Contemporarily Ever After: Top Picks for the Week of July 7th

Contemporarily Ever After: Top Picks for the Week of July 7th

Summer is heating up with all of the new contemporary romances hitting bookshelves and eReaders this week. Enjoy!

❤ Indicates the books that I have read and recommend.

All Grown Up by Vi Keeland (July 8) 

Vi Keeland’s latest contemporary romance takes the age-gap trope and gives it a sexy and intriguing twist — the heroine is twelve years older than the hero — and All Grown Up is an emotional, fan-yourself-worthy and singular love story that will have you smiling the entire time reading it. Valentina hasn’t jumped back into dating, although it’s been two years since her divorce, but her best friend pushes her to try online dating by setting up a profile for her. While she’s reluctant, she realizes it’s time for her to start trying new things and checks it out, and she finds herself striking up a chat relationship with someone. They have a flirtatious repartee and easy connection that has her hesitantly agreeing to meet him in person, but when they do, she realizes he’s the son of her summer house neighbor, used to babysit her own son and is much younger. She thinks it’s an impossible scenario and resists the pull between them, but Ford isn’t worried about their age difference or the semantics of how they originally met. He pursues her, and let me tell you, Ford is seriously swoon-worthy in his charm and patient seduction, and he will be on many, many book boyfriend lists. He’s gorgeous, sweet, kind, intuitive, smart and a smoking-hot dirty talker, and he lights the fire in Valentina that has been dimmed for many years. You’ll feel utterly everything as she comes into her own and discovers a happily ever after, both independently and with her soul mate. I adore absolutely everything about All Grown Up.

Wicked Games by T.K. Leigh (July 8)


He’s forbidden in every meaning of the word. But that doesn’t mean I can stay away.

It all started in Vegas.

Now, I know what you’re thinking…

What happens in Vegas is supposed to stay in the city of sin. Normally, I’d be inclined to agree. Until Lincoln Moore walks into my life.

On paper, we mix as well as oil and water.

He’s confident. Commanding. Successful. Master of his universe.

I’m a hot mess, barely holding on as I struggle to balance my job, finally finishing college, and keeping my mother sober.

But when the lights go out nothing else matters.

Until I learn the truth of who Lincoln Moore actually is.

Sure, I probably should have put the pieces together sooner, but our time together hasn’t exactly been filled with riveting philosophical discussions about the meaning of life, if you know what I mean.

That still doesn’t diminish the fact he could lose everything by being with me.

But is that enough to keep us apart? Or is what we have worth the risk?

There’s only one way to find out.

Let the games begin…

Dax by Sawyer Bennett (July 9)

It’s no surprise I devoured Sawyer Bennett’s latest hockey romance, Dax, in one sitting because, well, it’s a Sawyer Bennett hockey romance! She’s the queen of the ice, and I love her latest edition to the Arizona Vengeance series. It’s tender, steamy, entertaining and has a ton of heart. Dax is Regan’s brother’s best friend, and they’re both devastated after he is senselessly murdered. When Dax discovers that Regan is in a dire financial situation due to the astronomically expensive life-saving drugs that she needs, he demands she marry him and utilize his medical insurance. He never expected that he’d be so attracted to her when she moves in or that she’d feel the same way, but their chemistry is fan-yourself-worthy and unrelenting. They agree to enjoy no-strings sex during their marriage of convenience, but both find themselves feeling and wanting more than a physical relationship. Dax is swoon-worthy in his fierce protectiveness over Regan, and he’s adorable as he falls hard for her. I can’t wait for the next book in this series.

Just Love by Prescott Lane (July 9) 

Wow. I am still reeling days after finishing Just Love, and I am not sure I can write anything to do this story or these characters justice. It is one of the most breathtakingly beautiful, deeply affecting and utterly unforgettable love stories that I’ve ever read, and I’ve rarely felt so connected to or invested in a happily ever after as I was with Ainsley and Rhett’s. Their journey is gut-wrenchingly real, incredibly moving and downright epic, and while it is emotionally intense and sure to induce ugly-crying, it is also tender, funny and seriously sexy. It. Is. Everything. Prescott Lane runs the reader through the gamut of emotions and leaves us an exhausted, satisfied mess, and Just Love is a truly epic, timeless romance that is impossible to put down and hard to let go.

The (Secret) Baby by Leddy Harper (July 9)


A one-night stand becomes much, much more in this sexy, lighthearted romance.

Maid of honor Kelsey Peterson is disappointed when the bride-to-be bails on her bachelorette party—especially since Kelsey’s already ordered the stripper. Desperate for a break from her romantic woes, Kelsey goes through with the party. After all, why let a good stripper go to waste?

Dr. Aaron Baucus is definitely not a stripper. He’s a legit doctor with a PhD in neuropsychology. But when his friend calls him over to a bar to meet a bunch of tipsy, flirtatious bridesmaids, they assume otherwise. After all, their stripper was supposed to be dressed like a doctor. Aaron isn’t much for pretending, but with Kelsey, he’s willing to be whatever she wants him to be. At least for one night.

