<i>Sweet Little Lies</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Sweet Little Lies: Exclusive Excerpt Jill Shalvis "The way her name rolled off his tongue had her knees wobbling." <i>Body Rocks</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Body Rocks: Exclusive Excerpt A. M. Arthur “You can sit beside me when the world comes down.” <i>No Master</i>: Exclusive Excerpt No Master: Exclusive Excerpt Christine d'Abo "With his free hand, he caressed the side of Zain’s throat." <i>Bad Bitch</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Bad Bitch: Exclusive Excerpt Christina Saunders "I pulled him toward me, guiding him to my center."
From The Blog
June 29, 2016
Swedish Import: Simone Ahrnstedt's All In
Maggie Boyd
June 27, 2016
Books to Read If You Like Friday Night Lights
KC
June 24, 2016
Friday Beefcake Love Letter to Aidan Turner
Team H & H
June 23, 2016
Boone and Sierra Get Their HEA in Lorelei James' Unbreak My Heart
Tiffany Tyer
June 21, 2016
Romance Reading Virgin: Let’s Travel Through Space Together
Teddy Pierson
Showing posts by: Nicole Leapheart click to see Nicole Leapheart's profile
Wed
Jun 8 2016 4:30pm

Violetta Rand’s Loving Lucas is Made Out of (Book) Boyfriend Material

In the fast paced amatuer motocross world, these true weekend warriors race, party, grill, and drink. If you are Karlie Augustine, that means you are doing all of these things and smiling on the outside while hiding on the inside a long term relationship with an abusive bastard. Way past tired and realizing her mortality could be at stake one weekend, it was finally enough for Karlie and she was brave enough to make a public exit with the support of her two best friends (her high school best friend and her best friend’s boyfriend.)

When the situation looked like it might be escalating to a violent one for everyone involved a tall, hot stranger named Lucas Lafontaine entered the scene and literally saved the day. The fact that Lucas was a police officer was just the icing on the cake. Lucas knew from the moment he laid eyes on Karlie that he wanted her and despite the fact that she just just got out of a terrible relationship, he also knew he would do whatever he could to keep Karlie around until she was ready to reciprocate those feelings. In Violetta Rand’s Loving Lucas, we find out what happens when a young woman hooks up with a good guy who has a bad boy edge.

[Our favorite kind...]

Fri
May 27 2016 12:00pm

Shock and Lyon Claws: Empire Season 2 Finale Cookie/Lucious Heart-to-Heart

Show/Episode: Empire Season 2 Finale, Episode 18, “Past is Prologue”
Ship(s): Cookie and Lucious

Empire Season 2 Finale Captains Log

It’s never dull in the land of the Lyon clan. Tea was spilled, bitches were called out, fights ensued, people died, one came back from the dead, and shots were fired. Yes, yes, yes! The second half of Empire was everything and more, and through it all Cookie and Lucious continued to have the best chemistry in the worst family.

When we left the Lyons Rhonda was in the hospital because she was pushed down the stairs by an unknown person; best guesses went to Anika and we found out later on in the season that that guess was correct. Rhonda lost her baby, Andre went a little off the rails, but managed to pull himself back, and this was happening all while Camilla was running Empire with Hakeem as her new toy and CEO. Despite Hakeem’s anger at Lucious, Cookie convinces ‘Keem to be loyal to the family, and he sends a sex tape of himself and Camilla to her wife. This ends in a murder-suicide when Lucious catches Camilla killing Mimi and convinces her to kill herself. Lucious and Thirsty stayed busy doing felonious things, and Cookie stayed busy doing Cirque du Soleil quality antics to try and keep her family from killing each other.

[Oh good...]

Fri
May 20 2016 1:00pm

Scandal Season 5 Finale Olake Heart-to-Heart

Show/Episode: Scandal Season 5 Finale
Ship(s): Olivia/Jake (Olake)

Scandal Olake Heart-to-Heart

At the mid-season finale, Olitz was caput, Jake went home to Command, and Abby was just starting to properly fill the shoes of a White House Chief of Staff. Six months later, the Primary presidential race is on and it is dirty. (The team at Shondaland proved that truth was indeed stranger than fiction; at the Paley Center panel she confirmed that they had to go do quick rewrites when current presidential candidates actually said some of the over the top statements that were already part of Scandal scripts!)

