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Mar 21 2017 9:30am

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Wake a Sleeping Tiger (March 21, 2017)

Wake A Sleeping Tiger by Lora Leigh

Lora Leigh
Wake a Sleeping Tiger (A Novel of the Breeds Series)
Berkley / March 21, 2017 / $26.00 print, $12.99 digital

Lora Leigh is back with her latest book in her sensational The Breeds series, Wake A Sleeping Tiger, which tells the story of Cullen Maverick, twin to Graeme from her previous book, Bengal’s Quest.  

Cullen is a recessed Bengal. Despite his animal being in hiding, he continues to have the additional strength and coordination known to the Breeds. He can sense other Breeds even though they can’t sense him as well as latent instincts that have been coming to the surface since his brother returned to be near him. Cullen spent over 20 years with his inner Bengal mostly locked away until the moment his colleague, Chelsea Martinez, decides to leave her job, which means leaving him.

Chelsea is tired of being kept in a box. She has strong feelings for Cullen but she wants more from life than doing his filing and other lower level assignments. She’s too talented to be boxed away as if fragile. After a recent tragic incident, she makes a move to give herself a chance to move forward with her life and maybe get over Cullen. He, on the other hand, is having none of that. It sets off a chain reaction in which his true inner self is no longer content to hide from the world or from his mate.

[Read more...]

Aug 29 2016 3:30pm

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Dirty Little Lies (August 30, 2016)

Dirty Little Lies by Lora Leigh

Lori Foster
Dirty Little Lies (Men of Summer)
St. Martin's/August 30, 2016/ $7.99 print & digital

Dirty Little Lies is the latest entry in Lora Leigh’s Men of Summer romantic suspense series and it's a twisty mystery with a spicy romance between a saucy spitfire and the alpha male who will risk everything to save her.

Grace Maddox is a highly intelligent woman whose delicate looks and genteel appearance drive those who love her want to protect her, no matter the consequences. Townspeople have mistaken Grace’s genial behavior for naivety, as her fiery tendencies aren’t well known to those outside of her immediate family. What those who aren't close to her see is not the real Grace. She not only can truly kick butt verbally, which I love, but she’s also able to defend herself physically. One of those individuals under a misguided belief that Grace is a delicate flower is Zack Richards, the man Grace has been in love with for years. He is willing to protect her at all costs from a conspiracy that threatens her life, even fighting with her close family members to do it.

[Read more...]

Apr 13 2016 2:00pm

Mileage May Vary: Cheating in Romance

 Maddie and Wyn by Cameron Dane

There are times in stories where protagonists make questionable choices, even hurtful decisions, against those they love. Whether in a moment of pique or trapped in their own pain, these actions can add much drama and angst to a rooting couple’s story yet the reaction for some readers is a line was crossed that can’t be fixed.

Recently, I read a book by a favorite author of mine, Cameron Dane, titled Maddie and Wyn. I love her stories as she's great with showcasing her characters' emotions. She tends to write mostly m/m romances but she does occasionally write m/f and ménage novels.  What follows below are mild spoilers for that book and another by the author. Maddie and Wyn is a continuation of Dane’s Seeking Redemption series and boy did the male protagonist have things he needed to make up for regarding his past behavior with the female protagonist. I liked their story as the angst is good and the characters are nicely complex.  Upon completion, I decided to leave a review on Goodreads and imagine my surprise at seeing irate comments about the male protagonist and his ‘cheating.’

[When 3 is a No, No ...]

Jan 25 2016 10:30am

First Look: Beverly Jenkins’ Forbidden (January 26, 2016)

Beverly Jenkins
Avon / January 26, 2016 / $7.99 print, $5.99 digital

USA Today bestselling author Beverly Jenkins returns with the first book in a breathtaking new series set in the Old West

Rhine Fontaine is building the successful life he's always dreamed of—one that depends upon him passing for White. But for the first time in years, he wishes he could step out from behind the façade. The reason: Eddy Carmichael, the young woman he rescued in the desert. Outspoken, defiant, and beautiful, Eddy tempts Rhine in ways that could cost him everything . . . and the price seems worth paying.

