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  • Rachel Paxton 4:00 pm on 2018/07/05 Permalink
    Tags: angels' blood, betsy taylor, danielle monsch, darynda jones, dead witch walking, diana rowland, first grave on the right, , , , , magic bites, majorie m. liu, maryjanice davidson, moon called, nalini singh, , , , stone guardian, tiger eye, vampires and ghosties, white hot kiss, white trash zombie   

    4 Reasons to Give Paranormal Romance a Try if You Haven’t Already 

    My love affair with paranormal romance began like most people’s—with Twilight. It was my first introduction to the world of vampires and werewolves, and while I may have grown beyond young adult, I haven’t grown beyond my love for paranormal. And I want to share my love for the genre with everyone, so I’ve created this list of reasons to help you sink your fangs into the world of paranormal romance.

    1. Nothing is off limits. We’ve all heard tales of vampires and werewolves, but paranormal romance doesn’t end with those magical creatures. In fact, they’re only the beginning. When you’re writing in a world of magic and wonder, any “monster,” creature, and lore is on the table. For an unexpected paranormal romance, check out Tiger Eye, by Marjorie M. Liu. It features a tiger-shifter named Hari, who’s trapped inside a riddle box and becomes bound to the “master” who opens it. Or, check out Danielle Monsch’s Stone Guardian, which follows human Larissa as she’s saved by a gargoyle named Terak. It also features basically all the magical creatures, including wizards, dragons, and necromancers. And if you’re interested in a YA romance featuring gargoyles, check out White Hot Kiss, by Jennifer L. Armentrout.

    2. No damsels in distress here. Paranormal romance has a reputation for being all about strong men who control women. Not to say that there aren’t any books like that—there are. But paranormal romance also has some of the most kick-butt women to ever encounter the page, fighting creatures of the night and dealing with all sorts of paranormal problems. One of my favorite heroines is Kate Daniels from Ilona Andrews’ Kate Daniels series. The first story (Magic Bites) introduces us to the titular character, a mercenary who makes her living cleaning up magical messes. When her guardian is murdered, she goes on a quest for justice, landing her in all sorts of trouble. Luckily, she can handle it. For another amazing heroine, check out Kim Harrison’s Hollows series, starting with Dead Witch Walking.

    3. It doesn’t take itself too seriously. Now I’m not saying there aren’t big stakes in paranormal romance. Often, the heroes and heroines are in life-threatening situations. And sometimes, there’s little lightheartedness going around. But, for whatever reason, some of the funniest heroines I’ve encountered have been in paranormal romance. There’s Charley Davidson, a part-time private investigator and full-time Grim Reaper, from Darynda Jones’ Charley Davidson series (start with First Grave on the Right). There’s Angel Crawford, a high-school dropout turned zombie, from Diana Rowland’s White Trash Zombie series. And finally, there’s Betsy Taylor from MaryJanice Davidson’s Betsy Taylor series—accurately described as a cross between Sex and the City and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

    4. Monsters are people too. One thing I love about fantasy and paranormal is that it grants you another lens through which to examine the real world. Fantasy offers us an escape from reality, while still allowing us to explore emotions and situations we face every day. After all, romance heroes and heroines are still people who love, get hurt, and face pain—even if they also shapeshift. Or suck blood. For a heroine who’s just trying to live her life without magical interference, check out Moon Called, by Patricia Briggs. It follows Mercy Thompson, a Volkswagon mechanic and magical being, who struggles to find her place in the world. Another book that shows a heroine battling real-world emotions (such as pressure and fear of failure) is Angels’ Blood, by Nalini Singh. It follows vampire hunter Elena, as she’s given the impossible task of hunting down an archangel gone bad.

    What do you love about paranormal romance?

    The post 4 Reasons to Give Paranormal Romance a Try if You Haven’t Already appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

     
  • Cristina Merrill 4:00 pm on 2017/12/27 Permalink
    Tags: , elle wright, it's always been you, nalini singh, , , , , , the pretender, when we meet   

    Romance Roundup: Tennis Players, Lady Sheriffs, and Art Thieves 

    This week’s Romance Roundup includes two longtime friends who end up married in Las Vegas, a lady fighting to save her farm, and very sexy professional tennis players.

    A Million Little Things, by Susan Mallery
    Zoe Saldivar needs to meet some new people, pronto. She just broke up with her long-term boyfriend, and her best friend, Jen, is understandably preoccupied with baby-related matters, so no late-night margarita outings for the foreseeable future. (Zoe, just to be clear, YOU can still imbibe.) Things pick up, though, when Zoe befriends Jen’s widowed mom and falls in love with Jen’s brother. Oh, and Zoe’s dad falls for Jen’s mom, so you know there are plenty of double-date opportunities on the horizon. Gotta love it when family and friends get along! This is the third book in Mallery’s very endearing Mischief Bay series. (Available in paperback on December 26.)

