No matter how confident we are in our writing, a glimpse of what the publishers are enjoying is always welcome. No need to dig out your telescope! We've editors from Carina Press, HarperImpulse and Bold Strokes Books giving you the Industry Insight.
The Carina Press Editorial Team
Arctic Sun by Annabeth Albert
Arctic Sun by Annabeth Albert is the first in a new, Alaska-set series. Ex-military mountain man Griffin Barrett likes his solitude. It keeps him from falling back into old habits—bad habits. However, his gig as a wildlife guide presents a new kind of temptation—in super-hot supermodel River Vale—and nothing in the Alaskan wilderness has ever called to Griffin so badly.
The Austen Playbook by Lucy Parker
This highly anticipated next book from Lucy Parker features Freddy Carlton, a West End actor trying desperately to live up to her family’s theatrical legacy, and Griff, the acerbic theatre critic who seems eager to make her life difficult.
I was delighted to learn that this book takes place at an English country estate—a crumbling one, at that. A Jane Austen-themed whodunit in an esteemed manor house is the perfect stage for Lucy’s warm wit, and readers will love the opposites-attract sparks between Freddy and Griff.
American Dreamer by Adriana Herrera
Dominican-born author Adriana Herrera got tired of waiting for someone to write a romance about people who looked, spoke, and loved like her. So she wrote one. And we’re incredibly lucky to be publishing it. American Dreamer is the first book in a brand new series and it’s truly a delicious debut—Nesto Vazquez moves to Ithaca, NY, bringing mouthwatering Afro-Caribbean food to the town via his food truck. The romance is by turns hot, funny, and emotional, and the sense of family—both natural and found—is what made American Dreamer a runaway hit with our team.
New Ink on Life by Jennie Davids
In this contemporary lesbian romance our team has been eager to share with the world, Jennie Davids tells the story of MJ, a bristly tattoo parlor owner and artist, and Cassie, a cancer survivor and MJ’s new apprentice. Lyrical, descriptive writing entrances from page one while their working relationship develops naturally and beautifully into a breathtaking, emotional romance.
Down & Dirty by Rhenna Morgan
The latest book in the Men of Haven series from Rhenna Morgan brings us Axel McKee, a sexy Scot who left his musical career behind years ago in favor of becoming a power player on the music scene. When he meets Lizzy—a performing powerhouse, a woman whose presence leaps off the stage and into the hearts of anyone who watches her sing—the chemistry between the two is off the charts hot.
Flare Up by Shannon Stacey
The men of Boston Fire are back! This reunion romance brings Stacey’s signature mix of humor and heart, as firefighter Grant Cutter is called to assist the one woman he’s never been able to forget… Readers new to Shannon Stacey’s work will love this protective hero and the heroine who turns his life upside down.
Play it Again by Aidan Wayne
Everything about Play It Again, featuring a blind Seattle-based YouTuber and the Irish gamer he falls in love with, is charming and fun; Dovid and Sam’s story is love for the modern world—online, long-distance, and genuine.
Writing Her In by Holley Trent
Holley Trent excels at writing nuanced, complex relationships while providing plenty of steamy romance. This standout polyamorous romance that will have you glued to your ereader is no exception. Love comes in all forms, and the love between Stacia, Dara and Adrien is as compelling as it is unique.
Check out Carina Press' Submission Guidelines, and What the Editors Want for more details about writing for them. The most recent addition to Carina's stable is Carina Adores, described as "trope-driven" LGBTQ+. For more information about their books, check out their website and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.
The Bold Strokes Books Editorial Team
Bold Strokes Books has dozens of queer romances coming in 2019, and here’s a tease of just some of the titles we have in store. Find them all at http://www.boldstrokesbooks.com.
Aurora Rey’s foodie romance, Recipe for Love: A Farm-to-Table Romance (April 2019), is a butch-femme lesbian romance between a small-town country farmer and a big-city chef that flips the script, just a bit (the femme drives the tractor; the butch hates getting her shoes muddy). Hannah Little is a farmer with little use for fancy chefs or trendy restaurants, but if her farm is to survive, she’ll have to get past her disdain. A contract with a local farm-to-table restaurant is exactly what she needs. And that means working closely with Drew Davis, a big-city chef with an ego the size of New York City. Drew is ready to run her own kitchen and takes the job in the middle of rural nowhere as a very temporary means to an end. Falling for the sexy farmer is not on the menu. Increase the heat until romance sizzles…
One law firm, three best friends, three chances to fall in love! Carsen Taite launches her new Legal Affairs Romance series with Practice Makes Perfect (June 2019), a contemporary lesbian romance series set in an Austin, Texas, boutique law firm. Keen to get their fledgling firm off to a hot start, attorney Campbell Clark lands their first big client, an internet start-up. But instead of being hired to replace the old-school firm currently representing them, she is forced to work—and compete with for rights to future business—with Wynne Garrity, who has her own reasons for needing to come out on top. When attraction flares between them, will professional victory mean losing at love?
In gay romance, Frederick Smith and Chaz Lamar’s In Case You Forgot (June 2019) is a contemporary second-chance at life and love story featuring two socially aware queer Black men starting over in West Hollywood. Zaire James’s friends, family, and coworkers think he has the perfect partner—but he knows differently, and on the cusp of turning thirty, he ends his marriage and sets a course to find himself and his truth. Kenny Kane is staring forty in the face, and he realizes he’s risking missing his life if he doesn’t stop deferring his dreams and settling for unsatisfying relationships. Zaire and Kenny undo their pasts and hope to find what is missing in their lives.
What if you could turn back time to just before the romance died? Can love give two people the strength to forgive and take a second chance on forever? In Just One Moment (July 2019), Dena Blake spices a classic second-chance romance with a dash of amnesia. With their marriage past the breaking point, Chloe leaves her wife, Shay, but when an accident leaves Shay with no memory of the previous year, vulnerable and alone, Chloe returns to care for her. Shay senses a distance between them that she cannot comprehend, but as she heals, and Chloe helps her recover her memories, the breach is slowly closed. And when Shay’s memories of the missing year return, will the new love they’ve built be strong enough to withstand past betrayals?
Check out Bold Strokes Books' Submission Guidelines, and FAQs for more details about writing for them. For more information about their books, check out their website and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.
Charlotte Ledger - HarperCollins:
Melanie Hudson’s Dear Rosie Hughes
It’s been fifteen years since Aggie’s friendship with Rosie Hughes ended abruptly. But now she’s heard from the village rumour mill that Rosie is off to war with her job in the Royal Navy, she knows her best friend needs her more than ever—despite what’s happened between them in the past. The two friends write each other letters and the comfort in their shared words is an anchor to the life they knew before and the only constant they have in an increasingly unpredictable world.
But it’s not just the two friends who write, the village, Rosie’s parents, make up a wonderful cast of characters that add humour and a gorgeous love story for Aggie.
This is a novel that stayed with me long after I reached the end. It’s told entirely in letters but both main characters, Aggie and Rosie, have such distinct, charming voices in their letters that they just wouldn’t let me forget them. There is love, there is laughter and there is heartbreak, but ultimately this is a beautiful love letter to friendship. I’m so excited to publish it.
Charlotte Ledger is Commissioning Editor at HarperCollins and HarperImpulse. Check out the Submission Guidelines and FAQ page for more details about writing for HarperImpulse. For more information about HarperImpulse books, check out their website and follow them on Facebook and Twitter.
The industry is always shifting, don't worry if you don't see yourself in these options, and remember that original is always welcome. Join the conversation with #IndustryInsights and comment below with suggestions for what you want to see in this space.