Saturday, December 31

*** Paige's Choice *** Top Reads 2016


Here are our top reads and the reviews of 2016!

Full Tilt and All In by Emma Scott 

Full Tilt 
5+++ Stars

Best book I've read this year. Hands down. 

Emma Scott has secured her place as one of my favorite authors with Full Tilt. I have mad love for everything I've read by her (which is all her books except 1 because not enough hours in the day). Honestly I wasn't sure that anyone would ever top Noah in RUSH. Yet Jonah nudged him out of the way and took center spot. Not by a lot, mind you, because Noah will always be one of my favorites, but Jonah is special. What Kacey and Jonah have is magical. And the truth in this story is exceptional. 

All In 
5 "Because love always wins. Always." Stars

All In was my most anticipated read of the fall, and it was perfect. Theo and Kacey traveled a long and winding road but in the end their happiness played exactly as the universe planned. While it may not have been easy and it may have broken my heart more than once, this duet and its ending were proof that love never ends and true love is a real and tangible thing.

Blood to Dust and Vicious by L.J. Shen

Blood to Dust
This book. All the stars.

Sexy. Take a break to find some relief kind of sexy.

Dark. So decadently dark that my even my little black soul was shocked. 

Swoon worthy. I am IN LOVE. Nate is my top favorite bad boy. Ever. 

Nate and Prescott are bound by ties that never should have connected them. Two people seemingly polar opposites prove that maybe fate is at work in the world after all. 

5+ "Obsessed" Stars

Vicious is everything a romance bookworm like craves. Cover: you better believe it. Just lick...I mean look. AlphaHole: Baron Spencer is the epitome of broken and bruised and so very unredeemable in a way that completely works with the characters and the plot. Strong heroine: Yes, Yes, Yes! Emilia LeBlanc is the kind of girl that readers look at and just know she's being exactly who she should be. Strong and quiet and the perfect counterpoint to Vicious. And, finally, a strong cast of secondary characters: HotHoles FTW. This group of 4 rich, entitled and deviously dark best friends are creating a series that I know I won't get enough of. 

Behind the Hands That Kill by J.A. Redmerski
(In the Company of Killers #6)

Blown away. Totally speechless. I'm not going to go into lots of detail because honestly, this is one series that you don't want spoiled (trust me, I love spoilers usually but not here). Behind the Hands That Kill focuses primarily on Victor and Izabel. I was completely shocked at the twists and turns. I thought I knew these characters but Ms. Redmerksi reminded me early on that I really have no idea. I will be honest and say that reading the first 60% gave me a bit of a stomachache because I could not believe what was happening and I was worried about what this meant for my favorite characters. The last 40% had my stomach in knots for completely different reasons. I started reading slower and slower towards the end because I didn't not what the story to end. If I had to choose my favorite all time series, this would probably be it. It gets better and better and I cannot wait for more. 

The Bad Ones by Stylo Fantôme
5 "Beautiful Darkness" Stars

There are some you love and then there are the ones that you just can't fully put your adoration for into words. That was The Bad Ones. From the moment I opened this book and started Con and Dulcie's journey, I was absolutely gobsmacked at where the story started, where it twisted and turned, and where it ended up. I fell in love with Stylo when she gave me Satan in Jameson Kane but I am officially head over heals in love with her dark and twisted mind after Con and Dulcie revealed and reveled in their beautiful darkness.

Missed Connection by K. Larsen and Mara White
5+ "Oh My Word. Brilliant. Devastating. Beyond Beautiful" Stars

My first book of the new year and I already have a new favorite. Having read both Mara White and K. Larsen, I knew that I should expect something that would twist me in a pretzel emotionally and plot twists would most likely abound, but I was still not quite prepared for impact Missed Connection had on me. I finished this book several days ago and have yet been able to pick up another book. Titan and Jesenia wrapped me up in their story and refused let me go or more likely I refuse to let them go. 

The Mind and The Heart by Kate Stewart
(The Reluctant Romantics) 

The Mind
5 "Do You Feel That?" Stars

The Mind was a story that I knew the ending before I ever started the beginning since I read The Fall. And yet my heart was ripped open and stuffed full in the most perfectly painful yet beautiful way. This was an absolutely stunning story of two people who completely embody the idea of soul mates and meant to be's. 

