October… the nights are drawing in, the days are getting cooler (in the Northern Hemisphere at least) and as we all know, there’s nothing better on those chilly, dark evenings than curling up with a good book. This time of year is traditionally one for lots and LOTS of new releases, and AAR staffers are here to point you all in the direction of the books we think are going to be the best bets for some great reads over the coming weeks. As usual, we’d love to hear from YOU as to what you’re most looking forward to reading in October.

Royal Holiday by Jasmine Guillory (1 Oct)

The mother of a makeup artist travels to England with her daughter and falls in love with a senior member of palace staff. Hooray for older love! – Caroline

I look forward to reading stories featuring older couples. And combine that with British Royalty!  – Keira

Jasmine Guillory has blessed us twice this year; while The Wedding Party was a lot of fun, I’m so excited for Royal Holiday, which features an older heroine (mother of the heroine from TWP) who falls for the queen’s private secretary when her daughter’s brought to London to style one of the members of the royal family.  – Lisa

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

The Awakening of Miss Henley by Julia Justiss (1 Oct)

Julia Justiss has provided me with a number of good reads over the past few years (and some DIKs), so I’ll definitely be picking up her latest novel. – Caz

Julia Justiss has delivered a steady stream of good HRs lately and I’m looking forward to this one about a lady on her sixth season hoping to finally be allowed to leave the marriage mart and pursue her own interests. And maybe learn about love outside of marriage. – Evelyn

I enjoy Julia Justiss’s writing and look forward to her books. – Keira

Julia Justiss has indeed become a reliable author for me, and the premise feels unique enough to excite me! –  Lisa

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

American Love Story by Adrianna Herrera (7 Oct)

I confess I’ve read an advance copy of this (for review) and it’s superb. Two characters who, in some ways, couldn’t be more unalike, are strongly drawn together, and have to work out how to be together given one of them is part of the system the other despises.  It’s thoughtful and sexy, the characters are engaging and the relationships extremely well-written.  It’s another winner for Adriana Herrera. – Caz

I really liked Herrera’s first two books in this series: American Dreamer and American Fairytale; the first is going to go on my Best Books of 2019 list. So I am really looking forward to this third story. – Keira

Herrera writes consistently good, diverse, romance and I’m looking forward to her new one – Lisa

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

The Play by Elle Kennedy (7 Oct)

I enjoyed the first two books in this series, and this one seems just as much fun. A reformed playboy and a friend-to-lovers romance set against the backdrop of college hockey. – Alex A.

I love Elle Kennedy’s college set series so there was no question that I’d be ready to put the latest Briar U novel on my to-read shelf! – Maria Rose

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

Getting Played by Emma Chase (8 Oct) – Caroline, Lisa

Chase writes hot contemporaries, and I enjoyed her first book in this series, Getting Schooled. This one is about a single mom whose fling with a drummer comes back in the fall when it turns out the drummer is her son’s math teacher. – Caroline

Emma Chase knows how to balance sensuality with realism, and this book sounds like no exception – Lisa

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

Faker by Sarah Smith (8 October)

An office (power tool company) romance by a debut author. The cheeky cover hooked me first. – Charlotte

I’m a sucker for enemies-to-lovers stories! And, I’m very much drawn to multicultural characters, especially women who infiltrate a “man’s world. Faker by début author Sarah Smith checks all boxes. Emmie is surrounded by male co-workers at Nuts & Bolts power tool company. One in particular, Tate, is particularly hostile toward Emmie. When they are forced to work together on a charity construction project, the wall between them begins to crumble. Can’t wait to read! 💋 – Liz

A construction company full of rough, burly men? Enemies to lovers rom-com? Sold! – Maria Rose

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

A Match Made for Thanksgiving by Jackie Lau (8 Oct)

I like holiday stories about holidays other than Christmas, so Thanksgiving (Canadian, no less!) with the Wongs sounds like a lot of fun. Especially when Nick finds out his mother has invited his latest one-night stand – but as a date for Nick’s brother! – Caroline

I love Jackie Lau’s work, and I am so glad she is a fast writer. Looking forward to this story. – Keira

Jackie Lau’s fresh, funny contemps have been a delight.  I’m so here for a Canadian Thanksgiving book! – Lisa

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

The Art of Theft by Sherry Thomas (15 October)

I will always read Sherry Thomas. Her third Charlotte Holmes was terrific, and I’ve already heard great buzz about this fourth. – Caroline

It’s Sherry Thomas. I don’t need to know anything else to be chomping at the bit! – Caz

More Charlotte Holmes all but guarantees that I’ll be front row center for her fourth mystery!  – Lisa

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

Regency Royal Navy Christmas by Carla Kelly (15 Oct) –


This sounds like a great little Christmas romance anthology – Lisa

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


Gilded Cage by KJ Charles (23 Oct)

A must have. KJ Charles’ stylish, accurate writing means any novel of hers will be enjoyable, the narrative intriguing and the characters colourful and easy to empathise with – BJ.

