Romantic Suspense Series & Standalones you need to read!

DGR-Suspense

My reading addiction first started with PNR and the BDB series by JR Ward. But soon after I discovered Romantic Suspense and found myself a whole different addiction. I binged on this genre and to this day it continues to be one of my favorites. I love a sexy, heart-pounding and action-packed romance, so I’ve compiled a list of some of my very favorite series and standalones in this genre that I think everyone needs to check out. Whether you’re a seasoned RS reader or you’re hoping to dip your toes in this genre, there’s sure to be a book to fit your fancy. Please note, these are only the RS books that I’ve personally read. I love fellow reader recommendations, so if your favorite is not on my list, drop me a line in the comment section below. I’d love to hear from you!


Romantic Suspense Series

I-Team by Pamela Clare

Heat Rating = 7.5

This series has been a top favorite of mine and it’s still going strong 7 books later. It’s super sexy and easily one of my most recommended books when someone wants a great RS read. Though it starts out a bit weak with the first book, it picks up steam very quickly with the second. That’s not to say I didn’t like the first book in the series, but it gets even better with the later books. Having said all that, Hunter from Unlawful Contact is mine and mine alone. I refuse to share him! When you meet the man, you’ll know why. I just recently finished  the most recent release, Seduction Game (I-Team #7) and that was a huge 5 star! This series only continues to get better and Pamela cannot write these books quick enough. If you’re looking to dip your toes in RS, this is the series I highly recommend you start with.

(I-Team, #1)

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(I-Team, #2)

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(I-Team, #3)

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(I-Team, #4)

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(I-Team, #5)

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(I-Team, #5.5)

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(I-Team, #6)

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(I-Team, #6.5)

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(I-Team, #7)

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Tempting SEALs series by Lora Leigh

Heat Rating = 10

I’m a bit nostalgic when it comes to this author, because she was the one that first introduced me to erotic romance. Wild Card from her Elite OPs series is still one of my top favorites. But I’ll get to that series in a bit.

If you haven’t read anything by this author, then what you need to know is she writes some uber and I really do mean UBER alphas. They’re crazy possessive, jealous, and of course dirty talkers. Tempting SEALs is as I’m sure you can guess centered around men that are part of an elite SEAL team; constantly facing danger, most of which from the women that inevitably bring them to their knees. She’s had a few other series after Tempting SEALs and Elite OPs, but none have ever compared, so these two are the ones I highly recommend checking out.

(Tempting SEALs, #1)

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(Tempting SEALs, #2)

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(Tempting SEALs, #3)

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(Tempting SEALs, #4)

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(Tempting SEALs, #5)

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Elite OPs series by Lora Leigh

Heat Rating = 10

Elite Ops is the spin-off series from Tempting SEALs, though you don’t have to have read TS in order to enjoy EO. There are main characters from the Tempting SEALs that make an appearance as secondary characters in Elite OPs, so you’d appreciate those more having read the series first. However, there’s plenty of background given should you want to jump into this series first.

Having said that, I didn’t love all the books in this series like I did in TS. I have to say that the last 2 books were fairly lackluster. But book 1, Wild Card is easily one of my favorite books to date. This was THE romance book that first got me hooked on erotic romances. It was the book I first dipped my toes in the erotic romance genre and I’m still nostalgic about it. It’s a second chance romance and the hero is brooding, tortured. The heroine is sassy and takes none of his bs. Even if that’s the only book you read in this series, it’s a book you need to check out!

(Elite Ops #1)

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(Elite Ops #2)

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(Elite Ops #3)

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(Elite Ops #4)

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(Elite Ops #5)

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(Elite Ops #6)

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KGI series by Maya Banks

Heat Rating = 6.5

I’ve been a huge fan of Maya Banks since first reading her Sweet series, which was a super erotic, kinky BDSM series. Then she released her first KGI book and I was in love! It’s nothing like her other books were, which means it’s sexy but not to the level of the Sweet series. It has just the right amount of steam to enhance the fantastic suspense.

