Friday, April 18, 2014

Snow Way: It's Baaack. Luckily, We Have Hot New Romances For Warmth

(from usatoday.com
by Joyce Lamb)


Check out some highlights from this week's new romance releases …

Dark And Deadly: Eight Bad Boys of Paranormal Romance Boxed Set. Eight hot paranormal romances by New York Times and USA Today bestselling authors. Alpha male bad boys will fulfill your darkest, most deadliest desires in these stories about shifters, werewolves, vampires, magic, special powers and other realms. But only if you dare... Bodyguard by Jennifer Ashley: Elizabeth Chapman is saved from an armed attacker by a Kodiak bear who shifts into a tight-bodied, naked human male. Ronan takes Elizabeth to Shiftertown, becoming her 24/7 bodyguard. Alejandro's Sorceress by Alyssa Day: He's a warrior, hardened by years of protecting his town from vampire attack. She's a garden witch who sees the world in shades of sunshine and delight. Bewitch by Felicity Heaton: A vampire with a bloodstained past and a soul tainted with darkness, Payne is perfect in his self-control, never surrendering to his darkest desires. Now a beautiful witch in the shadowy fae underworld reawakens long denied hungers and tempts him with pleasure. Darkness Falls by Erin Kellison: Agent Malcolm Rook is hunting for people with the rarest of talents — the ability to master dreams. He finds the undeniably gifted Jordan Lane, but she's wary of mysterious Rook and resists his pursuit as long as she can. Rogue's Passion by Laurie London: Blaming himself for the death of a friend, Iron Guild warrior Asher Kane vows to bring those responsible to justice. After he's hurt on a mission and nursed back to health by a beautiful yet mysterious woman with special psychic abilities, this dangerously sexy bad-boy finds himself falling for her. The Forbidden Life of Alex Moore by Erin Quinn: Alex's mission: Kill the hellhounds that have invaded earth and return to his home in the Beyond. But from the start, things go horribly wrong. The hounds are cunning and a human female witnesses their attack — she intervenes and saves Alex's life. The Mating Heat by Bonnie Vanak: Werewolf Kara Mitchell fled with her brother Aiden to Montana after their alpha father punished her for kissing sexy omega werewolf Ryder Carrington. After killing his alpha to save the pack, Ryder now rules, but needs a mate. Trapped by Caris Roane: Mastyr Vampire Zephyr, a one-man fighting force, struggles to save the life of a woman who despises his warrior ways. She's been a thorn in his side, but he has one goal: to keep her safe.

The Collector by Nora Roberts. When professional house-sitter Lila Emerson witnesses a murder/suicide from her current apartment-sitting job, life as she knows it takes a dramatic turn. Suddenly, the woman with no permanent ties finds herself almost wishing for one. Artist Ashton Archer knows his brother isn't capable of violence—against himself or others. He recruits Lila, the only eyewitness, to help him uncover what happened. Ash longs to paint her as intensely as he hungers to touch her. But their investigation draws them into a rarified circle where priceless antiques are bought, sold, gambled away, and stolen, where what you possess is who you are, and where what you desire becomes a deadly obsession.

Hard Time by Cara McKenna. Annie Goodhouse doesn't need to be warned about bad boys; good sense and an abusive ex have given her plenty of reasons to play it safe. But when she steps into her new role as outreach librarian for Cousins Correctional Facility, no amount of good sense can keep her mind—or eyes—off inmate Eric Collier. Eric doesn't claim to be innocent of the crime that landed him in prison. In fact, he'd do it again if that's what it took to keep his family safe. Loyalty and force are what he knows. But meeting Annie makes him want to know more. When Eric begins courting Annie through letters, they embark on a reckless, secret romance—a forbidden fantasy that neither imagines could ever be real…until early parole for Eric changes everything, and forces them both to face a past they can't forget, and a desire they can't deny.

Bad Influence by K.A. Mitchell. Bad in Baltimore, Book 4. The young man the world knew as Jordan Barnett is dead, killed as much by the rejection of his first love at his moment of greatest need, as by his ultra-conservative parents' effort to deprogram the gay away. In his place is Silver, a streetwise survivor who's spent the last three years learning to become untouchable…unless you're willing to pay for the privilege. He shies away from anything that might hold him down long enough for betrayal to find him again. Zebediah Harris spent time overseas, trying to outrun the guilt of turning his back on the young man he loved. Now, almost the moment he sets foot back in Baltimore, he discovers Silver on a street corner in a bad part of town. His effort to make amends lands them both in jail. Trapped together in a cell, Silver sits on his mountain of secrets and plans a seductive form of revenge, but finds that using a heart as a stepping stone is no way to move past the one man he can't forgive, let alone forget.

