<i>The CEO Daddy Next Door</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The CEO Daddy Next Door: Exclusive Excerpt Karen Booth "Before she could take a breath, he claimed his kiss." <i>Dark Carousel</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Dark Carousel: Exclusive Excerpt Christine Feehan "She couldn’t believe how attracted she was to the man." <i>Roller Girl</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Roller Girl: Exclusive Excerpt Vanessa North "A lump forms in my throat and I hug him again." H&H Quickies #17: "The Engagement Party" by Audra North (Part 5 of 5) H&H Quickies #17: "The Engagement Party" by Audra North (Part 5 of 5) Audra North Audra North presents a Quickie in 5 parts.
From The Blog
July 23, 2016
The Bisexual Dilemma
Deidre Knight
July 22, 2016
Yes, We Really Went There: Comments That Made Our Week
Team H & H
July 22, 2016
Friday Beefcake: A Love Letter to Our New TV Crushes
Team H & H
July 21, 2016
Sherrilyn Kenyon Deal & Book Soundtracks
Heather Waters
July 21, 2016
Can Frankenstein Be Sexy?
Sahara Hoshi
Jul 24 2016 1:30pm

First Look: Megan Frampton’s Why Do Dukes Fall in Love? (July 26, 2016)

Why Do Dukes Fall in Love? by Megan Frampton

Megan Frampton
Why Do Dukes Fall in Love? (Dukes Behaving Badly #4)
Avon / July 26, 2016 / $7.99 print, $5.99 digital

Fun Fact: Megan Frampton is the former community manager of Heroes and Heartbreakers—we now love being able to talk about her historical romances!

Megan Frampton sparkles again with her very witty latest novel, Why Do Dukes Fall in Love? What do I love about this book? Pretty much everything. This character driven story features widowed Edwina Cheltam, her daughter Gertrude, Michael, the Duke of Hadlow, and Chester his dog.

First our heroine Edwina. She’s smart. Like mega-clever with numbers smart. But when her husband dies and her brother-in-law squanders away all of her late husband's fortune, she is left with nothing but her brain and her ability to work. The last thing she wants is to be burdened to said brother-in-law who gives her and me the heebie-jeebies. She finds employ with the Duke of Hadlow as his personal secretary and the match is perfection. More on that in a moment.

Now let’s meet our beloved Duke. He’s a peculiar one and a bit of a savant, this Duke of Hadlow. Had he been alive today, I’m certain we would diagnose him as having a mild form of Asperger’s Syndrome. He doesn’t care for social settings, needs routine and preciseness, and has no need for friends and likes it that way. Good thing he’s a duke—where everyone caters to his needs and demands. Except Edwina. She’s possibly the first person who has defied his demands.

[Read more...]

Jul 24 2016 11:30am

First Look: Ainslie Paton’s Damaged Goods (July 29, 2016)

Damaged Goods by Ainslie Paton

Ainslie Paton
Damaged Goods (Sidelined #2)
Supervised by Cat / July 29, 2016 / #3.99 digital

Jesus Heist, this book—which follows Offensive Behaviour, book one in the Sidelined series—is great.

Here’s why it kept me turning pages way past oh-shit-I-have-work-tomorrow o’clock.

I love that it challenges the ‘a-hard-wang-is-everything’ myth of sexuality. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against wang and I’ve met plenty of hard wangs in romance that I’ve loved. But I’ve also always been a little uncomfortable with the notion (frequently found betwixt book covers) that all one needs for great sex is a boner that a dog couldn’t chew through and the stamina to vigorously apply it Mixmaster or Ditch-witch style to the heroine’s nether regions.

Anyone with a basic acquaintanceship with human sexuality knows that this is rot, and yet much of our culture (and Viagra sales) is built on the notion that a hard wang is both the ultimate symbol of masculinity and essential for fun times in the theme park known as Bonking World. There’s also an unstated (but almost universal) assumption that both parties must orgasm or they may as well as have spent their time knitting instead. (No disrespect to knitting intended.)

