Romance Roundup: Vengeful Detectives, Adventurous Widows, and Justice-Seeking Ladies 

This week’s Romance Roundup includes a scorned wife out for some good, old-fashioned revenge, two best friends who realize that The One is much closer than they think, and a lovely lady who’s about to solve other people’s problems.

Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating, by Christina Lauren
Hazel Camille Bradford and Josh Im are two best friends whose friendship goes way back to their college days. Case in point: Hazel threw up on Josh’s shoes when they first met. (Yup, you two definitely met in college!) Personality-wise they’re both quite different—Hazel tends to embrace chaos and has a ton of pets while Josh is more mellow and likely to stick to a boring routine. Still, neither of them have had much luck on the dating scene. (Josh’s girlfriend just cheated on him, for one, so he’s feeling especially tender these days.) Hazel and Josh soon start to realize that their happily ever after might be a wee bit closer than either of them ever suspected. Will they realize that their rock-solid friendship—and Josh’s beautiful face and body—can be the foundation upon which they can build the rest of their lives together? (Available in paperback, audiobook, and NOOK.)

I Am Grace, by Diana Munoz Stewart
Gracie Parish was rescued as a child by the Parish family and then thrust into the world of the League of Warrior Women, a group of some very tough ladies who seek to right the wrongs. That’s all fine and dandy, but Gracie’s life has suffered in the relationship department due to mega-secrecy rules. Then she meets special agent Leif “Dusty” McAllister, who would make any woman want to bare her soul to him multiple times. Dusty wants to infiltrate the Parish family and learn their secrets, and he’s willing to do this at any cost—even if it means seducing Gracie and eventually breaking her heart. Then he gets to know our gal—and her family—and realizes they’re, y’know, actually trying to make the world a better place. Dusty, if you get it together ASAP and show Gracie how much you care then we’ll just let bygones be bygones! This is the second book in Stewart’s Band of Sisters series. (Available in paperback.)

Bound for Sin, by Tess LeSue
Georgiana Bee Blunt may be a refined city lady—and a widow—but she is NOT looking for some dandy to be her next husband. No, she wants a rugged manly man who knows how to use his hands and keep her family safe and help them get to California. (Georgiana, we are 100 percent on the same page as you!) She ends up maybe, kind of, sort of tricking the very manly Matt Slater into pretending to be her fiance. He doesn’t want a city woman or her many children, but then he realizes that there is far more to Georgiana than her impeccable manners. She’s actually a very tough cookie, and might make a better frontierswoman than he ever would have suspected. (This is true, Matt! It’s true!) Here’s hoping that Georgiana finds the safety for her family that she’s looking for, and that she and Matt have many a romp underneath a starlit Western sky! This is the second book in LeSue’s Frontiers of the Heart series. (Available in paperback and NOOK.)

The Grand Sophy, by Georgette Heyer
This reprint features our heroine, Sophy, who is really good at fixing people’s problems. She’s taken in by her aunt, the very fancy Lady Ombersley, and soon becomes embroiled in her aunt’s family’s drama. There’s Cecelia, who is in love with a poet—and let’s just say her high society family does NOT approve. Then there’s Charles, who is a bit of a tyrant and has a weird fiancee to boot. (Buddy, think long and hard before you shackle yourself to that particular lady!) There are also some young children who could really use some F-U-N. Oh, and Lady Ombersley’s husband is, like, useless in all of this. Sophy certainly has her work cut out for her, so here’s hoping she also manages to have some fun in her new home and be appreciated for all of her hard work. Oh, and that Charles rethinks that bizarre relationship of his and realizes there could be a far more positive presence in his life! (Available in paperback.)

Intercepted, by Alexa Martin
Marlee Harper has been dating her NFL-playing boyfriend for the past 10 years, and unfortunately our gal has just found out that said NFL-playing boyfriend has been having his cake and eating it too for a very long time. (Marlee, it might take a lot of us, but we’ll tackle him to the ground for you!) She decides to swear off of athletes forever, even if they do have magnificent bodies. Then the team’s new quarterback Gavin Pope comes back into her life. Marlee thought he was just a fling back in the day, never to be seen again, but he’s back and looking yummier than ever! Oh, and he’s also a nice guy who wants to prove to Marlee that he’s nothing like her lying, cheating, disgusting ex-boyfriend. (That’s right, Gavin! You show her! Multiple times!) They’ll have to deal with some sports-related politics, though, if they’re going to have their happy ending. Hang in there, you two! This is the first book in Martin’s Playbook series. (Available in paperback and NOOK.)

Mistress for Hire, by Niobia Bryant
Once upon a time Jessa Bell cheated with a friend’s husband, but she has long since turned it all around and started an agency that helps wives catch their filthy rich philandering husbands in the act. Her employees are young ladies who work to catch those guys in the act, and if they get a taste of the good life while working, well, then that’s all fine and dandy. Jessa also marries a private detective named Hammer, which makes her feel happy and nice and normal. Then she catches him sleeping with one of her employees. This, plus a deadly enemy, is just a little too much for our gal. She decides to go on a mission of revenge and make anyone who gets in her way suffer to the extreme. (Not gonna lie, Jessa—we’re kind of impressed!) Will she survive all of this trouble and finally get some peace and quiet? (Jessa, when it’s all over, we are SO booking you a spa day!) This is the fifth book in Bryant’s Mistress series. (Available in paperback and NOOK on September 25.)

What romance novels are you excited about this week?

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