The second half of this season introduced us to different versions of the characters we thought we knew so well. Olivia is a harder, colder Liv as she is still suffering from PTSD and her breakup with Fitz; Abby has realized how close she is to the power of the Oval Office and decides to make grabs for power, even if it means making an enemy of Olivia; Tom is sleeping with Cyrus (!), David is sleeping with Liz AND Susan, Mellie and Marcus have crushes on each other, and Jake appears to be domesticated under Command’s tutelage. There is never a dull moment in Shonda’s Washington.

[Never Ever...]

Tue
Apr 26 2016 11:00am

Kissing Angels and Fighting Demons: Top Eva/Gideon Moments from Sylvia Day’s Crossfire Series

Crossfire series by Sylvia Day

Editor's Note: This post is meant for superfans of Sylvia Day's Crossfire series as it contains spoilers from all 5 books. If you haven't read all the books yet...what are you still doing here!?—go get a copy now! Bonus, we are currently running a super awesome Crossfire sweepstakes, enter for a chance to win some great prizes. 

Gideon Cross and Eva Tramell are destined to be one of modern romance's top power couples. Gideon is the compelling and wealthy young man who is used to getting what he wants in his personal life as well as his professional life; his past haunts him, but when Gideon lays eyes on Eva Tramell, he sees the future. Eva is not unfamiliar with the lifestyle of affluent society, but with her father’s humble roots to ground her, she is focused on being a happy, healthy, and independent woman; the beautiful Gideon Cross could crush her like a tidal wave if she isn’t careful, but she knows just how to deal with her man. These two have a relationship that spans five books, and there are many defining moments in the series. These are the cream of the crop:

[Eva and Gideon's love ...]

Tue
Apr 5 2016 12:00pm

First Look: Sylvia Day’s One With You (April 5, 2016)

One With You by Sylvia Day

Sylvia Day
One With You (Crossfire #5)
St. Martin's Griffin / April 5, 2016 / $15.99 print, $9.99 digital

FROM #1 INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING AUTHOR SYLVIA DAY The final chapter in the global blockbuster Crossfire quintet Gideon Cross. Falling in love with him was the easiest thing I’ve ever done. It happened instantly. Completely. Irrevocably. Marrying him was a dream come true. Staying married to him is the fight of my life. Love transforms. Ours is both a refuge from the storm and the most violent of tempests. Two damaged souls entwined as one.

It has been a dark and dangerous road, but finally (squee!) Sylvia Day’s long awaited finale to the Crossfire series, One with You, is here and it is everything us fans deserve; like having a crisp and full bodied wine after a delicious steak dinner we are left sated, buzzed, and with a smile on our faces. Ace and his Angel get the HEA they deserve, but of course it’s not without enduring a few final bumps in the road.

From the moment Gideon Cross spotted Eva going into the Cross building, he was struck with the thunderbolt called love and his obsession with Eva Tramell began. The end of Captivated by You left the couple in a shakily firm place; their whirlwind courtship had barely survived past abuse, past lovers, and overzealous family members but Eva and Gideon made the commitment to be together, literally, in a secret marriage ceremony. One with You opens pretty much where Captivated ends, with our happy couple enjoying their version of domestic bliss. Eva has set some boundaries in their relationship; Gideon hates them, but he loves Eva, so he is following her lead...for now.

[One with these final pages ...]

Tue
Apr 5 2016 12:00pm

Sylvia Day’s One With You SPOILER THREAD!! (MAJOR SPOILERS)

Here you have it: It's FINALLY HEREA complete play-by-play of all of the events in Sylvia Days’s One With You, out today. This post is made up ENTIRELY of SPOILERS and is intended only as a place for fans to gather and discuss the book AFTER reading it, so if you have yet to finish, steer clear of anything after the jump. Go finish the book, then come back. (There’s a non-spoiler-y First Look of One With You here to whet your appetite).

MAJOR SPOILERS BELOWC THE JUMP.

SPOILERS SO MAJOR THEY WILL RUIN THE BOOK FOR YOU IF YOU HAVEN’T READ IT.

YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED.

***LAST CHANCE: Seriously, leave this post now if you haven’t finished One With You.  This is a post to discuss the entire book. There’s a non-spoiler-y First Look of One With You here.***

[Spoilers for One With You below ...]

