Romance throughout American history

Happy 241st birthday, America! You don’t look a day over 240 years old. In honor of Independence Day, here are a few romances from some eras of American history that aren’t as beloved in the romance world as the Wild West or the Civil War, in chronological order.

Book cover image for Hamilton's BattalionHamilton’s Battalion by Courtney Milan,
Rose Lerner, and Alyssa Cole
This collection of historical romance novellas are all connected by one man: Alexander Hamilton. In Milan’s “The Pursuit Of,” a Black American soldier goes on a 500 mile walk and is joined by a motor-mouthed Redcoat, who knows that his companion’s silence can mean more than one thing. Rose Lerner’s “Promised Land” is the story of Rachel, a Jewish woman who disguises herself as a man to fight for America, only to come face to face with the man who broke her heart. And in Alyssa Cole’s “That Would Be Enough,” Mercy is Eliza Hamilton’s servant, helping Eliza’s quest to preserve her husband’s legacy. But when a bold dressmaker comes into the Hamilton household, Mercy must decide what’s more important: being safely alone or taking a chance on love. Continue reading “Romance throughout American history”

Dragons, wolves and bears in love – oh my!

Are you stuck in the winter doldrums? Perhaps you need some sexy romance novels to spice up these last winter days – why not add some steamy shapeshifting surprises to raise the temperature?

Isabel Cooper has a number of books about the dragon shapeshifting clan the MacAlasdairs. Her latest trilogy, Dawn of the Highland Dragon, takes us back to medieval Scotland during its time fighting for autonomy – a fight to which the MacAlasdairs bring their special fire-breathing skillset. Highland Dragon Warrior, the first book in the trilogy, introduces us to Cathal MacAlasdair. With a friend cursed by a wizard, he must enter into a partnership with alchemist Sophia Metzger, sacrificing part of himself in the process.

In Silver Silence by Nalini Singh, Silver Merchant is a telepath and the head of an aid organization that responds to terrorism. When her life is threatened, a bear changeling clan takes her in to protect her. Protected in their heavily fortified compound, Silver comes into increasing contact with the alpha of the clan, Valentin Nikolaev. As Silver and Valentin leave the compound to track down a shadowy faction that wants to undermine a peace treaty, they’ll have to balance work and their attraction. This is a prequel to the long running Psy/Changeling series, and is a good place to hop in. Continue reading “Dragons, wolves and bears in love – oh my!”

Second Chance Romance

Everyone has their romance catnip, a trope or plot device that makes it an automatic read for them. One favorite is the rekindled romance with a spouse, often after an estrangement or a marriage by proxy.

In Eloisa James’s The Ugly Duchess, Theo (Theodora) and James have known each other for years, and Theo thought their marriage was one of love. But when she finds that it was purely for her dowry, she escapes London for the Continent, leaving her husband. In response, James leaves as well and sets sail, becoming a notorious pirate. When Theo returns to London, she’s the toast of the Continent—confident in her unusual looks, and distrustful of James. How can he win her back? This is the fourth in James’ fairy tale retellings series. Continue reading “Second Chance Romance”

The Spy Who Loved Me

What is it about spies that make them such fantastic romance heroes? Is it the air of danger? The ability to write in code? Or maybe it’s that, when a hero is a spy, you know that eventually they’ll have to let down their guard and expose their secrets to the woman they love, proof of how she’s changed him and captured his heart. If you’re looking for heroes in service to the crown, this is a good start.

In Sherry Thomas’ His At Night, Elissande is virtually a prisoner of her uncle and the only way to escape is through marriage. In desperation, she sets her sights on Lord Vere, a notoriously vapid marquis. Once married, she’ll have freedom from her uncle, and with a husband who’s not very smart, she’ll have freedom within her marriage to do as she pleases.

Vere has spent years cultivating his reputation of idiocy, a man with no interests deeper than fashion, gaming, and skirt-chasing. But his secret is more than just his intelligence, it’s that he’s a spy in the service of the British government.  When he’s cornered into marriage by Elissande, at first it’s only physical passion that unites them. But as they slowly learn to reveal themselves, they find that it’s love. Sherry Thomas writes intelligent and original heroes and heroines, with angsty, passionate plots. Continue reading “The Spy Who Loved Me”

Noteworthy 2015 RITA Award Finalists

-Posted by Eric G.

The Romance Writers of America (RWA) announced the winners of the 2015 RITA Awards at their annual conference on July 25th. The RITA is one of the most prestigious awards for romance writers and its numerous subcategories showcase the variety within romance publishing. That being said, there were many excellent books nominated that didn’t walk away with the prize this year.

 

A Bollywood Affair in the Library catalogBest First Book nominee: A Bollywood Affair by Sonali Dev

Despite not winning Best First Book, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more winning romance from the past year than Sonali Dev’s debut. This joyful love story is steeped in rich Indian culture and was a library favorite that ended up on numerous staff-curated lists. Pick it up and join us in singing its praises.

 

Continue reading “Noteworthy 2015 RITA Award Finalists”