<i>Eleventh Grave in Moonlight</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Eleventh Grave in Moonlight: Exclusive Excerpt Darynda Jones "I wanted to study her reaction since I couldn’t feel her emotions." <i>The Turn</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Turn: Exclusive Excerpt Kim Harrison "Love can hold the world together as a new balance is found." <i>The Room Mate</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Room Mate: Exclusive Excerpt Kendall Ryan "My fingertips tingled with the desire to reach out and touch him." <i>The List</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The List: Exclusive Excerpt Tawna Fenske "Will Simon’s big secret make that the one fantasy that can never come true?"
From The Blog
January 23, 2017
Do You Love Scruffy Men?
Olivia Dade
January 20, 2017
Friday Beefcake: A Love Letter to Men with Dogs & Babies
Jen Wattley
January 19, 2017
Meet-Text? Romances That Began as Text Relationships
Jessica Moro
January 19, 2017
Karen Marie Moning’s Feversong SPOILER THREAD!! (MAJOR SPOILERS)
Jessica Avery
January 18, 2017
Top 5 Highlanders in Romance
Anna Bowling
Showing posts by: Lucy Dosch click to see Lucy Dosch's profile
Jan 9 2017 9:30am

First Look: Skye Jordan’s Wild Kisses (January 10, 2017)

Wild Kisses by Skye Jordan

Skye Jordan
Wild Kisses (Wildwood #2)
Montlake / January 10, 2017 / $12.95 print, $4.99 digital

A “second chance” romance usually refers to the main characters having an opportunity to reconnect and have a second chance at love, but I also think of this trope when the characters need a second chance at life. In Skye Jordan’s latest, Wild Kisses, the main characters are trying to outrun the mistakes of their youth that put their lives in a tailspin.  They have paid the consequences for their mistakes, and they are both trying to restart their lives. But they find not everyone believes that someone deserves a second chance.

Trace Hutton is trying to rebuild his life after several years in prison on a drug possession charge. He has paid dearly for that bad decision. He returned to Wildwood to take care of his aging father and to rebuild the construction business that he was forced to leave behind. There aren’t many who are willing to support him. Most of the people in town have known him all his life, but being a good kid and kind to your neighbors, doesn’t mean anything after you have spent a few years behind bars. Those small-town neighbors now only see an ex-con and instead of giving him a helping hand and a second chance, they are waiting around to see if he falls again.

[Read more...]

Dec 8 2016 9:30am

First Look: Thea Harrison’s Moonshadow (December 13, 2016)

Moonshadow by Thea Harrison

Thea Harrison
Moonshadow (Moonshadow #1)
Thea Harrison / December 13, 2016 / $16.00 print, $4.99 digital

In her first spinoff novel, Thea Harrison takes us halfway around the world from our beloved Elder Races, but have no fear, she definitely brings her special magic to a whole new cast of characters. 

In Moonshadow, while recovering from gunshot wounds received on a recent case, witch consultant to the Los Angeles Police Department, Sophie Ross is given an opportunity to travel to the U.K. Sophie has been offered a chance to inherit an estate and an entailment to take care of it.  The only hitch is she has to be able to get into a house that no one has been able to enter for a century. The house was built on the site of a collapsed crossover passage to the land of the Dark Court, because of this, different parts of the manor have drifted into altered shifts between our plane and the Otherlands.

[Read more...]

Nov 1 2016 10:00am

Pronunciation Dictionary for J.R. Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood

Dark Lover by J.R. Ward

Have you ever picked up an urban fantasy novel with its own world building and stared helplessly at the words in front of you before you futilely try to sound out the names of the characters or the concepts introduced?

I am a big fan of audiobooks and have listened to almost the entire Black Dagger Brotherhood series being read to me by Jim Frangione. My friend exclusively reads the BDB series.   Each time a new book is released, we have a sit down conference about the happenings of the story.  Yet from time to time we end up staring at each other like we are speaking two separate languages.  While I have listened to Jim’s pronunciation of some of J.R. Ward’s more interesting names and phrases, as a reader, she has looked at and interpreted these words on her own. 

It was time that all BDB lovers were on the same page so that all future Black Dagger Brotherhood conversations could be had in the same language.

Before we get started, we are going to presume that no one is having problems with the names and concepts such as Beth, Jane, Mary, Butch, John Matthew, Scribe Virgin, the Omega, and vampire.  So let’s get started…

[Read more...]

Oct 31 2016 3:00pm

New King of Our Heart in The Walking Dead: Will Ezekiel and Carol Upset Carol/Daryl Shippers?