    It’s Always Been You, by Elle Wright
    Dr. Lovely “Love” Washington has just had the night of her life. She slept with her best friend, the very sexy Dr. Drake Jackson, who is the kind of man no woman would mind being friends—or friendly—with. Oh, and they’ve just woken up in a Las Vegas hotel with wedding rings on their fingers. (Love, your name should really be Lucky!) Drake soon realizes that being married to Love can actually be a really, really good thing. His love is going to be put to the test though, because our gal has an extremely annoying ex-boyfriend who won’t go away, for one, and she and Drake need to go to a family reunion that just might be a tad stressful. (Buddy, you handle the reunion and we’ll handle the ex-boyfriend!) Love and Drake, we’ve got faith that you’ll both make the best out of this beautiful situation! This is the first book in Wright’s Jacksons of Ann Arbor series. (Available in paperback and NOOK.)

    The Pretender, by HelenKay Dimon
    Harrison Tate used to be a thief, but now he’s gone mostly good and works to recover stolen art. We say “mostly” because he still has a side gig that involves stealing back artifacts that have been taken by nefarious means—and doing it in a way that isn’t 100 percent kosher. (We don’t judge you at all, Harrison! Everyone needs a side gig that’ll pay for the dog walker!) An assignment leads him to Gabrielle Wright, whose sister has just been murdered. Gabrielle is also estranged from her family, which surely doesn’t help matters that much, either. (Gabrielle, we’ll take you out for a fun girls’ night out when everything settles down!) Gabrielle and Harrison are immediately attracted to each other, and realize that their feelings might be much deeper than either of them expected. Here’s hoping they turn to each other—and stay there—during these dark days and all the days ahead! (Available in paperback and NOOK on December 26.)

    When You Love a Scotsman, by Hannah Howell
    Life is not easy for our heroine, Abigail Jenson. She’s a woman alone in the Wild West, for one, and she is doing everything she can to keep her small Missouri farm afloat. (We believe in you, Abigail! And we’ll happily grab our pitchforks and defend you and your farm any day of the week!) Then some bottom-feeding miscreants set her cabin on fire, and she’s forced to accept help from a very dashing Scottish-born officer. (We’re all sharpening our pitchforks, Abigail! You just stay focused now on this cutie.) The officer in question, Matthew MacEnroy, is still fairly new to America. The Scottish hunk soon falls quite hard for this lovely lady, who is now under his care. Can these two wonderful, hardworking people manage to carve out a new life together? This is the second book in Howell’s swoon-worthy Seven Brides/Seven Scotsmen series. (Available in paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on December 26.)

    Silver Silence, by Nalini Singh
    Silver Mercant has some major responsibilities as the Trinity Accord handles some unification issues. Silver is the director of this major emergency response-thingie, for one, so she really has no time to dilly-dally. (Silver, we’d all like to apply to be your personal assistant! You’ll never go a day without fresh dry cleaning!) Then she crosses paths with Valentin Nikolaev, and she realizes that everyone needs to dilly-dally once in a while. (It’s very healthy of you to realize this, Silver!) She’s not supposed to let her emotions get the better of her, but Valentin can elicit a passionate response from a plastic bag. When someone tries to poison Silver, he gets all “Oh, hell, no!” and steps up his game to keep her safe. Can they dodge the bad guys and build a beautiful life together? This is the first book in Singh’s Psy-Changeling Trinity series, which is a spinoff of her Psy-Changeling series. So much fun and romance and action! (Available in paperback on December 26.)

    When We Meet, by Nora Roberts
    This reprint features two stories in one! In “The Law is a Lady,” film director Phillip Kincaid is arrested for speeding, but, being an exceptionally handsome optimist, he realizes the small town in New Mexico where he got caught would be a great location to shoot a film. Sheriff Tory Ashton has no time for a charmer like Phillip. (Are you sure, Tory?) She soon realizes, though, that she’d like to use her handcuffs on him in more ways than one. In “Opposites Attract,” professional tennis players Asher Wolfe and Ty Starbuck have a bit of a history together, and they’re now reunited after a few years apart. Our gal Asher is still in love with Ty, and he is certainly feeling feelings for her, but she’s got a secret up her sleeve, and it’s not just her backhand technique. Will Ty still stick by her side when all is revealed? And will Asher provide us with her best tips for toned arms? (Available in paperback on December 26.)

