In 2013 Mills & Boon relaunched their RIVA line with Modern Tempted (called Harlequin KISS in the States), an imprint that held echoes of the Temptation novels of the 80s and 90s, and the sexiness of the Modern Heat series from the 00s.
Whether as RIVA or as Modern Tempted, I adored the books and was incredibly upset when the line stopped publishing two years ago.
So this month I’m taking a look back at the authors of Modern Tempted, at the books they wrote then, and what they’re up to now…
Heidi Rice is entirely to blame for my addiction to Modern Tempted books, from the very first that I picked up (in its RIVA incarnation) Cupcakes and Killer Heels:
Ruby Delisantro is the queen of cupcakes and salsa
She is in charge, with a great repertoire of quick retorts and snappy one-liners, and even sharper moves on the dance floor. And then Callum Westmore comes crashing into her life. One glance from those infuriatingly luscious bedroom eyes and she’s close to losing control.
Something tells her that Callum sees straight through the tough attitude to her soft-as-buttercream heart beneath. Is Ruby in danger of falling for him and – worse still – of liking it?
This is the perfect example of why I loved the Modern Tempted line. Ruby is smart and sassy, she’s got a good career and she gives as good as she gets when she meets Callum. And Rice’s voice shines through.
This is witty and clever and kind hearted – everything I want from a romance. Additionally, it’s got outstanding character development, which is emphasised through the conflict and also through the secondary characters. Adored it, and it’s no wonder that I was hooked from then on!
Rice’s other Modern Tempted books include:
- The Good, the Bad and the Wild (Nick is renowned for both his scripts and his bad boy ways…but when he meets quiet, shy Eva, he can’t get her out of his mind!)
- On the First Night of Christmas (When Cassie decides to let her hair down, she decides that Jace would be the perfect Christmas fling! Only, what will happen once she’s unwrapped him?)
- Maid of Dishonour (It’s been years since the night that Gina slept with her best friend’s brother, but when they meet at a wedding, she can’t help but be drawn to Carter once more…)
- Beach Bar Baby (Coop never flirts with tourists, let alone anything else, but when he meets sweet Ella, he can’t get her out of his head! Only when he visits her after her holiday is over, he finds her much curvier than he expected!)
So what’s Heidi been up to since the end of Modern Tempted?
She wrote a duet for Cosmopolitan’s Red-Hot Reads series with Mills & Boon:
- 10 Ways to Handle the Best Man (Sabrina’s the maid of honour for her best friend’s wedding, and she’s got the to-do lists and spreadsheets to prove it! But best man Connor’s intent on loosening her up…)
- 10 Rules to Sex Up a Blind Date (Tally’s been having the worst spate of first dates, and she’s been tweeting all about them to her sizeable following! But when she sleeps with #EpicHotLover Brent, how will she disentangle herself from her social media nightmare?)
She’s also written two contemporary romances for Tule Publishing:
- Tempting the Knight (In this rewriting of Rapunzel, Zelda is the ultimate wild child! But when she finds herself in a police station, she turns toTyrone Sullivan, her schoolfriend’s older brother. He agrees to bail her out and let her stay, as long as she doesn’t stick around forever…)
- Daring the Bad Boy (Both Rosie and Caleb are allergic to Valentine’s Day, so when they hook-up in an attempt to avoid the saccharine holiday, they couldn’t expect to become close!)
Heidi’s also published her first single title contemporary romance, So Now You’re Back:
Halle is the perfect television baker, and she’s incredibly proud of everything she’s done since her ex walked out on her and her two year old daughter Lizzie all those years ago. Only now he’s a famous journalist and is planning on writing a tell-all book! In So Now You’re Back, she hightails it across the globe in an attempt to persuade him to keep their private life private!
It also focuses on her teenage daughter Lizzie, and her blossoming romance with her ten year-old brother’s au pair Trey; something that I thought was as gorgeously written as the main romance!
She’s also got a book being published with Mills & Boon’s Modern imprint, Vows They Can’t Escape, which is due out in January 2017 (and having had an advance copy, I can definitely recommend!):
Xanthe can’t believe that she’s actually still married to her ex, and she’s determined to put that to rights before he realises that he can take half of her business! Dane’s just as shocked as Xanthe when she walks back into his life tells him that she wants a divorce, but soon they’ll both realise that they’ve been hiding secrets from each other for all these years…
Author Heidi Rice’s first love was watching movies so, not surprisingly, her first proper job was as a film journalist. But after spending years sneaking off to read romantic fiction when she was being paid to watch some crappy B-movie or other, she decided to try writing a novel of her own.
After several false starts, her first book, Bedded by a Bad Boy, was published by Harlequin Mills & Boon in 2007 (try telling that title to your mother with a straight face!). Nine years and 23 published novels, novellas and short stories later, and she has nabbed a couple of RITA nominations, had her work translated into over twenty languages, become a USA Today bestseller and sold almost two million copies of her books worldwide. In 2016, she’s particularly excited about the release of her first full-length women’s fiction novel with Harlequin Mira UK, So Now You’re Back and the fact her books now have titles people don’t laugh at unless they’re meant to.
As you can probably tell, she loves her job, because it involves sitting down at her computer each day and getting swept up in a world of high emotions, sensual excitement, funny flawed women, sexy tortured men and glamourous locations where laundry doesn’t exist.
She lives in London with her husband and two sons, and lots of other gorgeous men who are entirely in her imagination (unlike the laundry, unfortunately).