The Heart 
5 "You Own Me" Stars

There are times when a series grabs you and makes you feel all the things you never knew you could feel. The Reluctant Romantics is that series for me. I fell hard for the angsty journey Dallas and Dean took in The Fall. I laughed and sobbed my way through Rose and Grant's heartbreaking journey in The Mind. And I laughed, cried (happy tears, mostly), and smiled in pure happiness in The Heart while Jack helped Rose rebuild her life. This book is everything I love about reading. Once I started, I could not put it down. It may be Kate Stewart's best work yet and I'm still riding the high from this emotional and beautiful journey. 

Closer by Mary Elizabeth 
5 "Manic" Stars

Wow. Wow. Wow. 

Teller and Ella were chaos. But it was seriously the best kind of crazy. This story was mesmerizing from beginning to end. This was the first time I've read Mary Elizabeth and I was blown away by her story telling and her writing and her ability to make me part of this cast of passionate but perfectly flawed characters.

One by Jewel E. Ann
5 Stars

I love when books surprise me and this one did that. One was excellent and may be one of the best books I've read this year. It was unique and sweet with a hilarious heroine and a swoon-worthy hero. (It does follow the plot line for the Jack and Jill trilogy so if you plan on reading that series, this will have major spoilers.)

Beard Science by Penny Reid
5 "Cletus" Stars

The BEST! Penny, you evil genius. Giving us exactly what we didn't know we needed. I loved it all. Every word. Cletus and Jen were perfect for each other, for the story and for this series. As excited for this book as I have been since the first in the series was published, Penny outdid herself and made it more than I could have imagined. 

This is War, Baby and Whispers and the Roars by K. Webster
(This is War, Baby book 1 in the War & Peace series)
(Whispers and the Roars is a standalone)

This is War, Baby 
5 "Heaving" Stars

Holy Moly, K. Webster. Speechless.

This was superb. Unique. Dark but interspersed with giggles, passion and so much sweet. 

This review is going to be sparse on details because it's one that needs to be allowed to play out. I was shocked over and over again as I read this dark yet delicious tale. While the warning is there for a reason, the story is not all doom and gloom. And just when I thought I knew where the story was going, jaw dropping twists showed me that I definitely didn't. 

Whispers and the Roars
5+ "Go In Blind" Stars

There is beauty in the whispers and there is beauty in the roars. Be still my heart.

This book was pure genius. With a book boyfriend that will rival any other book boyfriend EVER and a heroine that moved me beyond words, it's obvious that this book was special to Ms. Webster and it will be forever special to me too. 

An intricate storyline that unfolded so delicately yet so powerfully, and built to a crescendo that at once made my heart sing and yet feel the absolute depths of depravity. It's clear that K researched and created a story as close to reality as possible and yet effortlessly wove one of the best love stories I think I've ever read. (Plus there were a few times it was so scorching hot, I thought I might need a cigarette and I don't smoke.)

Slave to the Rhythm by Jane Harvey-Berrick 
5 "My Sunshine" Stars

Holy Wow! AMAZING!

Right from the get-go this story held me in it's grips and didn't let go. As soon as it hit my Kindle, I dove in and didn't stop until I was finished. I read the blurb but there was so much more to the story and I was constantly blown away by the little twists and turns this story kept taking. From the highest of highs to the lowest of lows, Slave to the Rhythm had it all.

One Last Shot by Gillian Jones 
5 "My Matty" Stars

Ahhhhh. My Matty. If there is a better hero, I'm not sure I've come across him yet. From the very beginning I fell in love with Matt Bishop. I rooted for him, my heart broke for him and I wanted only the best things for him. Yes, I became a bit obsessed with Matty and his journey back to Claire and I'm okay with that because he's mine perfect for Claire. One Last Shot is a story of two people meant to be but having to work to find their way back to each other when fears and long held scars keep them apart.

Follow this link to see Kerry's Top Reads of 2016!

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