<i>The Purest Hook</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Purest Hook: Exclusive Excerpt Scarlett Cole "Pixie and Dred have to decide what really matters..." <i>In Sickness and In Elf</i>: Exclusive Excerpt In Sickness and In Elf: Exclusive Excerpt AE Jones "Placing her down gently, he pushed a silky strand of hair..." <i>Tangled</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Tangled: Exclusive Excerpt Kate Douglas "The need was so primal, so visceral, it left her shaken..." <i>The Girl from Summer Hill</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Girl from Summer Hill: Exclusive Excerpt Jude Deveraux "He stood there staring at her, saying nothing..."
From The Blog
May 1, 2016
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Sahara Hoshi and Pen Singleton
April 29, 2016
Captain America vs. Iron Man: Which Side Are You On?
Pen Singleton and Sahara Hoshi
April 28, 2016
At Home: Julian Fellowes’ Belgravia, Episode 4
Naz Keynejad
April 28, 2016
Why Prince Songs Make a Perfect Soundtrack for Romance Novels
Abigail Strom
April 28, 2016
Best Reads of April 2016
Team H & H
Showing posts by: Jennifer Proffitt click to see Jennifer Proffitt's profile
Mon
May 2 2016 8:45am

Frenemies in Romance—The Characters We Love to Hate?

I stumbled upon a recent post in which people wrote to the frenemies who had passively aggressively “supported them” through years of friendship. The notes were refreshing, empowering, and embodied everything you would like to say to our frenemies. The concept, especially to our younger selves, is one that is so familiar that we find it quite often in fiction. If the heroine has a friend, she's either hyper supportive... or the gateway to a breakthrough for the heroine when she realize this friend was actually an enemy all along. 

What do you think about the concept of the “frenemy” both in fiction and in real life? When we portray female friendship in romance, do you like seeing all sides of female friendship—from the faithful best friend to the “enemy that you keep around because you live in a small town and you can't not be friends with her”? Or do you think the presence of the frenemy in female friendship perpetuates the myth that it's “ok” to be mean?

Let us know in the comments!  

Fri
Apr 29 2016 4:00pm

Cowboy & Baron Deals + Prince Harry is Very Amusing: 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

Part Time Cowboy by Maisey Yates

Deal Alert: Maisey Yates' contemporary Part Time Cowboy is marked down to $2.99 in e-book at Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Amazon, etc.* You can find a Yates hero named in Rhyll Biest's “10 Romance Heroes You'll Want Between Your Covers.”

Deal Alert: Erin Knightley's historical The Baron Next Door is discounted to $2.99 in e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, etc.* Knightley's debut, More Than a Stranger, made it into guest author Valerie Bowman's roundup of historical debuts to watch in 2012.

Fresh Outta the Oven

We didn't elect President Barack Obama for his acting skills, nor do we love the British royal family for theirs, however, I'm currently flailing in my office chair at the cute levels that are being overloaded right now. In the cutest video ever, Prince Harry explains the Invictus Game brochure to his grandmother. Yes, any other day, she's Queen Elizabeth, but in this video she can't be called anything else but Grandma. The video is interrupted by an iMessage from FLOTUS—“Oh look, a message from Michelle, how very amusing”—telling the Royals to “Bring It” for the Invictus Games. I wasn't planning on tuning in before, but I'm very tempted now! See the full video and hear the Queen of England say “Oh, really. Please,” and tell us you're not flailing at the cute too!

[+C.J. Cregg briefs the press (you read that right)...]

Fri
Apr 29 2016 8:23am

Does a Character’s “Voice” Ever Pull You Out of a Story?

Source: giphy.com

Many times it's the voice, more than anything else, that pulls us in and has us coming back time and again. However, sometimes a voice just doesn't do it for us. Or it does, but for whatever reason it pulls us out of the story. Have you ever had a character's voice pull you out of a story? Maybe the female character's voice is pitch perfect, but the hero's isn't? Or vice versa. 

Let us know in the comments!

Thu
Apr 28 2016 8:23am

Reading FOMO— Do You Have It?

Ariel in The Little Mermaid, Part of Your World

FOMO (the Fear of Missing Out) can feel pretty debilitating. When it comes to new releases, there are SO many books and so little time. The discerning reader has to make choices as it's pretty impossible to read 200 or more titles in a month—we have more than that in May Shopping List this month. Do you ever get FOMO over all the great books you're NOT reading? What do you think you're “missing out” on?

