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Miscellaneous Must Haves

July 2018 Must Haves

Contemporary Romance

Branded cover imageBranded (Brody Brothers #1) by Stacy Gail – 2-Jul-2018 (Carina Press)

You want my hands on you, Celia. Making you shiver, making you moan, making you scream. Admit it.

Celia Villarreal had wanted those things with Ryland Brody, Bitterthorn’s golden boy—and wanted them badly enough to make a fool of herself one idiotic night months ago.

Naughty children shouldn’t touch what they don’t own.

Rejection always stings, but putting a move on Ry had devastating consequences. Now her regret burns as bright as her need—until Ry, as glorious as ever, makes her an offer that might finally be her ticket out of town.

I’m not your enemy, darlin’. If you give me half a chance, you’ll see that I can be your hero.

When working together leads to grinding all naked-like with the very cowboy who’s seen her at her worst, Celia is afraid she’s made a mistake.

Until the truth comes out.

This is who we are from now on. Say it. Feel it.

Once Ry’s past motivations come to light, Celia must decide if she can give him another chance or turn her back on Bitterthorn—and the one man who’s always wanted her—for good.

Cover image - Cooper's CharmCooper’s Charm (Love at the Resort #1) by Lori Foster – 24-Jul-2018 (HQN)

One summer, two sisters and a chance to start over…

Before the burglary that shattered her confidence, Phoenix Rose had a fiancé, a successful store and a busy, happy existence. After months spent adrift, she takes a job at the lakeside resort of Cooper’s Charm. Surrounded by beautiful scenery, friendly colleagues and a charismatic, widowed boss, Phoenix is slowly inching her way back into the world.

Visiting Cooper’s Charm to check up on her little sister, Ridley Rose impulsively agrees to fill in as housekeeper. Still reeling from an ego-bruising divorce, she finds satisfaction in a job well done—and in the attention of the resort’s handsome scuba instructor.

For Phoenix and Ridley, Cooper’s Charm is supposed to be merely temporary. But this detour may lead to the place they most need to be, where the future is as satisfying as it is surprising…

Cover image - A Duke by DefaultA Duke by Default (Reluctant Royals #2) by Alyssa Cole – 31-Jul-2018 (Avon)

Award-winning author Alyssa Cole’s Reluctant Royals series continues with a woman on a quest to be the heroine of her own story and the duke in shining armor she rescues along the way

New York City socialite and perpetual hot mess Portia Hobbs is tired of disappointing her family, friends, and—most importantly—herself. An apprenticeship with a struggling swordmaker in Scotland is a chance to use her expertise and discover what she’s capable of. Turns out she excels at aggravating her gruff silver fox boss…when she’s not having inappropriate fantasies about his sexy Scottish burr.

Tavish McKenzie doesn’t need a rich, spoiled American telling him how to run his armory…even if she is infuriatingly good at it. Tav tries to rebuff his apprentice, and his attraction to her, but when Portia accidentally discovers that he’s the secret son of a duke, rough-around-the-edges Tav becomes her newest makeover project.

Forging metal into weapons and armor is one thing, but when desire burns out of control and the media spotlight gets too hot to bear, can a commoner turned duke and his posh apprentice find lasting love?

Cover image - Half EmptyHalf Empty (First Wives #2) by Catherine Bybee – 31-Jul-2018 (Montlake)

New York Times bestselling author Catherine Bybee continues her sassy series with another of the First Wives finding that love and secrets are a dangerous combination.

Trina Petrov’s marriage-by-contract was only meant to be temporary. But when tragedy strikes, Trina is left one of the wealthiest women in the world. To recover from the shock, she takes some time off in Italy, swearing not to fall for any men while there. But that doesn’t mean she can’t fall for anyone on the trip home…

Country-music superstar Wade Thomas is lying low in a hotel bar when he gets the cold shoulder from the woman next to him. He’s used to fans fawning at his boots, and Trina is a refreshing change—so is the fact that she has no idea who he is.

As things begin to heat up, Trina discovers that the circumstances of her late husband’s death are not what they seemed. Now she’s in trouble, and Wade isn’t about to let her out of his sight. Getting close to love and danger could get them killed…or it could sweep them both off their feet.

