Maryse’s 2014 Top Twenty Five Favorite Books List

by Maryse on December 31, 2014 · 43 comments

in Book Recommendations

Happy New Year’s Eve, my friends!! :D It’s that time of year again!! Time to scroll through all of my favorite 2014 reads and choose my absolute favorites out of the bunch! And you KNOW that’s gonna be hard for me, considering the fact that, if I’ve 4.5 to 5-starred it, I thought it was FANTASTIC!! So it’s already a favorite, ya know?

But I’m gonna try and consolidate. ;) The keyword is TRY. I’m going to list them by those that I remember the most, in detail… still, without even having to backtrack over my review or the synopsis. Generally, all 5-star (and many 4.5 star) books have that effect on me, so make sure to check them all out, as I highly recommend EACH one). But… these just really stand out in my head loud and clear.

After I Do: A Novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid <— This one…. I think is my #1 of my #1′s this year. It BLEW me away. The incredible writing, that SAD beginning… the journey, the letters… just WOW. Brilliant. Nothing too out there, but such a realistic read. I loved these characters and I felt as if they were truly real, and each moment played out authentically. Perfection. I said: “Pure reading entertainment for those of us that love a good love story, but that enjoy working for it, every step of the way. And I don’t mean that in an arduous or hard read kind of way. Working for this love story isn’t going to exhaust you. It will exhilarate you. Adrenalize you. Excite you and devastate you, and back again (and not necessarily in that order). It is laden in realistic moments. Moments that you can feeeeeel deep inside your heart, and your stomach, along with the characters.“ In fact I loved it SO much that I immediately started her other standalone book and loved it almost just as much. This is my new *wow* author. Can’t wait for more! (Read the rest of my book review here).

Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan <— An early 2014 STANDOUT and absolute favorite that everything read after had to measure up to. LOL!!! Well… no, I mean every 5-star read was it’s own awesomeness, this year, but this one was just so good for me, had such an “old school” indie feel from back when I first started reading those pure, angsty, daring indies from back in 2011, and WOW. I was so excited about this!! He’s a recluse, she’s new in town, she can’t help but try and make friends with him, and he wants nothing to do with it. At first. What I loved? Is that the author allowed us to live the entire “meet cute” to disinterest, to eventual friends to… so much more. What I said in my review? “I loved these people, and I absolutely loved the pacing. Gradual and tentative, but constantly progressing and always had me brimming with anticipation. Everything made sense. It was EXACTLY as I think it would play out in real life.” Yep!!! She let it play out in it’s entirety and I was SO attached to these characters by the end, I could never forget this book. MUST READ!!! Check out my review here.

Ugly Love: A Novel by Colleen Hoover <— One of my forever favorite authors of all time, each book she releases steals me away, breaks my heart… MAKES my heart and drops me back off at home all melancholy and happy at the same time. Missing her world. Her characters. Her gorgeous stories. And this one ROCKED MY WORLD!!! Heartbreaking pasts, trust issues, falling in love… everything. But SO much more. I said: “This book felt normal. Totally connectable. Totally relatable, and a fun start, even though it was intense and super-tragic at times. It had all of Colleen’s writing charm, her relatable characters and profound (yet often lighthearted, too) feel to it. And yes!! It’s got its very poetic moments, but by that, I mean… thoughts and feelings, comparisons… so eloquently put together (but so raw in their words) that… that was poetic, to me.” and I’m still right there! (read the rest of my review here).

Forever, Interrupted: A Novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid <— The one I read right after… “After I Do” and I loved it almost as much. Both are standalones and have nothing to do with each other… other than… they are both fabulously written by the same author, chock-full of realistic emotion and angst and they will both make you cry. Especially this one. Okay… this one? Maybe “cry” is not the right word. More like… *sob*. Just to give you an idea, here is a bit from my review: “And WHAT. AN. ENDING!!! I was blown away by that last line, eek but don’t you dare go look!!!!!! ;) I was just… moved beyond belief, stunned into silence as big fat tears plopped off my cheeks, soaking my pajama top. And then I backed up, and re-read that last chapter again. And sobbed some more. Yep. Sob-inducing, I think I cried during at least 4 different parts. And not just a few tears either. Had to put down the book, hug my pillow and cry into it.” WOW. THAT. ENDING!!!!!!!!! *whoooooooo* one of the best endings ever. I’d almost liken it to the awesome ending of “The Sea of Tranquility“. Not in what it means per se… but in that depth. That pure genius. That *oomph* and impact. She is my new/latest favorite author! UNFORGETTABLE!!!!! Read my review.

