Contemporarily Ever After: Top Picks for the Week of April 21st

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I feel like I say it’s an epic lineup of new contemporary romances every week, so I’m not going to repeat myself and say it again this week. Of course, I basically just did so I suppose I’ll just own it, because it really is another epic week!

❤ Indicates the books that I have read and recommend.

Method by Kate Stewart (April 19)

Kate Stewart’s Method is an utterly original, breathtakingly romantic and downright fascinating novel, and I can confidently predict that it will be on my Best of 2019 list. When the story begins, Lucas is a very successful and famous actor, who has been married to Mila for six years, and he’s just lost his best friend to suicide. As he struggles with unanswered questions regarding his friend’s death and the weight of grief, he’s offered the movie role of lifetime. He accepts but Mila is extremely concerned, because Lucas uses the Method acting technique, which requires him to wholly immerse himself into his character. She fears he isn’t stable enough to endure the mental and emotional upheaval and knows this could be a dangerous experience that could break even the most steadfast and devoted relationship.

I could have never predicted the fascinating twists and turns as their marriage is put to the test, and I was on the edge of my seat and rooting for Mila and Lucas every step of the way. Kate Stewart has delivered a gritty, complex and enthralling story with superbly drawn characters and a deeply affecting romance that you’ll be thinking about long after finishing it.

Pieces of Us by A.L. Jackson (April 22)

I’ve loved every installment in A.L. Jackson’s Confessions of the Heart series, but the third, standalone book, Pieces of Us, absolutely stole my heart. It’s a beautifully written second-chance romance in which a hardworking, devoted single mom is reunited with her first love – the man who broke her heart thirteen years ago. Although they both still love each other, their reunion is bittersweet and complicated, but they fight their way to happily ever after. Pieces of Us is an incredibly sexy, breathtakingly romantic and deeply satisfying journey.

The Austen Playbook by Lucy Parker (April 22)

 

Lucy Parker continues her fan-freaking-tastic London Celebrities series with the fourth, stand-alone book, The Austen Playbook, and everyone is absolutely raving about this book, including my co-contributor, Keria Soleore. See her review here on Frolic. 

Fumbled by Alexa Martin (April 23)

I adored the first book in Alexa Martin’s Playbook series, Intercepted, and I couldn’t wait to read the second, Fumbled. I’m happy to say that it was worth the wait, and it exceeded my high expectations. It’s a second-chance love story brimming with laugh-out-loud humor, fan-yourself-worthy sexy times and tender, emotional romance. Poppy and TK fell in love young and fell out of love hard when their relationship ended abruptly. They haven’t seen each other in ten years, and TK doesn’t know that he’s a dad. They run into each other and discover they’ve never fallen out of love, but Poppy has a big, precious secret she needs to reveal. As they navigate becoming a couple and a family, they must also deal with the pressures of the life of a professional football player, which Alexa Martin gives us an insightful and honest look into. Fumbled is the kind of book that you don’t want to end, and you can’t wait to read again.

Lord Have Mercy by Lani Lynn Vale (April 23)

Lord Have Mercy is the second, standalone book in Lani Lynn Vale’s The Southern Gentleman series, and it’s a funny, sexy and warm enemies-to-lovers romance with a touch of mystery and suspense and plenty of quirky small-town charm. Camryn and Flint have a playful, frenemies relationship that is increasingly charged with sexual tension and tempts them both to consider being more than just flirty, bickering coworkers. You’ll laugh, smile, sigh and fan yourself as their relationship evolves into something more and as they deal with a few unexpected curve balls.

The Careless Boyfriend by Erika Kelly (April 23)

 

The Careless Boyfriend is the third, standalone book in Erika Kelly’s fabulous Bad Boyfriend series and features former high school friends, who see each other after years of not talking and a painful falling out. Their messy past makes them more enemies than friends now, and they have to heal their broken relationship by being brutally honest with one another. I predict there will be a lot of feels in this one.

Stay with Me by K.L. Grayson (April 23)

K.L. Grayson’s Stay with Me is a sexy and heartfelt second-chance romance with an abundance of sweet, entertaining and emotional moments that ensure you feel everything. Jackson and Allie were high school sweethearts and deeply in love when he left their small town to seek fame and fortune as a musician, and he broke both of their hearts. He’s done with music and has moved back to town, and he wants Allie back but her life is very different now. She’s divorced and a single mom, and she isn’t sure that she’s ready to trust Jackson with her or her son’s hearts. She and Jackson’s careful steps back into each other’s arms will pull at your heartstrings and make you wistful thinking about the romance of first love.

Cruel Fortune (Cruel trilogy #2) by K.A. Linde (April 23). Not a standalone.