Eddy owes her life to Rhine, but she won't risk her heart for him. As soon as she's saved enough money from her cooking, she'll leave this Nevada town and move to California. No matter how handsome he is, no matter how fiery the heat between them, Rhine will never be hers. Giving in for just one night might quench this longing. Or it might ignite an affair as reckless and irresistible as it is forbidden . . .

The latest Beverly Jenkins’ novel, 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. He’s a hero torn between the life he’s been able to have thanks to the lottery of genetics and the life he begins to crave for himself when he falls in love.

[Rhine can no longer deny himself what he craves to have ...]

Nov 10 2015 4:00pm

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Nauti Seductress (November 10, 2015)

Nauti Seductress by Lora Leigh

Lora Leigh
Nauti Seductress (Nauti Girls #3)
Berkley / November 10, 2015 / $16.00 print, $9.99 digital

#1 New York Times bestselling author Lora Leigh delivers the heat with another steamy novel featuring the Mackay sisters, following Nauti Enchantress and Nauti Temptress.

Zoey Mackay is as tough and savvy as anyone. But when an unknown assailant slips her a psychoactive drug, she descends into a literal nightmare of violence and blood. And even after she wakes, the horror haunts her, spurring her to learn how to defend herself. But her defense may not be enough for a different kind of opponent.

Enigmatic Homeland Security honcho Chatham Bromleagh Doogan is a man with power and the will to use it. When he rescues Zoey from the depths of her drug-induced delirium, he swears to find the bastards who almost destroyed her spirit and make them pay. 

But when the shadowy threat returns, will Zoey and Doogan have the strength to hold onto each other and survive the coming storm?

Lora Leigh’s latest trip to Somerset, Kentucky to visit The Nauti Girls tells the sensual love story of Zoey Mackay and Chatham Doogan III. Zoey is the plucky youngest sister of the very overprotective Dawg Mackay, who is well known to readers of this series regarding his relentless devotion in protecting his younger sisters. She’s a hellraiser with a troubling secret that has haunted her for over a year. Enter, or shall I say re-enter, Doogan who first met Zoey years ago and never forgot the beautiful young woman nor how she made him feel.

[A little mystery with great bed room chemistry ...]

Aug 18 2015 9:30am

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Secret Pleasure (August 18, 2015)

Secret Pleasure by Lora Leigh

Lora Leigh
Secret Pleasure (Bound Hearts #4)
St. Martin's Press / August 4, 2015 / $14.99 print, $9.99 digital

In Secret Pleasure by #1 New York Times bestselling author Lora Leigh, Sebastian and Shane De Loren were born to love Alyssa Hampstead. No other woman on Earth can burn for them, ignite with passion between them, the way Alyssa does. But after three sensual months of pleasure come to a crashing halt, Sebastian and Shane are left fighting their powerful family, risking it all to have Alyssa one more time... 

Alyssa has closed off her heart. A senator's daughter in the political spotlight, she'd rather be quiet and safe than feel the emotional intensity Sebastian and Shane roused within her years ago. But when the sexy cousins blaze their way back into her life, Alyssa cannot help but succumb to the heady pleasures the two men can give her. And as an unknown enemy draws near, Alyssa will need Sebastian and Shane to protect her...and satisfy every forbidden craving...

Lora Leigh is back in form with the latest addition to her The Bound Hearts series, Secret Pleasure. Fans of the series are well acquainted with the love stories in these pairings usually being a ménage of a woman and two men. Part erotic love story and part mystery, this is a suspenseful tale of a woman who found in two men the love she always craved only to have it brutally taken it from her. It is a story love stolen and reclaimed.

[Her two lovers are torn without her in their lives...]

