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THE MINDY PROJECT, Episode 3

We start with Mindy declaring that one of the best things about being a new couple is that you’re so in sync you start thinking alike. For example, when Danny asks Mindy what she’d like to do that evening: Danny would like Thai food, but Mindy would like to have sex on the washing machine. Which of course leads to Danny wanting to have sex on the washing machine. See? Same mind. The only hiccup is that while Mindy thinks now would be a great time for her to start leaving some of her things at Danny’s apartment, Danny would rather she carry all her things back and forth like she’s homeless. Mindy tries leaving a small bag of items [...]

#HunkDay: Morning Coffee

If you haven’t had your morning cup of coffee yet, never fear–we’ve got the steamiest hunks to give you a jolt of energy. Today is #HunkDay: Morning Coffee, because sometimes we all need a side of hottie with our coffee. As a coffee addict, I can’t think of anything better than a long, relaxing morning with any of these hunks! Who’s your favorite of these caffeinated hunks?    1. Just out of the shower, drinking what looks like it might be espresso. Heavenly.      2. Hunk: Dreamy. Coffee: Steamy.      3. The shadows in this picture perfectly highlight those amazing arms, but they don’t do much for showing the abs. Just I’ll have to use my imagination…   [...]

ECHOES OF SCOTLAND STREET by Samantha Young

All hail the return of The Tribe! With ECHOES OF SCOTLAND STREET, the fifth installment in the On Dublin Street series by Samantha Young, the loving family of characters that she has created is back, and this time, it’s time for Cole Walker’s story to be told. At the age of fifteen, Cole had a brief encounter with a petite redhead outside her grandmother’s house in Edinburgh. They bonded over a favorite rock band, and a spark was ignited between them (this meet cute is actually referred to in one of the previous ODS books-Ms. Young, you are so sneaky!). But it won’t be until nine years later when Cole meets the mystery girl again. Shannon MacLeod is the new [...]

SONS OF ANARCHY, Season 7, Episode 4

This week’s episode, titled Poor Little Lambs, was quite an enlightening experience. I think we are getting down to the heart of it all. What the previous episodes have proven, as well as this one, is that it’s anyone’s game and anything is possible. So start your engines: the final ride continues. The episode opens with Jax in a deep conversation with the white supremacist (Marilyn Manson) in prison. Gemma drops Abel at school where his teacher (Courtney Love) is waiting. Gemma is driving her car speaking to Tara, who is obviously not there. She may be losing a few screws. Juice answers the door at the motel when Wendy and Unser show up. They decide to keep an eye on him. [...]

SWEETER THAN SIN (Secrets & Shadows #2) by Shiloh Walker

SWEETER THAN SIN is the story of Adam and Lana, friends from childhood that have held each other’s secrets sacred for years even though it has torn them apart. SWEETER THAN SIN is also the continuation of a much bigger story in the small town of Madison. It should be noted that the Secrets & Shadows series deals with a very dark and deeply disturbing subject matter. I say that as a heads up more than a warning. While the bigger picture is explained, the gruesome details are mostly left to our imagination. The town of Madison is in the throes of sorting out a child molestation group whose existence is finally coming to light. Cronus Club is a group [...]

SLEEPY HOLLOW, Episode 2

(Note: first, I would like to issue an apology for not mentioning the confusingly hot alabaster hunk of beef that was Headless without a shirt. Honestly, he seemed so comfortable, just a headless man relaxing without the constrictions of a shirt or an axe, that I let it slide.) This episode has a slower pace than the season opener, and thank goodness for that. We need a moment to re-center ourselves in a post-Purgatory Sleepy Hollow. A lot still happens, though, because slow is a relative term in Sleepy Hollow. The show opens with headless dragging Katrina to a fiery circle where she is manacled and a creepy Henry presides over the joining of their blood, which would sanctify the [...]

Talking AN AMERICAN DUCHESS with Sharon Page

Today Sharon Page talks to R@R’s Julia Tagan about her novel AN AMERICAN DUCHESS, which publishes today. The story opens in 1922, and New York heiress Zoe Gifford longs for the freedoms promised by the Jazz Age. Headstrong and brazen, but bound by her father’s will to marry before she can access his fortune, Zoe arranges for a brief marriage to Sebastian Hazelton, whose aristocratic British family sorely needs a benefactor.  Once in England, her foolproof plan to wed, inherit and divorce proves more complicated than Zoe had anticipated. RR: Tell us a little about your inspiration for the character of Zoe; she’s a catalyst for change in so many ways. SP: My first idea was to write a romance with [...]