For those reasons alone it was very refreshing to meet a hero unable to get an erection or have an orgasm, and to meet a couple sensible and inventive enough to work on making their sex lives satisfying without those things. What delighted me was the way Paton’s writing translated those differences into sex scenes that will leave readers reaching for their asbestos underwear. A sample:

[It's not so hard...]

Jul 23 2016 1:30pm

“The Bisexual Dilemma”: When Writing Becomes True to Life

Butterfly Tattoo: The Ultimate Edition

Today we're thrilled to welcome Deidre Knight (Butterfuly Tattoo). Deidre is well known in the industry as a literary agent, but has worn many hats, including the one she wears today as an author. Butterfly Tattoo features a bisexual character named Michael, and Deidre is here today to talk about how Michael's journey came to reflect her own. Thanks, Deidre!

I’m thrilled to be celebrating the release of my contemporary romance, Butterfly Tattoo: The Ultimate Edition. This reissue contains a deleted scene, reader questions, and a long interview about the book. Still, even as excited as I am to share my “baby” with readers anew, I have to make a totally frank admission: for whatever reason, I’ve struggled more with this particular blog post than any I can recall.

I’m certainly no stranger to writing blog posts, or (in my capacity as literary agent) pitch letters and synopses, which can put a real strain on one’s abilities as a writer. But this has been even more difficult. That’s probably because Butterfly Tattoo is an intensely personal book, even if it might not appear to be so at first glance. Then again, that’s one of the major themes of the novel: how large parts of a person’s identity—who they really are inside—can be obscured by the more glaringly obvious surface aspects.

The heroine, Rebecca O’Neill, bears scars all over her body from a stalker’s attack that occurred many years earlier. She’s ashamed of them, not only because she feels disfigured but, more important, because she fears they’ve redefined her against her will. Thanks to those scars, she has settled for a desk job behind the scenes of the entertainment industry.

[Don't settle...]

Jul 23 2016 11:00am

First Look: Jaci Burton’s Don’t Let Go (July 26, 2016)

Don't Let Go by Jaci Burton

Jaci Burton
Don't Let Go (Hope #6)
Jove / July 26, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

By their wares shall you know them? Megan’s pastries and Brady’s bikes are superlative manifestations of their passions and talents. Unfortunately, the undeniably gorgeous and sensitive Brady is a reluctant suitor. He’s haunted by memories of his dead brother in his hometown of Hope, Oklahoma. What will it take for Brady to break out of his self-imposed prison of work and loneliness?

Brady is isolated and glad to be so. But bakery owner Megan seems determined to break through his cone of silence. Her weapon of choice: fresh-baked goodies, accompanied by fresh-brewed coffee. As she says to Brady,

“Okay, I make a really great cup of coffee. I’m surprised you haven’t come into the bakery, since it’s so close to the auto shop. Most everyone who works around here pops in.”

It’s impossible for Brady to ignore the force that is Megan. He thinks to himself, “Man, she could really talk. He’d noticed that the couple of times they’d been together in social situations.” Conversation is something that Brady has really missed.

[Read more...]

Jul 22 2016 4:30pm

Yes, We Really Went There: Comments That Made Our Week

We at Heroes and Heartbreakers are so proud of and thankful for this wonderful community. Thank you for always adding a little extra sparkle to our week. In honor of Fan Friday, we want to give a special shoutout to a few of our favorite comments, and the readers behind them. We love your work!

We sometimes still feel too young, too, Kareni:

Kareni in Do You Think You Were Too Young When You Read Your First Romance?

I'm another one who started reading romances as a young teen, and I ended up with a 100 plus collection of Barbara Cartland romances. (And I'll admit that I'd be afraid to read any of her books today.) I don't think I was too young for the romances I read. Now ask me about the twisted pornographic book that was being passed around school when I was in 7th grade; I'm stilltoo young for that one as it made Fifty Shades of Grey look tame.

