<i>The Amish Bride of Ice Mountain</i>: Excerpt The Amish Bride of Ice Mountain: Excerpt Kelly Long "Ach, he’s so formal, maybe he’ll not attempt a kiss at all…" <i>Flaming Hot</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Flaming Hot: Exclusive Excerpt Lynn LaFleur "He tilted his head the other direction and kissed her again..." <i>Slow Hand</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Slow Hand: Exclusive Excerpt Victoria Vane "Nikki closed her eyes and parted her lips on a sigh of surrender..." <i>Maybe This Christmas</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Maybe This Christmas: Exclusive Excerpt Sarah Morgan "She tried to walk past him but lost her balance and fell against his chest..."
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October 24, 2014
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Cathy Maxwell
Showing posts by: Megan Frampton click to see Megan Frampton's profile
Tue
Sep 30 2014 8:14am

Outlander Thoughts and Predictions?

Now that you've digested the first half of Outlander's season, what do you think of the series? Are you on-board for the second half of the season? What were your favorite parts? What were your least favorite parts?

What do you want to see when Outlander resumes in April?

Discuss!

Gif from Outlander-Starz

Mon
Sep 29 2014 8:29am

Is Edwardian the New Regency?

We've been featuring Not-Your-Usual-Historicals for awhile now, but it seems as though more readers are finding new and different time periods to read in. One of the biggest gains in historical romance is Edwardian-set romance, with recent examples by authors such as Maggie Robinson, Mia Gabriel, and Connie Brockway.

There could be a few explanations for this surge; first and most obvious would be the ripple effect of Downton Abbey's popularity. Second could be because that period is now more than one hundred years from us, and seems more 'historical.' 

While we're not saying the Regency is out-of-fashion, we think Edwardian might be coming more into vogue. If you're a historical reader, have you noticed more Edwardian-set romances?

Fri
Sep 26 2014 8:30am

How Do You Feel About First Person Point-of-View?

Toby Stephens and Ruth Wilson in Jane Eyre

In the past, some romance readers said they were turned off by a book if it was told in the first person (“Reader, I married him”). But as New Adult and gothics are coming more into the mainstream of romance, it seems as though first person isn't still the hurdle it used to be.

How do you feel about first person point-of-view?

Thu
Sep 25 2014 8:16am

Throwback Thursday: Who Was Your First Auto-Buy Author?

Frozen by Meljean BrookAn auto-buy author is one whose books you purchase (or pre-order) as soon as you find out about them, without considering whether or not you'll like it—she's one of your favorite authors, so of course you'll like it!

Which author was the first author on your auto-buy list?

Wed
Sep 24 2014 8:03am

The Freedom to Read: Celebrating Banned Books Week

Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. JamesWe're midway through Banned Books Week, “an annual event celebrating the freedom to read...Banned Books Week brings together the entire book community—librarians, booksellers, publishers, journalists, teachers, and readers of all types—in shared support of the freedom to seek and to express ideas, even those some consider unorthodox or unpopular.”

The 10 most challenged titles of 2013 were:

Captain Underpants (series), by Dav Pilkey
Reasons: Offensive language, unsuited for age group, violence

The Bluest Eye, by Toni Morrison
Reasons: Offensive language, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group, violence

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, by Sherman Alexie
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, offensive language, racism, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

Fifty Shades of Grey, by E.L. James
Reasons: Nudity, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins
Reasons: Religious viewpoint, unsuited to age group

A Bad Boy Can Be Good for A Girl, by Tanya Lee Stone
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, nudity, offensive language, sexually explicit

Looking for Alaska, by John Green
Reasons: Drugs/alcohol/smoking, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky
Reasons: drugs/alcohol/smoking, homosexuality, sexually explicit, unsuited to age group

Bless Me Ultima, by Rudolfo Anaya
Reasons: Occult/Satanism, offensive language, religious viewpoint, sexually explicit

Bone (series), by Jeff Smith
Reasons: Political viewpoint, racism, violence

How are you celebrating this week? 
 

Tue
Sep 23 2014 8:04am

What’s Your Favorite Wedding Gif?