Far Gone by Laura Griffin. To save her only brother, Andrea Finch must face down a criminal mastermind, the FBI, and her own demons in this thrilling novel from the author of the bestselling Tracers series. Police detective Andrea Finch is a rising star in her department until a split-second decision derails her career. Disgraced and disillusioned, she's on leave from her job when she gets an urgent call from her younger brother. She'd prefer to ignore his latest plea for cash, but this time instinct tells her something is very wrong. Andrea's search for answers takes her to a dusty Texas border town where danger lurks in plain sight and nothing is quite what it seems. FBI agent Jon North is working undercover in west Texas investigating an unsolved murder that may be linked to a broader plot. But when the evidence points to Andrea's brother, Jon finds that persuading the stubborn cop to help will be harder than cracking his toughest case. Andrea must find a way to do what's right while protecting her only sibling. As the clock ticks down on a deadly plot, Andrea and Jon race to confront a heartless killer who will stop at nothing to deliver a final, terrifying message.

Falling for Owen by Jennifer Ryan. The McBrides book two. Attorney by day, rancher by night Owen McBride conquered his dark past and made it his mission to help the innocent—even at the expense of a personal life. But when a client's abusive ex-husband targets Owen and his gorgeous neighbor Claire gets caught in the crossfire, his feelings turn anything but professional. The mysterious beauty awakens something in him, and he'll move heaven and earth to keep her safe. Coffee shop owner Claire Walsh learned the hard way that handsome men aren't to be trusted. Owen may be sexy as hell and determined to take care of her, but she's reluctant to put her heart on the line. His presence in her life puts a target on her back, yet the more time she spends with him, the more she finds she can't help falling for Owen.

What I Thought Was True by Huntley Fitzpatrick. Gwen Castle's Biggest Mistake Ever, Cassidy Somers, is slumming it as a yard boy on her idyllic Nantucket-esque island this summer. He's a rich kid from across the bridge in Stony Bay, and she hails from a family of fishermen and housecleaners who keep the island's summer people happy. Gwen worries a life of cleaning houses will be her fate too, but just when it looks like she'll never escape her past--or the island--Gwen's dad gives her some shocking advice. Sparks fly and secret histories unspool as Gwen spends a gorgeous, restless summer struggling to resolve what she thought was true--about the place she lives, the people she loves, and even herself--with what really is.

The Seelie King by Heather Killough-Walden. Book five in the Big Bad Wolf spinoff series, The Kings. There are a lot of things Selene Trystaine would change about the world if she could. Injustices press in, apathy reigns, and unkindness seems to have taken hold in the crevices of humanity. So when she learns that she is not who she has always believed herself to be and destiny presents her with her birthright, she must battle with her inner demons, even while the handsome and powerful king of those who'd once attempted to destroy her kind discovers her – and begins an all-out attack of seduction on her senses. No one knows Avery's true name. He's the king of the Seelie Fae, a powerful and ancient man who has ruled a beautiful and dangerous world in solitude for longer than human history has been recorded. And he has no reason to believe this solitude will ever change…. Until the other sovereigns of the thirteen kingdoms begin finding their queens one after another. And suddenly, on a hot Spring day, Selene Trystaine appears beside the river Thames like a mirage made real. A fiery soul, a gift of untold magic, and a Changeling without a clue as to who she is are about to turn the supernatural world upside down. But as a new and terrible war is sparked between good and evil, and the losses become insurmountable, Selene and Avery are going to learn that no matter who or what you are… you must be careful what you wish for.