    The post Romance Roundup: Tennis Players, Lady Sheriffs, and Art Thieves appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

     
  • Tara Sonin 6:00 pm on 2017/12/12 Permalink
    Tags: , a christmas promise, a cold day for murder, a highlander christmas, a kiss for midwinter, a rose in winter, a seduction at christmas, a winter scandal, becca fitzpatrick, bed of roses, biting cold, black ice, boy snow bird, bring me home for christmas, , , , , chloe niell, , christmas angel, Cold Mountain, , , dana stabenow, dark celebration, deep kiss of winter, , , , elizabeth chadwick, , , , gaelen foley, , Get a Clue, girls made of snow and glass, grace burrows, , ice, jane villaneuva, , , , , john green maureen johnson, , , , la casey, lady sophie’s christmas wish, lauren myracle, let it snow, , , lord of ice, , , marissa meyer, , , , melissa bashardoust, mercedes lackey, nalini singh, never love a highlander, , northern lights, once upon a winter’s eve, , , , shadows and lace, , , snow falling, , susan wigs, , , , the bite before christmas, the scandal before christmas, the snow queen, , the winter crown, , the winter sea, , winter fire, winter garden, , winter stroll   

    50 Delightful Winter Romances 

    It’s the most wonderful time of the year…but with bare trees and freezing temperatures, it can also be pretty bleak. That’s why we’ve got fifty winter romances on tap; so you can spend the long nights with couples falling in love instead of shivering under the covers.

    Devil in Winter, by Lisa Kleypas
    What’s the best way to get away from a conniving family? Marry a notoriously terrible man, of course. But there’s a catch: when she demands that her rake of a husband stay celibate for six months, Evangeline finds his icy exterior thawing enough to let her into his heart.

    Deep Kiss of Winter, by Kresley Cole
    An ice fey, Danii possesses a dangerous ability to cause excruciating pain to anyone not of her kind who touches her skin. But Murdoch, a vampire, is not one to be dissuaded by the cold…especially when his passion for her burns hotter than any flame.

    Once Upon a Winter’s Eve, by Tessa Dare
    This novella stars Violet Winterbottom, who is swept away by a mysterious stranger at the Spindle Cove Christmas Ball, when a man stumbles into the ballroom and collapses. The mysteries surrounding him are numerous, but none more than the heat between them…which Violet will lose forever if she does not figure out who he is, and what he wants, before the sun rises.

    A Kiss For Midwinter, by Courtney Milan
    Christmas is Lydia’s favorite time of year, but even holiday cheer isn’t enough to erase the scourge of an event that could have ruined her reputation. Thankfully, only one other person knows about it: Dr. Jonas Grantham. She would rather forget he existed, but Jonas has other plans: he’s in love with Lydia, and intends to turn all her winters warm for as long as they live.

    A Rose in Winter, by Kathleen E. Woodiwiss
    Erienne Fleming’s beauty is legendary in her village of Mawbry. Everyone wants to marry her, but unfortunately, Erienne does not have a choice due to her father’s debt. So when she is married off to the mysterious Lord Saxton, known for his terrible moods and disfigurement from a fire years before—Erienne knows happiness will elude her forever. That is, until she learns his true heart, and finds herself falling for a man she once thought of as a beast. It is at this inopportune moment that a childhood love tempts her away, and Erienne must make a choice.

    The Winter Sea, by Susanna Kearsley
    Carrie is an ambitious author who has her sights set on turning the story of a Jacobite invasion in 1708 into a successful novel. Especially since one of her ancestors lived the event. But Carrie soon finds herself lost in the snowstorm of truth and fiction, where they begin to merge.

    A Christmas Promise, by Mary Balogh
    Ellie and Randolph are meant to be: their perfect match and impending wedding is the perfect balance of wealth and title, and they are destined for a perfect union. Except that Ellie does not love him…and all she wants for Christmas is to marry a man she loves.

    Girls Made of Snow and Glass, by Melissa Bashardoust
    Mina’s life is upended when it is revealed her heart is not human—it is made of glass, and does not beat. Her magical father performed the devastating transformation with a terrible consequence: a glass heart cannot know love. But Mina is determined to know love, and will seduce a king in order to do so…

    Lord of Ice, by Gaelen Foley
    Damien lives alone, haunted by the trauma of war. But when he is named the guardian of a young ward, he is tempted both to re-enter society. Though he may have fallen prey to the chill of war, learning to love again will warm his heart.

    Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish, by Grace Burrows
    Sophie does not treasure her place in society the same way her family does—which is why a few nights alone in an empty mansion sounds like her Christmas wish has come true. But when a snowstorm, an abandoned child, and a brokenhearted man kind enough to offer assistance all conspire to disrupt her plans, she finds herself wishing for something new.

    A Winter Scandal, by Candace Camp
    Thea Bainbridge has always played by the rules of her society—and so when an infant is discovered in her church manger, she knows a man who does not abide them is to blame: Gabriel, the Lord Morecombe. But Gabriel is not afraid of scandal…instead, he finds himself drawn in both by the mystery of the child’s true parentage, and Thea’s determined spirit.

    Never Love a Highlander, by Maya Banks
    Caelen made a terrible mistake, but now he’s making things right: by marrying the bride his older brother jilted to heal the ongoing feud between two Highland clans. Rionna, his bride, may be interested in preserving the peace, but she’s vowed never to give her heart away—especially not to someone cold and guarded like him. But when a mutual enemy threatens their family, Rionna and Caelen unite to defeat it…and in the process, fall in (very, very steamy) love.