Jun 19 2015 9:30am

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Bengal’s Quest (June 23, 2015)

Bengal's Quest by Lora Leigh

Lora Leigh
Bengal's Quest (Breeds Series)
Penguin Publishing Broup / June 23, 2015 / $20.00 print, $10.99 digital

“No one spins a story quite like Lora Leigh” (Night Owl Reviews)—and when it comes to her “highly charged and carnal” (Fresh Fiction) Breed novels, nobody does it better. Now, the #1 New York Times bestselling author tells a story of two Breeds who are united by animal desires, only to find it’s vengeance that stirs the mating heat…

He was a shadow, ever shifting and insinuating, able to blend in everywhere and anywhere. The elusive ideal conceived and created by the Genetics Council, he went by just as many names as he had identities—the last one being Gideon. 

Now calling himself Graeme, he hides in plain sight, terrifyingly close to his goal. A rogue Bengal Breed, he has loyalties to no one but himself. And he has a need for vengeance that surges hot and swift through his veins.

Graeme plans to exact an extreme and ruthless vendetta against those who wronged him—Breed and human alike. All will suffer his wrath: those who created him, those who pretended to love him, and those who betrayed him.

That includes the one at the center of it all: a seductive, enigmatic woman helpless against the man whose desire is just as desperate as his need to destroy.

And he's on her scent...

Lora Leigh is back with another engrossing addition to her Breeds Series. Bengal's Quest follows the adventures that unfolded in Stygian’s Honor, with the story of Cat and Graeme, two Breeds with a deeply entwined history of love, sacrifice, and pain.

[Another breeder novel for your list...]

May 6 2015 3:00pm

A Saga of Passion, Vengeance, Power, and Love: The Battaglia Mafia Series

Destino by Sienna MynxOne of my favorite series in recent memory is by a multicultural romance author whose books I really enjoy. After I first discovered her, I wrote a column on this site about Sienna Mynx, extoling her novels’ high entertainment value. It can be found here, Finding Your “Try” Book: Satisfying a Craving for Something New. Her Battaglia Mafia Series focuses on the sweeping saga of Giovanni Battaglia and Mirabella Ellison, but it is much more than just their story. There are many characters in these books and the series is full of past and current events seamlessly interwoven. 

The primary love story begins with the introduction of Mira Ellison, an up-and-coming fashion designer from New York visiting Italy with her best friend and business partner, Fabianna, to scout out a place to set up shop.

[And maybe have the hero scout her out?]

Jan 12 2015 2:00pm

Serious Fun: Tracy Wolff’s Play Me Series

Play Me by Tracy Wolff

This five part series is a little different from my usual romance fare. Not to say I’ve not indulged in my fair share of BDSM novels, as I have, but that subgenre is not one I actively read often. After reading this series, I think that is something that I will have to change going forward. I very much enjoyed the Play Me series. This is my first time having read a Tracy Wolff book and it certainly will not be the last time I read anything by her. 

The heroine has moxie! Aria Winston is a Vassar graduate in a thankless cocktail waitressing job in a Las Vegas casino that includes many leches and more than a little bit of sexual harassment. She is tough and the reader sees early on that she’s is the type of woman who will step-in to defend someone weaker. I loved the introduction to her character as the author puts the reader right in Aria’s head and plays out a situation that makes it easy to appreciate her.  

When we first meet him, Sebastian Caine is harried and slightly resentful. He's back in the city he grew up in, but not because he really wants to be there—he's returned to run the family casino because his father’s health problems make it impossible for him to manage the business anymore. It’s not something Sebastian's happy about but regardless of his feelings, he is dedicated to making sure the casino runs smoothly and with some class.

[But smoothly and with class is never fun...]

Oct 7 2014 9:30am

First Look: Maya Banks’s Keep Me Safe (October 7, 2014)

Keep Me Safe by Maya Banks

Maya Banks
Keep Me Safe (Slow Burn)
Avon / October 7, 2014 / $14.99 print / $7.99 digital

When Caleb Devereaux's younger sister is kidnapped, the scion of a powerful and wealthy family turns to an unlikely source for help: a beautiful and sensitive woman with a gift for finding answers others cannot. While Ramie can connect to victims and locate them by feeling their pain, her ability comes with a price. Every time she uses it, it costs her a piece of herself. Helping the infuriatingly attractive and impatient Caleb successfully find his sister nearly destroys her. Even though his sexual intensity draws her like a magnet, she needs to get as far away from him as she can.