But fate has a wicked sense of humor: Aaron and Kelsey are the maid of honor and best man at the same wedding. And after their one-night stand, Kelsey’s pregnant, but she doesn’t know how to tell him. Aaron wants to start a relationship, but he doesn’t think Kelsey wants something long term. Can their fragile romance survive all the half truths and secrecy?

Only Ever You by C.D. Reiss (July 9)


Rachel knew exactly what turning thirty would be like. She had a plan, after all. First college, then a climb up the professional ladder. Love, marriage, children. All of it was on the schedule.

The cheap Hollywood apartment wasn’t on the list. Neither was the string of heartbreaks. Or the effect her mother’s cancer had on her career.

It’s hard to stay practical and on point when everything takes a left turn.

Enter Sebastian, the nerd across the street. The boy she defended when he couldn’t defend himself. The best friend she promised she’d marry if life didn’t go according to plan.

Not only is he successful, confident, and gorgeous, but he also still has their handwritten marriage contract.

No one goes through with childhood wedding pacts.

That’s crazy.

But their families might just be crazy enough to rent a hall and set a date. All Rachel and Sebastian have to do is fall in love.

Dating Mr. Right (Four Standalone Romantic Comedies) by Lauren Blakely (July 10)


Lucky Suit…

I’m breaking up with set-ups. No more “can I introduce you to my son, nephew, grandson, the butcher, the guy down the street who mows my lawn.” Machines know what’s best, and I’ll rely on the great dating algorithms of the web to find the ideal man, thank you very much.

Soon enough, it looks like I’ve found him — his nickname is Lucky Suit, and he’s hilarious, quick-witted and full of heart. But when I finally get together with him in person, I have the distinct feeling I’ve met him before.

Turns out there’s more to our meeting than I had thought, and when we discover what truly brought us together, all bets are off.

Once Upon A Red-Hot Kiss…

A man needs to stay far away from falling into bed with his best friend.
Even if she’s sexy as sin, sweet as candy, and damn near irresistible every single day.
But not only are Macy and I best friends, we’re also complete opposites. She’s perky, upbeat, outgoing and I’m . . . how shall we say . . . a little bit broody.
Then, she reveals something to me that just might lead me to revise all my rules on friends in bed…

Too Good To Be True…

To say I’m wary of love would be an epic understatement. Keep that four-letter word far away from me. 
But then a matchmaker friend insists she can pair me with the perfect man for me.
Even when sparks fly and chemistry crackles from the first date, I refuse to believe this kind of insta-connection can be the real thing.
Even though for the first time it feels like it could be.
Or is it just too good to be true? 

Strong Suit (a short story)…

From the day I meet Ginny in the conference room, I’m smitten with the co-worker who’s ten years my senior. And I’m going to pull out all the stops to win her over

Flutter by Carrie Aarons (July 11)


He can’t stand her, and best believe, the feeling is mutual.
Her life is the complete opposite of what he desires.
So, why can’t they keep their hands off each other?

Forrest Nash is a smug know-it-all. With his brains, ridiculous good looks and penchant for disobeying the laws of both the police and the dark web, Fawn Hill’s resident genius is cockier than any man Penelope Briggs has ever encountered. It doesn’t help that their six-year age difference makes him completely ineligible in her eyes. Add in the fact that he doesn’t want marriage or babies, and that should eliminate him from the dating pool forever. But it doesn’t mean she can’t sleep with him. Once. Or twice. Or ten times. Against all logic, though, Forrest seems to be sneaking into her heart at the same time he’s sneaking into her bed.

Penelope Briggs is one bossy, obnoxious woman. With three young children, a calendar full of school drop-offs and sports, and enough emotional baggage to fill an airplane, this widow is definitely not what Forrest Nash is looking for. And yet, he can’t get enough of the maddening bombshell. But as their hook-ups become a constant, so does his involvement in Penelope’s life. The things he swore he never wanted, love and kids, seem to be the only things on his mind. And when an attack from his part of the cyber world threatens her safety, he’ll have to admit his feelings for the woman he’d do anything to protect.

What started as a convenient friends-with-benefits situation is quickly growing wings. Even if both parties are trying hard to ignore the flutter.

On the Market by Audrey Wick (July 11)


Will she be the secret ingredient to his happiness?

Valerie Perry has just inherited her grandmother’s home in Last Stand, Texas, a far cry in the country from her city life as an organic grocery buyer in San Antonio. Her methodical daily routine suits her just fine, so she aims to freshen up the property, sell it, and take her funds back to the city. She’s only got two weeks during her vacation to make this happen. Now is the time to cash in and get out.

The oldest Hutchinson son, who people around town know as “Hutch,” is a third generation local who is poised to take over the family business with his brother, Cole. The barbeque brothers have very different ideas about the future of their restaurant, “The Hut.” Just when he thought his biggest headache was his job, Hutch meets Valerie and both their worlds are upended. He’s drawn to this fish out of water, but Valerie’s time in Last Stand has an expiration date. 

Their sweet and saucy styles don’t mix, but can they both find the recipe to a happy future?

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