Tag: Holly Says

Updated: #cockygate Part 2: #Cocky Author Files Lawsuit (includes link to full summary)

Posted May 30, 2018 by Holly in Discussions, News | 12 Comments

Note: This is a pinned post. Scroll down for additional content.

Update June 1, 2018: Thanks to Euna Park for the updates she was able to post on the court hearing this morning in NYC. The judge denied FH the temporary restraining order she requested for the publishing of books with the word “cocky” in the title and removed Kevin Kneupper from the lawsuit. Kevin being removed from the lawsuit has no bearing on his trademark case. That is separate.

FH’s lawyer is really claiming that the word “cocky” is synonomous with FH in the romance genre. Wow. Considering nobody knew who she was before all of this came to light, that’s overstating the shit out of things. I mean, sure, NOW that might be true but not in the way I think her lawyer meant.

Author Liv Morris also attended the hearing and had this to say about the Cocktales: The Cocky Collective:

This is more great news for Team Romance. I’m super glad to see that Cocktales will be able to continue to sell books. I really love how supportive our community has been over this whole thing. It makes me so glad to be apart of such an awesome community.

Here is a list of links that Courtney Milan provided that includes all, or well, most documents pertaining to the lawsuit:

Defendants Joint Memo in Opposition to Preliminary Injunction & TRO
Tara Crescent Affidavit
Crescent Exhibit D
Crescent Exhibit G
Declaration for Jennifer Watson
Declaration for Penny Reid
Plaintiff (FH) Reply to Memorandum of Law in further support of Plainitffs Motion
Full Transcript of Preliminary Hearing on June 1, 2018

Here are some other posts that went up in the last couple of days:

Authors Guild and RWA Prevail in Court Defending Authors in “Cocky” Trademark Dispute
Judge Denies Injunction Request in Cocky Trademark Dispute
RWA’s Update on Recent Trademark Proceedings
The Cocky Trademark Author Writes an Open Letter to Herself in Response to Cockygate
How an Author Trademarking the word “cocky” turned the romance novel industry inside out

Marc Whipple has a great running commentary on the entire #cockygate on his blog so be sure to check that out too.

Posted on May 30, 2018: Rowena and I have been on vacation so while we’ve been keeping up with the latest nonsense with #cockygate, we haven’t had a chance to update until now.

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Updated: #Cocky Romance Author Trademarks word, Starts #cockygate: A Summary

Posted May 7, 2018 by Holly in News | 61 Comments

Update May 16, 2018: Kevin Kneupper received Notice of Institution in the “cocky” trademark challenge.


Which basically means the challenge has been filed.

In other related news, the website cockyandproud.com popped up recently, claiming to support 3 of the authors Hopkins targeted. Dusk Peterson on Twitter questions the legitimacy of the site, especially since they’re using affiliate links to make money, which they claim will be donated into gofundme (or similar ventures).

Notice from cockyandproud.com


Apparently three of the authors say they have no affiliation with the site. If you want to support them, buy their books on Amazon.


I hate to say it, but people can be assholes. Please make sure you aren’t getting taken advantage of

The crazy video Hopkins posted is up at Vimeo if you want to watch it. I’m not sure what to tell you about it. You’re welcome? I’m sorry? Good luck?

More links:

Vox.com: How an author trademarking the word “cocky” turned the romance novel industry inside out
Slate.com: Who Owns Cocky?

Update May 11, 2018: I had very limited access to the internet the past couple days, so I’m a little behind in updating this post. Faleena Hopkins deleted her Facebook account, along with the 1:42:00 video we linked to below. It may crop up again, but if you didn’t see it, you didn’t miss anything. I promise. The video is back up at YouTube. I embedded it below. The video is down again. You can read Jenny Trout’s live-tweeting of it for a summary.

Amazon responded to RWA’s request that no further titles be removed while this matter is being resolved. They agreed.


Prior to that, authors and readers noticed reviews featuring the word “Cocky” were being removed from both Amazon and Goodreads. I haven’t seen anything from Amazon or Goodreads direct about that, but reviewer Lillie tested the system by posting two reviews – one with the word “Cocky” and one without. The review with cocky was held for 13 hours, while the one without posted immediately. Oddly enough, she noted the review with cocky went live right about the time Amazon announced it would honor RWA’s request. If I were a suspicious person….

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Retro-Post: You’re gonna get yours…

Posted December 15, 2017 by Holly in Discussions | 12 Comments

*****As part of our 10 year anniversary celebration, we’ll be re-posting old reviews and posts that make us cringe, laugh or sigh all over again.*****

Holly: This post was originally published in 2008. I still love it when annoying/bad/terrible characters get their comeuppance. There’s something very satisfying about a hated character getting their just desserts.

