital

Anything can happen in the moonlight . . .

Justice. That's all Nell Trim wants-for her sister and for the countless other young women the Marquess of Leath has ruined with his wildly seductive ways. Now she has a bold plan to take him down . . . as long as she can resist the scoundrel's temptations herself.

From the moment Nell meets James Fairbrother, the air positively sizzles. Yet for all his size and power, there's something amazingly tender in his touch. Could he really be such a depraved rogue? The only way to find out is to beat the devil at his own game . . . one tempting kiss at a time.

Deception is a theme in many romances, and for a reason. If a relationship starts in dishonesty, how can the two lovers get to the place of vulnerability required to form a life-long bond? An important question to be sure, and Anna Campbell plays with multiple levels of this in A Scoundrel by Moonlight, the fourth entry in her Sons of Sin series.

Eleanor Trim, commonly known as Nell (and pay attention to names here, as Campbell plays them like a maestro) makes a promise to her dying half-sister, Dorothy; Nell will find the heartless rake who seduced and ruined Dorothy and make him pay. Not only for his crimes against Dorothy. Oh no, nothing as straightforward as that. The Marquess of Leath, as Dorthy names him, has an entire diary, detailing the multiple girls he’s ruined, and of his pride in doing so. Dorothy wants Nell to find this book and make it public, thus bringing about Leath’s ruin for revenge. She’s a brave one, our Nell, so Dorothy can rest easy. Nell’s in.

[So, let the plotting begin.]

Wed
Apr 22 2015 1:30pm

Cover Spotlight with Kate Baxter, Kate Douglas, A.C. Arthur, and Audra North!

Today we're thrilled to reveal the covers from Kate Baxter, A.C. Arthur, Kate Douglas, and Audra North! First up, we have two paranormal covers. Could Bears be the New Black with Kate Baxter's Stripped Bear? Then, great read to meet your mate...and your other mate. Who says three's a crowd in Kate Douglas and A.C. Arthur's Claimed by the Mate. Then to save her team, a heroine becomes fake-engaged to a man she can't stand! We imagine that won't last for long in Audra North's In the Fast Lane.

[See these covers up close!]

Wed
Apr 22 2015 12:00pm
Excerpt

The Harlot Countess: Exclusive Excerpt

Joanna Shupe

The Harlot Countess by Joanna Shupe

Lady Maggie Hawkins's debut was something she'd rather forget—along with her first marriage. Today, the political cartoonist is a new woman. A thoroughly modern woman. So much so that her clamoring public believes she's a man...

FACT: Drawing under a male pseudonym, Maggie is known as Lemarc. Her (his!) favorite object of ridicule: Simon Barrett, Earl of Winchester. He's a rising star in Parliament—and a former confidant and love interest of Maggie's who believed a rumor that vexes her to this day.

FICTION: Maggie is the Half-Irish Harlot who seduced her best friend's husband on the eve of their wedding. She is to be feared and loathed as she will lift her skirts for anything in breeches.

Still crushed by Simon's betrayal, Maggie has no intention of letting the ton crush her as well. In fact, Lemarc's cartoons have made Simon a laughingstock. . .but now it appears that Maggie may have been wrong about what happened years ago, and that Simon has been secretly yearning for her since. . .forever. Could it be that the heart is mightier than the pen and the sword after all?

Get a sneak peek at  Joanna Shupe's The Harlot Countess (available April 28, 2015) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Simon rapped on the door of a large townhouse on Charles Street. “We might very well be turned away.”

The Duke of Colton snorted. “I’ve never been refused entrance at a dissolute party in my life.”

The revelry from inside reached the front steps, a steady hum of noise. In addition to the voices, notes from a string quartet played. Simon could only wonder what the neighbors thought.

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

Wed
Apr 22 2015 10:45am

The Undeniable Sex Appeal of Zoe Forward’s Matt Ryan

Protecting His Witch by Zoe Forward

Protecting His Witch is the first book in Zoe Forward’s Keeper of the Veil series. At 252 pages this book was passionate, compelling, and sexy.

I was immediately taken with this story in the first few pages. Kat Ramsey wakes up in an unfamiliar bed, and her powers are threatening to jump her into an alternate universe. Buck naked. Unable to control this jumping ability, she fights to find clothes when she realizes she isn’t alone.