Once Upon a Billionaire by Jessica Clare. The Billionaire Boys Club is a secret society of six men who have vowed success—at any cost. Not all of them are old money, but all of them are incredibly wealthy. They're just not always as successful when it comes to love… As a member of the royal family in a small European country, Griffin Verdi's presence is requested at the wedding of the century. The scholarly billionaire feels out of his depth in social situations, so a good assistant is required—especially when dealing with royal etiquette. Unfortunately for Griffin, he's stuck with Maylee Meriweather, a pretty, charming, and thoroughly unsuitable woman who doesn't know a thing about high society—but she sure can kiss. Her lack of polish may sink Griffin, because after all, even his money can't buy class. But through Maylee's eyes, he's starting to appreciate the simple things in life—if simple means the most complicated woman he's ever met. Maylee is everything Griffin isn't—and everything he wants—if he can let down his guard and step outside his sheltered world…

Unfixable by Tessa Bailey. Willa Peet isn't interested in love. She's been there, done that, and has the shattered heart to prove it. Ready to shake the breakup, she heads to Dublin, Ireland. But there's a problem. A dark-haired, blue-eyed problem with a bad attitude that rivals her own. And he's not doling out friendly Irish welcomes. Shane Claymore just wants to race. The death of his father forced him off the Formula One circuit, but he's only staying in Dublin long enough to sell the Claymore Inn and get things in order for his mother and younger sister. He never expected the sarcastic American girl staying at the inn to make him question everything. But even as Willa and Shane's fiery natures draw them together, their pasts threaten to rip them apart. Can Shane give up racing to be with the woman he loves, or will Willa's quest to resurrect the tough-talking, no-crap-taking girl she used to be destroy any hope of a future together?

Save Me by Abigail Stone. Twenty-three year old Layla Carter has it all – at least on the surface. She's stunningly beautiful, rich, and a former child star turned Hollywood Starlet. But what lurks beneath all of that is a broken girl struggling with many different addictions. A girl that just wants to be loved. Enter Leo Marsden. President of the Disciples, a Los Angeles based biker club. He's rough, weathered, and lives on the edge. He's not at all Layla's usual type. He's not rich. He's not famous. He barely even has two dimes to rub together – but there's something about him. Something Layla can't resist... Save Me is Abigail Stone's debut romantic novel. It's dark, gritty and deliciously erotic with a twist that is sure to have you glued to your screen.

Nailed by Christine d'Abo. Hosting a new TV show is a fantasy-turned-reality for diva decorator Sophia Holbrook. But concentrating on colour swatches is hard when all she can think of is her studly co-host, contractor Fynn Babineau. These two may clash over blueprints and budgets on-screen, but with the lust palpable between them, rumour has it they have been putting more than just their heads together behind the scenes....

Beauty and the Earl by Jess Michaels. The Pleasure Wars, Book 3. Liam, the Earl of Windbury, had everything when he held his secret lover in his arms. Until a feud between their families left her dead, his body broken, and his sister married to his bitterest enemy. Wracked with guilt, simmering with rage, he's spent a year in seclusion, seeing no one except a few servants as he does his best to forget the past and patently refuses to think about any kind of future. When courtesan Violet Milford enters Liam's lair, she's on a secret mission to gather information for Liam's desperate sister, who fears for his sanity, even his life. What she finds is a man scarred inside and out, whose dark, controlling sensuality hides the kind, wounded man within. Violet awakens a sexual desire more powerful than Liam has ever known, and her stories weave a spell that begins to work its way past his defenses. But when the truth inevitably comes out, it could well destroy the love that is saving them both.

A Wanted Woman by Eric Jerome Dickey. She is a woman of a thousand faces, an assassin who could be anyone, anywhere. The Trinidad contract was supposed to be simple: to make a living man become a dead man. When the job goes bad under the watchful eye of a bank security camera, there is nowhere for agent MX-401, known as Reaper, to hide from the fearsome local warlords, the Laventille Killers. Her employers, the Barbarians, send her to Barbados, the next island over, barely two hundred miles away, with the LK's in hot pursuit of the woman who took many of their own. With the scant protection of a dank safe house, no passport, and no access to funds, an island paradise becomes her prison. While she trawls for low-profile assignments to keep her skills sharp and a few dollars in her pocket, Reaper discovers that family ties run deep, on both sides of the fight. Will the woman everyone wants, who has lived countless lives in the service of others, finally discover who she really is?

