February’s New Releases, Part Two

February 15, 2020

I know last Hide Your Wallet we instituted some changes. Well now we have more, thanks to the comment left by Katie C. A lot of you expressed wanting to keep the wide breadth of new releases and Katie’s suggestion was pretty great.

We’re still keeping our book maximums (five per person), but have added an extra HYW post per month, allowing another five books per person. The first HYW of the month will cover books that release from the 1st to the 14th. The second HYW will cover books released from the 15th to the end of the month.

We also think this will help us feature books from smaller publishers who don’t have buy links up as quickly as the big five.

Hope you like the new, new changes! And thanks again to this community for the feedback!

Hard Ride

Hard Ride by A.M. Arthur

Author: A.M. Arthur
Released: February 17, 2020 by Carina Press
Genre: , , ,
Series: Clean Slate Ranch #5

Five Weddings and a Fake Boyfriend

City slicker Derrick Massey has always had a thing for cowboys. So a roll in the hay with Kendall “Slater” Stamos during a rustic weekend wedding is more than A-OK. But when Slater’s forced to hang up his saddle for the season, Derrick surprises even himself with his proposition: be my fake boyfriend and get my family off my back about finding a permanent partner.

Though unexpected, the arrangement is a win-win. Derrick gets a plus-one for a slew of summer weddings and Slater gets a place to stay while he recuperates…with lots of casual fun in between. Which is just how the sexy cowboy likes it: casual. Yet it’s obvious the chemistry between them is anything but.

With the countdown to their “breakup” on, the more time the two men spend together. And the more it becomes clear that what they have could be real, if only they let it be.

Shana: This blurb sounds fun: fake engagement + cowboys

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One Last Chance

One Last Chance by Therese Beharrie

Author: Therese Beharrie
Released: February 17, 2020 by Carina Press
Genre: ,
Series: One Day to Forever #3

Of all the charity events in all of Cape Town, Zoey Roux had to bump into her husband at this one

Six years ago, Zoey Roux secretly married her best friend Sawyer. But all that did was destroy the best relationship she’s ever had. They went their separate ways, but Zoey never could go through with a divorce. Seeing him again at her sister’s charity event is a shock, but also enlightening: no matter how much she still loves him, it’s time to let him go.

Zoey was Sawyer Wilson’s first love. She broke his heart, but his feelings never died. Love was never their issue—only timing. Seeing her again is a shock: in a perfect world, she would run back into his arms. Instead, she’s asking for a divorce.

But a lot can happen in twenty-four hours: old wounds can heal, first loves can be reunited. And a second chance might just lead to happily ever after.

Maya: Lara gifted me One Day to Fall, the first book in this series, as part of the SBTB gift exchange and this one looks like a sweet, but angsty ride.

Shana: Ooh, a second chance romance set in Cape Town!

Sneezy: Looks like I’m still on catnipping on second chance romances!

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Chasing Cassandra

Chasing Cassandra by Lisa Kleypas

Author: Lisa Kleypas
Released: February 18, 2020 by Avon
Genre: ,
Series: The Ravenels #6

Everything has a price…

Railway magnate Tom Severin is wealthy and powerful enough to satisfy any desire as soon as it arises. Anything—or anyone—is his for the asking. It should be simple to find the perfect wife—and from his first glimpse of Lady Cassandra Ravenel, he’s determined to have her. But the beautiful and quick-witted Cassandra is equally determined to marry for love—the one thing he can’t give.

Everything except her…

Severin is the most compelling and attractive man Cassandra has ever met, even if his heart is frozen. But she has no interest in living in the fast-paced world of a ruthless man who always plays to win.

When a newfound enemy nearly destroys Cassandra’s reputation, Severin seizes the opportunity he’s been waiting for. As always, he gets what he wants—or does he? There’s one lesson Tom Severin has yet to learn from his new bride:

Never underestimate a Ravenel.

The chase for Cassandra’s hand may be over. But the chase for her heart has only just begun…

Catherine: I can’t resist Lisa Kleypas, and I have been waiting for Cassandra’s book.