[Read more...]

Jul 22 2016 3:25pm

E.L. James on Instagram and a Wonder Woman Poster: 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 to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Fresh Outta the Oven

Wonder Woman official poster E.L. James is taking over the @fiftyshadesmovie Instagram to reveal pictures from the Fifty Shades movies filming in France. Remember, Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed are currently filming back-to-back with director James Foley; the second installment of Christian and Ana's story will hit theaters on February 10, 2017, while the trilogy's conclusion will follow the next year, on February 9, 2018.

Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman is ready to save the world in her new official poster, which reads simply: “Power. Grace. Wisdom. Wonder.” Diana Prince was the best part of Batman vs. Superman, so we're pleased as punch her standalone film's coming up.

The first Luke Cage trailer is here! Watch Mike Colter kick a lot of ass and then join us in our breathless anticipation of Luke “just getting started” on September 30. Anyone else hoping we'll see at least a cameo from Jessica Jones? As we've learned, Luke and Jessica make quite the power couple.

If Rami Malek could play another Mr. Robot character, it would be... Angela! Vulture has a theory about why that may be as we head deeper into Season 2 of the show...

[+Sarah Addison Allen & L.J. Shen deals...]

Jul 22 2016 2:30pm

First Look: Kelly Bowen’s A Duke to Remember (July 26, 2016)

A Duke to Remember by Kelly Bowen

Kelly Bowen
A Duke to Remember (Season of Scandal #2)
Forever / July 26, 2016 / $5.99 print & digital

A Duke to Remember is book two of Kelly Bowen’s s Season of Scandal series. I am in love with everything about this book. Right away, I’m curious why a duke disappears as a child, and why he doesn’t surface as an adult. I’m digging the bad-ass-ness of our heroine, and swooning over their love story of love-at-first-sight that only builds as their relationship develops.

Elise DeVries is a partner at Chegarre and Associates. Their mission is to fix problems in society that no one else is able to do. In this case, the Duchess of Ashland is locked away in Bedlam for lunacy. The Duchess’s daughter, Abigail, seeks out Chegarre and Associates to help remove her mother from this awful prison. This would be an easy problem to fix if it weren’t for the fact that the Duke has passed away and a scheming cousin Francis will stop at nothing to ensure the Duchy becomes his—including committing his aunt to Bedlam for believing her son still alive. And if Noah Ellery does indeed still exist, Francis is desperate enought to ensure Noah’s disappearance is permanent. If Elise can discover the new duke’s whereabouts and convince him to return to society, the duchess can be saved and the Duchy of Ashland remains under the control of the true Duke.

[Read more...]

Jul 22 2016 12:00pm

The CEO Daddy Next Door: Exclusive Excerpt

Karen Booth

The CEO Daddy Next Door by Karen Booth

He wants a mother for his child. She won't settle down. And now they're living together…

After one disastrous date, reality TV personality Ashley George and devastatingly handsome British billionaire Marcus Chambers are roommates! When a fire destroys her apartment, Ashley leans on her Manhattan neighbor for help—and soon finds herself falling for the father and his baby. But despite their off-the-charts attraction, Marcus only dates women who would be suitable mothers for his daughter. His free-spirited neighbor is completely unsuitable. So why can't he seem to keep her out of his bed…and out of his heart?

Get a sneak peek at Karen Booth's The CEO Daddy Next Door (available August 9 2016) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

In this scene, British gin maker Marcus and his neighbor, Ashley, are avoiding a meddlesome tabloid reporter by hitting the dance floor at the premiere party for Ashley’s wildly popular reality TV show, The Manhattan Matchmaker.

“I don’t want to be old-fashioned,” Marcus said, “but it is generally considered the man’s job to lead.”

Ashley wasn’t good at this part. Even at the age of seven, she’d been accused of trying to lead. “After all of that with Maryann, you’re going to give me a hard time about leading?”

He yanked her tightly against him, sending a surprising shock through her entire body. “Just relax.”

