Kissing Books

Slow Going, But Still Marvelous

How’s your Thursday going? I finally made it through a couple more books and am very excited! Reading slumps are the worst.

Over on Book Riot

I’ve never really enjoyed Heyer, but if you have, Namera compiled the 25 best one-liners for you to enjoy. (Or if you haven’t tried her, see which of her books pulls you in.)

What are your favorite co-written books? I feel like this is a good category for romance readers to really shout out some good ones!

Is now the time to finally pick the right ereader for you?

And if you like YA romcoms, here’s an exclusive look at an upcoming one!


Cover of American Squire by Sierra SimoneIf you’ve been feeling a Sierra Simone craving or just want to dive back into the world of New Camelot, American Squire is 99 cents. It’s a short piece, but looks pretty intense. Sierra Simone always delivers when it comes to it, no matter how long it is. I mean, Midnight Mass, anyone?

When was the last time you picked up a basketball book? If it’s been a minute, you definitely want to check out Shots Not Taken by Nicole Falls. Not only does it have…quite the cover in its simplicity, but it also features something that could only cross paths in Nashville: b-ball and country music.

New Releases

Since last week, I’ve read two books that I’m excited to share with everyone. The first was a bit slow-going, but still marvelous. The other was the kind where I literally had to say “stop” aloud to myself to put the damn thing down to go to work. An hour late.

Cover of Lord of the Last Heartbeat by May PetersonLord of the Last Heartbeat
May Peterson

Somewhere, I heard the words “magical opera” and came running. I’d already been interested enough in the broader blurb to download it, but I really decided to push it up my list based on a lot of people’s initial reactions to it before release. I was also curious about the intersex representation, which someone mentioned just days before I started reading it. May Peterson’s Twitter identifies her as nonbinary transfem, and she throws some of that identity into Mio, the intersex protagonist whose song is magic. The breadth of his power is unknown when we meet him, as he does dirty work for his mother, one of the biggest mafiosas in Vermagna. Her power lies in using people’s secrets, and Mio can uncover them with his voice. But he doesn’t want to do that anymore, and reaches out to Rhodry, a moon-soul who has died and now shares the spirit of the bear, on a whim. Rhodry, himself, has some issues in his home dealing with curses and ghosts, and secrets, but is fascinated by Mio the singer and curious about his need to escape his mother. Lots of things happen and it’s as much a mystery as it is a romance as it is a fantasy, with some nice gothic elements to it.

I don’t read a lot of fantasy, which might be why this one was a slow starter for me. I was very involved when I was in it, but could only read small bits at a time. Except the second half. I got to about 55 percent and just zoomed through it. It’s wildly compelling, and you just love both protagonists to bits. I am looking forward to seeing what else May is going to toss our way…especially because there are a few characters I’m just going to need more of, whether they’re leads in a future romance or not.

Cover of Island Fling with the Tycoon by Therese BeharrieIsland Fling With The Tycoon
Therese Beharrie

I don’t often pick up category romances with one of those “everything you need to know is in the title” titles (not because I don’t like them, but can go just a touch banner-blind to them—I’m trying to get better at that, too), but a: it was Therese Beharrie and b: it was Therese Beharrie. Her stories are super addictive, and this one was no different. Piper has arrived on Mykonos for her brother’s wedding, only to not have a ride from the airport. After some confusion, she finds her ride: the bride’s brother, who has essentially funded the whole destination wedding. When the groom literally runs off during the first of four nights’ worth of wedding celebrations, Piper and Caleb are the ones who have to go find him. Along the way, they make a lot of discoveries about themselves and each other, and only getting over those discoveries will make it so the thing that’s between them will actually work. They just have to get out of their own way.

I have had an ARC of this book for…a very very long time. Longer than I had one for One Day To Fall, which came out last month. I finally sat down to read it, and was upset with myself for taking this long. Piper and Caleb are such complex and wonderful characters, and watching their interaction is so addictive, I literally could not stop. If not for that whole pesky having to work thing, I might have just kept going until it was over. (It’s more than likely that by the time you read this, I will have just eaten what was left.)

Other new books I’m excited to pick up:

Cover of Sweet Perfection by Kat ColeSweet Perfection by Kat Cole
Everlasting Desire by Stephanie Nicole Norris
Love & The Laws of Motion by Amanda Weaver
Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir (regardless of its categorization in Amazon, reports are actually that it is a love story but not a romance, but come on, look at that cover; and it’s about lesbian necromancers in space—you know I’m going to at least try)
Beautiful Accidents by Erin Zak
Healing Hannah’s Heart by Preslaysa Williams
On the Corner of Love and Hate by Nina Bocci

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