<i>Back to Before</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Back to Before: Exclusive Excerpt Tracy Solheim "He was grinning now, sexy laugh lines fanning out from his eyes..." <i>Foster Justice</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Foster Justice: Exclusive Excerpt Colleen Shannon "His mind might find her repulsive but his body sure as heck didn’t." Now Win This!: <i>Fifty Shades</i> Poster Now Win This!: Fifty Shades Poster Team H & H You've seen the poster, now here's a chance to have your own! <i>Marked</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Marked: Exclusive Excerpt Rebecca Zanetti "Heat pooled at the apex of her legs, stunning her with need..."
From The Blog
December 22, 2014
2014 Christmas Novellas from Shalvis, Burton, and More!
Tiffany Tyer
December 20, 2014
3 Harlequin Presents Authors Who Get it Right
John Jacobson
December 19, 2014
Friday Beefcake: Silver Bells Foxes
Team H & H
December 18, 2014
I Dream of Genies in Romance Novels
Sahara Hoshi
December 18, 2014
Happy Parental Pairs in Historical Romance
Showing posts by: Jennifer Proffitt click to see Jennifer Proffitt's profile
Dec 21 2014 2:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Gilmore Girls’s Luke and Lorelai

Recently, we had author AJ Pine (aka Amy Pine) on the site talking about her everlasting love of all things Gilmore Girls. There is a lot to love, like the books, Stars Hollow, and, of course, the men! Today, we'll be talking about that last one. While there's a lot of contension over Rory's best boyfriend—Pine thought the title belonged to Jess, while my roommate solidly sided with Logan—there's less contension over who Lorelai should end up with, because the obvious answer is Luke Dane. I watched Gilmore Girls live, but never watched every episode. Thanks to Netflix, this fall I spent many a day (okay, it was like a week and maybe a weekend in which I did nothing else) catching up on the series and it affirmed for me that while the show does have flaws, Luke and Lorelai are not one of them.

First, it started with coffee...

[But not like a coffee date...]

Dec 14 2014 3:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Sherlock Holmes and John Watson (JohnLock)

I love Sherlock Holmes. I will take him in every iteration—BBC's modernization with Benedict Cumberbatch, Robert Downey Jr. in a historical action version, and Johnny Lee Miller in Elementary, or The Great Moust Detective. What I have loved even more is tracking the allusions to a relationship that is slightly more domestic and less platonic between Holmes and his faithful friend, John Watson.

In canon, there are hints that this domestic duo, were a little bit more than just roommates and partners in crime...partners in life maybe?

BBC's Sherlock has been a particular favorite of mine—I'm a big Doctor Who fan and I feel Stephen Moffat, the writer of both, brings intelligence and hijinx to both. In Sherlock, the hints of a relationship are a lot more overt than in more historical adaptations. Sherlock and Watson, no matter what iteration we find them in, do tend to act more like an old married couple than two male roommates/crime fighters.

So this week's Shipping Sunday is going to focus on that tension between these two and all the times that Sherlock and Watson acted or were mistaken for a couple. #SecretlyMarried anyone?

Dec 12 2014 1:30pm

25 Romances of Christmas: Holiday Romance Recommendations, Part 2

The Keepers: Christmas in Salem by Heather Graham, Deborah LeBlanc, Kathleen Pickering, and Beth CiottaWhile the holidays are creeping in, it might be just the time to start in on that list—the books on your To Be Read list, that is. Over the next few weeks Phoebe Chase and Jennifer Proffitt will be delivering a little something naughty and nice in the form of the 25 Christmas books you should be adding to your wish list. See what they recommended in Part 1.

The Keepers: Christmas in Salem by Heather Graham, Deborah LeBlanc, Kathleen Pickering, Beth Ciotta

Vampires, witches, elementals, and selkies co-mingling in Salem, Mass.? No, I don’t have the wrong holiday, this really is a Christmas romance. Total darkness has engulfed Salem as Christmas nears. Four authors spin connected stories centered around four cousins who are Keepers, humans charged with overseeing a particular supernatural community. They put their hearts on the line to save their beloved town from an encroaching evil that threatens Salem and beyond. I really loved the way this anthology connected all the stories with one central holiday plot and how each novella furthered the story, bringing us closer to the happily ever.