    Christmas Angel, by Jo Beverley
    Leander knows women love him. That’s why he wants a convenient marriage, one that will allow him to live life as he chooses—on his terms, and in anyone else’s bed. So when Judith Rossiter, the widow of the late poet Sebastian, decides to marry him to provide for her children, the arrangement couldn’t be more perfect. But she has secrets, and Leander finds himself wanting to uncover them, like plundering a virgin snow…

    The Scandal Before Christmas, by Elizabeth Essex
    Holiday novellas are short, sweet, and have just enough steam to keep you warm in winter. Ian Worth, a soldier, needs to marry before Christmas—days away from his next deployment to sea. So when he decides to marry Anne Lesley, a spinster with no other prospects (so she won’t ask questions), he believes all is well. But a snowstorm means they are trapped together, along with their secrets, and the desire growing between them…

    Bed of Roses, by Nora Roberts
    Nothing more romantic than a winter wedding! Wedding florist Emma has it all: her dream job, dream friends, and a dream love life. What she doesn’t have? One great love…and that’s where Jack comes in. But love isn’t always a bed of roses, even for those in the business of making it beautiful.

    All I Want for Christmas is a Vampire, by Kerrelyn Sparks
    This book combines my favorite things: holiday cheer, and vampires. Toni is on a mission to do the impossible: prove that vampires exist, so she can spring her BFF from a mental institution, where she’s doing a terrible job of convincing people she was attacked by them. So she decides to be a bodyguard for the Undead…never intending to fall in love with Ian, a five-hundred-year old vampire.

    Bring Me Home for Christmas, by Robyn Carr
    Denny broke Becca’s heart three years ago…and then he went off to war. By Christmas this year, she is going to rid her heart of the memories of him by crashing her brother’s hunting trip in search of some distraction (and maybe a tempting guy or two.) But of course, she finds Denny, and the snowstorm between them is even more powerful than the one raging outside.

    A Highlander Christmas, by Janet Chapman
    Camry was a NASA scientist…so why on earth did she leave her job to be a small-town dog-sitter? Only she knows, and she’s determined to keep it that way, by avoiding her family for the holidays. But when her rival, Luke, shows up to bring her home, a battle of the wills erupts between them.

    The Winter King, by C.L. Wilson
    We have reached the fantasy portion of this roundup! This gorgeous romance stars Wynter, a man determined to seek vengeance on a foreign kingdom’s King by marrying his daughter. Khamsin is afraid of marrying the notorious Wintercraig king…but nothing could be worse than her father’s abandonment. And so what starts as an act of revenge soon becomes an act of love—even as evil rises up around them, and a dark magic must be defeated.

    Shield of Winter, by Nalini Singh
    Vasic is a soldier with too much blood on his hands to fathom. Living on the fringes of society, he is drawn back into action to protect people against a deadly virus. Especially Ivy, who is determined to fight back against the contagion—and who gives Vasic something else he is afraid to lose.

    Winter Fire, by Elizabeth Lowell
    Sarah Kennedy needs no one to survive. Not after everything she’s been through. But against the backdrop of the Civil War, she finds herself caring for a wounded Civil War soldier, haunted by a past of his own.

    Dark Celebration, by Christine Feehan
    The Carpathian series continues with this Christmas tale starring Mikhail, the Prince of his kind, who is determined to protect them from extinction. But when his enemies target his wife and daughter, he is forced to turn to tactics unthinkable to him before in order to keep them safe.

    Chasing Christmas Eve, by Jill Shalvis
    It’s never too early for holiday cheer…but Colbie Albright is feeling anything but cheery when she show up in the Bay Area after escaping New York and her fame as a renowned YA author. And when she ends up literally underwater and is saved by Spencer Baldwin, she wants what she knows she shouldn’t have…and come Christmas, she’ll have to go back to her old life.

    Merry and Bright, by Debbie Macomber
    Debbie Macomber returns with a Christmas story just hot enough to lift your spirits as the weather grows colder. She tells the story of Merry Smith, who is living the life she wants—family, career, and holiday cheer. But her mother decides to meddle and give her the gift she won’t give herself: a social life, with prospective matches galore! And while what Merry finds in the online dating world makes her happy indeed, will the fantasy come crashing down when reality sets in?

    A Seduction at Christmas, by Cathy Maxwell
    Fiona has learned the hard way what lengths she’ll sink to in order to save herself…even if it means taking down a rake of a Duke. Posing as his ward, Fiona does her best to get the better of a man who has spent his life distrusting women…but in this steamy tale, even he cannot help but fall prey to her charms.

    Let it Snow, by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle
    Another winter-themed anthology with beautiful YA stories about a Christmas Eve snowstorm that turns the lives of three teens into a magical night of love.

    Wintersong, by S. Jae-Jones
    The Goblin King steals Liesl’s sister, drawing her into the strange and magical world of the Underground in order to save her. This YA novel is rife with gorgeous descriptions, forbidden romance, and the devastation surrounding what happens when a girl is torn between family and fate.

