There’s a bumper haul of fabulous contemporary romances coming up in April with new books from Lucy Parker, Alexa Martin, Helena Hunting, Annabeth Albert and Alyssa Cole;  there’s a new instalment in C.S Harris’  long-running series of historical mysteries featuring her aristocratic detective, Sebastian St. Cyr, the conclusion to a fabulous trilogy of paranormal mysteries and new historical romances from Madeline Hunter, Cat Sebastian and Grace Burrowes… there should be something for everyone here, and then some!  Here’s what AAR staffers are looking forward to reading in April; drop by and tell us what new releases are going to make you all *grabby hands* over the coming weeks!

The Austen Playbook by Lucy Parker (22 Apr)

Each of her books has felt unique, and yet they’re all equally good. I can’t wait for what’s coming next. – Alex A.

An actress and a critic and a fancy country house and a live viewer-interactive Austen TV event??? I can’t wait to see how this comes together.- Caroline

Lucy Parker is a rare contemporary romance must-read for me. I admit I wasn’t as wowed by Making Up as I was by the first two books in the London Celebrities series, but then she has set the bar very high;) And I’m totally here for this frenemies-to-lovers story involving a successful stage actress and the icy-cold theatre critic. Bring it on! – Caz

I’ve enjoyed each of Ms. Parker’s previous novels in the London Celebrities series, but I’m still waiting for her to top Act Like It. I thought the last book, Making Up, lacked the humor and sophistication of the earlier books, and I’m hopeful this one will be the best of the lot. Early reviews have VERY good things to say about it…and I’m looking forward to it. – Em

I adore Lucy Parker’s books and haven’t been disappointed by a single one yet.- Haley

I love, love, love Lucy Parker’s books. Every year she has had a book coming out, it has immediately zoomed to the top of my most anticipated books list. This year is no different. – Keira

Like other reviewers at AAR, Lucy Parker is on my auto-read list due to her previous contemporary romances that quickly have become favorites. It doesn’t really matter what the synopsis of this one is, I’m planning to read it! – Maria Rose

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Fumbled by Alexa Martin (23 Apr)

Martin has been an author I’ve been dying to read after hearing so much praise for her book last year. Two high school sweethearts meet again after many years but with closely-held secrets and heartbreak between them. I’m a fan of second chances, and this sounds like it will be very good. – Keira

Add my voice to those of my colleagues – I’m ready for this one! – Kristen

Poppy’s story continues Martin’s series about the Denver Mustangs football team and the women who love them. – Lisa

I enjoyed the first book by this author and am looking forward to seeing how she handles a sophmore effort – Maggie

I loved Intercepted which ended up on my top ten list of romances for 2018. As such, anything Alexa Martin puts out in the future is on my radar, including this upcoming football romance. I hope it’s as good as the first one in the series! – Maria Rose

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

A Prince on Paper by Alyssa Cole

A European “red-headed step-prince” who uses the spotlight to help his heir brother – sounds like fun! – Caroline

Cole’s Reluctant Royals series returns once more, spotlighting Johan and Nya’s story!  It’s can’t-miss! – Lisa

I’ve really been enjoying this unique contemporary romance series by Alyssa Cole, with A Princess in Theory making my top ten list of romances in 2018. I knew when I saw that this was part of the series that it would be on my to-read list. – Maria Rose

I loved Cole’s A Duke by Default and am excited to read the next book in her Reluctant Royals series. – Maggie

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Who Slays the Wicked by C.S. Harris (2 Apr)

I’m a massive fan of this series, which has been consistently enjoyable throughout thirteen books and is, incredibly, getting even better as we approach the end. The murder victim in this book was an out-and-out villain in a previous one so it would appear he got what was coming to him.  But in Sebastian St. Cyr’s world, nothing is ever that simple… – Caz

I never want this series to end. Everything about the St. Cyr mysteries is excellent – the complicated mysteries, the world-building, the writing, the characters, the historical detail…I could go on and on. Wicked Lord Ashford finally get his just desserts – but who killed him? Friends, I’m glad he’s dead…and I’m looking forward to finding out who killed him (I hope he suffered!). I’m happy to spend more time in this wonderful world.- Em

I am a huge fan of the St. Cyr series. I have faithfully followed the books year after year from the very first one. The author really knows how to delve deep into the historical era to create the perfect atmosphere for her mysteries. I am eager to know how this story will unfold for the victim seems to deserve it on the surface of it, but with Harris there is always a twist or two. – Keira

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Meet Cute by Helena Hunting (9 Apr)

These days, I seem to be drawn to contemporary rom-coms. Hunting has been compared to Helen Hoang and this is one of the hottest books of this year. The heroine literally falls on the former famous actor she used to sigh over in her teens and fangirls all over him. But he ends up breaking her heart. How will their relationship recover? I’m looking forward to finding out. – Keira

I like the cover, the title, and the description of the ‘not so cute’ meet cute for this one. I haven’t read Helena Hunting before so I’m eager to give this author a try. – Maria Rose

I can’t find anything I’m not excited about here – I’ve liked a lot of Hunting’s past work, the meet cute in this one sounds delightful, and I’m very much in the mood for romcoms. – Kristen

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Thrown to the Wolves by Charlie Adhara (1 Apr)

