#FiveOnFriday is an original, weekly feature on NightOwlReader.com. Each week I talk about favorite books, anticipated reads, and other bookish topics. Enjoy!
Happy New Year, everyone!
I am so excited about all of the books coming out in January, I may have gotten carried away with my most anticipated list. Last month was all about dark and mind-bending romances, but this month’s theme is heavy on the sports romance.
So, here are my most anticipated romances for January:
Big Rock by Lauren Blakely It's not just the motion of the ocean, ladies. It's definitely the SIZE of the boat too. And I've got both firing on all cylinders. In fact, I have ALL the right assets. Looks, brains, my own money, and a big cock. You might think I'm an asshole. I sound like one, don’t I? I'm hot as sin, rich as heaven, smart as hell and hung like a horse. Guess what? You haven't heard my story before. Sure, I might be a playboy, like the NY gossip rags call me. But I’m the playboy who’s actually a great guy. Which makes me one of a kind. The only trouble is, my dad needs me to cool it for a bit. With conservative investors in town wanting to buy his flagship Fifth Avenue jewelry store, he needs me not only to zip it up, but to look the part of the committed guy. Fine. I can do this for Dad. After all, I’ve got him to thank for the family jewels. So I ask my best friend and business partner to be my fiancée for the next week. Charlotte’s up for it. She has her own reasons for saying yes to wearing this big rock. And pretty soon all this playing pretend in public leads to no pretending whatsoever in the bedroom, because she just can’t fake the kind of toe-curling, window-shattering orgasmic cries she makes as I take her to new heights between the sheets. But I can’t seem to fake that I might be feeling something real for her. What the fuck have I gotten myself into with this…big rock? BIG ROCK is a standalone, dirty romance novel written from the guy’s POV by NYT Bestselling author Lauren Blakely…
January 6th, 2016
Number of Pages: 194
It's not just the motion of the ocean, ladies. It's definitely the SIZE of the boat too.
And I've got both firing on all cylinders. In fact, I have ALL the right assets. Looks, brains, my own money, and a big cock.
You might think I'm an asshole. I sound like one, don’t I? I'm hot as sin, rich as heaven, smart as hell and hung like a horse.
Guess what? You haven't heard my story before. Sure, I might be a playboy, like the NY gossip rags call me. But I’m the playboy who’s actually a great guy. Which makes me one of a kind.
The only trouble is, my dad needs me to cool it for a bit. With conservative investors in town wanting to buy his flagship Fifth Avenue jewelry store, he needs me not only to zip it up, but to look the part of the committed guy. Fine. I can do this for Dad. After all, I’ve got him to thank for the family jewels. So I ask my best friend and business partner to be my fiancée for the next week. Charlotte’s up for it. She has her own reasons for saying yes to wearing this big rock.
And pretty soon all this playing pretend in public leads to no pretending whatsoever in the bedroom, because she just can’t fake the kind of toe-curling, window-shattering orgasmic cries she makes as I take her to new heights between the sheets.
But I can’t seem to fake that I might be feeling something real for her.
What the fuck have I gotten myself into with this…big rock?
BIG ROCK is a standalone, dirty romance novel written from the guy’s POV by NYT Bestselling author Lauren Blakely…
With a blurb like that, what’s not to like? I love a good male point-of-view romance and this one sounds perfect. Big Rock is definitely my most anticipated release of the month!
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The Baller by Vi Keeland The first time I met Brody Easton was in the men’s locker room. Brody Easton was the ultimate player.
January 18th, 2016
Genres: Romance, New Adult, Sports
Number of Pages: 300
It was my first interview as a professional sportscaster.
The famed quarterback decided to bare all.
And by all, I don’t mean he told me any of his secrets.
No. The arrogant ass decided to drop his towel, just as I asked the first question. On camera.
The Super Bowl MVP quickly adopted a new hobby—screwing with me.
When I pushed back, he shifted from wanting to screw with me, to wanting to screw me.
But I don’t date players.
And it’s not because I’m one of the few women working in the world of professional football.
I’d date an athlete.
It’s the other kind of player I don’t date.
You know the type. Good looking, strong, cocky, always looking to get laid.
Every woman wanted to be the one to change him.
But the truth was, all he needed was a girl worth changing for.
