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PREMIUM

Wild Cowboy Country

Though the story features an interesting premise and a competent narrative, the central romance fails to engage readers fully.
PREMIUM

To Catch an Earl

Bateman’s second in the popular “Bow Street Bachelor” series (after This Earl of Mine) is an alluring cat-and-mouse tale between two deserving adversaries. For Regency romance fans wishing for thrills in their to-be-read list.
PREMIUM

Never Conspire with a Sinful Baron

Miller (Never Kiss a Notorious Marquess) continues her “Infamous Lords” series with a charming entry featuring a surprisingly sweet hero engaging in a romantic rivalry to win a most worthy heroine.
PREMIUM

A Duke, the Lady, and a Baby

There’s enough camp in this story to house an army, but debuter Riley delivers a fine first outing in what looks to be a promising new series, welcoming a determined West Indian heroine to the Regency subgenre.
PREMIUM

Side Trip

Fans of conventional contemporary romances may be put off by the meandering and melodramatic way that the hero and heroine finally get their happily ever after. However, readers of romantic dramas à la Nicholas Sparks will likely be more tolerant of the story’s contortions.
PREMIUM

Boyfriend Material

Hall (How To Bang a Billionaire) delivers a comedic romance with a not-very-sympathetic hero who tries to be better, a sexy barrister, and a gaggle of oddball secondary characters. Fans of Casey McQuiston’s Red, White & Royal Blue may enjoy.
PREMIUM

Marry in Scarlet

Fans of multiaward winner Gracie (Marry in Haste), as well as devotees of traditional Regencies (think Georgette Heyer), will appreciate the familiar tomboy-tames-duke story, but readers with modern sensibilities may be turned off by the hero’s old-fashioned ideas about women.
PREMIUM

Relentless in Texas. ­

With so many characters from previous books (Mistletoe in Texas; Fearless in Texas), it is recommended that readers start at the beginning of the series to avoid any confusion. Fans of gritty cowboy romances will thoroughly enjoy.
PREMIUM

Say Yes to the Duke

Though it takes some time for the story to warm up in the first act, best-selling James (Three Weeks with Lady X) comes through with another heartfelt, sensuous entry in the Wilde family saga (after Say No to the Duke).
PREMIUM

Issued

With a captivating—although at times unbelievable—plot, this is a delightful, escapist book for fans of the arranged marriage trope.
PREMIUM

The Love Scam

The characters and banter make this latest from Davidson (“Undead” series) a fast, fun, and uproariously entertaining read. There is plenty here to offer romance readers lookingher list of suspects. If all that wasn’t enough for something special and different.
PREMIUM

The Devil of Downtown

Shupe (A Scandalous Deal) concludes the stunning Gilded Age New York–set “Uptown Girls” trilogy with a bang, bringing together a least-likely love match with explosive results. While readers can start with this book, they’ll get the full impact of the Greene sisters’ saga by beginning with The Rogue of Fifth Avenue.
PREMIUM

Butterfly Bayou

Blake (Evidence of Desire) has created a couple to root for, along with memorable supporting characters and story lines with depth. Readers will be eager to visit Papillion again.
PREMIUM

The Ingredients of You and Me

The romance is predictable yet satisfying, but the true charm of this story is the path Parker takes to rediscovering her passion for baking with help from a cast of supporting characters that will make readers want to reach for the first two books in the series and look forward to future installments.

PREMIUM

The Highlander’s English Bride

In the third book of the “Clan Kendrick” series, Kelly (The Highlander Who Protected Me) continues to show her skill at pairing witty banter and adventure-driven characters in a late-Regency romance. Fun for readers who prefer a heroine who does as much rescuing as the hero.

PREMIUM

This Wandering Heart

This is a rather predictable yet enjoyable story about forgiveness, following your dreams, and everything not being as simple as you first imagined.

PREMIUM

When You Wish Upon a Rogue

Bennett delivers a dashing Regency romance featuring a wounded earl and an unyielding heroine with strong convictions. The third of the “Debutante Diaries” (after The Duke Is But a Dream) can easily serve as an introduction to the series.

PREMIUM

Dream Maker

The characters aren’t very likable, and the plot drags out way too long. Content warning for mentions of rape and violence. Recommended only for Ashley’s fans and where her other books circulate well.

Recipe for Persuasion

Clever allusions to Persuasion aside (even Jane Austen fans will be challenged to spot them all), this is a sumptuously multilayered story about the ways love gets tangled in family life and romantic relationships. Highly recommended.