Blame it on the Bass by Lexxie Couper. Heart of Fame, Book 6. After a horrific accident robs rock legend Levi Levistan and his long-time partner, Corbin, of their dream of becoming parents, Levi is lost in a sea of grief. Until he runs into an old high school flame and their chemistry reignites. Corbin Smith is intent on bridging the chasm between their hearts. But witnessing his lover's steamy onstage kiss with a woman jolts him to the core with sexual arousal. And he realizes the key to their healing is standing in Levi's arms. As an erotic romance editor, nothing much unsettles Sonja Stone. She's not even surprised at her body's powerful reaction to Levi's kiss. But when Corbin approaches them, eyes smoldering with hunger, his suggestion shakes her to the core. Sensing their unspoken wounds, Sonja agrees to take a chance on a threesome. Their union is explosively perfect, but something is holding Levi back from sealing their searing emotional connection. Something that could destroy their love once and for all…

Guarding His Heart by Cari Quinn. Deuces Wild, Book 2. Cassidy Dixon isn't about to let her overprotective big brother know she has a stalker problem. But when she turns to his bodyguard agency partner, former MLB player Jax Wilder, she realizes she's made an even bigger mistake. Jax is even more overbearing, and soon he's getting too close for comfort—as in panty-melting close. Heat is the last thing she needs in her under-siege ice cream shop—until hot tempers explode into the best angry sex of her life. For once, the last thing on Jax's morning-after mind is escape. He's wanted Chase's little sister too long not to make a move when opportunity strikes. He knows the reasons why she lives a careful life, and he's ready to be the man she needs. If only she'd stop trying to get away… Certain Jax feels guilty for sampling forbidden, way-too-sheltered fruit, Cassidy sets out to prove that she's not as innocent and inexperienced as he thinks. She never expected him to rise to the challenge…or to be ready to risk everything to keep her safe.

Sheikh's Scandal by Lucy Monroe. Sheikh Sayed of Zeena Sarha and his harem of beautiful women are staying at the exclusive, opulent Chatsfield Hotel, London, for the last stop on his worldwide tour before his wedding. But when his engagement is unceremoniously broken, Sayed sets his sights on his sexy chambermaid! Liyah Amari only took the position as chambermaid to find the truth about her birth father. But her search ends in heartache, leaving Liyah vulnerable to this powerful sheikh's desires. Now their one night of passion could result in a scandalous consequence for the proud Sheikh! Welcome to The Chatsfield, London!

Engaging Brooke by Dara Girard. If Brooke Palmer doesn't find a husband within thirty days, she will lose her family home forever. So she turns to the only man she trusts to save her. Jameson Broward has only one true love: his vast and rugged ranch in Granger, Montana. But he understands the importance of protecting a family's legacy, so he agrees to a marriage of convenience to the woman he's cared about for years. As the stoic groom and his beautiful bride begin their businesslike union, they are confronted by the unexpected lure of their sensual and passionate chemistry. Is it possible for the sexy rancher and his pretend wife to turn their short-term arrangement into a lifetime of love?

Jedidiah's Bride by Rebecca Kertz. When handsome stranger Jedidiah Lapp saves her twin brothers' lives, Sarah Mast offers him her heartfelt thanks. And a cherry pie! But she never expects to see him again. When they meet once more at Sunday services, Sarah begins to feel something special for him. Jedidiah is eager to know the blushing beauty, and asks permission to court her. Soon, he can see Sarah as part of his future. But her family is in Delaware, his in Pennsylvania. Dare he ask her to leave all she knows behind for him and build a life in Happiness, Pennsylvania?

You're Mine Maggie by Beth Yarnall. A Maggie Mae Misadventure. Maggie Mae Castro is sure she's either losing her mind or she's fallen in love. She's not sure which would be worse. Lately she can't find anything, not her lipstick nor her grandma's pill case. All she wants is an aspirin and the ability to fire Shasta, the most useless beauty consultant to ever breathe air. When Shasta winds up dead, crushed by steel shelves full of Shy Kitty cosmetics, Maggie doesn't believe it's an accident. Things get even stranger when anonymous gifts arrive, each with the same message: "You're mine, Maggie." FBI Special Agent Clive Poole doesn't like strange men sending his girlfriend flowers and presents. He especially doesn't like the possibility that the creep might also be responsible for Shasta's death. He's sticking to Maggie day and night. Maggie is his and only his. Maggie isn't thrilled about this, especially since their last full-frontal encounter ended with her dropping her reservations and her panties. But Clive will stop at nothing to keep Maggie safe from a madman who would do anything to have her.