    Ice, by Linda Howard
    I love a good military thriller…especially one starring a guy good enough to make sure his dad’s neighbor is safe during an ice storm. Except Gabriel is not that guy; he doesn’t even LIKE Lolly, the neighbor he finds himself having to rescue from masked strangers in her window. United against a mysterious enemy, determined to survive the storm, Gabriel and Lolly make their way to safety, and to steamy romance.

    Get a Clue, by Jill Shalvis
    Breanne has been jilted, so getting snowed in on the honeymoon she should have had sounds like exactly what would happen to her. But when she discovers her room—the last room in the lodge—is already occupied by a very cute, very cynical cop, they strike a bargain to share the room.

    Northern Lights, by Nora Roberts
    Nate Burke got burned watching his police partner die, and so he chooses to start over in Alaska, prepared to endure the cold weather. In a town called Lunacy, what else could he expect but to have an affair with a pilot named Meg…while stalking a murderer on the loose that only he can track down.

    The Bite Before Christmas, by Lynsay Sands and Jeaniene Frost
    This book has multiple stories for the price of one! An anthology focused on Yuletide romance starring immortals from both of these authors’ bestselling series, you’re in for a bloody sexy read.

    Frozen, by L.A. Casey
    Neala and Darcy have a love-hate relationship for the ages. But when they both wind up at the toy store determined to buy the last toy in stock, their battle of wills…and sexual tension…burns brighter than a Christmas tree.

    Shadows and Lace, by Teresa Medeiros
    Rowena has been gambled into service for a mysterious—and potentially murderous—knight. Little does she know that her situation has been his ploy all along in a quest for vengeance. This pawn does not expect to love her captor, and the knight never expected to desire his pawn…

    Cold Mountain, by Charles Frazier
    One of the most beautiful and devastating historical novels in modern times, Cold Mountain tells the story of a couple torn apart by the Civil War. Inman, a Confederate soldier, is determined to trek across the mountains to return home to Ada, the woman he loves. But home is not the same place it was when he left it, and danger abounds as Ada discovers the lengths she will go to in order to survive without him.

    Winter Stroll, by Elin Hilderbrand
    The Quinn family returns in this novel full of holiday hope and laughter…that is, until a series of unexpected guests show up at the Winter Street Inn and throw a few wrenches in the romances everyone thought were going so well.

    Winter Garden, by Kristin Hannah
    Russia is known as a cold place, especially during World War II. In this romance that spans time and space between 1941 and 2000, the story of a mother’s determination to survive a war transforms her relationship with her estranged daughters.

    Shiver, by Maggie Stiefvater
    This paranormal YA novel has serious swoons! The heartbreaking love story of Grace—a girl fascinated by the wolves who live in her backyard, and Sam, a human boy cursed to change with the cold—is dark, romantic, and perfect for chilly nights.

    Winter, by Marissa Meyer
    This sci-fi epic tells the story of a Princess named Winter who dares to fall in love with a palace guard in defiance of her stepmother. A revolution brims beneath the surface and she must decide whether to team up with a group of brave girls to fight—even if it means losing the man she loves.

    Snow Falling, by Jane Villanueva
    I’m super excited about this winter romance—because it’s the “book-within-the-TV-show from the CW’s hit show Jane the Virgin! In Miami at the turn of the 20th century, a girl named Josephine believes her life is perfect: she has a good job at a hotel, and has just gotten engaged…but then a mysterious railroad tycoon shows up to disturb all her plans.

    A Cold Day for Murder, by Dana Stabenow
    A classic detective story that takes place in the Alaskan north. Kate has left the D.A.’s office for a return to her job as a cop…and when a ranger goes missing, she’s the only one brave enough to face the cold.

    Black Ice, by Becca Fitzpatrick
    The classic snowstorm thriller gets a YA twist: Britt is ready to hike the Teton Range, but then her ex-boyfriend shows up. The ex-boyfriend she can’t stop thinking about. The one she gets separated from by a snowstorm…only to be taken hostage, at which point she can only hope that he still loves her enough to find her.

    A Breath of Snow and Ashes, by Diana Gabaldon
    So, since this is the 6th book in the Outlander series, I’d recommend reading the other books first…but the title is so wintery, I couldn’t resist including it! (Mild spoilers ahead.) This installment of the epic romance finds Jamie and Claire on the verge of the American Revolution, and worried about whether they will survive the battle to come.

    Boy, Snow, Bird, by Helen Oyeyemi
    A fairytale retelling like no other. In 1953, Boy travels to a small town and marries a local man, becoming stepmother to his beautiful daughter, Snow. But Boy’s growing hatred towards Snow only increases when her baby, Bird, is born dark-skinned, revealing her husband’s family as African Americans passing for white.

    Snowfall at Willow Lake, by Susan Wiggs
    Sophie travels to dangerous places to help those in need—but after surviving a terrible trauma, she returns home to Willow Lake. She’s spent enough time saving others; now it’s time to save herself. And what she finds does exactly that: a love with Noah, the local vet, who ignites a passion within her she never thought she’d feel again.

