A Binge Guide to Tamsen Parker's Compass Series A Binge Guide to Tamsen Parker's Compass Series Tamsen Parker "I don’t like to think about where I would’ve ended up without him." <i>The Legend</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Legend: Exclusive Excerpt Donna Grant "Can Wyatt save Callie’s life—without putting her love in the line of fire?" Get Jenna Bayley-Burke's <em>Just Married</em>! Get Jenna Bayley-Burke's Just Married! Team H & H Join the club and download your copy of Just Married! <i>Abroad</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Abroad: Exclusive Excerpt Liz Jacobs "The last thing Nick wants is to face his deepest secret."
From The Blog
June 22, 2017
10 Dirty Football Terms You Didn't Know Are Legitimate
June 22, 2017
Love on a Deadline in Liora Blake’s Second Chance Season
Janet Webb
June 21, 2017
A Bisexual Reader’s Romance Wishlist
June 20, 2017
Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveals from Russell, Lang, and Ashenden
Team H & H
June 20, 2017
Games: A Gateway to Romance
Sahara Hoshi
Jun 22 2017 4:30pm

Hit Me With Your Best Shot: Romance News & Deals from Julie Garwood, Theresa Romain 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

Hotshot by Julie Garwood

Deal Alert: Julie Garwood's romantic suspense novel Hotshot is $1.99 at Amazon | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | etc.* Peyton Lockhart has inherited a charming oceanfront resort that has to show a profit in order to stay in the family. When she realizes someone is out to sabotage her and the threats escalate into dangerous territory, she goes to childhood friend and FBI agent Finn MacBain for help. Julie Garwood has written in a couple different subgenres—how many of her titles have you read?

Deal Alert: Theresa Romain's historical romance A Gentleman's Game is $.99 at Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Amazon | etc.* Mystery takes center stage in this Regency romance. Nathaniel Chandler has learned to trade on his charm after his family's streak of bad luck. He suspects Rosalind Agate, his father's new secretary, has something to do with the latest bad luck that's befallen him, but they both have to put aside their suspicions in order to save both their lives. Try out a steamy excerpt from A Gentleman's Game

Deal Alert: Emma Hart's contemporary romance Dirty Past is $1.99 at Kobo | iBooks | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | etc.* Ella's life gets interesting after she walks out of her wedding, throws her phone in a lake, and takes a job as a PA for Dirty B, a rock band full of dreamy, too sexy men. Band member Tate Burke has always been the love 'em and leave 'em type, but when Ella's terrible ex turns back up, a protective streak he didn't know he had turns their relationship into so much more. Who tops the charts as your favorite rock stars of romance?

[+Today on H&H]

Jun 22 2017 2:00pm

10 Dirty Football Terms You Didn’t Know Are Legitimate

Source: Shutterstock

Sports romances are hot these days, and it's not just because athletes usually have a six-pack and a pinchable butt. Football players are tough and manly, not to mention they do all right financially. And several are quite nice to look at. As a lifelong football fan and romance reader, this is one of my favorite trends yet.

In addition, football is loaded with terms that carry double meaning. The kind that make me snicker like a pre-teen boy when they come out of Troy Aikman's mouth during a broadcast. Here I share 10 of those terms so they don't make you do a spit-take the first time you read them in a romance novel.

Tight end: The classic double-entendre football term. Jokes about players having tight ends are almost cliché at this point. But tight ends do typically have especially tight (rear) ends. In football, the tight end is an offensive player who functions as both a receiver (catches the ball) and a blocker (keeps the defensive players from getting to the player with the ball). They're usually bigger guys, like 6'6", 265-pound Rob Gronkowski of the New England Patriots. Gronk has even been made somewhat infamous in the romance world thanks to the self-published fanfic of sorts, A Gronking to Remember.

Score: If a football-playing romance hero plays his cards right, this is something he can do twice. First by scoring points on the football field, then by scoring with the heroine in bed. On the field, the defense tries to stop him; in romance, he likewise encounters obstacles he must overcome to score his happily ever after (interpret HEA however you'd like).

[Read more...]

