<i>Suspicious Behavior</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Suspicious Behavior: Exclusive Excerpt L.A. Witt and Cari Z "They find themselves on the tail of a prolific serial killer who’s about to strike again." <i>An Alchemy of Masques and Mirrors</i>: Exclusive Excerpt An Alchemy of Masques and Mirrors: Exclusive Excerpt Curtis Craddock "She unravels the lies of her enemies and discovers a truth..." <i>Love Another Day</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Love Another Day: Exclusive Excerpt Lexi Blake "It might be her own personal demons that could destroy them both." Romance's Most Likely: Nominate Your Fictional Faves! Romance's Most Likely: Nominate Your Fictional Faves! Team H & H Like senior-class superlatives--but with romance novels!
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Showing posts by: Amy Pine click to see Amy Pine's profile
Wed
Jun 14 2017 2:30pm

16 Audiobook Narrators You’ll Have a Crush on by the End of this Post

Source: Shutterstock

I have such a crush on…your voice.

I was brand new to audiobooks in 2012. At the time I was a high school English teacher driving an hour back and forth to grad school one night a week, and I wanted something more than the radio. A colleague had just finished listening to Maggie Stiefvater’s Scorpio Races and said it was one of the best audiobooks he’d ever listened to, so I gave it a shot.

The narrators are Fiona Hardingham as Puck and Steve West as Sean. The story itself is fantastic, but read by these two performers it was utterly magical. Also, something interesting happened. I kind of fell hard for Steve West—‘s voice. I even blogged about it on my short-lived YA blog, ending my review with the wish that I could have Steve West narrate my inner monologue. And he responded to my blog post. And yes I’m still squeeing about years later because yes I still crush on his voice and his audio performances. In fact, I’m currently listening to Laini Taylor’s Strange the Dreamer, narrated by—of course—Steve West.

It wasn't until Steve West commented on my Facebook that I learned audiobooks are more than just having books read to you. Beyond earning some bragging rights, I learned it’s a full-on performance. Single actors can sometimes taking on various roles with such distinguishably different voices that it often astounds me it’s the same person the whole way through. And when you click with the right narrator, it is a transformative experience.

For those of you still on the fence about whether or not to try an audiobook, I’m going to share a list of my narrator crushes with you and the books they performed (with audio samples!) that hooked me. Because now I seek out my favorite narrators as much as I do my favorite authors. For any of you who already adore audiobooks as much as I do, please share your voice crushes in the comments so we can bring more readers over to the audio side. Also, it’s important to note there are so many different ways to listen to audiobooks: CDs, audiobook subscriptions, your public library’s digital collection, etc.

And now for the list! While I read both YA and adult, all books I’m sharing are chock full of what we come to Heroes and Heartbreakers for—ROMANCE!

[Read more...]

Thu
May 25 2017 1:00pm

First Look: Anne Calhoun’s Turn Me Loose (May 30, 2017)

Turn Me Loose by Anne Calhoun

Anne Calhoun
Turn Me Loose (Alpha Ops #3)
St. Martin's Press / May 30, 2017 / $7.99 print & digital 

I love a good second-chance romance, especially if it comes with a heaping side of suspense and off the charts heat, and Anne Calhoun’s Turn Me Loose delivers on all of the above.

Riva Henneman and Ian Hawthorn do not have your typical meet cute…unless you consider the her selling drugs in college and him being the undercover cop to bust her as cute.

Okay, fine. It still kind of was.

 But Riva and Ian’s relationship doesn’t end with that first bust. In order to avoid jail time, she works for him as an informant, helping him take down as much of the college drug ring that she can without ever once telling him the whole truth—that the mastermind behind the whole operation was her own father.

[Read more...]

Thu
Jan 26 2017 5:00pm

The 10 Best Romantic Comedies of All Time!

What are the top 10 romantic comedies of all time? Find out!

The Princess Bride

We love hosting authors on Heroes and Heartbreakers, especially when they are also our bloggers—so with that in mind, we're pleased to welcome A.J. Pine (Worth the Wait) and Jennifer Blackwood (The Rule Maker) to H&H in their author capacity. We tasked them with a pretty hard job—list the greatest romantic comedies of all time—and they certainly delivered. See what they picked! Thanks, A.J. and Jennifer!

Note: All of these romantic comedies are guaranteed with Happy-Ever-Afters. While we love classic love stories like The Notebook and others, you'll only find romantic comedies in the truest sense of the word on this list!

