Today I am excited to share the cover for book two in Kelly Farmer’s Out on the Ice series, Unexpected Goals, which releases from Carina Press on November 2, 2021! Here’s the story behind this enemies-to-lovers hockey romance between two on-ice rivals:
If you can’t play nice, play hockey
Canadian goalie Maisy Goode is wary of American Jen Donato and her dirty playing. She’s been on the receiving end of Jen’s aggressive style and doesn’t like it one bit. Now that they’re on the same women’s pro team, keeping her eyes off Jen is a struggle.
Jen signed up to win it all with the Boston Ice. Her very public clashes with their hot goalie aren’t going to derail her championship plans. Jen’s a professional. But there’s just something about Maisy that gets under her skin.
The media loves the tension, but the more time Maisy and Jen are forced to spend together, the more they discover what’s between them isn’t entirely hostile.
Banter turns into flirting, and flirting turns into more. The closer they get to the playoffs, the more pressure weighs on the team—and the couple. Maisy needs Jen’s support. Jen needs to know Maisy’s all in. And it all needs to get sorted out before the season—and their relationship—closes out.
And here’s the freaking adorable cover, designed by John Kicksee of Kix by Design!
Kelly Farmer (she/her) has been writing romance novels since junior high. In those days, they featured high school quarterbacks named Brad who drove Corvettes and gals with names like Desireé because her own name was rather plain. Her stories since then have ranged from historical and contemporary male/female romances to light women’s fiction to LGBTQ+ romance. One theme remains the same: everyone deserves to have a happy ending.
Kelly’s debut novel, Out on the Ice, was released by Carina Press during a global pandemic. This is very on-brand for her long and winding journey toward publication. She is a past president of Chicago-North Romance Writers and is also a member of Women’s Fiction Writers Association.
When not writing, she enjoys being outside in nature, quoting from Eighties movies, listening to all kinds of music, and petting every dog she comes in contact with. All of these show up in her books. She also watches a lot of documentaries to satisfy her hunger for random bits of trivia. Kelly lives in the Chicago area, where she swears every winter is her last one there.
To connect with Kelly, talk about current TV binges, and share photos of your adorable pets, please head over to:
Today on the site I’m thrilled to be revealing the cover of one of my most anticipated rom-coms in the history of literally ever, Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by triple(-category) threat Ashley Herring Blake! This contemporary f/f (bi and lesbian) romance releases February 22, 2022, and here’s what it’s all about:
Delilah Green swore she would never go back to Bright Falls—nothing is there for her but memories of a lonely childhood where she was little more than a burden to her cold and distant stepfamily. Her life is in New York, with her photography career finally gaining steam and her bed never empty. Sure, it’s a different woman every night, but that’s just fine with her.
When Delilah’s estranged stepsister, Astrid, pressures her into photographing her wedding with a guilt trip and a five-figure check, Delilah finds herself back in the godforsaken town that she used to call home. She plans to breeze in and out, but then she sees Claire Sutherland, one of Astrid’s stuck-up besties, and decides that maybe there’s some fun (and a little retribution) to be had in Bright Falls, after all.
Having raised her eleven-year-old daughter mostly on her own while dealing with her unreliable ex and running a bookstore, Claire Sutherland depends upon a life without surprises. And Delilah Green is an unwelcome surprise…at first. Though they’ve known each other for years, they don’t really know each other—so Claire is unsettled when Delilah figures out exactly what buttons to push. When they’re forced together during a gauntlet of wedding preparations—including a plot to save Astrid from her horrible fiancé—Claire isn’t sure she has the strength to resist Delilah’s charms. Even worse, she’s starting to think she doesn’t want to…
And here’s the irresistible cover, designed by Katie Anderson and illustrated byLeni Kauffman!
Ashley Herring Blake is an award-winning author and literary agent at Rees Literary Agency. She holds a Master’s degree in teaching and loves coffee, arranging her books by color, and cold weather. She is the author of the young adult novels Suffer Love, How to Make a Wish, and Girl Made of Stars (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt), and the middle grade novels Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World, The Mighty Heart of Sunny St. James and Hazel Bly and the Deep Blue Sea (Little, Brown BFYR) . Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World was a Stonewall Honor Book, as well as a Kirkus, School Library Journal, NYPL, and NPR Best Book of 2018. Her YA novel Girl Made of Stars was a Lambda Literary Award finalist. She’s also the author of the adult romance novel Delilah Green Doesn’t Care (Berkley), and a co-editor on the young adult romance anthology Fools in Love (Running Press Kids). You can find her on Twitter and Instagram at @ashleyhblake and on the web at www.ashleyherringblake.com. She lives on a very tiny island off the coast of Georgia with her family.
