<i>Christmas Brides</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Christmas Brides: Exclusive Excerpt Alexandra Hawkins, Suzanne Enoch, Elizabeth Essex and Valerie Bowman "She rushed up to him and brushed a kiss against his mouth." <i>Gentlemen Prefer Curves</i>: Excerpt Gentlemen Prefer Curves: Excerpt Sugar Jamison "It was him. Carter Lancaster. Her first and only love." <i>Night Sky</i>: Excerpt Night Sky: Excerpt Suzanne Brockmann and Melanie Brockmann "Oh God, I asked him, did I make you kiss me?" <i>Sweeter Than Sin</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Sweeter Than Sin: Exclusive Excerpt Shiloh Walker She can’t ignore the urgent heat between them
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Addicted Authors and Characters
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Benedict Cumberbatch's Darcy Scene
Megan Frampton
Tue
Aug 26 2014 5:15pm

First Look: Elizabeth Vail’s The Duke of Snow and Apples (August 26, 2014)

The Duke of Snow and Apples by Elizabeth VailElizabeth Vail
The Duke of Snow and Apples
Entangled / August 26, 2014 / $0.99 digital

Frederick Snow, first footman, is the perfect servant: efficient, hardworking, and completely bereft of emotion. Unbeknownst to his employers, he’s the lost Duke of Snowmont, on the run from a suspicious stepfather and a powerful magic he can only control by burying his passions beneath his frosty demeanor. He's managed to hide behind his carefully ordered life until an impertinent miss arrives and challenges everything he thought he wanted.

If Charlotte Erlwood wants to land a wealthy, titled husband at her great aunt’s house party, she has to stop losing her temper – especially with inordinately handsome footmen. Perhaps if she recruits Frederick for her matrimonial schemes, she'll be able to direct her attention toward suitable single noblemen and away from inappropriate dalliances. But Frederick’s frigid control is no match for Charlotte’s irrepressible spirit, and her passionate kiss could summon the darker side of his magic...or wake his heart from its frozen sleep.

Elizabeth Vail's The Duke of Snow and Apples is an alternate-reality romance where magic is the norm and the gulf between the Pure-Blooded and Underfolk is even greater than that of your basic Regency-set Historical.

[Magic conflict!...]

Mon
Mar 3 2014 2:45pm

Love Under the Big Top: Circus-Themed Romances

The Night Circus by Erin MorgensternCircus-themed romances are few and far between, but a few stand out as literary gems—and then there are some that would make the Ringling Brothers blush.

The first book that stands out in most people’s minds is The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, which is a Romeo and Juliet story with dueling magicians, Celia and Marco. You’ve got magic, history, and a rich backstory, all of which has put this book on the best-seller list.

A common theme in circus romances is the idea of the hero or heroine running away to look for a fresh new start. The nature of the circus is by and large nomadic, the performers and workers literally pick up and go on to the next destination. For many heroines (and in a few cases a hero), this presents a unique opportunity to start fresh with a group that they want to be a part of.

For fans of young adult, Kendall Ryan writing as Ryann Kerekes presents The Cirque about a good girl ballerina named Ariel and a bad boy knife thrower named Gabriel. For those of you who found the knife throwing scene in Divergent suspenseful, basically take the sexual tension between Tris and Four, add the circus to it and you’ve got The Cirque. Ariel is a good girl looking for adventure while Gabriel is running away from his problems. The Cirque is a tightly written young adult novel that presents the circus as a backdrop for angst and romance.

[Run away and join the circus...]

Sun
Jan 26 2014 1:00pm
Excerpt

More than Magic: Exclusive Excerpt

Donna June Cooper

More than Magic by Donna June CooperDEA agent Nick McKenzie is sure magic exists—a dangerous drug called Smoky Mountain Magic that’s wreaking havoc on the streets of Atlanta. He’s also sure that locating and eliminating the source could mean his death.

When he arrives undercover on Woodruff Mountain, the beautiful owner’s anxious attempts to scare him off tell him something’s afoot, and it’s not her secret patch of a rare, ancient species of ginseng.

As her dream of seeking medicinal plants in the Amazon fades into the distance, Grace Woodruff struggles to come to terms with an inherited magical gift she didn’t want, and searches desperately for the meaning behind her late grandfather’s final, cryptic message.

