Kissing Books

Procrastibaking and the End of RT

Hey there folks! I’m back in the hot part of the desert after a refreshing few days without seeing the sun (okay, so maybe that wasn’t the best for me). RT was a blast, and I hope those of you who might be going to RWA (the Romance Writers of America National Conference) and the following Book Bonanza enjoy yourselves as much as I did!

Sponsored by Penguin Teen

Meet Daisy Winters, an offbeat sixteen-year-old Floridian with mermaid-red hair; a part time job at a bootleg Walmart, and a perfect older sister who’s nearly engaged to the Crown Prince of Scotland. Daisy has no desire to live in the spotlight, but relentless tabloid attention forces her to join Ellie at the relative seclusion of the castle across the pond.

The dashing young Miles has been appointed to teach Daisy the ropes of being regal, the prince’s roguish younger brother kicks up scandal wherever he goes, and tries his best to take Daisy along for the ride. The crown–and the intriguing Miles–might be trying to make Daisy into a lady . . . but Daisy may just rewrite the royal rulebook to suit herself.

News and Useful Links

Do you procrastibake? Mia Hopkins does.

Romantic Times is going away. The digital publication, the awards, the conference. Kathryn Falk announced it on Tuesday, declaring the intent to retire. After 38 years, I’d say she’s earned it. With that announcement came a second, closely related one: while RT Booklovers Convention is no more, the first annual BookLoversCon will be happening in New Orleans next May. So we’ll see what happens there. With the number of blogs, sites, and other folks dedicated to reviewing romance, I’m not sure what hole the loss of the publication will leave, but the awards, you all.

Since it was a reviewers’ choice awards, there wasn’t the whole thing with authors having to self-nominate, and therefore there was less gatekeeping when it came to the finalists and winners. I hope there’s going to be a way that can continue. Somehow.

Yes, #RomBkLove continues. Get lost in that hashtag, folks, and kiss your manageable TBR goodbye.

Sarah MacLean is back with her recent favorites.

Penny Reid and forty of her friends are getting together to produce Cocktales, with proceeds going to anyone who needs help with legal fees thanks to #byefaleena.

Steps are being made to get the trademark terminated.

And if you’re not quite Cocky’d Out, here’s the most recent statement from Sam at Set Sail Studios.

And of course there had to be more trademark drama. Heidi McLaughlin’s people submitted an application to trademark the word “forever” (because that is a hardly-used word that can definitely be limited to just that one author) but that clap-back was strong and quick. The author claims she’d had some trouble with identity theft and had intended the trademark to help, but really. Come on. She has since requested the application be rescinded.

Stacey Abrams won the Georgia Primary! I know very little about her platform, but not only would she be the first black woman governor of Georgia, but seriously, more romance authors need to be in charge.


Alexis Daria’s Take the Lead and Dance With Me are both on sale right now! It’s for a limited time, though, so if you’ve been holding out, now would be the time.

Enrage by Rachel Van Dyken is 1.49 right now.

Marie Harte’s Dragon’s Demon is 99 cents right now. I’ve been noticing more and more dragon shifter romances, and I’m going to sit down sometime soon and just gorge myself on them.

If you dig the dragon thing, Dahlia Rose’s A Dragon’s Promise is 3.99. And there are a dozen more after that.

Over on Book Riot

Trisha and I got to record When in Romance at RT and it was fabulous to look at her face!

Not yet had your fill of billionaires? There are definitely some I have to try on this list!

“Don’t push anyone down the stairs. Drunkenly falling down them yourself is permissible.” Yes, this is advice for fathers in romance novels.

And of course, we’re giving away $500 to the bookstore of your choice! Enter here!


Once Upon a Marquess
Courtney Milan

[CW for suicide and substance abuse/addiction]

With the release of After the Wedding, I realized that I was incredibly behind on Courtney Milan Victorians. When Once Upon a Marquess was on a rare sale, I went ahead and bought it, and picked it out of several books I’d downloaded to my iPad for the flight to RT.

Y’all. It was a good thing my husband was the one sitting next to me. Barely a page in, I was already cackling. Loudly. With snorts. Courtney Milan is masterful at alternating serious family drama (in this case, treason, suicide, transportation, and destitution) with absolutely hilarious scenes involving willful younger sisters and gay avian lovers.

Judith Worth is the oldest of four siblings. Her father, after accused of being a traitor, committed suicide in jail, and her brother was lost at sea after being Transported. Her oldest younger sibling elected to live with a relative, but her two younger ones, both teenagers, are in her care. But Christian Trent, Marquess of Ashford, comes running the moment she writes, and the two embark on a path to solve several mysteries at once—including whether they could ever be what they were.

Now I’m just wondering if I want to devour After the Wedding now or wait until I have more to read afterwards. It’s a hard choice to make.


In the meantime, I’m reading His Cocky Valet by Cole McCade, because there was no way I wasn’t going to hop into that river immediately. While there are people who might be squicked by the use of “My Young Master” as practically an endearment, so far I am enraptured with the combined approach to young dude getting shit together, learning to rely on someone, learning to run a business, and learning about power dynamics that aren’t quite D/s.

I’m not sure what’s coming after that. I still have to crawl my way out from under the piles of books from RT and the stacks of library books I had waiting for me when I got back.

New and Upcoming Releases

Grumpy Fake Boyfriend by Jackie Lau
Rogues Rush In by Tessa Dare and Christi Caldwell
The Controversial Princess by Jodi Ellen Malpas
Too Wilde to Wed by Eloisa James (May 29)
Touched by You by Elle Wright (May 29)

As usual, catch me on Twitter @jessisreading or Instagram @jess_is_reading, or send me an email at if you’ve got feedback or just want to say hi!