Matt Ryan has stolen my heart. For one, his dark, secretive nature—mixed with some badass—made the entire book for me. He’s burdened by responsibility, but when Kat comes back into his life for good after ten years, the reader discovers his passion, his secrets, and his undeniable sex appeal.

I love how the author focuses completely on action and reaction with these two characters. They affect each other with wild desire, and you can feel that passion on the page as you read. The sensual scenes are hopeful and romantic, and full of blistering heat. The chemistry smoldering between Kat and Matt is scorching hot and mesmerizing and I can’t wait to see if they appear elsewhere in the series.

[We can't either!]

Wed
Apr 22 2015 9:30am

First Look: Lexxie Couper’s Burn for You (April 28, 2015)

Burn for You by Lexxie Couper

Lexxie Couper
Burn for You (Outback Skies #2)
Samhain Publishing / April 28, 2015 / $3.49 digital

Harsh, rugged and unforgiving, the Australian Outback is the perfect place for Evan Alexander to hide. Up in the air, fighting fires from the cockpit of his helicopter, no one sees the scars that run clear down to his soul.

When a massive fire breaks out in a nearby national park, Wallaby Ridge becomes a media staging ground, and Evan’s daring piloting skills the center of attention. Evan finds it easy to dodge every reporter—except one. A woman from his past.

Jenna McGrath can’t believe the quiet, withdrawn man declared a hero is the same arrogant, cocky pilot she fell in love with six years ago. A cruel betrayal caused Jenna to remove herself from his world, but she’s never been able to erase him from her memories.

Their long-suppressed attraction reignites, but the walls Evan has built around himself are high. And while Jenna easily overlooks the scars on his body, she begins to wonder if molten desire is enough to melt the emotional scars binding his heart.

Warning: It’s not the flames devouring the landscape that will stir your soul…it’s the wounded, broken man fighting them from the air.

One of the finer things in life (if you’re a romance reader, that is) is to stagger home after a day’s work, kick off your shoes, toss your bra across the room and settle down with a beverage to prepare yourself for the onerous task of single-handedly sexually objectifying a fireman (or two) for a half hour or so between the covers of a good book.

[The flames are just too hot...]

Wed
Apr 22 2015 8:02am

What Are You Doing for Earth Day?

Jesse Metcalfe in Desperate HousewivesEarth Day is a great reminder that we only have one world and we need to take care of it! Will you only be reading e-books today (saving trees!), perhaps you'll unplug your e-reader altogether and save the electricity, or maybe, you'll spend the day in the great outdoors, volunteering!

How are you spending Earth Day?

Tue
Apr 21 2015 4:30pm

First Look: Penelope Douglas’s Aflame (April 21, 2015)

Aflame by Penelope Douglas

Penelope Douglas
Aflame (Fall Away #4)
Penguin Intermix / April 21, 2015 / $2.99 digital

The tables have turned. Now I have the power—and it’s his turn to beg…

Everyone wants to be me.

Maybe it’s the sway of my skirt or the way I flip my hair, but I don’t care. Even though their attention is the last thing I crave, I just can’t stop. I dominate the track, the speed rattles my bones, and the wind and the crowd screams my name.

I’m her. The girl driver. The queen of the race. And I’m surviving—something he thought I’d never do.

They all talk about him. Did you see Jared Trent on T.V? What did you think of his last race, Tate? When is he coming back to town, Tate?

But I refuse to care too much. Because when Jared does come home, I won’t be here.

Tatum Brandt is gone. I’m someone new.

This was one of my most anticipated books of the year! Penelope Douglas isn’t afraid to take chances. After the cliffhanger from Falling Away I couldn’t wait to see what happens to Tate and Jared. Pulling the rug out on Tate and Jared’s relationship might have seemed like a cruel move but after Aflame you’ll see why it made their journey so much more authentic.

[A heartfelt journey that leads...]

Tue
Apr 21 2015 3:16pm

Romance News Roundup: Roxanne St. Claire & Lauren Royal Deals, Chris Pratt, and More!

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.