This post was originally posted on July 3, 2008.

It’s confession time once again here at Book Binge. That’s right, dear readers, I feel the need to confess one of my dirtier secrets (remember, confession is good for the soul):

I’m bloodthirsty.

It’s true. Nothing gets me worked up quite like a sleazy ex, or a rotten family member, or whoever. And nothing makes my day quite like when one of those sleazy people gets what’s coming to them.

Sherrilyn Kenyon
is an author that excels at writing revenge-of-the-ex scenes. I remember reading Night Play for the first time several years ago and cheering out loud when Vane shows up Bride’s ex on the street. I love that. Kyrian showed up Amanda’s ex in Night Pleasures, too.

In one of the more recent In Death novels by J.D. Robb one of Roarke’s exes shows up and Eve has to put her in her place. I absolutely adored that scene. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read it.

I’m an equal opportunity revenge lover, though. It’s not just exes I like to see put in their place. It’s parents, aunts, uncles, neighbors, bosses, whoever. In Bet Me by Jennifer Crusie the heroine’s (Min) mom is obsessive about weight and constantly berates Min for it. My favorite scene of the book is when Cal basically tells her to shut up and leave Min alone. I still snicker when I think of it.

In a Harlequin Presents novel I read recently, the h/h’s parents had a hand in keeping them separated for several years and in the end the hero refuses to have anything to do with them. In the epilogue it’s been more than a year and he still refuses to talk to them. I love that.

So, tell me. Am I alone? Am I the only one who gets a wonderful feeling of satisfaction when a not-so-great character really gets what’s coming to them? Do you have a favorite “They got theirs” scene you’d like to share with me?

Tell me I’m not the only one…


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PSA: Authors, Don’t Spoil It!

Posted October 31, 2017 by Holly in Discussions | 1 Comment

For years friends have been trying to talk me into watching Game of Thrones. My husband and I binge-watch shows regularly, but neither of us were really that interested in GoT. Finally, Ames and Rowena talked me into starting it.

Normally I’m all about spoilers. I don’t mind if I see or hear things about a show I’m currently watching or plan to watch (or books I’m reading or plan to read). My husband, on the other hand, hates spoilers. He won’t even watch the next episode preview because he doesn’t want to know.

We both went into GoT without really knowing anything about it. I didn’t pay attention to any of the posts about it over the years and neither did my husband. So I figured, what the hell, there are a lot of twists and turns, I’m going to avoid all spoilers. Y’all, it’s hard avoiding spoilers when you’re 6 seasons behind in a series and the current season finale is just airing, but I managed. I didn’t see a single thing that spoiled who lives and who dies, what intrigues were afoot, or anything else. It was like we were watching it in real time.

Until I read The Time in Between by Kristen Ashley. My husband and I had just finished Season 2, but there was a major spoiler for something that happens at the end of Season 3.

The spoiler was a huge one, detailing the events of one of the major events in the show (what happens at the end of “The Rains of Castamere” episode, aka The Red Wedding). And it was just casually mentioned on page as a throwaway comment. The hero and heroine were watching the show and bam, the hero throws out a major spoiler, no big deal (except it was a big deal, y’all! It really was).

Authors, please don’t spoil real-life shows in your fiction books. When I whined about this on Twitter, someone said “To be fair, that spoiler is four seasons old”. 1) I don’t care. A spoiler is a spoiler. 2) The show is still running, so there are a lot of people just starting it. 3) I avoided spoilers like the plague only to be innocently blindsided while reading a novel, ffs. That is not okay.

So, once again, here’s a friendly PSA from your local book blogger: AUTHORS, DON’T SPOIL REAL LIFE SHOWS IN YOUR FICTION NOVELS!

via GIPHY


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Ten Books We Want Passionflix to Turn into Movies

Posted September 28, 2017 by Rowena in Discussions | 21 Comments

With the release of Hollywood Dirt and the making of The Trouble with Mistletoe by Passionflix, we’ve been pretty anxious for more of our favorite books to become movies. I watched and enjoyed Hollywood Dirt and I’m looking forward to seeing The Trouble with Mistletoe by Jill Shalvis come to life as well.

So that got us thinking. There’s plenty of material for Passionflix to choose from for future movies but here’s a list of books that we’d like to see come to life.

Saving Grace by Julie Garwood.

