<i>Cuffed</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Cuffed: Exclusive Excerpt K. Bromberg "What's one night of sex going to hurt . . . right?" <i>The White Lily</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The White Lily: Exclusive Excerpt Juliette Cross "There's more to the duke than she thought." <i>Nailed It</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Nailed It: Exclusive Excerpt Cindi Madsen "It's much easier to fix up a house than a broken heart..." <i>The Right Kind of Rogue</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Right Kind of Rogue: Exclusive Excerpt Valerie Bowman "A surprise encounter on a deep, dark night could be enough to spark..."
From The Blog
October 21, 2017
Tracy Wolff’s Royal Pain: From Rake to Royal
October 21, 2017
ICYMI: Win 10 Books, New Nora Roberts Book, Book Club Discussion, and more!
Team H & H
October 20, 2017
In Defense of the Flawed Heroine
Darlene Marshall
October 20, 2017
Gena Showalter Reveals the Next Two Couples in Lords of the Underworld Series
Team H & H
October 19, 2017
Set Sail with Danelle Harmon’s Heir to the Sea
Wendy the Super Librarian
Oct 23 2017 9:30am

9 Indie Romance Best Bets for October 2017

It’s hard to believe it is already October, but the abundance of pumpkin flavored everything tells me it really is. There are so many exceptional indie romances this month that I am exhausted from all of the reading I did, but it is the kind that's heartwarming, contented exhaustion that you feel after a good book. I hope you are able enjoy these October reads with any of your favorite pumpkin flavored beverage or treat. 

#1 Player by T. Gephart

#1 Player by T. Gephart

(Amazon | B&N | Kobo)

Lila Callan had an unconventional upbringing—unavoidable when your mother owns a brothel. But while she’d inherited some of her parents’ ‘wacky and offbeat’, she was also strong, independent and incredibly intelligent. The fact she was tall, beautiful and blond was a bonus she never really cared to exploit. She wasn’t uptight; it’s just that long term was more her thing, with zero interest in one-night stands. 

Until she met Ryan York and then she isn’t so sure. 

Blindingly good looking.
Insane body.
Infectious sense of humor.
And charm for days. 
Ryan York was movie star material. 
Except that he wasn’t. 

He’d turned his back on the idea of hitting the big time, more content with being Eric Larsson’s—his best friend who was a movie star—right-hand man. Despite his laid-back persona, he was a guy who could get stuff done. And women lined up to be done by Ryan. He did not have a problem with that. Not. At. All. 

Except his magical panty dropping powers didn’t seem to extend to the lovely Lila. And she wasn’t sure if she was going to teach the #1 player a new game, or find one herself. 

One way or another, they were both getting naked. 

Why you should read this: #1 Player is one of my favorite romantic comedies of 2017, and I read a lot of romantic comedies! T. Gephart seamlessly blends lighthearted fun with smoking hot love scenes and heartfelt romance, and her razor-sharp wit is infused in every laugh-out-loud moment, of which there are many. You’ll fall in love with charismatic Ryan and sassy Lila; they’re intensely likable characters who have fantastic chemistry and a dynamic repartee. #1 Player has it all and should not be missed.

[Read more...]

Oct 23 2017 8:35am

Do You Consider Any Classics from Literature to be Romances?

Pride and Prejudice by Jane AustenJane Austen is studied in many literature classes but her work also contains some longstanding examples of an outstanding romantic novel. Her books follow many of romance's rules and at the very least have influenced many a romance novel. Can you think of any classics of literature—books that came out before the romance genre was defined as it is today—that would fit within the rules of the genre? Why do you think they fit? 

Tell me your thoughts down in the comments!

Oct 22 2017 10:00pm

One Life For Another: Poldark, Season 3, Episode 4 Romelza Heart-to-Heart

Poldark, Season 3, Episode 4

Show/EpisodePoldark, Season 3, Episode 4* (US)
Ship(s): Ross/Demelza (Romelza)

*Editors Note: This is Episode 4 as broadcast by Masterpiece PBS in the U.S. This episode originally aired on BBC One as Episode 5.

