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The Secret Mistress

Mary Balogh (Delacorte)

This delectable Regency reminds readers why Balogh is one of the foremost romance novelists of our time. An adorable pairing of a breathless, insecure debutante and a noble but nerdy earl is elevated by well-drawn secondary characters and abundant, colorful period details.

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No Proper Lady

Isabel Cooper (Sourcebooks Casablanca)

A warrior from the future travels to Victorian England, where she falls in love with a magician who can help her destroy the demons that plague her dystopian time. Cooper's synergy of science fiction and historical romance could—and, we hope, will—spawn an entire new subgenre.

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Scandalous Desires: A Maiden Lane Novel

Elizabeth Hoyt (Grand Central)

In Hoyt's third novel of passion and drama in the 18th-century London slums, a widow who runs a foundling home helps a notorious pirate rediscover his ability to love. Historical accuracy, including an unflinching look at poverty and politics, sets this series well above its fellows.

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Angel's Rest: An Eternity Springs Novel

Emily March (Ballantine)

March (a pseudonym for Geralyn Dawson) breathes new life into the contemporary cozy romance with this sweet but never cloying tale, set in a small town where romance is bolstered by true friendship and community.

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Fitzwilliam Darcy, Rock Star

Heather Lynn Rigaud (Sourcebooks Landmark)

Rigaud's entertaining fan fiction for Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice deserves its promotion to paperback. Austen fans looking for something new will thrill to see familiar characters in a modern setting with a pounding backbeat and electrified vibe.

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