Loving Mr. Daniels by Brittainy Cherry <— One of my absolute favorite teacher-student romances out there (er… next to Slammed, of course. THAT was my favorite. And maybe even my first of the genre). ;) BUT!!! THIS one gave me that feeling, you know? Not too sordid, not too easy, delicious angst and lots and lots of emotion. Everything I crave in a forbidden romance book with not too much “forbidden” that I am constantly trying to justify my love for it, ya know? But! Just enough forbidden to keep me on my toes and the butterflies fluttering. A bit from my review: “I haven’t read all of ‘em, so I might be missing out on another one, but last night? This morning? THIS!!!!!! This has been the one that has brought me all of those delicious “Slammed” feels. This was the one that made me tear up, over and over again (and for various reasons). Yes. I was that connected! This is the one that made me cry real tears. Twice.“ See my review.

Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma <— Speaking of forbidden, I gotta put this one on the list. Oh sure, it’s not one from 2014, but I read it for the first tie this year so it counts! And I KNEW… I JUST KNEW this was going to be a 5-star read a few years ago when it was first recommended to me. Over and over again. A bit from my review: “I purchased this one, in all of it’s full-priced glory (oh wow, I paid even more for it, back then!!) just on the recommendations alone (intense, insistent, adamant, emotional recommendations came my way every single time this book was mentioned).“ Once we all came out of the forbidden closet, this ranked at the top of our eeeeeeeeep!!!!-list. This!! THIS will take you out of your comfort zone and never let you go back. THIS is that read that has you questioning what exactly you’re “rooting” for. THIS will have you swooning and sobbing and face-palming as your logic kicks and and says WHAT ARE YOU THINKING!??? And you heart kicks in… and well… kicks your logic in the butt. LOL!!! PURE emotional attachment/angst/love/extreme-discomfort. It took me years to read i ’cause I knew… oh yes. I knew. BUT i finally read it this year and THIS is UNFORGETTABLE. I can tell you from start to finish every single detail, and I read it months ago. See my review.

Play (Stage Dive Series Book 2) by Kylie Scott <— Here’s my PURE GUILTY ROCK STAR PLEASURE of the bunch. No. Wait. I have two. ;) But this is the first one I’m going to talk about ’cause I was so sure Mal would not be “my guy”. Too funny, too silly, too laid back. You know me and the intense, brooding bad boy heroes. Mal was a rock star, yesssss, but too much of a clown for the brooding. ;) But I loved him like CRAZY! A bit from my review: “This book is a must read, for those that love good ol’ fashion rock-star infatuation romance. Lots of sweeeeeeet laughs, a HUGE crush, and boy is it steeeeeeeamy (even though it’s kind of a slow burn at first <— which makes it THAT much better the whole way through). Oh. And plenty of angst in so MANY ways. I’m telling you, my heart felt it all.” Check out the rest of my review here.

Lovely Trigger (Tristan & Danika Book 3) by R.K. Lilley <— Actually this WHOLE Tristan & Danika Series rocks my world and turned into a whole 5-star fun-fest, but since this was the last of the series and the one I 5-starred, I’m featuring it. BUT! I’ll be posting my review only for book #1 (so as not to spoil it for any new readers). Rock star romance and pure drama and angst and breakups and misunderstandings and OH NO HE DIDN’T moments and everything in between! A bit from my review of this book (non-spoilerish): “This truly is one of those “old-school” indie bad-boy series the likes of those we fell in love with way back when. I’ve been on a search ever since and have successfully found more, but believable angsty love-story treasures like this are kind of rare, ya know? And even more so, when the first book hooks you (and keeps you) from the start, the second book is even better (and turns your world upside down for hours on end) and the final book proves to be the best one of ‘em all. As was the case (for me) with this one!” And here is my review of book #1.

Love, in English by Karina Halle <— One that was pure contemporary romance, but with a forbidden romance twist that made many squirm. A beautiful and exciting (and hilarious) summer trip to Spain, where it was a sort of english immersion program for the spaniards that wanted to learn the language. And SHE… was one of the teachers. A story of strangers that become friends, of friendships forming in a different country, bonds formed that are stronger than the expiration threatening to end their time together… and yet. Heartache. Loved it! And… Karina introduced me to Lana Del Rey with this gorgeous, bittersweet story. GOD THAT SCENE. *sob* A bit from my review: “That slow and steady climb (aka “slow burn”), the anticipation, the delicious nervousness fluttering in your stomach, as the wistful yearning to satisfy your hearts newfound desire builds. You tell yourself it won’t be that bad. You’ve got a handle on this. Even though you know better. You’re fooling yourself and the fact that your heart is skipping beats solidifies that knowledge.” (Read the rest of my review here).

Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher <— Pure Tarryn Fisher!!!! Dark, crazy, scary, and purely emotional. An intense love story that made so many of us cry. Crazy twists, I swear it gave me a panic attack at a certain point, but one thing is for sure… I could NOT put this one down. One full-on straight thriller-romance read for me. Romance? I dunno. Yes. No. YES. But a la “Tarryn”. Love is never pretty, never easy, with her. It’s raw, it hurts, and it may or may not have a happily ever after. ;) A bit from my review? “I… ache. My stomach aches. My chest aches. My back aches. My overly-clenched jaw aches. It’s the bad kind of ache (but a good one, too). And I cherish every bit of the pain I’m in. Wow. What an unforgettable way to spend a Sunday.” Read the rest of my review, here.

Bright Side by Kim Holden <— And one that I 4.5 starred. An honorable mention that really feels like a 5-star to me, today… so I’m moving it up. ;)  MADE ME SOB!!!!! That’s all I’m saying. No dry eyes in our bunch. I’m certain of it! “ Y’all wanted me to drown in my own tears, didn’t you? Well I can’t say you didn’t warn me. Bunch of meanies. *shakes head* rolleyes P.S. I glare at y’all with love. And thanks. And rainbows and unicorns. ;)” (Read the rest of my review here).

So these are the ones that made me react BIG time this year, but they aren’t the only ones. I absolutely LOVED these, too:

  • Book Review – Deeper by Robin York <— Pure romance angst and a total guilty-pleasure read! A bit from my review: “The heartwarming scenes, the kindle-throwing moments, the realizations. The despair, the strength. The growth. I experienced it all, and I “got” them.
  • Book Review – Push by Claire Wallis <— A romance thriller that kept me on the edge of my seat the whole way through. And then… WHOA!!!!  A bit from my review: ”Excuse me, while I pick my jaw up off the floor. I’m just sitting here. Stunned. Dying for the next one. DYING!!!!
  • Book Review – 53 Letters For My Lover by Leylah Attar <— Forbidden love! A bit from my review: ”With it’s gorgeous writing, exquisite detail and a thoughtful, cautious yet raw exploration of something that is absolutely illicit. I say “gentle” in it’s approach compared to other books of this genre, but not so gentle that you don’t actually feel it. You feel it. BIG TIME.”
  • Book Review – Drowning Instinct by Ilsa J. Bick <— More forbidden love! Student-teacher romance! A bit from my review: ”But as in all of these “types” of stories… there is so much more to them than what is first presented. Secrets. Struggles. Suspicions. Saviors.”
  • Book Review – Black Lies by Alessandra Torre <— TWISTY TURNY and gasp-worthy!!!! Love triangle that will blow your mind! A bit from my review: ”Now I’m just going to say… go in BLIND with this one, please!!! If you’re in the mood for a crazy, twisty romance story, then don’t even bother reading the rest of this review (for now). I gave it 4.5 stars (leaning on 5 stars), so just know that I loved it, so many fellow readers loved it, and it has a few *gasp-worthy* twists that most don’t even see coming.
  • Book Review – Rainfall by Melissa Delport <— Another fantastic twisty-turns read!! Pure surprise. It twisted a few times and even when I thought I “knew” there was SO much more to know… A bit from my review: ”…twists and turns and I was right for some, and wrong for others but… no matter what I managed to guess, I was on the edge of my seat for the entire second half, and couldn’t put it down. WOW what a ride!!!
  • Book Review – Changing Course by Aly Martinez <— One of the most unique “normal” love stories this year! Hilarious, has an awesome cast of characters, and totally intense! A bit from my review: ”It had EVERYTHING!!! While there was an incredible heart wrenching depth to the main part of this heartbreaking love story, there was plenty of humor to keep it from getting too heavy. It had all of that “emotionally dark” potential, but it never drowned us in it.
  • Book Review – Crazy Good by Rachel Robinson <— Perfect title for this book!!! Military romance that had me in tears. A bit from my review: ”I LOVED it. Almost every single second of it (with maybe a tiny slow-ish “lull” in the “comfort zone” in the middle). But I promise you. You don’t stay comfortable for long.”
  • Book Review – Hard Time by Cara McKenna <— She works in the prison… and falls for a prisoner. A bit from my review: ”I love a book that makes me think. Doubt it. Doubt myself. Doubt my sanity. And maybe even change my mind, even if it’s just temporary. Like… for instance, this book.
  • Book Review – Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover <— another unique, yet pure Colleen Hoover treasure!! Love triangle, funny friends, grumpy friends. It’s SO good! A bit from my review: ”Sweeeeeeeeet!!!! But… daring. Not CRAZY daring… but she definitely took ‘em somewhere that surprised the heck out of me.
  • Book Review – The Plan by Qwen Salsbury <— One of my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE romantic comedies. Her internal dialogue had me rolling, laughing!!! SHE IS AWESOME! And he was SO not into her. *snort* A bit from my review: ”OMG you guys. Seriously. I’m not usually THAT into “romantic comedies” but this one just did it for me. It made me work for the “potential” romance (’cause you know… maybe HE’S not the one… I won’t say, you never know… *lips sealed*), but it had me laughing so often, and had me feeling so often, that it just felt like fun. The perfect Sunday afternoon read. The perfect anytime read.
  • Book Review – Transcendence by Shay Savage <— most unique love story of the year! Falling in love with a caveman? ME? Yep! A bit from my review: ”An unconventional, delightfully weird love story. Weird… but not quirky or corny, you know? Just… right up our alley, and I loved it!
  • Book Review – Come to Me Quietly by A.L. Jackson <— Has that “old-school-indie” damaged and brooding bad-boy feel!! A bit from my review: ”Fantastic angsty potential love story, that had just enough of everything to keep me guessing, torturing me just right. You know I love it when it hurts, and this one stung real nice!
  • Book Review – Remembering Us by Stacey Lynn <— Memory loss and she’s trying to piece her life back together… my heart!!! A bit from my review: ”That’s part of what made this an exciting, unputtdownable read. It’s secrets were gradually revealed which kept me guessing to the very end. Well paced, and it kept me emotionally invested. Oh yes, this one is not just “mystery” and secrets. It’s about emotion and love.