Marriage of Convenience: Making a Classic Trope Modern

Molly O’Keefe, 2014 RITA Award winner, talks about the Marriage of Convenience trope—and why it’s hard to write in contemporary times, but how authors are able to make a classic plot line fresh and modern.   I love a good secret baby book, and don’t get me started on revenge plots, but my favorite—my very favorite romance plot line—is Marriage of Convenience. For those of you who might not have dipped your toe into this kind of story: basically, what happens is that two people agree to get married, or better yet have to get married for some practical or manipulative or dangerous reason, but the hero and heroine don’t like each other. Or better yet hate each other. Or [...]

Music and Emotion: The Magic of Playlists

Today Rhonda Helms is here to talk about the relationship between music and emotional connection – between characters, and between writers and their work, and readers and the books they read. Her new novel, SCRATCH, features a DJ heroine. The SCRATCH playlist has multiple layers; it shows pieces of Casey’s DJing job (like the upbeat electronic or dubstep songs she might play at the club). It shows her own personal playlist (more emotional pieces that reflect her feelings during particular spots in the story, when she has her earbuds in between classes, etc). It also shows some of Daniel too, the songs that make him think of her. A true “mix tape” that reflects many different pieces of the whole [...]

WITCHES OF THE EAST END, Episode 11

This episode lands us in 1848 Baltimore. Joanna, Wendy and Freya are looking for a very powerful weapon that will destroy dear old dad. Present day Joanna, Wendy and Freya have twelve hours to locate this weapon while avoiding bumping into their 1848 selves. During this jaunt back in time we are able to see Wendy and Joanna in very different roles. 1848 Joanna is upset over Victor leaving her and has decided to drown her sorrow in heroin. She’s basically a useless addict who leaves Wendy to run the brothel the sisters own. Freya and Ingrid work at the bar/brothel as well, reading tarot cards. Wendy is the level headed, take-charge sister in this era. While working in the [...]

Cover Reveal: FINISHED by Claire Kent

For the last year, Julia has lived with two men. Drayton is hot and mysterious, and Mike takes care of her. Together, they have great sex and a mostly stable relationship—one Julia thought satisfied her. After all, how can she complain about having two sexy men at the same time? Then everything starts to change. Drayton is keeping a dark secret that threatens more than their arrangement. It might actually threaten their lives. And Mike keeps becoming more alpha than she’s ever known him to be. What once was fun and casual is now a tangle of conflicting desires. Drayton wants to keep his freedom. Julia wants a real commitment. And Mike…well, Mike just wants her.   Claire Kent has [...]

MASTERS OF SEX, Season Finale

Kennedy’s presidential campaign and inauguration was the backdrop to this week’s finale. It ushered in change as relationships evolved and this season ended. Six weeks have passed since the last episode. Over time, Masters and Virginia have observed what has and hasn’t worked to help Bill’s impotence. A succession of nights devoted to non-sexual touching, touching genitals but no sex, and finally sexual intercourse may have cured Masters’ sexual dysfunction. After Masters discusses the idea that he and Virginia may have cured impotence, Bill dreams he is thrown a ticker tape parade. He gets into a car with Virginia as they are hailed for their success, but the car suddenly stops when Libby appears in the middle of the road. [...]

Books To Buy: New Releases September 29

This week we have a holiday love story (yes, it’s about that time of year already!); a return to Lucky Harbor; an irresistible pool shark; some geek love, a Prohibition-era marriage of inconvenience, and more.

STIRRING UP TROUBLE by Kimberly Kincaid

Looking for inspiration… Sloane Russo’s turned a decade of crazy jobs and whimsical travel into a career writing steamy novels set in exotic places. Trouble is, Sloane’s flat broke now—and she can’t channel sun-drenched beaches in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The only fast cash in town comes with some seriously distracting temptation: Gavin Carmichael, hot, handsome and oh-so-hard-headed. Gavin isn’t the impulsive Don Juan of Sloane’s novels. He’s raising his thirteen-year-old half-sister, and he’s pretty sure he’s supposed to act like he’s never heard of fun. Sloane is way too sexy and irresponsible to be his idea of a good tutor for Bree, but the unpredictable anti-nanny may be irresistible as well. I have a couple of Kincaid’s books sitting [...]

Sara’s Picks: Best of September

Hiya all, this is Sara @HarlequinJunkie, stopping by to share with you some of our favorite September releases. We’ve been reading up a storm on the blog and this month handed us some great reads! These are some stand-outs that are not to be missed.  

HOW TO GET AWAY WITH MURDER, Series Premiere

It’s no exaggeration to say that How to Get Away with Murder has been one of the most anticipated — not to mention heavily promoted — new series for fall 2014.  The city has been littered with billboards of Viola Davis looking fierce in her red leather jacket.  It was given the coveted 10 PM slot after two other series created by Shonda Rhimes, Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal,  creating a powerhouse line-up. Although How to Get Away with Murder was created by Peter Nowak, the show features a strong female lead, twisty plotting, and rapid pace-dialogue, all features we’ve come to know and love from Shonda Rhimes. So did the show live up to the hype? The episode started with [...]