Jun 22 2017 1:00pm

Love on a Deadline in Liora Blake’s Second Chance Season

Second Chance Season by Liora BlakeThinking over the very enjoyable Second Chance Season, the lyrics of John Lennon’s “Imagine” kept running through my mind: “You may say I'm a dreamer. But I'm not the only one. I hope someday you'll join us…” Chicago-born writer Cara Cavanaugh takes the biggest chance of her life when she turns down a lucrative offer from a big-city newspaper and takes a freelance assignment in the small Colorado town of Hotchkiss. Is this going to be a small-town-life-rules trope tale? Particularly since the “Grand Valley series” encompasses the towns of Paonia and Palisade,


…where the wineries, orchards, and a bunch of crafty artisan businesses are the big draw in this once quiet part of southwestern Colorado. While the Grand Valley used to be nothing more than an afterthought in the state, now—thanks to whoever dreamed up the concept of agritourism—it’s a destination.

Not so fast on that prediction.

[Read more...]

Jun 22 2017 12:00pm

Tamsen Parker’s Compass Series: “There’s No Shame Here”

Tamsen Parker

The Cartographer by Tamsen ParkerIt's always sad to see a series end, but with every ending is a new beginning... or so the saying goes. Tamsen Parker has given us six hot reads in her Compass series, but if you're new to the series, Tamsen is here today to introduce an excerpt to the first book in the series that will leave you wanting to binge the entire hexalogy! 

On June 26th, the sixth and final book in the Compass series will release. Having The Cartographer out in the world will be bittersweet since I’ve been writing books in this universe since I started publishing. When I first started writing these books, I anticipated Personal Geography and Intimate Geography being a duology telling the story of India Burke and Cris Ardmore, a.k.a. my Scarlett O’Hara submissive heroine and her beta Dom hero.

But a funny thing happened. Those books turned out to be almost as much about India’s relationship with her BFF Reyes Walter as they did her romance with Cris. And people started asking for Rey’s book. In the meantime, I had ideas for some of India’s co-workers and colleagues to get their own HEAs which I gave them in True North and Due South, and Rey stuck his nose in their business too because he cannot even help himself.

Though the stories differ in trope (including a second chance redemption romance, and a holiday office romance), kinks (D/s, bondage, impact play, exhibitionism, voyeurism, humiliation play, violet wand, rope, and more), and pairings (Books 1-5 are m/f, Book 6 is m/m), the one overarching theme is that there’s nothing wrong with wanting what you want, it’s how you go about getting it that matters.

Which I think is why Rey ended up being the glue of the series. He’s taken it upon himself to help people get what they want and feel good about getting it. The characters in the Compass series are far from perfect—where’s the fun in that anyhow?—but they offer emotionally intense and realistic BDSM (even so, please to not be using as a How-To Manual!). They all have their hang-ups—some about sex, some about kink, but most of all about feelings (OMG, feelings are hard). But no matter how self-conscious or uncomfortable the heroes and heroines feel, I hope it’s clear there’s no shame here. About the kinks they’re into, about the kind of sex they want to have, or about the complicated feelings that come along with loving another person. 

To celebrate the wrapping up of the series, the first book, Personal Geography, is free at all retailers for a limited time. Enjoy an excerpt of India and Rey’s banter from the opening of Personal Geography below, and then come along for the HEAs of India and Cris, Slade and Pressly, Evans and Lucy, and last but certainly not least, Rey and Allie. Thanks for joining me on this journey, and happy reading!

[Read more...]

Jun 22 2017 9:30am

Jenna Bayley-Burke’s Just Married: First Comes LoveFriends with Benefits, Then Comes Marriage

Just Married by Jenna Bayley-BurkeJune’s book club pick is Just Married by Jenna Bayley-Burke. This book ticks all the romance trope boxes. For any romance reader, it’s like a big hug with all of the elements of a romance story we know and love. It was a fast read for me because Jenna does a great job of bringing these characters to life. There’s intimacy and banter and a lot of unresolved issues to move the story along.

Miranda is a successful lawyer living in Seattle that enjoys a friends with benefits relationship with her BFF Callum. Callum is an uber successful businessman and he’s having issues with an inheritance from his father. A clause requires a wife and an heir and who better to help than his Miranda. One little issue. Miranda has no idea that she’s about to become his wife.