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{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

Jamie@Addicted2Heroines December 31, 2014 at 6:54 PM

Fantastic list! I had several of these on my own best of 2014 list. One series that I absolutely adored this year was Twist Me/Keep Me by Anna Zaires. It’s really dark and a bit disturbing, but I am obsessed with it!

Happy New Year!

Lise December 31, 2014 at 7:07 PM

Yesss.. Mud Vein, Bright Side, After I Do, Archer, Black Lies and Transcedence are on my best of 2014 list :-)

Carol December 31, 2014 at 7:08 PM

My Amazon gift cards and I have been waiting for this list! Fortunately I have most of them. Great choices as always! Time to go one click!

bev December 31, 2014 at 7:10 PM

I can’t believe it is the last day of the year. So, I finally sat down to figure out my favorite reads. I can’t say how many stars because I really do not rate them, these are just the books I enjoyed the most. I did not squirrel and when I had to put them down could not wait to pick them back up again. These are in no particular order. I’m not even going to try to be as eloquent as Maryse in expressing what I chose them, lol.
1. Play by Kylie Scott. Mal was a breath of fresh air in the world of romance heroes.
2. Puddle Jumping by Amber Johnson. Just so sweet.
3. Worth the Fall by Claudia Connor
4.Without Words by Ellen O’Connell. Reminded me how much I love a western.
5. Deeper & Harder by Robin York. I wish more authors would write friendships like this.
6. Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews. Why did it take me so long to read this author? I was missing out.
7. Cuckoo’s Calling & The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith.
8. The Year We Fell Down by Sarina Bowen
9. Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop. Ok, this was probably my favorite.
10. All of Me by Gina Sorelle. I do love a broken hero.
11. Night Broken by Patricia Briggs.
12. Why Kings Confess by C.S. Harris. I have loved following the hero and heroines relationship in this series.
13. Flowers from the Storm by Linda Kinsale. This was a ‘re read for me. But it got me out of a book slump, and I enjoyed it so.

Looking at these I’m going to say that for the most part I most enjoyed the books or series that take the time to build the relationships, no real insta love.

Kim Box Person December 31, 2014 at 7:40 PM

Awesome list!!!!

Bright Side gutted me!! Absolutely positively a top read for me for 2014!!! I read Forbidden last year OMG I will never forget that book!!!

I have both of Taylor Jenkins Reid’s books and I have to read them

Maryse December 31, 2014 at 7:49 PM

Oh YES!! I want your lists, too, so I can choose from them!

Thanks for this list, bev!! :D

Maryse December 31, 2014 at 7:50 PM

Yep… this IS a great list, isn’t it? :P

Maryse December 31, 2014 at 7:50 PM

Kim!! Get reading ‘em. They are AMAZING!!!!!! I promise!

Robyn December 31, 2014 at 7:53 PM

Forbidden, Bright Side both left me with book hangovers, such good reads!

michele December 31, 2014 at 8:02 PM

Haven’t read any but, Archer. that One just blew me away!! Have to ck out some more on your list! Happy New Year!!! :-)

bev December 31, 2014 at 8:07 PM

I can not believe how many of these I have sitting in my library unread. This is how out of control it is getting. The other half of this lists scares me, lol.

