Posts in the Contemporary genre

Guest Post

Guest Post: “Magnetic Couples” by Santino Hassell

Interborough Santino Hassell

Some of my favorite couples are magnetic—drawn to each other despite being opposites. Ron and Hermione in Harry Potter, Simon and Alisha on Misfits, Han Solo and Princess Leia from Star Wars, and many more. These couples usually have the most interesting relationship dynamics, the funniest banter, and the best buildup of unresolved sexual tension.

I strove to hit those goals with my characters in the Five Boroughs and especially with Raymond and David, the main characters in Sunset Park and my upcoming novel Interborough. Interborough picks up a year after Sunset Park leaves off, and shows the boys working through problems that have arisen in their relationship due to the constant stress of external issues (work, money, family). My goal with Interborough was to show they could make it for the long run, but also to get more of those fan favorite Rayvid moments.

If you’ve forgotten their dynamics, or have never read these characters before, this is a highlight reel of Raymond and David being totally different people who just can’t stay away from each other.

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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: H.M. Ward, S.M. Shade, and Kelly McClymer

It’s raining, it’s pouring, it’s…actually not the worst day on the world. But you know what? You deserve a treat on average days too. Get these steals from H.M. Ward, S.M. Shade, and Kelly McClymer while they last!


Demon Kissed by H.M. Ward

By New York Times bestselling author H.M. Ward
Book #1 in the bestselling Demon Kissed series

Seventeenth birthdays aren’t supposed to suck, but mine does. Literally. Before I know what’s happened a guy knocks me to the ground and tries to suck out my soul. With a kiss. That’s all it takes with his kind. This next part is embarrassing–I thought this guy was my boyfriend. Screw that, I thought he was human, but those creepy, blood red eyes suggest I was mistaken.

This is it, the end of my sucktacularly short life–killed by a creature that’s half vampire, half demon, and smokin’ hot. Killed by a kiss. It sounds poetic until it happens to you.
The world fades to black, but just as I accept my fate, someone saves me. At least I think he saved me, because I’m still alive. It isn’t until much later that I learn what really happened and exactly what it cost me.


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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: Jillie Rivers, Eryn Scott, and Sharon Lynn Fisher

This Deal Alert was brought to you by puns, amazing wordplay, and a tenacious need for more books! Don’t miss these steals from Jillie Rivers, Eryn Scott, and Sharon Lynn Fisher!


Just In Time Cowboy Jillie Rivers
Just in Time Cowboy by Jillie Rivers

When a lightning strike on ancient Sioux holy ground sends mining engineer Kelsey Winter back in time to 1892 Wyoming, she turns to handsome, reckless cowboy Pete Jackson to help her find a way home.

Pete’s happy to help the strange woman in tight denim trousers, despite her odd, cautious ways, when he learns she can assist him with his newly discovered silver mine. But a deadly outlaw wants Pete’s silver, and a Sioux prophecy threatens Kelsey’s return home, and Pete and Kelsey must find a way past their differences, and the century between them, if they, and their growing love, will survive.


The Luck of Rainbow Gold Eryn Scott
The Luck of Rainbow Gold by Eryn Scott

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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: Kennedy Layne, Eugenia Riley, and Brenda Hiatt

Need a break from the politics on your newsfeed? We’ve got just the cure: books. A bunch of them. And for a great price! Don’t miss these steals from Kennedy Layne, Eugenia Riley, and Brenda Hiatt!


CSA Case Files Volume 1 by Kennedy Layne

From USA Today Bestselling Author Kennedy Layne comes the first box set of the CSA Case Files series! Follow along as each book conveys a team member’s story as they work together on investigations that lead them down perilous paths of passion, intrigue and suspense…

Captured Innocence (CSA Case Files 1)

When a killer sets his sights on Lauren, Connor is forced to grabble with the reality of their relationship. He has the training it takes to catch a murderer, but does he have the courage to escape his inner demons and capture Lauren’s heart?