Deeply remorseful for the pain he's caused, Caleb is determined to make things right. But just when he thinks Ramie's vanished forever, she reappears. She's in trouble and she needs his help. Now Caleb will risk everything to protect her—including his heart. . . .

Maya Banks's Keep Me Safe, the first book in Banks's romantic suspense Slow Burn series, is a captivating story of a woman discovering not just the love of a good man but finding the love within herself. It’s a novel of almost two love stories; not just the one between romantic partners, but also loving one’s self.

[Putting yourself into safe keeping?]

Aug 25 2014 3:00pm

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Ultimate Sins (August 26, 2014)

Ultimate Sins by Lora LeighLora Leigh
Ultimate Sins (Callahans)
St. Martin's Press / August 26, 2014 / $7.99 print / digital

Three men, bound by blood, will stop at nothing to protect the women who have stolen their hearts and who they have claimed as their own—no matter what the price.

Ex-Marine Crowe Callahan has only had one obsession in life: Amelia Sorenson. She is the only one who has ever gotten under his skin. However, she is also the daughter of his family’s sworn enemy: a man who has sought to destroy the Callahans for generations in order to further his own nefarious agenda.
When Amelia put herself on Crowe’s side and in Crowe’s bed, she became her father’s enemy as well. When Wayne Sorenson escapes capture, both Amelia and Crowe know it is only a matter of time before he resurfaces to exact his revenge. Now Crowe will claim Amelia in order to bait a killer and end things once and for all. But can he protect the woman he can’t seem to live without from one of the deadliest enemies he has ever known? And will he survive if he can’t?

Crowe Callahan's story is finally told in Ultimate Sins, the fourth book of Lora Leigh’s Callahan series. Readers of this series have seen glimpses of Crowe in prior novels, and so we already knew his heart belonged to Amelia Sorenson. Theirs is a sad story of love discovered early, only for them to be torn apart due to horrific external circumstances.

[That's Sinful!]

Jul 10 2014 9:30am

Women Love Bad Boys in the Scandalous Heroes Anthology

Scandalous Heroes Anthology

Scandalous Heroes is an anthology of 9 stories by authors well known by readers of multicultural romance novels. This collaboration highlights the respective strengths of the authors that their fervent followers are well familiar with when it comes to their books.

First in the anthology is Sienna Mynx’s contribution, Rallenti.  Those of who are fans of her Battaglia Series, and I am definitely one, are in for a real treat with the passionate love story of Renaldo Cracchiolo and Kyra Okeeno. They’re smitten from the very beginning but the language barrier is an initial obstacle, but soon, they don’t need words to express their growing attraction. They both are characters not looking to be tied down, Renaldo due to his job as an enforcer/ bodyguard and Kyra due to youthful ambition. Yet both find themselves craving the other more than they thought they would. Renaldo and Kyra find themselves fighting feelings, as well as an ex that just won’t accept the conclusion of the relationships plus the divergent paths carved out by their respective lives. The risks they take for they love as well as the overall banter make this one very enjoyable love story.

Aliyah Burke’s story is connected to her Megalodon series, titled Raw Exposure. Reeve Leighton and Affrica O’Shea definitely don’t meet cute. In fact, she can’t stand him upon their initial meeting, in which he pretty much insults her character. It takes Reeve, who is taken with Affrica from the beginning, some time to show her that he’s not the pompous jerk she believes him to be despite the mutual attraction. And even then, Reeve has a lot to learn as he’s spent most of his life being a thoughtless playboy. Affrica is an entertaining, independent female protagonist who tough and stubborn yet optimistic. The dance between Affrica and Reeve as they fall in love, as well as the growth of Reeve as a character, is absorbing.