“Mira had the ability to look sexy and innocent at the same time, and no matter how often he’d seen her put on that grin it got him every time.”

[Read more...]

Jun 22 2017 8:25am

How Many Books Can You Read at Once?

Juggling Briefcase and Baby by Jessica Hart

During the summer it's hard enough to juggle work, vacation, kids home from school, and all the other things that life throws our way. It may be even harder to get in that reading time. However, some still manage to read a book or two during these summer months—and sometimes even several books at the same time. Can you alternate between multiple books at the same time? If so, how many books are you reading at once? 

Tell us how you manage to juggle so many different books down in the comments! 

Jun 21 2017 4:30pm

Be Daring: Romance News & Deals from Lori Foster, Lauren Blakely, 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

When You Dare by Lori Foster

Deal Alert: Lori Foster's romantic suspense novel When You Dare is $1.99 at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | etc.* Romantic suspense author Molly Alexander is rescued when mercenary Dare Macintosh raids a human trafficking trailer. Once they return home, Molly hires Dare to find out who is trying to kill her...but what they start to feel for each other may be the most dangerous thing of all. Do you enjoy reading author protagonists? 

Deal Alert: A.M. Arthur's male/male romance Body Rocks is $1.99 at Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Amazon | etc.* Trey's life is going exactly to plan as his band gets accepted into the biggest music competition in the country. Things are great...until the band's drummer quits. Devastated and looking to blow off some steam, Trey hooks up with the too hot Dominic, a violinist, who turns out to be a member of a rival band. Try out the first chapter of Body Rocks

Deal Alert: Lauren Blakley's contemporary romance Playing with Her Heart is FREE at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | etc.* This boss/assistant relationship gets a Broadway twist as the lines between what's pretend and what's real blur considerably. If you're in the mood for a similar director/actor relationship, we've got you covered. 

Deal Alert: Elley Arden's sports romance The Change Up is $.99 at iBooks | Kobo | Barnes & Noble | Amazon | etc.* If you were a fan of TV's Pitch, you'll enjoy the beginning of Arden's Arlington Aces series. Former minor league baseball player Sam Sutter runs into his brother's former high school girlfriend Rachel Reed, now a successful real estate mogul looking to tear down “his” trees. Their contentious relationship grows into much more even as they each battle for what they want. 

[+The new Game of Thrones trailer & a Whitney G cover]

Jun 21 2017 2:00pm

A Bisexual Reader’s Romance Wish List

 Source: Shutterstock

Happy Pride Month! Time to learn more about me than you ever wanted to know! Pride is a complicated time for me, as a woman married to a man. I’ve identified as bi since high school, a fact my male friends thought was “so hot.” (I stopped telling people about it for that reason.) When I became comfortable enough with myself in college, I came out to a gay friend who promptly decided I must be a lesbian. I met my husband when I was 18, while playing an online game. It was over a year before I found out that she was actually he. When we met in person when I was 20, we starting dating. Ten years later, we have two kids and a house and all the trappings. You could put us on some sort of propaganda poster for “traditional marriage.” Guess what? I’m still bi.

As a bi reader, I read lots of queer romance, lots of straight romance, lots of romance in general… but I don’t often see myself represented. And, while I love reading about all kinds of love, I am putting my “wish-list” out into the universe in hopes that maybe the universe will send me some books.

[Read more...]

Jun 21 2017 12:00pm

Donna Grant Excerpt: The Legend

Donna Grant's The Legend

In The Legend, Callie Reed doesn’t need a man to protect her. An expert sharpshooter and renegade hacker, this Texas-born spitfire’s got the skills and the courage to stand up to any danger—no matter how deadly. But when she becomes the target of a shadowy organization known as the Saints, Callie is forced to team up with the one man she can’t outshoot: the gorgeous, and infuriating, Lone Star legend named Wyatt Loughman…

A Delta Force Colonel with a rock-hard body and stone-cold heart, Wyatt has been teasing and tormenting Callie since they were playmates on his family’s ranch. Of course, he’s wildly attracted to the fiery, strong-willed Callie. But he’s always hidden his feelings behind a wall of Texas tough and military cool, even as he’s burning up with desire. Can Wyatt save Callie’s life—without putting her love in the line of fire?

