Sexy Contemporary Sampler Sexy Contemporary Sampler Cherrie Lynn, Jessica Linden and Elizabeth Hayley Start reading now! <i>Single-Minded</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Single-Minded: Exclusive Excerpt Lisa Daily "Alex navigates the booby-trapped world of modern dating" <i>Oversight</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Oversight: Exclusive Excerpt Santino Hassell "A broad-shouldered, tattooed lumbersexual with a man-bun and a steely gaze..." <i>Coach's Challenge</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Coach's Challenge: Exclusive Excerpt Avon Gale "Succumb to the passion that might cost them everything..."
From The Blog
June 27, 2017
Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveals from Gracie, Hassell, and Blair
Team H & H
June 27, 2017
Sexy Contemporary Sampler
Cherrie Lynn, Jessica Linden and Elizabeth Hayley
June 24, 2017
ICYMI: June’s Free E-Book, Psy-Changeling, Top Lorraine Heath, and more!
Team H & H
June 23, 2017
5 Reasons You Should Listen to Audiobooks
Nicole Leapheart
June 23, 2017
A Definitive Ranking of Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson Books
Maggie Boyd
Tue
Jun 27 2017 3:00pm

5 Unusual Historical Best Bets for June 2017

What sort of “not-your-usual historical” are you looking for this month? 

Summer is in full swing, which means here in the United States we’re gearing up for our annual celebration of independence from England on July 4th.  Publishers must have gotten that memo. For fans of Westerns and American-set historical romance, June is proving to be a gift. But fans of Mother England shouldn’t fret. She makes an appearance in June as well.

Western!

A Touch of Frost by Jo Goodman

A Touch of Frost by Jo Goodman

(Amazon | B&N | Kobo)

After his train is robbed at gunpoint, Remington Frost awakens from a blow to find the bandits gone…along with the woman he was shadowing for protection. No stranger to risk, Remington will do what it takes to bring Phoebe Apple to safety and her kidnappers to justice. But ransoming Phoebe is just the start of trouble…

Phoebe is shocked to learn that her mysterious rescuer is none other than Remington Frost, the son of her sister’s new husband. Home at Twin Star Ranch, she falls happily into western life—and cautiously in love with Remington. But danger hides close to home, and their romance illuminates a web of secrets and betrayal that may put the rancher and his intended bride past the point of rescue.

Goodman is one of the finest practitioners of historical western romance, and this one has received the expected accolades.  Library Journal declares “A smart, resourceful heroine and a savvy, worthy hero drive the complex plot of this touching story; another winner,” and All About Romance granted it Desert Island Keeper status saying “it’s a feast for the heart and mind.”

[+4 more Best Bets ahead!]

Tue
Jun 27 2017 2:00pm

Cover Tuesday: Exclusive Reveals from Anne Gracie, Santino Hassell, and Mackenzie Blair

Team H&H is already anticipating these upcoming titles from authors Anne Gracie, Santino Hassell, and Mackenzie Blair. Check out the great covers below and the romances coming soon! 

Marry in Scandal by Anne Gracie

Marry in Scandal by Anne Gracie

Young heiress Lily Rutherford has always dreamed of true love. But after an abduction attempt, she faces a scandal-forced marriage to her rescuer, Ned Galbraith, a well-known rake. Despite his reputation, Lily is drawn toward Galbraith, who has the saddest eyes she's ever seen. She marries him in the hope that their union will lead to love.

As heir to a barony, Galbraith knows he must marry, so a convenient marriage will suit him perfectly. He doesn't expect Lily to try to get close to him, to draw out the darkness of his past. To keep his secrets safe, he refuses to let her in—no matter how attracted he is to her quiet, beautiful warmth.

But when rumors about her husband become too much for her to bear, Lily runs away, taking refuge at Galbraith's family estate. As Lily decides if she can reconcile herself to a marriage without love, Galbraith begins to discover that this warm-hearted loving girl might be the key to healing the wounds of his past—and his heart.

Marry in Scandal by Anne Gracie, will be available April 3, 2018.

[+ 2 more covers]

Tue
Jun 27 2017 1:00pm

First Look: Gayle Callen’s Love with a Scottish Outlaw (June 27, 2017)

Love with a Scottish Outlaw by Gayle Callen,

Gayle Callen
Love with a Scottish Outlaw (Highland Weddings #3)
Avon / June 27, 2017 / $7.99 print, $5.99 digital

Gayle Callen’s Love with a Scottish Outlaw is a story replete with many tried and true romance novel tropes. There’s the Scottish Clan Feud.

