Romance Roundup: Artists, Sexy Detectives, and Caring Highlanders 

This week’s Romance Roundup includes a guy who gets help investigating his father’s murder, a woman who gets a Highlander’s protection, and a nurse who gets a gig caring for a ridiculously sexy philanderer.

Surrender to the Highlander, by Lynsay Sands
Edith Drummond wakes up from a health problem to find several hunky Highlander guys taking care of her. (#lifegoals) The only one she’s drawn to, though, is Niels Buchanan. He becomes infatuated with her right away, and wants to protect her from the mysterious, hidden figure who keeps trying to poison her. Niels will need to deal with Edith’s family’s enemies if he’s going to keep her alive and embark on a beautiful, sexy life with her. Oh, and he also needs to do whatever he can to prevent her from going to a nunnery. (This is fair, as both he and Edith want to do very un-nun-like things together.) Will they manage to dodge the bad guys? And will Edith get to untie Niels’ kilt over and over and over and over (and over) again? This is the fifth book in Sands’ Scottish Highlanders series. (Available in hardcover, paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on January 30.)

Beautiful Tempest, by Johanna Lindsey
The very gentle-bred Jacqueline Malory recently had some major adventures that involved a ship and a handsome pirate, and she’s about to have some more! Jacqueline and her older brother are taken as “guests” on the ship of a very mysterious man—and that ship is sailing away from England, which could either be really good or really bad. (Seems like any time with this mysterious man would be really good!) Our gal thinks he might be a pirate, but the truth is he might actually be a nobleman who is looking to get his honor back. That said, he’s quite intrigued by the tasty morsel that is Jacqueline and doing some not-so-honorable things with her. This is the latest book in Lindsey’s passionate Malory-Anderson series. (Available in paperback on January 30.)

Beyond Danger, by Kat Martin
Texas mogul Beau Reese has a lot to deal with right now, and it pretty much started when his father knocked up a teenage girl. (Yup, that’ll definitely put a damper on one’s day.) Then said father, a former senator, is found dead in his study. Detective Cassidy Jones is already in the picture by this point, as she was hired to find out who was stalking Beau’s dad. Now that he’s dead, Cassidy and Beau will need to work very closely together in order to figure out who dunnit. The good thing is that they don’t really suspect each other. Also, Beau has the kind of body no woman would mind working closely with. Here’s hoping they solve the mystery soon, and that things only go up from there! This is the second book in Martin’s super suspenseful Texas Trilogy series. (Available in paperback and NOOK on January 30.)

Getaway, by Nora Roberts
This reprint offers two stories in one! In “Partners,” Matthew Bates and Laurel Armand are professional enemies, which is too bad, because they both wouldn’t mind getting decidedly unprofessional with each other. Then they need to investigate a murder case together, which means they are forced to work in close proximity. (Laurel, you lucky, lucky gal!) Can they manage to solve the case, ideally with Matthew shirtless at least half the time? In “Art of Deception,” artist Adam Haines goes to Kirby Fairchild’s ancestral home. He needs a quiet place to paint. (Adam, you can use all of our places! We promise to be super quiet while we watch you paint naked. The pleasure is all ours!) Being close to him is really nice, but then he starts to act a bit strange. The attraction is still there, so phew, but Kirby is very curious to see what exactly he is up to. (Available in paperback on January 30.)

Looking for a Hero, by Debbie Macomber
This reprint also offers two stories in one! In “Marriage Wanted,” divorce attorney Nash Davenport plans to stay as far away from the altar as he possibly can. (Easy to do in his line of work.) Then he meets wedding planner Savannah Charles, who has absolutely nothing against the institution of marriage. (Nash, buddy, we promise you that Savannah is an awesome and realistic woman with healthy expectations.) Can Nash drop his snarky attitude? In “My Hero,” romance writer Bailey York finds some much-needed inspiration in Parker Davidson. He has everything a heroine would want in a hero—dreamy face, charming personality, a trim, fit waist that begs to be encircled by loving arms. Will she manage to realize that Parker is the one for her, and that he’s jonesing to prove he’s real-life husband material? (Bailey, far be it from US to say “Get your nose out of that romance novel,” but would you please open your peepers just a little bit wider?!) (Available in paperback on January 30.)

Never Dare a Wicked Earl, by Renee Ann Miller
London’s most notorious Lothario Hayden Milton, the Earl of Westfield, almost had his manly bits shot off by a displeased mistress. Fortunately, her aim was not true and she shot his thigh instead. (No offense, Hayden, but you probably deserved it.) He gets a third medical assistant in Sophia Camden. (The first two just couldn’t stand him anymore because he was being a giant pain.) Sophia, though, is determined to stick around and show a guy what she’s capable of, medically. She strikes a deal with Hayden—if she can’t hack her new gig for 10 days, she’ll give in to his seductive ways. (Oh, defeat never sounded so delicious!) Sophia will obviously prove herself, because she is awesome, but will Hayden realize that he’s found a woman more precious than diamonds? (Buddy, she wants to HEAL people, not shoot them. Just stating the obvious.) This is the first book in Miller’s new Infamous Lords series. (Available in paperback and NOOK on January 30.)

What romance novels are steaming up your nightstand this week?

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