When Lady Johanna learned that she was a widow, she vowed she would never marry again. Only sixteen, already she possessed a strength of will that impressed all who looked past her golden-haired beauty. Yet when King John demanded that she remarry and selected a bridegroom for her—it seemed she must acquiesce, until her beloved foster brother suggested she wed his friend, the handsome Scottish warrior Gabriel MacBain.

At first Johanna was shy, but as Gabriel tenderly revealed the splendid pleasures they would share, she came to suspect that she was falling in love with her gruff new husband. And it was soon apparent to the entire Highlands clan that their brusque, gallant laird had surrendered his heart completely. But now a desperate royal intrigue threatened to tear her from his side—and to destroy the man whose love meant more to her than she had ever dreamed!

Rowena: Julie Garwood is one of my favorite old school romance authors. Her older releases are responsible for why I’m so romance crazy now. Saving Grace is one of my top romances of all time and I would LOVE to see it brought to life, the right way. None of that Rose Hill movie business.

I would freaking LOVE seeing the ending of this book come to life. When Johanna is defending Gabriel to Raulf? When everyone is taking the blame for killing a baron so that Nicholas doesn’t get in trouble? When Johanna is standing there and trying her damnedest to break Hallwick’s stick and then MacBain comes over and helps her? swoon I just want this movie really bad.

Holly: Yes! I would love to see several JG novels made into movies, but Saving Grace tops the list. The MacBain, Johanna and all the rest? Sign me up.

Slave to Sensation by Nalini Singh.

Nalini Singh dives into a world torn apart by a powerful race with phenomenal powers of the mind-and none of the heart.

In a world that denies emotions, where the ruling Psy punish any sign of desire, Sascha Duncan must conceal the feelings that brand her as flawed. To reveal them would be to sentence herself to the horror of “rehabilitation” – the complete psychic erasure of everything she ever was…

Both human and animal, Lucas Hunter is a changeling hungry for the very sensations the Psy disdain. After centuries of uneasy coexistence, these two races are now on the verge of war over the brutal murders of several changeling women. Lucas is determined to find the Psy killer who butchered his packmate, and Sascha is his ticket into their closely guarded society. But he soon discovers that this ice-cold Psy is very capable of passion – and that the animal in him is fascinated by her. Caught between their conflicting worlds, Lucas and Sascha must remain bound to their identities – or sacrifice everything for a taste of darkest temptation.

Rowena: I love the world that Nalini Singh has created for the Psy-Changelings and I would love to see it all come to life. I’m okay with waiting for it because it would probably be hella expensive but I’d wait. I think of all the books that I want to come to life, I’d want this one the most. I’d love to see DarkRiver, SnowDancer and the Psy’s up close and personally…on screen, of course.

This is such a smart world with lots going on so I think should it ever be turned into a movie, it would be successful. Oh man, to see Lucas, Vaughn, Judd, Kaleb and just…everyone? Gah. I want it!

Holly: I don’t know. I’d love to see the entire series made into movies or a mini-series, but I’d be scared they couldn’t capture the characters properly.

Just the Sexiest Man Alive by Julie James.

No woman could resist him—except the one he wanted most…

Cool, Calm, Collected…

Nothing fazes Taylor Donovan. In the courtroom she never lets the opposition see her sweat. In her personal life, she never lets any man rattle her—not even her cheating ex-fiancé. So when she’s assigned to coach People’s “Sexiest Man Alive” for his role in his next big legal thriller, she refuses to fall for the Hollywood heartthrob’s charms. Even if he is the Jason Andrews.

Confident, Famous, Irresistible…

Jason Andrews is used to having women fall at his feet. When Taylor Donovan gives him the cold shoulder, he’s thrown for a loop. She’s unlike any other woman he’s ever met: uninterested in the limelight, seemingly immune to his advances, and shockingly capable of saying no to him. She’s the perfect challenge. And the more she rejects him, the more he begins to realize she may just be his perfect match.

Rowena: If I remember correctly, Julie James wrote this book as a screen play before she was encouraged to turn it into a book. I’m not sure why it wasn’t turned into a movie because holy cow, it would be GREAT as a movie. I’d love to see that court scene with Taylor’s skirt come to life and I’d love to see who they would cast as hot shot actor, Jason Andrews.

Holly: I’ve read this book so many times I wore out two print copies. I would love to see Jason and Taylor battle it out in a RomCom.

For Better or Worse by Lauren Layne.

Will a budding wedding planner and her bad boy neighbor stop banging heads and start hearing wedding bells in the sexy second novel in USA TODAY bestselling author Lauren Layne’s irresistible new series that marries Sex and the City with The Wedding Planner?