[Growing boys...]

Jun 3 2014 2:30pm

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Nauti Enchantress (June 3, 2014)

Nauti Enchantress by Lora LeighLora Leigh
Nauti Enchantress
Berkley Trade / June 3, 2014 / $16.00 print, $9.99 digital

When Dawg Mackay made his four half-sisters part of his family, he vowed that he would care for and protect them with everything he had. But what happens now that the girls are all grown up? The Mackay girls are on the loose, and Somerset County will never be the same…

Lyrica Mackay has wanted tall, handsome Marine Graham Brock for as long as she can remember. Unfortunately, Graham only sees her as his friend Dawg Mackay’s “baby sister.” Or so she believes. The truth is, the fiery party girl stirs something in Graham no female ever has. But Graham, like everyone in Somerset County, knows that trouble stalks the Mackays like bears track honey, and when a Mackay runs as hot as Lyrica does, someone’s bound to get burned.

Then Graham discovers that Lyrica’s wild side is just a cover for a frightened and vulnerable woman who needs something true and genuine, something only Graham can offer. But surrendering his heart to Lyrica exposes them both to her shocking past—and a sinister secret that, once exposed, could destroy their only chance at happiness and shake the Mackay family to its core.

Continuing her Nauti Boys series world with Nauti Girls, Lora Leigh has created new protagonists to lead stories that build on characters and past romances her fans hold dear. With Nauti Enchantress, the audience is introduced to Lyrica Mackay, one of the younger half-sisters of James “Dawg” Mackay of Nauti Nights. She is a feisty and no-nonsense woman with a sharp tongue, and I was an immediate fan because of those facets of her personality. No doormat women for me, thank you, as I like a heroine who can hold her own in any situation, especially verbally. Lyrica has that in spades plus she’s quick to figure out when she’s being treated like a fragile flower and to counteract that treatment. I really enjoyed reading a female protagonist who knew her own worth and wouldn’t be coddled or over-protected by those around her.

[Sisters are doing it for themselves!...]

Feb 3 2014 3:00pm

First Look: Lora Leigh’s Rule Breaker (February 4, 2014)

Rule Breaker by Lora LeighLora Leigh
Rule Breaker (Breeds #29)
Berkley / February 4, 2014/ $25.95 print, $12.99 digital

Lion Breed and enforcer Rule Breaker has just a few rules he doesn’t break. Not for anything. Not for anyone—like never have sex with a woman outside his own breed, especially a human woman. Especially someone too helpless, too fun loving and too full of life to ever be able to protect herself, let alone help him to protect her.

If the damned animal inside him insists on a mate, then why pick her? A woman who is an easy target and who can be used as a weapon against him at any time.

But what he suspects is mating heat may not be that at all. Just his animal instincts rioting, pacing, irritated whenever he's away from her.

Okay, he can handle that.

What ensues is a fiery affair that breaks all the rules of mating heat and will eventually endanger his mate with the very rules designed to protect the Breeds—for she’s possibly been working against them…

As a fan of Lora Leigh’s Breed series, I was very excited to get my hands on a copy of her latest entry in the series, Rule Breaker. The title of the book is also the name of the male protagonist in the novel. Rule is a Lion breed enforcer who is deeply traumatized by events in his youth and his devil-may-care attitude hides an emotional wound that he’s been unable to come to peace with even many years later. Gypsy McQuade enters Rule’s life when she’s a young woman, but tragic events one night force her to grow up quickly. She’s emotionally battered and bruised, relying on a façade of rebellion to deal with a hurt that cripples her emotionally for years to come.

[Let's dive in...]

Dec 2 2013 5:30pm

Finding Love in Action-Adventure: Strike Back’s Michael Stonebridge and Kim Martinez

Michael and Kim in Strike BackStrike Back is an action-adventure show on Cinemax, and the show upped the romantic stakes in the most recent season when it introduced a new female soldier to the team. Instant sparks flew between her and another team member.