Wait...we can only pick ten? Let’s just start by saying that we know Pride and Prejudice is on the top of everyone’s list—as well as any sort of iteration like Bridget Jones (for A.J.’s generation) or What a Girl Wants (for Jen’s). We’ll just assume you don’t need to be reminded of Austen’s classic. So we’re not leaving it off the list, but already know you’ve already got it on yours.

But still the task is a tough one, one we don’t take lightly.

Okay, Heroes and Heartbreakers. You’ve given us a challenge, and we have nothing else to say other than…

CHALLENGE ACCEPTED.

[And the Best RomComs are...]

Sun
Sep 18 2016 11:00am

Mapping Captain Swan’s Winding Road to Love in Once Upon a Time

Greetings, Captain Swan shippers. I'm here to share my favorite moments of our OTP and—dare I say—try to guess what's in store for them in Season 6.

Once Upon A Time is a show with a great ensemble cast. I truly love each and every character. But my love for Captain Swan runs deeper than the fiery lava of the twisted Underworld Storybrooke.

Let's take a look back at the evolution of my favorite TV heroine and antihero-turned-hero-turned-antihero-turned-hero-again. Then...if we dare...a look into how Mr. Hyde will mess with their future.

I would start with Season 1, but ...no Hook. Good season, but really, our OTP is not here, so let's move on.

At the start of Season 2, after everyone has finally regained their memories and realized they are, in fact, the storybook characters Henry has been reading about, Emma and Mary Margaret/Snow fall through a portal back into the Enchanted Forest,. After meeting up with Mulan and Aurora, they are told they might find a magic bean atop the giant's beanstalk. Who can get Emma to that bean? Why, none other than Captain Hook!

Upon first meeting, they climb a beanstalk together!

Source: summcohen.tumblr.com Source: gentlesleaze.tumblr.com

At the top of bean stalk, Hook takes care of Emma's injured hand, and because she doesn’t trust him, she has to try to resist his first smolder.

[Read more...]

Wed
May 25 2016 4:30pm

First Look: Anne Calhoun’s Under the Surface (May 31, 2016)

Anne Calhoun
Under the Surface (Alpha Ops #4) 
St. Martin's Press / May 31, 2016 / $7.99 print & digital

Sex on a stick, Lord, that’s all I need…walking, talking sex on a stick. If he can mix a decent drink, so much the better.

And so opens Anne Calhoun’s fourth installment (yet first full-length novel) in her Alpha Ops series. Eve Webber is the owner of Eye Candy, a bar/club in Lancaster, PA’s East Side where everyone behind the bar is exactly what the establishment’s name suggests—eye candy.

“Eye Candy isn’t just a bar. It’s an experience. Women come for hot bartenders, dance music, great drinks, and a chance to unwind with girlfriends.”

And Eve is in desperate need of a new bartender. Enter Chad Henderson.

His eyes darkened from hazel to mossy green, and a hint of color stained his cheekbones. Okay, they had chemistry, that heart-pounding, shallow-breathing feeling that meant the pheromones were surging.

Chemistry with me means chemistry with customers, she thought firmly.

[We did NOT fail chemistry in school...]

Thu
Feb 26 2015 5:30pm

First Look: Anne Calhoun’s The List (March 3, 2015)

The List by Anne CalhounAnne Calhoun
The List
Penguin / March 3, 2015 / $15.00 print, $9.99 digital

Matchmaker and stationery shop owner Matilda Davies brings people together. For those on her list, Tilda will find the man or woman of their dreams—whether it’s for an hour or a lifetime. But due to a painful past, the British expat has never put her own name on the list. Instead, she limits herself to emotionless and commitment-free hookups. Then she meets Daniel, who wants not just her body, but also her heart…

Daniel Logan hides the soul of a poet under the suit and tie of an FBI agent. Specializing in financial crimes, he pieces together stories of greed and ensures justice is done. He plays by the rules—until he meets Tilda. He’s drawn in by her passion as well as her mysteriousness. Daniel knows that no matter her secrets, he’s the perfect match for Tilda. But even pleasure doesn’t come with a guarantee…

Let me start by saying that it was less than a year ago that I read my first Anne Calhoun book. I know. What rock have I been under? But I’m happy to say that The List is my fourth Calhoun read in said year, so that should tell you something of how I feel about her books. Two things are certain when you dive in to one of her novels. First, this is erotic romance, people, and her books deliver. But what I find just as appealing as the erotic is the emotion her characters exhibit and the way Calhoun’s exquisite attention to detail conveys the emotional turmoil necessary for her characters to experience before they can grow, and of course, The List does just that.

[So we should put in on our list...]

Fri
Dec 12 2014 10:30am

“Oy with the Poodles Already!” or Top 10 Reasons The Gilmore Girls Will ALWAYS Be Fabulous

What If by AJ Pine Today we're joined by author A.J. Pine, whose book What If is just out, and is the second in her If Only series. What If's heroine has issues with her memory, while the hero can't help but remember what his parents want him to do, even as he tries to forget what he wants. A.J. is here talking about one of her pop  culture references, the Gilmore Girls, and is listing just what made the show so fabulous. Thanks, A.J.!

**Spoiler Alert: This post may contain spoilers, squee-ing, fangirling, and swooning in response to all aired episodes of The Gilmore Girls.**

I’ll be the first to admit that I’m a pop culture addict. It’s a part of who I am, and because of this, it’s a part of who my characters are too. Pop culture references I’ve made in books so far? Friends, Dead Poets Society, '90s Brit Pop songs, The Vampire Diaries, and in my NA romance What If,, I paralleled the love story with one from one of my favorite shows ever, Gilmore Girls. It’s always a risk infusing pop culture into a book because you want the relevance to be untouched by time. So in case you were worried that Gilmore Girls wouldn’t hold up against the years (I know…pshaw, right?), I’m here to ease your mind.

10. BOOKS.

We read the books because we love the books! Of course this has to be the first reason. Rory Gilmore will always be the best example of a true bookworm. She even brings a book to her first dance with Dean. Be still my book-loving heart! Throughout the series, Rory is seen reading 339 books! HERE you can see how many of Rory’s books you’ve read. Or even better—take the Rory Gilmore reading challenge! And then there’s Jess (more on him later), who stole Rory’s book TO MAKE NOTES IN THE MARGIN.

[That's our kind of man...]

Wed
Oct 1 2014 1:00pm

Anticipating The Vampire Diaries Season 6: Say It Ain’t So!

The Vampire Diaries Season 6 PosterLet me start off by saying, SPOILERS. If you are not caught up on TVD, for the love of the undead, SHIELD YOUR EYES.

I’m not going to sugarcoat this—I have severe emotional attachments to my beloved vamps, weres, and vamp hunters. Oh my! And after five seasons I’ve learned that even when TVD rips my heart out and kills off one of my favorite characters (I love you, Alaric), the heartache may not be permanent. Sure, I’ve cried in more than one episode over the years (don’t judge), but the creators have also thrown some pleasant surprises our way (welcome back, Alaric). This is television after all, and these are supernatural creatures. There’s always a way for someone to return.

But season five’s ending was a whopper. Elena sobbing her good-bye to Damon, not knowing he was there to hear it all, and Damon trapped on the other side trying to comfort her? I’m sorry. Let me go mop my heart up off the floor because it exploded out of my chest watching that. Still, I’ve spent the summer rationalizing to myself that Damon and Bonnie can’t be gone for good.
So I’m here, TVD fans and creators, to muster up the strength and prove to all of us that Damon and Bonnie will find a way back, and my heart will beat steadily for my favorite undead, damaged man and the witch who loves to hate him again.

10 Reasons Damon and Bonnie Need to Return

[Let's get counting then...]

Mon
Sep 15 2014 4:30pm

Beta Heroes: Ten Contemporary Romance Heroes Who Show Us That Good = Hot.

**Spoilers! This post may cause a minor to severe reaction to spoilers from books featuring the top contemporary beta heroes—but don't worry, these guys will nurse you back to health.**

I can’t help it. I swoon for the good guy, the guy who even though he’s the right choice for me—ahem, I mean for the heroine, of course—he still makes mistakes along the way that keep us from getting our happily ever after too early in the book. Good does not equal perfect. Perfect is boring. But give me a flawed good guy, the one who has the right stuff but stumbles along with the heroine to get the place where my heart swells and I can’t stop smiling, and I’m a goner.

There are so many good guys in romance, and there’s no way I can cover them all. That’s why I’m going to narrow the focus to the mostly the youngins, the YA and NA nice guy heroes (with a couple of full-fledged grown-ups sprinkled in), because despite not being a YA or NA myself, these are some of my favorite books to read. It’s all about firsts in YA, first love with the guy you wish existed when you went to high school. And in NA, it’s that emerging adult first. Sure some high school relationships last until “I do,” but it’s really in the NA years that we start to really consider the idea of forever. So, who are some of my favorite wish-they-were-my-first-love betas? Read on to find out with the fine print being, DON’T READ ABOUT BOOKS YOU HAVEN’T READ IN CASEOF SPOILERS. Okay, maybe that print is not so fine, but you get the gist.

[Who are we getting introduced to first?]