The last thing she needs underfoot is a handsome, enigmatic writer recovering from a recent illness. Until an accidental touch unleashes a stunning mystical force and Grace senses the wrath of a malicious blight at the heart of the mountain. Now she must choose between her need to hide her gift from the world…and her desire to save Nick’s life.

Warning: This book contains a fiery redhead whose magic cannot be contained and a handsome DEA agent whose final case might give him a second chance at life.

Get a sneak peek of Donna June Cooper's More Than Magic (available February 4, 2014) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Pooka’s deep warning bark outside the lab door first alerted Grace, then the gate alarm bleated twice, bringing a muttered protest from the chicken house. She glanced at the clock. Good grief. Who on earth would be coming in this late? And using the gate code?

She yanked off her lab coat and hair cover, and grabbed her jacket from the rack. Had she forgotten something? Or someone? It was possible, given her state of mind of late. But just in case, she decided to head for the house to get her shotgun.

Perhaps it was a late delivery, or pickup. She hoped it wasn’t Eddie giving up early on his long-delayed fishing trip. Or Ouida deciding she really couldn’t get along with her younger sister for two weeks. Or a guest for the cabins. Please let it not be that.

[Log in or register to read the full excerpt of More than Magic...]

Sun
Jan 12 2014 3:30pm

First Look: Sarah Addison Allen’s Lost Lake (January 21, 2014)

Lost Lake by Sarah Addison AllenSarah Addison Allen
Lost Lake
St. Martin's Press / January 21, 2014 / $25.99 print, $12.99 digital

The first time Eby Pim saw Lost Lake, it was on a picture postcard. Just an old photo and a few words on a small square of heavy stock, but when she saw it, she knew she was seeing her future.

That was half a life ago. Now Lost Lake is about to slip into Eby’s past. Her husband George is long passed. Most of her demanding extended family are gone. All that’s left is a once-charming collection of lakeside cabins succumbing to the Southern Georgia heat and damp, and an assortment of faithful misfits drawn back to Lost Lake year after year by their own unspoken dreams and desires.

It’s a lot, but not enough to keep Eby from relinquishing Lost Lake to a developer with cash in hand, and calling this her final summer at the lake. Until one last chance at family knocks on her door.

Lost Lake is where Kate Pheris spent her last best summer at the age of twelve, before she learned of loneliness, and heartbreak, and loss. Now she’s all too familiar with those things, but she knows about hope too, thanks to her resilient daughter Devin, and her own willingness to start moving forward. Perhaps at Lost Lake her little girl can cling to her own childhood for just a little longer… and maybe Kate herself can rediscover something that slipped through her fingers so long ago.

One after another, people find their way to Lost Lake, looking for something that they weren’t sure they needed in the first place: love, closure, a second chance, peace, a mystery solved, a heart mended. Can they find what they need before it’s too late?

When you open a story by Sarah Addison Allen, you just know that you are going to be charmed with her imaginative, lyrical, and magical storytelling. Part of the anticipation is wondering what wondrous notions she will have concocted— from her imperfect but delightful characters to her beguiling mystical touches.

[Let's dive into Lost Lake...]

Mon
Nov 18 2013 2:00pm

First Look: Kathryne Kennedy’s Everlasting Enchantment (December 3, 2013)

Everlasting Enchantment by Kathryne KennedyKathryne Kennedy
Everlasting Enchantment
Sourcebooks Casablanca / December 3, 2013 / $7.99 print & digital

Sir Gareth Solimere, knight of King Arthur's Round Table, has been trapped inside Merlin's relic for centuries, cursed until he finds his one true love. When he finally finds her in the unexpected form of a beautiful were-panther named Millicent Pantere, he has to use all of his charms to try to make her love him in return. But if he manages this feat, will he finally be free to live a normal life?

Fourth in the Relics of Merlin series, Everlasting Enchantment by Kathryne Kennedy explores the initially reluctant attraction that were-panther Millicent Pantere feels for Sir Gareth Solimere, a medieval knight trapped within a magical bracelet. If you’re new to the series, as I was, there’s enough background given to follow the story, though I was a bit confused as to how historical it was meant to be; the English aristocracy in this world holds a very different place due to their magical abilities, and seems to keep itself much more separate from the non-magical classes than in our world. For instance, there’s an Underworld that is restricted to magic users. Given the existence there of a historical Merlin, and Sir Gareth’s chivalric behavior, it was clear the series takes place in a secondary world rather than our own, with the King Arthur of literature rather than a historically-based version.

