I read QUITE a bit this year. Living in California, we’ve been on non-stop lockdown and I turned to books to help me escape. I have so many favorites! Here are my top picks.
My heart…these two books, Flock and Exodus, nearly killed me. I thought about these books long after I finished them. I still think about them. I will reread them in 2021. I’m not even sure where to start with this duet. This was romantic, very dark, weird town and people hiding things, multiple loves…just so many secrets.
I read and loved Jersey Six by this author in 2019 and picked this one up in the fall. It did not disappoint. This one is more of a romantic suspense. Livy (our fabulous heroine) is in college, and finds herself living across the street from Slade. He’s mysterious, lives in a house with quite the morbid history and has an amazingly well trained dog who Livy befriends. But back to Slade. Is he a drug dealer? Mafia? MMA fighter? So intriguing and hot. Great story. One click it now.
Getting this warning out of the way early…this was one dirty book. Taboo relationships with many strong themes that could trigger sensitive readers. I read a lot of dark stuff this year and only one book was a DNF for me. My tolerance is fairly high. This one, to me, was perfectly uncomfortable and had me on the edge of my seat. There’s a remote cabin, major snowstorms, Tiernan (our heroine), her father’s stepbrother and his sons. Tiernan’s very wealthy parents have died, she comes to terms with her lonely life and learns how to survive in the wilderness.
I read The Kingmaker duet by this author in 2019 and was super stoked to dig into Kimba’s story. Terrific book and with some unexpected and much loved depth. It was meaningful and tackled issues surrounding diversity. Their relationship was complicated and felt particularly relevant. It’s a beautiful second chance love story. Kimba is a highly accomplished professional woman who works in politics. Very strong, smart heroine. The hero, Ezra, is a strong silent type, plus he’s a loving dad.
Confession…I’m not quite done with this one. BUT, holy smokes do I love it so far. I’m listening to this on my daily quarantine walks and I may set a record on miles walked because I’m so desperate to hear what happens next. Books like this remind me of why I love reading. It’s an urban fantasy where the world is rich, and the characters are mysterious. I’m truly transported. I’m not sure yet who the bad guys are. The dialogue is flirty and witty. It was just voted top romance from Goodreads. It’s not the quick obvious romances I’ve been inhaling, and I’m loving it.
Shen is one of my auto buy authors. I ripped through her Sinners of Saint series and then devoured the spin off, All Saints High. Angry God is the final book in the All Saints High trilogy. I’m so sorry to see these stories end. Although, I bet the characters will be making some guest appearances in her other books. Angry God is the story of rich, tortured artist, Vaughn Spencer. He has a crazy amount of angst, and lives (as an art student of sorts) in a dark castle outside of London. He’s broken, damaged and angry. The heroine, Lenora, is his perfect match. Great chemistry. Beware…it’s the darkest of the books in this series.
Closing out the year with some other ones I really enjoyed:
Royal Elite series by Rina Kent: Start with Deviant King and work your way through to Rise of a Queen.
Beautifully Cruel duet by J.T. Geissinger: Excellent anti-hero mafia theme, very funny moments, especially in book two.
Beach Read by Emily Henry: sweet story about a romance writer in a rut and a crush from her past.
Not my Romeo by Ilsa Madden-Mills: light, fluffy, had me smiling from beginning to end.
Where the Lost Wander by Amy Harmon: Epic, absolutely epic historical fiction. Stunning.
Pretty Things by Janelle Brown: A grifter, an heiress/influencer, a huge scam and Lake Tahoe.