Let us know in the comments!

Wed
Apr 27 2016 8:17am

We’re Hosting an H&H AMA—Ask Us Anything!

Source: www.youtube.com

We've joined the world of Facebook Live! Not sure what that is? That's OK! It's essentially like Live TV, but all hosted on our Facebook page. Every day around 4 p.m. ET we go LIVE (yes, like really live, like super live, like I-say-“all-the-wood”-and-it-gets-taken-sexually live) over on our Facebook page and give you commentary on all the news of the day from our Afternoon Tea roundup. If you haven't been able to tune in... that's OK, too, the videos get saved on Facebook for future viewing pleasure, in case you miss us at 4 p.m.

This week we're trying a little something different: Later today you can send in your questions (or in the comments below now) and I'll answer anything you have from my favorite color and my first romance to what I'm reading, what I really think about certain topics and beyond! 

So, if you have any questions for anyone on Team H&H let us know down in the comments or over on our Facebook, and we'll try to get them answered in our Facebook Live session at 4 p.m. ET today! 

And if you couldn't tune in, here it is! We had so many great questions and I hope I gave great answers in return. Thanks for joining us:

Tue
Apr 26 2016 8:07am

What’s Your Favorite Trope Combination?

In classic literature, tropes often get a bad reputation. But in Romancelandia, they reign supreme! According to Romance Writers of America, the top 10 tropes in the genre are:

  • friends to lovers
  •  soul mate/fate 
  • second chance at love 
  • secret romance
  • first love
  • strong hero/heroine
  • reunited lovers
  • love triangle
  • sexy billionaire/millionaire
  • sassy heroine

But what if some of these tropes were combined (an argument could be made that some of these should be already, since they're very similar)—would that be the key to your perfect book? What are your favorite trope combinations? 

Let us know in the comments!

 

Mon
Apr 25 2016 8:07am

Do You Ever Fall in Love with Secondary Characters More?

It doesn't happen often but it can happen, you're swimming along reading a great book... and suddenly you realize you're more in love with the secondary characters than you are with the main leads! Have you ever had this happen to you? Do you continue to read anywa,y or do you put down the book and see if the author has written about those other characters yet? What's a good reader to do!? 

Let us know in the comments!

Fri
Apr 22 2016 4:00pm

Head into the Wicked Abyss with Kresley Cole: 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.}

BREAKING NEWS:

—We hate to see them leave, but love to watch them go! See the cover for the FINAL book in Christina Lauren's Beautiful series, Beautiful

Top Off Your TBR Pile

The Return of Rafe MacKade by Nora Roberts

Deal Alert #1: Nora RobertsThe Return of Rafe MacKade is only $1.99 at online retailers like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, and more.* For those of you not familiar with the MacKade Brothers, get ready to be swept away—especially when you see Rafe's romantic gesture in Janga's roundup of the best grand gestures in romance. 

–Deal Alert #2: Laura Kinsale's Lessons in French is one you won't want to miss while it's on sale for $1.99 at e-tailers like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBookstore, and more.* Kinsale's classic, Flowers from the Storm, landed on Laurie Gold's list of the best romances of the '90s, Danielle Monsch's ode to Kinsale's brilliance, and Janga's nod to the classics of historical romance. 

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

Fresh outta the Oven!

Earlier this week, Kresley Cole was over at Under the Covers book blog talking about her recent release of The Player, only to reveal the (tentative) title for her upcoming Immortals After Dark book, Wicked Abyss. As a Kresley Cole superfan, I'm personally pumped for this one! What do you hope she explores in this book? Who do you think the hero/heroine will be? I'm thinking we're finally going to see Furie's story (who else has been in an abyss?!).

Where Stacia Kane leads we will follow, especially if she's starting a new series! Get a sneak peek of Made for Sin, the first book in her new urban fantasy series featuring a vegas P.I. with a need to sin (for serious, it's no joke, and I'm so excited). Back in 2013, H&H was proud to publish a Downside Ghosts short story, “Close to You,” and can't wait to meet this new P.I.!

Today on H&H


Have a tip about hot romance news? Drop Heather & Jenn a line at heroesnhearts@gmail.com!


 

Fri
Apr 22 2016 8:01am

What Do You Think When You Hear Something is a “Romeo and Juliet” Story?

