Ride the High Lonesome by Rosanne BittnerWyoming Territory, 1869: Stranded in outlaw country, Kate Winters, the sole survivor of an Oregon-bound wagon train, saves the life of Luke Bowden, who was attacked and left for dead by the same bandits who killed her traveling companions.
What happens next: Love blossoms as Kate and Luke undertake a treacherous journey across unforgiving terrain, but Luke's desire for vengeance threatens to tear the couple apart.
Series alert: Ride the High Lonesome is the 1st book in the Outlaw Trail series.
Love Lettering by Kate ClaybornWhat happens: A year after calligrapher Meg Mackworth inserts a hidden message ("M-I-S-T-A-K-E") into a wedding program, the former groom -- quantitative analyst Reid Sutherland -- shows up demanding to know how Meg knew his relationship was doomed.
Why you might like it: In addition to a sweet, slow-burning romance, this engaging novel serves as a love letter to New York City, while offering a fun glimpse into the world of fonts and lettering.
Sweet Talkin' Lover by Tracey LivesayHer story: Caila Harris has her eye on the C-suite of the cosmetics company where she works, which means heading to Bradleton, Virginia, to shut down an unprofitable factory. No hot mayor is going to stand in the way of a well-deserved promotion!
His story: Wyatt Bradley, a.k.a. "Mayor McHottie," knows that the factory is crucial to the town's economic survival. Surely he can convince the beautiful Chicago businesswoman to keep it open.
Why you might like it: Sympathetic protagonists from very different backgrounds find common ground and a happily-ever-after in this 1st Girls' Trip novel, which introduces four African American college friends.
Blitzed by Alexa MartinThe situation: NFL player Maxwell Lewis has a huge crush on Brynn Larson, owner of popular Denver bar HERS. But while Brynn likes shy, polite Maxwell, she doesn't want the drama that comes with dating a professional athlete.
Reviewers say: "so good, you could name a drink after it" (Booklist).
Media buzz: Denver Mustangs fans, rejoice! A television adaptation of the Playbook series is currently in development.
The Cost of Honor by Diana Muñoz StewartStarring: Tony Parish, the sole male member of the League of Warrior Women vigilante family; and entrepreneur Honor Silva, who gets caught up in a whirlwind of danger and passion after she saves Tony's life.
Read it for: "tantalizing intrigue, effective red herrings, and red-hot romance" (Publishers Weekly).
Is it for you? Set in Dominica, this intricately plotted 3rd book in the Black Ops Confidential romantic suspense series includes a human trafficking subplot and mentions of child abuse.
Room Service by Rochelle AlersIntroducing: Jasmine Washington, a divorcée with excellent taste in food but terrible taste in men...until she meets Cameron Singleton.
What happens: While Jasmine is happy to accompany the suave bachelor banker to the Big Easy's finest restaurants, she's not looking for anything serious. And then things get serious.
Why you might like it: This 3rd book in Rochelle Alers' Innkeeper series boasts a diverse cast of mature women, a gentle interracial romance between 40-something leads, and appetizing descriptions of food.
Sweet Heat by Zuri DayWhat it's about: Marvin Carter faces off against Naomi Carson in a high-stakes televised cooking contest. Despite instant mutual attraction, these aspiring chefs are determined to keep their eyes on the prize.
Read it for: quick-witted leads who trade flirtatious insults, a steamy rivals-to-lovers story, and mouth-watering descriptions of food.
About the author: Zuri Day is no stranger to culinary romance: in addition to this 3rd Blue Collar Lovers book, she's written two other novels starring up-and-coming chefs with big dreams: What Love Tastes Like and French Quarter Kisses.
Savor You by Kristen ProbyStarring: Mia Palazzo, the culinary genius behind Seduction, Portland's hottest restaurant, and her old flame, celebrity chef Camden Sawyer.
What happens: Reunited on the set of a TV cooking show, Mia and Camden face off in the kitchen as they rekindle their relationship -- and finally address the issues that drove them apart.
Series alert: Savor You is the 5th book in the Fusion series, about five friends who open run a high-end restaurant. Start with Listen to Me.
The Coincidence of Coconut Cake by Amy E. ReichertWhat happens: Shortly after chef Lou Johnson discovers that her fiancé is cheating on her, notorious restaurant critic A.W. Wodyski publishes a scathing review of Lou's struggling Milwaukee restaurant.
But wait, there's more: Lou finds a friend in British transplant Al Waters. However, between exploring the city together and falling in love, Al has trouble finding the right moment to reveal that he's Wodyski.
For fans of: You've Got Mail; upbeat romances with a strong sense of place; delicious cakes.
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