So on Saturday night, Starz's Outlander series showed us what Outlander fans have been picturing in their minds for over twenty years—Jamie and Claire's wedding night. In the book, it lasted for over fifty pages, so it stands to reason it would be spooled out as slowly on television. But when it heated up—whoa!

So in the interests of satisfying our most gratuitously prurient desires, here are some of the wedding gif(t)s WE got from Jamie and Claire's wedding.

 

[NSFW below]

Mon
Sep 22 2014 8:10am

Is it Ever All Right for the Hero to Have Sex with Someone Other than the Heroine in the Book?

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau

There is a book coming out in the next month or so (a gritty motorcycle club book) that has a scene where the heroine comes into the hero's living room and finds him having sex with another woman (this is after seeing him getting orally serviced, but in that scene, he stops before finishing). Not only does he not stop the sex, he takes the heroine's suggestion, and he and the other woman head off to his bedroom to finish. And the heroine hears it all.

This isn't precisely a cheating hero, since the hero and heroine haven't committed to one another yet, but it skates very close to the line. Have you read any romance novels where this happens?

Is it ever all right for the hero to have sex with someone other than the heroine during the course of the book? 

Sun
Sep 21 2014 2:00pm

Shipping Sunday: Sleepy Hollow’s Ichabbie

Sleepy Hollow's Ichabbie, the pairing of 18th century Ichabod Crane and modern woman Abbie Mills, is a 'ship that makes a lot of sense—and it also does not. Let's explain.

Source: SupaGirl  

First, let's take the fun stuff—the 'shipping. 

[Cast off the line, sailors!]

Fri
Sep 19 2014 8:23am

Who’s Your Favorite Pirate?

Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow

Today is Talk Like a Pirate Day! And in honor of the day, we want to know if your favorite pirate is Captain Kidd, Captain Morgan, Dread Pirate Roberts, Blackbeard, Captain Jack Sparrow, or someone else? 

Are you talking like a pirate today? 

Thu
Sep 18 2014 8:15am

Throwback Thursday: What Was Your First Erotic Romance?

Awaken, My Love by Robin SchoneIt might not have been the smuttiest thing you ever read—but it was your first. The first time you read all the details of what happened behind the bedroom door. The first time you glanced around to make sure no-one was reading over your shoulder, since what you were reading was some seriously dirty stuff. The first time you thought, “Wow, somebody wrote all this!”

What was your first erotic romance?

Wed
Sep 17 2014 4:30pm

Hearts Flutter as Benedict Cumberbatch Recreates Wet Darcy Scene for Charity!

Benedict Cumberbatch as Darcy from Jane Austen's Pride and PrejudiceHe's doing this for good, people! Benedict Cumberbatch recently recreated the stepping out of the water scene from the 1995 version of Pride and Prejudice starring Colin Firth.

The charity, Give Up Clothes For Good, encourages people to donate their used clothing that will go to help children with cancer. And just because, here's the original scene:

Wed
Sep 17 2014 9:57am

Diamond Dan Dances on The Mindy Project Season 3 Premiere

Gifs by jackdonaghy.tumblr.com  (see the whole glorious gif set here)

This post contains SPOILERS for all aired episodes of The Mindy Project, including last night’s Season 3 premiere, “We're a Couple Now, Haters!“ If you haven't watched yet, look away!

Last night's The Mindy Project revealed many things, but perhaps foremost is that Danny Castellano (played by Chris Messina) paid for medical school by stripping under the name “Diamond Dan.” Yes, you read that right.

We were also reminded that Mindy and Danny have so much in common:

Danny: I would never let my woman plan a charity event with some guy. I would never do it.

Mindy: And I would never want to plan a charity event.

But perhaps the most ”aww!"-inspiring moment was when Danny told Mindy “It's real.” And then busted a move for her after. We say again: Aww!

Wed
Sep 17 2014 8:16am

What Are the Biggest Issues Facing Couples in Couplehood?

The Mindy Project returned last night, and the first episode, titled “We're a Couple Now, Haters!,” makes it clear that the show won't be pulling all that will they/won't they stuff, at least not initially. While the H&H staff is very excited to see Mindy and Danny as an actual couple, sometimes once a relationship is settled, it's less interesting.

