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Archive for January, 2014

Postcard winners!

Winners of Melting the Ice postcards signed by Jason are:

Janice McCarthy

Lisa Williams

elena k

Natasha Haman

Alexis

Wanda Miller

Kelly

Maria Rincon

Natalija

savy

Robyn B

Rolanda

Meagan Wells

Ashley Lake

Chels Newall

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Congrats! To claim your prize, please email mad @ romancereaderatheart.com (without the spaces) with your mailing address. You have 48 hours to email before a new name is chosen.

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Cover model Jason Vendryes has helped us out again and we have 15 signed postcards for Melting the Ice by Jaci Burton to give away! If you would like one, just leave a comment below and we’ll draw the winners on Sunday.

Melting the Ice comes out on February 4, 2014 and you can read more about it here.

And, in case you missed it before, we have an interview with Jason here.

This giveaway is open to all. Good luck!

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Winner!

Sonja Rouillard

wins Personal Assets by Kelsey Browning

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Congrats! To claim your prize, please email mad @ romancereaderatheart.com (without the spaces). You have 48 hours to email before a new name is chosen.

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Running the Red Light CoverAfter wearing a “Least Likely to Succeed” label all her life, Roxanne Eberly is hell-bent on making her Red Light Lingerie store successful. Although the residents of small-town Shelbyville, Texas, are a little…lingerie-resistant, she’ll win them over eventually. So when a former employer sues her, putting a major wrinkle in her careful plans, she reluctantly accepts help from hot-stuff Houston attorney Jamie Wright.

Jamie’s on track to become his firm’s youngest partner, but discovers an unwritten prerequisite—marriage. Turns out, the only woman he wants is Roxanne, but peddling thongs and sex toys isn’t a suitable career for the spouse of an up-and-coming attorney.

Jamie’s tangled up in Roxanne’s lawsuit, her life and her lingerie. But if they’re ever going to make it work, Roxanne’s big-city boy will have to decide what he values more: the career he always thought he wanted or the woman he never thought he’d fall for.

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EXCERPT

“You know, the only thing Ashton Davenport has ever kept an interest in for more than fifteen minutes is a French manicure,” Roxanne said. “She’s probably already forgotten she sued me.”

“I can guarantee her lawyer hasn’t let it slip his mind.” He shifted the car into gear, pulled away from the curb and focused on the road in front of him instead of the woman beside him. “An attorney never forgets anything with the potential for billable hours. Granted, most noncompete agreements aren’t worth the paper they’re written on, but Texas judges have become a lot more aggressive in enforcing them in the past few years.”

“But I told you yesterday, I’m not competing with her.”

He glanced over at her. “Any of your customers drive from Houston?”

A line formed between her brows. “Of course.”

“Then you’re competing with her.”

“Oh, God.”

“Hey, everything will probably be fine. Once I get my hands on the actual agreement you signed when you worked for her, I’ll have a better idea if we can tiptoe right through this mess or if we’ll need a pair of hip waders instead.”

“We? Jamie, I can’t afford an attorney.” She fingered the sleeve of his pinpoint shirt and gave his dark suit pants and burgundy pin-dot tie the once-over. “I’m pretty sure your rates are too rich for my blood. I just wanted to talk with you. I didn’t expect you to take this on.”

“Maybe we can knock this out and you won’t have to worry about it.” Not only were they already tangled in one business relationship, he was already sloshing around in another. He’d never imagined that loaning money to Allie, and in turn Roxanne, would have sucked him into yet another hometown situation. Why the hell did he feel responsible for the woman sitting beside him wearing her perfectly applied made-to-sin bronze lipstick?

Because she had the same kind of drive he did. And damned if he didn’t admire her for it.

Amazon: http://tinyurl.com/mjedsd7

Barnes & Noble: http://tinyurl.com/k4t3x9j

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Kelsey Browning - HeadshotKelsey Browning writes sass kickin’ love stories and cozy Southern mysteries. Originally from a Texas town smaller than the ones she writes about, Kelsey has also lived in the Middle East and Los Angeles, proving she’s either adventurous or downright nuts. These days, she hangs out in northeast Georgia with Tech Guy, Smarty Boy, Bad Dog and Pharaoh, a Canine Companions for Independence puppy. She’s currently at work on the next book in her Texas Nights series and The Granny Series. Give her a shout at Kelsey@KelseyBrowning.com or drop by www.KelseyBrowning.com. For info on her upcoming releases, subscribe to her Sass Kickin’ News.