Get a sneak peek at Donna Grant's The Legend (available June 27, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.


Northern outskirts of Austin

Two Dallas Area Men Charged with Identity Theft

Callie stood on the sidewalk in the warm sun with a grocery bag in each hand, staring at the headline of the newspaper with her heart thumping in dread. She didn’t need to read the story to know that it was about her family.

There wasn’t a person in the state of Texas who didn’t know who the Reeds were. And it sickened her.

No matter how much distance—physically, mentally, and emotionally—she put between her and her family, they still managed to affect her life.

Numb, she turned and continued on her way. She knew she needed to be alert and attempt to spot those who might be watching her, but she couldn’t generate the energy.

[Read the full The Legend excerpt...]

Jun 21 2017 11:01am

Jenna Bayley-Burke’s Just Married Book Club Discussion Thread

Just Married by Jenny Bayley-Burke

If you're a fan of friends-to-lovers, marriages of convenience, and surprise babies, or any combination of the three, then you're going to love this month's Heroes and Heartbreakers E-Book Club selection, Jenna Bayley-Burke's Just Married.

Once you've finished swooning over Miranda and Callum's romance, come join us to talk about all the tropes. (If you're not ready just yet, read our Q&A with Jenna Bayley-Burke.)

Note: The comments for this post will be made up ENTIRELY of SPOILERS and is intended 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 also a non-spoiler-y Q&A with Jenna Bayley-Burke, the author, if you're not yet ready to dive into talking about Just Married.)


***LAST CHANCE: Seriously, leave this post now if you haven’t finished Just MarriedThis is a post to discuss the entire book.***

Here's a quick synopsis of Just Married: 

Miranda and Callum have been friends-with-benefits ever since law school. It's worked for them since they live on separate coasts until an archaic clause in Cal's family trust forces him to get married and provide an heir. Who better to fill the shoes of wife than his best friend! However, after a smoking hot honeymoon, their marriage of convenience becomes incredibly inconvenient when Miranda finds herself pregnant with twins. The two must find their way towards not only making a happy family—but finding a happy ending for themselves. 

[Read more...]

Jun 21 2017 11:01am

Jenna Bayley-Burke on the Tropeyness of Just Married

Just Married by Jenna Bayley-Burke

We love our tropes on Heroes and Heartbreakers and this month's E-Book of the Month Club pick brings ALL of the tropes—friends to lovers, marriage of convenience, babies!—together with Jenna Bayley-Burke's Just Married. We were lucky enough to sit down with Jenna to discuss her More Than Friends series and all the delicious complications that come when friends with benefits suddenly find themselves in love!

Need more from Jenna? If you're ready to swoon over Mira and Callum, come join us to talk about tropes, tropes, and more tropes in our discussion thread of Just Married. (If you're not ready just yet, play our game by “planning” your wedding and we'll tell you which hero will be waiting at the altar for you)

If you're shouting “I do!” continue the fun by discussing other modern takes on marriages of convenience in romance. 

Miranda and Callum have already been friends with benefits for years when readers first meet them—what appealed to you about writing that dynamic?

Jenna Bayley-Burke: He married someone else. I’ve had a couple friends in a similar dynamic, though in those cases the guy was more invested. One ended abruptly when he met someone else who was more than just dating. Another I am convinced are married in their head, just live too far apart to make it work. So, I made it work.

[Read more...]

Jun 21 2017 11:01am

Download June’s E-Book of the Month Pick: Jenna Bayley-Burke’s Just Married!

Our book club gives “summer of love” a whole new meaning. Each month through August, Heroes and Heartbreakers will spotlight a new romance to read and then invite readers to gather together to discuss the book in various ways, including discussion threads, author interviews, fantasy casting, and more.

That's not all: Readers in the U.S. and Canada will also have a limited-time chance to download a copy of each month's e-book—for FREE!* 

Just Married by Jenna Bayley-BurkeOur Book Club selection for June is...Jenna Bayley-Burke's Just Married!

Marriage of convenience, friends with benefits, a surprise Vegas wedding, accidental pregnancy, hot sex... Just Married has it all! We can't wait to hear what you think of it.

