<i>Heart of a Bad Boy</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Heart of a Bad Boy: Exclusive Excerpt Sugar Jamison "Will she take a chance on the bad boy?" <i>Grin and Beard It</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Grin and Beard It: Exclusive Excerpt Penny Reid "I gathered a deep breath for patience just as Jethro’s chest..." Preview Crave App's Taylor Jenkins Reid's <i>One True Loves</i> Preview Crave App's Taylor Jenkins Reid's One True Loves Taylor Jenkins Reid "Everything that happened before today feels different now..." <i>Learning Curves</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Learning Curves: Exclusive Excerpt Cathryn Fox "His grin was slow, sexy…deliciously filthy..."
From The Blog
May 30, 2016
May 2016's Best Romances
Team H & H
May 27, 2016
Friday Beefcake: "Domesticated" Men
Team H & H
May 25, 2016
Using—and Not Using—Birth Control in Romance
willaful
May 18, 2016
What Is the Difference Between New Adult and Women's Fiction?
Jessica Moro and Scarlettleigh
May 17, 2016
Come Fly With Me (and Chanel Cleeton)
JohnJacobson
Thu
May 26 2016 10:00am

First Look: Jennifer Probst’s Everywhere and Every Way (May 31, 2016)

Everwhere and Every Way by Jennifer Probst

Jennifer Probst
Everywhere and Every Way (Billionaire Builders #1)
Gallery / May 31, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

Raise your hand if watching HGTV is a must, not a maybe . . . and the reason is the hunky, creative, passionate, talented hosts of their most popular shows. You know who I’m talkin’ about—Drew and Jonathan, The Property Brothers, lead the way. Come to think of it, contractors, carpenters, property developers, and renovators have graced the pages of many a romance. Think of hammer yielding hunks like Declan Fitzgerald in Nora RobertsMidnight Bayou and don’t forget her latest: the Montgomery brothers—Beckett, Ryder, and Owen—in her Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy.  And who could forget the latest sexy, uber-competent contractor on the block: Kristen Ashley's Deke Hightower, the man who gets it done for Justice in Bounty. Men who can transform a woman’s surroundings by giving her the walk-in closet and in-house spa of her dreams never go out of style.

[Not at all...]

Thu
May 26 2016 8:15am

Have You Ever Read Jo Beverley?

The Viscount Needs a Wife by Jo BeverleyThis week, romance lost a great star of the genre—Jo Beverley. Many have turned to Word Wenches, the blog that Jo ran along with fellow writers Anne Gracie, Mary Jo Putney, and others, to share memories of a beloved author and friend. Today, we celebrate her work, and ask: Have you ever read Jo Beverley? Do you have a favorite book or series? 

Let us know in the comments!

Wed
May 25 2016 4:52pm

It’s Raining Tropes—Plus-Size Heroine Deal & Roommates-to-Lovers Cover: Romance News:

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

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

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Big Girls Do It Better by Jasinda Wilder—Deal Alert: Jasinda Wilder's Big Girls Do It: Volumes 1-4 e-book bundle is FREE for the moment in e-book at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, iBooks, etc.* We are 100% here for plus-size heroines, always. (And heroes, too!)

Deal Alert: Julie Garwood's first Claybourne Brides novel, One Pink Rose, is discounted to $2.99 in e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, etc.* Do you remember your first Julie Garwood? 

Fresh Outta the Oven

Kresley Cole's Arcana Rising cover hints at a tempestuous adventure ahead, though we'd expect no less from the Arcana Chronicles. Go check out the cover and look for the book, which Cole suggests may be “the most spine-tingling and sensual AC story yet,” on August 15. If you haven't taken the plunge yet, I'll just say the series is one of those that puts the “adult” in Young Adult.

Laurelin Paige and Kayti McGee's Screwmates sure is an attention-getter! See the cover and get an idea of the story behind the bold title over at GoodReads. The roommates-to-lovers/sex-lessons contemporary will be out October 24. You may have read these two before as Laurelin McGee.

[+Alpha Showdown voting, more book news & Sarah MacLean video...]

Wed
May 25 2016 4:30pm

First Look: Anne Calhoun’s Under the Surface (May 31, 2016)

Anne Calhoun
Under the Surface (Alpha Ops #4) 
St. Martin's Press / May 31, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

Sex on a stick, Lord, that’s all I need…walking, talking sex on a stick. If he can mix a decent drink, so much the better.