Thu
Mar 10 2016 3:00pm

Country Fantasies: J.R. Ward’s Bourbon Kings Fantasy Casting

FC: Bourbon Kings - Aidan Turner as Jonathan Tulane “Lane” Baldwine

Fans of J.R. Ward are very familiar with her paranormal series like The Black Dagger Brotherhood and The Fallen Angels were probably surprised this past summer when she released the contemporary, but Downton Abbey-esque, The Bourbon Kings. This delicious first read about a Kentucky family with a prosperous bourbon business that is generations old was picked up by NBC to develop a pilot for television. The Bourbon Kings has quite a cast of characters; here is my fantasy cast of actors that I think could realistically step into these roles:

Aidan Turner as Jonathan Tulane “Lane” Baldwine

Character Bio: Lane is the youngest of the three sons; including his younger sister there are four Baldwine children. Known as a playboy, Lane found love with Lizzie King, the head horticulturalist at his mother’s family estate, Easterly. After that relationship went sour for good reason, he fled to New York and has been there for two years. However, when news comes that his “Mamma”, Miss Aurora (the woman who actually raised him) has fallen ill at Easterly, he returns home to an estate filled with drama, intrigue, and maybe once again, love. Image Source

Why Aidan? Some people know Aidan Turner as either a dwarf in The Hobbit, a vampire from the BBC series Being Human, or from the BBC series Poldark. No, he isn’t Channing Tatum but he is hot as sin to look at, and has a sexy vulnerability perfect for Lane. Also, I would love to hear him pull off a southern American accent. J.R. Ward has said Channing Tatum was the inspiration for Lane, but considering the fact that Channing is part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, he won’t have time for an NBC show. Described in the book with short, dark hair and of course, insanely handsome, Aidan fits this bill just fine for me.

[Be my king ...]

Mon
Feb 29 2016 2:00pm

First Look: Jasinda Wilder Exposed (March 1, 2016)

Exposed by Jasinda Wilder

Jasinda Wilder
Exposed (Madame X #2)
Berkley / March 1, 2016 / $15.00 print, $7.99 digital

New York Times bestselling author Jasinda Wilder presents the second darkly seductive novel starring the mysterious Madame X.
 
My name is Madame X.
My life is not my own.
But it could be...
 
Everything Madame X has ever known is contained within the four walls of the penthouse owned by her lover, her keeper—the man who controls her every move and dominates her desires.
 
While Caleb owns her body, someone else has touched her soul. X’s awakening at the hands of Logan’s raw, honest masculinity has led her down a new path, one that is as exciting as it is terrifying.
 
But Caleb’s need to own X completely knows no bounds, and he isn’t about to let her go. Not without a fight that could destroy them all...

Madame X is back in Exposed, book two of Jasinda Wilder’s sultry Madame X series. All of the erotic, noir-influenced mystery that I loved in the first book is back—and then some!

[It's delicious seduction wrapped around a meaty plot ...]

Fri
Feb 19 2016 10:30am

First Look: Lori Foster’s Fighting Dirty (February 23, 2016)

Fighting Dirty by Lori Foster

Lori Foster
Fighting Dirty (Ultimate #4)
HQN Books / February 23, 2016 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

He's the hottest MMA fighter in the game, but one woman is ready to try out a few steamy moves of her own in an unforgettable new novel from New York Times bestselling author Lori Foster 

With the life he's led and the muscles he's gained, Armie Jacobson isn't afraid of anything. Except maybe Merissa Colter's effect on him. It's not just that she's his best friend's little sister. Fact is, she deserves better. Women pursue him for one night of pleasure, and that's all he wants to offer. Until rescuing Merissa from a robbery leads to the most erotic encounter of his life.  

Good girl meets bad boy. It's a story that rarely ends well. But Merissa is taking matters into her own hands. No matter how he views himself, the Armie she knows is brave, honorable and completely loyal. And as past demons and present-day danger collide, they're both about to learn what's truly worth fighting for…

Fighting Dirty by Lori Foster is a hot across the tracks romance set in the ever popular Mixed Martial Arts sport genre. Merissa aka Rissy and Armie have the worst kept secret in the gym; they have the hots for each other and they have for a long time. Will they be able to brave her brother’s potential wrath for a real love?