[The legend's always better than the reality...]

Mon
Nov 11 2013 3:06pm

Exclusive Cover Reveal: Jenn Bennett’s Grim Shadows!

Grim Shadows by Jenn BennettToday we're pleased to reveal the cover of Jenn Bennett's Grim Shadows, another book set in her Roaring Twenties world. A Swedish archaelogist meets a spirit-hearing curator? Sounds fun! Here's the blurb:

It’s the roaring twenties in foggy San Francisco. Prohibition is on, inhibitions are low, and dark magic is rolling into town…

Archaeologist Lowe Magnusson is packing something everyone wants. The djed amulet, a priceless Egyptian artifact, will fetch Lowe a hefty paycheck from one of San Francisco’s wealthiest. But when the handsome Swede runs into his patron’s uptight daughter, what he once considered easy money becomes a maddening complication…

Cursed with deadly spirits as her constant companions, curator Hadley Bacall must keep calm to hold her dangerous specters at bay and prevent them from lashing out at anything—or anyone. Trouble is, Lowe is driving her crazy, but her father needs the artifact he’s transporting. While Hadley can feel the amulet’s power, she can’t fathom the destruction—or the desire—it’s about to stir up.

Grim Shadows will be available on June 3, 2014.

Sat
Nov 9 2013 1:00pm
Excerpt

Everlasting Enchantment: Exclusive Excerpt

Kathryne Kennedy

Everlasting Enchantment by Kathryne Kennedy

Power Magic is Afoot

Millicent Pantere has lived her entire life in the notorious London Underground. She cares nothing for the problems of the crown or the intrigues of society. But the ladies of the realm are acting strangely, and Millicent is coerced into tracking down the rumors of a mysterious man—a magic man who comes in the night and disappears at dawn.

And So the Hunt Begins

Millicent's search leads her to one of Merlin's legendary relics and the seductive knight whose fate is bound up with it. Centuries ago, Sir Gareth Solimere made the mistake of seducing the wrong woman, and he has been trapped ever since by a diabolical curse. He's looking for the one who can break the enchantment—but in this world, there is no love without betrayal...

Get a sneak peek at Kathryne Kennedy's Everlasting Enchantments (available December 3, 2013) with an exclusive excerpt from Chapter 1.

Chapter 1
London, 1839
Where magic has never died…

The Duke of Ghoulston’s coach rocked to a stop in front of Buckingham Palace and Millicent Pantere growled low in her throat. A throng of finely dressed lords and ladies made their way beneath magical shimmering arches of color into the massive double doors of the palace to young Queen Victoria’s ball.

“I don’t belong here,” murmured Millicent as anger curled through her belly. Why couldn’t the duke have ordered her to fight a legion of ogres armed to the teeth? Now that she could have managed with relish. But no, he had to send her up against the cold eyes and knowing whispers of the nobility. As if she had any hope of fooling them into thinking she was a lady.

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

Tue
Oct 22 2013 9:30am

First Look: Nora Roberts’s Dark Witch (October 29, 2013)

Dark Witch by Nora RobertsNora Roberts
Dark Witch
Berkley / October 29, 2013 / $17.00 print, $9.99 digital

With indifferent parents, Iona Sheehan grew up craving devotion and acceptance. From her maternal grandmother, she learned where to find both: a land of lush forests, dazzling lakes, and centuries-old legends.

Ireland.

County Mayo, to be exact. Where her ancestors’ blood and magic have flowed through generations—and where her destiny awaits.

Iona arrives in Ireland with nothing but her Nan’s directions, an unfailingly optimistic attitude, and an innate talent with horses. Not far from the luxurious castle where she is spending a week, she finds her cousins, Branna and Connor O’Dwyer. And since family is family, they invite her into their home and their lives.

When Iona lands a job at the local stables, she meets the owner, Boyle McGrath. Cowboy, pirate, wild tribal horsemen, he’s three of her biggest fantasy weaknesses all in one big, bold package.