Cover image - The ProtectorThe Protector (Games People Play #4) by HelenKay Dimon – 31-Jul-2018 (Avon)

Salvation, Pennsylvania. The commune located in the small town was advertised as a modern Utopia: a place to live, share, and learn with other like-minded young people. Cate Pendleton’s sister was one of them. Now she’s dead—and Cate won’t rest until she finds out who killed her. Stonewalled at every turn, she approaches a DC Fixer for help and ends up with Damon Knox, a mysterious man with a secretive past. But Cate soon discovers that she not only needs Damon, she wants him, which isn’t good—for the attraction brewing between them will only lead to complications that can turn into danger . . .

Damon has tried to erase the hellish memories and the evil that happened in Salvation ever since he left a long time ago. Still, he can’t turn his back on Cate. As Damon works with Cate to uncover her sister’s killer, he finds himself drawn to her more and more. But how will she feel about him when she learns about his connection to the place?

Joining forces to uncover the truth, they must stay one step ahead of a cunning killer who’s bent on not being exposed.

Fantasy

Cover image - City of LiesCity of Lies (The Poison Wars #1) by Sam Hawke – 3-Jul-2018 (Tor Books)

I was seven years old the first time my uncle poisoned me…

Outwardly, Jovan is the lifelong friend of the Chancellor’s charming, irresponsible Heir. Quiet. Forgettable. In secret, he’s a master of poisons and chemicals, trained to protect the Chancellor’s family from treachery. When the Chancellor succumbs to an unknown poison and an army lays siege to the city, Jovan and his sister Kalina must protect the Heir and save their city-state.

But treachery lurks in every corner, and the ancient spirits of the land are rising…and angry.

Cover Image - Lost GodsLost Gods by Micah Yongo – 3-Jul-2018 (Watkins Media)

In an epic fantasy kingdom inspired by African legends, a young assassin finds himself hunted by the brothers and sisters he has trained alongside since birth.

A teenaged assassin is hunted by his own Brotherhood as he seeks to uncover a supernatural conspiracy before it’s too late

Neythan is one of five adolescents trained and raised together by a mysterious brotherhood of assassins known as the Shedaím. When Neythan is framed for the murder of his closest friend, he pursues his betrayer, and in so doing learns there’s far more to the Brotherhood, and even the world itself, than he’d ever thought possible.

Fantasy Romance

Cover Image - Kill the Farm BoyKill the Farm Boy (Tales of Pell #1) by Delilah S. Dawson & Kevin Hearne – 24-Jul-2018 (Del Rey)

Once upon a time, in a faraway kingdom, a hero, the Chosen One, was born . . . and so begins every fairy tale ever told.

This is not that fairy tale.

There is a Chosen One, but he is unlike any One who has ever been Chosened.

And there is a faraway kingdom, but you have never been to a magical world quite like the land of Pell.

There, a plucky farm boy will find more than he’s bargained for on his quest to awaken the sleeping princess in her cursed tower. First there’s the Dark Lord who wishes for the boy’s untimely death . . . and also very fine cheese. Then there’s a bard without a song in her heart but with a very adorable and fuzzy tail, an assassin who fears not the night but is terrified of chickens, and a mighty fighter more frightened of her sword than of her chain-mail bikini. This journey will lead to sinister umlauts, a trash-talking goat, the Dread Necromancer Steve, and a strange and wondrous journey to the most peculiar “happily ever after” that ever once-upon-a-timed.

Cover image - HuntressHuntress (Royal States #4) by Susan Copperfield – 31-Jul-2018 (Pen & Page Publishing)

Royals saved the United States when magic tore the union apart. Under the rule of sixteen monarchies, America has risen from its own ashes and returned to its place as a global power.

In the Royal States of America, magic rules all, but life—and love—always finds a way.

Like the other men in Prince Kelvin’s line, only the love of another can set him free from his family’s curse, but it’s hard finding the perfect woman able to love him despite all his flaws—and his tendency to transform into a white turkey during the spring. If he wants to survive and reclaim his humanity, he must find someone who would turn the world upside down for him, not because of fame, wealth, or power but because he has earned her trust and affection.