[Read the full The CEO Daddy Next Door excerpt...]

Jul 22 2016 11:00am

Friday Beefcake: A Love Letter to Our Potential TV Crushes

This weekend is San Diego Comic Con. It's always the perfect time to let our inner geek shine, but it's also the perfect time to pick our new TV boyfriends—here are a few from upcoming shows this fall who are definitely crushworthy.

Source: Luke Cage for Netflix

Dear Mike Colter,

We know you've graced our screens before, but this time you're going to be on your own, kicking ass and taking names as Luke Cage. Last time we were unprepared, but this time we're ready to be mesmerized by your disarming smile and incredible strength. We're also ready for any scene where you'll appear shirtless. 

At least we think we're ready.

[Fall is gonna be fun...]

Jul 22 2016 9:30am

First Look: Beth Harbison’s One Less Problem Without You (July 26, 2016)

One Less Problem Without You by Beth Harbison

Beth Harbison
One Less Problem Without You
St. Martin's Press / July 26, 2016 / $26.99 print, $12.99 digital

Meet Prinny, Chelsea and Diana. Prinny is the owner of Cosmos, a shop that sells crystals, potions, candles, and hope. It’s also a place where no one turns down a little extra-special cocktail that can work as a romance potion or heal a broken heart. But Prinny is in love with her married lawyer and she’ll need nothing short of magic to forget about him.

Chelsea works as a living statue at tourist sites around Washington, DC. It's a thankless job, but it helps pay the rent. That, and her part-time job at Cosmos. As her dream of becoming a successful actress starts to seem more remote and the possibility of being a permanently struggling one seems more realistic, Chelsea begins to wonder: at one point do you give up on your dreams? And will love ever be in the cards for her?

Diana Tiesman is married to Leif, a charismatic man who isn’t faithful. But no matter how many times he lets her down, Diana just can't let him go. She knows the only way she can truly breakaway is if she leaves and goes where he will never think to follow. So she ends up at Cosmos with Leif’s stepsister, where she makes her homemade teas and tinctures as she figures out whether she'd rather be lonely alone than lonely in love.

In Beth Harbison's One Less Problem Without You, three women suddenly find themselves together at their own very different crossroads. It will take hope, love, strength and a little bit of magic for them to find their way together.

There are all types of problems with love. There is not having someone to love; there is loving the wrong person; and there is obsessive, unhealthy love. In her latest book, One Less Problem Without You, Beth Harbison entertains readers as her three heroines, Prinny, Chelsea, and Diana, struggle with their own personal albatrosses in the game of love.

[The power of three...]

Jul 22 2016 8:02am

What’s the Most Unique Meet-Cute You’ve Read?

Over the Fence by Melanie Moreland

The meet-cute. It's the fantastic opportunity for a writer to introduce not only their two characters to each other, but for those two characters to make a lasting impression on the reader. As it's so perfectly described in the movie, The Holiday, two people go into a department to buy pajamas they've forgotten on a trip—the man says, I just need a bottom, the woman just needs a top. Et voila! The meet-cute is born. Recently while reading Over the Fence by Melanie Moreland, I “met” two characters who only know each other through the fence bordering their properties—think Norm Abrams from Home Improvement. The characters haven't even met yet face-to-face, and I'm already in love with them. What's the most unique meet-cute you've read?

Let us know in the comments!

Jul 21 2016 5:16pm

Sherrilyn Kenyon Deal & Book Soundtracks: 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 to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Son of No One by Sherrilyn KenyonDeal Alert: Sherrilyn Kenyon's Dark-Hunter novel Son of No One is on sale for $2.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | etc.* Are you a Menyon? Discover the 10 signs you're addicted to Kenyon's Dark-Hunter series.

Deal Alert: Jamie K. Schmidt's contemporary romance Life's a Beach is only $.99 in e-book at Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Amazon | etc.* How do you choose your beach reads? What even makes a book a “beach read,” anyway? 