Iona realizes that here she can make a home for herself—and live her life as she wants, even if that means falling head over heels for Boyle. But nothing is as it seems. An ancient evil has wound its way around Iona’s family tree and must be defeated. Family and friends will fight with each other and for each other to keep the promise of hope—and love—alive…

Nora Roberts’s newest book, Dark Witch, takes readers on a trip to the land of full of green fields, old ruins, and lots of magick. This is not the first time that Nora Roberts has presented us with a trilogy which will build up to epic battle of good vs. evil, nor is it the first time she has traveled the scenic back roads of Ireland, but Dark Witch is as much a story about the connection of family (“blood talks to blood”) as it is a story of witches and magic.

[Witches and magic and romance, oh my...]

Wed
Oct 9 2013 12:00pm
Excerpt

Captive: Exclusive Excerpt

A. D. Robertson

Twenty-five-year-old Tristan Doran enjoys a life of incredible power and privilege. As a direct descendant of the Keepers—witches who have embraced dark magic—he defers to no one but his overlord, Lord Bosque Mar. For most of his life, Tristan has been kept out of the centuries-old Witches War, his bloodline too valuable to risk in battle.

But when a beautiful, young human Searcher named Sarah is captured and made a prisoner in his Irish castle, Tristan’s infatuation with her flings him headlong into the fray. Captive and captor, unable to contain their longing, embark on a passionate, forbidden romance together—only to learn that their love is at the heart of a prophecy predicting the downfall of the Keepers’ ages-old reign.

Captive explores the darker side of the richly imagined Nightshade universe, a fantasy world of powerful dark witches, shape-shifting wolf warriors, and fascinating history. The first of three erotic novels, Captive delves deeply into the fiery, illicit romance of two young lovers whose very desires invite their doom.

Get a sneak peek of A.D. Robertson's Captive (available October 22, 2013) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene. A. D. Robertson is also the author of the young adult Nightshade series (as Andrea Cremer). Captive marks the first adult book in the forbidden (and sexier!) side of the Nightshade series.

Sarah hovered just outside his door. She didn’t want to stop talking with Tristan, but she questioned the wisdom of so willingly accepting an invitation into his bedroom. She stood there, looking at the open door.

It’s just a room. A room where there happens to be a bed. No need to read anything more into the situation. God, I’m terrible at lying to myself, Sarah thought as she went through the door. No matter how much she tried to convince herself otherwise, she was well aware of the thrill she felt at being invited into Tristan’s bedroom and how much she wanted to be there.

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

Sat
Aug 24 2013 2:30pm

First Look: Lisa Van Allen’s The Wishing Thread (August 27, 2013)

The Wishing Thread by Lisa Van AllenLisa Van Allen
The Wishing Thread
Ballantine / August 27, 2013 / $15.00 print, $9.99 digital

The Van Ripper women have been the talk of Tarrytown, New York, for centuries. Some say they’re angels; some say they’re crooks. In their tumbledown “Stitchery,” not far from the stomping grounds of the legendary Headless Horseman, the Van Ripper sisters—Aubrey, Bitty, and Meggie—are said to knit people’s most ardent wishes into beautiful scarves and mittens, granting them health, success, or even a blossoming romance. But for the magic to work, sacrifices must be made—and no one knows that better than the Van Rippers.

When the Stitchery matriarch, Mariah, dies, she leaves the yarn shop to her three nieces. Aubrey, shy and reliable, has dedicated her life to weaving spells for the community, though her sisters have long stayed away. Bitty, pragmatic and persistent, has always been skeptical of magic and wants her children to have a normal, nonmagical life. Meggie, restless and free-spirited, follows her own set of rules. Now, after Mariah’s death forces a reunion, the sisters must reassess the state of their lives even as they decide the fate of the Stitchery. But their relationships with one another—and their beliefs in magic—are put to the test. Will the threads hold?

I am not an especially crafty person, but I am fascinated by the creative process whether it be sewing, cooking, or knitting. I also adore books around folklore and legends. So the synopsis of Lisa Van Allen's The Wishing Thread proved to be irresistible.

Aubrey, Bitty, and Meggie’s ancestor Helen's first attempt at stitchery magic arose because of her foolish husband. The British forces were holed up in Stoney Point, an almost impenetrable fort, especially to the Carolinians in the valley. But if the British aren’t stopped, they then would be able to proceed up the Hudson River. If they took the Hudson, they then would control the Northeast.

[Then her husband had a (not-so) bright idea...]

Mon
Aug 19 2013 12:00pm
Excerpt

License to Love: Exclusive Excerpt

Gina Robinson

License to Love by Gina Robinson

Rock Powers is one of the most successful magicians in Vegas for a reason—he creates illusions too spectacular to believe. But his former assistant, gorgeous Lani Silkwater, pulled off the greatest trick of all: disappearing into thin air the day after they were married. Two years later, Rock can’t resist a clue to Lani’s whereabouts—or the outlandish plan Lani and her mysterious boss propose, if it means a chance to win her back for good...  

Working as a magician’s assistant was one of Lani’s strangest undercover assignments, but she never imagined it would be so dangerous—to her heart. Leaving Rock was the right thing for both of them, but with a terrorist group closing in on Vegas, Rock’s talent with sleight of hand is imperative. To save them both, Lani must reveal secrets she’s kept for years, and one of them is how much she loves the sexy magician who stole her heart…

Get a sneak peek of Gina Robinson's License to Love (available August 27, 2013) with an exclusive excerpt of the Prologue and Chapters 1 & 2.

Prologue
A luxury hotel on the strip
Las Vegas, Nevada

Disappearing on her husband in the middle of an expensive Vegas magic act would be considered rude. By almost everyone. Especially given that undercover CIA agent Lani Silkwater was performing on stage with her husband of less than a day, premier illusionist Rock Powers. As his exceptionally able-bodied assistant.

She’d shown him just how able-bodied too many times to count, on stage and off. But particularly last night, on their wedding night, when she’d played contortionist just for him. The memory should have made her blush, if she’d been prone to blushing.

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

Wed
Jun 26 2013 11:04am

Exclusive Cover Reveal: Lucy March’s That Touch of Magic!

That Touch of Magic by Lucy MarchToday we're delighted to reveal the cover for Lucy March's That Touch of Magic, and it is indeed magical—what could be more wonderful than a librarian with special powers? (Not the kind that will shush you!)

Read on for the official description:

Stacy Easter has seen better days. Being a librarian is a labor of love—if only paying her bills were half as much fun. What’s a single, bookish beauty in sleepy Nodaway Falls, New York, supposed to do?

To make ends meet, Stacy decides to develop her special…powers. Everyone can use a touch of magic now and then, right? Soon she’s got clients lining up to receive her signature potions—until a few of them go awry. Meanwhile, her own life has just taken a storybook turn: Leo North, the official One Who Got Away, is back in town. Stacy’s best friends Peach and Liv are more concerned about the state of her heart than the side effects of a few rogue magic spells. But someone with dark intentions is crossing magical wires all over Nodaway Falls, and those closest to Stacy are at risk. Can Stacy conjure up a way out of this mess with her life—and maybe even her love life—intact?

That Touch of Magic will be available on January 28, 2014.

And don't miss Lucy March's first Nodaway Falls novel, A Little Night Magic!

Sun
Jun 23 2013 12:00pm
Excerpt

The Outcast Prince: Exclusive Excerpt

Shona Husk

Caspian Mort can feel the history in anything he touches, a gift he inherited from his father, the Crown Prince of Annwyn. Devastated over his ex-wife’s infidelity, Caspian has withdrawn from human contact except when working as an antiques dealer.

While assessing the contents of the historic Callaway House he encounters the beautiful Lydia Callaway and senses that her home is haunted by a banished fairy. But what does the dangerous exile want? Unbeknownst to Lydia, she’s the owner of the last remaining portal to Annwyn—a mirror hidden somewhere in the house.

To keep Lydia safe, Caspian will have to divulge the secrets of his heritage, and risk losing his heart again.

Get a sneak peek of Shona Husk's The Outcast Prince (available July 2, 2013) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.
 

 “Are you sure you don’t mind coming over after work?”

“Not at all.” He gave her a rare smile. “You don’t mind me being here?”

Lydia shook her head. No, she couldn’t imagine any woman kicking him out. Yet one had cast him off. What was his flaw? Was he messy? Refused to do housework? Watched sports all weekend? Her gaze skimmed over his body—it had felt pretty good when she’d kissed him. Maybe he played golf all weekend. “More of the same tomorrow?”

[Yes, please! Log in or register to read the full excerpt of The Outcast Prince...]