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Dear Author Recommends for May

I’m sorry for my delinquency in posting this.   My lame is excuse is real world things interfering with my online fun.   Without further ado, here is our May recommendations.

  • To Beguile a Beast by Elizabeth Hoyt.   A beautiful courtesan falls in love with a scarred, tormented lord.  Recommended by Jayne.   
  • Gift from the Sea by Anna Schmidt. Enemies turned lovers historical set in early 20th C America. Recommeded by Jayne.
  • Always a Scoundrel by Suzanne Enoch.   True rogue tries to shed his past bad association and help a pratical woman about to be trapped in marriage to a man who takes pleasure in destroying others.   Recommended by Jane.
  • Hard and Fast  by Erin McCarthy.   Dyslexic stock car racer falls for sociology graduate student.   Funny and sexy.   Recommended by Jane.
  • The Madness of Lord Ian McKenzie  by Jennifer Ashley.   Asperger sufferer seduces a widow who curbs his madness.   Recommeded by Robin and Jane.
  • Dead and Gone  by Charlaine Harris.   Robin says this is one of the best in the series.
  • Not Quite a Husband  by Sherry Thomas.   Estranged couple reuintes and rekindles their love after overcoming past betrayals. Recommended by Janine, who by way of disclosure, is Sherry’s critique partner.   
  • The Conqueror by Kris Kennedy. Medieval knight woos barons and landowners to Henry II’s side while plotting to regain his birthright, Everoot, and uproot its current residents including the woman he is falling in love with.   Recommended by Jane (it’s on sale for $2.38).

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Scarlett
    May 08, 2009 @ 08:59:11

    I’ve got the Hoyt, Enoch and Ashley books waiting for me to read this weekend. And the Sherry Thomas book is on pre-order. So I’m happy to see all of them on this list.

  2. readerdiane
    May 08, 2009 @ 09:31:04

    I really enjoyed Dead and gone also. I am getting a wee bit tired of the heroines getting so beat up in all of the paranormals I have been reading lately.
    I do think the last book in the series was my favorite.

  3. ReacherFan
    May 08, 2009 @ 10:09:04

    Well, I have Hoyt, just finished Enoch (I like that series) and Erin McCarthy’s book will be here Monday. :-) I liked a lot of her books. I looked at The Conqueror and it didn’t sound like my kind of story.

  4. valor
    May 08, 2009 @ 10:43:19

    Oh good, I’m off for a book buy this afternoon. The Ashley book goes on the list, for sure.

  5. joanne
    May 08, 2009 @ 13:18:30

    The Jennifer Ashley book Madness of Lord Ian McKenzie was an absolute keeper for me. Who knows why but it just really struck every high-note in a month full of really great releases.

    Vision in White by Nora Roberts & Hard and Fast by Erin McCarthy — made two contemporary romances and — that’s one more then I normally read in a month and both of them great.

    Always a Scoundrelby Suzanne Enoch and To Beguile a Beast had all the components I love in historicals but they just didn’t work as well for me as they did for others.

  6. GrowlyCub
    May 08, 2009 @ 14:15:45

    Joanne, ouch! I didn’t connect with the Ashley, even though I felt sure I would and I hate seeing that you didn’t like the Hoyt because I have/d high hopes for it and I was tentatively considering the Enoch since the Ashley didn’t do it for me. I didn’t care much for the last Hoyt, even though it had a setup I really enjoy, so now I’m all leery.

    Grumble. :( I can’t wait for the Thomas to come out and I want to read the next Balogh but I won’t pay HC prices so I won’t get to that for a while. I really enjoyed book 3 of the Huxtables, so much better than no. 2, but again not as emotionally punchy as some of her earlier works.

  7. joanne
    May 08, 2009 @ 15:30:10

    I didn't connect with the Ashley, even though I felt sure I would and I hate seeing that you didn't like the Hoyt because I have/d high hopes for it and I was tentatively considering the Enoch since the Ashley didn't do it for me.

    Isn’t that what makes the romance world go-round? I know that Lord Ian wasn’t/won’t be a fav for other readers so maybe it was just the right time and characters and pace of writing for me all coming together?

    I’m invested in the Hoyt series and love a broken hero so I have no idea why I considered it only an okay read. I didn’t hate it, I just didn’t loooove it (and that may very well have been all the kid stuff).

    My milage almost always varies from those people I recommend books to so don’t let my thoughts stop you from trying the Enoch book, I think one of the Ja(y)nes gave it an A but the next day I couldn’t remember what it was about.

