Sara’s Favorites of 2018

by Sara

Overall, 2018 was not a great year for me as far as books and reading went. I felt like I struggled to be interested in a lot of the books that came out this year and then was let down by some favorite authors whose books elicited little more than a “Meh, it was ok” from me. These books, listed below, are the books that broke through my reading malaise and wowed me.

Thirsty by Mia Hopkins – I’ll be honest, I was prepared to hate this book. However, what I found when I got down to reading it was an original and sexy redemption story.

A Princess in Theory by Alyssa Cole – This Contemporary Romance is one of the times when it’s safe to judge a book by its cover. Just like its cover art, A Princess in Theory is a vibrant and beautiful romance. Funny and heart-felt it, it warmed my heart to see the geeky girl get the prince and be able to use her enormous and sexy brain.

Wicked and the Wallflower by Sarah MacLean – I’ve had a couple misses with Sarah MacLean’s previous books, but Wicked and the Wallflower completely hit it out of the park for me. If you enjoy Historical Romance, love capable, complex heroines and have a thing for rogues with a heart of gold, then this is a book you should absolutely pick up. Brilliant from start to finish; I can’t wait for the next book in the series.

Iron and Magic by Ilona Andrews – Fans of Ilona Andrews’ Kate Daniels series, myself included, hated Hugh d’Ambray. He was smarmy and evil and the douche-lord to end all douche-lords. So, it was particularly satisfying to see how the writing duo managed to redeem this despised character and see him find love with the fantastic heroine Elara.

Home by Jezz de Silva – Don’t be afraid to promote your book. I saw Home being promoted on Twitter and picked it up because I was bored at work. This was both a great idea and huge mistake. A great idea because this is a beautiful, incredibly well written Contemporary Romance with a May – December romance and a kind of forbidden love. A huge mistake because the writing was so good and the story so heart wrenching in spots that there was no way to hide the fact that I was crying at my desk.
Grab some Kleenex and pick this fantastic book up. I highly recommend it.

How To Date Your Dragon by Molly Harper – This Paranormal Romance made me laugh out loud. That’s why it’s on this list. Funny without being over the top ridiculous, with a well-plotted story and characters that were easy to root for, How to Date Your Dragon was great. Seriously, it just brought me joy and gave me the giggles.

Untouchable by Talia Hibbert – Upon first glance you might think this is a book about a nanny falling for her employer. You’d be right, but also really kind of wrong. Untouchable is a really poignant look at second chances, grief and discovering, sometimes rediscovering, oneself. With one of the most accurate descriptions of depression I’ve ever read, this book was amazing.

Magic Triumphs by Ilona Andrews – This book was a triumph; an epic ending to an epic series.
If you enjoy Urban Fantasy and haven’t started the Kate Daniels series you need to rectify that immediately.

Rebel Hard by Nalini Singh – I hadn’t read any Nalini Singh in a while and was really caught by surprise by how much I enjoyed the first two books in her Hard Play series, especially Rebel Hard. With a fantastic peak into Indian culture and the custom of arranged marriages from an insider perspective, as well as lovable and relatable characters, Rebel Hard gave me a serious case of the swoons.

Phoenix Unbound by Grace Draven – This Romantic Fantasy novel deals with issues of self-sacrifice, hope and finding home. From the world building, to the storyline, to the characters, Phoenix Unbound is a compelling page turner. I loved it!

Here’s to more great books in 2019. Happy New Year!!

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