Today I am so pleased to welcome Annabeth Albert to Joyfully Jay. Annabeth has come to talk to us about her latest release, Arctic Heat (Frozen Hearts #3), which I reviewed here and really enjoyed. She has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving her a big welcome!


Hi! Happy reading challenge month! I’m so excited for this week’s challenge of older or younger heroes! [check out our Older/Younger Hero Week challenge for more info] I’m also so excited to be here today celebrating the release of ARCTIC HEAT, my newest release in the Frozen Hearts series set in Alaska. As with the other two books in the series, this one stands alone fine—there’s only the briefest of mentions of the prior books’ couples and no spoilers. This is my opposites-attract, odd couple roommates, snowbound romance as a seasoned ranger finds himself paired with a newbie volunteer for the winter season where they’ll be snowed in together at a remote Alaska state park. And as it happens, Quill, my stoic park ranger is over 40! So he fits right into the challenge week theme. I love writing heroes of all ages—under 21, over 40 and everything in between. I also love pairing age gaps together,  but beyond just my love of May/December type pairings, there is some thing so wonderful about writing mature heroes! And I wanted to celebrate mature heroes week with a list of what I find so great about older heroes and some recommendations as well!

  • Mature heroes tend to know themselves. They’re settled into their skins, and they know who they are, what they like, and what routine serves them best. We see this so well in Amy Lane’s BONFIRES where both heroes are over forty, and they are well-settled into their careers  and lives as family men. They both have routines that work for them, and indeed it’s shaking up that routine that leads them on the path to love and discovery.
  • Mature heroes are patient. Sure, they can have hot one night stands and insta-love romances, but these are also the heroes who are willing to wait. And wait. They make excellent best friends, waiting in the wings, or comforting landing spots for wounded main characters. Their patience at waiting for what they truly want makes for amazing slow burns and great tension. R. Cooper is one of the best at teasing out this sort of build in both JERICHO CANDELARIO’S GAY DEBUT and DANCING LESSONS, both of which feature more mature heroes willing to wait for their love interest to be ready for what they have to offer. The wait is so worth it!
  • Mature heroes tend to have their lives together. Gone are the iffy roommate arrangements, the temporary gig jobs, the ramen noodle dinners, and the random Friday night dramas. They own homes and cars and have plans for their futures. They’re stable, and when that stability is threatened, they tend make choices that try to get them back on even footing. They want to share their stability with others, which makes them great foils for characters who need to sort themselves out.  K.A. Mitchell’s BAD BOYFRIEND is one of the best examples of this sort of hero—Quinn owns his suburban house and quiet life, but he really needs Eli’s hot mess to shake up his life and give him what he truly needs.
  • Finally, mature heroes have a lot to offer. From literal billionaires to skilled carpenters to teachers and concert musicians. These are characters who have been around the block a time or seven, and they have essential skills and talents which serve them well. They get things done, know who to call and when, and are great in an emergency. We see this in Edie Danford’s TRU SMOKE where a sexy billionaire rancher can make things happen, and his prowess in doing so is super sexy. But it takes his younger co-hero for him to realize that maybe he doesn’t always have to be the one saving the day! However, along the way, Tru’s maturity serves them both very well.

I hope that you too love mature heroes! If you mainly read younger heroes, this is a great week to expand your TBR. I hope you check out some of my recs. And I’d love it if you checked out my mature heroes in both ARCTIC WILD and ARCTIC HEAT—I love writing older main characters! Happy reading!



A lasting connection needs more than simply surviving a winter together—they’ll have to outsmart danger, let down their defenses and open their hearts.

Owen Han has a fresh lease on life—he’s kicked cancer’s ass and is roaring through his bucket list. The former investment banker hopes to find his next challenge in Alaska, volunteering alongside park rangers and fulfilling his childhood dreams of snowy winters and rustic life. Of course, those dreams did tend to feature big strapping mountain men in vivid detail…

Ranger Quilleran Ramsey would like to be anywhere other than dealing with newbie volunteers. And really, the only thing he needs less than a green volunteer “partner” is the flirty attentions of a buff city boy who doesn’t look ready to last a week, let alone an Alaskan winter. They’re all wrong for each other, even if Quill’s traitorous body enjoys the flirting more than it should.

As the weeks pass, the two snowbound men give in to temptation. But can their seasonal romance last until spring? For them to have a future together, each will have to trust the other…while hoping that the harsh elements and omnipresent dangers don’t destroy what happiness they’ve found in the moment.


Annabeth Albert grew up sneaking romance novels under the bed covers. Now, she devours all subgenres of romance out in the open—no flashlights required! When she’s not adding to her keeper shelf, she’s a multi-published Pacific Northwest romance writer. Emotionally complex, sexy, and funny stories are her favorites both to read and to write. Her critically acclaimed and fan-favorite LGBTQ romance series include the #FrozenHearts, #OutOfUniform, #Gaymers, #PortlandHeat, #RainbowCove and #PerfectHarmony series.

To find out what she’s working on next and other fun extras, check out her website: or connect with Annabeth on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Spotify! Also, be sure to sign up for her newsletter for free ficlets, bonus reads, and contests. The fan group, Annabeth’s Angels, on Facebook is also a great place for bonus content and exclusive contests.

Connect with Annabeth: 


Annabeth has brought a 3 book set of the Frozen Hearts series books (open internationally) to give away to one lucky reader on her tour. Just follow the Rafflecopter below to enter. 

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FILED UNDER: Giveaway, Guest Post
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