The book dances on a dark edge and frolics in naughtiness but is mostly a hot "villains redeemed" fantasy romp.

IN BED WITH THE BILLIONAIRE

An assassin is hired to take out a notorious crime lord, but she finds herself caught in a web of desire and uncertainty when it turns out that the infamous villain just might be a hero.

Seven years after her sister disappeared into the horrifying maze of a sex-trafficking ring run by an enigmatic man known as Jericho, assassin Temple Cross has been hired to kill him. It's a job she's pleased to accept, and she hopes to find out what happened to Thalia before he takes his last breath. Allowing herself to be “caught” in the slave trade gives her the opportunity to get up close and personal with Jericho, who's movie-star handsome and so sexually compelling it takes her breath away. Even more surprising, their incendiary attraction to each other keeps them both alive long enough to create an odd sympathy between them that leads to the realization that neither is what they seem, and beneath their cruel reputations and emotional armor, they are both righteous warriors whose missions have led them down questionable paths. After Temple learns the truth about what happened to her sister—and Jericho’s role in her fate—she begins to dig deeper into his secrets, and as she becomes aware of the dangerous game he’s playing, she’s more worried about his survival than fulfilling her contract to see him dead. Jericho’s many enemies are closing in, and just when Temple begins to believe in redemption, time may run out on their chance for a happy ending. There’s no question that Ashenden has a knack for redemptive characters, pulse-pounding conflict, and a roller-coaster plot, though the occasional slipped detail or not-quite-believable element pulls us out of the story here and there.

The book dances on a dark edge and frolics in naughtiness but is mostly a hot "villains redeemed" fantasy romp.

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-250-07786-8

Page Count: 432

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: Sept. 21, 2016

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2016

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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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With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

LOVE AND OTHER WORDS

Eleven years ago, he broke her heart. But he doesn’t know why she never forgave him.

Toggling between past and present, two love stories unfold simultaneously. In the first, Macy Sorensen meets and falls in love with the boy next door, Elliot Petropoulos, in the closet of her dad’s vacation home, where they hide out to discuss their favorite books. In the second, Macy is working as a doctor and engaged to a single father, and she hasn’t spoken to Elliot since their breakup. But a chance encounter forces her to confront the truth: what happened to make Macy stop speaking to Elliot? Ultimately, they’re separated not by time or physical remoteness but by emotional distance—Elliot and Macy always kept their relationship casual because they went to different schools. And as a teen, Macy has more to worry about than which girl Elliot is taking to the prom. After losing her mother at a young age, Macy is navigating her teenage years without a female role model, relying on the time-stamped notes her mother left in her father’s care for guidance. In the present day, Macy’s father is dead as well. She throws herself into her work and rarely comes up for air, not even to plan her upcoming wedding. Since Macy is still living with her fiance while grappling with her feelings for Elliot, the flashbacks offer steamy moments, tender revelations, and sweetly awkward confessions while Macy makes peace with her past and decides her future.

With frank language and patient plotting, this gangly teen crush grows into a confident adult love affair.

Pub Date: April 10, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-2801-1

Page Count: 416

Publisher: Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Jan. 23, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

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