Show/Episode: The Walking Dead Season 7, Episode 2, “The Well”
Ship (s): Carol x Ezekiel (Cezekiel), Carol x Daryl 

The Walking Dead, Captain's Log

Is it too soon to rent a hall, pick the flowers (just don’t look at them around Carol) and make sure Father Gabriel is available to do the ceremony?  Instead of a flower girl, we can have Arthur acting as apple bearer and pass fruit to all the guests. Because after last night’s The Walking Dead, I am thinking that if a man just happens to be taking his pet tiger for a walk in your new zombie-free neighborhood and just happens to stop by so he can talk you into trying his pomegranates, there might just be romance in the air.

I have been a long time Carol/Daryl shipper. Their pasts gave them common ground and losing Sophia bound them together. There is no question that they always gravitate towards each other.  When Rick banished Carol from the prison, Daryl was her staunch defender and when Carol rescued the group from Terminus and Daryl saw her for the first time in months, he ran—ran—into her arms with eyes filled with tears because he missed her so much.  But after finding a safe haven in Alexandria and they still weren’t playing house even my romantic heart started giving up hope that it would ever happen. 

[Read more...]

Oct 30 2016 10:00am

First Look: Marie Harte’s A Sure Thing (November 1, 2016)

A Sure Thing by Marie Harte

Marie Harte
A Sure Thing (The Donnigans, #1)
Sourcebooks / November 1, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

In her new series, The Donnigans, Marie Harte proves that the best source of free entertainment is and always will be family. Family loves you and supports you and is always there for you, even when you don’t want them to be. But most important, every family has those special relatives that are always, always, the best source of entertainment for those who love them most. 

At the start of A Sure Thing, clinical psychologist Ava Rosenthal is in a dating slump which she is desperately trying to turn around. Ava has a five year plan for her life and while her career goals are right on track, and plans for finding a husband and someday have a family are starting to hit a minimum deadline for achievement.  Ava has a list of specific requirements which her future spouse must have but so far none of the men who have met her requirements also have a sexual chemistry which would be needed for maximum success in marital bliss.  

[Read more...]

Oct 17 2016 8:30am

First Look: Dianne Duvall’s Rendezvous with Yesterday (October 17, 2016)

Rendezvous with Yesterday by Dianne Duvall

Dianne Duvall
Rendezvous with Yesterday (The Gifted Ones #2)
Dianne Duvall / October 17, 2016 / $12.99 print, $4.99 digital

In Rendezvous with Yesterday, Dianne Duvall paints a brilliant picture of the differences of modern life and medieval England by blending her Gifted Ones series with her Immortal Guardians series and to do so, she only needed a splash of time travel dabbed with a little immortality.

Bethany Bennett is a modern woman who has a normal obsession with her cell phone and a not so normal one for guns. But the guns are important to her work in the family business as a bounty hunter. In a day that will change how Bethany views the world (and history), Bethany goes with her brother on what should be a long-shot tip to apprehend two wanted killers.  From the moment they step into the forest, everything goes wrong and Bethany is left fighting for her life.  She is losing a great deal of blood and as she loses consciousness, she isn’t sure if this is the end.  What she doesn’t realize is that when she wakes up she is no longer in modern day Texas, but in the forest of England in the year 1203.   

[Read more...]

Oct 5 2016 1:30pm

Return to Whisper Hollow in Yasmine Galenorn’s Shadow Silence

Shadow Silence by Yasmine Galenorn

The quaint little town of Whisper Hollow is as quiet as the grave, which in Whisper Hollow isn’t quiet at all.  What goes into the grave here, doesn’t always stay there.  That is why Kerris Fellwater is the 50th spirit shaman who has taken up the post in Whisper Hollow.  She has been tasked by the Morrigan to help the restless spirits move on to the next realm.

But in Yasmine Galenorn’s latest, Shadow Silence, Kerris has felt a dark presence stirring up trouble with the spirits that wander in the woods and graveyards.  Something has been using magic to keep the Screaming Tree from warning that something dark is seething in the woods surrounding the Town.

There are seven rules that anyone who lives in Whisper Hollow knows.

[Read more...]

Oct 2 2016 10:00am

First Look: Katie Ruggle’s In Safe Hands (October 4, 2016)

In Safe Hands by Katie Ruggle

Katie Ruggle
In Safe Hands (Search and Rescue #4)
Sourcebooks / October 4, 2016 / $7.99 print, $5.99 digital

It is funny that the most intriguing character in Katie Ruggle’s Search & Rescue series is the one who can’t leave her house, but one sleepless night will end up putting Daisy in the cross-hairs of a killer in In Safe Hands.