And so opens Anne Calhoun’s fourth installment (yet first full-length novel) in her Alpha Ops series. Eve Webber is the owner of Eye Candy, a bar/club in Lancaster, PA’s East Side where everyone behind the bar is exactly what the establishment’s name suggests—eye candy.

“Eye Candy isn’t just a bar. It’s an experience. Women come for hot bartenders, dance music, great drinks, and a chance to unwind with girlfriends.”

And Eve is in desperate need of a new bartender. Enter Chad Henderson.

His eyes darkened from hazel to mossy green, and a hint of color stained his cheekbones. Okay, they had chemistry, that heart-pounding, shallow-breathing feeling that meant the pheromones were surging.

Chemistry with me means chemistry with customers, she thought firmly.

[We did NOT fail chemistry in school...]

Wed
May 25 2016 1:30pm

Oh, What Tangled Webs We Weave...Erotic Romance Best Bets for May 2016

Mister O by Lauren Blakely

In need of some sexy reading material to fill your e reader? I’m here for you. Each month I will bring you an assortment of erotic pleasure reads to tempt your palette and your credit card.

May is a month of many faces and that is never more apparent than with the people below who choose hide behind masks and the passion and desire that sets them free.

Mister O by Lauren Blakely

Just call me Mister O. Because YOUR pleasure is my super power.

Making a woman feel 'oh-god-that's-good' is the name of the game, and if a man can't get the job done, he should get the hell out of the bedroom. I'm talking toe-curling, mind-blowing, sheet-grabbing ecstasy. Like I provide every time.

I suppose that makes me a superhero of pleasure, and my mission is to always deliver.

But then I'm thrown for a loop when a certain woman asks me to teach her everything about how to win a man. The only problem? She's my best friend's sister, but she's far too tempting to resist—especially when I learn that sweet, sexy Harper has a dirty mind too and wants to put it to good use. What could possibly go wrong as I give the woman I've secretly wanted some no-strings-attached lessons in seduction?

No one will know, even if we send a few dirty sexts. Okay, a few hundred. Or if the zipper on her dress gets stuck. Not on that! Or if she gives me those f*&k-me-eyes on the train in front of her whole family.

The trouble is the more nights I spend with her in bed, the more days I want to spend with her out of bed. And for the first time ever, I'm not only thinking about how to make a woman cry out in pleasure —I'm thinking about how to keep her in my arms for a long time to come.

Looks like the real Adventures of Mister Orgasm have only just begun....

Fans of humorous, smoking hot, erotic romance contemporaries are sure to love Lauren Blakely’s latest adventure—Mister O. Friendship, love, and titillating shenanigans go hand in hand in hand when a self-proclaimed sex god meets his perfect match in the most least likely person. Nick Hammer is a man who knows his way around women. He loves every aspect of them and his goal is to always satisfy them with the ultimate O-orgasm. But when his best friend’s sister, Harper Holiday, asks for his help in learning how to seduce a man, Nick puts his best, errr, foot forward and ends up losing his heart in the process.

[And we lose ours...]

Wed
May 25 2016 11:40am

Nothing Between Them: Using—and Not Using—Birth Control in Romance

Against the Wall by Jill Sorenson

When it comes to depicting birth control in cis-het romance, readers fall in widely different camps. Some feel the very mention is a buzzkill. Others think leaving it out makes the characters too impossibly stupid to root for. And then there are those—hands up!—who find the world of romance a perfect place to explore ambivalence around fertility control, an edgy area that can be powerfully emotional and arousing. When a guaranteed happy ending can insure that no one has to worry about the effects of pregnancy or children on health, time, personal goals, or money, birth control—or the lack of it—can be a significant marker in the growth of a romantic relationship.

Sometimes it's an indicator of the increasing strength of passion, as in Jill Sorenson's Against The Wall, in which the couple are so carried away, they not only forget protection but get busy on the hood of a car, in a semi-public place. (Pregnancy is definitely not wanted, leading to a rare romance novel use of “Plan B.”) For Sam, in Shannon McKenna's In For the Kill, accidental unprotected sex feeds into his anger at Sveti's use of him for sex:

[It's called protection for a reason...]

Wed
May 25 2016 9:30am

First Look: Lisa Kleypas’s Marrying Winterborne (May 31, 2016)

Marrying Winterborne by Lisa Kleypas

Lisa Kleypas
Marrying Winterborne (The Ravenels #2)
Avon Romance / May 31, 2016 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

A ruthless tycoon

Savage ambition has brought common-born Rhys Winterborne vast wealth and success. In business and beyond, Rhys gets exactly what he wants. And from the moment he meets the shy, aristocratic Lady Helen Ravenel, he is determined to possess her. If he must take her virtue to ensure she marries him, so much the better...

