A steamy courtship in which love can hurt so good. Just don’t expect the substance to rival the sex.

DANGEROUSLY BAD

A bold Scotsman woos a Creole artist with a bit of BDSM and a whole lot of trust.

Duff Stewart is new to New Orleans by way of Edinburgh, heading up the motorcycle division of his cousin Jamie’s auto shop. While Duff loves vintage bikes, he loves BDSM in the bedroom even more, frequenting the local BDSM club called The Bastille. It’s there that he first sees Layla Chouset, a domme who only plays with women at the club and never takes the role as a submissive. There’s a hidden story there, and Duff is determined to get to the bottom of it, pursuing Layla through dinner dates and a shared interest in art and design; Duff’s focus is on motorcycles, while Layla’s is on sculpture. This is an erotic romance with little external conflict; readers won’t find any jealous ex-lovers or meddling third parties hellbent on tearing the couple apart. Instead, the focal point is on coping with insecurities and learning to accept yourself. Layla has been burned by men before, which is why she insists on taking a dominant role in the bedroom, and her estrangement from her conservative family makes her wary of being judged by those close to her. At times, Layla’s monologues about her self-doubt can become tiresome, but her family’s dysfunction and the hurt she feels about not living up to their standards are easy to relate to. Duff is a pillar of support for Layla as she works through her baggage, and it’s good to see a romance hero take on a more nurturing position. Fans of Bradley's Dangerous series (Dangerously Broken, 2015, etc.) will enjoy the frequent boundary-pushing love scenes, but the heart of the romance isn’t terribly complex.

A steamy courtship in which love can hurt so good. Just don’t expect the substance to rival the sex.

Pub Date: May 16, 2017

ISBN: 978-0-425-26998-5

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Berkley Sensation

Review Posted Online: April 18, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 2017

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Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable...

THE UNHONEYMOONERS

An unlucky woman finally gets lucky in love on an all-expenses-paid trip to Hawaii.

From getting her hand stuck in a claw machine at age 6 to losing her job, Olive Torres has never felt that luck was on her side. But her fortune changes when she scores a free vacation after her identical twin sister and new brother-in-law get food poisoning at their wedding buffet and are too sick to go on their honeymoon. The only catch is that she’ll have to share the honeymoon suite with her least favorite person—Ethan Thomas, the brother of the groom. To make matters worse, Olive’s new boss and Ethan’s ex-girlfriend show up in Hawaii, forcing them both to pretend to be newlyweds so they don’t blow their cover, as their all-inclusive vacation package is nontransferable and in her sister’s name. Plus, Ethan really wants to save face in front of his ex. The story is told almost exclusively from Olive’s point of view, filtering all communication through her cynical lens until Ethan can win her over (and finally have his say in the epilogue). To get to the happily-ever-after, Ethan doesn’t have to prove to Olive that he can be a better man, only that he was never the jerk she thought he was—for instance, when she thought he was judging her for eating cheese curds, maybe he was actually thinking of asking her out. Blending witty banter with healthy adult communication, the fake newlyweds have real chemistry as they talk it out over snorkeling trips, couples massages, and a few too many tropical drinks to get to the truth—that they’re crazy about each other.

Heartfelt and funny, this enemies-to-lovers romance shows that the best things in life are all-inclusive and nontransferable as well as free.

Pub Date: May 14, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2803-5

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: March 3, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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A smooth blend of suspense and romance. As ever, the author's trademark effortless style keeps a complex plot moving without...

THE VILLA

Megaselling Roberts (River's End, 1999, etc.) goes to Napa Valley for the tale of an Italian-American family wine producers rocked by scandal and a series of murders.

Dynasty head Tereza Giambelli knows that her granddaughter Sophia is the only family member capable of running a multimillion-dollar wine business—and no one contradicts La Signora. It's just as well the lovely young woman is still single: Tereza has plans for her. The matriarch has recently married Eli MacMillan, the American founder of another famous wine company. Eli's grandson Tyler knows everything there is to know about producing wine, from the vineyard to the vat. Ruggedly handsome, intelligent and earthy, he's a perfect match for public-relations whiz Sophia—or so thinks Tereza. The two young people begin to work together; Tyler teaches Sophia the fine art of making wine and making love. But other family members hope to claim their share of the Giambelli fortune, and people start dying mysteriously, including Sophia's good-for-nothing father, Tony Avano. Long divorced from long-suffering Pilar Giambelli, Tony led an opulent, self-indulgent life that provides plenty of murder suspects. He might have been killed by the mob, or a jealous mistress, or his spoiled brother-in-law, Tereza's lazy son, who's produced a passel of brats with his foolish Italian wife in the hopes of making Tereza happy. Everyone has a motive, and nothing is what it seems, Sophia discovers, but Tyler stands by her. Then a bottle of tainted merlot kills a company exec. A tragic mishap caused by poisonous plants growing near the vines? Or deliberate product tampering intended to destroy the company? Sophia and Tyler will need to delve even deeper into the convoluted and sometimes unsavory history of the family and its three-generation business.

A smooth blend of suspense and romance. As ever, the author's trademark effortless style keeps a complex plot moving without a hitch.

Pub Date: March 19, 2001

ISBN: 0-399-14712-8

Page Count: 432

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2001

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