I loved Any Old Diamonds and may have squealed with delight when I learned that the fabulous Susan Lazarus was to get a book of her own in this sequel. – Caz

This is on my must-read list. – Keira

It’s KJ Charles, y’know it’s gonna be good! – Lisa

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

Angel in a Devil’s Arms by Julie Anne Long (29 Oct)

Nothing gets me more excited about a new book than finding out it’s about an awesome secondary character from a previous novel. Lady Derring Takes a Lover showed Long at her best, so I have high hopes for this one! – Alexandra

This book follows Lady Derring Takes a Lover, which I enjoyed – but in which I liked Angelique more than Lady Derring. So I’m excited for her book! – Caroline

With historical romance really languishing in the doldrums at the moment, Julie Anne Long’s return to the genre with the excellent Lady Derring Takes a Lover was very welcome, and I have high hopes of Angelique in this second book in the Palace of Rogues series. – Caz

Lucien Durand, Lord Bolt rises from the ashes to claim revenge upon those who left him for dead by tossing him into the Thames – and along the way, falls in love with independent miss Angelique Breedlove while staying at the same boarding house she’s also occupying.  People are calling this one just as funny and bright as Long’s other work, so I’m excited to try it! – Lisa

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

We’re also looking forward to…


The Never Tilting World by Rin Chupeco (15 Oct)

A fantasy about twin sisters/goddesses separated into out-of-balance worlds, one always night and one forever day, and an aesthetic marketing calls ‘Frozen meets Mad Max’ but the author says to her feels more like ‘Mad Max meets Avatar the Last Airbender’, with diverse representation of sexualities. Everything there sounds absolutely fascinating!

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


Declination by Gregory Ashe (12 October)

Gregory Ashe has quickly become one of my favourite authors of romantic suspense/mysteries, and fortunately for me, not only is he fairly prolific, he’s also really good!  Complex, well-conceived plotlines, engaging characters, plenty of snark and wonderfully-written central relationships are among his hallmarks and I can’t wait to find out how the series plotline is going to play out. – Caz

Buy it at: Amazon

This Earl of Mine by Kate Bateman (23 Oct)

I’ve really enjoyed Ms. Bateman’s books in the past – a change of publisher seems to have caused a change of name, from K.C. to Kate – and am keen to jump into this first in a new series, in which an heiress marries a condemmed convict, never expecting to see him again.  Er. Oops? – Caz

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


The Matchmaker’s Mistletoe Mission by Jaci Burton (15 Oct)

One city girl + one Oklahoma rancher + one snowstorm + Christmas = what sounds like a Hallmark movie as a book, and I’m here for it.

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

Twice in a Blue Moon by Christina Lauren (22 Oct)

I’ve heard too many good things about Christina Lauren from readers I respect not to be excited about this one, in which a rising movie star reunites with her first love.

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


Summer Heat by Jill Sanders (22 Oct) – Lisa

Three brothers come to a summer hotel to seek jobs but have secret motives.  The Wildflowers – a group of female friends who run the hotel – keep an eye on the three strangers.  A little bit of late summer heat!

Buy it at: Amazon

The Devil in the Saddle by Julia London (29 Oct)

A socialite and wannabe ballerina seeks revenge on her fiance – only to run afoul of the handsome ranch hand she grew up with.  This sounds really charming!

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


The Widow of Rose House by Diana Biller (8 Oct)

As a gothic romance fangirl, I am super excited to read The Widow of Rose House by début author Diana Biller. The year is 1875. Alva Webster returns to New York to start anew after her husband’s death. While restoring the reportedly haunted Liefdehuis mansion, Alva teams up with a handsome, eccentric professor to solve the mysteries of the house. And, of course, love blooms between the two. *sigh*

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

Maria Rose:

Hard Chrome by Vanessa North (21 Oct)

This upcoming romance by Vanessa North, set in a classic car shop with an enemies to lovers theme hits all the right buttons for me. It’s the start of what looks to be a promising series.

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

Sergeant’s Christmas Siege by Megan Crane (29 Oct)

I’ve been enjoying this Alaskan set romantic suspense series by Megan Crane. I’ll be curious to see how she blends danger and drama into a Christmas themed story.

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


Ribbons of Scarlett by Kate Quinn et al (1 Oct)

Can six well-known historical fiction authors sit down and write a book together? I don’t know the answer right now, but when Ribbons of Scarlet is released on October 1, I fully intend to find out. It’s set during the French Revolution, and it tells the stories of six different women whose lives are impacted by the struggle for equality. The premise excites me, and I’m familiar with the work of some of the authors involved, so I’m hoping for great things.

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

The Shape of Night by Tess Gerritsen (1 Oct)

It feels like forever since Tess Gerritsen wrote her last standalone novel, so I was elated to learn The Shape of Night would be out this fall. I’m a big fan of the author’s previous work, and I’m confident this will be another outstanding piece of fiction.

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

The Last True Poets of the Sea by Julia Drake (1 Oct)

This is a YA romance between two teenaged girls, and I couldn’t be more excited for it to come out. It looks like exactly the kind of sweet, dreamy read I would have devoured as a teenager, and I can’t wait to see if my first impressions are correct.

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

The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes (8 Oct)

To be honest, I strongly disliked the wildly popular Me Before You and I haven’t picked up another of Moyes’ books since I read that one, but the synopsis of her latest novel, Giver of Stars, thoroughly intrigued me. It tells the story of a group of packhorse librarians who delivered books to the poorest residents of the Appalachians, and I’m super excited to get my hands on a copy.

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

Shattered Bonds by Faith Hunter (29 Oct)

I’m not at all current with this series, only having read the first eight books so far, but I’m so glad the author is continuing to spend time with this fascinating and enigmatic heroine. This is a world unlike any other in today’s urban fantasy, making this series one of my favorites. Plus, the heroine shares her body with an extraordinary mountain lion named Beast, and for a cat enthusiast like me, that’s pretty great.

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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