    Biting Cold, by Chloe Neill
    Imagine being turned into a vampire without your consent…that’s what happened to Merit. But she’s made lemonade out of a dark situation, turning her position into one of power, tracking down a supernatural creature with the goal of causing havoc.

    Cold-Hearted Rake, by Lisa Kleypas
    Devon Ravenel is a rake, and proud of it—he wants no other responsibilities than figuring out which woman to charm that week. But when he finds himself responsible for the fates of three young girls after inheriting their father’s earldom—and one of them, in particular, who beguiles and tempts him—he knows it’s time for his cold heart to let in a little warmth.

    The Snow Queen, by Mercedes Lackey
    A queen with a heart of ice is accused of attacking innocent people, and in response she decides to journey through her kingdom of winter to find the imposter responsible for damaging her reputation.

    The Winter Crown, by Elizabeth Chadwick
    Fans of the classic movie Lion in Winter will love this historical novel about Eleanor of Aquitaine. Frustrated with her role as mother, isolated from her husband, and tempted by the promise of power, Eleanor makes a dangerous choice to defy her King and seize power for herself.

    Marrying Winterbourne, by Lisa Kleypas
    Ambition can turn the heart cold, which is what has happened to Rhys Winterborne; a common-born man who has risen to success. So when he decides he must bed Helen Revanel, he is unprepared to be met with ice. Helen finds herself tempted by Rhys’ passion and looks, but when an enemy threatens their growing love, she finds herself willing to risk it all to keep it.

    The Winds of Winter, by George R. R. Martin
    Okay, I admit it: this one is kind of a joke. Winter has come, but will The Winds of Winter ever be published?? Only time will tell, and we all know Westerosi winters are long.

    What winter romances do you love?

    The post 50 Delightful Winter Romances appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

     
  • Amanda Diehl 3:00 pm on 2017/10/12 Permalink
    Tags: , , , beauty like the night, , , , , elyse springer, , heels over head, , , kirsten ashley, nalini singh, , , , , , , the deep end, , the pages of the mind, , ,   

    Romance Recommendations for Your Zodiac Sign 

    Playing matchmaker with readers and romance novels is so much fun! I’m also a huge zodiac junkie. I read my horoscope routinely and go absolutely nuts for compatibility charts. Inspired by traits of the twelve signs, here are some reading recommendations, though don’t take them too seriously. I won’t tell if you want to dip into the recs for other signs!

    Aquarius: Heels Over Head, by Elyse Springer
    First off, Aquarius is a water sign and a romance featuring professional divers and swimmers is pretty on the nose. Brandon Evans is aloof and carefree. He also knows how good of a diver he is. Meanwhile, Jeremy Reeve is struggling with his family’s feelings on his sexuality. He thinks his only hope of being accepted is by winning an Olympic medal. While Brandon and Jeremy seem like opposites on the surface, they’re rather complementary as teammates and it’s beautiful to see the divers find a sense a community within their sport.

    Pisces: The Duchess Deal, by Tessa Dare
    Pisces are known to be compassionate and selfless, but that can often bite them in the butt later on. The Duchess Deal has a battle-scarred hero who has a nightly hobby of fighting London’s riffraff, but what he wants deep down is an heir. Emma Gladstone is the daughter of a vicar and a seamstress, and she sees beneath the Duke of Ashbury’s physical insecurities. She agrees to help him with his heir problem, but she has a few conditions. Ash forbids kissing. Emma wants to share a meal every night. Though they both agree to help one another, they’ll definitely get more than they bargained for with this arrangement.

    Aries: Hate to Want You, by Alisha Rai
    Speaking as an Aries myself, I know we’re a bit turbulent and moody, but we’re also confident and incredibly passionate. Hate to Want You is pretty emotional and is bursting with dramatic family secrets and scandals. In a Romeo and Juliet-esque romance, Livvy Kane and Nicholas Chandler feel as though they can’t be together because of their families and accompanying baggage. But one night a year, they agree to meet in the bedroom. However, their forbidden romance can no longer remain a secret as their arrangement becomes complicated: Livvy doesn’t show for their scheduled yearly meeting and instead returns to their hometown.

    Taurus: The Pages of the Mind, by Jeffe Kennedy
    Tauruses are known to be practical and responsible, but a bit uncompromising, which is why Dafne, the scholarly librarian heroine of The Pages of the Mind, is a great fit. Dedicated to her job, she travels on behalf of her queen to help successfully incorporate the northern kingdoms into her queen’s realm. There, she meets a barbarian king with a significant language barrier between them. Dafne’s resolve never falters even as King Nakoa has her submit to marriage in order to broker a new alliance. Dafne handles things in stride, surprisingly, and the way she adapts to a new kingdom is rather sweet.