This week's episode of Poldark was both bleak and joyful. There were reunions, escapes, near deaths, and deaths all wrapped up in this incredibly emotional episode.

When we left off last week, we saw that Dr. Enys's conditions are dire. The French prison he's being held in is a terrible place and he's only surviving due to his skill as a doctor, but you can see in his countenance that he doesn't anticipate surviving the prison for much longer.

Back in Cornwall, everyone is doing their best with what they have. Morwenna and Drake are growing closer, George is still on the warpath against Ross, Elizabeth is dealing with a baby that has rickets, and Demelza is, of course, the bedrock of the Poldark family while Ross dreams up ways to help Dwight.  

[Read more...]

Oct 22 2017 12:05pm

K. Bromberg Excerpt: Cuffed

K. Bromberg

Cuffed by K. Bromberg

“I hate you. I never want to see you again.”

Grant Malone is not the reason I moved back to Sunnyville—at least that's what I tell myself. Yet, those parting words I said to him back in third grade, ring in my ears every time a townsperson brings up one of the Malone boys. I thought time had healed my wounds. I was wrong. Nothing could have prepared me for how I felt when I finally saw him again.

Twenty years does a lot to turn a boy into a man. One who hits all my buttons—sexy, funny, attractive, and a police officer. But Grant is off limits because he knows too much about my past.

But I'm drawn to him. That damn uniform of his doesn't hurt either. It'll be my downfall. I know it.

What's one night of sex going to hurt . . . right?

Get a sneak peek at K. Bromberg's Cuffed (available October 23, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

“Are you’re seriously going to arrest me?”

“Give me a good reason why you’re in such a hurry you need to go ninety miles an hour.”

[Read the full Cuffed excerpt...]

Oct 21 2017 12:30pm

Juliette Cross Excerpt: The White Lily

Juliette Cross

The White Lily by Juliette Cross

To the north of the Varis empire, a mysterious faction spreads propaganda against the vampire monarchy. Friedrich Volya, the Duke of Winter Hill, seeks to discover who they are before his uncle finds them first. King Dominik will punish the traitors with brutal force.

Local schoolteacher, the raven-haired Brennalyn, is on her own mission—to spy on the duke and discover what she can for the Black Lily. She longs to help the commonwealth and bring justice to the many orphans left behind from the ravages of the blood madness, like the children she lovingly keeps in her care. What she doesn't plan for is the heart-pounding attraction she feels for the duke, enemy to the Black Lily.

But when Brennalyn's secret puts her life and the life of her children in danger, Friedrich steps in as her protector, she finds out there's more to the duke than she thought.

Get a sneak peek at Juliette Cross's The White Lily (available October 23, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

“I hope you don’t plan to murder me in the woods.” Her tone was flippant, but her heart was not.

He scoffed. “No. I have other plans for you.”

[Read the full The White Lily excerpt...]

Oct 21 2017 11:00am

Kian in Tracy Wolff’s Royal Pain Goes from Playboy Rake to True Royal

Royal Pain by Tracy Wolff

What is it about royalty? We—or at least I am always a sucker for royalty romance. Maybe it’s because I can think maybe something like that might happen to me? Hey, it happened to the princess of Denmark who famously met the crown prince at a bar in Sydney, Australia. She was a commoner, too. Though of course, don’t worry. Even if I were to be picked up in a bar, I’d remain true. But I digress…

Royal Pain by Tracy Wolff features the “spare” of the Wildemar throne who is a twin. Kian falls in love with Savannah Breslin just when his twin is kidnapped. Yup. And what’s more, Savvy has a history with the heir. It makes for an interesting reunion after they finally extract Garrett (the heir) from kidnappers. Just what their history is, you’ll have to read to find out.

The story is sound, and as we leave summer, this is a fantastic beach read. I wanted to know about Savannah and how the two twins reconcile their relationship. And I can’t wait for Garratt’s story. But now it’s Kian’s. And I love his transformation from playboy rake to responsible twin. He’s layered and real. And provides just enough reality to make him believable. We are able to sympathize with him by the end. He is made to be a real person.

[Read more...]