1968 version of Romeo and Juliet

Recently we got into a discussion of what people could think when someone says “It's a Romeo and Juliet story.” For the most part, the consensus was that it held a stronger connotation to star crossed lovers than *spoiler alert* “everyone dies in the end.” 

What pops to mind first when you hear “Romeo and Juliet Story” and do you think it's an acceptable, subtle way to imply that a story won't end happily?

Let us know in the comments!

Thu
Apr 21 2016 4:30pm

Craving More: The Maybe Someday Crave Experience

Today we're thrilled to offer a sneak peek behind the scenes of The Crave App. We were invited “backstage” as the Crave Crew shot footage for the newly released (on the app) Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover. For those not familiar with the app, it's a subscription service which offers up bite size chunks of books that have been “enhanced” to include video footage, gifs, pictures, and even instant message conversations. 

“How do I take a place with no dialogue  and not overwhelm them with Facebook and text messages,” Hoover said of writing and incorporating the many ways people have of talking to each other in this day and age—ways that she incorporated into Maybe Someday. 

When taking a book to “the screen,” Crave founder Ziv Navoth said it's important to think about the reader experience: “Does it add anything if we're going to stop you from reading?”

What the Crave app does offer is a chance to see your favorite book boyfriends come to life, and if you're like us, you get to watch them walk around set in a wet Speedo—yes, I know, my job is so hard! In fact, at one point, the director can be heard yelling “Can I get those Speedos?” With Speedos on the mind, it's easy to slip in and out of the world that Colleen Hoover created, fans enjoyed, and now, Crave has interpreted in a brand new way. 

[Let's interpret together...]

Thu
Apr 21 2016 12:30pm

Exclusive Series Cover Reveal: Mira Lyn Kelly’s The Best Men Series + Behind the Scenes

May the Best Man Win by Mira Lyn Kelly

Today we've got an extra sneak peek that we're very excited to share with you. We're not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but Mira Lyn Kelly's new Best Men series already has us chatting about the fun concept behind her covers. Not only were all four covers, with all four couples, shot on the same day, but, the discerning Chicago fan may notice, if you line up all the covers together you'll get the wonderful vista of the Chicago skyline. 

“The concept behind these covers was the fact that we were working with a series that has weddings as its main theme and over-arching setting for the series, but the stories weren’t about the brides,” said Sourcebooks art director, Dawn Adams. “We haven’t seen that yet, and it is very different so I felt the covers needed to be different. I got thinking about weddings, and the bridal party and how that in itself is a crazy filled bunch (I know mine was!) So I got thinking about images of bridal parties. Photographers these days come up with some pretty cool bridal party shots, they are fun, they are silly and they always look crazy fun. That is what this series is.”

 

[A match made in heaven... but a logistical nightmare?!]

Thu
Apr 21 2016 8:12am

Describe Your Favorite Book in 5 Words or Less!

A Hunger Like No Other by Kresley ColeWe're almost through the week, so we thought it'd be fun to play a little game. We all have our favorite books, but sometimes it's hard to articulate what's going on with them and why we love them so much. So, today, we challenge you to describe your favorite book in five words or less. 

Do your best—feel free to keep coming back to try again—and share down in the comments!

 

Wed
Apr 20 2016 8:16am

Are You More Willing to Forgive a Hero Than a Heroine?

Many times books, TV shows, and movies get the conflict going with the Big Unforgivable Thing. Just off the top of our heads we've seen cheating (not usually on the other half of the couple, but that's been known to happen), mass murder, addiction, and more. And yet, in the hands of a skilled writer, we're able to forgive these actions, or at least root for the character in question—and in a pattern that makes our feminist heart scream, it's typically “more” successful a transition from “unforgivable” to “forgiven”  when it's the hero doing the unforgivable thing. No matter who gets forgiven, it seems the hero has the easier road to redemption. 

Do you find this to be the case for you? Why do you think we find it easier to forgive the hero over the heroine?

Let us know in the comments!

Tue
Apr 19 2016 8:22am

What Type of Romance Hero Would You Want to... Clean Your House!?

Last week, one of our bloggers sent me a link about the “Men in Kilts” cleaning service. I've heard of similarly fetishized services being offered through women—a “real” French maid can come clean your floors, etc. etc.—and I've heard of the “College Hunks Hauling Junk” moving company. However, this one is new. With Jamie Fraser fever hitting woman for a second season, I can totally see the appeal of a man in a kilt coming to clean out your gutters (heh, anything to get the ladder out, amiright!?). Perviness aside, the concept is cute, if one I will never use. 