Daisy Little hasn’t left her house since she witnessed her mother murder in a robbery when she was sixteen years old.  She now lives in a home more secure than the White House.  Her windows are barred and her double door entry has an intercom and both electronic locks and deadbolts.  Daisy hasn’t stepped out of her house in eight years, but it is from her window seat in her bedroom that she sees everything that happens in her neighborhood. 

It is from that window seat that Daisy watched what appeared to be a man carrying a dead body out of the vacant house across the street and into an SUV.  The first person Daisy contacts is her friend, Deputy Chris Jennings.  While Chris can’t give Daisy any information about ongoing investigations, he can set Daisy up with Search & Rescue diver, Lou Sparks, who has been playing the part of Nancy Drew since she inadvertently dislodged the headless dead guy from the lake.   Daisy is now part of the official and unofficial investigation in the recent deaths and missing persons around this once sleepy Colorado town. 

[Read more...]

Sep 27 2016 8:30am

First Look: Kate Meader’s Sparking the Fire (September 27, 2016)

Sparking the Fire by Kate Meader

Kate Meader
Sparking the Fire (Hot in Chicago Series)
Pocket Books / September 27, 2016 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

Firemen are hot and they live a life of excitement and danger.  They are the subject of many TV shows, movies and books.  So how about a book about a movie about fireman?  Score!

In Kate Meader’s Sparking the Fire, actress Molly Cade’s shining star has taken a little tarnish lately.  A bitter divorce and some hacked private pictures splashed across the internet have sullied her reputation, but she has just the script to bring her back into the public’s affection. 

Firefighter Alexandra Dempsey grabbed headlines last year not only with her antics, but with her passionate and volatile relationship with former City Mayor Eli Cooper.   Molly has a fabulous script about a female firefighter from Chicago and her hot romance with a man of power, but what would really guarantee her a blockbuster would be getting Alex’s stamp of approval to personalize it and make it Alex’s story.

[Read more...]

Sep 6 2016 11:00am

First Look: Samantha Young’s The One Real Thing (September 6, 2016)

The Only Real Thing by Samantha Young

Samantha Young 
The One Real Thing (Hart's Boardwalk #1)
Berkley / September 6, 2016 / $15.00 print, $5.99 digital

As the summer winds down, Samantha Young gives us one last stroll on the beach with the first book in her new Hart’s Boardwalk series, The One Real Thing. She has created for us a place where you would go to simply find a little peace from the chaos known as life.

I stepped out onto the balcony and I didn’t even care that it was a cloudy, gray day above me.

Instead I enjoyed the wind blowing up off the water because it carried with it the smell of sea and the sound of the surf.  I closed my eyes, listening to that gentle rush, the lap of water against beach, the cry of gulls in the air, and I felt a moment of complete peace.

It is letters from the past and a desperate need for a vacation that bring Dr. Jessica Huntington to the little beach town of Hartwell, Delaware.  But from the moment she arrives, the peace and tranquility of the town, the boardwalk and the ocean makes Jessica feel a level of contentment she has never found anywhere else.  

[Read more...]

Sep 2 2016 8:30am

First Look: MaryJanice Davidson Deja Who (September 6, 2016)

Deja Who by MaryJanice Davidson

MaryJanice Davidson
Deja Who (Insighter #1)
Berkley / September 6, 2016 / $15.00 print, $11.99 digital

MaryJanice Davidson creates a new world where who you are and what you do isn’t just governed by what you did in this lifetime, but who you were and what you did in your prior lifetimes. 

Leah Nazir is one of the most talented Insighters around.  We have all lived many, many lives, and Leah has the ability to look at you and see all of your prior lives and understand why your current reincarnation is behaving in a certain way. Do you fear heights? Maybe that was because in your past life, you died falling off a cliff. Are you a germaphobe? Maybe you died of the bubonic plague. It is Leah’s job as an Insighter to help you to understand how who you were effects who you are now.

After reincarnation, some people will unconsciously try to atone for past wrongs.  On rare occasions, a murderer in a past time will becomes a police officer in this one. But there are so many others who continue on with their misdeeds from one lifetime to the next. Murderers, rapists, abusers often find they are continuing their evil deeds from lifetime to lifetime. 

[Read more...]

Sep 1 2016 8:30am

First Look: J.D. Robb’s Apprentice in Death (September 6, 2016)

Apprentice in Death by J.D. Robb

J.D. Robb
Apprentice in Death (In Death #43)
Berkley / September 6, 2016 / $28.00 print, $14.99 digital

The most important aspect of J.D. Robb’s In Death series is the relations and how they affect each person.  The relationship between husband and wife is the bedrock of the series, and in Apprentice in Death, the changes in this relationship is mirrored in the redesigning of Eve’s home office and the master bedroom.  The changing of each room which once reflected the individual to something that now blends everything they are as a couple, mirrors the changes in their ever growing connection.