Oct 20 2017 4:30pm

Tell Me About It...Stud: Romance News & Deals from Nichole Chase, Sarina Bowen, and More

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 to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Bedmates by Nichole Chase

Deal Alert: Nichole Chase's contemporary romance Bedmates is $1.99 at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | etc.* For Maddie McGuire, being the First Daughter is hard enough, so when her latest error lands her in police custody, it gives the press all the ammunition they need. In order to make amends, Maddie must perform community service alongside the annoyingly hot son of the VP, Jake Simmon. When the two of them meet, they prove there's a thin line between love and hate... Don't miss out on more enemies-to-lovers romances! 

Deal Alert: Rachel Grant's romantic suspense novel Covert Evidence is $.99 at Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Amazon | etc.* Reviewer Dolly Sickles calls Grant her “new measuring stick for romantic suspense,“ adding: ”Her heroes and heroines are incredibly well-matched in intelligence, honor, quirkiness, vulnerabilities, and character.” Travel along and fall in love as archaeologist Cressida embarks on a trip to Turkey, where she crosses paths with CIA officer Ian, who is on a mission to intercept a microchip before it falls into enemy hands.

Deal Alert: Sarina Bowen's contemporary romance Keepsake is $.99 at iBooks | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | etc.* Lark and Zack are both survivors trying to do their best to piece their lives back together. Shipley Farm ends up being a sanctuary for them both as they learn to trust their new circumstances and one another. Try out a scene from the third book in Bowen's True North series.

Deal Alert: Jamie K. Schmidt's contemporary romance Stud is $.99 at Kobo | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | etc.* Terri can't stand when Mick walks into her coffee shop every morning—no matter how intensely good-looking he may be. When Mick unexpectedly asks her out, she knows she should say no...so why does she find herself saying yes? Pour a drink and get into this double-shot of love! 

[+Caitriona Balfe & Sam Heughan read Outlander fic and more...]

Oct 20 2017 2:00pm

“That wedding didn’t happen”: Comments That Made Our Week

We at Heroes and Heartbreakers are so proud of and thankful for this wonderful community. Thank you for always adding a little extra sparkle to our week. In honor of Fan Friday, we want to give a special shoutout to a few of our favorite comments, and the readers behind them. We love your work!

Kareni gave us a darling story

Kareni in Have You Ever Thought Something In Real Life Would Make a Good Romance Novel?

In the fifties, New Zealand had such a small population that they were paying ship passage for young people to come out and settle there. First my aunt went and settled there. My mother left the Netherlands and traveled on the same ship that my father was working on as a purser. She was in a crowded cabin and was very seasick. A different young man who she met onboard invited her to stay in his less crowded cabin. Her cabinmates reported her missing and a shipwide search commenced. My father found her ... in the other man's cabin. This was all quite innocent, but she was rebuked.

My mother and aunt saved money to bring their mother to NZ. My grandmother met my father on what was his own last purser voyage before he too settled in NZ. Sometime later, my mother and grandmother encountered my father on the street and invited him to my mother's wedding. She'd become engaged to that other young man in whose cabin she had stayed.

That wedding didn't happen .... (I guess you'll have to read that unwritten book to find out more.)

[+4 more comments of the week]

Oct 20 2017 1:00pm

In Defense of the Flawed Heroine

Ain't She Sweet by Susan Elizabeth Phillips

You Keep the Sweet, I’ll Take the Salty

Romancelandia seems to do fine with the bad boy in need of redemption, the rakes and rogues who are only waiting for the love of a good woman to mend their ways (Kids—don’t try this at home. In real life it seldom ends well.) But what about the bad girls, the ones who lie, cheat, steal, and stomp on the hero’s heart on their way out the door, laughing like a higher-pitched version of Snidely Whiplash? Where’s the love for them?

Give me the flawed girl, the one who’s been kicked around but comes up fighting, who uses her strengths to overcome the unlikeable characteristics that all too often are tied to her being female—her overt sexuality or manipulative ways, her gossiping or acting “unladylike”.