IsDonIsGood December 31, 2014 at 8:56 PM

Happy New Year from Australia

Regina December 31, 2014 at 8:57 PM

Yes Maryse. I agree with your list as i have read all of those but i would like to add Sex Lies Repeat by Alessandra Torre. Happy 2015

Rose December 31, 2014 at 11:35 PM

These just put a big smile on my face as I’m reminded of some that I’ve read and loved too; others I have and NEED to read(lol)! Thank you for sharing and Happy New Year:)

Lucylou December 31, 2014 at 11:56 PM

Thank you, Maryse, for your great year end list. I LOVE THEM and look forward every year to see what I need to bump up on my TBR list. Also, thanks to all our fellow reading addicts for adding their list too. :)

IsDonIsGood January 1, 2015 at 1:58 AM

I thought I would list some of my favourites for this year, trying not to repeat those already listed :-)

1. Lisa Kleypas – Dreaming of You. Read only because Maryse recommended and I have since enjoyed many of Lisa’s other books. I always head to Lisa Kleypas when I’m in the mood for some historical fun.

2. Finding Home – Bonnie Dee, Lauren Baker: Again only considered reading this because of Maryse. Confronting but Bonnie Dee can pull it off.

3. Striking Distance (Book 6 of I Team Series) – Pamela Clare: this book covered confronting topics very well, with great characters and a wonderful story. May be a trigger (read Author’s Notes on her website). The prior books in this series do not cover similar content and I would certainly recommend reading those as well. A great series that continues to grow in depth and she hit the ball out of the park with this one.

4. Aftermath – Cara Dee: another book I would never have thought I would enjoy without recommendations. This was my first M/M book. I typically don’t enjoy ‘flashbacks’ in books, but it was used perfectly in this book to move the story forward.

5. Blood & Roses series – Callie Hart: one of those annoying series released in parts. What is with that?! Wish they would stop. Anyway, it is a hot, steamy and fast story line. Some ups and downs throughout, but you are going to hope the ‘bad boy’ wins.

6. Rook & Ronin Series (Tragic – Manic – Panic) – JA Huss. This is a bit of a ‘sleeper series’ I think – it has been around a while but did not seem to cause much chatter. I was transported to another crazy world (in the sense that it is modelling, not paranormal at all) with these stories and I loved it.

7. Wild Side Series – (Dair, Iris) – RK Lilley: ok it appears I am addicted to reading books in series. The covers really put me off (oh yes, I know so cliche haha), but everyone kept singing the praises of RK Lilley. So glad I jumped on board – so much fun.

8. Beautiful Outlaw (Savage Outlaws MC 1) – Emily Minton: I love a good MC book, but nothing too confronting and dark. This is a strange requirement for novels about outlaw MCs, but I must not be the only one as there are many out there. This had an interesting premise and set up for an interesting possible series (oh another one…). Not as good as Joanna Wylde I would say (Reaper’s MC), but still great.

9. Shield of Winter Nalini Singh: she just keeps this Psy/Changling world moving forward and deepening in width and breadth. Love revisiting this world and seeing it all come together.

10. Ok so I really cannot go past all those on Maryse’s list. So many books that had unexpected responses from me. I just want to say I still get big ‘feels’ when I see Transcendence and Rainfall. I have re-read Play (Kylie Scott) and I hardly ever read a book again. Abbi Glines is worth a mention – her stories are always wonderful and she can be trusted to provide worthwhile reading.

Ok I had better stop there. It is fun thinking back on these books and I think I could go on and on.

Thanks for your hard work Maryse!

Jen C January 1, 2015 at 5:42 AM

Great list, quite a few are still on my TBR list.

Gosh, some of my fave reads this year – in no particular order :

1. Gypsy Brother series by Lili St. Germain. The whole series. Can’t wait for Cartel!!
2. Sweet Home by Tillie Cole (and the other books in that series!)
3. Away by B.A. Wolfe. Aaah that book stuck with me, so many emotions.
4. The Plan by Qwen Salsbury. Exactly what I needed when I read that one.
5. Must Love Otters by Eliza Gordon. Again, another romantic comedy right when I needed it. Super cute read. Totally moving to Canada.
6. RAW by Belle Aurora.
7. Breathing series by Rebecca Donovan (finally read it!).
8. Love, in English by Karina Halle. Want to go teach English overseas now.
9. Deeper by Robin York.
10. Puddle Jumping by Amber L. Johnson.
Bonus 11. Remember When series by T. Torrest. Really, really loved that series.

Cheryl January 1, 2015 at 10:56 AM

What a great list Maryse!! I have read most of them or have them on my tbr list. Have to sit down today and think about my fav’s for the year!

Happy New Year!!!

Kim January 1, 2015 at 11:30 AM

Happy New Year Maryse! Thanks for all the recommendations. Here’s my Top Five for 2014 in alphabetical order since Libra’s have a lot of trouble choosing and we also don’t like to offend. All 5 Star reads for me:
Archer’s Voice
Bad Romeo
Bright Side
Maybe Someday
Ugly Love

Pam January 1, 2015 at 11:58 AM

New Years Goal…. Read all of Maryse’ top 2014 books.