But just as important as the marriage bond is the relationship created by the team. The team made up of mentor and student, trainer and trainee, or master and apprentice. 

“You take on the trainee because you want him to share what you do, you want to give him something maybe.  You want to see something of you in him.”

[Read more...]

Aug 20 2016 10:00am

First Look: Rebecca Zanetti’s Shadow Falling (August 30, 2016)

Shadow Falling by Rebecca Zanetti

Rebecca Zanetti
Shadow Falling (The Scorpius Syndrome #2)
Zebra / August 30, 2016 / $7.99 print, $4.99 digital

When the world as we’ve known it comes to an end, finding safety is the key, but is there really such a thing as “safe” or is it only an illusion, something to tell ourselves so we can go to sleep at night?

“There is no crying after the apocalypse.”

In Shadow Falling, Rebecca Zanetti takes us once again to the shattered world recovering from the aftereffects of the Scorpius bacterium.  The Vanguard territory, outside of what is left of Los Angeles, is being hceld together by Jax Mercury and Dr. Lynn Harmony.  With the rest of the Vanguard residents, they are trying to do more than survivor Scorpius, they are trying to rebuild a life out of the rubble.  Part of that rebuilding is getting Lynn to a secret government laboratory only known as the Bunker.  They only have vague references that it even exists and if it does, it appears to be located somewhere in California.   Lynn is certain that several of her former colleges from the CDC are still working there trying hard to find a way to survive total annihilation because as it stands, no woman who has become pregnant before or after being infected with Scorpius has given birth.  Where Scorpius failed to wipe out humanity, infertility might just finish the job.

“The uninfected might be humanity’s only chance to continue.”

“Everyone is gonna catch Scorpius at some point, so our better bet is to find a way to promote successful pregnancies,” Tace said.  “The bacteria lives both in survivors and on surfaces, so someday there won’t be an uninfected person alive.”

[Read more...]

Aug 2 2016 2:30pm

First Look: Katie Ruggle’s Gone Too Deep (August 2, 2016)

Gone Too Deep by Katie Ruggle

Katie Ruggle
Gone Too Deep (Search and Rescue #3)
Sourcebooks Casablanca / August 2, 2016 / $6.99 print, $4.99 digital

If you have ever dreamed of wrapping yourself around a big, strong, rugged mountain of a man, then I have the guy for you, or maybe it is fair to say that Katie Ruggle has written the man for you in her latest novel, Gone Too Deep.

Ellie Price needs to get into the still snow-covered mountains of Colorado to find her father.  He isn’t in his right mind most of the time and the idea of him possibly wandering around, lost in the woods, looking for her grandfather’s cabin has Ellie in a panic.  The best man to take her out there is a member of Field County’s Search and Rescue, George Holloway.  No one knows the mountains and forest better than him.  But George can be a bit intimidating.  He is a big mountain of a man who keeps to himself.  He doesn’t even have a phone and generally doesn’t speak with anyone unless he has to respond to an emergency.

“So,” the blond said quietly, leaning in toward Ellie, “did George actually talk to you?  Because I’ve never gotten more than a grunt out of him.”

[Read more...]

Aug 1 2016 3:30pm

First Look: Sara Humphreys’s Trouble Walks In (August 2, 2016)

Trouble Walks In by Sara Humphreys

Sara Humphreys
Trouble Walks In (McGuire Brothers #2)
Sourcebooks Casablanca / August 2, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

Deciding to take a second chance at love is hard enough after experiencing a tragic loss. Can you risk your vulnerable heart if that person risks their life each day for the benefit of others? 

In Sara Humphreys's latest contemporary novel, Trouble Walks In, Maddy Morgan escaped her hometown of Old Brookfield a year ago after her love, Rick, was killed fighting a fire.  Rick and Maddy had been together since high school and their lives were intertwined for the past decade.  But Rick’s true passion had always been firefighting.  Since he was little, Rick had wanted to be like his father and just like his father, he gave his life trying to save others.  Unlike his father, Rick realized the danger and risk he faced every day and Rick refused to leave a family behind. Rick and Maddy never married and Rick would never agree to father children of his own, but in the end, he still left Maddy alone, grieving the loss of the man that was such a part of her life that staying in the Town that was the focus of their lives together became impossible.  

[Putting her heart on the line...]