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Of Curses and Kisses

Of Curses and Kisses by Sandhya Menon

Author: Sandhya Menon
Released: February 18, 2020 by Simon Pulse
Genre:
Series: St. Rosetta’s Academy #1

From the New York Times bestselling author of When Dimple Met Rishi comes the first novel in a brand-new series set at an elite boarding school, that’s a contemporary spin on Beauty and the Beast.

Will the princess save the beast?

For Princess Jaya Rao, nothing is more important than family. When the loathsome Emerson clan steps up their centuries-old feud to target Jaya’s little sister, nothing will keep Jaya from exacting her revenge. Then Jaya finds out she’ll be attending the same elite boarding school as Grey Emerson, and it feels like the opportunity of a lifetime. She knows what she must do: Make Grey fall in love with her and break his heart. But much to Jaya’s annoyance, Grey’s brooding demeanor and lupine blue eyes have drawn her in. There’s simply no way she and her sworn enemy could find their fairy-tale ending…right?

His Lordship Grey Emerson is a misanthrope. Thanks to an ancient curse by a Rao matriarch, Grey knows he’s doomed once he turns eighteen. Sequestered away in the mountains at St. Rosetta’s International Academy, he’s lived an isolated existence—until Jaya Rao bursts into his life, but he can’t shake the feeling that she’s hiding something. Something that might just have to do with the rose-shaped ruby pendant around her neck…

As the stars conspire to keep them apart, Jaya and Grey grapple with questions of love, loyalty, and whether it’s possible to write your own happy ending.

Aarya: I read a ridiculous number of boarding school-set YA as a teen; it’s still my favorite thing ever. Plus, Beauty and the Beast vibes!

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Quest for Redemption

Quest for Redemption by Jessie Chandler

Author: Jessie Chandler
Released: February 18, 2020 by Bella Books
Genre: ,

Placed on a medical leave of absence from the her job as an special agent in the National Protection and Investigation Unit, Mikala Flynn is a woman on the edge—guilt-ridden, depressed, battling war wounds and personal demons. The world and the relationships as she knew them no longer exist. Now, the streets of New York, the bottle, and anonymous sex have become her solace.

In the midst of a fire escape bender, Flynn overhears her crazy-like-a-fox grandmother and her art-world cronies planning a daring theft of a valuable historical document. Eventually Flynn crashes the party and agrees to take on the heist herself. Along the way, Flynn runs into, both literally and figuratively, her now wheelchair-bound best friend, an alluring, mysterious thief who throws multiple wrenches into the works, and the ex-love of her life.

Can Flynn pull off the job without falling victim to vodka and lost love…and somehow begin to find herself again along the way?

Tara: This book sounds kind of wild and I suspect it’s either going to be AMAZING or not my jam at all. I’m keeping all my fingers and toes crossed for amazing. It has an alcoholic special agent who’s on medical leave that decides to pull off the heist of a historical document that she overhears her grandmother planning with some pals. They had me at heist-planning granny with this one.

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The Wolf of Oren-Yaro

The Wolf of Oren-Yaro by K.S. Villoso

Author: K.S. Villoso
Released: February 18, 2020 by Orbit
Genre:
Series: Chronicles of the Bitch Queen #1

A queen of a divided land must unite her people, even if they hate her, even if it means stopping a ruin that she helped create. A debut epic fantasy from an exciting new voice.

“I murdered a man and made my husband leave the night before they crowned me.”

Born under the crumbling towers of Oren-yaro, Queen Talyien was the shining jewel and legacy of the bloody War of the Wolves that nearly tore her nation apart. Her upcoming marriage to the son of her father’s rival heralds peaceful days to come.

But his sudden departure before their reign begins fractures the kingdom beyond repair.

Years later, Talyien receives a message, urging her to attend a meeting across the sea. It’s meant to be an effort at reconciliation, but an assassination attempt leaves the queen stranded and desperate to survive in a dangerous land. With no idea who she can trust, she’s on her own as she struggles to fight her way home.

Ellen: It looks like this is a republication of a book that was originally self-published. Weirdly the kindle version is already available although the paperback pub date is the 18th. Nevertheless, I’m always here for more badass fantasy heroines.

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Fire & Water

Fire & Water by Alexis Hall

Author: Alexis Hall
Released: February 24, 2020 by Carina Press
Genre: ,
Series: Kate Kane, Paranormal Investigator #3

I like my whiskey like I like my women: embroiled in a magical war

Ten years ago I fought for the Witch Queen of London in a mystical showdown against a King Arthur wannabe with a shaved head and a shotgun. Back then, the law did for him before he could do for us.

I don’t think we’ll get that lucky again.

As if the mother of all wizard battles wasn’t bad enough, fate or destiny or a god with a really messed-up sense of humor has dropped a weapon that could rewrite the universe right into the middle of London, and anybody with half a sniff of arcane power has rocked up to stake their claim on it. Last time this happened, the city went to pieces. This time, it might just go to Hell.

Also, still dating a vampire. Still got an alpha werewolf trying to get in my pants. Still sharing a flat with a woman made of animated marble—only now apparently there are two of her. But you know what they say: the more things change, the more they stay the same crap that’s been trying to kill you your entire life.

Aarya: I will read any P.I. UF series without knowing anything about the premise or the author.

Catherine: I’ve only just discovered the Kate Kane stories, and I’m loving the narrator’s voice so much.

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A Cowboy to Remember

A Cowboy to Remember by Rebekah Weatherspoon

Author: Rebekah Weatherspoon
Released: February 25, 2020 by Kensington
Genre: , ,
Series: Cowboys of California #1

In this brand-new series from award-winning author Rebekah Weatherspoon, a charming cowboy and his sleeping beauty find their modern-day happily ever after . . .

With a headline spot on a hit morning show and truly mouth-watering culinary skills, chef Evie Buchanan is perched on the edge of stardom. But at an industry party, a fall lands Evie in the hospital—with no memory of who she is. Scrambling to help, Evie’s assistant contacts the only “family” Evie has left, close friends who run the luxury dude ranch in California where Evie grew up. Evie has no recollection of them—until former rodeo champion Zach Pleasant walks into her hospital room, and she realizes his handsome face has been haunting her dreams . . .

Zach hasn’t seen Evie in years—not since their families conducted a campaign to make sure their childhood friendship never turned into anything more. When the young cowboy refused to admit the feelings between them were real, Evie left California, making it clear she never wanted to see Zach again. Now he refuses to make the same mistake twice. Starting fresh is a risk when they have a history she can’t recall, but Zach can’t bear to let go of her now. Can he awaken the sleeping beauty inside her who might still love him?

Aarya: I’m not the biggest amnesia fan, but the Sleeping Beauty twist intrigues me.

Maya: Here are the reasons why I CANNOT WAIT for Rebekah Weatherspoon’s next book: (1) Xeni; (2) Rafe; (3) Haven — aka the books I’ve read of hers so far. They were all utter delights! A Cowboy to Remember has a black cowboy as the hero, a heroine with amnesia, AND it’s a second chance at love story. What more could you ask for?

Shana: I love cowboys (and cowgirls) and Rebekah Weatherspoon’s writing so this is an automatic must read.

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The Bachelor

The Bachelor by Sabrina Jeffries

Author: Sabrina Jeffries
Released: February 25, 2020 by Zebra Books
Genre: ,
Series: Duke Dynasty #2

New York Times bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries features an irresistible family in a series to savor, as the grown children of a thrice-married dowager duchess piece together the stories of their fathers–while pursuing passions of their own . . .

Lady Gwyn Drake has long protected her family’s reputation by hiding an imprudent affair from her youth. But when her former suitor appears at Armitage Hall, manhandling the heiress and threatening to go public with her secrets, it’s Gwyn who needs protecting. Her twin brother, Thorn, hires Joshua Wolfe, the estate’s gamekeeper, to keep her safe in London during her debut. As a war hero, Joshua feels obligated to fulfill the assignment he has accepted. But as a man, it’s torment to be so very close to the beauty he’s fought to ignore . . .

With handsome Joshua monitoring her every move, Gwyn would prefer to forget both the past and the parade of money-seeking bachelors at her coming out. But Joshua is unmoved by her attempts at flirtation, and the threat of blackmail still hangs over her. With danger closing in, Gwyn must decide which is the greater risk: deflecting a scoundrel’s attempts to sabotage her–or revealing her whole heart to the rugged bodyguard she can’t resist . . .

Catherine: I won’t lie, I’m not convinced about the premise for this series, but it’s Sabrina Jeffries, so I’m always going to insta-buy.

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Forbidden Promises

Forbidden Promises by Synithia Williams

Author: Synithia Williams
Released: February 25, 2020 by HQN Books
Genre: ,
Series: Jackson Falls #1

What do you do when you want the one person you can never have?

Get in and get out. That was India Robidoux’s plan for this family visit. But when her brother needs her help with his high-profile political campaign, India has no choice but to stay and face the one man she’s been running from for years—Travis, her sister’s ex-husband. One hot summer night when Travis was still free, they celebrated her birthday with whiskey and an unforgettable kiss. The memory is as strong as ever—and so are the feelings she’s tried so hard to forget.

Travis Strickland owes everything to the Robidoux family. There’s nothing he wouldn’t do for them—his divorce could never change that. Still, he has one regret. Impulsive and passionate, India always understood him better than anyone else. And the longer they work together on the campaign, the more torn he is. Coming between her and her sister is out of the question. But how can he let love pass him by a second time?

Aarya: Romance novels about a person and their sibling’s ex are always SO MESSY. Naturally, I am here for it.

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Hood Feminism

Hood Feminism by Mikki Kendall

Author: Mikki Kendall
Released: February 25, 2020 by Viking
Genre:

A potent and electrifying critique of today’s feminist movement announcing a fresh new voice in black feminism

Today’s feminist movement has a glaring blind spot, and paradoxically, it is women. Mainstream feminists rarely talk about meeting basic needs as a feminist issue, argues Mikki Kendall, but food insecurity, access to quality education, safe neighborhoods, a living wage, and medical care are all feminist issues. All too often, however, the focus is not on basic survival for the many, but on increasing privilege for the few. That feminists refuse to prioritize these issues has only exacerbated the age-old problem of both internecine discord and women who rebuff at carrying the title. Moreover, prominent white feminists broadly suffer from their own myopia with regard to how things like race, class, sexual orientation, and ability intersect with gender. How can we stand in solidarity as a movement, Kendall asks, when there is the distinct likelihood that some women are oppressing others?

In her searing collection of essays, Mikki Kendall takes aim at the legitimacy of the modern feminist movement arguing that it has chronically failed to address the needs of all but a few women. Drawing on her own experiences with hunger, violence, and hypersexualization, along with incisive commentary on politics, pop culture, the stigma of mental health, and more, Hood Feminism delivers an irrefutable indictment of a movement in flux. An unforgettable debut, Kendall has written a ferocious clarion call to all would-be feminists to live out the true mandate of the movement in thought and in deed.

Sneezy: *whips out note book and pen* I’m ready to be schooled!

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How to Love Your Elf

How to Love Your Elf by Kerrelyn Sparks

Author: Kerrelyn Sparks
Released: February 25, 2020 by Kensington
Genre: ,
Series: Embraced by Magic #1

Raised in isolation on the magic-shrouded Isle of the Moon, five girls became five sisters. Now women, they are ready to claim their places in the world—and perhaps change it forever . . .

FLAME AND FORTUNE

Sorcha knew the mission was dangerous. Leaving the safe grounds of her brother’s kingdom and parlaying with the elves across their border . . . well, treachery seemed at least as likely as true peace. But to support her sister, Sorcha would brave far more than the underhanded ways of the elves. Or so she thought, before she was taken hostage.

Of course, her captors didn’t count on her particular abilities—or on the help of the Woodsman, the mysterious thief who made his home in the forest. He saw the battle from the trees, saw the soldier attacking against incredible odds to save a comrade—and then saw the valiant fighter revealed as Princess Sorcha of Norveshka. He can’t tell if he wants to kidnap her or kiss her. But despite Sorcha’s stubbornness, his inconvenient honor, and a rebellion on the cusp of full war, something burns between them that neither can let go . . .

Ellen: This sounds like it could be either really fun or really cheesy (or both) and I am READY to find out.

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Red Hood

Red Hood by Elana Arnold

Author: Elana Arnold
Released: February 25, 2020 by Balzer + Bray
Genre: ,

You are alone in the woods, seen only by the unblinking yellow moon. Your hands are empty. You are nearly naked.

And the wolf is angry.

Since her grandmother became her caretaker when she was four years old, Bisou Martel has lived a quiet life in a little house in Seattle. She’s kept mostly to herself. She’s been good. But then comes the night of homecoming, when she finds herself running for her life over roots and between trees, a fury of claws and teeth behind her.

A wolf attacks. Bisou fights back.

A new moon rises.

And with it, questions. About the blood in Bisou’s past and on her hands as she stumbles home.

About broken boys and vicious wolves.

About girls lost in the woods—frightened, but not alone.

Amanda: I will read any and all Red Riding Hood retellings.

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The Shadows Between Us

The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller

Author: Tricia Levenseller
Released: February 25, 2020 by Feiwel & Friends
Genre: ,

Alessandra is tired of being overlooked, but she has a plan to gain power:

1) Woo the Shadow King.
2) Marry him.
3) Kill him and take his kingdom for herself.

No one knows the extent of the freshly crowned Shadow King’s power. Some say he can command the shadows that swirl around him to do his bidding. Others say they speak to him, whispering the thoughts of his enemies. Regardless, Alessandra knows what she deserves, and she’s going to do everything within her power to get it.

But Alessandra’s not the only one trying to kill the king. As attempts on his life are made, she finds herself trying to keep him alive long enough for him to make her his queen—all while struggling not to lose her heart. After all, who better for a Shadow King than a cunning, villainous queen?

Amanda: As someone who regularly reads fanfic where villains are the romantic lead, I’m all over this.

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The Sound of Stars

The Sound of Stars by Alechia Dow

Author: Alechia Dow
Released: February 25, 2020 by Inkyard Press
Genre: ,

Don’t miss this spectacular debut novel… Can a girl who risks her life for books and an alien who loves forbidden pop music work together to save humanity? This road trip is truly out of this world! A beautiful and thrilling read for fans of Marie Lu and Veronica Roth.

Two years ago, a misunderstanding between the leaders of Earth and the invading Ilori resulted in the deaths of one-third of the world’s population.

Seventeen-year-old Janelle “Ellie” Baker survives in an Ilori-controlled center in New York City. With humans deemed dangerously volatile because of their initial reaction to the invasion, emotional expression can be grounds for execution. Music, art and books are illegal, but Ellie breaks the rules by keeping a secret library. When a book goes missing, Ellie is terrified that the Ilori will track it back to her and kill her.

Born in a lab, M0Rr1S was raised to be emotionless. When he finds Ellie’s illegal library, he’s duty-bound to deliver her for execution. The trouble is, he finds himself drawn to human music and in desperate need of more. They’re both breaking the rules for the love of art—and Ellie inspires the same feelings in him that music does.

Ellie’s—and humanity’s—fate rests in the hands of an alien she should fear. M0Rr1S has a lot of secrets, but also a potential solution—thousands of miles away. The two embark on a wild and dangerous road trip with a bag of books and their favorite albums, all the while creating a story and a song of their own that just might save them both.

Maya: Y’all. Teen girl with a secret, illegal library. An alien who loves (illegal) pop music. They go on the run together! Will their shared love of suppressed art foster some kind of love between them? Let’s find out together!

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Too Much

Too Much by Rachel Vorona Cote

Author: Rachel Vorona Cote
Released: February 25, 2020 by Grand Central Publishing
Genre:

Lacing cultural criticism, Victorian literature, and storytelling together, TOO MUCH explores how culture corsets women’s bodies, souls, and sexualities–and how we might finally undo the strings.

A weeping woman is a monster. So too is a fat woman, a horny woman, a woman shrieking with laughter. Women who are one or more of these things have heard, or perhaps simply intuited, that we are repugnantly excessive, that we have taken illicit liberties to feel or fuck or eat with abandon. After bellowing like a barn animal in orgasm, hoovering a plate of mashed potatoes, or spraying out spit in the heat of expostulation, we’ve flinched-ugh, that was so gross. I am so gross. On rare occasions, we might revel in our excess–belting out anthems with our friends over karaoke, perhaps–but in the company of less sympathetic souls, our uncertainty always returns. A woman who is Too Much is a woman who reacts to the world with ardent intensity is a woman familiar to lashes of shame and disapproval, from within as well as without.

Written in the tradition of Shrill, Dead Girls, Sex Object and other frank books about the female gaze, TOO MUCH encourages women to reconsider the beauty of their excesses-emotional, physical, and spiritual. Rachel Vorona Cote braids cultural criticism, theory, and storytelling together in her exploration of how culture grinds away our bodies, souls, and sexualities, forcing us into smaller lives than we desire. An erstwhile Victorian scholar, she sees many parallels between that era’s fixation on women’s “hysterical” behavior and our modern policing of the same; in the space of her writing, you’re as likely to encounter Jane Eyre and Lizzy Bennet as you are Britney Spears and Tori Amos. This book will tell the story of how women, from then and now, have learned to draw power from their reservoirs of feeling, all that makes us “Too Much.”

Aarya: *Looks at title and runs to one-click without investigating any further.*

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We Unleash the Merciless Storm

We Unleash the Merciless Storm by Tehlor Kay Mejia

Author: Tehlor Kay Mejia
Released: February 25, 2020 by Katherine Tegen Books
Genre: , ,
Series: We Set the Dark on Fire #2

In this nail-biting sequel to Tehlor Kay Mejia’s critically acclaimed fantasy novel We Set the Dark on Fire, La Voz operative Carmen is forced to choose between the girl she loves and the success of the rebellion she’s devoted her life to.

Being a part of the resistance group La Voz is an act of devotion and desperation. On the other side of Medio’s border wall, the oppressed class fights for freedom and liberty, sacrificing what little they have to become defenders of the cause.

Carmen Santos is one of La Voz’s best soldiers, taken in when she was an orphaned child and trained to be a cunning spy. She spent years undercover at the Medio School for Girls, but now, with her identity exposed and the island on the brink of civil war, Carmen returns to the only real home she’s ever known: La Voz’s headquarters.

There she must reckon with her beloved leader, who is under the influence of an aggressive new recruit, and with the devastating news that her true love might be the target of an assassination plot. Will Carmen break with her community and save the girl who stole her heart—or fully embrace the ruthless rebel she was always meant to be?

Elyse: I loved the first book in this series. It’s got f/f romance, political intrigue, and plenty of action.

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Wild, Wild Rake

Wild, Wild Rake by Janna MacGregor

Author: Janna MacGregor
Released: February 25, 2020 by St. Martin’s Paperbacks
Genre: ,
Series: The Cavensham Heiresses #6

Her first marriage was an epic failure.

Lady Avalon Warwyck never did love her husband. Arrogant, selfish, and cruel, it’s a blessing when she’s widowed and left to raise her son all by herself. Finally, Avalon can live freely and do the work she loves: helping fallen women become businesswomen. She’s lived these past ten years with no desire to remarry―that is, until Mr. Devan Farris comes to town.

Can he convince her to take another chance at happily ever after?

Devan Farris―charming vicar, reputed rake, and the brother of Avalon’s son’s guardian―is reluctantly sent to town to keep tabs on Avalon and her son. Devan wishes he didn’t have to meddle in her affairs; he’s not one to trod on a woman’s independent nature and keen sense of convictions. But she’ll have nothing to do with vicar with a wild reputation―even though he’s never given his heart and body to another. If only he could find a way to show Avalon who he really is on the inside―a good, true soul looking for its other half. But how can prove that he wants to love and care for her. . .until death do they part?

Elyse: The heroine of this book helps fallen women become businesswomen and the hero is a vicar.

Ellen: I am unclear on how a vicar can be a rake but I’m excited to learn about it! I feel like the blurb is hinting that he might actually be a virgin, too?

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