Some of the standout unlikeable heroines include Sugar Beth Carey in Susan Elizabeth Phillips’ Ain’t She Sweet? (Amazon | B&N | Kobo) As the book notes say, Sugar Beth has “broken hearts, ruined friendships, and destroyed reputations.” She is a major league Southern belle gone bad, bless her heart. Her flaws weren’t pretend, they were very real and Sugar Beth had to work hard to redeem herself while not losing the essence of who she was, what made her strong.

[Read more...]

Oct 20 2017 12:00pm

Compromised: Arrow 6x02 Olicity Heart-to-Heart

Arrow, Season 6, Episode 2, Tribute

Show/EpisodeArrow Season 6, Episode 2, “Tribute”
Ship(s): Olicity

Arrow 6x02 Captain's Log

In the aftermath of last week’s bombshell reveal, where we see that someone leaked a hoodless, massless photo of Oliver Queen as the Green Arrow to Channel 52 news, we open with Oliver walking into city hall amidst a swarm of hungry journalists. Obviously, they all want to know what he has to say in the wake of that enormous bombshell. Oliver doesn’t even skip a beat. He charms the crowd, grinning and telling them that the photo was doctored. Heck, it could have been Bruce Wayne’s head on that body… if he was in town. Which he’s not. He emphasizes that if he was a mayor during the day and a crime-fighting hero at night, that would truly make him a superhero. But he’s just the mayor. There’s a twinkle in his eye and it occurs to me that when this inevitably gets blown open (you all know it will), there will already be a precedent for Oliver being a superhero. He may as well have just said: “I deserve a statue and a national holiday, thankyouverymuch.” I actually kind of wonder if that’s not the point. Hmm. 

So while they try to track who leaked the photo, Oliver has other business. The Markovian delegation and the SCPD precinct needs to be rebuilt. Oh yeah, that’s right. That one villain blew it up. God, she was the worst. 

[Read more...]

Oct 20 2017 10:30am

Gena Showalter Reveals the Next Two Couples in Lords of the Underworld Series

The Darkest Promise by Gena Showalter

In an announcement on her Facebook page, Gena Showalter revealed who the next two couples in her Lords of the Underworld series would be. Many readers have long been rooting for William and Gillian to get a happy ending, and with the 2018 releases of her books The Darkest Warrior and The Darkest Captive, Showalter had some decisions to make: 

Before I sat down to write THE DARKEST WARRIOR—because yes, I have now written the first and second draft—I narrowed down my choices to only (1) William and Gillian, (2) William and someone new, (3) Gillian and Puck, (4) Viola (5) Galen and Legion, (6) Hades, or (7) Rathbone. No problem, right? (Snort!)

In the end, Showalter had the books all plotted out for many of these characters, but who would finally be next? Here's what she had to say: 

THE DARKEST WARRIOR features Puck and Gillian. (William has a huge role in this book, the most he's ever been in a book in fact, and I answer all of your questions about his relationship with Gillian.)

THE DARKEST CAPTIVE features Galen and Legion, and it will release from 1001 Dark Nights in December. I haven't written this one yet, but I do have it plotted and SHIVER!!!!! (Preorder goes live in December)

Showalter gave the full explanation for this decision in her announcement post but it still left many fans divided, as some have long shipped Gillian/William (Gilliam) and are disappointed, while others see a lot of potential for Gillian and Puck and/or say they saw this news coming. What are your thoughts? Are you excited for these characters to get together? Tell us about it in the comments!

Catch up on the latest Lords of the Underworld book. Learn more about or order a copy of The Darkest Promise by Gena Showalter, available now:

Buy at Amazon

Buy at B&N

Buy at iTunes


Buy at IndieBound

Buy at Kobo




Oct 20 2017 9:30am

First Look: Sarina Bowen’s Bountiful (October 20, 2017)

Bountiful by Sarina Bowen

Sarina Bowen
Bountiful (True North #4)
Sarina Bowen / October 20, 2017 / $3.99 digital

A mystery subplot running throughout the True North series has been, “Phew, Griff isn't the father of Zara's baby... so who is?” It turns out that fourth book in the “True North” series is also an unofficial entry in the Sarina Bowen's Brooklyn Bruisers series—there's no actual hockey, but Leo and Castro are around to crack wise and help support their buddy Dave, who'd planned to re-hook up with the gorgeous Vermont bartender he once had a fling with but is instead faced with 15-month-old Nicole.

