Elle’s Favorites of 2017

2017 was an extremely slow reading year for me. I wrote and edited more than I read and it doesn’t help that I’m not the world’s fastest reader to begin with! I also read a bunch of unpublished work from some talented author friends that would have totally made this list if I could have included them!

There were also more DNF’s than I care to count. But of course, there were some gems mixed in with the coal!

Dirty Boxing by Harper St George and Tara Wyatt. In fact, the whole Blood and Glory series is amazing (the third book releases in January but I’ve read it and loved it so look out for that one). Harper and Tara are a dream combo with some of the best writing I’ve read. They make mixed martial arts look incredibly sexy and their heroines are feisty and strong, despite all having to overcome their personal issues. This is sports romance at its best- low on the sports and high on the heat.

Undeserving by Madeline Sheehan. Oh boy, was this book a long time coming. Sheehan’s Undeniable series is without a doubt, one of the most popular MC series around. But after four amazing books in quick succession, we had a two year wait for this one. And it was torture. Undeserving took a break from Eva & Deuce, their kids and the club, and focused on Eva’s parents story. Set in the 70’s and with a much lower heat level, this was a big change for Sheehan. But for me? It totally worked, and it was worth the wait. Full of attraction, love, murder, betrayal and family, I was never quite sure where the story was going. Not one for anyone that hasn’t read the earlier books in the series, but if you have, get on it.

Fantasy of Frost by Kelly St Clare. OMG. Seriously, just OMG. This series made my year. I’m not sure I’ve ever given any other 4 book series 5 stars each but this one deserved it! FOF sits somewhat awkwardly in the market, billed as YA fantasy. Personally, I’d call it adult (or at the very least, NA) fantasy romance. The covers all got an update this year too which I was pleased to see because the new ones are much more enticing. And everyone needs to read this series! So much action, a kickass heroine (literally, wait for book 2 to see her really strut her stuff in the fighting pits) a swoony alpha male and a cast of supporting characters so lovable I wish I could be their friends.

Love and Decay, vol.1 by Rachel Higginson. This one was before my Red Hot Books time, but is there anything better than a zompoc with romance? Cos I think not! This is the first 6 episodes of a serial. The first 3 episodes were a little slow but each one got better and the last three were great. Lots of edge of your seat action, great characters and an almost annoyingly slow burn romance. More YA, than adult but if you’re a fan of the genre, it’s worth your coin.

Souls Unfractured and Hearts Recaptured by Tillie Cole. Books 2 and 3 in the Hades Hangmen series. Now, book 1 is good, with a mute MC president rescuing three sisters from a cult, and inevitably falling in love with one. These books follow the other two sisters. And wow. Tillie Cole writes dark, dirty, gritty, heart stopping romance like no one else. They aren’t for the faint hearted but if you aren’t already a fan of dark romance, I think these would turn you. Book 6 comes out soon so there’s lots there to keep the dark side of you satisfied.

Honorable mentions to:

Until the Sun Sets by Tara Wyatt (forced proximity/destination contemporary romance novella.)

Behind the Wall by Jane Harvey-Berrick (student/teacher contemporary romance novella. He’s in jail, she teaches the education program there so there’s nothing creepy about their relationship)

The Year we Fell Down by Sarina Bowen (college contemporary romance)

Happy reading in 2018 everyone! Thanks to everyone that read and commented on my reviews. Looking forward to bringing in you more next year!

Don’t miss Jen, Ronelle, Sara and Joanna‘s favorites too!


  1. Great list you have here darling. I really want to try out Dirty Boxing, I hear these books are great to read.

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