 

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For a chance to win a digital copy of Personal Assets (Book 1 in the Texas Nights Series) by Kelsey Browning, just leave a comment below. Good luck!

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Lori T

wins digital copies of both Dimple books by Lucy Woodhull

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Congrats! To claim your prize, please email mad @ romancereaderatheart.com (without the spaces). You have 48 hours to email before a new name is chosen.

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First I must say thank you to Bree and TV tropes. Without Bree this post would have been titled The Kinda Sorta Bad Guy With The Soft Underbelly. The current title is so much better 😀

Many of my favorite books have fantastic ensemble casts and not just throw-away secondary characters that are only there to prop up the protagonist. And my favorite type of character in that ensemble is the Even Evil Has Loved Ones. These are not good guys. Not even close. Some of their actions are nothing short of evil. But they have a soft spot, a vulnerability. And we as readers only get to see that vulnerability when it comes to that one special person.

My favorite non-protagonist character right now is Theo from Lauren Dane’s Rowan Summerwaite series. He is The First, a centuries-old vampire, the leader of the Vampire Nation, and is, at times, bat-shit crazy. Even at his most sane, the choices he goddesswithablademakes are cold, violent, and what many would consider horrible. And he is Rowan’s foster father. He has raised her since she was an infant and she is the daughter of his heart. Yet some of his treatment toward her during childhood is beyond a doubt horrendous. But as this series progresses we see the love he has for Rowan. He is softer with her, more human, though she still has to be careful when dealing with this ancient being.

Without giving spoilers, I can only say we see why Rowan had the childhood she did with Theo. It wasn’t evilness or madness. It was done with Rowan’s best interests at heart. It was still horrible, it doesn’t change Rowan’s nightmares, but that glimpse into this complex character is wonderful. Regardless of his past actions, and current actions with others, Theo’s love for Rowan is true. And it leaves her with a very real terror of what will happen to the world should something happen to her. Her love is the only leash for a being that could drown the world in blood.

Another author who excels at writing the Even Evil Has Loved Ones characters is Nalini Singh. SlavetoSensationWhen we first met Nikita Duncan in Slave to Sensation, she was a stone-cold killer with no conscience. Whatever kept Nikita at the top was all that mattered and anything or anyone that got in her way was disposable. Or so it seemed. The more we see of Nikita, the more we realize she has layers and somewhere in that icy heart is a soft spot for her only child. She’s still a bitch. She may still do horrible things but she will defend that soft spot with a viciousness that is frightening.

Singh’s The Ghost (trying to avoid spoilers!) is a character that kisses the line between Even Evil Has Loved Ones and the Anti-Hero. Like the previously mentioned characters, he’s done some bad, bad things. And he did them without remorse. Unlike the previous characters, he has found his HEA and that heroine, and only that heroine, pushed him out of the “evil” category into the anti-hero one. His actions are no longer dictated by what’s best for him but what’s best for his lady.

These are the characters I love. Their complexity draws me in and keeps me fully engaged. I want to hate them, I should hate them and fear what they will do to the fictional world I’m visiting, but they add so much to that world. And I want to read more of them.

What about you? Do you enjoy these type of characters? And can you recommend any books with them? I can’t recall finding any outside of paranormal romance or urban fantasy but I would love to read them

 

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Winners of After the Storm by Maya Banks!

Stephanie Fredrick

Mandy Saial

miki

Jessi Fay

Claire Brianna MacKanzie

Joye

Cindy Mucha Barton

Ruth S

michelle

yohanna baez

Eileen

gigi staub

Marina Marinova

cahmmerritt

Melanie J

Janet K

azteclady

Casey

Kim

Alison Bliss

Congratulations! All winners have been emailed and have 24 hours to respond before a new winner is selected.

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