Michael Stonebridge, a soldier in a black operations team called Section 20, has been in emotional conflict for a long time. The former Special Boat Service (SBS) sergeant is a loner by nature and took some hard knocks in the show’s last season. Aside from the everyday battles that have him put his own life on the line, both his wife and his ex-mistress were killed in front of him in a short amount of time in separate events. The effect of these devastating deaths on the psyche of this already reserved man caused him to become emotionally remote aside from his interactions with his partner in the field. This was especially true regarding women. The most recent season, subtitled “Shadow Warfare,” introduced a new character to the show, Kim Martinez, a DEA special agent working covertly in the jungles of Colombia.

[Love in a time of combat...]

Aug 22 2013 2:00pm

First Look: Sugar Jamison’s Dangerous Curves Ahead (August 27, 2013)

Dangerous Curves Ahead by Sugar JamisonSugar Jamison
Dangerous Curves Ahead
St. Martin's Press / August 27, 2013 / $7.99 print, $7.59 digital

Ellis Garrett is dumping her critical boyfriend, opening a plus-size clothing store, and starting a blog—all to spread the word that fashion shouldn’t require a size-two body, and happiness should allow for the occasional cupcake. Or two. But is indulging fantasies about her sister’s long-ago ex, the still-hunky Michael Edwards, biting off more than she can chew?

Mike must be losing his detective’s touch. He doesn’t recognize Ellis when he bumps into her at Size Me Up, and he certainly doesn’t remember his ex-girlfriend’s outspoken sister being so irresistible. Her curves are indeed dangerous—and so is her wit. Could it be that Ellis is his Perfect Fit? One thing’s for sure: Mike will make it his sworn duty to find out…

Ellis Garrett, an intelligent woman who speaks her mind, is searching for the road to fulfillment. She's also a curvy woman who owns the shape of her body with aplomb. Mike Edwards is a handsome cop recently back from the mean streets of New York City, now policing the small town of Durant. Mike and Ellis have an incredibly entertaining meet-cute to start off the book. Despite a mutual attraction, Ellis considers Mike off limits and not good for her. Years ago, Mike dated her older sister Dina. Thing is, Mike doesn't remember Ellis's connection to Dina and can't quite place her in his past, but he does know he's interested in learning more about Ellis. When he finally has all the puzzle pieces of their past, it's a lovely moment that opens the door to their bumpy trip to love. I found the author's reveal and the manner in which the characters, especially Mike, handled the revelation pleasantly sweet in a way that felt authentic.

[Good surprises are always welcome...]

Apr 25 2013 9:45am

What Will be Bred Next?: Lora Leigh’s Breeds Series

Fans of Lora Leigh's The Breeds series (like me) are often reading one book's main love story, but seeing clues about a possible future mating love story. Having read all but the most recent Breed stories, I am eagerly awaiting getting to read about certain characters who have captured my interest, but haven't gotten their own books yet. Of special note are the stories of two doctors who have been in a majority of the books, Dr. Nikki Armani and Dr. Ely Morrey.

Nikki is human, a no-nonsense African-American doctor who is featured predominantly in the Wolf and Coyote breed books. There are a few scenes in a couple of series books that makes me suspect she may get her own love story with Brimstone, a Coyote Breed and younger brother to Coyote Alpha, Del-Ray Delgado. The latter's own love story is told in Coyote's Mate, one of my favorite books in the series. I'm especially hopeful in seeing a full-length novel for Nikki, not a novella in an anthology, because it will be the first time Lora Leigh has featured a African-American female lead. She's featured women of color as lead heroines before, but never an African-American woman as a mate for one of her Breed males. As a woman of color, I always appreciate seeing diversity in romance books. Plus, Brim is one of my favorite secondary male characters in this series, thanks to his memorable supporting turn in Coyote's Mate and I'm anticipating him finding his mate as much as I am in reading Nikki's story. It's a double-jackpot for me should two of my favorite secondary characters find love with one another.