Navy SEAL Surrender by Angi Morgan. Navy SEAL John Sloane thought he'd come home to Texas to save the family ranch and reconnect with his estranged twin brother. He never expected to reunite with the girl whose heart he broke. But when Alicia Adams's daughter is kidnapped, the fearless SEAL jumps into action. However, the off-book op poses unfamiliar dangers to John, none more risky than his feelings for Alicia. To regain her trust and protect her from the kidnappers, he'll risk his career and even his life. It all hinges on one daring scheme that could prove he's the hero she needs or break her heart all over again.

The Widower's New Wife: Collection (Volumes 1-4) by Susette Williams. Eliza Yoder helped out during Jebediah Brenneman wife's pregnancy, and continued to help manage his household and his children after her death in childbirth. When Bishop Abram suggests that he remarry, Jebediah is upset. How can he even think of marrying someone? After two years of mourning, Jebediah realizes how much he really needs Eliza. But has she found someone closer to her own age? Jebediah hopes that he can encourage her to become a real family?

Rakes in Tartan by Suz deMello. Book three of the Highland Vampires series. The season promises both sex and danger for Torquil Kilburn and Andrew MacReiver, Highland heirs arrived in London to seek brides. The Scotsmen must negotiate the complicated morés of high society and woo and win an exquisite debutante and her passionate, unconventional mama while keeping their vampire heritage a secret. But evil stalks the ballroom at Almack's, the streets of Piccadilly, the drawing rooms of the ton. Headless bodies have been found drained of their blood. It seems that another vampire is haunting the streets of London, murdering noblemen. Tor and Andrew must fight not only for love, but for their lives.

Moonlight by Amanda Ashley. Navarre is struggling with his lifetime of solitude. Turned into a vampire long ago, he longs to meet a woman who will love him. Little does he know, she waits for him in a local bookstore. And when he finds her, he'll never let her go.

Unwed and Unrepentant by Marguerite Kaye. Burned by love and fearful of being trapped by marriage, headstrong Lady Cordelia Armstrong is furious when her father manipulates her into a betrothal with his business partner, and her one-time lover, Iain Hunter. Understanding Cordelia's reluctance, Iain proposes a pretend engagement. For now they will make believe, but there is no need to fake the attraction that still burns hotly between them. As they travel to magical Arabia, the lines between fantasy and reality blur. Will either of them really be able to walk away once their deal is done?

Get On by Regina Cole. Only Mia Bartholomew could attend a body mod convention and end up at an illegal street race, running from the boys in blue. So what's a hot-blooded Latina piercer to do? Jump on the first motorcycle out of there, that's what. She's got a career to think about, after all. Of course, that motorcycle would have to belong to a crazy-cute ex-cop with a broken heart and a burning vendetta. Garrett Long's former girlfriend was a casualty of his last case. He won't rest until he punishes her murderer, a drug-running trust-fund kid with the DA in his pocket. Garrett and Mia try to go their separate ways, but their animalistic attraction simply won't fade. And the sex? Best. Ever. Though their fiery passion really couldn't have picked a worse time to flare—Garrett's target is upping his game, leaving him with a choice. Die for revenge? Or live for Mia?

Angus (The Cursed Clan #2) by Melissa Schroeder. Even after everything the Clan has endured, Angus has always held onto his scientific leanings. That's why he doesn't understand Maggie O'Conner. Maggie walked away from the magickal heritage. When Angus bursts into her life, she tries to ignore the handsome Scot, but soon finds that she needs his protection—and his love. But just as they close in on the next jewel, a new enemy emerges and puts everything they hold dear into jeopardy.

Purrfect Romance by J.M Bronston. WANTED: Reliable house sitter to care for two pampered Park Avenue felines. Free penthouse accommodations. Sexy neighbor not included. Bridey Berrigan desperately needs a break. Her day job as a chef has taken its toll, and she's all but given up on the male species. And she can't afford any distractions—least of all her intriguing new neighbor…

A Kingdom Lost by Barbara Ann Wright. Princess Katya Nar Umbriel has little left to lose. Her uncle Roland took her home, scattered her family, and forced her to abandon Starbride, her dearest love. Slim hopes and righteous anger carry Katya into Starbride's homeland to raise an army and take back all that was stolen from her. Starbride never dreamed she'd lead a pack of foreign rebels against a Fiendish usurper. She holds the capital city out of love, denying any rumor of Katya's death. As the two strive toward each other, Roland dogs their every step, loosing Fiend-filled corpses on Katya's army and hypnotizing the capital's citizens into hunting Starbride down. If they ever meet again, it'll be over his dead body.