High-powered attorneys who live on opposite coasts, Miranda and Callum have been friends with benefits since college. But when Cal learns he has to marry to secure his inheritance, he knows his bride can only be Mira. Too bad Miranda doesn't know that, and heads to Las Vegas determined to stop him from making a big mistake by marrying some random woman...

But that's only the very beginning of Miranda and Callum's romance, so download your copy of Just Married now and then come dish with us in the book club discussion thread!

P.S. If you're a sucker for friends-to-lovers stories, you'll also want to check out Bayley-Burke's More Than Friends novel Snowed In.

Join the H&H E-Book of the Month Club now! 

Here's the deal:

  • By signing up to get your free e-book, you will also receive the weekly Heroes and Heartbreakers newsletter and  an alert every month when a new e-book is available for download!
  • Book club members will need to confirm the details of their membership in order to get the next month’s free e-book.**
  • Each book will be offered for 14 days and you MUST download your copy before the offer ends.
  • This offer is only available in the U.S. and Canada due to complex international laws; we sincerely apologize for the geographic restriction.

So sign up for the H&H E-Book of the Month Club here and then be sure to join us in all our Just Married discussion thread, an in-depth Q&A with Jenna Bayley-Burke, and more! In fact, just go ahead and Bookmark the link to our Book Club collection to keep up with all of the fun we have planned...

Happy reading!

*Offer to download Jenna Bayley-Burke's Just Married ends July 5, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. ET.

**Book club program runs until September 4, 2017, at 11:59 p.m. ET. We reserve the right to end this promotion at any time.

Jun 21 2017 9:30am

First Look: Manda Collins’ Duke With Benefits (June 27, 2017)

Duke with Benefits by Manda Collins

Manda Collins
Duke with Benefits (Studies in Scandal #2)
St. Martin's Press / June 27, 2017 / $7.99 print & digital

It’s no secret I love Historical Romance and Duke with Benefits by Manda Collins fits the bill perfectly.  It’s the second in the Scandalous Studies series and I’m already hooked. We first meet with the Duke of Maitland, Dalton Beauchamp, and Lady Daphne Forsythe in the first book. And I already love our heroine, quirks and all. She is a bit on the Asperger’s scale, needing to learn social interaction. However, she is not mean spirited and a wiz at math. Despite her inability to navigate social interactions, like Maitland, we can’t help but love her. She is beautiful, of course, but her beauty goes beyond the skin and we quickly realize how eager she is to learn about her social quirks, and how aware she is of her social faux pas.

And don’t we all want a man as patient and loving as Maitland? Add to this a mystery—a childhood acquaintance to Daphne is killed and the pages turn rapidly.

“I am not angry with you, Daphne,” he said moving to kneel before her, which should have made her uncomfortable, but instead made her heart beat faster. “I am angry with him. For making you feel threatened. “For using you to make money because he was too damned lousy with a hand of cards to make up for himself.  But I am most enraged at him because he forced you to blackmail him in order to protect yourself from being sold like a brood mare to the highest bidder.”

[Read more...]

Jun 21 2017 8:01am

The Big, Real Love Behind The Big Sick

Meeting your girlfriend's parents is stressful. Meeting you girlfriend's parents after you've secretly been dating for a year because you can't tell your parents but then your girlfriend goes into a coma... yeah, that's a whole knew galaxy of stressful, but that's the premise of Kumail Nanjiani's autobiographical romantic comedy, The Big Sick. 

Watch the trailer and tell us what you think of this unconventional love story down in the comments!


Jun 20 2017 4:30pm

Try This Forbidden Fruit: Romance News & Deals from Beverly Jenkins, Alexa Riley, 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

Forbidden by Beverly Jenkins

Deal Alert: Beverly Jenkins' historical romance Forbidden is $2.99 at Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | Amazon | etc.* Forbidden is a stimulating story that unfolds in the backdrop of the Old West, featuring a hero whose appearance doesn’t reflect to the world a major part of him.” Rhine Fontaine is a black man who passes for white, allowing him to become a prosperous man. His carefully planned out life is thrown completely off-kilter when Eddy, a black woman, walks into his life. Check out even more non-Regency historicals. 