When small-town girl Heather Fowler finally gets promoted from assistant to actual wedding planner, she’s determined to make it as one of Manhattan’s elite Wedding Belles. Unfortunately, her first client demands an opulent black-tie affair at the Plaza…in five months’ time. Heather’s days quickly become a flurry of cake tastings, dress-fittings, RSVP cards, and bridal tantrums. But what she’s really losing sleep over is the live music blaring from her playboy neighbor’s apartment all night.

Five years ago, Josh Tanner was an up-and-comer on Wall Street, complete with the penthouse and the migraines. But a grim cancer diagnosis made him realize there is more to life than the corner office. If only he could convince his pretty, workaholic neighbor to let loose, too. As Heather lets down her guard, Josh is surprised when he starts falling for the sweet, vulnerable woman hiding beneath those power suits. Soon, it’s Heather’s turn to convince Josh to take the biggest risk of all: love.

Rowena: Ooh, I’d LOVE a wedding planner movie! I especially would love to see Josh and Heather’s romance come to life. I’d love to see the Wedding Belles in action, the pretty weddings they’d plan and I’d love to see where Josh and Heather live, see them bicker their way toward that happy ending. I want this very much.

The Year We Hid Away (The Ivy Years #2) by Sarina Bowen.

She’s hiding something big. He’s hiding someone small.

Scarlet Crowley’s life was torn apart the day father was arrested for unspeakable crimes. Now the shock has worn off, but not the horror.

It’s a safe bet that Scarlet is the only first year at Harkness College who had to sneak past TV news trucks parked on her front lawn just to leave town. But college will be Scarlet’s fresh start. Clutching a shiny new student ID — with a newly minted name on it — she leaves it all behind. Even if it means lying to the boy she’s falling for.

Bridger McCaulley is a varsity hockey star known for being a player both on and off the ice. But a sobering family crisis takes that all away. Protecting his sister means a precarious living arrangement and constant deception. The only bright spot in his week is the few stolen hours he spends with Scarlet.

The two form a tentative relationship based on the understanding that some things must always be held back. But when grim developments threaten them both, going it alone just won’t work anymore. And if they can’t learn to trust one another now, the families who let them down will take everything they’ve struggled to keep.

Rowena: This book hit me like a ton of bricks. I was wrapped up in feels from beginning to end. I think it would be perfect as a movie. From Scarlet’s situation to Bridger’s? So much to work with and the underlying issues that are worked out in this story would be perfect to bring to the movie screen. Plus, there’s hockey. I really like hockey players. Ha.

Holly: Dude. SO.MANY.FEELS with this book. This would make an excellent dramatic romance.

The Kingpin of Camelot by Cassandra Gannon.

The Queen: Guinevere must save Camelot. Ever since Arthur died, the evil Scarecrow has been trying to marry her and gain the crown. If she and her daughter are going to survive his mad schemes, Gwen needs to find Merlyn’s wand. Fast. Unfortunately, the only man strong enough to help her on her quest is Kingpin Midas, a flashy, uneducated mobster dealing with a curse. Gwen is a logical, rational woman, though, and she can draft one hell of a contract. She’s pretty sure she can come up with an offer not even the kingdom’s greatest villain can refuse.

The Kingpin: Anything Midas touches turns to gold. Literally. The curse has helped him to rule Camelot’s underworld with an iron fist. He has more money and more power than anyone else in the kingdom. He’s convinced there’s nothing he can’t buy. One look at Gwen and Midas knows that he’s about to make his most brilliant purchase, yet. He’s about to own the one woman in the world he would give anything to possess. All he has to do to claim her is somehow win a war against the smartest man in Camelot, hide his growing feelings from Gwen, deal with his overprotective bodyguard’s paranoia about the queen’s hidden motivations, and adjust to a five year old demanding bedtime stories from a gangster. Simple, right?

The Contract: Gwen’s deal is simple: If Midas marries her, she’ll make him King of Camelot. It’s a fair bargain. Midas will keep her enemies away and she’ll give him the respectability that money can’t buy. She never expects Midas to agree so quickly. Or for their practical business arrangement to feel so… complicated. Midas isn’t the tawdry, feral animal that Arthur railed against. He’s a kind and gentle man, who clearly needs Gwen’s help just as much as she needs his. In fact, the longer she’s around Midas the more Gwen realizes that their “fake marriage” might be more real than she ever imagined.

Holly: I just discovered this author. She tells wonderful stories. This was a fun book and it would make an excellent movie. Think live-action Shrek-type fairytale complete with The Scarecrow (who is made of birds) and King Midas the underworld Kingpin who can’t touch anything without it turning to gold. Plus Avalon, an adorable little girl and Tristan, her mighty protector. Seriously, this would be an awesome movie.