I’m so excited to be revealing the cover for contemporary f/f romance I Kissed a Girl by Jennet Alexander on the site today! It releases from Sourcebooks on August 3, 2021, and sounds cute as heck, with a cover to match! Here’s the story:
Is a happy ending finally in sight for Hollywood’s favorite scream queen?
Lilah Silver’s a young actress who dreams of climbing out of B-list stardom. She’s been cast as the “final girl” in what could be her breakout performance…but if she wants to prove herself to everyone who ever doubted her, she’s going to need major help along the way.
Noa Birnbaum may be a brilliant makeup artist and special effects whiz-kid, but cracking into the union is more difficult than she imagined. Keeping everyone happy is a full-time job, and she’s already run ragged. And yet when the beautiful star she’s been secretly crushing on admits to fears of her own, Noa vows to do everything in her power to help Lilah shine like never before.
Long hours? Exhausting work? No problem. Together they can take the world by storm…but can the connection forged over long hours in the makeup chair ever hope to survive the glare of the spotlight?
And here’s the adorable cover, designed by Dawn Adams and illustrated by Colleen Reinhart!
But wait, there’s more! We’ve also got an excerpt so you can meet Noa and Lilah ASAP!
Noa leaned in again, filling in one of Lilah’s brows with a pencil. Perched on the edge of the table, Lilah sitting below her in a lower chair, Noa didn’t notice her necklace dislodging itself from between her breasts until she felt the gentle tug on the chain and the brush of fingers against her collarbone.
Stifling a little yelp, Noa sat back, worried that she’d invaded Lilah’s space more than she should have—only it was the little six-pointed star on the delicate silver chain that Lilah balanced on her fingertips.
“Sorry,” Lilah apologized, casting her eyes up to meet Noa’s gaze through her dark-tinted lashes. “You’re Jewish? I guessed, when we were introduced, but so many people around here use stage names that I wasn’t sure if it was okay to ask.”
A faint and familiar chill prickled the back of Noa’s neck and she forced it back. There was no reason at all to be worried about what Lilah might think. There was no danger here. Noa couldn’t possibly be the first Jewish person she knew—not in a city like LA, not in an industry like theirs. Unless that was why Lilah had been cool and standoffish, and it wasn’t about Noa’s stupid runaway mouth at all…
All of those half-formed thoughts ricocheted through her head in the instant between Lilah’s question and when Noa had to answer, and when she nodded, it was a little more guarded than before. “Yeah. ‘Noa’ is a girl’s name in Hebrew.” Okay, that was fine. No recoil, only a growing smile that Noa wasn’t sure how to parse. It did give her the chance to go on the attack before Lilah could do or say anything awful. “So’s yours, for the record. It means—”
Lilah nodded. “Night. I know. I used my Hebrew name for my stage name. It was easier to pick something that was already kind of familiar.”
Which led to Noa’s next major derail of the day. Would she ever find some kind of solid ground to plant herself on around this girl? “You’re Jewish? It doesn’t say that on your IMD—” She snapped her mouth shut before she could finish the sentence.
“If you say ‘funny, you don’t look it,’ I may just kick you in the teeth,” Lilah joked, her body very still and a hint of a familiar sort of wariness threading itself through her voice now that Noa knew enough to listen for it.
“Not a chance,” Noa promised. “For some strange reason no one ever tells me that,” she added with a flash of a grin and a wink. “Polish red?”
Lilah nodded. “And Russian blond.” She was thawing all around the edges now, her wariness gone and replaced with an almost shy smile. Noa’s heart dipped down into her stomach and twirled around her chest, leaving her dizzy.
“Do you keep?”
Lilah’s cheeks flushed and she glanced away. “Sort of? Not Shabbat or anything. There weren’t any synagogues in the town where I grew up. There’s one in Petosky, but that’s like half an hour away and we didn’t really go except for big events. My family does Passover, somewhat,” Lilah offered up with a little laugh. “My dad really likes matzah as a snack, so he buys it year-round. Except for that week.”
“Only a little backwards.” There wouldn’t be any judgment coming from her—there were at least five hundred of the 613 commandments that Noa ignored on a regular basis. (Maybe more, depending on how you interpreted the one about gossip.)