[Could it happen?...]

Mar 12 2013 2:15pm

Ruh-roh, Did I Just Read That?: Grammatical Errors in Books

Red pen image by mac.rj via FlickrAs a reader of more than my fair share of self-published novels, I have come across a common trend that for the most part I can let pass: grammatical errors. That's not to say I'm okay if a book is riddled with issues, but the occasional hiccup doesn't faze me. Mistakes happen. And that is also not to say that it's only self-published novels that are full of errors. I've read more than a few from publishing houses that have goofs that range from small to glaring oversights.

I have a very good friend who is a romance junkie like me, but she is also a copyeditor.  We've had many discussions on this issue. How does one go about reacting to the big goofs, though? And what do you consider a small transgression, as opposed to outwardly flinching—or just putting the book down?

Everyone's tolerance level is different. My encounters with various errors cause different reactions, depending on the book. When it comes to glaring errors, I do find myself more forgiving of a new or relatively unknown author who has self-published a novel over an established author with a publisher and a copyeditor. Small mistakes, like an extra “s” in a word, just make me shrug. The random apostrophe is a hiccup found frequently too. I blink and move on.

[What mistakes drive you bananas?...]

Jan 25 2013 3:30pm

First Look: Beverly Jenkins’s Destiny’s Embrace (January 29, 2013)

Destiny's Embrace by Beverly JenkinsBeverly Jenkins
Destiny's Embrace
Avon / January 29, 2013 / $7.99 print & digital

Gentleman Seeks Housekeeper. Must be willing to travel.

Desperate for another life away from Philadelphia, headstrong and beautiful Mariah Cooper answers an advertisement for a housekeeper at the other end of the continent. Waiting in California is the most breathtaking—and arrogant—man she has ever met . . . and he'd like nothing better than for Mariah to go back home!

Logan Yates has run Destiny, the family ranch, since he was a boy. He doesn't need this Eastern miss his stepmother hired, though his home's chaotic state suggests otherwise. Still, he's secretly pleased that Mariah gives as good as she gets—and he must fight the urge to take her in his arms and kiss her whenever she proudly stands her ground. But when he's in danger of losing her, Logan will have to choose between pride . . . and his heart's true desire.

Mariah Cooper, the heroine of Beverly Jenkins latest historical romance, Destiny's Embrace, is a woman who has yet to truly live. She's 30 and chained to her mother's dress shop in Philadelphia. Life hasn't been easy for her; her father passed when she was a toddler, leaving her to grow up under her strict and unloving mother's thumb. Teased as a child by most of the neighborhood children for her unusual eye color and without a healthy support system at home, Mariah's optimistic approach that things will get better has served her well. That outlook on life allowed her to survive her circumstances without being browbeaten into cynicism and despair. 

[Don't worry—things are about to change...]

Dec 18 2012 10:30am

First Look: Jill Sorenson’s Aftershock (December 18, 2012)

Aftershock by Jill SorensonJill Sorenson
HQN / $7.99 print, $6.79 digital / December 18, 2012

As an emergency paramedic, Lauren Boyer is dedicated and highly capable. Until an earthquake strikes, trapping her beneath the freeway with a group of strangers—including Iraq war veteran Garrett Wright…

Handsome and take-charge Garrett aids Lauren in her rescue efforts, even as the steely look in his eyes seems to hide dark secrets. When a gang of escaped convicts goes on the attack, Garrett's bravery makes him more than a courageous bystander to Lauren. If they can save the others before time runs out, maybe, just maybe, they can explore the fire igniting between them—if the truth about who he really is doesn't pull them apart forever….

In Jill Sorenson's Aftershock, after a large earthquake strikes San Diego, California, an EMT finds herself alone when her partner is killed and chaos surrounds her. While looking for other survivors, she meets a handsome man who helps her rescue others that they come across. Together they form an alliance that soon turns into something more.

[I like the sound of that...]