However, if you could have any “type” of hero come to your house and be at your beck and call, what “type” would you choose?


If you need help, you can take our quiz to discover your ideal romance hero, and come back and let us know in the comments!


Mon
Apr 18 2016 4:36pm

Castle Shocker & Cynthia Eden Deal: 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.}

Deal Alerts

Bite the Dust by Cynthia EdenCynthia Eden's paranormal Bite the Dust (Blood and Moonlight #1), in which homicide detective Jane Hart finds herself in the middle of a war between vampires and werewolves, is currently on sale for $.99 in e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, etc.* Eden writes top-notch anti-heroes, says Nichole Severn.

Jill Shalvis's contemporary Get a Clue—in which jilted-bride Breanne takes her honeymoon anyway and ends up meeting burned-out vice cop Cooper—is discounted to $1.99 in e-book at iBooks, Barnes & Noble, Amazon, etc.* Want more Jill Shalvis? You've come to the right place.

Dorothea Benton Frank's South Carolina Lowcountry-set women's fiction novel The Hurricane Sisters—featuring “three generations of women buried in secrets”—is bargain-priced at $1.99 in e-book for the moment at Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Amazon, etc.* Wondering what's good in women's fiction lately? Scarlettleigh has the new releases roundup you need.

Tasty Morsels

H&H's Jenn Proffitt joins the ladies of the “XOXO After Darkcast” to talk all things shipping, first romance novels, and more! Check out the episode on XOXO After Dark or on iTunes.

[+Castle news & more...]

Mon
Apr 18 2016 8:11am

What Was Your Last Comfort Read?

Source: Buzzfeed

While Team H&H was at the RT Book Lover's Convention, we picked up a lot of old favorites. You can't go wrong with a classic! So we'll be doing a lot of comfort reading over the next few weeks, we're sure. When and what was your last comfort read?

Let us know in the comments!

 

Fri
Apr 15 2016 8:15am

What Celebrity Would You Give an Imprint?

Nora Roberts

Last week it was announced that Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner would be taking their phenom, The Lenny Letter, to Random House to form an imprint. They seem like a great voice to be curating content for an imprint, and it begged the question of othe celebrities that would make great curators! Michelle Obama, Emma Watson, Shonda Rhimes, and more made the rounds in an article on BookRiot. 

Now, it's out turn—what celebrity or romance author do you think would be great at the helm of a romance imprint? Who's your dream team? What sorts of books do you think they would publish?

Let us know in the comments!

ETA: An imprint is a trade name under which a work is published in a publishing house. A single publishing company may have multiple imprints, with the different imprints often used by the publisher to market and publish certain types of books—for example Avon is an imprint of Harper Collins and specializes in romance.

 

 

Thu
Apr 14 2016 8:45am

Harley Quinn/The Joker: OTP, or Get the Hell Away from Me?

Harley Quinn has long been one of my favorite characters in the DC comics universe. However, her sychophantic devotion to Batman's archnemesis The Joker has always made her simultaneously more interesting, and more sympathetic. 

Are you one of the people who likes seeing The Joker and Harley Quinn together, or do you yell “get away from me” at the mere thought? 

Let us know in the comments!

Wed
Apr 13 2016 8:45am

Who Would You Fantasy Cast in The Grand Sophy?

The Grand Sophy by Georgette HeyerMany movie rumors and scandals broke because of the Sony hack a few years ago, but one of the rumors that just came to light was the potential for a movie adaptaion of Georgette Heyer's The Grand Sophy. 

 

At H&H, you could say we love fantasy castings, so with this news in mind, who would you fantasy cast in The Grand Sophy? Have you ever read the book?

Let us know in the comments!

Tue
Apr 12 2016 8:13am

A Writer Who Needs No Introduction...

We're a little obsessed with romance, and no author can call out that obsession to fellow readers quite like Nora Roberts. Today we see the release of Nora's latest book, The Obsession, which gets her even closer to having more than 300 titles under her belt. As such a titan in the genre, it's no wonder she's in need of no last name for readers to know exactly who she is. 

What other authors can you just say their first name and you know exactly who is being talked about?

Let us know in the comments!