I have loved the first five books in this series, but unfortunately somewhere around book 6 this series began to lose some of it’s steam for me. Some friends loved them, I sadly didn’t. Having recently finished book 10, I’m beyond let down. I cannot recommend books 1-5, though. Even if those are the only ones you read in this series, it’s worth it. They were absolutely fantastic. Book 1 is more emotional, with a beautiful second chance/lovers reunited theme. It’s less on the sexy times, but not to worry, because the next books definitely make up for it 😉

KGI #1

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KGI #2

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KGI #3

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KGI #4

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KGI #5

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KGI #5.5

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KGI #6

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KGI #7

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KGI #8

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KGI #9

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KGI #10

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McClouds & Friends series by Shannon McKenna

Heat Rating = 9

Speaking of uber alphas the likes of Lora Leigh, meet the heroes of McClouds & Friends. These men are dirty talking alphaholes if ever there were some, but they are loyal and protective to a fault when it comes to their women. Even if they are unreasonably possessive in the process. But let’s not kid ourselves here, that’s exactly their appeal. This series is absolutely sizzling hot. I’d categorize it as erotic romantic suspense because those sex scenes are deliciously explicit. But it’s not just ovaries that get blown up, there’s plenty of action and suspense to make it for some entertaining reading. This series probably had some of the most villainous villains I’ve ever read. These people are FUBAR to sum it up. The characters are not perfect, but that’s also their appeal. It’s an addicting series and I’ve enjoyed every single book in it.

If you’re looking for some dirty talking uber alpha and crazy (and I mean CRAYZY) bad guys, you’ll want to check it out!

(McClouds & Friends #1)

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(McClouds & Friends #2)

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(McClouds & Friends #3)

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(McClouds & Friends #4)

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(McClouds & Friends #5)

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(McClouds & Friends #6)

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(McClouds & Friends #7)

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(McClouds & Friends #8)

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(McClouds & Friends #9)

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(McClouds & Friends #10)

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(McClouds & Friends #11)

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Masters and Mercenaries series by Lexi Blake

Heat Rating = 9

One of my all time favorite series EVER. I’m absolutely addicted to these DOMs and I never want this series to end. Let’s talk about this sizzling combination of scorching hot BDSM with heart-pounding suspense, shall we? If you haven’t read these books yet, you, my friend, are sorely missing out. While the first book didn’t exactly blow me away, don’t judge the rest of the series by it. Because not only are the books fantastic, they get better with each new book. And with 9 books in the series so far, that’s no small feat.

The series focuses on team of Black Ops specialists with a few CIA operatives thrown into the mix that are more mercanary that government sanctioned and each is a member of an exclusive BDSM club called Sanctum. Espionage and BDSM, what more can you ask for? The suspense and the action serve as the driver for the sizzling romance and all of it adds up to entirely unputdownable reads. I’ve loved every single book in this series. Without exception. I highly recommend reading these in order as there are villains that have story arcs throughout several books. While each book focuses on a different couplet that gets their HEA in the end, the story arc sometimes continues for several books. You’d appreciate it that much more reading it in order.

You’ll notice there’s a few novellas in the series as well. Those are fun and sexy little reads that I recommend too! Though they are not as action packed as the novels, they offer a little taste of the Sanctum life with a touch of suspense. You can read the series without the novellas without missing much, but why would you want to anyway? 😉

Masters and Mercenaries #1

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Masters and Mercenaries #2

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Masters and Mercenaries #3

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Masters and Mercenaries #4

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M&M
Novella 4.5

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Masters and Mercenaries #5

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M&M
Novella 5.5

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Masters and Mercenaries #6

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M&M
Novella 6.5

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Masters and Mercenaries #7

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Masters and Mercenaries #8

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Masters and Mercenaries #9

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Mine series by Cynthia Eden

Heat Rating = 7

What is it about this author that just does it for me? Is it her brooding alphas? Her uncanny ability to work in unpredictable twists into every suspense story she writes? Her bad guys that never fail to make the hair on my arms stand on end? Or the incredibly passionate and erotic romance that weaves flawlessly into every single one of her books? I’m obsessed with everything that she writes. And while she has some incredibly sexy PNR books which I’ve loved, her Romantic Suspense is my crack. I have a few favorite RS series by her which I’ll list, but MINE happens to be at the very top of that.

Each book in the Mine series (with the exception of book 1 and 2, which are about the same couple) focuses on a different couple and their HEA. It also has a finished story arc so whatever villain is introduced, you get closure on it. The characters from the next books typically make an appearance in the previous ones, so it does help to read in order, though you can easily read them each as a standalone as well.