    Gemini: The Deep End, by Kristen Ashley
    Gemini are often defined as having two different personalities and the submissive Alpha hero of The Deep End is sure to appeal to both. Outside the bedroom, Olivier is strong, masculine, and all Alpha. Then he joins the Honey Club and meets Amelie, a cold, calculating Domme who likes her men submissive. Having an “Alpha-sub” is an interesting twist in characterization, especially since the heroine is often in a position of power in the bedroom. This romance is also heavy on erotic content, but that doesn’t mean it lacks in a beautiful, developing romance between Olly and Amelie.

    Cancer: Beauty Like the Night, by Joanna Bourne
    While Cancers can be incredibly empathetic, they can also be a bit manipulative. Sorry, Cancers! But a historical romance with espionage and spy shenanigans is a perfect romance read for you. Sèverine de Cabrillac and Raoul Deverney are brought together by a similar goal: justice. When Sèverine seeks out Raoul’s help in rescuing her missing daughter, Raoul knows that this mission could very well lead him to the killer of his estranged wife. Brought together by grief and worry, the pair quickly become a formidable and rather cutthroat team. It’s a romance with some bite!

    Leo: Dating You/Hating You, by Christina Lauren
    Leos are charismatic, funny, and often the life of the party. They’re also stubborn and demand a lot of attention. And trust me, Dating You/Hating You is going to demand nearly all of your free time. It’s also really hilarious. Evelyn Abbey thought she met a really great guy at a friend’s Halloween Party, but when she realizes that same guy, Carter Aaron, is now her competition at work after a company merger, their romance quickly skids to a halt. There’s an office prank war, an oblivious boss who things dog treats are granola bars, and some serious girl power in this battle-of-the-sexes workplace romance.

    Virgo: The Winter King, by C.L. Wilson
    When it comes to Virgos, they’re incredibly detailed, but are also frequently drawn to nature. A fantasy romance seems like a sure bet! Wilson’s fantasy romances have some amazing world-building from the differing kingdoms to how magic operates from person to person. The heroine can also summon storms. How cool is that! Wynter Atrialan hopes to get revenge on the king of Summerlea by taking one of his daughters, Khamsin Coruscate, as his bride. What Wynter doesn’t count on is Khamsin enjoying her newfound sense of freedom. The settings are descriptive and the courtship is lovely in this utterly bewitching fantasy romance.

    Libra: A New Leash on Love, by Debbie Burns
    Gentle and with a love of keeping company, Libras always strike me as being on the sweeter side of the astrological spectrum. A New Leash on Love is an adorable contemporary romance, as if it weren’t obvious by the chocolate lab puppy on the cover. Megan Anderson runs the local no-kill shelter, dedicating her life to helping animals in need. Craig Williams hates that he has to take his daughter’s new dog to the shelter, but since his divorce seems to suffer one misstep after another. When he drops the dog off, he isn’t counting on a tense confrontation with the shelter’s owner. Their first meeting doesn’t go particularly well, to say the least, but things definitely improve on their second meeting. And the third. Pick this one up, if you like romances with plenty of cute, furry secondary characters.

    Scorpio: The Chase, by Vanessa Fewings
    Scorpios are the ones you call when you need some resourceful and courageous. They can meet a challenge head-on, but they’re steadfast in their beliefs and can hold things close to the vest. The Chase is a contemporary romance with elements of suspense as the heroine, Zara Leighton, is enlisted to track down an international art thief. It’s a case she could only dream of. There’s just one problem and that’s her investigation firm’s billionaire client: Tobias Wilder. Enigmatic and mysterious, Tobias seems like the perfect suspect—or Zara’s greatest distraction.

    Sagittarius: Roman Crazy, by Alice Clayton and Nina Bocci
    If there’s one weakness to being a Sagittarius, it’s the call of wanderlust and the need for travel! With her divorce nearing finalization, Avery Bardot restarts her life for the summer in beautiful Rome, Italy. She spends her days exploring the city and her nights eating amazing food. It’s in Rome, surprisingly, that she meets the one man she never forgot: Marcello Bianchi, and the feeling seems to be mutual. Though with the summer quickly approaching its end, Avery isn’t sure if she can give up her adventurous life in Italy and return to the States.

    Capricorn: Silver Silence, by Nalini Singh
    Capricorns are masters of self-control, but when it comes to their family, all bets are off. Silver Mercant helps run an international emergency response network. It’s practically her job to remain calm under pressure. Then she meets Valentin Nikolaev, a bear shifter and leader of his powerful clan. There’s something about Silver that sparks an undeniable interested in Val and when an unknown force begins to threaten Silver’s life, Val will protect her at any cost. And we all know what happens when you poke a bear.

    What’s your sign? (And what’s your favorite romance?)

    The post Romance Recommendations for Your Zodiac Sign appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

     
  • Cristina Merrill 5:00 pm on 2017/09/05 Permalink
    Tags: , chasing red, chelle bliss, going dark, , , , misadventures of a city girl, , nalini singh, , , second chance girl, , the chosen   

    Romance Roundup: Giraffe Keepers, Mountain Men, and SEAL Agents 

    This week’s Romance Roundup includes a vampire who is feeling very protective, a gamekeeper who finds love with the new bad boy in town, and a famous divorcee who meets an isolated mountain man.