Jean January 1, 2015 at 1:18 PM

Great list! I’ve read the majority and can’t agree more with After I Do, Tristan and Danika series, Love in English, 53 Letters for My Lover and Archer’s Voice…will never forget them and have to thank you for most of these recommendations! I have to go back and see if I have any to add, but agreee with bev on Puddle Jumping and The Year We Feel Down and Jen with Away and RAW…. they were also unforgettable!

I was too chicken to read Bright Side and Forbidden, and have had Loving Mr Daniels since it came out but haven’t read it yet!

A few series that just keep getting better and better, Reed Brothers (love them all even the short novellas), Shattered Hearts, The Rocker series, and the Fighter Erotic Romance series.

Happy New Year everyone! Thank you Maryse!!!!!

Fabi January 1, 2015 at 1:18 PM

I’ve read and loved most of the ones Maryse listed, the others are now on my wish list.
In my own personal little challenge I’m going to list the books I read and loved in 2014 without looking at my Kindle, Nook, Audible, or bookshelves. So, basically, the books that stuck with me so well that I can recall them with no prompting at all. Also, since I was new to the genre last year, many of these were published in earlier years.
Beautiful Disaster
Maybe Someday
The Lux Series
Bad Things (by Krylov)
Take and Try
Surviving Raine
Unmaking Hunter Kennedy
Love, In English
…That’s 10 4.5 to 5 star reads for me right off the top of my head. There may be others I rated as highly but I’d have to go see which ones they were. There are a few that I also distinctly remember, but my rating for them was below a 4.5.
Thank you all for also sharing your favs. I find my best reads from your recommendations.

bev January 1, 2015 at 1:52 PM

Yeah, a Lisa Kleypas mention. I’m jealous of those who have got to read that book for the first time.
IsDonIsGood. I keep side eyeing Shield of Winter . I have to say I really liked Heart of Obsidian but didn’t love it ss much as others.
Jen C Must Love Otters looks super cute & love the cover.
I love reading all the lists but going to make keeping my book resolutions hard.

bev January 1, 2015 at 1:54 PM

Oh, Fabi I remember you talking about Unmaking Hunter Kennedy. And it still stuck with you? Ok another to go on my list, lol.

MichelleS January 1, 2015 at 2:48 PM

In no particular order…. here goes…
Roam series (best PNR 2014)
Covenant Series (best YA PNR)
Love in English & in Spanish (just plain hot)
The King Trilogy
Black Lies
Harder & Deeper
Bad Things (best dark read 2014)
Written in Red
Maybe Someday
Checked and Checked Again
Night broken (my most anticipated)
Bronze Horseman (I finally did it and read them all – biggest “kicking myself”
Transcendence (best book with hardly any dialogue!)
Archers Voice (best broken man book)
Forbidden (best taboo book)
Rosie Project (best witty, smart book)
Wild Side (best raunchy book)
After I Do
Lights of Peril (best MC book 2014)
Take and Try (best m/m book 2014)
The Saint and The King (best continuation of a series)
The King Trilogy
Loving Mr Daniels (best teacher student book 2014)
The Holy Trinity (best surprise what the heck was that book seres)
Puddle Jumping (best “sweet” book)
Mud Vein (best mind f*ck 2014)

And a bunch more…. but those were the top ones I can think of that I would recommend to anyone looking for a good read in one of those categories.


Michelle January 1, 2015 at 3:14 PM

I read a lot of books this year – 253! I just went through my spreadsheet and these are most of my 4.5 or 5 star reads in no particular order.

Favorite PNR/fantasy:

Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews
Murder of Crows by Anne Bishop
Stay Dead by Anne Frasier
Touched by AJ Aalto
The Undead Pool by Kim Harrison
Alaskan Fire by Sara King
Up From the Grave by Jeaniene Frost
Edgelanders by Jennifer Melzer
Lord of the Fading Lands by CL Wilson
Dust to Dust by Karina Halle

Favorite Romance (all subgenres):

Written in My Own Heart’s Blood by Diana Gabaldon
Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan
Love, In English by Karina Halle
Transcendence by Shay Savage
Forever, Interrupted by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
The Sweet Gum Tree by Katherine Allred
Ten Below Zero by Whitney Barbetti
Dreaming of You by Lisa Kleypas
Rewired by Amy Queau
Mudvein by Tarryn Fisher
What’s Left of Me by Amanda Maxlyn
Push and Shove by CL Stone
Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover
Carnage 2 by Lesley Jones
Flowers from the Storm by Laura Kinsale
Point of No Return by Tiffany Snow
Take Care, Sara by Lindy Zart
Lovely Trigger by RK Lilley
Making Faces by Amy Harmon

bev January 1, 2015 at 4:41 PM

Wow, Michelle & MichelleS the two of you did some serious reading!

