Mac is trying to get closer to his son, Henry, whom he only recently learned about after the boy's mother died. He asks Olivia to share any parenting advice she can offer. Olivia thinks Mac is off to a good start. His son obviously looks up to Mac and respects him. But the two of them do have some odd mannerisms, and seem to sense things others can't. In fact, some strange things seem to happen when Olivia is around Mac, such as her seat belt getting stuck and locked doors that open magically for him.
Olivia, who was orphaned as a child, finds herself growing more assertive as she spends more time with the forceful Mac. He, in turn, learns how to be tender with his son. As Mac and Olivia discover their feelings for each other, odd forces seem to be converging on Spellbound Falls, and Mac's real nature is revealed. Can Olivia love Mac's true identify?
Chapman weaves a sweet, contemporary romance with a thread of the paranormal. You cheer as Olivia grows more confident and learns to confront things head on, and Mac learns how to put aside his powers and just be a dad to his son.
Rainshadow Road By Lisa Kleypas St. Martin's Griffin, $14.99
Lucy Marinn is a glass artist who lives in Friday Harbor, Wash., with her boyfriend, Kevin. She has a magical touch with the glass, which can sometimes change forms depending on her emotions. Lucy is blindsided when Kevin announces he is leaving her — for her spoiled sister, Alice. Facing disapproval from her parents, who threaten to withhold financial support from Alice, Kevin asks his friend Sam to court Lucy so her parents will think she has "moved on." But Sam had already met Lucy, and there had been instant sparks between the two.
Sam had a less than ideal childhood: His late parents were raging alcoholics who fought bitterly. Though he has an issue with intimacy, and Lucy isn't sure she is ready to love again, the two find themselves falling for each other. They learn to trust each other and their feelings and forge a strong bond despite their past hurts and betrayals.
The Duke's Perfect Wife By Jennifer Ashley Berkley Sensation, $7.99
Hart Mackenzie, Duke of Kilmorgan, is handsome, wealthy, powerful, and a rising star on the political scene. The oldest of the eccentric Mackenzie sons, he is used to wielding his influence to control those around him. But he is surprised by the sudden appearance of Lady Eleanor Ramsay, his former fiancee, who urgently asks for a private meeting. At that meeting she hands him a photo that has been mailed to her. A naked photo of the duke. The photo had been taken when he was much younger by his mistress, who later betrayed him before she died. Hart knows that there are more photos and that his political career would be ruined if they ever were made public. The impoverished Eleanor suggests he hire her so they can work to solve the mystery together.
Though Eleanor had broken their engagement years ago when her pride had been hurt, she and Hart still have deep feelings for each other. She is willing to risk her heart again to help Hart find out who has the rest of the photos. Hart had planned all along to go after Eleanor again to finally make her his wife, so he is glad the mystery brings them together all the sooner. However, their reawakening love is endangered by Hart's driving ambition and his political enemies.
Hart's brother Ian plays a major role in this book. His tale, told in the first of Ashley's Mackenzie books, The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie, offers something quite different in romance: an autistic hero.
The Darkest Seduction By Gena Showalter Harlequin, $7.99
Gena Showalter's Lords of the Underworld series, about immortal warriors cursed to be bound to the demons they released when they stole and opened Pandora's Box, continues with the story of seductive Paris, who is bound to the demon of Promiscuity. Paris must have sex daily or he weakens and will eventually die — but he cannot ever have sex with the same person. Until he meets Sienna Blackstone, the woman who initially helped his enemies try to kill him. Paris feels he may finally be able to find love with this woman, but Sienna is killed during his escape. In his despair and anger, Paris starts giving in to the blackness growing in his soul. He then learns that the god Cronus had intervened in events and enslaved Sienna and bound her to the demon Wrath. Paris vows to find her and free her from her suffering. As the two struggle to be together again, they must contend with the brewing fight among gods, angels, demons, and humans. The darkness and suffering that come up in Showalter's series can make you cringe, but the depth of emotion and love felt by her characters offer satisfying endings.
Bear Meets Girl By Shelly Laurenston Brava, $14
Shelly Laurenston's shifter books are full of oddball characters, strong females with attitude, and dialogue that can have you laughing out loud. Her latest is about Lou "Crush" Crushek, a by-the-numbers N.Y.P.D. detective who also can shift into a 1,200-pound polar bear. Distressing news that he will be transferred to another department (Crush hates change) makes him give in to an uncharacteristic bout of depression and overindulge in Jell-O shots at a party. He wakes up naked, with a huge hangover and a gorgeous and equally naked she tiger sleeping on top of him. Marcella "Bare Knuckles" Malone turns out to be a confounding, infuriating woman, and he's wildly attracted to her. She also happens to be a lethal "protection contractor" for a shifter organization and enforcer for the professional shifter hockey team the Carnivores, Crush's favorite. Cella finds Crush's scowling and uptightness just so "teddy bear cute," and it makes her want to push his buttons all the more. She also needs him to pose as her boyfriend to get her matchmaking aunts off her back. Dangling VIP seats to Carnivore games and a chance to get close to his hockey idol, Cella gets Crush to reluctantly agree. Of course, the two find their attraction deepening into love, especially when they work together on a case to find out who is targeting shifters for death.
Contact Lidija Dorjkhand at firstname.lastname@example.org or 215-854-4182.