Mine #1

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Mine #2

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Mine #3

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Mine #4

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Mine #4.5

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Mine #5

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For Me series by Cynthia Eden

Heat Rating = 7

For Me #1

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For Me #2

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For Me #3

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Deadly series by Cynthia Eden

Heat Rating = 7

I refer to this as a trilogy because the characters in each book are heavily interconnected. Each book, however has a finished HEA with the romance and a concluded story arc with the bad guys. I recommend reading this one in order simply because it’s fantastic! Arsonists, killers, FBI agents and fire fighters. *dreamy sigh*

Deadly #1

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Deadly #2

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Deadly #3

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Last Chance Rescue (LCR) series by Christy Reece

Heat Rating = 6

I first discovered this series years ago back when I was still in my paperback reading stage. Suffice it to say I have the entire series in paperback simply because I heart it hard. The premise of the series revolves around Last Chance Rescue, Inc which is an organization that employs the most skilled and ruthless mercenaries in the world to help rescue innocent victims from some of the world’s deadliest and dangerous people and places.

Each book focuses on a different member of the LCR team finding love. Sometimes it’s with the victims they rescue, sometimes it’s with their fellow mercenaries. It’s suspenseful, action packed, and incredibly sensual. Though you can read each book as a standalone easily, I recommend reading in order since characters are introduced in previous books and you’d appreciate it more that way.

Christy Reece also wrote a spin-off series, titled LCR Elite. The premise of the series is basically the same as LCR, though it introduces a whole new slew of characters. It doesn’t quite pack the same steam for me as LCR did, but I still enjoyed both books that are in the series so far.

LCR #1

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LCR #2

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LCR #3

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LCR #4

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LCR #5

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LCR #6

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LCR #7

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LCR #8

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LCR #9

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LCR #10

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Wildfire trilogy by Christy Reece

Heat Rating = 5

This series is a romantic suspense and mystery set in a small, fictional town of Midnight, Alabama. It focuses on the three sisters; Savannah, Samantha, and Sabrina Wilde as they try to solve their parents murder.

Each book introduces a new sister and her romantic interest with a finished HEA, while the mystery arc continues until the last book. So this is definitely a series you’ll want to read in order.

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Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor series by Lori Foster

Heat Rating = 6

I’m a huge fan of all things Lori Foster. If you saw my Ultimate List of Fighter Romances, then you already know I loved her SBC Fighters and her Ultimate series. She’s the queen of contemporary.

Men Who Walk the Edge of Honor series is her Contemporary/Suspense series about Professional mercenaries and the women that bring them to their knees. Now it’s probably more contemporary than it is suspense, but there’s just the right amount suspense in it to still make my list. It has that signature Lori Foster sensuality and sure to please every palate, even if suspense is not quite your cuppa.

Edge of Honor #1

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Edge of Honor #2

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Edge of Honor #3

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Edge of Honor #4

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Love Undercover series by Lori Foster

Heat Rating = 6

Lover Undercover is the spin-off series from the Edge of Honor series, but you can easily start this series without having read EoH. The focus here is undercover officers and their romantic interests. Lori can really do no wrong in my eyes, and this series was just as good as the one it spun off from. Again, I’d categorize it more towards Contemporary Romance than suspense, but that right touch of action and suspense has once again landed it on my list.

Each book is easily read as a standalone.

Lover Undercover #1

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Lover Undercover #2

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Lover Undercover #3

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Lover Undercover #4

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The Bodyguards series by Cindy Gerard

Heat Rating = 6

No Romantic Suspense list can exist without the amazing Cindy Gerard. The woman is the queen of romantic suspense. Her military heroes are absolutely to die for. Pun intended.

The Bodyguard series is what first started  my obsession with this author and it continues to this day, which is why you’ll see two other series by her spotlighted on my list. As for The Bodyguards, here’s how Cindy herself describes the series:

No assignment is too big, too difficult, or too dangerous for E.D.E.N. Inc., a West Palm Beach security firm. But in these novels of romance and suspense, when it comes to their own personal relationships, the forces of E.D.E.N., Inc. soon find themselves in deep water and sinking fast. These bodyguards will not only guard your body: they’ll steal your heart and fulfill your deepest desires. 

Bodyguards #1

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Bodyguards #2

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Bodyguards #3

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Bodyguards #4

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Bodyguards #5

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Bodyguards #6

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The Black Ops series by Cindy Gerard

Heat Rating = 6

The Black Ops is the spin off from Cindy’s Bodyguards series. Here you’ll find sexy as hell military heroes thrown deep into danger with a satisfying side of romance. This is easily my favorite series by this author to date and I’ve loved every single book in this series. And I really do mean every. single. book. They only continued to get better and better!