Catriona Duff was the daughter of Aberfoyle, the chief of the Clan Duff and Duncan’s bitter enemy. Aberfoyle was one of the main reasons that Duncan was an outlaw who had to protect and feed his people while on the run.

Catriona’s father is part of a network of men who take orphan children off the streets and sell them as indentured servants to the colonies and West Indies plantations. When orphans weren’t readily available, they began taking children from Duncan’s clan. He and his men have been doing what they could to recover them.

“Laird Carlyle,” she said, “have you been rescuing children for long?”

He shrugged. “Several year now. ‘Tis why we’re living in these caves. I spoke out, tried to bring the case to the Court of Session, and they had me imprisoned.”

[Read more...]

Tue
Jun 27 2017 12:00pm
Excerpt

Sexy Contemporary Sampler from Cherrie Lynn, Jessica Linden & Elizabeth Hayley

Cherrie Lynn, Jessica Linden and Elizabeth Hayley

Contemporary romance is one of our favorite genres to read—especially when they turn up the heat like in these sexy contemporaries from Cherrie Lynn, Jessica Linden, and Elizabeth Hayley. Get a taste of each of these upcoming romance novels with exclusive excerpts of selected scenes that will leave you panting for more!

[Read the excerpts...]

Tue
Jun 27 2017 9:30am

Steve Trevor and the Rise of the Softer Hero

Strong, capable heroines and the men who love them is a trend I can certainly get behind.

One of my favorite parts of Wonder Woman (besides all of it) is the portrayal of Steve Trevor. In my previous article about the film, I reference how their love story doesn't diminish Diana or her strength in any way, and that got me thinking about other men who fill the “love interest” role in films and television. 

Steve is my latest obvious example of a softer kind of hero. I don't mean soft to be diminutive in any fashion. More as a foil to overt hyper-masculinity that can be regressive. In other words, I enjoy Steve immensely because he's not an alpha asshole. There are so many men who fill this role, even in films or TV shows where they are decidedly not the focus, the narrative presents them in such a way where they are incapable of relinquishing a power they believe is theirs to wield. 

[But not Steve...]

Tue
Jun 27 2017 8:08am

Should Foil Covers Come Back?

Earlier this week on our Tumblr we spotted Romancing the Bookworm showing off a copy of Jo Goodman's The Captain's Lady, which was in beautiful condition—foil cover and all (you'll have to click the link to the video to check it out as this cover doesn't do it justice). It's a cover treatment that is reminiscent of a time gone by as we definitely don't see irridescent covers like this anymore. Even back then, “foil” covers, as they are called, were a pretty rare find. Now, though, their unique shimmer brings forth all those nostalgic feelings.

Now, this question may leave those who joined the romance world in the last decade—i.e. when many people are buying exclusively in digital—scratching their heads and saying “huh?” However, would you want to see foil covers come back? Did you own any? Did you like them?

Tell us about it in the comments!

 

Mon
Jun 26 2017 5:00pm

Paranormal Activity: E-Deals from Sherrilyn Kenyon, J.D. Robb & 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

Ice Wolf by Jane GodmanDeal Alert: Jane Godman's shapeshifter romance Ice Wolf, Book 1 in the Arctic Brotherhood series, is $.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* An Alaskan college professor by day, Elliott Walder is a revenge-seeking Siberian werewolf by night, and he can't afford the distraction that is new recruit Jenny... (Pssst: Shadow Wolf, Book 2 in the series, is also on sale at $1.99.) Read Chapter 1 from Ice Wolf.

Deal Alert: Sherrilyn Kenyon's paranormal Born of Legend, Book 9 in The League series, is $2.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* When outlaw Dagger saves her son's life, Ushara must choose between the man she owes everything and her own people. Sample a scene from Born of Legend.

Deal Alert: J.D. Robb, Mary Blayney, Elaine Fox, Mary Kay McComas, and R.C. Ryan's Down the Rabbit Hole anthology is $1.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* Five Alice in Wodnerland-inspired stories, including an Eve Dallas adventure? What's not to like?! Discover the 10 things you'll learn from J.D. Robb's In Death series.

Deal Alert: Nalini Singh's shapeshifter romance Tangle of Need, Book 11 in the Psy-Changeling series, is $1.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* Wolf changeling Adria and SnowDancer Riaz try hard to deny the magnetic pull between them, but resistance is futile... Get to know the Psy-Changeling books.