The Crystal Lake by L.J. LaBarthe. Sequel to The Wind-up Forest. Archangel Chronicles: Book Five. The thief of the Grail has been identified and the Brotherhood of Archangels is moving to counter her evil machinations. But as demons flock to the side of the thief and betray Hell, monsters are enslaved and shifters and an angel turn traitor. The love between Gabriel and Michael is tested as they join the rest of the Brotherhood on the trail of Naamah. Danger makes strange bedfellows in the form of Lucifer, the Archdemons, and Lilith. A traitor lurks among the angels and humans, and the Venatores are discovering vital new information. Lovers Liam, a Necromancer, and Baxter, a shifter working for Michael's Venatores unit, must face not just the living but the dead. Archangels Raziel and Uriel contend with demands on Raziel's power that wear him to the brink of exhaustion. The Brotherhood will need all their strength to prevail against the threats surrounding them.

Speakeasy by MJ Williamz. Mob boss Helen Byrne loves the new breed of women in the Roaring Twenties. She loves them every chance she gets. But when she finds herself attracted to bad girl Maria Falco, things change. Maria's boyfriend is Franco Moretti, Al Capone's right-hand man. Helen has vowed to protect the men in her gang, but her need for Maria is powerful. Is the imminent gang war worth it to her and her men? Can she convince Maria to leave the powerful Moretti for her? And if she does, how will she survive being the target of the most powerful mob in town? Maria and Helen burn hot, but so does Moretti's firepower. Helen is determined to make Maria hers and hers alone. But at what cost?

Hip Deep in Dragons by Christina Westcott. Doctor Laura Chambers considers her life well-ordered and unremarkable. She holds down multiple jobs, stashing away every extra penny for the day she can afford to open her own veterinary practice. Her idea of a pleasant evening consists of dinner at home with her cats, then turning in early with a hot new romance novel. Inviting the ruggedly handsome stranger she found asleep on her porch to join her for breakfast should have been out of the question—even if he did have gorgeous green eyes and call her Milady. With his charming brogue and courtly manners, Robert of Starhollow could be a British tourist hitch-hiking across Florida in search of a mysterious individual named Shakagwa Dun. But Laura soon learns she'll be asked to believe more than a few impossible things this morning before breakfast.

Wolf at the Door by N.J. Walters. Salvation Pack, Book 1. When Gwendolyn Jones inherits a Tennessee cabin from a great aunt she never knew, she quits her job and follows her dream to write full time. Meeting a stranger in a local cemetery isn't a risk she normally takes, but she needs the information on his flash drive for an article she's writing on werewolves. Later that night, when two honest-to-God werewolves come knocking on her cabin door, they're definitely not Photoshopped. Jacque LaForge is on a mission to retrieve a flash drive before it endangers his pack. He never thought he'd find a mate, but the chemistry between him and Gwen is unmistakably off the charts. Now to convince her he's only trying to protect her from his vengeful former pack—led by his own father. Gwen's first instinct to flee only gets her a smashed car and a concussion. She wakes up in a dangerous new world she never thought existed—and in the arms of the one man who stands between her and certain death.

Haunted Heart by Susan Laine. Duncan Kerr is the art director of Enamored Press, an erotic romance publisher based in Seattle. An open submissions call for new artists yields an imaginative book cover with rich details and bold colors that catches his interest. After a few more samples of work and some e-mails, Duncan is determined to hire the talented young artist on a permanent basis. But Ruben Winterbottom isn't an average freelance artist. His agoraphobia leaves him terrified to set foot outside his secluded house in the woods by the Olympic National Park. Living alone, fear is Ruben's sole companion. When the two men meet, Ruben has a panic attack and hides away. Although confused, Duncan sees past Ruben's anxiety to his artistic gifts and beautiful soul. So he sets out to coax the young man out of his shy shell.

Snow can't keep down the first buds of hyacinth in spring.(Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto)