Crows, Martin Short, & More
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Articles / November 17, 2019

His Perfect Partner His Perfect Partner by Priscilla Oliveras is 99c! This contemporary romance features a single dad hero and a dance teacher heroine. Sonali Dev recommended this on a previous podcast episode. She did mention that at times, the book felt more like women’s fiction with a focus on family than a romance. Three very different Latina sisters. Three dazzling talents with ambition—and passion—to burn. And in this warm-hearted, sexy new series, three chances to figure out if the path to success can also lead to lasting love . . .   Ad executive Tomás Garcia shouldn’t even be thinking about his daughter’s alluring dance teacher, Yazmine Fernandez. Burned by a shattering divorce, he’s laser-focused on his career—and giving his young daughter, Maria, the secure home she deserves. Plus, he’s certain that with her talent, Yaz will be leaving Chicago and heading back to Broadway as soon as she can. But Yaz’s generous spirit and caring concern are sparking a desire Tomás can’t resist—and doesn’t want to let go . . . For Yaz, good-looking workaholics like Tomás simply can’t be part of her life ever again. She owes it to herself to get back her confidence and fulfill the dreams…

Guest Review: Rookie Historian Goo Hae-ryung
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Articles / November 17, 2019

Rookie Historian Goo Hae-ryung by Kim Ho-soo B+ Historical: Other, Not a Book, Romance This guest review comes to us from Heather Morris! Heather Morris is a cyborg librarian living in North Carolina. She’s a Cool Aunt, a True Crime junkie, an ARMY, and an anxiety-riddled Gemini. You can find her on Twitter @NotThatHeatherM.  … I’ve recently fallen deep down the rabbit hole of K-dramas available on Netflix. I enjoy them for many of the same reasons I love romance novels. For one thing, you know from the beginning, sometimes even the end of the opening credits, who will end up together. You never have to worry about the if, it’s only a matter of how. For another, there are plenty of common tropes, and half the fun comes from watching how different shows play with formula. But there’s one drama in particular that has quickly become my favorite. To the point that, even though my to-watch list is about a mile long, I’ve already watched it twice. It’s called Rookie Historian Goo Hae-ryung, and I love it so much. It’s the early 19th century, and Goo Hae-ryung is an independent woman who can’t seem to find where she fits…

Book Beat: Romantic Suspense, Feminism, & More
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Articles / November 16, 2019

Welcome to Book Beat! Think of Book Beat as Hide Your Wallet, Part Two! In Hide Your Wallet, we talk about books coming out in a particular month that we really want to read. But there’s more to good books than just new releases! Book Beat aims to highlight other books that we may hear about through friends, social media, or other sources. We could see a gorgeous ad! Or find a new-to-us author on a list of underrated romances! Think of Book Beat as Teen Beat or Tiger Beat, but for books. And no staples to open to get the fold-out poster. A Beastly Kind of Earl Author: Mia Vincy Released: November 26, 2019 by Inner Ballad Press Genre: Historical: European, Romance Series: Right Kind of Love #2 An outcast fighting for her future… Thea Knight loves a spot of mischief. She especially loves her current mischief: masquerading as her sister, while finalizing her scheme to expose the dastardly knaves whose lies ruined her life. Then Lord Luxborough, big, bad-tempered, and scarred, upends her game by maneuvering her into marriage. But her sister’s name is on the license, so the marriage won’t be valid. Thea’s idea? Keep pretending to be her…

Podcast 377, Your Transcript Awaits!
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Articles / November 15, 2019

The transcript for Podcast 377. Finding the Story: A Conversation with Kennedy Ryan has been posted! This podcast transcript was handcrafted with meticulous skill by Garlic Knitter. Many thanks. ❤ Click here to subscribe to The Podcast →

The Bridge Kingdom by Danielle L. Jensen
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Articles / November 15, 2019

C+ The Bridge Kingdom by Danielle Jensen August 13, 2019 · CLA Science Fiction/Fantasy I keep reading books that are very hard for me to grade, because I have conflicting reactions to them. The Bridge Kingdom started out incredibly strong, but things that happened in the last 15% or so of the book soured the reading experience for me. The fact that I enjoyed the book quite a lot until that point made my disappointment even more intense. I’ve been a fan of Danielle L. Jensen since her debut novel, Stolen Songbird, which is about a beautiful songstress who is stolen away to live under a mountain with trolls and gets married to a very dreamy troll prince. I was squee-level excited when her Audible original fantasy novel for adults, The Bridge Kingdom, was released on Kindle earlier this year. (I’m not sure why, because I do like podcasts, but I don’t like audiobooks very much.) Since romance fantasy is not thick on the ground, I will Hoover up anything that even seems subgenre-adjacent. The marketing copy for this novel calls it a “fantasy romance,” but I don’t think that’s accurate. It’s definitely a fantasy novel with romantic elements as…

377. Finding the Story: A Conversation with Kennedy Ryan
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Articles / November 15, 2019

A Recorded during release week for The Kingmaker, her latest book, we are going behind the scenes with Kennedy Ryan to talk about the development of the cover art for her All the King’s Men duology, and the work the image does to represent the books inside. Ryan is also a journalist – since she was 17! – and we talk about how her experience with conducting interviews has influenced her research and her writing process. And of course, we talk about her latest books, which are releasing back to back. TW/CW: Mention of domestic violence, and the Ray Rice video, at 14:54-15:20. … Special note: Use coupon code “TRASHYBOOKS” for $10 off your first box at www.fabfitfun.com! … Music: https://www.purple-planet.com You can subscribe to Smart Podcast, Trashy Books at Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, or wherever you catch your favorite shows! Listen to the podcast → Read the transcript → Here are the books we discuss in this podcast: You can find Kennedy Ryan on her website, KennedyRyanWrites.com, and on Twitter @KennedyRWrites. We also mentioned: Cheekbone Beauty Revlon’s Black Cherry lipstick And a note from Kennedy:  One of the women I was interviewing sent a link to an article about Naelyn…

Contemporary Romance, Gothic Romance, & More
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Articles / November 14, 2019

Project Duchess Project Duchess by Sabrina Jeffries is $1.99! This historical romance is the first book in the Duke Dynasty series. I also made a cocktail for this one! Jeffries books are hit or miss for me and if memory serves me right, a Jeffries title was the first book we read for my romance book club! From New York Times bestselling author Sabrina Jeffries comes a sparkling new series about an oft-widowed mother’s grown children, who blaze through society in their quest for the truth about their fathers . . . and in the process find that love just might conquer all . . . A series of stepfathers and a difficult childhood have left Fletcher “Grey” Pryde, 5th Duke of Greycourt, with a guarded heart, enviable wealth, and the undeserved reputation of a rogue. Grey’s focus on expanding his dukedom allows him little time to find a wife. But when his mother is widowed yet again and he meets the charmingly unconventional woman managing his stepfather’s funeral, he’s shocked to discover how much they have in common. Still, Grey isn’t interested in love, no matter how pretty, or delightfully outspoken, the lady . . . Beatrice Wolfe gave up on romance long ago,…

The Rec League: More Romantic & Potentially Smutty Manga
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Articles / November 14, 2019

After Ellen’s lamenting about The Bride of the Water God and the search for a Midnight Secretary replacement, we wanted to do another Rec League. We’ve done requests in the past on webcomics, WebToons, and my very own search for something similar. But new books are being published and discovered every day. Give Ellen’s review a read and see if you have something to recommend! Susan: I’ve not read Midnight Secretary so if you want something specifically like that I can’t help, but I can definitely have a crack at romance manga recs. A | BN | K | AB Sneezy: Midnight Secretary is smutty as all fuck (or as much as you can get with published manga), with dollops of angst and crazy sauce in Vampire Flavour. There’s Discord Comics if anyone wants LGBTQ+ YA/New Adult smut. I didn’t keep up with this site after I finished the Khaos Komix story line, but I remember it as being REALLY GOOD and REALLY HOT. I remember the side stories as being more hot and heavy. Although, content warning, Khaos Komix deals with the ups and downs of being Queer, so violence and bullying are shown. So was eating disorder, childhood…

Wolf of Wessex by Matthew Harffy
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Articles / November 14, 2019

A Wolf of Wessex by Matthew Harffy May 1, 2020 · Aria Mystery/Thriller CW/TW and spoilers for plot elements Animals are hurt and killed. People are hurt and killed. The violence is coldly, graphically described. And for those who need to know about the dog specifically, Odin is hurt, presumed dead, but he makes a reappearance, back to his healthy self, towards the end of the book. I’ve just discovered my new catnip. Old soldiers protecting their adopted granddaughters as they move through the forests of southern England seeking justice. Dare I say it, they are on a QUEST! Yes, please! Welcome to the Kingdom of Wessex in Britain in the year 838. Here, we meet Duncan, a former warrior, who now lives in the woods with his one-eyed dog, Odin. He is willfully self-sufficient and months will pass before he travels into the nearby town (it’s a full day’s walk away). He’s old, has a bum knee and he misses his wife who passed away after a short and powerful bout of illness. I realise that yet another white male protagonist is a major NO THANK YOU for many in the Bitchery (understandably so) but Duncan’s fragility, grumpiness and…

Bride of the Water God by Mi-Kyung Yun
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Articles / November 14, 2019

C Bride of the Water God, Volume 1 by Mi-Kyung Yun October 30, 2007 · Dark Horse Books Manga This intrepid comics correspondent has been trying to fill the void left by Midnight Secretary (which I read thanks to this very site!) for lo these many years. I am sorry to report that Bride of the Water God does not fill that void. How hard is it to find a romance comic with beautiful art, a winning heroine, both humor and high-stakes over-the-top soap-style drama, and a surly supernatural hero with a heart of gold!? (INCREDIBLY HARD, EVERYONE. IT’S INCREDIBLY HARD.) I was drawn to Bride of the Water God, a popular Korean manhwa series, by the gorgeous art and the premise. In the first pages of Volume 1, Soah is drowned in a ritual sacrifice as the “bride of the water god” to end a drought. Instead of dying, she is transported to the water god’s magical realm. Dark and mystical-sounding, right? Well, while volume 1 was promising, I found that the following 3 volumes did not quite live up to that promise. After that point I decided to stop reading, so this review is based on the first…