Secrets on the Sand by Roxanne St. Claire—Heroes and Heartbreakers is pleased to introduce you to our newest team member, Jarondakie Patrick! You'll see her around the site as J.Patrick, and we know she's looking forward to getting to know you all.

—Deal Alert #1: Roxanne St. Claire's Barefoot Bay Billionaire's novel Secrets on the Sand is currently free in e-book at e-tailers such as Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, and Amazon.*

Magic Mike XXL's ab campaign is one we're happy to rally behind, how 'bout you? (Thanks to Janet Webb for the heads-up!)

—Starz has released images for the next Outlander episode ahead of this weekend, so click for more Jamie/Claire goodness!

—Love Chris Pratt? Get in line! And watch the new Jurassic Park trailer, then come squee with us. Or go enjoy his edition of Friday Beefcake again.

[+Free Lauren Royal book, Hemsworth in leather, and more!...]

Tue
Apr 21 2015 2:30pm

Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveals from Madeline Hunter, Lauren Layne, Katie Rose, and Piper Drake!

Today, it's raining men in our weekly roundup of covers from Madeline Hunter, Lauren Layne, Katie Rose, and Piper Drake! First up, meet a very buttoned up barrister with a passionate side in Madeline Hunter's Tall, Dark, and Wicked. Then she's just “one of the guys”—but not for long—in Irresistibly Yours by Lauren Layne. Katie Rose continues her Boys of Summer series with The Heat of the Moment, and finally, take a walk on the suspenseful side with Piper Drake's Hidden Impact.

[See the book behind those abs...]

Tue
Apr 21 2015 1:45pm

Jane the Virgin 1x19 Heart-to-Heart: #TeamWTFJustHappened

Jane and Rafael in Jane the Virgin 1x19

This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of Jane the Virgin, including Monday night's Season 1, Episode 19, “Chapter Nineteen.” Enjoy! 

Jane the Virgin 1x19 Captain's Log

Show/Episode: Jane the Virgin, Season 1, Episode 19, “Chapter Nineteen.”
Ship(s): Jane/Rafael

The Shipping News

Every relationship has its ups and downs, but this is getting ridiculous. Jane hilariously goes through six of the seven stages of grief in about 16 hours and before getting to the final step, acceptance, she goes to Rafael to convince him not to give up. We’re treated to a montage of some of their most romantic moments and I’m rooting for Rafael to make an effort. He does. He agrees to couples therapy.

Jane finds a therapist with an opening and she and Rafael sit down. The therapist asks for their relationship in a nutshell and we get a quick recap of all the crazy things that have happened to them—it was like a 60-second Soap Opera Digest. They leave the therapist’s office with a list of intimacy exercises, but Rafael is not convinced they can fix what’s wrong. He’s still holding on to the “we’re too different” thing. Let it go, Rafael! Let it go!

[Follow Elsa's advice...]

Tue
Apr 21 2015 11:00am

First Look: Ashlinn Craven’s Core Attraction (April 27, 2015)

Core Attraction by Ashlinn Craven

Ashlinn Craven
Core Attraction
Crimson Romance / April 27, 2015 / $3.79 digital

Living with her dad and single since the Ice Age, Fiona Halpin's plan is to get a promotion, a swanky house, and a boyfriend - strictly in that order. So when Dr. Declan MacCarthy and his protest leaflets turn up outside the power plant where she handles public relations, she's almost too busy doing damage control to notice how gorgeous he is. Almost.

Declan has returned from Japan to settle in his Irish hometown and live a meaningful life by treating his cancer patients and joining a campaign against the biggest local employer's deadly radiation risks. But that means facing off with the fierce Fiona, who's as protective of her company as a pack of Rottweilers.

As Fiona slowly warms to Declan and his passion for his cause, a strong compatibility and common ground develop between them. But can she let down her defenses enough to let him reach her inner core, or is their passion only heading for meltdown?

Sensuality Level: Sensual

In Ashlinn Craven's Core Attraction, Fiona Halpin is on a mission to educate the public about the safety measures that DunCore, the local nuclear power plant in town, implements for the community’s safety. Also on a mission is newly arrived oncologist, Declan MacCarthy. And he’s just as determined as Fiona to inform the community about the dangerous side effects of nuclear radiation based on first-hand experience.

[Will their connection be nuclear too?]