Sinful Resurrection (CSA Case Files 2)

Sins of the past have been resurrected, predetermining Jax and Emily’s path to love. Jax doesn’t know how he’ll walk away this time or if he even wants to. Emily is determined to expose a high-level official within the United Nations and walk away unscathed. She wants a second chance with her first love — even if it kills her.

Renewed Faith (CSA Case Files 3)

Is it possible to renew one’s faith in love? Kevin’s current case crosses paths with Elle’s past. Secrets and lies encircle them as a killer ups the stakes in a cat and mouse game meant for only one winner. When time runs out, Kevin intends to be the last man standing — in life and love.


A Timeswept Christmas Anthology Eugenia Riley
A Timeswept Christmas Anthology by Eugenia Riley

TRAVEL BACK IN TIME FOR THE HOLIDAYS! For a limited time, Eugenia Riley’s charming and touching collection, A Timeswept Christmas Anthology, is bargain priced! And Eugenia’s breathtaking Embers of Time is bargain priced during this same promo!

From the Bestselling Time Travel Romance Author and Winner of the HOLT Medallion: Two Victorian Christmas romance novellas, plus a bonus Valentine’s Day novella, all reissued in a single volume!

CONTENTS:
A CHRISTMAS IN TIME

Cynical reporter Jason Burke embarks on a magical journey back in time to Dickens London, where he discovers the true joys of a Victorian Christmas while meeting the love of his life . . . and struggling to save her from certain death.

CHRISTMAS WITH AN ANGEL

Nathan Fletcher realizes too late how much his bride Emily means to him–only when he learns of her death. But can a Christmas angel intervene and grant the couple one final day to rediscover the glory of their marriage?

TWO HEARTS IN TIME

After receiving a Victorian Valentine, Amanda Brewster turns a corner in time . . . and travels from the Strand in contemporary Galveston, Texas, to the Strand in Victorian London! There Amanda discovers a cure for her broken heart as she is wooed by a handsome, masterful earl.


Rogue’s Honor by Brenda Hiatt

“Brenda Hiatt has created a most different and dashing rogue.” -Kasey Michaels

To escape her stepmother’s matchmaking machinations, Lady Pearl runs away, pretending to be a common housemaid, with the help of her abigail. When she is rescued from the near-disaster of recognition by a charming serving-man, Pearl pretends to be simpleminded to safeguard herself from any unwanted advances. But soon she begins to suspect that her rescuer is far more than the common servant he seemed at first.

Luke St. Clair lives a double life, pretending to be a gentleman while in reality sustaining himself and the needy as the notorious Robin Hood-type thief, the Saint of Seven Dials. The last thing he needs in his life is a beautiful simpleton in need of protection. But “Purdy” proves to be anything but simple—or common! Once he learns the truth, does he dare continue, in the ballrooms of the elite, the flirtation that began in the slums of London? The risk is enormous, but Lady Pearl’s sweet kisses may just be worth it.

Autumn Thorns Yasmine Galenorn
Guest Post

Guest Post: “Romance Shamed” by Melanie Jayne

Better Melanie Jayne

I had heard this term on social media and while reading a few accounts I honestly thought it was much ado ‘bout nothin’, so what if you think what I write or read is silly. I’m always thrilled to see or hear that someone reads- period. To me the key is that people are choosing to read instead of watching TV, gaming, or doing the hundreds of other things that eat up our free time.

Recently I attended a lecture at my local library. A group of library employees sat at my end of the table and I took the opportunity to pimp, err market, my books. The woman next to me asked what I wrote?

So I answered excitedly, “ROMANCE.”

She turned her nose up and sniffed, “I don’t read that fluff.”

What???? Did this woman just snub me? I pressed. “I’m not sure what you mean?”

Then she shifted in her chair and started to look uncomfortable. “Well, it isn’t very realistic is it?”

I pasted a confused look on my face and asked, “Do you mean like the alcoholic murder suspect who solves the murder of the woman that she saw from the train? Or the orphaned boy who goes to a school for the magically gifted?” I could go on and on but I dropped it and chatted with the man to my left.