Charlie Adhara’s début series has been a real triumph, boasting complex, tightly constructed plots, excellent world-building, two fabulous, engaging central characters and a steamy romance. This is the final book – and the big draw is finally getting to find out more about the enigmatic Oliver Park. – Caz

One of the best romantic suspense/shifter series I’ve had the pleasure to read, Big Bad Wolf, has (hopefully) saved its best for last: Oliver’s story! An enigma to readers – and his lover Cooper – Oliver has played his cards close to the chest as the series has unfolded. I’m excited to learn more about him, and for these two to get the happily ever after they so richly deserve. – Em

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Arctic Sun by Annabeth Albert (1 Apr)

The first in a new series by Annabeth Albert – I don’t even need to know what it’s about; I’m in.- Caz

I hated saying goodbye to the Out of Uniform series but it was good news when Ms. Albert announced she had a new series in the works. The opposites attract trope is one of my favorites and I’m looking forward to this match up: A rugged outdoorsman and a male model. I’m excited to see how Ms. Albert makes this duo work… and looking forward to another long running Albert series.- Em

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

When a Duchess Says I Do by Grace Burrowes (2 Apr)

This is the second book in Grace Burrowes’ Rogues to Riches series. The first book of the series – My One and Only Duke – earned a DIK last year. Grace Burrowes has run hot and cold for me. I did like the Windham series but not some that followed. I’m looking forward to giving this a try! – Evelyn

I really enjoyed My One and Only Duke, the first book in this series about a rough-and-tumble but rich family elevated unexpectedly to the peerage. I’m excited to read the sequel about a supporting character I loved (but whom I won’t name because he was a suspect in the crime in book 1).- Caroline

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

We’re also looking forward to…


Repeat by Kylie Scott (7 Apr)

A second-chance romance involving a head injury and amnesia. Raise your hand if that didn’t make YOU curious!

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo



The Doctor’s Secret by Heidi Cullinan (23 Apr)

Having enjoyed a few books in this author’s backlist in audio format, I’m keen to jump into this new series of medical romances – a genre I don’t read much now, but on which I cut my romance-reading teeth when I was a teen!

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Never Deny a Duke by Madeline Hunter (30 Apr)

Although the last book in the Decadent Dukes series proved to be a disappointment, I’m a fan of the author’s and am hoping for a return to form in this final book in the trilogy which sees the tightly controlled Duke of Brentworth meeting his match in the form of a young woman who is completely unimpressed by him. Yeah. He’s toast. – Caz

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo


The Key to Happily Ever After by Tif Marcelo

A rom-com about a family-run wedding business? Take my money! I enjoy witty books, not slapstick comedy, but well-written humor. This book promises to be that by a new-to-me author who I’m eager to try.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo


A Duke in Disguise by Cat Sebastian (16 Apr)

It’s the story of a scandalous novelist and the illustrator who loves her, and it sounds like a lot of fun.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Serious Moonlight by Jenn Bennett (16 Apr)

A very charming-sounding YA about two mystery book affectionados falling in love while solving a puzzle and working at a hotel over the summer.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Little Darlings by Melanie Golding (30 Apr)
This sounds like a truly chilling tale – an exhausted mother looks away for two seconds and her newborn twins disappear – and, when they are found, seem to be entirely different children, though only she notices.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

Maria Rose:

The Takeover Effect by Nisha Sharma

The cover on this one is hot! But it’s also the synopsis that has attracted me to new-to-me author Nisha Sharma. Writing about a family with roots in Punjab, The Singh Family Trilogy promises an interesting mix of family loyalty, business and romance. I”m looking forward to reading book one of the series.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo


The Savior by J.R. Ward (2 Apr)

A new installment in J.R. Ward’s fabulous Black Dagger Brotherhood series is always a cause for celebration. This book promises to be especially angsty, since it features a character who has been in hiding for hundreds of years. I can’t wait to see how things turn out.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

I Know Who You Are by Alice Feeny (30 Apr)

I adored the author’s debut thriller, Sometimes I Lie, and I’m super excited to see what her second book will be like. The plot looks compelling, and I’m hoping for great things.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

The Rose by Tiffany Reisz (16 Apr)

Tiffany Reisz has been on my list of auto-buy authors since I first discovered her back in 2014. Her writing is both lush and sexy, and I absolutely adore her multi-faceted characters. Needless to say, I’m incredibly excited to read The Rose, which is the follow-up to 2018’s The Red.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

King of Fools by Amanda Foody (30 Apr)

Amanda Foody has written two of my favorite young adult fantasy novels. Her worlds are dark and dangerous, and the characters who populate them practically leap off the pages and into my heart. King of Fools is the second book in her Shadow Game series, and I can’t wait to see how things turn out for our hero and heroine.

Buy it at: Amazon/Apple Books/Barnes & Noble/Kobo

PLEASE NOTE: This is not a comprehensive list of available titles, just a selection made by AAR reviewers according to their personal tastes.  Purchase links are given where available at time of writing.

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Queer romance, romantic suspense and historicals - romance, mysteries, fiction -  are my genres of choice these days, and when I haven't got my nose in a book, I’ve got my ears in one.  I’m a huge fan of audiobooks and am rarely to be found without my earbuds in.