I was thinking of starting a book for the challenge I want to do, but think I may just start the year off with a romance book instead.:-)

Hope every one has a Happy New Year.

Amy January 1, 2015 at 10:22 PM

I remember so many of those from the past year! And the snuggle/blankie cave/manatee support that some of them elicited among us. The Tied Man, anyone? ;) Even though I read Forbidden prior to last year, that one still makes my heart and tummy clench when I think about it all this time later. Gah! That one gutted me.

I went through all of the books I’ve read this past year and found the ones that I had noted as 4.5 to 5 stars, so here they are in no particular order…

Tristan & Danika series (of course *snort*)
Love, In English
How To Kill a Rockstar
Black Lies
Transcendence (I freaking fell in love with a caveman *rolls eyes*)
Room 212 (hush it, peanut gallery :P )
Mud Vein (NEVER have I loved-hated-loved a book so much)
Experiment in Terror series (4.5 to 5 stars for the last few at least ;) )
Drowning Instinct (a big thank you to Maryse for reigniting my interest in that one!)
Ugly Love
Forever, Interrupted
Beautiful Broken Rules (had that perfect “college angst feel”)
Bright Side *sob*
Maybe Someday
The Artists trilogy
After I Do
Lover Awakened (oh, Z *sigh*)
Therapy (’cause of all the anger and freak-outs it caused)

Uh… *scrolls back up to Maryse’s list* Yeah, I really wasn’t trying to copy your list. Honest. Even though it looks like it. At least a little bit. Or something like that. So, um, yeah… *ahem* Great list, Maryse!!! :D

MichelleS January 1, 2015 at 11:12 PM

OMG. I can’t believe I forgot about How to Kill a Rockstar, Written in my Own Heart’s Blood and After I Do….. sheesh…. what was I thinking? Those were all 5 star reads for me. It was a pretty good year, I’d say.

I am going to try to make my own “diversity” list – of course a PNR here and there, a YA PNR here and there, more historical romances (which I used to love), and maybe a few mystery romances?

Also, this is the first year in as long as I can remember that I hardly re-read anything. I was in a tizzy looking for the next good 5 star read and didn’t go back and enjoy my old faves. Anyone else have this happen to them? It’s like I didn’t make time!!!

Tessa January 1, 2015 at 11:46 PM

I was so out of it, and posted this in the wrong post! I went back and really tried to figure what was best of what I read this year. These are the ones that just hit me.

Fallen Fourth Down by Tijan
Bright Side by Kim Holden – On this one, I still get sad when I think of it. Also, I never realized until this book how much I say “dude”.
Kane Chronicles by Stylo Fantôme – This kept me on my toes all the way until the end. I seriously loved it, and I could not put it down.
Indebted series by Pepper Winters – Dark and just weird, which I like.
Escaping Destiny by Amelia Hutchins
Endless Knight by Kresley Cole – Probably the oddest one in here, but I fell in love with Death. He’s top five BBF
The Dark Elements Series by Jennifer Armentrout
Lovely Trigger by RK Lilley
Holy Trinity Series By Madeleine Sheehan
Beware by Shanora Williams (Anyone who read this, she is releasing a book two in 2015, yeah!)
Magic Breaks by Ilona Andrews
Reignite and Extinguish by J.M. Darhower
Cassie Palmer series by Karen Chance
Elite by Rachel Van Dyken – Read it three times already this year. *grins*
Penryn & the End of Days series by Susan Ee

bev January 1, 2015 at 11:52 PM

MichelleS, yes the last couple years I have not done as much re reading as I usually do. Even the re reading of certain little parts like an ending or good dialogue.
There are 3 books, Heart of the West, The Outsider, & The Passions of Emma by Penelope Williamson, that I am for sure going to finally re read. I first read them in this order one after the other from my library and loved them. Finally going to see If I still feel the same. Each of them has a scene or so that I can still remember so clearly many yrs later.

Fabi January 2, 2015 at 1:16 AM

I’ve added so many to my wish list from your favorites! Thank you so much for your lists.

I can NOT believe I left Unwind off my list. My only excuse is that I read that series very early in the year. But, YEAH, freaking crazy, mind warping books I will never forget.

Maryse January 2, 2015 at 11:35 AM

YAY!! I’m so glad you guys are enjoying my list. I love it. It’s a nice solid “awesome read for sure” list. Tried and true! :D

Maryse January 2, 2015 at 11:47 AM

LOL Amy!!!! I was just thinking our list was VERY similar. AND I LOVE IT!!! Just goes to show how close our taste in books is.