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Guest Post

Guest Post: “That One Time At The School Dance” by Jenny Holiday

The Gossip Jenny Holiday

1980s nostalgia is strong in my heart, which is funny because, objectively speaking, I didn’t enjoy the 1980s that much. I have this disorder, see, where the image of things I build up in my head doesn’t always accord with my actual lived experience of those same things. (See: That One Time At Camp.) Welcome to Reality Check: 1980s Edition.


This is how the 1980s actually went for me:

I’m in tenth grade. I am a straight-A student. I am a reporter for the school newspaper. I am the co-president of the school’s Amnesty International chapter. As you can probably tell, I am a barrel of laughs. As you can probably also tell, I am single. (I know: shocking.)

The Fixer Jenny HolidayAt our school, different student groups can apply to sponsor the school dances. This means that we take in the money from concessions and ticket sales but have to staff the concessions stand, hire the DJ, advertise, and all that. So the Amnesty International group gets itself lined up to have a dance. Yay! Ours peers would be able to have fun but also, like, be educated about the plight of prisoners of conscience across the world. Win-win!

So I get ready for the dance. I’m probably wearing my rolled-up-and-safety-pinned jeans, black flats, matching black rubber bracelets, and an Amnesty T-shirt with the sleeves rolled. And of course, I have teased my bangs into “the claw” that is so inexplicably popular here in 1988. My two Amnesty co-presidents and I (because when you’re sixteen years old and you’re running an Amnesty International Chapter, that’s how you roll—God forbid that one person should just be in charge) sit down with the DJ to go over our opening set. We remind him that this is an alternative music dance. You, good sir, will be playing Midnight Oil, REM, the Cure, Edie Brickell, and U2. Yes, says the DJ. Got it.

Things go downhill from there. To be honest, it’s all a little bit of a blur in my mind, and not because anyone spiked the punch. (I would not have allowed that. Because I was so much fun in those days.) First, we vastly underrated the demand for Orange Crush and potato chips. The fun of operating the machine that dispenses the pop soon gives way to grim determination as the lines get longer. Everything is sticky. It’s a thousand degrees in the crowded, windowless lunchroom. All the Aquanet that has been holding my claw-bangs in place starts running down my face. Also, I have to do a lot of math in my head to make change, which…cue panic. (There’s a reason I became a writer.)

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Guest Post

Guest Post: Katee Robert’s Top Scary Reads

A Fool For You Katee Robert

Fall is my favorite time of year. I love the crispness of the air, the changing colors, everything pumpkin—and Halloween. There’s something about being able to dress up and pretend to be something else that brings magic back to the real world in the same way that reading a good book does. And the wide array of all things scary is just plain fun.

I’ll confess—I’m a recent horror convert. I never used to like being scared. It comes with having an over-active imagination. The very same thing that allows me to create made-up worlds in my head as a job is the one that keeps me up to all hours of the night, sure that that sound I just heard is a vengeful ghost coming to murder me in my bed (thanks The Grudge).

I devour horror novels now, and I lean heavily toward YA horror. When people ask me for my favorite reads in general, many of the following books make the list, even without the horror caveat.

Without further ado, and in no particular order:

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Q&A

Q&A: Rebecca Brooks of MAKE ME STAY

Make Me Stay Rebecca Brooks

Is it possible for a Q&A to make you fall in love? Or want a new bestie? Because Rebecca Brooks isn’t just an amazing author who is a delight to interview. She also has the best opinions. She is the cool friend. You know what’s even better about this cool friend? She’s got a sexy, heartfelt, completely engrossing book just as great as her called Make Me Stay out right now!


What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?

I love a mix of funny and heartwrenching, with heroines who take charge of their sexuality and get what they want. There are so many I could think of, but When Harry Met Sally, Dirty Dancing, Jerry Maguire, The English Patient, and Obvious Child are definitely top of that list.

 

Describe your favorite scene from each one (you can include a Youtube clip if you want as well).