Deal Alert: Alexa Riley's contemporary romance Everything for Her is $.99 at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | etc.* An H&H staffer asserts that “Alexa Riley are the current reigning champs of kinktemporary”—an erotic romance without BDSM elements geared more towards contemporary romance readers. In Everything For Her, billionaire Miles sets his sights on Mallory and is determined to have her in his life and in his bed. What other trends have you enjoyed so far this year?

Deal Alert: Ali Parker's hockey romance Breakaway is FREE at iBooks | Kobo | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | etc.* Captain of the hockey team Lucas White is a hard-hitting guy who isn't at all interested in getting into a relationship—especially not with Aubrey Moore, his teammate's little sister. However, Aubrey's already got her sights set on the surly captain. Hockey and romance are made for one another...seriously! 

Deal Alert: Colleen Oakley's women's fiction novel Close Enough to Touch is $1.99 at Kobo | iBooks | Barnes & Noble | Amazon | etc.* Jubilee Jenkins has an extremely rare skin disease and after finishing high school lives apart from the world for 10 years, when she has to be get a job. Enter Eric Keegan, divorced father of two. The two meet serendipitously and their slow-burn romance intensifies in this unique and heart-warming romance. 

[+Lois & Superman...]

Jun 20 2017 2:00pm

Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveals from E.J. Russell, Eli Lang, and Jackie Ashenden

Team H&H has covers for upcoming romances from authors E.J. Russell, Eli Lang, and Jackie Ashenden. Take a look at what's coming this fall and early next year! 

Bad Boy’s Bard by E.J. Russell

Bad Boy’s Bard by E.J. Russell

As far as rock star Gareth Kendrick, the last true bard in Faerie, is concerned, the only good Unseelie is . . . well . . . there’s no such thing. Two centuries ago, an Unseelie lord abducted Gareth’s human lover, Niall, and Gareth has neither forgotten nor forgiven.

Niall O’Tierney, half-human son of the Unseelie King, had never lost a wager until the day he swore to rid the Seelie court of its bard. That bet cost him everything: his freedom, his family—and his heart. When he’s suddenly face-to-face with Gareth at the ceremony to join the Seelie and Unseelie realms, Niall does the only thing inhumanly possible: he fakes amnesia. Not his finest hour, perhaps, but he never revealed his Unseelie heritage, and to tell the truth now would be to risk Gareth’s revulsion—far harder to bear than two hundred years of imprisonment.

Then a new threat to Gareth’s life arises, and he and Niall stage a mad escape into the Outer World, only to discover the fate of all fae resting on their shoulders. But before they can save the realm, they have to tackle something really tough: mending their own broken relationship.

Learn more about or pre-order a copy of Bad Boy’s Bard by E.J. Russell, available September 18, 2017 from Riptide Publishing.

[+ 2 more covers]

Jun 20 2017 1:00pm

Games: A Gateway to Romance

Source: Shutterstock

Long before HD television and the rise of video games whose graphics you can actually tell apart, I fell in love with the love of a Playstation 1 game. I believe it was elementary school/beginning of junior high that a much-loved game (by me, not necessarily critics), came out called Fantasy VIII. Up to this point, I had read American Girl, Dear America, Sweet Valley High, Babysitter’s Club and more. They brushed around the concept of romance, but Final Fantasy VIII was the first time I actually got to semi-live the romantic story.

Let me be clear, this game is absolutely bonkers with a really incoherent plot. Basically you play a broody, not-quite douchey but almost there hero named Squall. Squall goes to a military academy, things happen and he eventually meet Rinoa, the manic pixie dream girl who later turns out to be a sorceress. The two have a great meet-cute where she forces him into a waltz and then disappears. It was a great cut scene. Long story short is that evil sorceresses (mainly just one) are screwing things up, somehow time travel/body transitioning is involved, eventually you get an airship and it kind of all goes from there. The ending leaves a lot to be desired, there’s some arguments to whether the hero is dead, but if you watch the ending credits there are a ton of hints that he’s not. (It’s clearly a happily for now).

[Read more...]

