Seasoned Romance is a sub-genre of romance that contains main characters that are 35 years old, or older. Not all books self-identify as Seasoned Romance but that doesn’t mean they don’t contain the criteria to fit the bill. These books can fall into a plethora of categories, from romantic suspense to paranormal and everything in between. Paranormal does get a little tricky with the whole immortality aspect, I mean lots of vampires are well over 35 when they find their mates! Either way you cut it, Seasoned Romance is wildly relatable to many romance readers. Love is love and it’s never too late to find it, or rediscover what was already there!
Books marked with a are books I’ve read and highly recommend!
Engaging the Enemy (The Bourbon Brothers #3) by Reese Ryan
Parker Abbott will do whatever it takes to be the next CEO of King’s Finest Distillery, even play fake fiancé to his childhood nemesis, Kayleigh Jemison. Yet as he and the fiery redhead get reacquainted, sparks fly and real passion emerges. As with all things Reese Ryan, it’s never that easy! Ryan has a knack for packing a whole lot of emotion in a category romance. She doles out the angst in a way that progresses the story’s conflict without weighing down the characters.
I read Engaging the Enemy in one sitting and enjoyed every moment of it. Ryan writes family dynamics in a way that pulls you in so quickly and thoroughly, you’ll expect to get an invite to Sunday dinner.
Hide and Seek (Criminal Profiler #1) by Mary Burton
We first met Special Agent Macy Crow after a vicious hit-and-run nearly kills her in Cut and Run but have no fear, this is a complete standalone. Macy she gets right back to work, and now she’s gunning for a spot on the FBI’s elite profiling team. As an audition for the job, she heads out into the field to help solve a newly re-opened cold case with a former colleague and lover, sheriff Mike Nevada.
Burton writes phenomenal mystery/crime dramas with a heavy dose of romantic suspense. Her attention to crime details rivals the creepiest episodes of Criminal Minds you’ve ever watched. Burton’s bad guys are truly unredeemable. They go there and be warned, reading at bedtime will cause very interesting and perhaps disturbing dreams! Her stories will tax the sleuthing part of your brain as you sort through her many red herrings. And the romance is heartfelt and reasonably timed (no one the run, the killer is right outside the door, boning). Have no fear, you get chemistry, steam and a hefty dose of shower sex to relax your tense muscles!
I’m excited to see where this series goes and who gets the next book. Her secondary characters are all well plotted and richly described. All of Burton’s books can be read as standalones but she often has old characters make surprise cameos.
Love, Again by LP Dover
This book runs towards the younger end of Seasoned Romance but it’s close enough for government work. I’m a sucker for a small town, second chance romance and Love, Again rises to the challenge!
Aubrey is a small-town girl who’s made it big as a Hollywood director. Aubrey doesn’t have time to linger on what could have been. But a medical scare rattles her enough to take some much-needed time off to do some things she’s always wanted to do; eat the cookies, hike the mountains, swim in the Caribbean…and visit the man she left behind.
Cole is a small-town fireman who had his heart broken when the love of his life left their hometown to chase her dreams. Color him shocked when all these years later, the girl of his dreams walks into his favorite bar, looking for him. Maybe this time both of them can have their dreams come true.
I would be remiss if I left these two books off my recommendation list. Technically, they released at the very end of March but I couldn’t make an April list without them, they are just too good to miss!
Forever In Your Service (In Service #2) by Sandra Antonelli (Mar 29)
The In Service series has been referred to as “a James Bond and his housekeeper romance” for the over 40s set. Book one, At Your Service set the wild and adventurous stage for our main characters, Mae and Kitt. With a blurb like this, how can you go wrong?
A heartbroken butler. A dead spy. A randy little dog.
Reproduction wines, counterfeit handbags, forged art, and sham relationships trap Mae in a web of phonies, frauds, and liars—with Kitt the greatest charlatan of them all.
Spies come back from the dead in movies and books, but this isn’t film or fiction. Mae isn’t sure what to believe after a spy loves says, ‘I love you,’ and everything, including her own life, is nothing but a ruse.
Mrs. Martin’s Incomparable Adventure (The Worth Saga #2.75) by Courtney Milan (Mar 26)
Last but certainly not least on my list of recommendations is Courtney Milan’s expertly written novella about two women dancing around 70, righting terrible wrongs and finding forbidden love. In her author’s note, Milan explains the Terrible Nephew is indeed, terrible and sometimes the only way to properly solve a terrible problem is to have lots of terrible suffering befall such a terrible villain. I can feel the catharsis happening in the blurb alone!
Mrs. Bertrice Martin—a widow, some seventy-three years young—has kept her youthful-ish appearance with the most powerful of home remedies: daily doses of spite, regular baths in man-tears, and refusing to give so much as a single damn about her Terrible Nephew.
Then proper, correct Miss Violetta Beauchamps, a sprightly young thing of five and sixty, crashes into her life. The Terrible Nephew is living in her rooming house, and Violetta wants him gone.
Mrs. Martin isn’t about to start giving damns, not even for someone as intriguing as Miss Violetta. But she hatches another plan—to make her nephew sorry, to make Miss Violetta smile, and to have the finest adventure of all time.
If she makes Terrible Men angry and wins the hand of a lovely lady in the process? Those are just added bonuses.