[+Now's the time to meet the Bourbon Kings...]

Mon
Jun 26 2017 2:00pm

5 Reasons to Say “I Do” When You Really Want to Say “I Don’t”

Black Tie Optional by Ann Marie WalkerMarriages of convenience: Super common in romance novels, not so common in real life. Ann Marie Walker (Black Tie Optional) is here at Heroes and Heartbreakers today to give us a few reasons that we should maybe consider a marriage of convenience should we be faced with these same issues. Thanks, Ann Marie!

I'm a sucker for a good rom-com, and one of my favorite tropes is the marriage of convenience. So it was no surprise when I sat down to write my new novel, and the first scene was a hippie humanitarian lobbying an uptight CEO during his morning Starbucks run, I just knew they had to get married! (Preferably in Vegas with Elvis and Angus Young officiating!) To celebrate the release of Black Tie Optional, I thought I'd take a moment to consider five reasons to say “I do” when you really mean “I don't”:

1.  To save your family home.

In The Marriage Bargain by Jennifer Probst, Alexa agrees to marry childhood friend Nick for one year. All she has to do is keep it professional. But can she avoid falling for the man who stole her heart when they were kids?

[Read more...]

Mon
Jun 26 2017 1:00pm

First Look: Tamsen Parker’s The Cartographer (June 26, 2017)

The Cartographer by Tamsen Parker

Tamsen Parker 
The Cartographer (Compass #6)
Tamsen Parker / June 26, 2017 / $14.99 print, $3.99 digital

Helping people is the best, most important thing I can do.  It’s what I’ve chosen to be faithful to instead of whom.

Reyes (Rey) Llewelyn Walter calls himself a life coach. A purveyor of happiness. A kinky white knight. As the master of BDSM (no pun intended), Rey loves to dive in and work his magic on those he feels could benefit from his tutelage. Which, in his opinion, is everyone. He loves to create happily ever afters or happy for now(s), but refuses to even consider the same for himself. That is until a stop for a nightcap at a local watering hole introduces him to a gorgeous young man who screams masochist to Rey’s sadist.

Just you wait. You have no idea what else I’m going to ask you for.

Aloysius (Allie) Emmett Hart II is a man with a mission. With the face of an angel and a body made for sinning, Allie is fresh out of the military and trying to find a job and a place to live while helping take care of his widowed sister and her kids. Strong, independent, and under a mountain of obligations, Allie isn’t looking for a boyfriend—or a savior.

[Read more...]

Mon
Jun 26 2017 11:31am

Veep’s Amy and Dan Are WHAT?! (Season Finale Spoilers)

Dan and Amy in Veep

WARNING: Major spoilers for the Veep Season 6 finale.

Veep's Amy Brookheimer and Dan Egan have been locked in a will-they-or-won't-they love/hate relationship for so long now that you could be forgiven for thinking it would never happen, especially given that the scales have long seemed tipped toward “hate” and the two hardly interacted at all in Season 6. But patience comes to those who wait...and wait...and wait, apparently, because shippers got the shock of a lifetime in last night's season finale, when Amy revealed that she's pregnant—and that Dan's the father.

[We've gotta discuss this...]

Mon
Jun 26 2017 9:30am

First Look: Jeaniene Frost’s The Sweetest Burn (June 27, 2017)

 The Sweetest Burn by Jeaniene Frost

Jeaniene Frost
The Sweetest Burn (Broken Destiny #2)
HQN / June 27, 2017 / $7.99 print, $6.99 digital

The Sweetest Burn brings a gotta-save-the-day-paced plot, a great dose of the supernatural, and chemistry that sparks. All of those elements are practically expected in a Jeaniene Frost book at this point. She’s the woman who brought us Cat and Bones, Vlad and Leila, after all.

What makes The Sweetest Burn’s Ivy and Adrian’s relationship so remarkable is the way each character’s internal conflict about their relationship fuels the delicious will they won’t they. Ivy is destined to fall in love with Adrian. Adrian is destined to betray her in the ultimate way—the kind that is supposed to leave Ivy dead. They both know these facts. It’s more than a Capulet/Montague thing. This isn’t families warring. It’s Heaven and Hell. Their free will may let them avoid fate, but how can they trust each other?

[Read more...]

Mon
Jun 26 2017 8:02am

Have You Read Any Series Continuities?

Continuity (noun): the unbroken and consistent existence or operation of something over a period of time.

When this word is applied to a new book series, it can really change things. It means that a series you're excited about will be taken on by not one single author, but many! Continuities aren't a new concept, but we're starting to see them more and more in romance. 

