New Release + Review + Giveaway: Thief Of Hearts by L.H. Conway

We’re celebrating the release of THIEF OF HEARTS by L.H. Cosway! Check out the excerpt and giveaway below!

 Thief of Hearts
By L.H. Cosway
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense
Release Date: October 4, 2016


Seduce the teacher.


Meet the cousin.


Make a deal.

Steal the painting.

Andrea Anderson has no clue of the thoughts churning around in the dark and dangerous ex-con’s head as he enters her classroom. In fact, she’s momentarily lost for words. Not in her entire teaching career has she had a student who looked quite like Stu Cross.
A widow at just twenty-eight, love is something Andie hasn’t considered a part of her life for a very long time. However, when lingering touches turn to whispered words and hot, searching stares, she begins to wonder if maybe she should take a leap of faith.
But Stu is in her class for a reason, and it has nothing to do with love. He’s there to burrow his way into her life and repay a debt, otherwise his family will suffer. Andie is the first person to show him true kindness since he left prison, and though he doesn’t want to mislead her, he doesn’t have another choice.
Before long, Stu can’t tell whether or not he’s acting anymore, and his feelings for Andie could throw all of his carefully crafted plans into complete and utter disarray.

**Can be read as a stand alone.

I organised my things and opened my laptop, pulling up the morning’s lesson plan when I heard the friendly chatter quieten down. Glancing up, I saw our new student had arrived, and I had to take a second to catch my breath.
Stuart Cross looked dangerous, in a James Dean, careless male beauty, leather jacket-wearing sort of way. He was tall, with chestnut-brown hair, hazel eyes and dark, expressive brows. He looked like he drank beer straight out of the bottle and drove a motorbike.
Mary placed a hand on her hip and smirked as she looked him up and down in a very ‘I’ve got your number, sonny Jim’ sort of fashion. I imagined she’d eat him for breakfast if he even gave her so much as a hint he was interested in becoming her boy toy.
And I, well, I couldn’t seem to take my eyes off him either. He was just so unexpected. It was like entering Alfie’s bedroom and discovering a newly finished painting. He seemed too much for our ordinary, comfortable little classroom.
He made eye contact with me just as he pulled out a chair in the third row and sat, a whoosh of air capturing my lungs. I rubbed my palms on my skirt and leaned forward, about to introduce myself when a student approached him. It was Harold, a small, bespectacled man in his early fifties, who liked everything to be done just so. In other words, he was set in his ways, and Stuart was currently occupying his usual seat.
“Pardon me, but I sit there,” he said, tapping Stuart on the shoulder.
Stuart rested an elbow on the desk, and slowly turned to look at him. “You what?”
Harold cleared his throat. “This is where I sit. I’m sorry, but you’re going to have to move.”
Stuart let out a quiet chuckle, shook his head and leaned back to spread his legs. “I don’t think so. I’ve just gotten comfortable, mate.”
I frowned and rose from my seat. Making my way past the desks, I felt the others watching as I approached our new student. I stopped just in front of him, briefly placed a reassuring hand on Harold’s shoulder and leveled Stuart with a strict look.
“We actually have a set seating plan. Come with me and I’ll show you where you can sit.
I’m Miss Anderson, by the way. Your teacher.”
Stuart took his time raising his eyes to mine, slicing his teeth across his full bottom lip for a second as he contemplated me. I rested my hands on my hips, trying not to fixate on his mouth as I felt a tiny flicker in some long-neglected part of my body.
“All right then, Miss Anderson. I wouldn’t want to cause a fuss,” said Stuart, standing to his full height and allowing Harold to take his seat. His attitude rubbed me the wrong way, but nevertheless, I led him to the only free seat in the front row. He stepped forward, his chest brushing mine before he sat. I caught my breath for a second; the contact took me by surprise.
In fact, it almost felt like he’d done it on purpose.
Yep, I was definitely going to have to keep an eye on this one.
4.5 Star
Robin’s Review

Author L. H. Cosway is now releasing the fifth book of the Hearts series. I’ve read and reviewed each book to date – Six of Hearts, Hearts of Fire, King of Hearts, and Hearts of Blue – all have Cosway’s unique, artistic flare that stands out in a sea of contemporary romance. Each novel of the Hearts series is loosely related to a previous novel in the series, but all can be read as standalones. This time, Cosway focuses on Stuart Cross, brother to Hearts of Blue male lead Lee Cross and the oldest of the Cross brothers.

“Seduce the teacher. Meet the cousin. Make a deal. Steal the painting.”

Andrea Anderson teaches adults who are seeking to return to college, helping them brush up on reading, writing, and other necessary skills prior to applying to a university. A widow at the age of 28, Andrea has had little interest in men since her husband passed away, but when Stuart Cross enters her classroom, she’s momentarily stunned. He’s tall and handsome with a dangerous edge. Stu appears to be exactly what he is – a criminal, just released from prison, who’s attending her class as a requirement of his parole. So when Stu begins flirting with Andrea, she’s flustered. And when he’s coming on to her hard, she rightfully feels skeptical.

Early in this novel, I struggled with the developing relationship between Stu and Andrea. Thief of Hearts is written from Andrea’s point of view, and for me, the attraction she felt for Stu wasn’t exactly jumping off of the pages. Having read Hearts of Blue, I was familiar with Stu’s background before I began reading. His gestures towards Andrea didn’t feel organic, and even when she began warming up to Stu, Andrea was still hesitant to give him her full heart.

But then we have the second half of this story; in my opinion, this is where the strength of this story lies. Cosway throws in a couple of interesting plot twists – the kind that had me sitting up at attention! Suddenly, Thief of Hearts became MUCH more interesting to me. The story became gritty, emotional, and this is where Andrea and Stu began experiencing all kinds of character growth. Growing closer under circumstances that weren’t ideal, Stu and Andrea developed real, deep feelings for each other. Now here is the magic I was expecting! The second half of Thief of Hearts REALLY packs a punch!

Thief of Hearts is a strong novel. It’s well-written, and as usual, Cosway’s writing flows nicely. I enjoyed the primary and secondary characters in this story. The Cross brothers were already on my radar from when I read Hearts of Blue, so I was pleased to read more about Lee and Karla, their family unit and to finally learn more about Stuart Cross. The plot of Thief of Hearts is unique, and it obviously required some thought and creativity to develop. Reading about the heist was very entertaining.

As I neared the climax of the novel, the author really pulled on my emotional strings. I felt empathy for Stu and Andrea as they struggled to cope with their mixed-up feelings. I just LOVE the way L. H. Cosway chose to resolve the story for these characters. I feel like I read two novels instead of one, which was a pleasant surprise! The strong second half of Stu and Andrea’s story increased my overall rating of Thief of Hearts to 4.5 stars!

 About the author:


L.H. Cosway lives in Dublin, Ireland. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favourite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books. She thinks that imperfect people are the most interesting kind. They tell the best stories. L.H. is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.

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