Obviously the fake orgasm scene at the deli in When Harry Met Sally and “You complete me” from Jerry Maguire! And oh God, when Katharine whispers “I’ve always loved you” as Almásy carries her from a plane crash—GUTTED. I’ll leave two Youtube clips of fun, flirty dance scenes from Dirty Dancing and Obvious Child. I love the Dirty Dancing one because it’s proof that sexy and explicit aren’t always the same thing. And in Obvious Child, it’s a nice reminder that sex and dating are allowed to be fun!

 

 

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Cover Reveals

Cover Reveal: RECKLESS HEARTS by Heather Van Fleet

We are honored to turn the mic over to the amazing Heather Van Fleet for the cover reveal to her latest book, Reckless Hearts! Take a look at the inspiration behind some amazing characters and a stunning cover below! Reckless Hearts debuts February 7th, 2017!


A little over a year ago, I met a man named Collin. He was tall, blessed with the definition of a six pack, and had these clear, blue eyes that would sparkle my way every time I closed my own eyes.

Collin was a little broody, didn’t talk much, and for the life of me, I couldn’t figure out why this was. So I did what every author does when bombarded with an unexpected face, voice, and figure in their head:

I started writing him into a book.

Soon after I began this new literary adventure, Collin’s voice flew out of me like the wind. Not a light breeze, mind you, but hurricane gusts which I couldn’t seem to stop no matter how many times I tried to pull my fingers away from the keyboard. Collin was angry at the world, angry at life, and he wanted me to know it. He also seemed to want me to fix it too, but I didn’t quite know how. I did know one thing about Collin: he loved his family, he loved his best friends like brothers, and most of all he loved his nine-month-old daughter, Chloe, like she was all he’d ever need to live for again.

A little over a year ago, I also met a woman named Addison. She was short, her skin tanned year-round like my oldest daughter, and she also had the very same smile as Shay Mitchell from Pretty Little Liars.

Addie was kind and generous, with an incredibly deep soul and a heart of pure gold that made me feel like I was on top of the world whenever I thought of her. She loved hard, she fought little, yet she had problems…the kind that were a bit too deep to flesh out in my head. So, like Collin, I included Addie in this story, and her voice unfolded in a way that was as natural to me as breathing.

Combining Collin and Addie was either the smartest thing I ever did, or the stupidest. At least that’s how I thought at first. Soon after, there was conflict to be had, incredibly steamy sex that I didn’t know I could write, and pages upon pages of bunting heads, banter, and stolen kisses. Collin and Addie were the most frustrating couple I’d ever written, yet at the same time, they gave me the best ride of my life with their overwhelming and all-consuming, love story.

My hope now is that you will all fall in love with them like I did. ♥  

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Steals & Deals

Deal Alert: Elizabeth A. Reeves, Genevieve Turner, and Ashlee Mallory

It’s Fall! Right now! We’re right at the cusp of jacket weather and unnecessary trips to coffee shops. We’re gathering books to read like they’re a cozy little pile of leaves. So come jump in? (Nailed it. Nailed that visual.) Get these steals from Elizabeth A. Reeves, Genevieve Turner, and Ashlee Mallory while they last!


How (Not) To Kiss a Toad Elizabeth A. Reeves
How (Not) To Kiss a Toad by Elizabeth A. Reeves

Cindy Eller is a witch with a gift for creating decadent desserts highlighting the exotic and spicy flavors of her native Southwest. However, life isn’t always sweet for this magical baker. All her life she’s been cursed– every man she’s ever kissed has turned into a toad. Love isn’t likely to come her way, she knows.

If that weren’t a big enough problem, her ‘curse’ has come to the attention of the Council of Magic and she may never be able to use her powers.

Enter the perfect man– handsome, sweet, and loves food just as much as Cindy does. It would seem to be a match made in Heaven, or is it?

Cindy isn’t the only one keeping secrets.

With toads, cupcakes, romance, magic and ice cream, life never has time to get dull!


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