[Dating a friend's sibling is never easy ...]

Tue
Jan 19 2016 10:30am

First Look: Chanel Cleeton’s Between Shadows (January 19, 2016)

Between Shadows by Chanel Cleeton

Chanel Cleeton 
Between Shadows
Chanel Cleeton / January 19, 2016 / $3.99 digital

A sexy new thriller about love and revenge from the author of the Capital Confessions and International School series… 

X lives by three rules: Show no weakness. Trust no one. Don’t get caught. She lives by the rules they gave her. 

The Academy—set in London, shrouded in secrecy—it trains spies, computer experts, and assassins. Their mission? Dispensing justice and altering the course of world politics. Or so they think. In a world where secrets are weapons and some kills are impossible to forget, everything X thought she knew about her life is about to change. 

They taught her to fight. To blend into the shadows like a ghost, to operate on the fringes of society, to change her identity with ease. They taught her to kill. 

She’ll need every skill they taught her, to stay alive.

The romantic suspense genre gets a slick and sexy update in Chanel Cleeton’s international spy thriller Between Shadows. An young American woman living in London, X is part of the Academy, a secret spy school where training starts in childhood. She could live out on her own but chooses to stay in the dorms to keep an eye on her younger sister, Grace. X is the top student at the Academy and the only student who could match her was Luke, the boy she betrayed in the worst possible way when they were younger. Now guess who is back at the Academy with revenge on his mind?

[You'll never believe who ...]

Thu
Jan 7 2016 10:30am

“Just Love Each Other”: Shayla Black and Lexi Blake’s Seduction in Session

Seduction in Session by Shayla Black and Lexi Blake

The second Perfect Gentlemen novel from the New York Times bestselling authors of the Masters of Ménage series.

Privileged, wealthy, and wild: they are the Perfect Gentlemen of Creighton Academy. But the threat of a scandal has one of them employing his most deceptive—and seductive—talents…

Recruited into the CIA at a young age, Connor Sparks knows how dirty the world can be. Only when he’s with his friends can he find some peace. So when an anonymous journalist threatens one of the Perfect Gentlemen, Connor vows to take down the person behind the computer, by whatever means necessary—even if it means posing as his target’s bodyguard.

Publishing a tabloid revealing Washington’s most subversive scandals has earned Lara Armstrong the ire of the political scene—and a slew of death threats.  To keep herself from ending up a headline, Lara hires a bodyguard, a man as handsome as he is lethal.

When the bullets start to fly, Lara is surprised to find herself in Connor’s arms. But as they begin to unravel a mystery that just might bring down the White House, Lara is devastated when she discovers Connor’s true identity—and finds herself at the mercy of forces who will stop at nothing to advance their deadly agenda.

In the second book of The Perfect Gentleman series co-written by Shayla Black and Lexi Blake we meet Lara Armstrong; hipster, vegan, and daughter of Senator Armstrong who secretly writes the salacious Capitol Scandals blog. Readers of the first novel, Scandal Never Sleeps briefly met the dangerous operative Connor Sparks; tall, broad, deadly and using his skills to find out what Lara Armstrong knows about the woman who can solve his best friend’s murder. Their relationship is based on lies, but it is lust at first sight. In Seduction in Session, we have an opposites attract enemies-to-lovers story.

[She needs a bodygurad and he needs her ...]

Mon
Dec 28 2015 11:00am

H&H Bloggers Recommend: Best Reads of 2015, Part 4

Playing By the Greek’s Rules by Sarah Morgan

Each month, we ask our bloggers to share the best thing they’ve read (or things, plural, if our bloggers declare a tie ’cause they just can’t choose). It doesn’t have to be a new book, as evidenced below; just something that made the month sparkle a bit more.

It's the end of the year now, and so we've asked them for their top three books that made the year in reading so memorable. Without further ado, here's Part 4 (of four parts) of our bloggers best reads of 2015—and don't forget to check out Part 1Part 2, and Part 3:

Miss Bates:

When H&H asked me to pick the best three romances I read in 2014, I agonized. I penned lists. I culled lists. I whittled lists. I wrote long- and short-lists. This year, my top three romances danced in my head like seasonal sugarplums! I knew exactly who they were and why I loved them. Here they are, in no particular order other than the mental sugarplum one.