A sheltered beauty

Helen has had little contact with the glittering, cynical world of London society. Yet Rhys’s determined seduction awakens an intense mutual passion. Helen’s gentle upbringing belies a stubborn conviction that only she can tame her unruly husband. As Rhys’s enemies conspire against them, Helen must trust him with her darkest secret. The risks are unthinkable . . . the reward, a lifetime of incomparable bliss. And it all begins with…

Marrying Winterborne

Helen and Winterborne stole the show in Cold-Hearted Rake, Lisa Kleypas’ family-centric return to historical romance, particularly Avon historicals, after years away. And in the second of the new Ravenels series, Marrying Winterborne, their story is brimming with romance, dazzling with details, and nuanced with depth and delight alike, as only she’s known for. Prepare for a new Lisa Kleypas classic. 

[We're prepared...]

Wed
May 25 2016 8:03am

To What Lengths Will You Go to Find Out If There’s An HEA?

via GIPHY

Unlike The Librarian on The Magicians, I am not opposed to spoilers, especially when it comes to finding out if a series ends happily. Here's the scene: You are about to start a series that you haven't read before, by an author maybe you haven't read before either. You're about to take the dive, but wait... what if it doesn't end happily!? 

This is a real concern I, and I think many, readers face when they plunge into the dubious world of non-romance. Even in the world of romance, once there's a sniff of a love triangle, I will find myself trying to ferret out information to see if the love triangle ends the way I want to. Yes, yes, it's all about the journey, but I need certain guarantees. Recently, I spent an emotional rollercoaster of an hour grilling a friend—and narrating my frustration to Heather Waters, H&H's site manager—on whether a book ended happily and the way I wanted it to. 

What are the greatest lengths you've gone to find out a book—one that you haven't even bought or started yet—ends the way you want it to? 

Let us know in the comments! 

 

Tue
May 24 2016 5:09pm

Remembering Jo Beverley and More: Romance News

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

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

Editors' Note: We are heartbroken to say that romance giant Jo Beverley has passed away. Her fellow Word Wenches, including Mary Jo Putney and Anne Gracie, as well as Jo's many readers, have been sharing memories here at the Word Wenches blog.

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Fever by Joan SwanDeal Alert: Joan Swan's first Phoenix Rising book, Fever, is only $.99 in e-book at Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Amazon, etc.* “This is an exciting adventure with a unique paranormal twist,” says Lucy Dosch in her first look at Fever.

—Deal Alert: Erica Monroe's Beauty and the Rake (Rookery Rogues #3) is a steal for $.99 in e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, etc.* Funnily enough, Jenn Proffitt at this moment is mulling over the question “Why do we love Beauty and the Beast tales so much?” and would love to get your take.

Deal Alert: Lisa Renee Jones' Denial, Book 1 in the Careless Whispers series, is on sale for $1.99 in e-book at iBooks, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.* You met Ella in the Inside Out series—now get her full story...

[+UnREAL season 2 scoop & a Me Before You sweepstakes...]

Tue
May 24 2016 4:30pm

First Look: Jay Crownover’s Charged (May 24, 2016)

Jay Crownover
Charged (Saints of Denver #2)
William Morrow / May 24, 2016 / $14.99 print, $4.99 digital

As readers we’ve been sitting back and watching the tail spin that is Avett Walker’s life for several books now. We’ve seen her shift from a moody teenager to an accessory in her bad boy boyfriend's armed robbery at a bar. Now, Charged opens with the Avett, scared out of her mind, and dealing with the consequences of her actions up to this point. 

While the Marked Men series dealt with redefining family—and coming to terms with the one you have—the theme of the Saints of Denver seems to be one of redemption. First Asa (while not part of this series, he is the bridge to both series) finds redemption for his own past—and now pays it forward in Avett's story—then Zeb finds his redemption through his child. However, Avett, and Quaid's redemption comes more from finding their own self-worth—Avett as she navigates the rocky terrain of young-adulthood, and Quaid as he searches for all the things he lost in a messy divorce. 

[What a beautiful mess they make together...]

Tue
May 24 2016 2:15pm

Cover Tuesday with Donna Grant, Jessica Lemmon, Annabeth Albert & Kelly Siskind!