You don’t need to read The Bodyguards first in order to enjoy this series, but it certainly wouldn’t hurt. Each book is easily read as a standalone but I highly recommend reading in order since the characters do interconnect in the series and it helps build the excitement for each one since they’re introduced in previous books.

Black Ops #1

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Black Ops #2

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Black Ops #3

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Black Ops #4

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Black Ops #5

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Black Ops #5.5

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Black Ops #6

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Black Ops #7

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One-Eyed Jacks series by Cindy Gerard

Heat Rating = 6

If you guessed that this series is the spin-off from Black Ops, you’d be correct. Yet another fantastic series you’re not going to want to miss.

One-Eyed Jacks #1

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One-Eyed Jacks #2

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One-Eyed Jacks #3

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Bullet Catcher series by Roxanne St. Claire

Heat Rating = 6

The Bullet Catchers series is one that’s right up there for me with The Bodyguards. While most of Roxanne St. Claire’s books now lean towards straight contemporary romance, back in the day she wrote addictingly good Romantic Suspense. And addicted I was.

An elite team of bodyguards that protect the rich and famous, these men will guard the body during the day and make it shake at night. And it’s not all male Bullet Catchers either. The owner of the firm is one fierce female, that also gets a book in the series. It’s sexy, it’s action-packed, and it’s suspenseful. What else could you possibly ask for? Loved this entire series!

BC #1

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BC #2

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BC #2.5

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BC #3

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BC #4

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BC #5

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BC #6

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BC #7

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BC #8

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The Guardian Angelinos series by Roxanne St. Claire

Heat Rating = 6

This is a spin-off series from The Bullet Catchers and just as good if not even better. You don’t have to have read Bullet Catchers first to enjoy this series but I recommend you do anyway because it’s a must read 🙂

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Hostile Operations Team series by Lynn Raye Harris

Heat Rating = 7

Holy book crack, batman! I lurve this incredibly sexy series from Lynn Raye Harris. Though it had a little of a slow start with the first book, it took off flying from then. Sinfully sexy Special Ops military and SEALs anyone? Oh yeah! I’ve read every single book in this series and can’t get enough. I devour them in one nail-biting sitting. The action is high paced and non-stop and it’s oh so sexy! Huge rec from me!

In case you’re wondering, the books totally match the ridiculously hot covers 😉

HOT #1

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HOT #2

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HOT #3

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HOT #4

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HOT #5

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HOT #6

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HOT #8

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HOT #9

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Passion For Danger trilogy by Nina Bruhns

Heat Rating = 8

I discovered the amazing Nina Bruhns a few years ago when I accidentally stumbled upon this series. I did not expect to read all three books back to back and have them be as smoking hot as they were. Because holy ovaries were they hot! I refer to this as a trilogy, since the story arc along with the main villain is something that continues through the three books and the third book is what has the final resolution. The characters are all interconnected, though each book focuses on a different couple and their HEA.

I strongly recommend reading these in order because you’ll appreciate the story that much more. If you like your romantic suspense sizzling hot, you need to check this author out!

Passion For Danger #1

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Passion For Danger #2

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Passion For Danger #3

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Sin Brothers series by Rebecca Zanetti

Heat Rating = 7

I first discovered Rebecca Zanetti through her Brazen titles. Then I saw the cover for her then upcoming Forgotten Sins and I was intrigued. Yes, I’m shallow like that. But something about a man in a shirt stood out amongst the sea of shirtless covers. Then I read it and I was absolutely hooked.

This series has a very slight paranormal twist, but not in the way you’re thinking. It focuses on the four Dean brothers, who had unnatural powers genetically engineered into them by a black ops military unit. They were raised as soldiers that only know orders, until they escaped. Each book focuses on a different Dean brother and them finding their HEA but the main story arc continues throughout the series until the last book. So this is definitely a series that you need to read in order for the full effect.

Sin Brothers #1

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Sin Brothers #2

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Sin Brothers #3

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Sin Brothers #4

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Shadow Force series by Stephanie Tyler

Heat Rating = 7

A few years ago when I was on my PNR fix, I discovered the ACRO series written by Sydney Croft, which is the pen name for writing duo Stephanie Tyler and Larissa Ione. It was an incredibly erotic and addicting series which I was super bummed to see end. Then I discovered that Stephanie Tyler also had a romantic suspense series, Hard To Hold trilogy, which was another sexy little number though it didn’t pack quite the same punch. All this led me to her Shadow Force series and I found my holy grail!