PREMIUM

Rakes and Roses

A desperate hero finds salvation with an older, wealthier heroine in an unusual twist on the typical romance power dynamic. Kilpack’s (Daisies & Devotion) story will appeal to readers looking for themes of redemption and a mild sensuality.

PREMIUM

Iditarod Nights

Published in partnership with Multnomah County Library and Portland State University’s student-run Ooligan Press, Hiday’s fast-paced, well-researched romance will be perfect for readers following the actual race and for ­Iditarod displays.

PREMIUM

Hideaway

Roberts’s legions of fans will want to add Caitlyn Sullivan’s story to their lists. [See Prepub Alert, 11/11/19.]

PREMIUM

Gone with the Rogue

Though the romance starts promisingly, the characters never quite feel well-rounded enough to make the story emotionally engaging. An optional purchase for most libraries and for fans of traditional Regencies.

PREMIUM

The Banty House

Brown (Cowboy Courage) delivers a heartwarming read that twines faith, healing, and family against the backdrop of a small Texas town. Readers will be charmed by the antics of the three wily Carson sisters, while a slow-to-bloom and tender romance develops.

PREMIUM

The Fiery Crown

Kennedy’s second in the “Forgotten Empires” trilogy (after The Orchid Throne) does an excellent job of setting the stage for the conclusion. Lia and Con’s move from enemies to lovers to partners is rocky but dynamic, and readers will be fascinated by the secrets revealed.

PREMIUM

The Boyfriend Project

Rochon’s (“Moments in Mapleville” series) latest is ideal for anyone wanting positive representations of strong women in STEM fields, especially with its exploration of the specific challenges faced by black women. It will also please fans of office romances and Christina Lauren’s Dating You/Hating You.

Chasing Cassandra

Kleypas’s dialog sizzles with sexual tension and witty banter, while the enjoyable secondary characters, particularly the tough but sensitive street urchin Bazzle add humor and warmth. Simply delightful. Recommended for all libraries that serve romance readers.

First Comes Scandal: A Bridgertons Prequel

Quinn is in her usual fine form. The newly launched Netflix series will ensure more fans, but Nicholas and Georgie will be a hit with longtime readers and newcomers alike.
PREMIUM

Not That Kind of Guy

Readers who enjoy strong and prickly heroines such as Rhiannon from Alisha Rai’s The Right Swipe will root for Bridget as she works through her fears and desires without ever compromising herself or her beliefs.

Sweet & Saucy Reads by Burrowes, Hibbert, Jackson, Lee, Wilsner, & Others | Romance

PREMIUM

The Marriage Game

This witty and delightful story about family, forgiveness, and letting go is utterly satisfying. Desai’s first book will be a hit with fans of Sonya Lalli’s The Matchmaker’s List.

Take a Hint, Dani Brown

Hibbert’s follow up to Get a Life, Chloe Brown, featuring Dani’s sister, is another superb and emotionally rich romance. Grief and turmoil are expertly balanced with hilarious wit, making the story both complex and immensely readable. The characters are vibrant, and their chemistry is scorching. Remarkable. [See Prepub Alert, 12/19.]

Something To Talk About

This debut is an unputdownable slow-burn romance with well-drawn and incredibly real characters. Wilsner does an amazing job exploring a Hollywood love story in the middle of a #metoo movement.
PREMIUM

The Virgin and the Rogue

A light and enjoyable comedy of errors from best-selling Jordan (The Duke’s Stolen Bride); this reads like a sexier version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
PREMIUM

Heiress for Hire

Readers who enjoy strong elements of crime solving in their romances will love Minerva and Chase’s sleuthing, but be prepared to collect the entire series for closure on the mystery.
PREMIUM

A Taste of Sage

Santos’s debut blends the rare but real condition of synesthesia into a fast-paced if uneven romance. The recipes throughout make this a perfect recommendation to those checking out cookbooks with their romances.
PREMIUM

Real Men Knit

Jackson, writing for the first time under her new pen name, has created a relationship where sparks fly and a compelling family for her to plumb in future installments of the new series. Put this in the hands of K.M. Jackson (As Good as the First Time) readers, yarn lovers, or anyone who enjoys a contemporary romance series involving a dynamic family. [See Prepub Alert, 11/11/19.]
PREMIUM

Felice

Roth (“Those Magnificent Malverns” series) kicks off a new series set in pre-Civil War New Orleans at a galloping pace. The well-drawn setting, Felice’s verve, and a cast of bold secondary characters illuminate every page.
PREMIUM