Cover reveal bannerSexy, suspenseful contemporaries are our catnip, so we are quite pleased to present to you the inside scoop on four such books heading our way: Donna Grant's The Protector (Marine whose father has been kidnapped joins forces with a kickass former Air Force pilot he can't get out of his head...), Jessica Lemmon's The Bastard Billionaire (wounded-vet-turned-COO falls for his personal assistant...or does he???), Annabeth Albert's Wrapped Together (former business rivals + Christmastime = primo romance), and Kelly Siskind's A Fine Mess (he's Mr. One Night Stand until he meets Lily...).

The Protector by Donna Grant

The Protector by Donna Grant (Sons of Texas #2)

EVERYTHING’S HOTTER IN TEXAS

When Marine Force Recon captain Cullen Loughman learns that his father’s been kidnapped, he will do whatever it takes to find him. In order to achieve his mission, Cullen will need to team up with the best of the best—someone who just happens to be the most stunning woman he’s ever laid eyes on…

This isn’t the first rodeo for ex—Air Force pilot Mia Carter. Still, Cullen’s bad-boy good looks and charm are distracting her from duty. . .and it appears that the feeling is mutual. As Mia and Cullen make their descent into a dark, dangerous world, their attraction reaches the boiling point. But is their desire worth the risk when a ruthless enemy is waiting in the wings—or will their Lone Star love conquer all? 

[+Allow us to present 3 more books you can't miss...]

Tue
May 24 2016 12:00pm
Excerpt

Deception Island: Exclusive Excerpt

Brynn Kelly

Deception Island by Brynn Kelly

A stolen boy
A haunted soldier
A cornered con woman…
Rafe Angelito thought he was done with the demons from his past—until his son is kidnapped. Blackmailed into abducting an American heiress, the legionnaire soon finds himself trapped in paradise with a fiery, daring beauty who's nothing he expects…and everything he desires. But when he uncovers her own dark secret, Rafe realizes he's made a critical mistake—one that could cost him everything.

Playing body double for a spoiled socialite was supposed to be Holly Ryan's ticket to freedom. But when she's snatched off her yacht by a tall, dark and dangerous stranger, the not-quite-reformed con artist will make a desperate play to turn her captor from enemy to ally, by any means necessary.

Yet as scorching days melt into sultry nights, Holly is drawn to the mysterious capitaine, with his unexpected sense of honor and his searing touch. When they're double-crossed, they'll have to risk trusting each other in ways they never imagined…because in this deadly game of deception, it's their lives—and hearts—on the line.

Get a sneak peek at Brynn Kelly's Deception Island (available May 31, 2016) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Why was the damn thing not working? In pitch darkness, Holly felt for the buttons on the sat phone and punched them for the tenth time. The screen stayed resolutely black. It’d been fully charged that afternoon, so it couldn’t be the batteries. Could it have been damaged? She was screwed. What now?

A fern rustled next to her. She pulled her feet onto the rock she was sitting on. Snake, scorpion or spider? After a minute the noise stopped. She eased to her feet and backed away—into something solid. She gasped, swiveling. A tree. Get a grip, princess. Could she creep back out to the beach and make a bonfire to attract a ship or plane before Rafe found her? And how the hell would she light it—rubbing sticks? Put her in a city alleyway and she’d know just how to survive. In the wild she couldn’t tell a turtle from a stone.

[Read the full excerpt...]

Tue
May 24 2016 11:15am

Hands Up: Unforgettable Law Enforcement Heroines in Romance

Heroes and Heartbreakers is thrilled to welcome Mary Burton (The Shark) to the site—on her release day, no less, yay! Mary writes about state troopers, FBI agents, and more, and is here to share some of her favorite badass ladies in law enforcement. Thanks, Mary!

I’ve been a fan of female police investigators since I was a kid. I cut my teeth on the likes of Nancy Drew but now gravitate to the less than perfect characters. All my favorite female fictional characters share similar qualities. They are hard working, smart and doing their best to balance a very difficult job as well as some kind of personal life. When the job or life knocks them down, they get back up and keep putting one foot in front of the other. All have their own quirks, family issues and personal demons not only make them more human but also better detectives.  These ladies aren’t pushovers.   

Who are some of my favorites?

I first crossed paths with Lisa Gardner’s D.D. Warren in Live to Tell. Smart, savvy and hard working, she’s made a name for herself in Boston’s P.D. as a top investigator. She’s cracked some of the toughest cases and survived a serial killer. 

[That's one badass lady...]

