<i>Nailed It</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Nailed It: Exclusive Excerpt Cindi Madsen "It's much easier to fix up a house than a broken heart..." <i>The Right Kind of Rogue</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Right Kind of Rogue: Exclusive Excerpt Valerie Bowman "A surprise encounter on a deep, dark night could be enough to spark..." <i>The Scandalous Flirt</i>: Exclusive Excerpt The Scandalous Flirt: Exclusive Excerpt Olivia Drake "Could it be that Lucas has been in love with Rory all along..." <i>Trust In Me</i>: Exclusive Excerpt Trust In Me: Exclusive Excerpt Jessica Linden "She’ll need to trust Marco to protect her…"
From The Blog
October 20, 2017
In Defense of the Flawed Heroine
Darlene Marshall
October 20, 2017
Gena Showalter Reveals the Next Two Couples in Lords of the Underworld Series
Team H & H
October 19, 2017
Set Sail with Danelle Harmon’s Heir to the Sea
Wendy the Super Librarian
October 19, 2017
How to Review Romance for the Inexperienced (and Indifferent) Critic
Robin Lovett
October 18, 2017
Life Is a Cosmic Cabaret
Veronica Scott Author
Showing posts by: Robin Lovett click to see Robin Lovett's profile
Thu
Oct 19 2017 9:30am

A How-to Guide for Reviewing Romance for the Inexperienced (and Indifferent) Critic

Source: Shutterstock

6 Aspects of Romance You Should Definitely Bring Up When You Review the Genre

Being a critic isn’t an easy job. Especially when it comes to reviewing romance.

It’s such a complex genre with all those predictable endings that are so feel-good. I mean, what’s to critique in that? And all that intricate conflict, carefully crafted plot development, and detailed characterization can be very overwhelming to the inexperienced critic.

I’m here to help you.

What’s that? Oh, you’re actually very experienced and well-read individual? I see, just not with romance. Forgive me for assuming you’re a beginner given the inaccuracies that slip in an occasional (or every) sentence of your review.

I suppose it is forgivable since romance is out of the norm of what a book critic, like yourself, usually reads. When serious things like death, violence, introspection, and assault are your standard, knowing what to do with something so touchy-feely as romance is very challenging.

Here’s a best practices guide to give you a little assistance on reviewing the new-to-you genre you just started reading last week and you’re now a self-proclaimed avid fan of.

[Read more...]

Sun
Sep 24 2017 11:00am

9 Essential Game of Thrones Scenes for Jon/Daenerys Shippers

Between Daenerys and Jon—Who’s really in charge?

It only took seven seasons, but Jon and Daenerys are finally together!

The two most lovable players in Game of Thrones had lots of shared screen time this season. It was exploding with sexual chemistry—um, I mean heavy eye-gazing.

via GIPHY

They sure didn’t touch much. Until the last episode—phew!

It was a massive powerplay in every scene, and the big question the whole way was, who comes out on top?

The Meet-Cute

Their duel for dominance began in Daenerys throne room at Dragonstone. Daenerys, the Dragon Queen, wants Jon, the professed King of the North, to “bend the knee.” (I can’t blame her. I wouldn’t mind seeing him on his knees either.) Jon, however, is conspicuously quiet.

It takes him too long to pull himself together and speak up.

[Read more...]

Mon
Sep 11 2017 12:00pm

Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures... Even in Romance

Keeper by Robin Lovett

Today we're thrilled to welcome Robin Lovett (Keeper) to Heroes and Heartbreakers. Robin wears two hats on H&H—one as one of our bloggers and one as an author. Today Robin is wearing her author hat and discussing that even in romance, where all the endings are happy, that desperate times still call for desperate measures. Thanks, Robin!

The lengths we want a character to go for love knows no bounds. When someone they love is threatened, we want to see them do whatever they can to protect them.

In real life, we may have the urge to do violence when a loved one is hurt. Or protect someone from harm in a way that is impossible for us. It’s not civil to go beat up a bully. It’s illegal to seek justice on someone the law doesn’t catch. But in a romance fictional world, all characters good and evil get their due.

Like Mr. Darcy in Pride and Prejudice, doing whatever he can with his money, his time and his reputation to make Wickham marry Lizzy’s sister after he runs away with Lydia. Mr. Darcy believed it was his wrong for not exposing Wickham to the world as the miscreant he was. But Mr. Darcy fully admits—he did it all purely for love of Lizzy.

At the end of the first Outlander book by Diana Gabaldon, though it’s tragic and horrible, Jamie Fraser does the unthinkable to save his wife, Claire. He gives himself up to Captain Randall. Sometimes the sacrifices characters make for the ones they love are painful to witness. The extremes Claire goes to to save him back is no small feat either.

[Read more...]

Wed
Jul 12 2017 12:00pm

What Will Be Sansa Stark’s Greatest Revenge? We’re Hoping It Will Be a Happy Ending!

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If anyone deserves an epic romance on Game of Thrones, it's Sansa Stark...

It's addictive to speculate about what will happen next on Game of Thrones. That's the appeal. We all have ideas about what we think will happen. It's endless entertainment to talk about it.

What makes it more fun, we rarely guess right. The show has taught us one thing: expect the unexpected.

I've been fantasizing about what I'd like to happen for Sansa Stark. 
After being traumatized myself by the abuse she suffered at the hands of Ramsay in Season 5, my way of coping was to figure out what I'd like to happen next for Sansa. Though I have no delusions that what I want will actually happen. 

That she orchestrates Ramsey’s death at the end of Season 6 was fabulous. His death—being eaten by his own dogs—was a great revenge for Sansa. Many believe it was the best she could ask for. And I think the creators intended it that way. But I disagree. 