 

K.A. Linde is one of my go-to authors, and I’ll be binge-reading the Cruel trilogy as soon as all three books are released. If you’re not waiting, the second book, Cruel Fortune, is out now.

Junk Mail by Kendall Ryan (April 23)

 

Junk Mail is Kendall Ryan’s latest sexy page-turner, and it is another smile-inducing, laugh-provoking, sigh-worthy romantic comedy that you do not want to miss. A man accidentally sends a not-safe-for-work photo to the wrong woman and discovers right afterwards that she’s his new co-worker. You can read an excerpt here on Frolic.

Luca by Brenda Rothert (April 23)

 Brenda Rothert continues her hockey romance series, Chicago Blaze, with the second, standalone book, Luca, and it will wring a lot of feelings out of you. Luca is a dedicated professional athlete and a devoted new guardian to his nephew and nieces. He’s managing being a single dad when he meets Abby and has an unforgettable one-night stand that neither can forget. She has a wounded heart and has built a fortress around it and doesn’t want to get involved, so they agree to a casual, sex-only relationship. They quickly find themselves wanting more, but Luca has to tear down Abby’s walls in order to understand her and convince her to give them and his kids a shot. He’s sweet, patient and seriously sexy as he does, and Luca is a sports romance with a lot of heart and an emotional punch.

Baby Mine: Hunter & Lennon (Roommate Duet #1) by Kennedy Fox (April 23). Not a standalone.

Kennedy Fox recently took a break from writing duets with jaw-dropping cliffhangers and focused on standalones, but they’re back with the Roommate Duet, and you’ll need an industrial lift to scrape your jaw off the floor after finishing the first book, Baby Mine: Hunter & Lennon. Hunter has been in love with his best friend’s girlfriend, Lennon, who is also his roommate, for years but hides it behind a mask of annoyance. They have a lighthearted frenemies-to-lovers dynamic, but everything changes when his friend tragically dies and Lennon discovers that she is pregnant. They lean on each other in their grief, but Hunter soon can no longer hide how he feels about her. And this is about all I can tell you, but I can promise that you’ll love every emotional, tender and steamy page and be begging for the second book, Baby Yours, which releases May 23.  

The Perfect First by Maya Hughes (April 25)

I don’t read New Adult romances very often, but I do when Maya Hughes writes them. I love her writing and characters, and her latest – The Perfect Firstis going on my keeper shelf. Seph is a sheltered math genius, who has finally gotten out from under her father’s thumb and gone away to college. She yearns for the typical university experience and decides she’s ready to ditch her virginity. She puts out an ad to solicit candidates, and the most popular athlete on campus, Reese, inadvertently disrupts her interviews before they ever begin. He’s drawn to the quirky nerd and decides he wants to protect her. It’s the beginning of an unlikely friendship that evolves into a swoon-worthy romance, and you’ll adore every moment of this funny, sexy and heartwarming collegiate love story.

Boyfriend Maintenance by Lauren Helms (April 25)

 

If you love the fake relationship trope, you do not want to miss Boyfriend Maintenance. It’s a sweet and sexy romance in which a woman convinces the smoking-hot maintenance man in her apartment building to be her date to her brother’s wedding.

Just My Type by Tara Sivec (April 25) 

Tara Sivec is one of my favorite authors of romantic comedy, and Just My Type reminds me why. Ember is a single mother, recently divorced and living in a city that she hates. She’s been sad and wallowing in self-pity until she has a hilarious exchange with one of her anonymous transcription clients, Baker. They engage in a hilarious back and forth exchanging razor-sharp, sexually tense banter that makes them intrigued to meet. And they do. They get along fabulously and their chemistry is intense, but Ember is hesitant to get involved again. Baker is downright swoon-worthy and charms her to reconsider giving him a chance and risking her heart. You’ll be grinning from ear to ear when these two get together, and Just My Type is seriously sexy, highly entertaining and perfectly romantic.

For Lila, Forever by Winter Renshaw (April 25)

 

This second-chance romance in which star-crossed lovers are reunited after twelve years sounds like it will be angst-y, intense and fan-yourself-worthy.

Imperfect Match by Melanie Harlow & Corinne Michaels (April 26)

 

When two of your favorite authors team up to write a book together, it’s like Christmas and your birthday all rolled into one! Thank you, Melanie Harlow and Corinne Michaels for the gift of Imperfect Match. It’s an engaging, ultra-sexy, friends-to-lovers romance with characters you’ll absolutely love and want to cheer for. Willow is challenged by her mom (and boss) to find her best friend, Reid, the perfect match, and the process pushes both of them to see each other in a whole new light. Their hilarious and steamy dance to happily ever after is a thoroughly enjoyable, feel-good experience.

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