Sarah Morgan’s Playing By the Greek’s Rules is a brilliant riff on the opposites-attract trope. Lily Rose, former-foster-child, waif-heroine is made of loving, empathetic steel. Her sunny ways and self-soothing personal philosophy break down the walls of Jericho around pragmatic, commitment-phobe hero Nik Zervakis’s heart.

[The final best reads of 2015 ...]

Sat
Dec 26 2015 11:00am

First Look: Sidney Halston’s Fighting Dirty (January 5, 2016)

Fighting Dirty by Sidney Halston

Sidney Halston
Fighting Dirty (Worth the Fight #5)
Loveswept / January 5, 2015 / $2.99 digital

If you love the MMA romances of Vi Kreeland and Kendall Ryan, Sidney Halston’s Worth the Fight series will knock your socks off! In Fighting Dirty, a geek-chic cage fighter proves that appearances can be deceiving... and oh-so-tempting.

With his preppy clothes and horn-rimmed glasses, Enzo Silva is the last dude anyone expects to find in a mixed martial arts gym. A wealthy Brazilian banker who never had to fight for anything, Enzo’s stuck in the amateur circuit—but he burns to make the pros. Maybe that explains the heat he feels whenever he’s around Jamie Lynn Calhoun. The pint-size, magenta-haired bartender with the Texas drawl is everything he’s not... and everything he craves.

Tough as nails and independent to a fault, Jamie Lynn—JL to her friends—works hard to pay her bills and keep life simple. Enzo is doing his best to complicate that. Even though she likes to bust his balls, he’s got some kind of a nerdy-hot vibe that makes JL wonder if she might finally be able to let her guard down. It might do the boy some good to spend some time in her world, where blood, sweat, and victory are as sweet as the first taste of real love.

Fighting Dirty by Sidney Halston is a sexy across the tracks romance that was full of hot chemistry and some serious wooing!

Enzo Silva has been trying to get Jamie Lyn to go out on a date with him for a year, but she keeps turning him down. She thinks he is a rich, stuffy snob and she tells him that she isn’t interested. While he is rich, he isn’t stuffy or a snob. Ok, he is a little anal retentive and orderly, but the right woman can change that and Enzo thinks that Jamie Lyn is the one. Meanwhile Jamie Lyn is hot for Enzo but she is very aware of their income disparity; she is a self confident woman on the outside, but on the inside the memories of her trailer park upbringing are constantly in the back of her head, holding her back. Will their opposite natures attract?

[The best fighters ...]

Fri
Dec 4 2015 10:30am

Scandal Season 5 Midseason Heart-to-Heart: There Is No Us!

TV Recap: Scandal Season 5, Mid Season Finale "Baby It's Cold Outside"

TV Recap: Season 5x09 Midseason Captain's Log Olitz

Show/Episode: Scandal Season 5, Mid Season Finale “Baby It’s Cold Outside”

Ship(s): Olitz

We have come a long way, baby since the “Heavy is the Head” season premiere of Scandal. Over the course of the season so far, Olivia has found out just exactly what that phrase mean as she and Fitz have been through quite a lot; here is the quick and dirty: First, footage of Olitz playing house in the White House is mysteriously released to Sally Langston prompting Olivia to admit she and the President are having an affair; Olivia and Fitz find themselves in the crosshairs of a scorned Mellie who has initiated an impeachment inquiry with the Senate judiciary committee; the Senate judiciary committee flips the script on Mellie and sets her up on the stand to start a complete takedown of the Grant family; Olivia is next to testify and she will either have to lie on the stand or refuse to answer questions...unless Olivia and Fitz get married in a quickie ceremony so she can’t testify against him. Out of the shadows comes Olivia’s father with another solution: release him from prison and he can pull out enough dirt on all the senators to shut the inquiry down. Olivia recruits Mellie to make his release happen and Mellie does with the caveat that Olivia helps her run for President; Papa Pope comes through, but Olivia can’t tell Fitz. Of course Fitz finds out about Eli’s escape and sends Jake to “take care of him” while Olivia is taking on First Lady duties that are boring her to tears, which brings us to “Baby It’s Cold Outside”. (That was a mouthful!)

[Everything falls apart and comes together at the same time ...]