When he develops an unhealthy case of infatuation for the huntress wanting him as her next trophy, his curse may be his salvation, if he can convince the wild woman of the woods to see him for who he is rather than the beast he has become.

Historical Fantasy

Cover image- European Travel for the Monstrous GentlewomaEuropean Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman (Extraordinary Adventures of the Athena Club #2) by Theodora Goss – 10-Jul-2018 (Saga)

In the sequel to the critically acclaimed The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter, Mary Jekyll and the rest of the daughters of literature’s mad scientists embark on a madcap adventure across Europe to rescue another monstrous girl and stop the Alchemical Society’s nefarious plans once and for all.

Mary Jekyll’s life has been peaceful since she helped Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson solve the Whitechapel Murders. Beatrice Rappaccini, Catherine Moreau, Justine Frankenstein, and Mary’s sister Diana Hyde have settled into the Jekyll household in London, and although they sometimes quarrel, the members of the Athena Club get along as well as any five young women with very different personalities. At least they can always rely on Mrs. Poole.

But when Mary receives a telegram that Lucinda Van Helsing has been kidnapped, the Athena Club must travel to the Austro-Hungarian Empire to rescue yet another young woman who has been subjected to horrific experimentation. Where is Lucinda, and what has Professor Van Helsing been doing to his daughter? Can Mary, Diana, Beatrice, and Justine reach her in time?

Racing against the clock to save Lucinda from certain doom, the Athena Club embarks on a madcap journey across Europe. From Paris to Vienna to Budapest, Mary and her friends must make new allies, face old enemies, and finally confront the fearsome, secretive Alchemical Society. It’s time for these monstrous gentlewomen to overcome the past and create their own destinies.

Historical Fiction

Cover image - Eagle the CraneEagle and Crane by Suaanne Rindell – 3-Jul-2018 (Putnam)

Two young daredevil flyers confront ugly truths and family secrets during the U.S. internment of Japanese citizens during World War II, from the author of The Other Typist and Three-Martini Lunch.

Louis Thorn and Haruto “Harry” Yamada — Eagle and Crane — are the star attractions of Earl Shaw’s Flying Circus, a daredevil (and not exactly legal) flying act that traverses Depression-era California. The young men have a complicated relationship, thanks to the Thorn family’s belief that the Yamadas — Japanese immigrants — stole land that should have stayed in the Thorn family.

When Louis and Harry become aerial stuntmen, performing death-defying tricks high above audiences, they’re both drawn to Shaw’s smart and appealing stepdaughter, Ava Brooks. When the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor and one of Shaw’s planes mysteriously crashes and two charred bodies are discovered in it, authorities conclude that the victims were Harry and his father, Kenichi, who had escaped from a Japanese internment camp they had been sent to by the federal government. To the local sheriff, the situation is open and shut. But to the lone FBI agent assigned to the case, the details don’t add up.

Thus begins an investigation into what really happened to cause the plane crash, who was in the plane when it fell from the sky, and why no one involved seems willing to tell the truth. By turns an absorbing mystery and a fascinating exploration of race, family and loyalty, Eagle and Crane is that rare novel that tells a gripping story as it explores a terrible era of American history.

Historical Mystery

Cover image - Trial on Mount KoyaTrial on Mount Koya (Shinobi Mystery #6) by Susan Spann – 3-Jul-2018 (Seventh Street)

Master ninja Hiro Hattori and Jesuit Father Mateo head up to Mount Koya, only to find themselves embroiled in yet another mystery, this time in a Shingon Buddhist temple atop one of Japan’s most sacred peaks.

November, 1565: Master ninja Hiro Hattori and Portuguese Jesuit Father Mateo travel to a Buddhist temple at the summit of Mount Koya, carrying a secret message for an Iga spy posing as a priest on the sacred mountain. When a snowstorm strikes the peak, a killer begins murdering the temple’s priests and posing them as Buddhist judges of the afterlife–the Kings of Hell. Hiro and Father Mateo must unravel the mystery before the remaining priests–including Father Mateo–become unwilling members of the killer’s grisly council of the dead.