She deserves so much more.

[Read more...]

Fri
Jul 7 2017 12:01pm
Excerpt

Robin Lovett Excerpt: Deceiver

Robin Lovett

Deceiver by Robin Lovett

The plan was to ruin a man’s life. Not seduce the man’s daughter. But sometimes, the unlikeliest of people becomes the target. And sometimes revenge can make a man vulnerable in ways he didn’t know existed…

I’m bored. Tired of my meaningless life. The garden parties, the white sundresses, and politely saying “no” to the sliver of cake—it’s the life my mother and father wanted for me, worked tirelessly for me to have. And the monotony makes me reckless.

But when I go to Blake Vandershall’s party, his dark, menacing eyes and his hard, unyielding stare make me want things that have never been offered to me before. He’s the type who would ravish you in your father’s law office. The kind who would lie without blinking an eye in order to get what he wants.

And the repressed bad girl in me wants to give him what he needs.

Get a sneak peek at Robin Lovett's Deceiver (available July 11, 2017) with an exclusive excerpt of a selected scene.

Chapter One

Should I do it . . .

My finger hovers over the button that will rain chaos over everything. It will ruin the hors d’oeuvres, the women’s couture, the men’s linen suits. But most importantly, it will ruin his party.

He’s been staring at me all night, those coal dark eyes saturated with ambition and disturbingly wicked ideas. They follow me around his gardens like I’m some model on display for his visual pleasure.

It pisses me off. Enough to want to make him sorry for it. Enough to make sure he knows staring at me is not okay. And most important, enough to ensure this party will end and I can get out of here.

His sprinkler system is my new partner in crime.

[Read the full Deceiver excerpt...]

Fri
Jun 16 2017 9:30am

Is It Hate or Is It Love? The Closeness of Fear and Desire

Stranger by Robin Lovett

Today we're thrilled to welcome Robin Lovett (Stranger) to Heroes and Heartbreakers. Robin writes dark, gritty romance, and knows a thing or two about about the line between love and hate, fear and desire. Today she's here to talk about that fine line. Thanks, Robin. 

That enemies to lovers trope that so many of us love…

Why does that work so well?

They say opposite personalities attract, but I say opposite emotions attract too. The passion that comes out of a relationship that begins with mutual dislike can turn explosive.

The “I hate you. This changes nothing,” declared during a love scene creates the ultimate experience of the forbidden, which gets a lot of us going and turning pages like mad. I can’t get enough of the high stakes game wondering, when will this shouting match turn into a hot-and-heavy?

But why? From intense hatred comes life changing love? It doesn’t make sense—at first sight (pun intended).

But it makes a hell of a lot of sense, if you really think about it.

[Read more...]

Wed
Jun 14 2017 1:30pm

Romance in the Age of the Trigger Warning: Do Readers Need to be Warned?

Source: Shutterstock

The presence of Trigger Warnings has been fast growing. We see them more and more. Sometimes clear, sometimes vague, but always—in my opinion—helpful.

I wish there were more of them.         

But not everyone feels the way I do. Some complain they’re annoying, and they’re spoilers. It’s true. They do let the reader know what to expect. But for those of us who need trigger warnings, it sometimes makes it possible for us to read at all.

Many gravitate toward romance because it’s a safe space. We know the happily-ever-after will come. That love will triumph over evil. That no matter how bad it gets, it will all be okay. They provide a security no other genre can give us. In our real world, where HEA is not guaranteed in any part of our lives, romance novels are nothing short of priceless.

For the most part, our heroines and heroes won’t be harmed, assaulted or abused between the covers of the books. Usually, there won’t be any graphic violence or offensive slurs. These days, we expect consent in all romantic situations, unless of course it’s a character’s particular kink. In which case, a warning to the reader that this will be the case is polite.

I need my trigger warnings. I depend on them.

[Read more...]

Tue
Jun 13 2017 12:00pm
Excerpt

Dark Romance Sampler from Robin Lovett, May Bridges & Sherilee Gray

Robin Lovett, May Bridges and Sherilee Gray

They're dark and brooding, they're sinful, they're lawless. If dark romance is your cup of tea, then these authors are ones you won't want to miss. Come on over to the dark side and get exclusive sneak peeks from Robin Lovett's Stanger (June 13, 2017), May Bridges' Killing June (July 4, 2017); and Sherilee Gray's Shattered King (June 27, 2017) with these three excerpts!

[Read the excerpts...]

Tue
Jun 6 2017 9:30am

Every J.R. Ward Fan Should Be Reading Ruby Dixon

Ice Planet Barbarians by Ruby Dixon

Blue aliens, you say?

My dear friend, romance reader and writer, Alexis Daria, sends me a screen shot of text from her Kindle, with mad giggly faces all around it: Do you know what kinds of private parts blue aliens have?

I must admit I was amused and intrigued.

I’ve been on a contemporary binge for a while now. Years ago, I was hard into paranormal, but I drifted toward new adult then deep into erotic rom, but now…

This blue alien thing—I was hearing it from more and more people—I had to try it.

So I did, and it’s been a blast from the past. I haven’t fallen for a series this hard since first reading J.R. Ward’s Dark Lover.

It’s been like diving into a blue team version of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. Replace the lessers with little green men, replace the fangs with horns. And yes—remember that talk about private parts?—give the males a spur. Curious yet?

Move the setting from the decadent mansion in Caldwell, NY to a Neolithic cave in an arctic climate, and welcome to Ice Planet Barbarians by Ruby Dixon. (Amazon)

[Read more...]