Have you read any series that have more than one author attached? What did you think? What have been your favorite examples? Has it lead you to discover any new authors? 

Tell me about it in the comments!

 

Sun
Jun 25 2017 12:00pm
Excerpt

Lisa Daily Excerpt: Single-Minded

Lisa Daily

Single-Minded by Lisa Daily

Alex has planned and executed her life with laser focus since she first met her future husband at the play-doh table on the first day of kindergarten. They have a terrific life, a gorgeous house on the bay, and fantastic careers they love. There's only one problem: Alex's husband has a secret. A big one.

Now, Alex’s perfectly planned life has completely fallen apart, her biological clock is starting to feel like the timer on a nuclear device, and she finds herself drooling over her completely-dreamy-but-definitely-off-limits client, a star chef opening a hot new restaurant.

Armed with dating guidance from her oddball collection of advisers—including her gay ex-husband, a foul-mouthed political consultant, a perkily masochistic yogi, and a pot-smoking octogenarian—Alex navigates the booby-trapped world of modern dating, in her search for a second chance at love.

Get a sneak peek at Lisa Daily's Single-Minded (available June 27, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

“There are nine guys you have to date before you meet the one you actually fall in love with. Just sleep with two of them and you’ll be all set,” says Darcy. “It’s mandatory, like leveling up in a video game … The bad boy, the quarterback…”

“… the foreign guy, the tantric sex guy, the sensitive artist…,” adds Sam.

[Read the full Single-Minded excerpt...]

Sun
Jun 25 2017 11:00am

5 Science Fiction Romance Best Bets for June 2017

Mars Ho by Jennifer Willis

Time to talk about some scifi romance Best Bets from new releases in late May and June.

It was probably inevitable that someone would mix reality shows and the idea of sending people to Mars. Jennifer Willis does a pretty good job with the concept in her new book Mars Ho! (Amazon)  As the book’s blurb says, What would you do for a one-way trip to Mars? The idea is that the reality show exists alongside the world’s space programs and the production team allegedly works with the scientists to assemble a team of eight individuals to establish a new colony on Mars. The actual fact of the situation is that all the tropes of shows like The Bachelor, Survivor, and Big Brother come into play—the scheming, strategizing, alliances, producer shenanigans, real and contrived emergencies…and in the middle of it are Lori Ridgway and Mark Lauren, two decent people with high level skills, who really want to go to Mars. But can they trust each other? Can anyone trust anyone?

The meet-cute as the show begins, with contestants giving up all their personal possessions to don the corporate logo-branded uniforms. (Corporate branding of literally everything the contestants touch, wear or consume is a hilarious and all-too-true running joke in the book.) Lori is lingering over her Victoria’s Secret lingerie and Mark enters the wrong dressing room by mistake. The producers are salivating over the encounter, as you can imagine, especially since he’s naked, so they let the scene go on. Mark says, “How are you supposed to say goodbye to the Earth if you can’t even let go of your underwear?” Yes, but doesn’t he understand it’s high end purple lace underwear?!

[Read more...]

Sat
Jun 24 2017 12:00pm
Excerpt

Santino Hassell Excerpt: Oversight

Santino Hassell

Holden Payne has it all . . . or so he thinks. As heir to the founder of the Community—an organization that finds, protects, and manages psychics—he’s rich, powerful, and treated like royalty. But after a series of disappearances and murders rock the Community, he’s branded the fall guy for the scandal and saddled with a babysitter.

Sixtus Rossi is a broad-shouldered, tattooed lumbersexual with a man-bun and a steely gaze. He’s also an Invulnerable—supposedly impervious to both psychic abilities and Holden’s charms. It’s a claim Holden takes as a challenge. Especially if sleeping with Six may help him learn whether the Community had more to do with the disappearances than they claimed.

As Holden uncovers the truth, he also finds himself getting in deep with the man sent to watch him. His plan to seduce Six for information leads to a connection so intense that some of Six’s shields come crashing down. And with that comes a frightening realization: Holden has to either stand by the Community that has given him everything, or abandon his old life to protect the people he loves.

Get a sneak peek at Santino Hassell's Oversight (available June 26, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

“What if we traded?”

Again, Six just stared at him. This beautiful personification of blankness but with burning black eyes.

“What if you answer one measly little question, and I give you something good in return?”

“Money?”

“I was thinking more along the lines of sex.”

“I’d prefer money.”