Loathe at First Sight

Melody’s characterization and voice sparkle throughout, despite extraneous plot points that make the story feel unfocused at times. Smart, punchy, and memorable.
PREMIUM

Wolf Under Fire

This first installment in Tyler’s new series gives a good introduction to members of the newly formed team. The story is action packed, so readers who enjoy a little romance amid intense car chases and explosions will be wholly satisfied.
PREMIUM

A Sweet Mess

Lee’s (Temporary Wife Temptation) latest is perfect for anyone who enjoyed Amy E. Reichert’s The Coincidence of Coconut Cake. Readers will get lost in Aubrey’s sugary creations while rooting for the characters to find their happily ever after.
PREMIUM

Until the End

In this pulse-pounding, military-heavy romance, Rushdan’s well-crafted characters jump off the page and will captivate lovers of romantic thrillers.
PREMIUM

The Highland Rogue

Highlanders, high seas, and brigands ahoy! There’s never a dull moment in Jarecki’s (The Highland Earl) swashbuckling adventure, which feels like a wonderful blend of Outlander and Pirates of the Caribbean.
PREMIUM

The Wrong Mr. Darcy

Those hoping for a contemporary retelling of Pride and Prejudice will likely be disappointed, as any similarities to Jane Austen’s classic novel distract from the story rather than add depth. Fans of sports romance in which twists and drama abound may find it more enjoyable, though at times the plot feels overstuffed as threads and story lines appear suddenly or are left dangling without conclusion.

A Duke by Any Other Name

The latest in Burrowes’s stunning Rogues to Riches” Regency-era series shines as a standout in the historical romance subgenre but is also a powerful story all on its own. The determined Althea charms readers right alongside the taciturn yet deep down tender Nathaniel. Highly recommended.
PREMIUM

Island Affair

Readers who love the “fake dating” trope or romances with a backdrop of family drama will enjoy this one. Content warnings for discussions of eating disorders, cancer, and loss.

Tantalizing Reads from Ashford, Davidson, London, Lorret, Rodale, & Others | Romance

PREMIUM

The Tourist Attraction

Morganthaler’s debut is an utterly delightful romance with humor, small-town high jinks, and protagonists who share great chemistry.
PREMIUM

The Earl Takes a Fancy

After a somewhat shaky beginning, Heath (The Duchess in His Bed) manages to flesh out her characters enough to add another enjoyable, emotional chapter to the Trewlove saga.
PREMIUM

Conventionally Yours

In the end, this captivating, nerdy romance delivers a satisfying happily ever after.

Lord Holt Takes a Bride

A rollicking Regency road trip with plenty of heat. Fans of Lorret (The Rogue To Ruin) will devour; new readers will want more.
PREMIUM

The Billionaire in Boots

This fast-paced, charming novel is perfect for fans of the earlier books in the series and contemporary romance in general.
PREMIUM

Pivot

This anthology is perfect for readers of romantic suspense who are looking for more from the included authors or for introductions to writers who are sure to become future favorites.
PREMIUM

Night of the Billionaire Wolf

Spear (A Billionaire Wolf for Christmas) delivers a layered suspense story, but too many plot threads detract from a romance that is slow to build and sometimes shaky. Paranormal suspense readers seeking a prevalent romance may wish to look elsewhere.
PREMIUM

In Bed with the Earl

Readers will be drawn to Verity’s independence and Malcolm’s compelling backstory, forgiving a few oddly timed intimate moments, as the pair moves between London’s seedy underbelly and high society to carve out a place of their own.
PREMIUM

If I Never Met You

Readers will certainly fall for Laurie and Jamie’s shenanigans in McFarlane’s (You Had Me at Hello) latest. While the recognizable beats of the familiar plot are all there, Laurie’s arc stands out.
PREMIUM

After Sundown

This new collaboration between Howard and Jones (after Running Wild) weaves a moving love story into a community’s journey through hardship and sacrifice. The worldbuilding in this romantic thriller clearly shows how a cataclysmic event brings these self-imposed loners, and their community, together.
PREMIUM

A Duke Too Far

Ashford continues this sweet Regency series (after How To Cross a Marquess) with a irresistible love story featuring a fearless heroine and a reluctant hero who find the answers they’re searching for in each other, aided by an entertaining ensemble of secondary characters. Series fans will gravitate toward this title, but new readers should start with the first book, Brave New Earl.
PREMIUM