SCANDAL, Season 4 Premiere

All summer we were teased by #WhereInTheWorldIsOliviaPope splashed across beach blimps and, of course, the pop culture terrain of cyberspace.  Not since Dallas’s legendary “Who Shot JR” cliffhanger has a series kept TV viewers in such a hot and bothered state of anticipation. At the close of Scandal’s season three, DC powerhouse crisis manager, Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington), weary and dispirited from her on-again off-again affair with married lover, President Fitzgerald Grant—Fitz as played by Tony Goldwyn—as well as the omnipresent machinations of her terrorist mother and B613 director father (think CIA but off-book and on steroids) flies off to parts unknown with lover, Jake Ballard (Scott Foley), the Navy captain turned B613 operative and, later, its director. Repeatedly Jake [...]

BURYING WATER by K.A. Tucker

The top-selling, beloved indie author of Ten Tiny Breaths returns with a new romance about a young woman who loses her memory—and the man who knows that the only way to protect her is to stay away. Left for dead in the fields of rural Oregon, a young woman defies all odds and survives—but she awakens with no idea who she is, or what happened to her. Refusing to answer to “Jane Doe” for another day, the woman renames herself “Water” for the tiny, hidden marking on her body—the only clue to her past. Taken in by old Ginny Fitzgerald, a crotchety but kind lady living on a nearby horse farm, Water slowly begins building a new life. But as she attempts [...]

Club Hopping: Jamie K. Schmidt’s Favorite Clubs

Summer is over and it’s back to the routine of school and autumn days.  I can look back fondly at all the beach parties and cook outs with friends and family.  Thankfully, there will always be night clubs that let us have some rowdy fun indoors once the weather turns chilly.  Here are some of my favorite bars and clubs: The Adventurer’s Club – Downtown Disney, Orlando FL. Unfortunately, this club closed in 2008 and lives on only in my memory.  But I remember with glee sitting on the bar stool that veeeeery slowly lowered and raised and drinking rum punch from a plastic monkey’s head.  Congaloosh! 2.  Minus 5° Ice Bar – Las Vegas, NV The temperature is set [...]

From Contemporary to Erotic Romance: One Writer’s Journey

Hi. I’m Carly Phillips and I’m best known for writing small town romance. Hot small town romance with emotional connections between the characters and a connected journey to the hero and heroine’s happily ever after. Now I also write erotic romance.  There. I said it. I’ve been skirting the actual line in interviews and descriptions of my work but with DARE TO SUBMIT, there’s no doubt. I went there. For many people (I think my own mother included), the question is why. Why change things? What people don’t realize is that this was not an overnight change. I started out in publishing in 1999 with Brazen, my first Harlequin Temptation BLAZE, their hottest line. I went on to write a [...]

THE MINDY PROJECT, Season 3, Episode 2

Mindy and Danny are having breakfast at his apartment. Mindy is recounting her dream from the night before about her jungle lover when Danny’s mom (Rhea Perlman, who played Carla on Cheers!) knocks at the door. Danny’s obviously uncomfortable with the situation. Mindy doesn’t pick up on any of the weirdness and introduces herself to Mrs. Castellano. Danny has never mentioned Mindy to his mom so Mrs. Castellano has no idea who Mindy is. In fact, Mrs. Castellano thinks Mindy is his cleaning lady and would like to know Mindy’s rates. Mindy still has no idea what’s going on and rates herself as an 8 in New York, a 10 in Chicago and a 4 in L.A. When Mrs. Castellano [...]

Talking MADE FOR YOU with Melissa Marr

I’ve been a fan of Melissa Marr ever since she pulled me into the faery realm with her star-crossed love story debut WICKED LOVELY. This month, she publishes the romantic suspense novel MADE FOR YOU, and talks to us about her latest inspiration. RR: Made for You is your first novel that’s “grounded” YA – not set in a fantasy world. What inspired this story? How was the experience of setting your characters in the “real” world different, if at all? When I was in my 20s, I had a stalker.  He wasn’t someone I’d known or dated or had any contact with prior to his fixation on me. That feeling of helplessness and wondering “why me? how did he [...]

#HunkDay: Men of Primetime

Happy #HunkDay! Get your DVRs ready…today’s hunk day theme is “Men of Primetime”…and after looking at these leading men you are definitely going to want to add their shows to your weekly schedule. They play cops and bad guys, men who love witches and men who love drugs and riches, but they’re all sexy in their own way. We’ve picked five to feature here but there will be more hotties popping up on our Romance at Random Facebook and Twitter and our Loveswept Pinterest page. Tell us: who is your favorite man of primetime? Any new TV crushes this fall? 1. Daniel Di Tomassio from Witches of the East End. I propose a petition asking for him to be shirtless in every episode. Who’s with me!?   [...]

