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Showing posts by: Lisa Hughey click to see Lisa Hughey's profile
Aug 28 2011 12:00pm

Fresh Meat: Cherry Adair’s Riptide (August 30, 2011)

Riptide by Cherry AdairMany contemporary romances, and frequently romantic suspense novels, lack a key component of a great romance story. A reason for these two people to fall in love. In suspense novels, they are on the run, facing danger, and come together in a time of stress. Then—bam!—at the end of the book, they’re in love and plan to live happily ever after. And I’m left with the question: Why?

Cherry Adair always delivers an edge-of-your-seat suspense plot. But in Riptide, she also beautifully balances the action with the developing romance between Nick and Bria.

The parallels between Nick and Bria work very well: They both have emotional issues surrounding relationships; Bria because her parents were murdered and she was taken away and raised by her bodyguard. Nick because his father cheated continuously and took him and his brothers away from their mother before she died. Bria has a long lost brother she’d like to be closer to. Nick has just discovered he’s got a half-brother he wants nothing to do with.

[Yeah, wow, that’s some serious baggage...]

Apr 13 2011 10:00am

Apocalypse Now—and Forever: The Allure of Dystopian Romance

“Stronger than a mushroom cloud” image

Publishing has given rise to a new sub-genre of romance: The dystopian romance. Love in the time of the apocalypse. For those of you wondering (for what it is worth, I had to look this up the first time I heard the term), the official definition of dystopia is:

a society characterized by human misery, as squalor, oppression, disease, and overcrowding. OR: an imaginary place where everything is as bad as it can be [C19 (coined by John Stuart Mill ): from dys- + Utopia ]

Myself, I think of dystopia as the opposite of utopia. Which is why I kind of love the idea of combining dystopia and romance. Total devastation. New relationship. At first glance, it’s a complete mismatch. Romance is theoretically flowers and candy and sunshine and happiness, not the annihilation of the Earth, the complete breakdown of society, and the creation of zombie creatures.

[I'm feelin' the love already...]

Mar 27 2011 12:00pm

Revenge Is a Dish Best Served Smokin’: Romantic Suspense Recommendations

Crime SceneRevenge plots in romances never fail to deliver incredibly emotional reads. The hero or heroine’s raison d’être is inherently fueled by passion: Passion for justice, steeped in fury and righteous wrath with all these huge emotions already in play on page one, often before the protagonists even meet.

The reader knows these characters have already endured great tragedy and more is on the way because vengeance is guaranteed to end in tragedy for someone. This isn’t going to be some lightweight read. The story will have some heft to it.

[Feel the tension...]

Mar 26 2011 3:00pm

KhageMatchh: Zsadist vs. Rehvenge

Welcome to the last pair in Part I of II in the Black Dagger Brotherhood KhageMatchh! (Battle Wrath vs. Phury is here; Vishous vs. Butch is here; Rhage vs. John Matthew is here.)

So far, the winners are Wrath, Vishous and Rhage!

For the last pair, we've got Zsadist against Rehvenge.  

Read the KhageMatchh  and then tell us which of the two tortured souls Brothers has won your heart by commenting below.

And by being a registered user who leaves a comment, you'll also be entered to for a chance to win a Heroes and Heartbreakers totebag!  We'll randomly draw a name from the registered commenters who've got comments time-stamped by 3/26 midnight tonight (PST).

Not registered with the site? Click here.

Editor's Note, 3/28/11: Congratulations to KhageMatchh winner ZSADIST and #1 bimmergrl!  Send an email to info[at]heroesandheartbreakers[dotcom] to claim your prize.

Now is the time to claim your Brother.

Get ready to ruuuuumble!

[Zsadist vs. Rehvenge!]

Mar 16 2011 6:00pm

Fresh Meat: Eileen Dreyer’s Never A Gentleman (March 29, 2011)

Never a Gentleman by Eileen Dreyer

Eileen Dreyer
Never A Gentleman
Forever Books, March 29, 2011 $7.99


Miss Grace Fairchild is under no illusions about her charms. Painfully plain, she is a soldier's daughter who has spent her life being useful, not learning the treacherous ways of the ton. She may have been caught in a scandal with society's favorite rogue, but how can she marry him when it means losing herself?


Diccan Hilliard doesn't know which of his enemies drugged him and dumped him in Grace's bed, but he does know the outcome. He and Grace must marry. To his surprise, a wild, heady passion flares between them. Yet Diccan is trapped in a deadly game of intrigue Grace knows nothing about. Will his lies destroy Grace just as he realizes how desperately he needs her? And how can he hope for a future with her, when an old enemy has set his murderous sights on them both?

[Deadly passion! Murderous sights! Eileen Dreyer!]

Mar 2 2011 5:00pm

The Food-Love Connection

cupcakes image courtesy of bossacafez via FlickrFood nowadays is about convenience. How much time do we have to plan and cook and clean up? Meals are just another task in increasingly busy days. Food is fuel. And it seems as if we aren’t supposed to enjoy the food we prepare.

But what if food means more than fuel? Two recent romances explore the deep emotional connection we, especially as women, have with food.

[Click for a full helping . . .]

Feb 25 2011 12:30pm

Drive Me Wild: Shapeshifters Bring the Heat

Wolf image by dobak via FlickrI have a friend who doesn’t “get” shape-shifter romances. That’s because she sees the romance only on the surface of animal/human interaction. She isn’t able to look beneath the overt differences to the qualities that make shifter romances appealing. Community, overwhelming passion, and a lifetime of fidelity are what readers find compelling about these stories.

One central theme in shifter romances is the focus on the pack or clan, which is in essence a small community that looks after and protects its own. In a world of increasingly far-flung families, spread out from our safety net, this sense of community is incredibly attractive. The knowledge that you have people watching your back, willing to care for you and your family if something goes wrong, allows a layer of insulation against the stresses of today.

[Wonder what else lies beneath the surface? . . .]

Feb 17 2011 10:00am

I Was Told to Like You: Marriage of Convenience Plots

I have a not-so-secret-anymore love of marriage of convenience plots. (Not so much in historical romances because marriage between strangers was an accepted part of social hierarchy.) I love marriage of convenience plots in contemporary romance where the hero and heroine aren’t necessarily legally married, they just have to live together in forced intimacy.

Ryan Reynolds and Sandra Bullock in The Proposal

Nowadays, in most cultures, people have the right to choose their own partners. So when you take away that choice, whether it’s to reach a certain goal (receiving an inheritance) or to perpetrate a deception (agents undercover), the tension that results from two people in close contact with each other and unable to escape sets up such lovely conflict and usually a lot of fireworks.

[And if you are unable to escape your curiosity . . . ]