Badger to the Bone

Although the writing is uneven and new series readers may find it hard to keep track of all the characters, the dialog is funny and the story is enjoyable once readers let themselves go along for the ride. This book will appeal to fans of Laurenston’s (Hot and Badgered) earlier work. Purchase where the author or other shifter romances are popular.
PREMIUM

Starbreaker

Bouchet amps up the action and shock factor in this sequel to Nightchaser, while further rounding out the characters, relationships, and plans for this universe. Libraries owning the first book definitely need this one, and others may want to go ahead and get both.
PREMIUM

The Most Eligible Lord in London

With a love triangle, a protective Great Dane, and meddling mothers, this new Regency series launch brings on the drama but is filled with tenderness. Readers who recognize characters from Quinn’s earlier “Marriage Game” series (Enticing Miss Eugenie Villaret) will be especially rewarded.
PREMIUM

Bears Behaving Badly

Davidson (Undead and Unwed) is known for combining paranormal romance with a healthy serving of humor, and she brings a heaping dose of both to enhance this newest series.

An Heiress To Remember

Rival store owners, second-chance romance, and a focus on feminism are wrapped up in a thoroughly fun package that’s part Mr. Selfridge mixed with a dash of Gilded Age You’ve Got Mail, producing a winning addition (after Duchess by Design) to Rodale’s popular series.
PREMIUM

Cowboy Firefighter Heat

Recommended for fans of the long-running series and readers of romances with a strong Western influence.
PREMIUM

Cross Her Heart

This romantic suspense tale thrusts readers into the action, with one heart-racing, adrenaline-filled scene after another. Leigh’s (“Morgan Dane” series) vulnerable yet strong lead characters add depth to an exciting new series.

Romantic Reads for Valentine's Day | Wyatt's World

The Winter Companion

Fans of the “Parish Orphans of Devon” series will adore this final installment, reuniting the orphans and their loves. Matthews (A Convenient Fiction) sensitively portrays a neuroatypical protagonist facing ingrained prejudices, even from friends, and how such preconceptions limits a person’s potential.
PREMIUM

His Secret Mistress

Maxwell (If Ever I Should Love You) provides a brave heroine whom readers will root for in love and life in this first book of a new series. While the couple’s intriguing backstory isn’t as fleshed out as it could be, readers looking for an unconventional Regency romance should give this a try.

The Rakess

Highly recommended for those unafraid of a grittier love story.

Girl Gone Viral

Rai follows up The Right Swipe with a sweet and spicy romance that delves into some deep issues of mental health for both main characters (severe anxiety and PTSD), as well as the effects of social media on people’s lives. Essential for public libraries. [See Prepub Alert, 10/14/19.]
PREMIUM

The Honey-Don’t List

The author duo’s many fans will enjoy this charming romance. [see the Q&A, p. 71.]
PREMIUM

The Happy Ever After Playlist

With a playlist running throughout the novel, this book will strike a chord with music-loving romance readers. A first-tier purchase for public libraries.
PREMIUM

Wild, Wild Rake

MacGregor’s latest in the “Cavensham Heiresses” series (The Bad Luck Bride) will delight those looking to warm their hearts with a tender read. Passionately defiant of her past, Avalon aims to right the wrongs in Regency England, while Devan stands at the ready to help her. Though the sixth book in the series, this is still a great jumping-on point for new readers.
PREMIUM

The Bachelor

Jeffries (“Sinful Suitors” series) explores the cultural mores of early Regency London to weave a tale of blackmail, spies, and a Season debut. Joshua is a fascinating hero, the only untitled male among the series’ rather gentried family and always aware of the fact. There is an overarching series mystery developing, but readers yet to pick up the previous title, Project Duchess, shouldn’t be deterred.
PREMIUM

In Search of Truth

The plot is fast paced but may require some suspension of disbelief, while the romance is mediocre at best, with not much in the way of chemistry between Allison and Zack. Purchase only where previous series entries (Every Deep Desire) circulate well.
PREMIUM

Undercover Bromance

Adams’s latest (The Bromance Book Club) combines humorous elements that balance the heavier themes of workplace harassment, resulting in a fast-paced romance that offers both laughs and greater social relevance.
PREMIUM

Every Bit a Rogue

Basso (Intimate Betrayal) allows for romance to kindle and build between Emma and Jon with just a touch of drama to keep the plot compelling. This is perfect for readers who prefer a Regency romance driven by the characters’ desires rather than an outside element of suspense.
PREMIUM

Promised

Debut author Garriott’s smooth prose and character-driven story will enthrall readers looking for sweet historicals with Austen-esque plots.
PREMIUM

Hearts on Hold

The sex is exciting and sometimes risqué (getting it on in a public greenhouse!), but the more satisfying and well-developed elements are the examination of identity and the importance of supportive friends. Reid’s latest (The Write Escape) is a win for readers who desire steam and substance.