SONS OF ANARCHY, Season 7, Episode 3

This week’s episode, “Playing With Monsters,” was perfectly titled — and one you won’t be able to forget.  Some crucial events unfolded; It’s very important to keep up because the final ride is in full throttle. We begin with the boys of sons watching a porn being filmed in their studio. Lila’s first take since she quit the business, I assume. (One of the actresses is played by real porn star Jemma Jamison.) Unser is in a deep conversation with Juice, seems that Juice needs a favor, but Unser will only help him if he points him to Tara’s killer. We find Gemma and Nero packing him up.  Gemma asks Nero if he and Jax are alright and Nero tells [...]

THE UNEXPECTED HONEYMOON by Barbara Wallace

Widower Carlos Chavez manages La Joya del Mayan, the most romantic resort in Mexico. On good days, the romance passes unnoticed; on dark days, it only reminds him of his loss.  But the honeymoon suite’s latest guest, Larissa Boyd, has rocked his steadfastness. Stunningly beautiful, she seems lost. And no wonder…she’s on a honeymoon for one! The chemistry is instant – and their similarities run deep. Could it be that the two loneliest hearts on the island have found love…in the most unexpected of places? Sometimes, I am in the mood for a short and sweet romance that I can read in one sitting.  THE UNEXPECTED HONEYMOON was just the thing to fit.  It is a very sweet story about two [...]

SLEEPY HOLLOW, Season Two Premiere

When last we left the Sleepy Hollow gang: Abbie was trapped in Purgatory; Jenny was bleeding out in an overturned car; Captain Irving had turned himself in for murders he didn’t commit; Henry had revealed himself to be the second Horseman of the Apocalypse, War, as well as Ichabod and Katrina’s long lost son; and Ichabod had been wrapped in vines, stuck in a wooden box, and buried alive. Oh, and Katrina has been carted off by her creepy ex, the Headless Horseman. Given that, this episode starts off with a disorienting, banal intro. Although Ichabod’s initial “Leftenant” firmly reminds us of the relationship they built in the previous season, instead of fighting demons, Abbie is holding a cupcake and [...]

Talking JULIET’S NURSE with Lois Leveen

Today author Lois Leveen talks with R@R about her novel JULIET’S NURSE, a re-telling of Romeo and Juliet told from the perspective of Juliet’s nurse. RR:  Where did the idea of retelling the story from the point of view of Juliet’s nursemaid – one of Shakespeare’s bawdiest and most beloved characters – come from?  I was actually working on another book, or trying to – it just wasn’t coming together – and the title Juliet’s Nurse came smack into my head, totally out of the blue.  I thought, wow, what a great idea, surely someone else has already written that novel.  Or maybe it’s a movie?  So I checked:  no book, no film.  I pulled my copy of Romeo and [...]

WITCHES OF EAST END, Episode 10

After last week’s bombshell ending, this week’s events were far easier on my emotions and my wine/ice cream intake. Of course we start off with the hanging girls and that’s terrible enough but Joanna’s grieving and Wendy trying to be her rock is a double whammy of sad. I mean, Joanna is at such a loss, she tries to kill herself in the bathtub. She would’ve succeeded had Wendy not stepped in and saved the day. Joanna and Wendy did a remarkable job pulling us into the grief and helplessness of the situation. Add in Killian’s reaction when he barges in and finds Freya all displayed and prepared for burial and well, it’ll give you the feels, all of them. [...]

MASTERS OF SEX, Episode 11

This was one of my favorite episodes yet. We watched everyone struggle with how people see then versus how they want to be seen. Masters and Virginia are once again at the hotel. Virginia asks if Bill has talked to his brother since the fight. Masters’ brother left town after their argument but Bill wants to contact with him to make things better. Yeah right, I’ll believe it when I see it. Masters and Virginia talk about the last time they had sex since it was the last time Bill was able to get it up. Masters wants Virginia to tell him how it felt; he palms his erection, trying to get hard to her mild dirty talk. The camera [...]

Talking LOVE ON THE BOARDWALK with Christi Barth

Author Christi Barth stops by to talk about her latest, LOVE ON THE BOARDWALK: Atlantic City is the perfect place for detective Bradley Hudson to nurse his broken heart. A week of beer and strippers is sure to erase his former fiancée from his memory for good. What he didn’t count on was running into a sassy redhead from his past. Maybe a rebound romp is an even better plan.Trina Trimble, private eye in training, is thrilled to be reunited with the hottie she almost hooked up with last summer. She’s undercover on her first solo case, but there’s always time to lock lips with a sexy cop. Besides, a fun fling with Brad doesn’t have to last beyond his [...]