[We like getting closer to that HEA...]

Dec 7 2014 2:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Friends’ Monica and Chandler (Mondler)

Everyone loves the friends to lovers trope and no one more than the writers behind Friends. In January, viewers will have a chance to relive all of the Friends goodness, or discover it, when Friends goes to Netflix! For me, Ross and Rachel were great to watch—Ross was always so bumbling, and even Rachel was bumbling in her own way—but it was the “side” couple of Monica and Chandler that held my interest and my love.

[So what did you love about them?]

Dec 4 2014 4:30pm

25 Romances of Christmas: Holiday Romance Recommendations

While the holidays are creeping in, it might be just the time to start in on that list—the books on your To Be Read list, that is. Over the next few weeks Phoebe Chase and Jennifer Proffitt will be delivering a little something naughty and nice in the form of the 25 holiday/seasonal romances you should be adding to your wish list. Read more suggestions in Part 2.

Frozen by Meljean Brook

If you love Norse mythology and are missing Loki, this book is perfect for you. A standalone novella, Frozen is short, sweet, sexy, and offers a great new world with a hero whose “curse” we might not mind helping him break. I haven’t read a lot of Meljean Brook, but this book has me sold on trying even more. Our hero thinks he’s a monster, and our heroine has been set up with him—they’ll both learn by the end that while there are monsters in this world, the hero certainly isn’t one of them.

Lumberfox by Ava Lovelace

Set in the Snowjam of Atlanta from January 2014, this wonderful Geekrotica novella isn’t expressly Christmas, but is certainly a great book to get you in the mood before the season of giving and cheer truly kicks off. Plus, Lumberfox is the best term ever—a hot geeky, man with sartorial lumberjack style, cultivated facial hair, tattoos, and specialized tastes. I fell in love with this quick read and can’t wait to get more!

[Let the era of the Lumberfox begin...]

Nov 28 2014 2:00pm

Howl at the Harvest Moon: November 2014 Paranormal Romance Recommendations

Heart Fire by Robin D. OwensThis month, the paranormal world has offered up great romances that are sure to please any reader. Whether you’re looking for love amongst the stars, a beastly shapeshifter looking for his mate, or a keeper of a demon finally getting to be touched, I’ve got you covered!

Love…in Space!

Heart Fire by Robin D. Owens

On the planet Celta, accepting a HeartMate can be the greatest challenge in the universe

Antenn, an architect hired to build a cathedral in Druida City, dares not think of his HeartMate. Even though he yearns for her, he’s taken steps to ensure she will be forever unknown to him. After all, how could he, a commoner who grew up in the slums, the brother of a murderer, be worthy of any woman?

Tiana, a priestess, has her own fears about being a HeartMate. She's watched her friends struggle with such a stormy destiny. She's sure her HeartMate has never claimed her due to a terrible scandal involving her Family, and she's set aside hopes for love.

Antenn's gotten the commission of his life. The cathedral will make him famous, but more, it will last for ages and prove to others he can contribute to Celta...if the controversial structure isn't destroyed while being built. Tiana, too, is an integral part of this process, but the villain who wrecked her Family is ready with firebombs. Can they trust each other in dangerous circumstances to succeed...and to love?

Antenn and Tiana have great tension—both over the impending building plans, and of the sexual nature. They have pasts they’re trying to hide, and the world of Celta offers a great backdrop for them to face those issues on their way to a happily ever after.

[See what else is new and noteworthy in paranormal romance...]

Nov 21 2014 8:12am

“I Could Be the Ham in That Man Sandwich”: 3 Reasons We Already Love Pitch Perfect 2

  • All the Fat Amy We Can Handle—She's the naughty Australian best friend we always wanted, and says all the things we're thinking!
  • Great Music—Raise your hand if you tried to learn the “Cups (When I'm Gone)” song after seeing the first Pitch Perfect! We imagine it'll be more of the same in the sequel.
  • To Sing Love Songs We Need Love First, Right?—Fat Amy and Bumper Alan, Fat Amy and The Green Bay Packers (aka the Man Sandwich), Becca and Jesse. We're sure there will be plenty of other ships for us to set sail on!

What are your three reasons?

Romance Addict Confession: I've already watched the trailer five times, as of posting. How about you guys?

Nov 17 2014 2:30pm

“I Like You Better Sober”: Shipping Haymitch/Effie (Hayffie) in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay—Part 1 Clip

Earlier today, Yahoo shared a clip from The Hunger Games: Mockingjay—Part 1 in which Haymitch asked the group for a time Katniss Everdeen genuinely moved them. Effie, in a much more reserved look than we're used to seeing her, immediately offered the first time she met Katniss—when she volunteered to take her sister's place in The Games. While the clip gave us a chance to touch on the moments when Katniss moved us too—when she sang to Rue would make it to my list as well—the main thing that caught my attention was the flirtation going on between Effie and Haymitch.

I've always thought Effie and Haymitch would be perfect together—she needs to be loosened up a little, and Haymitch...well, he needs a complete overhaul, but who can blame him? The two have always had great chemistry and a spark—whether it's the approach they have toward Peeta and Katniss, or the coming rebellion, they can find something to argue about. But let's face it, that's all just foreplay, right?

Elizabeth Banks, who playes Effie, also agrees! In a 2012 interview, Banks said Haymitch and Effie had some serious sexual tension and would be “fun in the sack” together. Now, in Mockingjay: Part 1 these two will be on the same side...and maybe they'll find the time to get to know one another in between fights—both their own and in the rebellion.

So, have you always liked them together like me, did this clip sell you on their relationship, or are you still thinking they're just good foils for one another and that should be it? Let us know in the comments!

Nov 7 2014 2:00pm

4 Ways Tom Hiddleston (Not Romance Novels) Ruined My Expectations of Men, or What Men Can Learn from Heroes

Hi, my name’s Jenn and I’m a single, romance novel addict.

I start this post like an AA meeting, because in a lot of ways, once you get a Visa for Romancelandia, it often seems like you’re part of a club…or to outsiders, like there’s something wrong with you. “Well, haven’t you read (insert book from Oprah’s Book Club or latest NYT Non-Romance Bestseller),” is a phrase that many of us might be familiar with, as people in our lives attempt to “widen our horizons” or “break us” of the bad habits that reading romance has obviously engendered within us. Because, of course, let’s ignore the fact that Romance, as a genre, is one of the highest grossing in the industry, bringing in billions of dollars every year. Let us all also forget for one moment, that romance readers—sweeping generalization, but one I don’t think you’ll mind me making—are some of the most voracious readers out there (see: highest grossing genre, above). However, we still get minimized, infantilized, and generally dumbed-down by the general populace, many of which I would also guess a) are secretly also romance readers, and b) couldn’t spout as many facts on Regency England (or any other given topic explored in many romance novels) as a romance reader can. In fact, I challenge the Average Joe to even know when the Regency period was.

[Class, what's the answer...?]

Nov 6 2014 4:45pm

The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies Trailer: Dissecting Kili and Tauriel

There's this little movie coming out this season, you may have heard of it. The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies? Yeah, we're obsessed. The action looks amazing, the cinematography breathtaking—Lee Pace and Orlando Bloom look flawless—but where do our wandering eyes become the most captivated? Around minute 1:43 when Kili slips something into Tauriel's hand and they share A Look. Tauriel looks a little sad, deeply touched, and yet so hopeful! As does Kili, who peers up at his lady love with so much wonder! Yes, we got ALL that from a two second clip.

If we had to guess we'd say that what Kili gave Tauriel would be none other than the stone that brought the two together in the first place—remember when he played with it in the Elvish Prison. What do you think the fate of Kili and Tauriel is? Jackson and gang set up a pretty fine romance (and possible love triangle?) when they introduced Tauriel to the world of Middle Earth, but could he have given us hope, only to take it away?

Meanwhile, former H&H-er Christopher Morgan weighed in on the epic bromance that is Bilbo and Thorin. Bilbo/Thorin 4ever, anyone? Chris also gave us this play-by-play of what he thinks the ultimate fate will be for Tauriel/Kili, and the ramifications it'll have:

She(Tauriel)’ll  go to Tharundil and sue for peace. Goblins are going to show up, she will get downed by big bad White Orc, Legolas will avenge. Find Kili’s stone, and something will happen to soften his heart so that he can find his one true love in Gimli.

Is he too cynical or do you think it will play out that way, too? We know how this story ends—at least with how it pertains to Bilbo, The Ring, and Middle Earth—but it's all about the journey, isn't it? Did you swoon as much as we did over those two seconds? How do you think it will all end?

The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies will be in theaters December 17, 2014.

Updated 12/18/14: Read Chris Morgan's Hobbit reaction post, “Saying Goodbye to The Hobbit,” right here!

Nov 2 2014 9:00am

Shipping Sunday: Bad Judge’s Rebecca and Tedward

Rebecca attacks Tedward in Bad Judge**Spoilers for anyone not caught up on all aired episodes of Bad Judge.**

It happened one weekend. I was innocently sitting in my apartment, scrolling through Hulu in an attempt to find a show to fill my weekend. Then I found Bad Judge and thought “What the heck, why not, I like Kate Walsh!”...180 minutes later I had watched all four episodes of the season so far and I was in love. No, not with the psychologist that Rebecca is seen having sex in her office with, even in trailers (played by the awesome Ryan Hansen who some will recognize as Veronica Mars's Dick Casablancas). No, I was hooked on the potential of Rebecca and her bailiff, Tedward. Sure, it would be totally inappropriate, but that's kind of how Judge Rebecca Wright rolls.

Okay, before you all go haring off and call me crazy—and yes, I know this show has been circling the drain for weeks and it'll be a miracle if it gets a full season, let alone a second season, but let's Live. In. The Moment. Shall we?—let me make my case (this is a legal show, kind of, afterall).

[Let's hear your evidence...]

Oct 31 2014 1:00pm

Trope of the Month: Villains to Heroes

Lothaire by Kresley ColeAcademically put, tropes are “common or overused theme[s] or device[s],“ which makes them sound like cliches, which makes them seem like a bad thing.

But they’re totally not! Romance novel fans all have their favorite—not to mention least favorite—tropes, from friends to lovers, chick in pants, secret baby, marriage of convenience, opposites attract, May-December, boss-assistant...the list goes on.

Each month, we’ll be picking a romance novel trope and ask you to offer recommendations falling under the trope rubric (again with the academic talk!).

It's good to be bad. And sometimes, a character is so bad...they're a villain! But everyone loves to reform a bad boy (or girl!), and those same villains are just looking for someone to understand them...okay that might be too kind for some of these characters, but let's have you weigh in!

Here are some recommendations:

  • The Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas
  • Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith
  • Lothaire by Kresley Cole
  • Kiss of a Demon King by Kresley Cole
  • Never Kiss a Rake by Anne Stuart
  • Emily Thorn of Revenge
  • Klaus of The Vampire Diaries and The Originals
  • Raw by Belle Aurora
  • Queen of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner
  • Heart of Obsidian by Nalini Singh
  • Secrets of a Scandalous Bride by Sophia Nash

We know we're missing a few quintessential villains/villainesses (we blame Friday brain), so let us know who would make your list of the top villains to heroes/heroines! Do you like the villain-to-hero trope? Do you really believe that villains can become heroes or heroines, or do you find them totally irredeemable? Let us know your favorites and chime in with your thoughts!

Oct 26 2014 9:00am

Shipping Sunday: Sleepy Hollow’s Katrina Crane and Abraham Van Brunt (Headless Horseman)

**Note: This particular Shipping Sunday contains some spoilers about Season 2 of Sleepy Hollow**

About a month ago Sleepy Hollow returned for its second season, and yes, I was concerned about poor Ichie stuck in a pine box, that his son was the Horseman of War, and that Abbie was stuck in Purgatory. For a millisecond I was concerned about Katrina in the clutches of the Headless Horseman aka her former-fiancé Abraham Van Brunt...but then I saw him shirtless. And she saw him shirtless, and it was all kind of a gamechanger!

Okay, so maybe he's an agent of Satan, maybe he is a jealous of Katrina's love for Ichabod—and rightfully so, if you really think about how much of a dick you have to be to steal someone's fiancée! This season, Katrina and Abraham's relationship has been why I tune into Sleepy Hollow. Are you loving them as much as me? Did you ship Abraham/Katrina before or after he illusioned his head back...because I need some validation that it wasn't weird that I had a thing for him when he was headless! Chime in with your favorite moments, and how do you think they're ship will work out!?

[Let's chat...]

Oct 19 2014 1:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Doctor Who’s Danny Pink and Clara Oswald (Oswink)

Whatever your feelings might be on the new Doctor—personally I love Peter Capaldi—or on his companion, Clara—again, I have only compliments—the chemistry between Clara Oswald and fellow teacher, Danny Pink, is of galactic proportions! They are the highlight of every Doctor Who episode for me and I so want them to work out, unlike some other famous Doctor Who companion relationships.

What are your thoughts on Oswink? Are you watching Doctor Who?

[The cuteness continues...can you handle it?!...]

Oct 12 2014 1:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Once Upon a Time’s Emma Swan and Captain Hook

Spoilers ahead for anyone not caught up on Once Upon a Time and all the shipping gloriousness that is Emma Swan and Captain Hook...

Sometimes there's a ship that is so magnificent, so magnetic, so...hot that even those who don't watch the show are aware of it. Full disclosure: I don't watch Once Upon a Time anymore. I stopped around halfway through the second season, but I still can't stay away from one of my favorite ships—Captain Hook and Emma Swan, or fondly known in fandom as Captain Swan. I find myself searching out gifs, sighing over Colin O'Donoghue (who plays Hook), watching clips, and waiting desperately for the next time the internet explodes because Hook and Emma finally acknowledge their feelings, kiss, cuddle...you get the picture.

[Continue on for gif-y goodness of Captain Swan...]

Sep 27 2014 1:00pm

First Look: Sugar Jamison’s Gentlemen Prefer Curves (September 30, 2014)

Gentlemen Prefer Curves by Sugar JamisonSugar Jamison
Gentlemen Prefer Curves
St. Martin's Press / September 30, 2014 / $7.99 print / digital

Belinda Gordon thought she had it all—a great job, wonderful friends, a home of her own. She’s even come to love her voluptuous body. But she still can’t shake the feeling that something is missing. And then Carter Lancaster, aka Her Biggest Mistake, shows up in town, as irresistible as ever, and shakes up her entire world.

Carter never expected to find Belinda in town, looking as delicious as the day he married her five years ago—before she walked out on him after six weeks and a painful misunderstanding that included his baby daughter, Ruby. A quick divorce is the sensible option—but Carter can’t let Belinda go now, not when he can see the family they could be. Love may be a curveball, but this time he’s going to prove to Belinda that he can hit it out of the park… Gentlemen Prefer Curves is the third book in the Perfect Fit series

Each time I open a Sugar Jamison book, I love it more. That’s no different in Jamison’s latest Perfect Fit novel, Gentlemen Prefer Curves. I have been waiting for this book ever since the cover was revealed back in February, especially since there was talk of a secret husband!

[That's the kind of secret that should be revealed!]

Sep 23 2014 8:30am

The "And you? Will he forgive you?” Scene in Bec McMaster’s Forged by Desire

Forged by Desire by Bec McMaster**Note: This post contains minor spoilers for the book Forged by Desire by Bec McMaster. Read with caution! **

Bec McMaster knows how to write angst. When your world is built fundamentally on everyone dying because of a blood sickness (the craving virus), it’s hard not to get buried in angst—in the best way possible! However, in McMaster’s latest book in her London Steampunk series, Forged by Desire, the angst doesn’t come from the hero (who is faced with death by the craving virus when his levels spike), but from our heroine, Perry.

It is revealed through the course of the book that Perry is not who we have been lead to believe. In fact, she’s quite the opposite. Perry feels like she’s been backed into a corner by the events in the book (which I’ll endeavor not to divulge), however, she’s in a rare position of power when she elects to go back to her old life to save the people of the Night Watch, and her lover/commander Garret.

Up to this point, Garret and Perry have fought every battle, survived Perry going missing, accepted the knowledge that Garret’s craving virus levels have sky-rocketed and have vowed to stay together and find a way to make it work. However, once Perry is backed into a corner, she thinks the only way solve everything is to sacrifice herself to a madman.

[Sacrifices for love...]

Sep 19 2014 12:00pm

LOL! The Top 10 Rom-Coms of the Past 10 Years

I worship at the altar of Nora Ephron, Tom Hanks, and Meg Ryan. I can quote When Harry Met Sally on command, and I’ve been to Katz’s Deli. However, since the early 2000s, much has been left to desire in the world of the rom-com. But if you know where to look, there are plenty of gems to be found. In chronological order, here are my picks for the best rom-coms of the last ten years; what rom-coms would make it onto your list?

13 Going on 30 (2004)
Why? Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Garner are perfectly charming. As teenagers, we all wished we were older and wiser—or Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving as Jenna wishes in the film. But she quickly learns that the perfect life isn’t really worth it without the ones we love. Plus, Andy Serkis doing the Thriller dance is a vision.

[And so many other things to love...]

Sep 14 2014 2:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Haven’s Audrey/Nathan, Audrey/Duke, and More!

The SyFy show Haven returned this past Thursday, and while things are unresolved for some of the characters, one thing is certain—the chemistry is off the charts!

Audrey Parker has learned a lot about herself and the Troubled people of Haven over the last four seasons. She seems to soothe their Troubles and people are drawn to her. None more so than Nathan Wuornos and Duke Crocker. Never before in a show have I had so much trouble deciding on a 'ship, and normally I stay far away from a love triangle, but maybe the same thing that pulls Nathan and Duke to Audrey has me under a spell too! To this day, I still can't decide if I love the “awww”-warm-and-fuzzy moments Audrey has with Nathan (that simple kiss on the cheek still undoes me), or the sizzling tension she has with Duke (but she soothes his soul, I tell myself!), and yes, sometimes my little shipping heart wonders what it would be like if all that tension between Nathan and Duke were used in a different way.

Who do you ship on the show—and it doesn't have to be limited to a twosome (wink, wink)?

[All the ships, plus a poll, are docking in Haven...]

Aug 26 2014 12:30pm

First Look: Jeaniene Frost’s The Beautiful Ashes (August 26, 2014)

The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene FrostJeaniene Frost
The Beautiful Ashes (Broken Destiny #1)
Harlequin / August 26, 2014 / $14.95 print, $7.99 digital

In a world of shadows, anything is possible. Except escaping your fate.

Ever since she was a child, Ivy has been gripped by visions of strange realms just beyond her own. But when her sister goes missing, Ivy discovers the truth is far worse—her hallucinations are real, and her sister is trapped in a parallel realm. And the one person who believes her is the dangerously attractive guy who's bound by an ancient legacy to betray her.

Adrian might have turned his back on those who raised him, but that doesn't mean he can change his fateno matter how strong a pull he feels toward Ivy. Together they search for the powerful relic that can save her sister, but Adrian knows what Ivy doesn't: that every step brings Ivy closer to the truth about her own destiny, and a war that could doom the world. Sooner or later, it will be Ivy on one side and Adrian on the other. And nothing but ashes in between.

Jeaniene Frost dives into a brand new world with the first book in her Broken Destiny trilogy, The Beautiful Ashes. With little preamble, we are thrown into Ivy’s world, where suddenly instead of the happy, cohesive family she’s always known, she now has a missing sister and dead parents—and can see into a parallel world made up of dark, disfigured facsimiles of our world and people.

[Into the darkness...]