Fresh Outta the Oven

Rachel Grant's Body of Evidence, coming to a theater near you? Maybe! Word is, producer Nancy Cartwright's company Spotted Cow Entertainment has secured the movie and TV rights to the romantic suspense novel about an archaeologist and the sexy U.S. attorney who aren't sure how to trust each other but who definitely want to jump each other's bones. Yum.

[+Book soundtracks & Luke Cage interview...]

Jul 21 2016 4:30pm

First Look at Tamsen Parker’s True North (July 25, 2016)

True North by Tamsen Parker

Tamsen Parker
True North (Compass #4)
Tamsen Parker / July 25, 2016 / $3.99 digital

Four months ago, Slade Lewis got to fulfill his wildest, long-repressed BDSM fantasies during a one-night stand. Since then, getting more has been the only thing on his mind.

When Slade manages to earn the keys to Reyes Walter’s kinky kingdom, he finds himself face-to-face with none other than Pressly Allwyn, the pearl-bedecked love of his life whom he pushed into divorce six years ago.

Now she’s back, and the fetish he was afraid would drive them apart instead draws them together. They indulge in their common kink together, but past hurts and old insecurities complicate any relationship outside their erotic exploits. Caught between the worlds of hot-button politics and even hotter bedroom games, Pressly and Slade will have to decide how far they’re willing to go for a second chance at happily ever after.

True North is the fourth book in Tamsen Parker’s The Compass series but can also be read as a standalone. This bewitching, humorous, erotically intense and emotional series introduced us to the hero -Slade Lewis- earlier and left readers with a less than stellar impression of him. Redemption of a character is a tricky trope to pull off.  You have to not only convince the reader the character is worth redemption but also give them a reasonable explanation for their previous behavior and a believable reason for the change. Finding the love of their lives isn’t always a good enough reason and when you make it a second chance romance, some readers will inevitably side eye the author and scoff BRING IT!

[Is he worth redeeming?]

Jul 21 2016 2:30pm

It’s Alive! Can Frankenstein Be Sexy?

One Night Steined by Daisy Harris

Editor’s Note: Yes, we know technically it should be Frankenstein’s Monster, but the terms have become interchangeable in the modern usage of the creature originated by Mary Shelley and for the purposes of this post, we’ll just use the term Frankenstein.

So let me clarify that we are not talking about zombies in this post, we’re talking about Frankenstein, patchwork people and people generally engineered or put together. The difference between a Frankenstein character and a zombie? The Frankenstein character has full use of his or her mental faculties, he or she does not eat the flesh of the living and finally, he or she has been brought to life or pieced together in some way.

[Not quite monster making...]

Jul 21 2016 12:30pm

The Essentials of Being a “Bad Bitch”

Bad Bitch by Christina Saunders

Today we're thrilled to welcome author Christina Saunders (Bad Bitch) to Heroes and Heartbreakers. Christina's Bad Bitch features a kick ass lawyer who isn't afraid to ask for what she wants—and she always gets it. Christina is here to talk about the tips for being a Bad Bitch—just like Evan! Thanks, Christina!

Evangeline Pallida is the quintessential bad bitch. That’s why she gets her own book, a hot guy, and a happy ending. So, you might be saying to yourself: “I want all those things. How do I become a bad bitch?” Lucky for you, I happen to know these secrets and will share them with you. Without further ado, the essentials of being a Bad Bitch are listed below.

[The Bad Bitch rules...]

Jul 21 2016 9:30am

First Look: Molly Harper’s Where the Wild Things Bite (July 26, 2016)

Where the Wild Things Bite by Molly Harper

Molly Harper
Where the Wild Things Bite (Half-Moon Hollow #8)
Pocket Books / July 26, 2016 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

Molly Harper does her best to make sure that you cross camping, and really anything involving airline flights, off your list of vacation destinations this year.   I am devastated by the way the great outdoors is portrayed here.  Well, actually not.  Camping and I go together like Peanut Butter and sardines.  Yes, just the idea of going camping makes me a bit queasy.  So I think Molly Harper does a wonderful job portraying what spending a week in the great outdoors means to me in her latest novel, Where the Wild Things Bite.

