Coming Soon… November 2017

It’s not all that often that there’s a hands-down favourite when it comes to a post like this, but a new book from Loretta Chase is a red-letter day on any romance reader’s calendar and many of us here have put a big red circle around 28th November, which is when her latest release, A Duke in Shining Armor is hitting the shelves and our e-readers. Also coming in November is the next in Mary Balogh’s Westcott series, Someone to Wed, along with Loreth Anne White’s next Angie Pallorino novel and the next instalment – Undercover Attraction – in another favourite series, Katee Robert’s The O’Malleys.

Whatever your preference, there’s a lot to look forward to in November, ready to curl up with on those long, cold winter evenings.

What are you most looking forward to reading in the weeks ahead? Drop by and let us know in the comments.


Are You Now Or Have You Ever Been Japanese American?

Today we feature something a little different. A friend of mine, Eric Muller, has created a podcast I think is wonderful. It’s called Scapegoat Cities and features human stories behind the Japanese American Internment. I asked Eric if any of his stories featured love affairs. The most recent one, Are You Now or Have You Ever Been Japanese American?, (kinda) does. I loved the podcast and I think you will too. But first, here’s a bit about Eric and his work.


Dabney: Give me some background here. How did you get interested in the internment?

Eric: I’m a professor at UNC Chapel Hill, in the law school, and have been studying and writing about the mass removal and imprisonment of Japanese Americans for the past 20 years. I first began learning about this historical episode when I lived and taught in Wyoming, which was the site of one of the ten […]

By | 2017-10-03T16:13:54+00:00 October 4th, 2017|Categories: Dabney AAR, Interviews|Tags: , |4 Comments

An interview with Jennie Melamed

This summer two of our reviewers reviewed Jennie Melamed’s debut novel, Gather the Daughters. In her DIK review, Kristen wrote:

Gather the Daughters is a haunting tale of a society where women are controlled but children are free, and a young woman on the cusp of that transition discovers something that pulls her ideological foundations out from under her. It’s perhaps not for the faint of heart, but will definitely appeal to  fans of engrossing dystopian fiction that lingers in the memory.

I reached out to Ms. Melamed and asked if she’d be willing to discuss the book.* She graciously said yes.


Dabney: I was on vacation with my large extended family when I read Gather the Daughters. It was a fascinating yet challenging book to read while surrounded by my clamorous and close clan. The book is… well, let me ask you. How would you describe this book?

Jennie: Gather the Daughters […]

By | 2017-09-25T08:30:03+00:00 September 25th, 2017|Categories: Authors, Dabney AAR, Interviews|Tags: |0 Comments

Coming Soon… September 2017

While we AAR staffers have fairly diverse tastes on the whole, there are some books and authors that pull us together for various reason – we like the authors, we like their writing, we like their storytelling – and into genres that sometimes we don’t read very often.  This month, the big draws appear to be historicals, with new titles from Sherry Thomas, Katharine Ashe and Juliana Grey all eagerly awaited by many of us.


A Conspiracy in Belgravia by Sherry Thomas (5 Sept)

I was fairly bowled over by A Study in Scarlet Women and am sure this second instalment in the Lady Sherlock series won’t disappoint.  Our heroine is approached by the wife of her dearest friend  to find the man she loved years before… but there’s bound to be a lot more to it than meets the eye!  – Caz

I know I’m not the only AAR staffer […]

Coming Soon… August 2017

AAR staffers have taken a good look at the wealth of new books being published in August and decided which ones are most likely to make the biggest dents in our bank balances! Joanna Bourne is at the top of several of our lists, closely followed by Tessa Dare, Shana Galen, Layla Reyne and K.J Charles, among others. Here are the books we’re most looking forward to reading next month. How about you? Do you agree with our choices or think we’ve missed out on something really good? Jump into the discussion in the comments.


Beauty Like the Night by Joanna Bourne (1 Aug)

Um. It’s a new book in the Spymasters series by Joanna Bourne.  Surely I don’t need to say anything else?! – Caz

Joanna Bourne. That is all. If there’s a stronger series than her Spymasters, I […]

Coming Soon… in June

It’s time to look ahead to see what books we’re most excited about reading in June. As usual, we’ve a wide variety of choices, although it seems there’s a bit of a consensus about our most looked-forward-to new releases, K.J. Charles’ An Unnatural Vice and Sarah MacLean’s The Day of the Duchess. What are YOU looking forward to reading next month?