Turned out, I was that girl.
Let’s face it. It never is.
There’s a story between once upon a time and happily ever after…
And this one is ours.
The first time I met Brody Easton was in the men’s locker room.
Brody Easton was the ultimate player.
Sports romance–it’s a new favorite of mine. The Hook Up and The Deal were two favorites in 2015, and I can’t get enough. I loved Cocky Bastard (which Vi Keeland co-wrote with Penelope Ward), so The Baller is high on my list for January.
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Pucked Over by Helena Hunting
Series: Pucked #3
Also in this series: Pucked Over, Pucked Under, Pucked Off
January 24th, 2016
Genres: Romance, Sports
Number of Pages: 264
Lily LeBlanc isn’t versed in the art of casual sex, but after seven years in an on-again, off-again relationship, she’s definitely willing to give it a shot. And who better to try it with than her best friend’s boyfriend’s best friend? What could possibly go wrong? Nothing at all.
NHL player, Randy Ballistic, lives up to his last name on the ice and in the bedroom. His best friend and teammate has recently given up the puck bunnies and traded them in for a real girlfriend. And she just happens to have a seriously feisty, extra-hot best friend on the rebound. Randy’s more than happy to be Lily’s spring board back into the dating scene.
Casual sex is only casual until those pesky things called emotions get involved. Once that happens, someone’s bound to gets pucked over.
I loved Pucked, the first book in this series. It’s hilarious, and yes, it’s another sports romance. I liked Pucked Up as well, but I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as Pucked. I am hoping the Pucked Over is as funny as the first book (Pucked), so my expectations are high. (Plus, the main character’s nickname is Randy Balls. Enough said!)
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The Score by Elle Kennedy
Series: Off-Campus #3
Also in this series: The Score
January 11th, 2016
Genres: Romance, Sports
Number of Pages: 249
He knows how to score, on and off the ice
Allie Hayes is in crisis mode. With graduation looming, she still doesn’t have the first clue about what she's going to do after college. To make matters worse, she’s nursing a broken heart thanks to the end of her longtime relationship. Wild rebound sex is definitely not the solution to her problems, but gorgeous hockey star Dean Di-Laurentis is impossible to resist. Just once, though, because even if her future is uncertain, it sure as heck won’t include the king of one-night stands.
It’ll take more than flashy moves to win her over
Dean always gets what he wants. Girls, grades, girls, recognition, girls…he’s a ladies man, all right, and he’s yet to meet a woman who’s immune to his charms. Until Allie. For one night, the feisty blonde rocked his entire world—and now she wants to be friends? Nope. It’s not over until he says it’s over. Dean is in full-on pursuit, but when life-rocking changes strike, he starts to wonder if maybe it’s time to stop focusing on scoring…and shoot for love.
Yes, this is the third sports romance on my list. As I mentioned above, I loved The Deal last year (ok, like, a month ago) and this is the third book in the Off-Campus series. It’s Dean’s story, and seeing someone tame the man-whore sounds like a good reason to read it.
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Happily Ever Ninja by Penny Reid
Series: Knitting in the City #5
Also in this series: Happily Ever Ninja, Dating-ish, Marriage of Inconvenience
January 19th, 2016
Number of Pages: 414
There are three things you need to know about Fiona Archer… I would tell you what they are, but then I’d have to kill you.
But I can tell you that Fiona’s husband—the always irrepressible and often cantankerous Greg Archer—is desperately in love with his wife. He aches for her when they are apart, and is insatiable when they are together. Yet as the years pass, Greg has begun to suspect that Fiona is a ninja. A ninja mom. A ninja wife. A ninja friend. After fourteen years of marriage, Greg is trying not to panic. Because Fiona’s talent for blending in is starting to resemble fading away.
However, when unexpected events mean Fiona must take center stage to keep her family safe, her response stuns everyone—Greg most of all. It seems like Greg’s wish has come true.
When all is said and done, can Greg handle this new version of his wife? Will his irrepressible cantankerousness push her away? Or can the couple find a way forward without either being forced to step back into the shadows?