[Read the full Oversight excerpt...]

Fri
Jun 23 2017 4:36pm

A Race Against the Clock: Romance News & Deals from Catherine Coulter 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

Hemlock Bay by Catherine CoulterDeal Alert: Catherine Coulter's sixth Savich and Sherlock suspense novel, Hemlock Bay, is #1.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* FBI agents Dillon Savich and Lacey Sherlock's latest case hits close to home as they race to uncover the truth about Savich's sister's car accident. Was it a suicide attempt or sabotage? Here's what you need to know about the (too?) long-running series...

Deal Alert: Iris Johansen's retro romance The Lady and the Unicorn, first published in 1983, is $1.99 in e-book at Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks | etc.* Billionaire Rafe is confined to his home as he recovers from a nasty bout of pneumonia and he's going stir-crazy until lovely game warden Janna sneaks onto his property. She's determined to convince him to give her the land she needs to save endangered animals, and he's determined to have her... Strike it rich with more billionaire heroes recommended by fellow readers.

Deal Alert: Marina Adair's contemporary romance Chasing I Do, first in The Eastons series, is $1.99 in e-book at Amazon.* After learning her fiance is cheating, Darcy runs out of the wedding while carrying a big secret: She's pregnant. When she runs into her ex's brother, Gage, a couple years later, she can't help but be drawn to him, and he to her... How do you feel about the secret baby trope?

[+Tiffany Reisz cover & Pride Month deals!...]

Fri
Jun 23 2017 2:00pm

“We would play video games together all the time”: 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!


TeddyP had a true friends to lovers story

TeddyP in Games: A Gateway to Romance

Before my girlfriend and I started dating, we would play video games together all the time. Our love for video gaming was part of the reason we became such close friends. Fast-forward 5 years, one things led to another and we ended up falling in love with each other (friends to lover trope).

The first night we first kissed we were in the middle of playing the game Bioshock... a game we have played together 2 other times. 3 years later, we are still playing video games together... and still kissing.

So, yeah, video games DO lead to romance... and it is frakin' sweet.

[+2 more comments of the week]

Fri
Jun 23 2017 1:00pm

5 Reasons You Should Listen to Audiobooks

Source: Shutterstock

Audiobooks aren’t new, and certainly with the popularity of apps like Overdrive and Audible, there is more accessibility than ever. Recently I have become obsessed with audiobooks, in no small part because my workload leaves my brain nothing but sludge at the end of the day. If you haven’t listened to a book in a while, this summer is the perfect time to get into the habit. You won’t regret it! Make no mistake however; a terrible narrator or terrible source material can turn you off, but it’s worth the risk and here’s why:

1. It’s the perfect opportunity to reconnect with your favorite reads.

Many moons ago when I discovered The Black Dagger Brotherhood book series, I also discovered Jim Frangione’s voice in the audiobooks, and the same goes for Kimberly Alexis, who has been the voice for most of the Anita Blake series audiobooks. The perfect synergy of voice and source material can take your imagination to another level, just when you think you know the story by heart.

[Read more...]

Fri
Jun 23 2017 12:05pm
Excerpt

Avon Gale Excerpt: Coach’s Challenge

Avon Gale

It's been decades since blackmail forced Troy Callahan to retire from playing professional hockey, and he's built a successful career behind the bench. When he's offered the opportunity to coach the Asheville Ravens—the most hated team in the ECHL—he's convinced that his no-nonsense attitude is just what the team needs to put their focus back on hockey. But Troy is disheartened when he finds that the Ravens have signed Shane North, a player known for his aggression. And it only gets worse when Shane's rough good looks give Troy inappropriate thoughts about a member of his team, even if Shane's set to retire at the end of the season.

Shane's career in the majors never quite took off. Wanting to quit on his own terms, Shane agrees to a one-year contract with the Ravens and finds himself playing for a coach who thinks he's an aging goon and with a team that doesn't trust him, the coach, or each other. Despite his determination to not get involved, Shane unwillingly becomes part of the team... and is just as unwillingly drawn to the gruff out-and-proud coach. As the Ravens struggle to build a new identity, Shane and Troy succumb to the passion that might cost them everything.

Get a sneak peek at Avon Gale's Coach's Challenge (available June 26, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

They were both silent as the bartender returned with two drinks—Shane’s Coke had two cherries that time—and took Callahan’s bill with an air kiss when Callahan told him gruffly to keep the change.

“So this at least answers my question.”

[Read the full Coach’s Challenge excerpt...]