Winter 2015’s Must-Read Romances: Naughty and Nice Reads

Winter 2015’s Must-Read Romances: Naughty and Nice Reads

‘Tis the season for updating your wish list, and we’ve got ten new romance novels that you won’t want to miss. We have great titles on our nice list: a sweet romance inspired by two Shakespearian lovers, and a proposal from Kristan Higgins. And we’ve got equally amazing picks on our naughty list: Eloisa James is cooking up a scandalous historical tale, while C.S. Pacat finishes her Captive Prince trilogy. So make your list, check it twice, and then get reading.


I’ll Be There

Cause you’re there for me too

The latest installment in the Montgomery Brothers series focuses on Zach. He’s going through a rough patch after a mountain-climbing accident. Zach likes being in control, and having to rely on others to help get him back on his feet is something he’s not comfortable with. He wants his family and friends to see him at the top of his game, not broken and beaten down. Zach especially doesn’t want his assistant Gabriella seeing him this way. He’s had feelings for her for years, though she’s never seemed to return them. All that could change, though, if he would just open up and let her in. Longtime fans of this series will love the cameos from other members of the Montgomery clan, while new readers can seamlessly enter this world and enjoy the romance.

On shelves: December 1

Secret Sisters

You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave

New York Times bestselling author Jayne Ann Krentz knows how to thrill her readers, and her latest romantic suspense is another page-turning read. Madeline was 12 years old when she was attacked at her grandmother’s hotel. Her grandmother took her away to Arizona, but a murder brings Madeline back to Washington state. The hotel’s caretaker has just been killed, and Madeline fears that the man who attacked her as a child is coming back to finish the job. She must confront her long-lost childhood friend Daphne, as well as secrets from her own past, if she hopes to survive. She asks Jack Rayner, head of hotel security and a former FBI consultant, to help her investigate. There’s undeniable attraction between them, and as their sexual tension rises, it becomes more and more imperative for them to catch the killer before he strikes again.

On shelves: December 8

Beatrice and Benedick

I do love nothing in this world so well as you

Readers familiar with William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing will have spotted the hints that the characters of Beatrice and Benedick had a past love affair that went awry. This novel is a prequel of sorts that explores exactly how the two lovers met, what tore them apart, and how they found each other again. Told in alternating points of view, Beatrice and Benedick each get to tell their side of the story. Beatrice shares how she is brought to live at her uncle’s court in Sicily. Benedick tells readers about his visit to the island with a Spanish lord and the first time he laid his eyes on Beatrice. Arranged marriages, witty banter, and plenty of allusions to other works from the Bard make this a fun and romantic read.

On shelves: December 8

The Rogue Not Taken

Close quarters

Sarah MacLean kicks off her Scandal & Scoundrel series with the romance of Sophie Talbot and Kingscote, Marquess of Eversley. Sophie, the daughter of a coal miner turned earl, resents her family’s newly elevated status. Her sisters love causing drama and scandal wherever they go, while Sophie hates feeling as though they don’t truly fit in with the aristocracy. After shoving her sister’s philandering husband into a fish pond at a party, Sophie decides to leave society and never come back. She picks the wrong carriage to stow away in though, and ends up face-to-face with Kingscote, who believes that she’s there to trick him into marrying her. Verbal sparring ensues, romantic tension heightens, and before long this carriage ride to the Scottish border becomes one they’ll never forget. Readers intrigued by Sophie’s sisters will be pleased to know that they’re the focus of the other books in this series.

On shelves: December 29

Anything for You

It’s a love story, baby just say yes

Conor and Jessica’s love story has been 20 years in the making. He’s loved her since they were kids, and it’s buoyed him through the ups and downs of their 10-year-long relationship. At this point, he’s more than ready to start his life with her and he thinks that she’s ready too. But when he pops the question, Jessica responds with a resounding, “No.” Jessica views their relationship as more of a friends-with-benefits situation. Sure she has feelings for Conor, but her life is complicated enough without adding marriage to the mix. Her mentally handicapped younger brother is now living with her full-time, and her deadbeat dad has started coming around again and promising that he’s changed. But Conor isn’t satisfied with her answer, and gives her an ultimatum. He knows what he wants, and Jessica needs to decide if they want the same things or if she’s willing to lose him forever. Named one of Kirkus’ Best Books of 2015, this book can be read as a stand-alone novel, though fans of the Blue Heron series will particularly love this latest installment.

On shelves: December 29


At the end, music will save us all

A lot of the books on this list can be read as stand-alone novels even though they’re a part of a series, but this is not one of them. This is the eighth book in Karen Marie Moning’s Fever series, and it might be the most intense one yet. The Fae succeeded in destroying the ancient wall that kept them apart from the world of men, and the fabric of the universe was damaged in the process. The Earth is starting to disappear piece by piece. Mac, Barrons, Ryodan, and Jada are the only ones who can stop it. They seek the Song of Making, an ancient melody that is the source of life itself. Moning infuses this novel with danger at every turn and the series’ trademark sexual tension between Mac and the oh-so-sexy Barrons.

On shelves: January 19

My American Duchess

Have yourself a merry little engagement

You can’t talk about romance without mentioning Eloisa James. Earlier this year we revealed the stepback for My American Duchess, and we had the pleasure of talking to James about it. She said she was “very happy” to spend time in the world of this novel and we think you will be too. The romance revolves around American heiress, Merry, who has a habit of breaking engagements; and Trent, a Duke who worries he is incapable of love. The connection between the two is undeniable, but there is one hiccup in their perfect love story: Merry is betrothed to Trent’s twin brother, Cedric. Tension, drama, and true love make this another can’t-miss read from James.

On shelves: January 26


The wild, forbidden West

Fans of Western romances will be happy to hear that Beverly Jenkins is setting her new series in the Old West. Rhine Fontaine does what he can to pass as white. It’s something that has allowed him to create a successful and fulfilling life. He can’t think of anything he’d be willing to risk that for, until he meets Eddy Carmichael. After being rescued by Rhine in the desert, Eddy is struggling to fight the attraction she feels for him. She is determined to make as much money as she can from her cooking, and then get out of Nevada and away from the man she can’t get out of her head. Jenkins has a gift for writing romances featuring unforgettable heroines and heroes, and she’s one of the few writing historical novels that feature black history. Fans will not be disappointed with her latest.

On shelves: January 26

Wicked Sexy Liar

So wrong, so right

In our eyes, Christina Lauren can do no wrong. Their Wild Seasons series is equal parts hot, funny, and romantic, which is why we can’t wait to get our hands on the fourth book. This installment features the budding romance between Luke and London. Series regulars will remember that Luke is is Mia’s (Sweet Filthy Boy) ex, meaning he’s completely off limits to her friend London (Lola’s roommate). But when they meet, neither can ignore the spark of passion that they feel for each other. This can be read as a stand-alone novel, but we think new readers should treat themselves to the other titles in this series.

On shelves: February 2

Kings Rising

Long live the kings

The third and final book in C.S. Pacat’s political fantasy trilogy finds Damen in his most vulnerable position yet. Once the prince of Akielos, Damen has been concealing his true identity from his captor and sworn enemy, Prince Laurent. Damen is no longer the unwilling captive he once was, and has grown fond of Laurent. The trust they’ve built is shaky, though, and may not survive the revelation of who Damen really is. And there’s more at stake than their relationship: The fate of their kingdoms may rely on an alliance between them. This is a dark and erotic novel, filled with political intrigue. If you aren’t already addicted to this series, you have until early February to devour the first two installments.

On shelves: February 2



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