    On a positive note: I’m always happy when the new releases don’t come with a wall-banger!

  8. GrowlyCub
    May 08, 2009 @ 15:40:40

    I'm invested in the Hoyt series and love a broken hero so I have no idea why I considered it only an okay read. I didn't hate it, I just didn't loooove it

    That’s exactly how I felt about the second book in that series and I was so hoping this one would be getting me out of the slump. I’ll still read it, I’m just more leery now, since I had such high hopes for Lord Ian. The Enoch has setup issues for me, so that’s why I haven’t picked it up yet…

    I’m currently re-reading old favorites, since it seems I cannot do justice to new books right now. Here’s to hoping *something* will come around soon with which I’ll connect deeply.

    It’s so frustrating to read books and feel that you aren’t quite getting there, kinda like not getting that orgasm you know is just around the corner… grin

  9. DanceChica
    May 08, 2009 @ 16:29:39

    Glad to hear I’m not the only one who hasn’t connected with Lord Ian. So many people have raved about the book I was wondering if I just had too many stressors going on right now for me to enjoy it. That could be it, but I really think the story just isn’t connecting as I’d thought it would.

    I liked Hoyt’s Princes trilogy (particularly The Serpent Prince) but I am just not enjoying this Four Soldiers series. The first book was okay, the second I didn’t finish and the third I decided not to even bother with. I do like Hoyt’s writing–I think she writes great characters and develops them well–but these latest books aren’t working for me.

    I do have Enoch’s book and I’m still interested in starting it. Bram’s character really intrigued me in After the Kiss and I look forward to reading more about him.

  10. Janine
    May 09, 2009 @ 00:32:45

    I also want to recommend The Reluctant Heiress by Eva Ibbotson. This is a reissue of an old book (Magic Flutes) under a new title, but it’s a charming, lovely romance set in 1920s Austria.

  11. Julie M
    May 09, 2009 @ 11:55:29

    I was very curious about Ashley’s “Lord Ian” as my son has Asperger’s. I liked it quite a bit but as someone said that’s what makes the romance world go round – different things for different people.

    Regarding the characterization of Asperger’s I thought she did a good job. I realize that people who have Asperger’s are as different as people who don’t have it but I recognized some things and found myself saying “nope we don’t deal with that” about others. Also while my son is very literal, he has a wicked sense of humor. There was a period of time when he would ask us if something was an idiom and ask us to explain it and sometimes he doesn’t get our jokes but he has a great sense of humor (He adores “Pearls before Swine” and “Calvin and Hobbes”.) His teacher’s even say that he tends to be the only one who laughs or gets their jokes, (he’s almost 12 and in middle school but this has been true since second grade.) I thought of that every time it was mentioned Lord Ian didn’t understand Beth’s humor. Then at the end of the book he apparently makes a joke. (Which I didn’t really get!) But for me it was quite nice to see an Asperger’s hero, I’ve certainly noticed that a lot of “non-social” nutcase villians or as my husband says “troubled loners” in movies have characteristics that are reminisent of Asperger’s.

    Regarding Hoyt’s books, I hope I say this well, I like the Four Solidier’s series, but I feel like I understand what people are saying about them. I just don’t feel quite the same about them as I do the first series. It took me a while to get into the first book. I like the second better and I like the third but I just thought I would absolutely love it. But having read the first three I am so anxious for the fourth book. I wondered who the hero would be and I didn’t see it coming at all. I’ll be snapping up the fourth book this fall.

    (Coming out of lurk and you can see why I lurk – my natural verbosity comes out online as well in person…)

  12. Kris Kennedy» Dear Author-The Conqueror is a Recommended Read for May
    May 09, 2009 @ 20:47:58

  13. Brenna
    May 09, 2009 @ 20:54:24

    I also want to recommend The Reluctant Heiress by Eva Ibbotson. This is a reissue of an old book (Magic Flutes) under a new title, but it's a charming, lovely romance set in 1920s Austria.


    I’ll definitely take you on that. I just read my first Ibbotson book (actually it was an audio book and read by Davina Porter since it was not available in ebook format), A Countess Below Stairs and it was such a charming and delightful story. I am looking at her backlist right now. I’m rather disappointed that her books are not out in ebook format. If it were, I’d be at the Sony site buying it right away.

  14. Janine
    May 10, 2009 @ 17:25:01

    Brenna, I’m glad to hear you enjoyed A Countess Below Stairs, and hope you enjoy The Reluctant Heiress too. I also wish Ibbotson’s books were available in e-books, but I’m enough of a fan to buy them regardless.

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