Romance Roundup: Baseball Players, Horse Trainers, and Fake Engagements

This week’s Romance Roundup includes a single mom who meets a very sexy baseball player, a horse trainer who falls for her very sexy boss, and a lady traveler who needs to reconcile with her very sexy husband.

Consumed, by J.R. Ward
Anne Ashburn is not having the best time right now. She was once a fearless firefighter, but then she made a mistake and now she’s relegated to arson investigations. This may sound totally cool, but it’s just not enough for our gal. Then a bunch of weird fires start popping up around the city, which gets her fires going. She’s also crushing on Danny McGuire, who is considered her department’s bad boy. He may be all abs and sinew, but Danny’s going through a tough time of his own right now, and it seems that helping Anne investigate these mysterious fires is going to get his engines going again. It doesn’t take long for them both to realize that they’d like to help each other put on—and also take off—their bunker gear. Here’s hoping they catch the arsonist, and that they each find the love and peace—and promotions—they deserve! This reprint is the first book in Ward’s Firefighters series. (Available in paperback on June 18.)

The Perfect Date, by Evelyn Lozada and Holly Lorincz
Our gal Angel Gomez has come a long way since she became a teen mom. Not only is she working like crazy to provide for herself and her young son, she’s also putting herself through nursing school. (Angel, we’re all going to babysit while you enjoy a relaxing spa day on us!) She meets Bronx Bolts pitcher Caleb Lewis, who, let’s just say, has never lacked for female attention. That said, he fails spectacularly at trying to impress Angel. It’s so bad that she throws a drink in his handsome face in a “Dynasty”-like moment we can only envy. Still, they manage to come to an agreement by which Angel will pretend to be Caleb’s very special lady. (He really, but REALLY, needs to keep those pesky tabloids off of his delectable backside.) It doesn’t take Caleb long to realize that Angel is an exceptionally special woman. As for Angel, she starts to reexamine her life and realizes that she is ready for love. Stop dawdling, you two! (Available in paperback and NOOK.)

The Lemon Sisters, by Jill Shalvis
Sisters Brooke and Mindy Lemon have always been a tad different. Brooke traveled and had tons of adventures and all that proverbial jazz, while Mindy led a more traditional life and now has three children. (Ladies, let us make this abundantly clear: We respect BOTH of your life choices and think you are BOTH awesome!) To Brooke’s surprise, Mindy shows up at her house and admits she’s having a not-so-great time these days and needs her sister’s love and support. Brooke decides to take Mindy’s kids back to their hometown of Wildstone, California so that Mindy can have some R&R. Brooke hasn’t been back home in seven years, and she soon runs into Garrett, The One That Got Away. (Brooke, we’ll all happily chase him down for you and make sure he never leaves your sight again!) Brooke and Garrett certainly have a lot of catching up to do. Will they be able to rekindle that flame? Will Mindy get the rest she deserves and figure out her next life move? Is Garrett good with kids? We sure hope so! (Available in hardcover, paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on June 18.)

Cowboy to the Core, by Maisey Yates
Our gal Jamie Dodge has a new boss in the form of saddle bronc rider Gabe Dalton. (It’s a good thing he’s not OUR boss, because just looking at him makes one want to do engage in NAUGHTY behavior that human resources would FROWN upon and result in all of us getting FIRED.) Anyhoo…Gabe is very grateful for Jamie’s presence because she’s very good at her job. (See: badass.) He also can’t deny that he has developed all of the feelings for her. (Gabe, we KNEW all of that riding—hehe—didn’t addle your brain or your heart!) He doesn’t want to get too close, though, because Jamie has some very protective relatives. Here’s hoping he finds a quiet moment to show Jamie how he feels about her, that she reciprocates his feelings, and that Gabe proceeds to show her why she won’t ever (like, ever) regret choosing him! This book is part of Yates’ Gold Valley series. (Available in paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on June 18.)

Some Like It Scandalous, by Maya Rodale
Sexy Manhattan millionaire Theodore Prescott is smack-dab in the middle of a major scandal, and the only thing that will save his beautiful backside is marriage. (Theodore, we all volunteer as tribute!) As for Daisy Swann, has her own proverbial fish to fry. She’s a budding makeup entrepreneur, and she needs the kind of feedback and promotion and endorsement that only a charming society man like Theodore can provide. She and Theodore decide to do The Fake Engagement Thing in order to preserve their respective reputations. It doesn’t take long for Theodore to realize that he really wants to impress Daisy in every way possible, both in society and in the bedroom, or for Daisy to realize she’d like to engage in the kind of behavior that would shock society prudes. Daisy and Theodore, please follow your hearts—and your dreams—and give everyone in town something to talk about! This is the second book in Rodale’s Gilded Age Girls Club series. (Available in paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on June 18.)

The Lady Travelers Guide to Happily Ever After, by Victoria Alexander
Violet Hagen has spent the last seven years traveling the globe and having all kinds of experiences and adventures. (Violet, we all SO want to read your memoirs!) She has to go back to England, though, because her late uncle, the Earl of Ellsworth, made a truly inconvenient stipulation in his will. (Dude, if you were still alive, we’d all whack you with our fans!) The will requires that Violet reconcile with her uncle’s heir, who is actually her husband, James. If she doesn’t reconcile with him, she’ll lose her money. Trouble is, James broke her heart many years ago. (James, buddy, since YOU are alive we absolutely WILL whack you with our fans!) They’ve both changed quite a bit over the years, though. (Long story short: He’s a better man and she’s a stronger woman.) Will James manage to woo Violet so that they can start a new chapter of their married lives? This is the fourth book in Alexander’s Lady Travelers Society series. (Available in paperback, audiobook, and NOOK on August 27.)

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