An Unnatural Vice by K.J. Charles (June 6)

As a big fan of both K.J. Charles and the Victorian Sensation Fiction which has inspired this series, I can’t wait to read this story of the battle of wits between a former-lawyer-turned-journalist and the man he suspects of being a sham spiritualist. The author’s ability to imbue her stories with a strong sense of time and space is superb, and I do love a good enemies-to-lovers romance. – Caz

I loved An Unseen Attraction (book one​ in the Sins of the Cities series) and ​I ​was intrigued by the characters​ […]

Is Hot the new Warm?

One of the things readers consistently tell us they like are our sensuality ratings. They’ve been a part of AAR since its inception and we think they help readers find books they love. We’ve not revised them, however, in quite some time and, with the trend towards more sex and more graphic sex in romance, we feel we may need to.

Here are our current definitions:

Kisses: Kisses only. Many of these books are quite simply “sweet.”

Subtle: No explicit sensuality. Kissing and touching, but physical romance is described in general terms or implied. The emphasis is on how lovemaking made the characters feel emotionally, and not on graphic description.

Warm: Moderately explicit sensuality. Physical details are described, but are not graphically depicted. Much is left to the reader’s imagination.

Hot: More explicit sensuality. Sex is described in more graphic terms. Hot books typically have more sex scenes and are more likely to depict acts beyond intercourse.<

Burning: Extremely explicit sensuality – these books are often erotic romances or flatout erotica.

We’ve thought about […]

By | 2017-06-23T08:29:59+00:00 May 18th, 2017|Categories: Dabney AAR|39 Comments

Rereading Elizabeth Essex’s Dartmouth Brides

In 2011, I read the first of Elizabeth Essex’s Dartmouth Brides books, The Pursuit of Pleasure. This is Ms. Essex’s debut novel and, especially for a first book, quite good. In my B review I wrote:

I liked James and Lizzie but had a hard time understanding why they made the choices they did. James, in the name of his work, allows Lizzie to suffer tremendously while claiming to love her. Lizzie, bedazzled by sex with James and still hell-bent on being independent, behaves in ways that are at times unsympathetic and flat-out self-destructive. And for all the thinking they do about each other — and Ms. Essex spends a good deal of time relating her characters’ thoughts — neither really sees the other very clearly until, perhaps, the end of the novel. This lack of unambiguous relationship development combined with too little information about their pasts left me feeling unsatisfied. I wanted more […]

By | 2017-06-23T08:30:00+00:00 April 8th, 2017|Categories: Dabney AAR, Re-reading|Tags: , , |1 Comment

A DIKlassic Bookclub: Thumbs up or thumbs down?

As part of our site reboot, we’ve been publishing DIKLassic reviews. These are books that, in the past (at least five years), were DIKs–this means they got an A-, an A, or an A+. I typically pick books that are on sale–I shoot for 3.99 or less for an ebook.

These reviews have been popular and AAR readers often comment on them that they loved being reminded of books they’d forgotten about.

I thought it might be fun to start a bimonthly (every two months) DIKlassic bookclub. We’d suggest a book and then, two months later, chat about it in the comments.

What do you think? And, if you think it’s a good idea, what would you like to read?

 

By | 2017-06-23T08:30:00+00:00 April 6th, 2017|Categories: Dabney AAR, DIK, DIKlassic|35 Comments

Megan Crane talks about the Edge series. And there’s a giveaway!

From the moment I read the opening lines of Edge of Obsession, the first book in Megan Crane’s Edge series, I was hooked.

A hundred years ago, or so the stories went, the great Storms came over the course of a few tumultuous decades and kicked the world’s ass. Cities fell. Seas rose. People died.

A lot of people.

I’ve read all four books in the series including the soon to be released Edge of Power (Wulf’s story!) and relished them all. These books are deceptively addicting, the sort of stories you tear through and keep thinking about when you’re done. The world-building is satisfyingly rich and pulls no punches. I asked Megan if I could ask her some questions and she, thankfully, said yes.


Dabney: Hi Megan, thanks for talking with me.

I’ve so enjoyed your Edge series. I picked the first book in the series, Edge of Obsession, as […]

By | 2017-06-23T08:30:00+00:00 February 24th, 2017|Categories: Authors, Dabney AAR, giveaways, Interviews|Tags: , , , , |20 Comments