Lilah ducked her head and laughed again. “Only a little! But it works for him.” The little gesture broke through the shell of perfection, but the glow of her aura never dimmed. She was very human, suddenly approachable, and when she met Noa’s eyes again, Noa felt a pull start somewhere in her midsection. Ah, crap.
Lilah turned at the sound of her name and the moment—if it had been a moment at all—was gone. “Here!”
“We’re ready for you. Time for last looks, wardrobe, and makeup, and then we’re on to scene fourteen.”
“Back to the salt mines,” Lilah joked, rising to her feet. She made a little pirouette and fluttered her eyelashes at Noa, completely unaware of the effect she was having on Noa’s blood pressure. “Do I have your approval?”
Noa swallowed hard and found her voice. “Yes, yes you do. Your makeup, I mean.” She scrambled to pull up the continuity photo as an excuse to take her eyes off Lilah and regroup. “Looks good,” she said briskly, and gave her a thumbs-up.
Lilah sketched off a salute, paused to let the wardrobe assistant tweak her shirt hem and the hairdresser to replace a bobby pin, then headed for her next mark.
Noa let out a long, slow breath and tried to force her adrenaline to stand down. Her skin still tingled where Lilah’s fingers had brushed against her, and she swore she could smell the sweet remnants of Lilah’s shampoo. Stupid Denise and her stupid reassignments. Noa would have been safe if she’d been able to keep a little bit of distance between them, but now? A few more days like this one and she was going to spontaneously combust. All they’d find of her by the end of week three would be a little pile of ashes in the shape of a girl, topped with a silver star.
Jennet Alexander has been a game designer, a teacher, a singer, a Riot Grrrl, a terrible guitar player, and an adequate crew tech and department head for both stage and screen. She grew up queer in the heart of a large Jewish community in Toronto, Canada, and now lives in a much smaller one with her partner, two kids, and two cats. Most of her wardrobe is still black. Noa and Lilah is her first rom-com.
Oh, how I love this book. Let me count the ways! A) It’s perfect on the coming-of-age front, B) it has found family in multiple iterations, C) it has a Black lesbian heroine in STEM from a military background that I know anyone who was an overachieving child (and especially those pushed by parents) will identify with, more and more so the closer you get to Grace’s identity, and D) the romance is so. Freaking. Cute. It’s not what you’re picturing when you think “Got married while drunk in Vegas” but it’s such a great take on it that you are not gonna be mad about it!
Honey Girl releases February 23 from Park Row Books, so please make good use of those buy links below to preorder!
With her newly completed PhD in astronomy in hand, twenty-eight-year-old Grace Porter goes on a girls’ trip to Vegas to celebrate. She’s a straight A, work-through-the-summer certified high achiever. She is not the kind of person who goes to Vegas and gets drunkenly married to a woman whose name she doesn’t know…until she does exactly that.
This one moment of departure from her stern ex-military father’s plans for her life has Grace wondering why she doesn’t feel more fulfilled from completing her degree. Staggering under the weight of her father’s expectations, a struggling job market and feelings of burnout, Grace flees her home in Portland for a summer in New York with the wife she barely knows.
In New York, she’s able to ignore all the annoying questions about her future plans and falls hard for her creative and beautiful wife, Yuki Yamamoto. But when reality comes crashing in, Grace must face what she’s been running from all along—the fears that make us human, the family scars that need to heal and the longing for connection, especially when navigating the messiness of adulthood.
These are tough times, and if you, like me, particularly appreciate books that balance fun escapism with not entirely pretending there is an idyllic and just world around you, then Erin Gough has good news for you, in the form of Amelia Westlake (or, as it was published in the US, Amelia Westlake Was Never Here). It’s a delightful opposites-attract dual-POV contemporary f/f YA romance with one of my absolute favorite kinds of MC: high bookish IQ meets low emotional/social IQ, set at a school for the privileged that’s got some major issues. Or, as the official blurb goes:
Harriet Price has the perfect life: she’s a prefect at Rosemead Grammar, she lives in a mansion, and her gorgeous girlfriend is a future prime minister. So when she risks it all by creating a hoax to expose the school’s many problems – with help from notorious bad-girl Will Everheart, no less – Harriet tells herself it’s because she’s seeking justice. And definitely not because she finds Will oddly fascinating.
But as Will and Harriet’s campaign heats up, it gets harder for them to remain sworn enemies – and to avoid being caught. As tensions burn throughout the school, how far will they go to keep their mission – and their feelings for each other – a secret?