Thu
Dec 3 2015 1:30pm

Empire Season 2 Midseason Heart-to-Heart: When Lyons Attack

TV Recap: Empire Season 2x10 Cookie and LuciousTV Recap: Empire 2x10 Captain's Log Cookie and Lucious

Show/Episode: Empire Season 2, Midseason Finale “Et Tu, Brute?”

Ship(s): Cookie and Lucious

Well, the Empire clan have been very busy over the course of the season but this finale. Cookie and Hakeem have created Lyon Dynasty and are pretty successful with their new label; Jamal has taken flight as a solo artist and is eclipsing his father quickly; Andre finally got back into the inner circle with Lucious after revealing 1) he and Rhonda accidentally killed Vernon and 2) he and Rhonda are having a baby; Cookie got a new boo-thang named Laz in the form of the sexy Adam Rodriguez and lost him when she found out Laz was conning her; Hakeem grew up when he was kidnapped and beaten up by Laz’s crew; and Lucious got rid of his legal troubles and picked up a lawyer named Thirsty as crooked as he is. (Jamal also has a storyline where his boyfriend cheats on him so they break up and recently he was so dazzled by his working relationship with pop singer Sky a.k.a. Alicia Keys that they sleep together. I’m ignoring that mess.) We also find out more about Lucious as a child with a mentally ill mother, played by Kelly Rowland. That just about brings us to the mid season finale, “Et Tu, Brute?”

[THE LYONS FAMILY has taken a left turn ...]

Thu
Nov 19 2015 5:30pm

First Look: Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue’s Before the Dawn (November 30, 2015)

Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue
Before the Dawn (The Ending #4)
L2 Books / November 24, 2015 / $3.99 digital

A year ago, the Virus killed off most people in the world. 

A year ago, strange things started happening to those who survived. Some of them transformed into something dark and sinister, while others evolved, becoming something more, something beyond human.

A year ago, Dani and Zoe were lost. They traversed the country to find one another, losing some of the people dearest to them along the way. They fought for their right to simply live, uncovered long-buried secrets, and discovered irreversible truths. And after everything Dani and Zoe have been through—even with the battle wounds that they bear—they’re still not safe.

It’s time for the struggling to end, for survivors to take back their lives, their families, their safety. It’s time to really begin to live, and to do that, they must wait for the first rays of dawn.

Before the Dawn by Lindsey Fairleigh and Lindsey Pogue is the fourth and finalish story in The Ending series. I say finalish because it looks like there will be another story told, but this book definitely closes the chapter on a harrowing, exciting, romantic, and dangerous. The world created here is rich and dynamic; there are several novellas that accompany the series that are worth a read for anyone who is addicted to The Ending series (like me!).

[Get in on this sci-fi series ...]

Mon
Nov 16 2015 10:30am

So Cheeky: Fall in Love with Curran in Cecy Robson’s Once Kissed

Once Kissed by Cecy Robson

In Cecy Robson’s Once Kissed we meet a serious law student intern who is counting down the days to graduation when her past comes back in a seriously sexy way. One of the police officers assigned to protect her turns out to be the only one night stand she allowed herself when she was an undergrad. Now that they are going to be spending quite a bit of time together, we get to see if these second chance romance lovers can make it work.

Set in the same world as her Shattered Past series, I fell in love with the O’Brien clan in Robson’s Once Pure. I was so pleased to hear the O’Briens would be getting their own series and having read Once Kissed, I can’t wait to see what happens when love hits the rest of the siblings.

The first sibling in this series to find a happily ever after is Curran, the O’Brien that has always been the life of the party and a golden boy who never had a problem keeping his bed warm. He takes his job as a police officer for the Philadelphia Police Department seriously and is well known through the department for his hard work and great instincts. However, he is currently on modified duty until he is cleared for full service; an arrest gone wrong ended with his partner getting shot and paralyzed. Now Curran has a harder time trusting his instincts and he can see in the eyes of his colleagues that they do, too.

[Reunited for some fun and sexy times, but will it be more? ...]

Tue
Nov 10 2015 10:30am

What Is Dark Romance?

Madame X by Jasinda Wilder

There have been a slew of what is considered Dark Erotica novels published recently, and truthfully, I have read and loved a great deal of them. When considering a post that rounds up some of the best of the most recent releases, or at least the most delicious and twisted selections, my first consideration was this: What the heck is Dark Erotica, anyway?