Cheryl January 2, 2015 at 1:54 PM

I’m not sure how, but if I added them up correctly I read 310 books this year! Crazy addiction!! I’m not sure if you guys have some kind of spread sheet for keeping record of 4-5 stars, think I’ll do that this year, but these are one’s when I went thru my list I remembered loving!
How does everyone keep track of their favs?

My top reads in no particular order are: (If you don’t guess from reading my list, I love rock star and sports stories) ;)
The Storm Series
The Opportunist, Dirty Red, Thief *angst with a capital A*
The Game Series
Archer’s Voice *sigh*
Sweet Home Series
Fallen Too Far series *Rush, need I say more*
The Driven Series *Colton*
Tristan and Danika *my heart*
Mud Vein * love/hate/weirdest story*
Infinity Series
Love, In English, Experiment in Terror, The Pact, Artist’s Trilogy *basically every book Karina Halle writes*
Collide/Pulse *love the love triangle*
The Complete Groupie Trilogy *major angst rock star story*
That Boy/ That Wedding *funny read*
After I Do *”I’ve met someone”*
The Fae Chronicles *Is the next book ever being released?*
Ugly Love
Fever Series
Written In My Own Heart’s Blood *met Diana Gabaldon* :)

Happy New Year!!

Cheryl January 2, 2015 at 2:37 PM

My numbers were switched- should be 301 books read, not 310.

My name’s Cheryl and I’m a reading addict!!!! ;)

Fabi January 2, 2015 at 3:01 PM

Too funny Cheryl! Yup, that’s a lot of books in one year!

Carla January 2, 2015 at 3:32 PM

Good choices, Maryse. And I agree with lots of it.
My favorites>
On the record – K.A. Linde
Maybe Someday – Colleen Hoover
Mud Vein – Tarryn Fisher
Unravel – Calia Read
King of me – Mimi Jean
Tauting Destiny – Amelia Hutchins
The Dark Prince – S.L. Jennings
Surviving Raine – Shay Savage

Amy January 2, 2015 at 6:22 PM

Yep, having similar tastes is *very* helpful, especially when trying to find something to get out of a book slump! I keep seeing the same books repeated on different lists here which shows how alike our great minds think *giggle* and all I can say is…I love this place and the ladies in it!!!! :D

*sputters and coughs* Wow, 301 Cheryl?!?!? Reading tiara and martini to you!!

Cheryl January 2, 2015 at 8:56 PM

Yeh Amy pretty embarassing. Didn’t realize how many books until I counted them. Guess having the flu a couple times and just laying around reading helped and I listen to books when I run too.

Biate January 4, 2015 at 7:48 AM

Play – This series is high on my list. I just Love those boys. It just feels like ages before the next one is released. Can’t really say which one of the 3 was my favorite though.

Loving Mr Daniels – I really liked it. It made me smile and it made me cry (especially when Ryan died and right at the end – those letters…:love: ) and it had HEA that just warmed my heart and made it an absolute winner!:D

Mud Vein – OH MY WORD!! I love this book. I hate this book. But I couldn’t put it down and when I got to the last age I kept turning hoping there was more and somehow miracles do happen and she could have a happily ever after with Isaac.

These are a few other ones that stuck with me…Fae Chronicles, Prisoner, Make/Break Me series, Stripped (Jasinda Wilder), Held, Raw, Here be Sexist Vampire and off course the BDB series (And yes I only read this series for the very first time in 2014).

Loving all your lists and getting some new ideas to add to my TBR pile.


Julie January 6, 2015 at 2:28 PM

I can’t wait for your year-end best books post! I read 70 books in 2014, many based on your recommendations which never steer me wrong. Here are my five stars reads in no particular order –

-The Story of Us (Carnage #2) – first book tore my heart out & second book repaired it – one of those stories I’ll remember for a long time
-Ugly Love – prob my fav standalone of the year
-Moore than Forever (Needing More series)-great second chance love story
-Complete Me (Stark Trilogy) best 50-ish feel that I read this year
-Frenched – sexy & funny
-Monster in HIs Eyes – so intense & a bit dark and I loved it
-Play (Stage Dive #2) – most unexpected – I would have never guessed that Mal would be my fav character of the year – I never reread but think I could reread this for Mal alone!
-Lovely Trigger (Tristan & Danika #3) – my fav of this author’s books which says a lot b/c they are all good – such a great series!
-Crashed (Drive #3) – sexy race car drive – I will always “race you”!

Horonable Mentions:
-Where She Went – I enjoyed how much more grown up they were in this book and enjoyed it more than the first but my teenager totally disagrees – lol!
-Black Lies – wow is all I can say – loved the twisty turns and would like to read parts of this again from a different perspective
-Saviour/Resolution – same author as Carnage – I love her stories b/c they make me feel so much

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