    Going Dark, by Monica McCarty
    Marine ecologist Annie Henderson heads over to Scotland to protest some offshore drilling that does not jive with her ideas of peace and happiness. She runs into Dan Warren, the sea boat captain who can captain all of our boats in any body of water any day of the week. Annie and Dan don’t exactly have the warm fuzzies for each other right away, but they soon get to know each other and Annie realizes there is more to him than his grumpy mood and his smoldering body. He might be undercover, though, so he can’t get too outwardly emotional, but Annie brings out his deep desire to write sappy poetry and give her all of the pleasure. This is the first book in McCarty’s new Lost Platoon series, which is about a group of SEAL agents who are presumed dead – but are very much alive and hot! (Available in paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on September 5.)

    Chasing Red, by Isabelle Ronin
    Basketball player Caleb Lockhart is the ultimate catch with his lofty ambitions and rock-hard body. Veronica Stafford is a super smart college student who just got kicked out of her apartment and might need a place to crash. When they meet, Caleb realizes he’d like her to be part of his life plan. She was wearing a red dress, for one, which he found pretty hard to resist. (Note to self: Do some online shopping!) She’s not going to be the easiest lady to get, though, so Caleb will have to use every trick up his sleeve to win her over. Can he convince Veronica that he can offer her far more than just endless merrymaking sessions in between the sheets? This is the first book in Ronin’s Chasing Red series. (Available in paperback and NOOK on September 5.)

    Misadventures of a City Girl, by Chelle Bliss and Meredith Wild
    Madison Atwood just got divorced from a major Hollywood figure, so she’s got to nurse a broken heart while also dodging the media. (Think paparazzi, tabloids, TMZ, the works.) She finds solace in Avalon Springs, California, and she finds more than she bargained for when she runs into Luke Dawson. He’s got that whole sexy mountain man thing going for him, which helps make up for his broodiness. He wants to live in isolation, which might be hard to do with a woman like Madison. They begin an acquaintance, which is quickened when they end up under the same roof together for a short period that involves frolicking for hours on end. (Now THAT’S how you disconnect from the outside world!) Here’s hoping that makes them realize they are actually quite perfect for each other! This is the first book in the very entertaining Misadventures series. (Available in hardcover, audiobook, and NOOK on September 12.)

    Second Chance Girl, by Susan Mallery
    Matthias Mitchell is feeling all of the pains after a family betrayal, so he does what seems like the most sensible thing to do: He moves. His new home is Happily Inc., California, a popular wedding destination town crawling with bridesmaids. He figures this will ensure hookups galore but ZERO commitments, thank you very much. (Dude, really?! Come on!) He soon realizes, though, that local gamekeeper Carol Lund is a very special lady indeed. Carol cares for a giraffe (A GIRAFFE!!! CUTE!!!), and Matthias decides he wants to help Carol adopt a herd because – and this is news to yours truly – giraffes can actually get pretty lonely. (Sounds like a metaphor for our buddy Matthias.) Will he give up his romping ways and realize that Carol is the only woman he ever wants to romp with? This is the second book in Mallery’s Happily Inc. series. (Available in paperback and NOOK on September 26.)

    The Chosen, by J.R. Ward
    This is the latest book in Ward’s very sexy and entertaining Black Dagger Brotherhood series. In this installment, the Black Dagger Brotherhood is engaging in a bit of manhandling. Their captive is Xcor, who leads the Band of Bastards, and he is undergoing some pretty intense interrogation tactics. Granted, he hasn’t always been on his best behavior, but he’s still a person with feelings. More specifically, he still has feelings for Layla. She’s the Chosen, and she’s pretty much always loved Xcor right back. (After everything he’s been through, what woman wouldn’t want to give him all of the TLC she has to offer?!) Here’s hoping that these two lovers catch a break and that they can work together to save their people from unpleasant things, like death and doom and catastrophe and pretty much any other awful thing there is. No pressure, you two! (Available in paperback on September 26.)

    Archangel’s Viper, by Nalini Singh
    Holly Chang has had it rough. She used to be known as Sorrow, so we can only imagine, and recently she was turned into a bloodthirsty lady by a nutty archangel. She’s caught the eye of Venom, a private guard of the Archangel Raphael. (Venom, you can stand guard over all of us any day of the week!) Venom may be a dangerous vampire, but Holly soon brings out his softer side, which is no way diminishes his sinewy physique. This is a good thing, because someone has put a bounty on Holly, and times are rough in the Guild Hunter world. Can Holly and Venom manage to control their bloodier urges and create a peaceful existence together? (Or at least one that involves them fighting the bad guys together?) This is the tenth book in Singh’s Guild Hunter series. (Available in paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on September 26.)

    What romances are on your TBR pile this month?

    The post Romance Roundup: Giraffe Keepers, Mountain Men, and SEAL Agents appeared first on Barnes & Noble Reads.

     
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