And now for something entirely different. As you may know, I am a huge fan of Penny Reid. I read Ninja At First Sight, the novella that leads up to Happily Ever Ninja, and loved it. Penny has said that this book makes her a little nervous because it is the least trope-ish book she has written, it is about a long-married couple, it doesn’t have any cheating, etc. However, if it’s written by Penny Reid and it’s as good as the novella, I’m in!
Books also releasing this month that deserve a mention:
Built by Jay Crownover
Series: Saints of Denver #1
Also in this series: Charged, Riveted, Salvaged
January 5th, 2016
Genres: Romance, New Adult
Number of Pages: 400
Sometimes you have to tear everything down to build something new…
Sayer Cole is frozen inside. At least, that’s what it’s felt like for as long as she can remember. She’s yet to let anyone past her icy exterior – and the one guy she thinks might melt her heart couldn’t possibly be interested in someone so uptight.
Rough, hard and hot-as-hell, Zeb Fuller has rebuilt his life and his construction business since protecting his family sent him to jail all those years ago. His elegant client, Sayer, makes him feel like a Neanderthal in denim, but despite the many hints that he’s been dropping to get to know her better, she seems oblivious to his charms.
Just as things finally start to heat up, Zeb’s past comes back to haunt him and he needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. As these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, fire and ice collide in an unstoppable explosion of steam…
Murder by Ella James
Series: Sinful Secrets #2
January 17th, 2016
Let me tell you now: I kill her.
I love Gwenna White more than my life. And still – I'm her demise.
It should have been simple. Easy come, easy go, and in between: atonement.
She was not who I'd have chosen.
Gwen was delicate and lovely: a former model with a ruined life, living loudly in the quiet of the Smoky Mountains, healing injured bears.
When she laid her hands on me, she healed me too.
That's how it began. That's where it went wrong.
I knew she could never be mine. But I sinned.
Sebring by Kristen Ashley
Series: Unfinished Hero #5
January 11th, 2016
Number of Pages: 253
Nick Sebring has issues. Born feeling like an outsider in his own family, growing up under the shadow of a brother who could do anything, Nick isn’t that great of a guy. But when this culminates with Nick lashing out to hurt his brother through the woman he loves, Nick turns inward and makes some decisions about the man he intends to be.
And as he does this, he falls in love and truly learns the man that he’s grown to be.
When his love is murdered right before Nick’s eyes, Nick knows he has to avenge her. He knows how he’s going to avenge her. And he has no qualms using Olivia Shade to exact that vengeance.
Olivia Shade has grown up on the outside of her family too. Her problem is that they don’t want her outside. They want her all the way in, right under their thumbs. She pays the price for seeking escape and learns her lesson—she’ll never see a dawn where she wakes up free.
Then she meets Nick Sebring, and even as she fights it, the hope that died years ago starts to blossom. She can find love. She can have a man of her own. She can be happy. She can be free.
Olivia hopes while Nick schemes.
However, as Nick peels back the layers of all that is Olivia Shade, he finds something surprising. He understands its fragility. He falls in love with its beauty. He seeks to protect it.
But he forgets to protect his Livvie from one thing: Nick Sebring.
Appealed by Emma Chase
January 19th, 2016
Number of Pages: 304
When Brent Mason looks at Kennedy Randolph, he doesn’t see the awkward, sweet girl who grew up next door. He sees a self-assured, stunning woman…who wants to crush the most intimate - and prized - parts of his anatomy beneath the heels of her Christian Louboutins.
Brent has never let the loss of his leg in a childhood accident affect his ability to lead a fulfilling life. He sets high goals–and then he reaches them.
And now he has his sights set on Kennedy.
When Kennedy looks at Brent Mason, all she sees is the selfish, Abercrombie & Fitch catalogue-worthy teenager who humiliated her in high school to join the popular crowd. A crowd that made those years a living hell.
She’s not a lovesick social outcast anymore - she’s a DC prosecutor with a long winning streak behind her. Brent is the opposing attorney in her next case and she thinks it’s time to put him through a little hell of his own.
But things aren’t exactly working out that way.
Because every fiery exchange has her wondering if he’s as passionate in the bedroom as he is in the courtroom. Each argument and objection only makes him want her more. In the end, Brent and Kennedy may just find themselves in love…or in contempt of court.
APPEALED is a sexy, humorous romance about first crushes, second chances and the final verdict of the heart.
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