Dave Beringer hasn't figured largely in previous Bruisers books, although we'd been told that he had an injury that kept him off the rink for a long time. Here we discover he's also another kind of  player, not above using whatever gets him what he wants:

“When the right moment came, I'd turn on the charm. I was willing to play the professional athlete card, too. Although something told me that swagger wouldn't be the right play for Zara. She might be too forthright to care that I got paid millions to fly around the rink a hundred nights a year.”

[Read more...]

Oct 20 2017 8:24am

What’s the Furthest You’ve Gotten in a Book Before You DNF’ed It?

Girl Reading a BookSome readers make commitments to themselves to read an entire book, no matter how much it may annoy them. Still others will give up on a book within the first few chapters if they don't like it. If you're the type that can DNF a book, what's the furthest you've gotten before you finally gave up? Did you get to the final chapters and decided you just didn't care any more? Did you get halfway? Were you annoyed by the book or just indifferent before you stopped? 


Tell us about it in the comments!

Oct 19 2017 4:30pm

They’re Sexy and They’re Wicked: Romance News & Deals from Sara Humphreys, Deborah Simmons, and More

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 to have your daily cuppa delivered straight to your inbox.}

Top Off Your TBR Pile

Tall, Dark, and Vampire by Sara Humphreys

Deal Alert: Sara Humphreys's paranormal romance Tall, Dark, and Vampire is $.99 at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | etc.* The first book in Humphreys's Dead in the City series introduces us to a paranormal world within the confines of New York City. Detective Doug Paxton is on the hunt for a killer. When his investigation leads him to the doorstep of Olivia Hollingsworth's club, he knows something is off, but he can't deny the pull he feels towards her. 

Deal Alert: Deborah Simmons's historical romance The Devil's Lady is $.99 at Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Amazon | etc.* Don't miss this Medieval play on the Beauty and the Beast trope. Aisley de Laci is commanded by the king to marry one of his knights, but instead chooses the Baron Montmorency, a recluse rumored to possess mystical powers. When she starts to develop feelings for the man whose face she's never seen, she starts to believe there's something to the rumors about his powers. Don't miss out on more Unusual Historicals!

Deal Alert: Linda Wisdom's paranormal romance Demons Are a Girl's Best Friend is $.99 at iBooksAmazon | Barnes & Noble | etc.* Maggie is a witch who works as a paranormal law enforcement officer and gets a new assignment that taxes her considerable patience. In order to survive, she's going to have to call on Declan, the half-demon man who makes her hotter than hot. Treat yourself to even more laugh-out-loud paranormal romances!

[+A Dance With Me playlist, The Punisher trailer, and more...]

Oct 19 2017 2:00pm

Set Sail with Danelle Harmon’s Heir to the Sea

Heir to the Sea by Danelle Harmon

Oh, what a glorious time we romance readers live in! When self-publishing is viable and authors have options on how they wish to deliver their stories to readers. This seventh book in Danelle Harmon’s Heroes of the Sea series is a perfect example. It is one part throwback and one part rule breaker, making it less than ideal to land in New York, but more than comfortable in the wild, wild west of self-publishing.

Captain Kieran Merrick is the youngest son of a past series romance couple, Brendan, and Mira from Captain of My Heart, and is grappling with the untimely death of his parents. That would be Rule Breaker #1. Kieran was the good son. The child that never gave his parents any grief. Not like his sister Maeve or his brother Connor. Speaking of Connor, Kieran has baggage with him that he’s not anxious to confront, namely the fact that he blames Connor’s impulsiveness for the death of his parents.  That would be Rule Breaker #2.

[Read more...]