Anna Whitfield is agoraphobic, germaphobic, aviophobic, and at best, social awkward.  This bibliographer would have been happier staying in her quiet, little apartment but she was determined to return the rare and valuable book on shapeshifters to its owner, Jane Jamison-Nightengale.  She just wished taking the flight to Jane’s little town of Half-Moon Hollow would have allowed her to take a real airplane rather than the flying car that was sitting on the tarmac.  

An evil transportation-hating monster had devoured my plane.  And in its place, the monster had left a little, bite-size plane crumb behind.

[An excellent case against camping...]

Jul 21 2016 8:17am

Where Is Your Favorite Place to Get Books?

In New York City, there's a great bookstore called The Strand. It has thousands (okay, I'm spitballing here) of books within its walls—though a very tiny romance section. In California, The Ripped Bodice was kickstarted by many of those in the romance community as the first romance-only bookstore. Libraries, church book sales, your mom's closet... the possibilities are endless to get your fix for physical books. 


Do you have a go-to place to get books? Why do you like it?

Let us know in the comments!

Jul 20 2016 5:27pm

Fantasy Deals & Daveed Diggs’ Next Role: 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 to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Rescue Me by Jaci BurtonDeal Alert: Jaci Burton's Rescue Me is on sale for $.99 in e-book at Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Amazon | etc.* Burton certainly knows her hot heroes—treat yourself to some specially curated Vee-Day Beefcake this Hump Day.

Deal Alert: Kaitlyn Davis' Beauty's-the-cursed-one fantasy romance Withering Rose is only $.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | etc.* You may have noticed the book headlines Maggie Boyd's recently published post “Magic Hinges to a Magical World: Fantasy Romances You Should Be Reading.”

Deal Alert: Kristen Callihan's Darkest London novella Entwined is discounted to $.99 in e-book at iBooks | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | etc.* Callihan's series is another one on the list of fantasy romances you should be reading, and now that the last Darkest London book is in stores, you can feel free to load up your e-reader and prepare to binge-read.

[+Hamilton's Daveed Diggs joins the cast of...]

Jul 20 2016 3:00pm

Tackling Disabilities in Historical Settings: Joanna Lowell’s Dark Season

Dark Season by Joanna Lowell

Tainted. Degraded. Doomed. Doctors told Ella Arlington that her epilepsy would prevent her from living a normal life. When her cousin tries to put her in an institution, she flees to London, determined to control her own destiny. But while at a seance, Ella's epileptic fit is mistaken for spiritual possession. Loath to reveal her scandalous condition, she goes along with the misperception, and soon finds herself attracting the attention of a devilishly handsome viscount determined to keep the past buried.

Viscount Isidore Blackwood's fiancee died with secrets he's vowed to keep, but nothing could have prepared him for the arrival of a mysterious woman who's rumored to have contacted her ghost. He doesn't believe for a moment that Ella possesses supernatural powers. Her presence, however, shakes him to his core and when he accuses Ella of being a con artist, sparks unexpectedly ignite between them.

When some surprising truths come to light about Phillipa's death, Isidore concocts a plan to stage a spectacle of a séance for the ton with Ella's help. Their devil's pact might just flush out a killer, but will Isidore let his fury and guilt consume his own soul in the process? And can Ella trust him enough to gamble on a future she never thought she could have?

I’ve read several romances that featured a disabled heroine–blindness, deafness, a clubbed foot–but I’ve never read one whose heroine suffered from epilepsy. It is a difficult disease with which to cope–especially in an historical setting where there was incomplete medical knowledge surrounding the condition. Dark Season by Joanna Lowell tackles this demanding subject with sensitivity, taking Ella Arlington from a place of fear, melancholy and resignation to hope, joy and love.

[Read more...]