Tue
May 24 2016 9:30am

First Look: Linda Grimes’ All Fixed Up (May 24, 2016)

All Fixed Up by Linda Grimes

Linda Grimes
All Fixed Up (Ciel Halligan #4)
Tor Books / May 24, 2016 / $29.99 print, $14.99 digital

Ciel Halligan’s profession as a fixer, made possible by a genetic anomaly enabling her to take on the physical appearance of anyone she touches and borrows a bit of energy from, has gotten her into a few tight and dangerous spots in the past, but aside from the discomfort she feels with the unexpected test run in a plane at zero-G, her impersonation of a NASA astronaut for a day seems straightforward and uneventful enough—until the photographer assigned to her, Alec Loughlin, asks her who or what she really is. Alarm at the man’s apparent ability to see through her “disguise” turns to fear when he tries to kidnap her shortly thereafter. Thanks to her new sister-in-law’s self-defense training, Ciel manages to get away.

Despite satisfaction at her escape, Ciel and fellow aura-adaptor, Mark, her CIA former crush now sitting somewhat precariously at complicated-friend status, remain on alert given the failed kidnapper still being on the loose. Despite her concern, an evening with her boyfriend, Billy, makes her feel considerably better, until the next morning when she gets word of a family death—Aunt Helen, also an aura adaptor, murdered in Central Park. After spotting Loughlin at her aunt’s funeral, Ciel and others in the adaptor community begin to suspect a connection. While attempting to help track down Loughlin, Ciel also has major personal issues to deal with, including her not-quite-gone-forever feelings for Mark even while very happy with Billy.

[Are we sure she's very happy?...]

Tue
May 24 2016 8:10am

Why Do We Love Beauty and the Beast Tales So Much?

I've always thought, at its core, that the reason I loved the Beauty and the Beast story so much was that Belle is essentially the Patron Saint of Readers (unofficially... I'm sure there's actually patron saints and dieties of readers). However, I think the love of the tale goes deeper than that—it's the same reason we love the reformed rake, the alpha-who-only-has-eyes-for-you, and so on and so forth. It proves that love transforms all—but also that love makes us want to change for ourselves too. 

What do you think it is about the Beauty and the Beast tale that has appealed to so many of us? Let me know in the comments!

Mon
May 23 2016 5:30pm

First Look: Marguerite Kaye & Bronwyn Scott’s Scandal at the Midsummer Ball (May 24, 2016)

Marguerite Kaye & Bronwyn Scott
Scandal at the Midsummer Ball
Harlequin Historical / May 24, 2016 / $6.50 print, $4.99 digital

THE OFFICER'S TEMPTATION by Marguerite Kaye 

Colonel Fergus Kennedy must make a suitable match at the Midsummer Ball. But when this officer encounters sultry acrobat Katerina Vengarov, he finds himself torn between duty…and heart-stopping, irresistible passion! 

THE DEBUTANTE'S AWAKENING by Bronwyn Scott 

Kael Gage is the last person at the Midsummer Ball Miss Zara Titus should speak to—and anything more is definitely off-limits! But the notorious rake seems determined to awaken this innocent debutante's every desire…

The Duke and Duchess of Brockmore host an annual house party where they facilitate powerful and prestigious marital matches for many of their guests. Invitations are highly coveted, but a couple of the attendees are more leery than anticipatory.

Part of the entertainment for the week is the appearance of the world renowned Flying Vengarovs, a brother and sisters acrobatic team, and this theme of “flying” is integral to both of the novellas which comprise Scandal at the Midsummer Ball.

[We're into it...]

Mon
May 23 2016 4:45pm

Kristen Ashley’s The Honey, Beauty and the Beast Trailer & Free Shotgun-Wedding Novella: Romance News

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

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

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Summer Chaparral by Genevieve TurnerDeal Alert: Genevieve Turner's shotgun-wedding novella Summer Chaparral, Book 2 in the Las Morenas series, is FREE in e-book at Barnes & NobleAmazon, etc.* The story was first published as part of the One Love anthology from Roxie Rivera, Farrah Rochon, and more.

—Deal Alert: Mandy Baxter's U.S. Marshals novel One Touch More is discounted to $1.99 in e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, etc.* Sneak a peek at the romance brewing between hotel manager Tabitha and “Damien Evans”—who is actually Parker Evans, an undercover U.S. Marshal—in a preview of One Touch More.

Deal Alert: Elizabeth Essex's Mad About the Marquess is only $.99 in e-book at iBooks, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.* Psst, Elizabeth Essex has a (not-so) secret obsession with royals! But, hey, don't we all?