Oct 19 2017 1:00pm

First Look: Christine Warren’s Hard Breaker (October 31, 2017)

 Hard Breaker by Christine Warren

Christine Warren
Hard Breaker (Gargoyles #6)
St. Martin's Press / October 31, 2017 / $7.99 print & digital

Christine Warren takes opposites attract to new levels in Hard Breaker, the 6th in her Gargoyles series. American Ivy Beckett has the gift of Clairaudience: “She can hear voices, feel events, and receive messages from great distances.” Sounds great, right? A “radio receiver inside her head” that allows her to tune into whatever, whenever. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.

Ivy never got to choose what she could hear. It only came to her at the moments she least wanted to hear, moments filled with anger or fear or soul-wrenching grief. It had to be powered by emotion, and somehow the most powerful emotions always seemed to be the most painful ones.

Clairaudial empathy, someone had suggested as a label. Ivy just called it her curse.

One night, in the “choking grip of sleep,” Ivy’s “subconscious recognized the fear in her cousin’s voice, the urgency in her uncle’s.” She listens, powerless, as they are murdered by the “servants of the Darkness.” Heartbroken, angry, confused, and at the mercy of her garbled gift of Clairaudience, Ivy moves across the pond to Croydon, South London: “Situational awareness had become a hard-earned skill of hers since she’d gotten involved in her little side business here in London.” Her side business is running an underground railroad of sorts—shepherding Wardens from England to safety in Paris. Slow down—Wardens? Are we in Harry Potter territory, magic all around us Muggles but we can’t see it? That’s not far from the truth.

[Read more...]

Oct 19 2017 12:00pm

Cindi Madsen Excerpt: Nailed It

Cindi Madsen

Nailed It by Cindi Madsen

I'm Ivy Clarke. Bartender, best friend, and disbeliever in love.And now I'm in over my head, trying to flip a house all by myself. Thanks, HGTV.

I'm not too proud to admit I need some help. Too bad the only one who can help me is the same man I want to throw out this house's second-story window.

Jackson Gamble and I can't be in the same room together for more than a minute without devolving into a sparring match.

Except for that one time...

But enough about that. Jackson's looking for forever, and I don't believe in love, remember?

Get in. Renovate. Get out. Keep my heart firmly in tact. Because it's much easier to fix up a house than a broken heart.

Get a sneak peek at Cindi Madsen's Nailed It (available October 23, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Jackson sighed and rubbed a hand along his jaw as he took another glance at the mess that was the kitchen. Then he turned back to me. “There’s no reason for you to use up every penny you have, and you definitely have enough stubbornness to spare, but maybe hold it back for one little minute while I suggest something…”

I opened my mouth, and he arched an eyebrow, like he was challenging me to make it that one little minute. “Fine. You’ve got one minute.”

[Read the full Nailed It excerpt...]

Oct 19 2017 9:30am

A How-to Guide for Reviewing Romance for the Inexperienced (and Indifferent) Critic

Source: Shutterstock

6 Aspects of Romance You Should Definitely Bring Up When You Review the Genre

Being a critic isn’t an easy job. Especially when it comes to reviewing romance.

It’s such a complex genre with all those predictable endings that are so feel-good. I mean, what’s to critique in that? And all that intricate conflict, carefully crafted plot development, and detailed characterization can be very overwhelming to the inexperienced critic.

I’m here to help you.

What’s that? Oh, you’re actually very experienced and well-read individual? I see, just not with romance. Forgive me for assuming you’re a beginner given the inaccuracies that slip in an occasional (or every) sentence of your review.

I suppose it is forgivable since romance is out of the norm of what a book critic, like yourself, usually reads. When serious things like death, violence, introspection, and assault are your standard, knowing what to do with something so touchy-feely as romance is very challenging.

Here’s a best practices guide to give you a little assistance on reviewing the new-to-you genre you just started reading last week and you’re now a self-proclaimed avid fan of.

[Read more...]

Oct 19 2017 8:24am

Have You Ever Thought Something In Real Life Would Make a Good Romance Novel?

Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction. Still other times, real life is even sweeter. We've all had meet-cutes in life that would make great set ups for romance novels. Have you ever witnessed, experienced, or heard a story about something and thought “that would make a good romance novel”? Or after the fact, think, “if this were a romance novel it would end like this...”? 

Tell me about it in the comments!