Off the top of my head I thought, well, Dark Erotica is an erotic story with dark undertones...or dark overtones. Not quite sinister, but definitely not Disney bubblegum storytelling. (Well technically, Disney stories are pretty dark, but I digress.) Dark Erotica seems to have less boundaries that typical romances; however with more secrets, lies, and intrigue it is not simply a romantic suspense erotica on steroids. When you are reading a book and give an audible gasp, it could be from an especially juicy sex scene or a secret revealed, and this reaction is common when reading dark romance novels. I think we are getting somewhere here!

I have a “dark” bookshelf on Goodreads, and I thought I could get some inspiration for an explanation from there. I was actually surprised at the variety of what I considered dark books on that shelf. Erotica of all kinds was to be found; from motorcycle clubbers and blue collar lovers to dubious consent, kidnapping novels, and secret BDSM of the affluent, anyone can fall victim to love on the dark side. This explains why DA is growing in popularity, but not exactly what it is.

[Get into the dark erotica romance ...]

Thu
Oct 29 2015 2:00pm

First Look: Brenda Jackson’s Breaking Bailey’s Rules (November 3, 2015)

Breaking Bailey's Rules by Brenda Jackson

Brenda Jackson
Breaking Bailey's Rules (The Westmorelands)
Harlequin Desire / November 3, 2015 in print; November 1, 2015 in digital / $5.25 print, $3.99 digital

In New York Times bestselling author Brenda Jackson's novel, a Westmoreland learns that rules are meant to be broken! 

 

Rule number one for Bailey Westmoreland: Never fall for a man who would take her away from her tight-knit family's Colorado home. So why is she following rancher Walker Rafferty all the way to Alaska? Bailey tells herself she owes the sexy loner an apology, and once she gets there, it's only right to stay and help him when he's injured…isn't it? Before long, Bailey realizes home might be where you make it—if Walker is ready to take all she has to offer.

In Brenda Jackson's Breaking Bailey’s Rules, we meet a self-assured, family oriented go-getter who trips and falls in love with a slightly older and way too sexy rancher who lives all the way in Alaska.

The Westmoreland family is notorious in Colorado. However, the Outlaw family is notorious in Fairbanks, Alaska and beyond due to their freight business, and the Westmorelands have discovered that they are related to the Outlaws. Being an open and welcoming but close-knit family, the Westmoreland bunch reach out to the Outlaws with this news, hoping to extend their familial ties. Being a cautious and close knit family, the Outlaws send Walker Rafferty, a close family friend, to Denver to check them out. Wild teen turned responsible adult Bailey Westmoreland is tasked with being his babysitter during his visit, and the sparks fly, but so do the tempers! Brenda Jackson’s frenemies turned lovers story Breaking Bailey’s Rules is delicious, a bit exciting, and a lot sexy.

[Just how we like 'em...]

Mon
Oct 5 2015 5:30pm

First Look: Jasinda Wilder’s Madame X (October 6, 2015)

Madame X by Jasinda Wilder

Jasinda Wilder 
Madame X
Penguin / October 6, 2015 / $15.00 print, $7.99 digital

Madame X invites you to test the limits of desire in this provocative new novel from New York Times bestselling author Jasinda Wilder.
 
My name is Madame X.
I’m the best at what I do...
 
Hired to transform the uncultured, inept sons of the wealthy and powerful into decisive, confident men, Madame X wields culture and wit like a knife. But behind her sophisticated facade X is a woman adrift, trapped between a dangerous past she can’t remember and the protection of a seductive man who claims her body—and her soul.
 
Undone time and again by his exquisite dominance, X craves and fears his desire in equal measure. And while she longs for the safety of her tower penthouse, she also yearns to escape. But X has never known anything or anyone else—until he came along…

There is nothing typical about Madame X by Jasinda Wilder. The story itself is certainly different than what “old” Jasinda Wilder fans like myself have read in the fun and bubbly Big Girls Do It series, but reflects the direction her most recent offerings like her Alpha series have been heading. I find this hugely exciting as a fan of dark erotica and gritty storytelling. It could be a challenge to be unique in the dark erotica landscape, but Jasinda Wilder has done it, and done it well, in Madame X.

[A dark erotic for your pleasure ...]