Daisy’s Back in Town by Rachel Gibson.

When Daisy Monroe walked out of Lovett, Texas fifteen years ago, she thought she’d left troublemaker Jackson Lamott Parrish behind her. But some things you can’t just leave in the past. Now she’s back and she needs to clear the air by confessing to Jackson the reason she left him all those years ago. But Jackson doesnt want to know. When she walked out on him, he vowed he’d never let a woman get close enough to hurt him again.

As Daisy tries to pursue Jackson to tell him the truth, he tries just as hard to stay out of her way. Except, maybe, sometimes, not quite hard enough. One things for sure, the sparks are still flying between them. Will they ever be able to forget their troubled past for long enough to enjoy the present?

Holly: I haven’t read this in a number of years, but it’s one of my favorite Gibson novels. I can just see Jack threatening to fuck Daisy into a faint on the hood of his car, as they try to undo 15 years worth of anger and hurt.


Back to You by Jessica Scott.

He’s in for the fight of his life . . .

Army captain Trent Davila loved his wife, Laura, and their two beautiful children. But when he almost lost his life in combat, something inside him died. He couldn’t explain the emptiness he felt or bridge the growing distance between him and his family—so he deployed again. And again. And again . . . until his marriage reached its breaking point. Now, with everything on the line, Trent has one last chance to prove to his wife that he can be the man she needs . . . if she’ll have him

. . . to win back his only love.

Laura is blindsided when Trent returns home. Time and again, he chose his men over his family, and she’s just beginning to put the pieces of her shattered heart back together. But when Trent faces a court martial on false charges, only Laura can save him. What begins as an act of kindness to protect his career inflames a desire she thought long buried—and a love that won’t be denied. But can she trust that this time he’s back to stay?

Holly: This is another book that got me right in the feels. Scott deals with some pretty real issues in her novels, but I loved the way Trent and Laura worked together to come back to being a family. A military family dealing with the aftermath of a solider coming home from war. I’d watch that.


Clean Sweep by Ilona Andrews.

On the outside, Dina Demille is the epitome of normal. She runs a quaint Victorian Bed and Breakfast in a small Texas town, owns a Shih Tzu named Beast, and is a perfect neighbor, whose biggest problem should be what to serve her guests for breakfast. But Dina is…different: Her broom is a deadly weapon; her Inn is magic and thinks for itself. Meant to be a lodging for otherworldly visitors, the only permanent guest is a retired Galactic aristocrat who can’t leave the grounds because she’s responsible for the deaths of millions and someone might shoot her on sight. Under the circumstances, “normal” is a bit of a stretch for Dina.

And now, something with wicked claws and deepwater teeth has begun to hunt at night….Feeling responsible for her neighbors, Dina decides to get involved. Before long, she has to juggle dealing with the annoyingly attractive, ex-military, new neighbor, Sean Evans—an alpha-strain werewolf—and the equally arresting cosmic vampire soldier, Arland, while trying to keep her inn and its guests safe. But the enemy she’s facing is unlike anything she’s ever encountered before. It’s smart, vicious, and lethal, and putting herself between this creature and her neighbors might just cost her everything.

Holly: The world-building in this book (in all Ilona Andrews books, if I’m being honest) is so stellar I’d love to see it made into a movie. Dina, her Inn, Sean the Super Werewolf, Arland the Vampire…this would make an excellent movie.

Rowena: Yes. I would totally watch this movie. I’d love to see who they’d cast as Dina, Sean and the Vampire hottie guy and the inn! I would LOVE to see the inn come to life. Great pick, Holly.


The Iron Duke by Meljean Brook.

After the Iron Duke freed England from Horde control, he instantly became a national hero. Now Rhys Trahaearn has built a merchant empire on the power – and fear – of his name. And when a dead body is dropped from an airship onto his doorstep, bringing Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth into his dangerous world, he intends to make her his next possession.

But when Mina uncovers the victim’s identity, she stumbles upon a conspiracy that threatens the lives of everyone in England. To save them, Mina and Rhys must race across zombie-infested wastelands and treacherous oceans-and Mina discovers the danger is not only to her countrymen, as she finds herself tempted to give up everything to the Iron Duke.

Holly: Brook is another author who excels at world-building. Her Steampunk world really came to life. I have no idea who I’d like to see cast as Mina and Rhys, but I want to watch their movie.

Obviously there are many more we’d like to see Passoinflix take on, but this is a good place to start. Do you agree with any of our choices? What movies do you want to see Passionflix bring to life?


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