I’m thrilled to be here on Scorching Book Reviews today. Nix, thank you so much for hosting me!
Today, I’m talking about discovering new authors! As a reader, I have a tendency to focus all of my buying and reading power on my favorite and familiar auto-buy authors. That’s not a bad thing at all, but I’ve found that I also miss out on new authors if I’m not actively seeking them out. New and debut authors have to work extra hard to make a dent in a romance market that’s so rich with new releases and established authors.
This year I made it my goal to read more new and debut authors. There are some really great authors just now starting their careers, and these are some of my favorites! All of these authors had a debut come out in 2017 or 2018.
To Love a Scandalous Duke by Liana de la Rosa
This m/f historical romance has everything—scandal, murder, fraud, secrets, betrayal, twins, a hidden diary, lots of passion, and childhood best friends to lovers. Declan, a newly-minted duke, is trying to solve his brother’s murder and restore his late-father’s reputation all while dealing with discrimination due to his parentage (his mother was from St. Lucia), and Alethea is desperately trying to assert some control over her life before she’s forced to marry. If you like historical romance, this one is sure to please.
“Lessons for a Lifetime” in Teacher’s Pet by Hudson Lin
This m/m romance is a short story in the Teacher’s Pet anthology, and I think it’s the highlight. It’s about a Taiwanese-Canadian adult ESL teacher, Patrick, and an Ethiopian refugee student, Salim. This is such a moving, pure romance, and I can’t wait to read Lin’s first full-length novel Inside Darkness, which is out in June!
Under Her Skin by Adriana Anders
This m/f romance is a passionate and moving portrait of healing and love. It follows Uma, who is on the run from an abusive ex, and Ivan, a gentle giant of a man who helps her along the way. This book has some intense subject matter, but it’s handled with such care. The romance is sweet, sexy, and full of understanding.
The Pick Up by Allison Temple
Temple’s debut is probably my favorite read this year so far. This m/m romance is heartfelt, sexy, sometimes hilarious, and absolutely touching. It follows Kyle, a single dad and recent widower, after he moves back to his hometown to be close to his father. He falls for Adam, his daughter’s first grade teacher. I can’t say enough good things about this book!
Skin Hunger by Eli Lang
I’ve enjoyed all of Lang’s books, but this quiet f/f romance holds a special place in my heart. It’s about Ava, a drummer who is returning home to try to get over her bandmate, and Cara, a dancer that she meets on the way home. In a way, this book is about Ava learning herself so she is able to have a loving relationship. If paranormal or fantasy is more your style, I’d greatly recommend Lang’s debut, Half, which came out in February of 2017.
Take the Lead by Alexis Daria
If you love dancing, reality TV, sexy Alaskan men, and amazing Puerto Rican women, this debut is for you. I especially enjoyed the examination of reality television and watching the two main characters, Gina and Stone, reluctantly fall for each other.
Single Malt by Layla Reyne
It’s hard to believe that Reyne’s debut is only a year old because she’s now put out a handful of wonderful romantic suspense and contemporary romances. Single Malt, her debut, is the start to a great m/m romantic suspense series starring an Irish FBI agent, Aiden, who is still grieving the death of his husband, and a newbie agent and former basketball star, Jamie. This series takes the FBI partner romance to the next level.
Between You and Me by Lynn Turner
This debut completely blew me away. It effectively made me a lover of love-at-first-sight, and I’ll forever be a fan of Turner’s. This m/f romance follows Emanuela, a high-powered venture capitalist, and Finn, a scientist developing cutting-edge prostheses. This is an interracial romance with a black heroine and a white disabled hero—his leg was amputated below the knee after a car accident. I love that both characters are ambitious and at the top of their fields, and their chemistry is off the charts. It’s so good!
The Layover by Roe Horvat
This m/m novella follows Ondro, a man who fled Slovakia due to bigotry, and Jamie, an American ex-pat and researcher, as they meet during a layover in Switzerland. Jamie falls suddenly ill and Ondro takes care of him for several days. Their romance is quiet, intense, and so full of hope. This is a spectacular and moving debut. I read it in one sitting!
“Elixir Fixer” by N.G. Peltier
This f/f holiday romance is a free short story on the author’s website, and is definitely worth your time! Set in Trinidad, this story follows Anna and Gale, two best friends who kiss under some mistletoe. There’s lots of good food, a bit of grief, a distinct island flair, and bit of witchy magic. Peltier is an author I’m excitedly keeping my eyes on!
I hope you enjoyed my recommendations. The next debut on my To Be Read List is Falling Into Place by Sheryn Munir, which is an f/f romance that takes place in Dehli. I’m also looking forward to Brooklyn Wallace’s upcoming f/f debut Sugar and Ice, and C.L. Polk’s upcoming m/m fantasy debut, Witchmark.
What new authors have you recently discovered? Leave me a comment for a chance to win an eARC of my new release Life of Bliss! It’s a m/m romance about frenemies-with-benefits who pretend to be boyfriends, get drunk, and wake up married!
Erin has a bachelor’s degree in creative writing from Oklahoma State University and a master’s degree in library and information studies from the University of Oklahoma. Though no longer a public librarian, Erin still enjoys being surrounded by books and readers, but now she hopes to find her stories on the shelves as well.
Originally from Oklahoma, she currently lives in Alaska with her husband and spends her time dreaming up love stories set in the Great Plains. She is a lover of chocolate, college sports, antiquing, Dr Pepper, and binge-worthy TV shows.