Historical Romance

Cover Image - Born to be WildeBorn to be Wilde (Wildes of Lindow Castle #3) by Eloisa James – 31-Jul-2018 (Avon)

The richest bachelor in England plays matchmaker…for an heiress he wants for himself!

For beautiful, witty Lavinia Gray, there’s only one thing worse than having to ask the appalling Parth Sterling to marry her: being turned down by him.

Now the richest bachelor in England, Parth is not about to marry a woman as reckless and fashion-obsessed as Lavinia; he’s chosen a far more suitable bride.

But when he learns of Lavinia’s desperate circumstances, he offers to find her a husband. Even better, he’ll find her a prince.

As usual, there’s no problem Parth can’t fix. But the more time he spends with the beguiling Lavinia, the more he finds himself wondering…

Why does the woman who’s completely wrong feel so right in his arms?

Paranormal Romance

Cover image - The Coyote's brideThe Coyote’s Bride (Masters of Maria #6) by Holley Trent – 23-Jul-2018 (Self)

Related to one of the oldest shapeshifter legacies in Maria, Lily Baxter grew up knowing there was a chance she’d find romance among the supernatural. But certainly her idea of romance wasn’t a drunken one-night stand with a Coyote she loves to hate, a Vegas wedding, and soon after, a heartrending miscarriage. She and Lance Aitkenson obviously aren’t meant to be.

But while secretly coordinating their divorce far from the snoops back in town, her new husband gets jumped by man-hating jaguar shifters, and it’s up to her to smooth things over. There’s something stranger than usual about these Jaguars. Not only do they seem to have abilities no other shapeshifters have, but they claim a centuries-old connection to Maria’s resident goddess. They see strong-minded Lily as a kindred spirit, but Lance fears they harbor sinister motives.

Together, he and Lily might be able to unravel the secrets of the mysterious cult and prevent them from disturbing the peace back in Maria, but can they really work cooperatively when they’re so close to calling it quits? Or will they realize that they don’t need an accident as their excuse for sticking together?

Cover Image - Saint or SinnerSaint or Sinner (Bad Things #8) by Cynthia Eden – 24-Jul-2018 (Hocus Pocus Publishing)

Beware of Beauty…because she’s got the heart of a real beast.

Smart people—and monsters who know the score—fear Josephine Saint. The sexy vampire might appear to be a sensual temptation, but she’s a cold-blooded assassin. Mercy? Jo doesn’t know the meaning of the word. With each successful hunt, Jo slides one step closer to getting the promised prize that she’s coveted—her freedom. Long ago, Josephine made a deal with the devil, and now, the jerk is collecting on the final payment due him.

Find the angel…before he rips the world apart.

Her latest target is Malik, an angel who has gone dark. The fool fell and crashed hard to earth, and now he’s indulging in every sin he can find. And, bonus, the guy has every predator in the land closing in on him because angel wings are highly prized on the black magic market. It’s Jo’s job to find Malik and bring his sexy angel ass back upstairs except…

The angel is already changing…into something new and something very, very deadly.

Malik has his own mission, and it doesn’t involve being dragged back to heaven. He’s ready to lose his wings, ready to pay any price, if it means he can right a wrong from his past. He never expected for Jo to hunt him, and he knows that he won’t be able to control himself when she’s near. Because Jo—fierce vampire, deadly assassin—she’s his charge. He’s been watching over her for centuries. Watching her, and wanting her. Now that he’s earthbound, Malik can finally make the vamp his.

Can a vamp save the world? Maybe…if she can claim a fallen angel’s heart.

With every moment that Malik spends on earth, the darkness within him grows. When angels fall, they change. They become something new—and a firestorm is about to erupt from Malik. When the fire erupts, it will destroy everything and everyone in its path…His only link to sanity is Jo, and if he loses her…Malik may lose his very soul.

The hellfire is coming, and it will rage. SAINT OR SINNER…what will you be?