Shadow Force is written in the same super sexy style that I was used to from Stephanie’s Sydney Croft days. It follows military heroes that work for Delta Force; a deadly and very black ops military group. Each book can be read as a standalone, though I highly recommend reading in order since each book in the series was absolutely fantastic.

Shadow Force 1

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Shadow Force 2

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Shadow Force 3

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Shadow Force 4

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Shadow Force 5

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Playing with Fire series by T.E. Sivec

Heat Rating = 7

T.E. Sivec is the pen name that the hilarious Tara Sivec writes her romantic suspense under. While not packing the humor that you may be used to from her Chocolate Lovers series, which are the books that I first discovered this author with, they’re great in a whole different way.

Swoon worthy military heroes, sexy romance and heart-poundind suspense all wrap up into some entertaining reads! While I had a bit of a rough start with the first book (A Beautiful Lie) in this series, which is actually free right now, the series certainly picked up with the next one. And it only continued to get better until the very end!

PwF #1

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PwF #2

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PwF #3

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PwF #4

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Burying Water series by K.A. Tucker

Heat Rating = 3

I fell in love with K.A. Tucker’s writing when she released Ten Tiny Breaths back in 2012. Man oh man did I love that book and the series that followed it. When I heard that she’ll be coming out with a romantic suspense, I jumped at the chance to read it.

Burying Water is nothing at all like her Ten Tiny Breaths series. It’s very character driven, with a heavy element of mystery and suspense, and in my opinion quite a slower pace. The romance is a bit more muted, but still very prevalent. It’s not quite as steamy as in TTB. Well, actually, I wouldn’t say it’s very steamy at all. But the story itself is enough to grab your interest. This coming from a self proclaimed smut slut. So while it’s not as steamy as my usual preference, I still love it and highly recommend to any other lovers of this genre!

The characters in the books do interconnect but they are very easily read as standalones.

Burying Water #1

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Burying Water #2

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Burying Water #3

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Burying Water #4

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Lost and Found series by J.M. Madden

Heat Rating = 6

Not often you’ll find a series about wounded veterans that’s not fluffed up or realistic, but this series certainly is. I strongly recommend reading the prequel novella, which is free right now on Amazon, The Embattled Road. This is the book that introduces each character and what leads them to be where they are. (Also, as of 11/13/15, Embattled Hearts is also free)

Basically, it’s the story of three embattled Marines that must deal with their devastating physical and emotional injuries in a world that seems to have turned against them. I’ve only read the prequel and the latter two books, but I can’t recommend them enough. Broody and tortured heroes always do the trick for me.

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Standalones

Linda Howard Must Reads!

I’ve been in a love affair with Linda Howard since I first discovered her with After The Night. That is the book that got me hooked on alpha-holes, and Gray Rouillard is a hero you will love to hate and then simply just love. While I highly recommend pretty much every single one of her books, the ones I will list below are my top favorites to this very day. I’ve read and re-read them at least 5 times each. They are my go-to rec for all things romantic suspense. The suspense is nail biting and the romance is steamy. What’s not to love?

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Flash Point by Brooke Blaine

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Brooke Blaine first hit my radar with the super sexy Desperate Man trilogy that she co-wrote with the fabulous Ella Frank. From that taste, I knew that she’d be the author to watch out for. So when she told me she’s coming out with a romantic suspense standalone, I was beyond thrilled and itching to get my grabby little hands on it.

Flash Point was unlike any book I had read. It was sexy, yes, but it was the story that truly grabbed me. Have you ever read a book and have it unfold before your eyes like a movie reel? Because that’s what happened with me here. The characters just came alive with every word. It had just that little bit of edge to it that I like and filled with enough twists and turns to have your head reeling at the end.

Dirty Ties by Pam Godwin

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You may have heard of Pam Godwin for her dark romance standalone; Beneath The Burn, or her dark romance series; Deliver. That’s how I first discovered her anyway. And if you’re a dark romance junky like me, I highly recommend you check those titles out.

Dirty Ties is very different from any of her other books, though. It’s a full standalone and it’s not dark. It’s an edgy and sexy romantic suspense that will keep you on your toes and edge of your seat form beginning to finish. Illegal motorcycle racing, vendettas, and smoking hot sex all compile together for one unputdownable read.

So there you have it. A list packed full of some of my favorite favorite romantic suspense books and series. Have I missed some of your favorites? I love recommendations! So please feel free to leave me a comment below and tell me which ones I should check out!

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