10 Fast-Paced Romances Involving Scandals, Women Duped or in Charge, Post-Grief Love, & Friends Helping Others | February 2020

Taji from Beyond the Rings

This sf queer romance includes some violence, as well as discussion and depiction of sexual coercion and abuse, but is overall fiercely joyful. It will be welcomed by fans of Cooper (Let There Be Light) and new readers seeking nuanced world- and relationship building.
PREMIUM

Cowboy Fever

Fans of Carolyn Brown and Lori Wilde will need to hold on to their hats as they navigate the exciting twists of this Western sizzler.
PREMIUM

The Way Back to You

Best for readers of sweet romances already familiar with the series.

Love's Secrets | Romance Reviews, Dec. 2019

PREMIUM

Engaged to the Earl

Although Berne’s (The Bride Takes a Groom) dialog for female characters is often melodramatic and may not appeal to every reader, followers of the series will enjoy seeing a prodigal son returning home to find his match.
PREMIUM

Lean on Me

Fans of Simmons’s books (“Love at the Crossroads” series) will probably want to pick up this first in a new series; others may wish to pass.
PREMIUM

An Everyday Hero

Though part of the “Heart of a Hero” series (following The Military Wife), Trentham’s romance with themes of family, music, and military can stand alone. Recommended for purchase where contemporary romance is popular.
PREMIUM

The Arrangement

A well-curated selection of sexy, short, captivating romances from big-name authors investigating the unexpected twists of arranged marriages.
PREMIUM

The Worst Best Man

Sosa (Acting on Impulse) delivers a steamy and witty enemies-to-lovers romance. Lina and Max’s relationship grows against a rich background of Lina’s Afro-Latinx culture, and readers will enjoy the complex cast of side characters.
PREMIUM

Calling on Quinn

Fans of romances featuring possessive alpha heroes may be the right audience for this one.
PREMIUM

Wicked Cowboy Wolf

Series fans will enjoy Ballenger’s latest, as the heat between Maeve and Rogue smolders on the page. New readers, however, should start at the beginning of the series with Cowboy Wolf Trouble.
PREMIUM

Forbidden Promises

Politics, passion, and family drama combine to make a deliciously soapy second-chance, brother’s-best-friend romance. Readers of Alisha Rai’s “Forbidden Hearts” series or Reese Ryan’s Engaging the Enemy will be tantalized and surprised by the many twists and turns.

The Vanishing

With romance, mystery, intrigue, and a host of paranormal elements, Krentz’s (When All the Girls Have Gone) latest will hook fans across genres. The gratifying denouement leaves room for series potential as well.
PREMIUM

Seduce Me with Sapphires

Readers who delight in a couple that sparks as much fire outside as inside the bedroom will devour Feather’s newest Edwardian romance (after Tempt Me with Diamonds).
PREMIUM

Ignite on Contact

Despite overly descriptive passages that slow down the pacing, Burton (Hot to the Touch) delivers a steamy story with two relationship-shy neighbors whose stubbornness fans their passions. For fans of Erin McCarthy and Bella Andre.
PREMIUM

To Have and To Hoax

Debuter Waters is off to a promising start with a rare historical romantic comedy that is sure to delight fans of either genre. [Previewed in Eve Stano’s Romance Preview, “Love for All,” LJ 10/19.]

An Inconvenient Duke

Action, suspense, seduction, and two determined lovers fighting for what is right provide a host of reasons to read well into the night. Danielle is an extremely compelling heroine who is willing to forgo her own prospects to correct wrongdoing. When combined with Marcus’s conviction and refusal to abandon those he cares about, they make a perfect pair to kick off Harrington's (How I Married a Marquess) latest Regency series.
PREMIUM

Never Kiss a Duke

An unmoored former duke trying to find his footing and navigate a new life and an independent woman confident in the world she’s built from the ground up are surrounded by an engaging cast of secondary characters in this excellent start to a bold and sensual new Regency series from the beloved Frampton (Never a Bride).
PREMIUM

You Deserve Each Other

While many have compared this to Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game, die-hard fans of that work will be disappointed by the lack of passion here. Those seeking a hate-to-love romance, however, should enjoy, as will admirers of Christina Lauren’s Dating You Hating You.
PREMIUM

The Kissing Game

A first-tier purchase for all collections.
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