Fresh Outta the Oven

We're already stuck on Kristen Ashley's new erotic series, The Honey, which she announced today on her Facebook page will launch with The Deep End (out March 7, 2017) and be followed soon after by book 2, The Farthest Edge (out June 6). Here's what we know about The Deep End so far:

[+Read all about the first book in The Honey series...]

Mon
May 23 2016 3:00pm

May 2016 New Adult Romance Best Bets—May These Heroes Seduce You

For the One by Brenna Aubrey

This month there’s new kind of heroes that will have you wanting to wrap around their maypole. From classic nerds, to smart lawyers, to medieval role-playing knights?! You’re sure to find some new twists on a classic swoonworthy hero.

For The One by Brenna Aubrey has a unique storyline that had me cheering for the underdog. Wil was previously introduced in the series but his book can be read as a standalone. William, our hero, is diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome and while this impacts his interactions with other people, Jenna our heroine, isn’t deterred by this. She has her own battles as she was a refugee in this country and is still dealing with the aftershocks of living in a war-torn country. Jenna has always viewed Wil as a friend, a hot one but, still a friend. Until, he rides in and defends her honor. There’s some role playing here, as both Jenna and William are involved in the Barony of Anaya, a medieval modern society. Take your chance on this refreshing, heart-pounding romance that challenges these two characters and delivers an epic of tale of growth and love.

Caged by Karina Espinosa is the second in the Mackenzie Grey series and must be read in order. It picks up right where Shift ends and takes you on a high octane ride trying to navigate the world of alpha male werewolves as an alpha female wolf. Politics and personal issues won’t bring Mackenzie down and she’ll stop at nothing to make it all right.

[We approve of this plan...]

Mon
May 23 2016 9:30am
Excerpt

Baker’s Dozen: Exclusive Excerpt

Allison Fuller

Baker's Dozen by Allison Fuller

If the way to a man's heart was through his stomach, she'd be married by now - but on the cusp of thirty, Victoria Mason is still single.
She tells herself she has everything she needs - a thriving bakery, a wonderful son, great friends. A good life. But she watches through the pass-through of her kitchen every morning as customers come and go, waiting for that one particular face to wander in. Mr. 8:15, Gavin Bailey, dark roast with room and a mini pie to-go as he flirts with the girl behind the counter. He's a bright spot in a life that has become increasingly monotonous.
She knows nothing about him beyond his easy smile and his usual order, but that's about to change. As the weather grows colder, her love life heats up, and while fall turns to winter in the Big Apple, Victoria discovers that Mr. 8:15 could be exactly what she needs to shake things up.

Get a sneak peek at Allison Fuller's Baker's Dozen (available May 23, 2016) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

It is an October Monday in New York City.

The leaves are turning on the trees, little pops of fiery color hovering above the sidewalks, crunching underfoot and collecting along the edges of streets that finally no longer smell like hot trash and gutter water. The summer tourists are gone and the Thanksgiving ones haven’t yet arrived, so for a little while the sidewalks don’t feel so congested.

Summer’s muggy heat has faded, leaving the air cool and crisp; September’s maddening inability to decide whether it wants to be too hot or too wet finally settled into something stable and lovely. Sunny days with just enough chill in the air to warrant a light jacket, over a soft sweater, over a thin long-sleeve – layers you can peel off and put back on to keep from sweating or freezing. The scarves have come out, but not the mittens. The slouchy hats, but not the fur-edged hoods. It’s denim over cashmere, not North Face zipped tightly over wool.

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

Mon
May 23 2016 12:00pm

First Look: Liz Talley’s Charmingly Yours (May 24, 2016)

Charmingly Yours by Liz Talley

Liz Talley 
Charmingly Yours (Morning Glory #1)
Montlake / May 24, 2016 / $9.50 print, $3.99 digital

Charmingly Yours is an appealing play on the charm bracelet that serves as catalyst in Liz Talley’s new series, and the title also hints at the charm of Morning Glory, Mississippi, hometown of the heroine. But the title fails to suggest Talley’s substantive exploration of the will to risk that is required to break free from familial tethers that makes this novel more than just another sweet, small-town romance.

Rosemary Reynolds loves her hometown where, except for her college years, she has spent all of her twenty-seven years.

Morning Glory was a way of life. It was sweet tea and porch swings. Mayhaw jelly in a mason jar and fireflies dotting the night.  Morning Glory was Sunday Morning church bells, gossip at Dean’s Diner, and traditions that didn’t make sense but were carried out regardless because that’s the way it was.

[And that's the way it was gonna stay...]