Science Fiction

Cover Image - A Study in HonorA Study in Honor (Janet Watson Chronicles #1) by Beth Bernobich writing as Claire O’Dell – 31-Jul-2018 (Harper Voyager)

Dr. Janet Watson knows firsthand the horrifying cost of a divided nation. While treating broken soldiers on the battlefields of the New Civil War, a sniper’s bullet shattered her arm and ended her career. Honorably discharged and struggling with the semi-functional mechanical arm that replaced the limb she lost, she returns to the nation’s capital, a bleak, edgy city in the throes of a fraught presidential election. Homeless and jobless, Watson is uncertain of the future when she meets another black and queer woman, Sara Holmes, a mysterious yet playfully challenging covert agent who offers the doctor a place to stay.

Watson’s readjustment to civilian life is complicated by the infuriating antics of her strange new roommate. But the tensions between them dissolve when Watson discovers that soldiers from the New Civil War have begun dying one by one—and that the deaths may be the tip of something far more dangerous, involving the pharmaceutical industry and even the looming election. Joining forces, Watson and Holmes embark on a thrilling investigation to solve the mystery—and secure justice for these fallen soldiers.

Science Fiction Romance

Cover Image - ImperatorImperator (Galactic Gladiators #11) by Anna Hackett – 10-Jul-2018 (Anna Hackett)

In Imperator, Galen has to work with the former head of security of Fortuna Station and Champion of the Zaabha Arena, Samantha Santos, to survive and escape from the dangerous desert arena of Zaabha.

Urban Fantasy

Cover Image - Oak & ThornsOak & Thorns (Wild Hunt #2) by Yasmine Galenorn – 2-Jul-2018 (Nightqueen Enterprises)

Caught between the worlds of Light and Dark Fae, Ember Kearney was born with the mark of the Silver Stag. Rejected by both her bloodlines, she’s turned her back on her people to become a freelance investigator. Ember and her best friend Angel are led into a glittering world of conspiracy and danger when they are recruited to join the Wild Hunt, run by Herne, son of the god Cernunnos and the Faerie goddess, Morgana. Now, Ember must not only face her heritage, but she’s bound to preserve the balance between the Fae Courts, for if order isn’t maintained, war and chaos will spill out into the mortal realm.

Oak & Thorns:
When Herne and Ember are approached by the matriarch of a group of water-horse shifters to help find her cousin’s murderer, the Wild Hunt is drawn into a dark and shadowed world of the Ante-Fae. But as the team delves into the details of the grisly death, they uncover evidence of a string of murders that leads them directly into the court of Blackthorn. Caught in a mire of political intrigue and shadow magic, will Ember and Herne be able to bring the serial killer to light, or will the King of Thorns manage to silence them forever?

Cover image - EmbersEmbers (The Dark in You #4) by Suzanne Wright – 3-Jul-2018 (Piatkus)

Harper and Knox are back and better than ever! The fourth book in Suzanne Wright’s globally bestselling The Dark in You series is not to be missed.

The final horseman awaits . . . and the stakes have never been higher.

With the birth of their son, Asher, Harper and Knox are both more powerful and more vulnerable than they’ve ever been before. Asher’s charm has seduced even the devil himself, but Harper knows that the real villain is still out there, and as desperate as ever to see the Primes fall. They’re laying low, and there’s no way to tell which one of their circle is really a deadly foe . . .

When the final horseman makes their move, Harper and Knox will have to use all the considerable power at their disposal – and that may even include Asher’s mysterious abilities. One thing’s for sure – this is a baby who’s more than a match for any demon coming after him.

It’s time for the world’s most formidable family to take the fight to the enemy . . .

The monthly Must Have list is a compilation of the upcoming release titles that we, The Book Pushers, just can’t wait to get our hands on. Don’t see a title you’re excited about listed here? Add it to the comments section below. Let us know what you’re looking forward to!

By E_booklover

E is addicted to books. She discovered at an early age that not only were they her transport to far off worlds, adventures, and exotic cultures, but that she ran into far fewer objects if she walked while reading then if she wasn't reading. She reads across several genres, such as: romance, western,mystery, SF/F and its derivatives. She isn't too picky except for good characterization, settings she can imagine, and a story that flows logically... umm so ok -- she wants a good story. Have any to recommend?

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