Except when it isn't. We're guessing Mindy and Danny are going to still disagree (as in the clip above), even as they work through their being in a relationship. Watching that should be delightful, and we're excited to see how these two navigate being together.

So we want to know—what are the biggest issues facing a successful couple in fiction, and whose are the most fun to watch? 

Tue
Sep 16 2014 8:37am

Quick-to-Calm Wives = Happier Marriages?

Angela Bassett in Waiting to Exhale

Confirming a wife's role as caretaker in a marriage, a study discussed in HealthDay says that a marriage's success depends on the wife's ability to calm down after an argument—whereas it doesn't seem to matter at if the husband is able to calm down (how unfair is that?)

“Emotions such as anger and contempt can seem very threatening for couples,[one of the study's authors says]...But our study suggests that if spouses — especially wives — are able to calm themselves, their marriages can continue to thrive.”

The study spoke to approximately eighty heterosexual couples recovering from recent conflict. 

Are you the calmer one in your marriage? 

Mon
Sep 15 2014 8:28am

Does Everyone Always ’Ship?

The Heroes and Heartbreakers staff had an interesting conversation pertaining to the return of Shipping Sunday. One of us said that most people don't 'ship relationships, that they accept what the scriptwriters write for the characters, and that we, as romance fans, are unusual in wanting this or that couple to get together.

That astonished others among us. Surely, everyone 'ships, whether or not they are a romance fan. 

So what do you think—do all people 'ship characters (whether they acknowledge it as 'shipping or not), or are we unusual for wanting characters in books, movies, and television series to get together?

Gif from SmartLadiesLoveStuff

survey tool
Fri
Sep 12 2014 8:04am

What’s the Longest You’ve Gone Without Reading a Book?

Viggo Mortensen in Lord of the Rings

Home, work, relationships, family, school, a favorite television series or a big movie (or series of movies*); sometimes you get derailed from constantly reading (that's okay!)

Worse is when you just can't get into anything, so you decide to take a break from reading for a bit to get your excitement back.

No matter what the distraction, we're wondering—what's the longest time you've gone without reading a book? 

*We don't blame you; Aragorn is easy on the eyes.

Thu
Sep 11 2014 8:19am

Throwback Thursday: Do You Recall Your First TSTL Heroine?

“How could she DO that?” Maybe you've asked that of a heroine from one (or more) of the romance novels you've read. She's put herself deliberately in danger, she hasn't spoken up when she should have, she's misunderstood something that was obvious to everyone else; if you've ever encountered one of these heroines, you have met a heroine who's Too Stupid to Live (TSTL, in shorthand romance terms).

Today for Throwback Thursday we'll ask—when's the first time you encountered a TSTL Heroine? 

Wed
Sep 10 2014 8:20am

When Good Guys Go Bad

We've covered many instances of when bad guys turn good (the villain in one story who becomes the hero of the next), but what about the other way around?

Jax Teller of Sons of Anarchy started out his journey wanting to do the right thing, but events conspired against him, and now he's not. Charlie Hunnam, who plays Jax says in an interview with TV Guide, “Jax was always so tortured by the pull of who he thought he should be. There's something really liberating about being rid of the sense of having to be a good guy. This season is about Jax deciding... if he's got no reason to leave [the outlaw world], he may as well be what this world demands you be.”

Are there examples in romance where the good guy goes bad? 

Tue
Sep 9 2014 8:03am

Who’s the Most Important Baby in Romance?

News of the royal pregnancy broke yesterday, and naturally we thought about babies in romance novels. Often they are mentioned as part of the Happily Ever After epilogue, and sometimes they are a more crucial part of the plot, whether they are the Secret Baby or the hero or heroine has to suddenly take care of a baby, requiring assistance that leads to romance.

 

 

So we want to ask you—who's the most important baby in romance? 

Mon
Sep 8 2014 8:16am

Have You Ever Talked to a Stranger About a Book?

Smooth Talking Stranger by Lisa KleypasReaders know there's nothing like talking about a book you love with someone who loves it as well. And perhaps you've seen someone reading a book you loved yourself, but you didn't know the person (even though you knew the book!)

Have you ever gone up and talked to someone about a book they were reading? More than once? What books?