Like the first installment from earlier this week, romance booksellers and owners of The Ripped Bodice in Los Angeles Bea and Leah Koch wrote the seasonal preview for our recently-published sampler, Buzz Books 2018: Romance (free downloads are available for Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, Apple’s iBooks, and Google Play). In addition to the 14 featured pre-publication excerpts in the sampler (noted in boldface below), the Kochs picked a wealth of noteworthy forthcoming romance titles to look for.
Historical romance has always been the bedrock of the genre and this year sees both classical and modern takes on the genre.
The queen of the subversive historical is back. Cat Sebastian’s newest novel, A Duke in Disguise (Avon, November), is bringing a much needed breath of fresh air to the subgenre. Verity Plum is a radical, bisexual bookseller who turns to publishing bawdy novels when the government cracks down on sedition. Much to her dismay, she falls for a gentleman that she hires to illustrate her new stories, only to discover that he’s the heir to a dukedom. Sebastian’s previous LGBTQ historicals have been welcomed heartily into the genre.
Beloved historical romance novelist Jane Feather has a new home at Kensington with her first book in four years, Tempt Me With Diamonds (Kensington, January). The novel is based around a group of friends from an elite English boarding school. In the first of the trilogy we are introduced to Diana Sommerville, whose cherished brother has died and left the estate to his best friend, and the man Diana used to love…
We’re particularly excited about all the series continuations coming our way from some of the hottest names in historical romance.
Sherry Thomas’ gender-flipped Lady Sherlock series has been flying off our shelves since its debut two books ago. In The Hollow of Fear (Berkley, October), Charlotte Holmes faces her toughest case yet when her dear friend Lord Ingram is accused of the murder of his estranged wife — and she goes undercover to help prove his innocence.
Alyssa Cole is also continuing the popular Loyal League series set during The Civil War series with the third installment, An Unconditional Freedom (Kensington, February). He’s gone from free man to slave and back again, and has joined a coterie of spies as a last ditch attempt to do something meaningful with his life. When Daniel is paired with his fellow new recruit Janita Sanchez, their mutual passion flares.
Other historical upcoming romances to be excited about include:
The Governess Game from Regency superstar Tessa Dare (Avon, August); The Highlander Who Protected Me by Vanessa Kelly (Zebra, October); The pun-tastically titled It’s Getting Scot in Here from Suzanne Enoch (St. Martin’s, March); Not the Duke’s Darling by Elizabeth Hoyt, the first in a new series from this much loved author (Forever, December); The next Cavensham Heiresses offering The Good, The Bad and the Duke by Janna McGregor (St. Martin’s, December); Someone to Trust by Mary Balogh, the fifth Westcott series installment, takes place during the Christmas season (Berkley, November); The Lady Traveler’s Guide to Deception with an Unlikely Earl, Victoria Alexander (HQN, November), continuing another very fun, turn of the century set series; Once a Scoundrel, Mary Jo Putney (Zebra, September); The Governess, Christi Caldwell (Montlake, December); Susanna Kearsley brings her signature blend of past and present to Belleweather (Sourcebooks, August); Rebekah Weatherspoon puts a new spin on the classic amnesia trope with the third installment of her popular Beards & Bondage series in Harbor (December).
We’re excited for perennial favorite Nalini Singh’s return to her popular Guild Hunter series with Archangel’s Prophecy (Berkley, October). Human-turned-angel Elena Deveraux and her consort Archangel Raphael face their toughest challenge yet as Elena appears to be regressing back to her human form, and she’s not the only angel facing challenges…
Shelly Laurenston charmed longtime fans and new readers alike with the first in her Honey Badger Shifters books in 2018. Now it’s time to dive deeper with In A Badger Way (Kensington, March), the second in the series about three snarky sisters who just so happen to shift into honey badgers hybrids. This time, it’s youngest sister Stevie Barsuk’s turn to fall in love, and given her own eccentricities (her sisters would just call her a nutcase) it’s going to be a wild ride.
In Unchained by Helen Hardt (Waterhouse, October) vampire Dante Gabriel has finally escaped from years of servitude to a female vampire, and he’s craving human blood. He heads to the nearest blood bank to satisfy his hunger where he runs into ER nurse Erin Hamilton who finds herself oddly drawn to the handsome stranger.
Time travel romance is as hot as ever and Annie Becker brings us a new dark take with Time Bridge: Cassie (Blushing Books, October). Ex-reporter Cassie Martin is hoping for peace and quiet to write when she arrives at her brother’s Wisconsin farm. Her reporter’s instincts are piqued when she overhears an argument between two men about “manipulating time” and she has to know more. Enter Aaron Reegan, the head of security at a secretive facility. As he and Cassie realize they share the same dark erotic tastes and explore them together, Aaron never questions her motives. But suddenly, he’s travelling back in time to the 14th century to murder the woman he loves.
More paranormal romance titles to look out for:
Amanda Bouchet follows up her hit Kingmakers Chronicle trilogy with Nightchaser (Sourcebooks, January); Donna Grant brings passion to dragons with Dragonfire (St. Martin’s, October); More Than A Phoenix, Ashlyn Chase, (Sourcebooks, September). In the Mood Fur Love is an anthology featuring Kate Baxter, Eve Langlais, Milly Taiden, (St. Martin’s, October). One of the joys of long running series is that characters who were once children are now all grown up and ready for love, as in Crossbreed, the 23rd Breeds novel from Lora Leigh, (Berkley, September); Ilona Andrews continues the wildly popular Kate Daniels series with Magic Triumphs (Ace, August); Chloe Neill spins off her successful Chicagoland Vampires series with the first offering in Heirs of Chicagoland, Wild Hunger (Berkley, August).