Jul 21 2016 8:30am

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 6 2016 8:30am

First Look: Alice Clayton’s Cream of the Crop (July 12, 2016)

Cream of the Crop by Alice Clayton

Alice Clayton 
Cream of the Crop (Hudson Valley #2)
Gallery / July 12, 2016 / $16.00 print, $7.99 digital

Holy cow!  It’s not cheesy to say that Alice Clayton takes us on another tour of the idyllic little town of Bailey Falls, New York in her latest book, Cream of the Crop, and things are still as nutty as ever.  This time she gives us a big, beautiful heroine who is all peaches and cream with buckets of poise, unless she needs to talk to one gorgeous dairy farmer named Oscar, then her self-confidence is as Gouda(s) gone and that just makes her Bleu.  Maybe she just needs to butter him up, or maybe just churn his butter.  Oh, yes! I will be milking this one for all it’s worth. *wink*

[A nice gooey Brie...]

Jun 28 2016 3:30pm

First Look: Darynda Jones’ The Curse of Tenth Grave (June 28, 2016)

The Curse of the Tenth Grave by Darynda Jones

Darynda Jones 
The Curse of Tenth Grave (Charley Davidson #10)
St. Martin's Press / June 28, 2016 / $26.99 print, $12.99 digital

Charley Davidson is back.  Back in Albuquerque and back in her right mind.  Good luck with that.  She’s also back to doing what she does best, getting into trouble–I mean, private investigating. 

Darynda Jones has returned our favorite attention-deficit grim reaper to her old stomping grounds in New Mexico, but life doesn’t always go smoothly for Charley. Charley is settling back into her old life, but she is missing her daughter, missing her father, and not missing her step-mother.  On the plus side, she has a new case to investigate but there is something peculiar about being called in by the ADA to investigate a murder charge on behalf of the defendant, especially when said ADA is not a fan of yours.

I drew a deep, cleansing breath.  “No, you’re right.  I need to just put on my granny panties and deal.  We have a case.  No more thongs for me.”

“We have a case?”  she teased.

“A real one,” I said with a nod.  “And according to Nick the Pri—Nick Parker, an innocent man could go to prison if we don’t figure out who really killed his girlfriend, Emery Adams.”

“See?  It’s good to keep busy.  Keeps your mind off all the other, total-annihilation-and/or-death-by-an-angry-celestial-being stuff.”

[More trouble ahead...]

Jun 22 2016 8:30am

Lessons from Darynda Jones’ Charley and Reyes—Til Death Never Do Us Part

The Curse of the Tenth Grave by Darynda Jones

As the release date for The Curse of Tenth Grave draws closer, we thought you would enjoy a walk down memory lane with a few Charley/Reyes scenes to put a smile on your face. Charley Davidson, Grim Reaper, and Reyes Alexander Farrow, Son of Satan, have taught us many things over the last few years. 

1. We need to remember family.

“You didn’t remember who you were when you were born?”

His grip on my wrists eased, but just barely.  “No.  But I’d done my research well.  I should have grown up happy, gone to the same schools as you, the same college.  I knew I would have no control over my own destiny once I became human, but it was a chance I was willing to take.”

“But, you’re his son,” I said, trying really hard to hate him.  “You’re the son of Satan. Literally.”

“And you are the stepdaughter of Denise Davidson.”

Wow.  That was a bit harsh.

-  First Grave on the Right

[A hell of a time...]

Jun 7 2016 11:00am

After Me Before You: What the Movie Did Well and the Book Did Better

Spoiler Warning: We will be discussing differences between the book and the movie version of Me Before You.  There will be some spoilers.  Come back to discuss after you have enjoyed either (or both, definitely both) versions of the story. Bear in mind, this is not a romance, it's a love story, but there is no HEA. 

Trigger Warning: This post also deals with issues that may be difficult or triggering for some people to discuss, such as <highlight for trigger warning> suicidal thoughts, suicide, and assisted suicide </trigger warning>. 

When Hollywood decides to turn our favorite books into movies, most of us purists know that the movie just won’t be able to do justice to the story or the characters from the novels we love. Rarely, there comes a film that gives an author a chance to re-work their original writing in a way that makes it shine just a little brighter. 

Several months ago, I viewed the trailer for the upcoming release of Me Before You and I was delighted in what seemed to be a story of a quirky, fun girl who brings a little sunshine into the life of a quadriplegic man.  My teenaged daughter also saw the trailer and we made a date to see it as soon as it was released.

Since I am very impatient and a novel purist myself, I decided to pick up a copy of Me Before You so that I could enjoy all those extra little scenes which are usually missing from the film and to simply delve into all those emotions being felt by Will and Lou as they get to know each other. After reading the book and watching the movie, I would have to declare that this is one of the few times that Hollywood is the clear winner in their interpretation of a story.

[Say that again?]