Jun 20 2017 12:00pm

Liz Jacobs Excerpt: Abroad

Liz Jacobs

Abroad: Book One by Liz Jacobs

Nick Melnikov doesn't know where he belongs. He was just a kid when his Russian-Jewish family immigrated to Michigan. Now he's in London for university, overwhelmed by unexpected memories. Socially anxious, intensely private, and closeted, Nick doesn't expect to fall in so quickly with a tight-knit group of students from his college, and it's both exhilarating and scary. Hanging out with them is a roller coaster of serious awkward and incredible longing, especially when the most intimidating of the group, Dex, looks his way.
Dex Cartwell knows exactly who he is: a black queer guy who doesn't give a toss what anybody thinks of him. He is absolutely, one-hundred-percent, totally in control of his life. Apart, maybe, from the stress of his family's abrupt move to an affluent, largely white town. And worrying about his younger brother feeling increasingly isolated as a result. And the persistent broken heart he's been nursing for a while…

When Nick and Dex meet, both find themselves intrigued. Countless late-night conversations only sharpen their attraction. But the last thing Nick wants is to face his deepest secret, and the last thing Dex needs is another heartache. Dex has had to fight too hard for his right to be where he is. Nick isn't even sure where he's from. So how can either of them tell where this is going?

Get a sneak peek at Liz Jacobs's Abroad (available June 27, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

“You've got an accent when pissed, did you know that?”

Nick clamped a hand over his mouth. He mumbled something but Dex couldn't make out a single word. He was across the bed before he could think about it and grabbed Nick's wrist to pull his hand away from his mouth. He felt them both stop breathing for a moment.

“Sorry.” His throat felt like he had gorged himself on wine-flavoured candy floss. Their pulses thrummed in counter-rhythm. Nick's wordless music saved them from having to hear only their hard breathing. ”What were you saying?"

[Read the full Abroad excerpt...]

Jun 20 2017 9:30am

First Look: Sarah MacLean’s The Day of the Duchess (June 27, 2017)

The Day of the Duchess by Sarah MacLean

Sarah MacLean
The Day of the Duchess (Scandal & Scoundrel #3)
Avon / June 27, 2017 / $7.99 print & digital 

Note: This review will leave you absolutely dying to read Sarah MacLean's The Day of the Duchess, however, it does contain some light spoilers so if you don't want to be spoiled at all, come back to discuss once you've read the book! 

My initial review looked like this:

The Day of the Duchess is the best book Sarah MacLean has ever written. You should read it immediately.

Heroes & Heartbreakers tells me that you might like a more thorough review, however, so here we are. In order to contain the SQUEE, I’ve broken it down into three parts…

Did Sarah answer all of my/our questions?

Back in January, I wrote a post speculating about this book. I had so many questions, particularly about Sera’s pregnancy and whereabouts. Some pretty heavy spoilers drop in the first 50 pages of the book, so I’m going to be a little cagey in this review. Let’s just say that all of the questions are answered.

Sera wants a divorce because she wants to own property, something she can’t do as a married woman, since women aren’t legal entities in 1836. She also wants, after nearly 3 years of hiding, to finally be free of her past with Malcom, Duke of Haven. Sera is a complex heroine who is competent, grieving, and mad as hell. Sarah MacLean writes books with feminist overtones, but this may be her most feminist book yet. Sera is a heroine to cheer for, but she’s not perfect. She’s strong but flawed, smart but blinded by emotion, jaded but hopeful.

“The whole world thinks you ruined me before you married me, when the truth is that I was not ruined until after the fact. You ruined my hopes. My dreams. My future. You ruined my life. And I’ve had enough of that. I am here for one reason only, Your Grace. I want my life back. The one you stole.”

Was Haven successfully redeemed?

[Read more...]

Jun 20 2017 8:04am

How Do You Define “Old School Romance”?

“Old School Romance” is having a moment in the genre. Nostalgia is as well in the general zeitgeist of our country right now, so it comes as no surprise that this theme has permeated our genre too. However, the idea of old school romance can mean something different to each reader. Is it a certain decade that best encompasses old school romance? Is it a certain feeling? If you had to define “old school romance,” how would you? 

Tell us your definitions down in the comments!