Reader Favorites – Cheryl’s Top Favorite Books List:

by Maryse on August 8, 2015 · 41 comments

in Book Recommendations

It’s Saturday and you know what that means! It’s time for the latest Reader Favorite’s List, and Cheryl is up next! Looking over her list, I see a lot of my own favorites, but there are plenty of “new-to-mes” on here, too! YAY ME!! YAY US!!!

Cheryl’s been with us since 2012!!! And she’s got 60 pages worth of comments from her alone, on the blog! LOL!!! So you know she’s been one-of-us (and a little crazy, too!) for ages now. Let’s get to know her, shall we? A little blast from her comment past… :P

  • She’s NOT a cliffhanger fan. LOL!! “A CH, well that decides it for me. Nope, not going to read it until it is complete…
  • She’s a team-player/dark-read chicken! Buddy-reading is favored. LOL! “…if you want to hold my hand, *cough* I mean buddy read Captive In the Dark I’m in…
  • She loves her flowers… fermented. *snort* ““Hibiscus vodka”…OMG going to liquor store tomorrow…that will be my new favorite summer drink!!!
  • She’s okay with somewhat open-ended endings: “I will say I think maybe for me it was good that not all my questions were answered so that in my mind I could think something ended a way that I liked. ;)
  • She loves a good book-cry and and angsty romance! “Bring on the angsty list!!  ;)
  • She loves sports themed romance books! “I just can’t resist a sports theme story.
  • Here’s a little about “how” she reads: “When I’m reading I picture the H as described, but it’s a vague picture, if that makes sense. Hair color, build and good looking, but not an exact picture. I don’t picture myself as the h, but if it’s a good book I feel what’s she’s feeling.
  • She’s supportive! “WOW, this is great!! Bookmarked this page!! Thanks Maryse!” <— awwwww. :D <3
  • She’s a child of the 80′s! “Omg, I remember all that from the 80′s. Big earrings, and even bigger hair…thanks to a lot of aqua net. How did I not know that about Adidas!! Guess I wasn’t one of the cool kids!!! ;)
And now she’s sent us her TOP 18 (plus some, ’cause you know there are always extras!!)

When deciding on my favorites list, I choose books that stuck with me either because I can remember the characters, the events that happened, the overall “feel” that the book evoked in me, or were chosen after looking at the books I’ve read list and then recalling what I loved about the book.  I can’t say Fifty Shades is on my favorites list, but it did get me started reading again, so it deserves an honorable mention.  Also, I used to read a lot of Twilight Fan-fiction (hey it’s free) so I have to give a shout-out (aka Amy-style cheat) to my favorite FF stories that were published.  Beautiful BastardWallbangerPUCKED and The Plan.

Looking at my list it’s easy to see that I am a sucker for a good rock-star or sports-theme story.

  1. Thoughtless by S.C. Stephens- Kellan Kyle, need I say more.
  2. Infinity Series Series by Layne Harper – favorite sports theme series.
  3. Outlander - Jamie is one of my favorite book boyfriends and Diana Gabaldon is the only author I have met in person. *bonus*
  4. The Fae Chronicles by Amelia Hutchins.  Was a tie between this one and The Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning for favorite PNR series.  Honestly I never would have read either of these, since I’m not a big PNR reader, if Maryse and my fellow readers had not recommended them.
  5. The Mighty Storm by Samantha Towle. Favorite bad-boy rockstar.
  6. The Groupie Trilogy by Ginger Voight.  ANGSTY rock-star story. No lie my stomach was in knots the entire trilogy.
  7. The Sweet Gum Tree by Katherine Allred- sweet angst, second chance love story.
  8. The Opportunist/Love Me With Lies Series by Tarryn Fisher.  Kill me with Angst!! HATED Leah. Ripped my heart out.
  9. Mud Vein by Tarryn Fisher.  I think I have PTSD from this book, I still remember how much of a mind-f*ck this book did to me.
  10. Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan. My sweet Archer- so beautifully broken.
  11. Black Lies by Alessandra Torre. What, what, wtf?!!
  12. The Year We Fell Down by Sarina Bowen. Loved reading a positive story about less than perfect characters, since my daughter has a physical disability.
  13. Tristan & Danika Series by R. K. Lilley.  Chewed up my heart and twisted my gut.
  14. The Driven Series by K. Bromberg.  Wanted to simultaneously hug and crotch punch Colton.
  15. That Boy Series by Jillian Dodd. Funniest, best books to listen to.
  16. After I Do by Taylor Jenkins Reid. Still gets me every time I think of the line, “I’ve met someone.”
  17. Bright Side by Kim Holden.  I’m shocking myself by listing this book, because I hated it- probably my worst ugly cry, BUT it was so good.
  18. Experiment in Terror Series/The Artists Trilogy/Love, in English by Karina Halle. Just love this author.

Well, there you have it.  Could also add The Off-Campus Series by Elle Kennedy and Beat And Throb by Vi Keeland are my newest favorites.  I’m looking forward to more by these authors.
*group hug*


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{ 41 comments… read them below or add one }

Tessa August 8, 2015 at 7:30 PM

Yeah, Cheryl’s books and a fun list. I love the sneaky cheating. Well done. I have to hide because, um, I haven’t read most of those. I just bought Sweet Gum Tree though, since it was 99 cents. The ones I have, though, I adore. I’ve read 1,3,4,13,14,and 17. I could have sworn I had and read Mighty Storm, but I can’t find it anywhere. :/

Jean August 8, 2015 at 7:39 PM

Cheryl, I love your list! We have a lot of book love in common! I loved The Mighty Storm and no one ever talks about it! I haven’t read 2, 6, 14, 15, 17 and 18 (EIT series). Bright Side scares me. I’ve had the first two books of the Driven series, the entire EIT series, and That Boy series downloaded forever.

Jean August 8, 2015 at 7:41 PM

Cheryl, I tried to friend you on GR but you were marked private. Find me through Ela or Fabi or Amy, etc.

Fabi August 8, 2015 at 8:04 PM

yeeeaaa, it’s Cheryl’s list. I’ve read a few. A few I’m scared of reading. Now, to pick out which ones I’m going to add to my Read These Favorite Readers list…

Fabi August 8, 2015 at 8:05 PM

Definitely adding Beat and Throb. I already had those on my tbr. I think I’ll add That Boy too since it seems one of the few that won’t shatter me reading it.

bev August 8, 2015 at 8:12 PM

I have the book or at least the first in the series for 1,2,4,6,8,10,13,14,15,lol. I seriously need to start reading from my tbr.
The Mighty Storm would usually be a no for me, but it worked for me. Well, except for one scene, the club scene if I remember correctly.
I wonder if I re read it if I’d still like it as much.

Cheryl August 8, 2015 at 8:33 PM

Awww thanks Tessa!! I was feeling pretty cheeky with my cheating. Definitely recommend the Mighty Storm series. Samantha Towle is one of my favorite writers and I would also recommend her newest books Revved and Revived.

Jean you would The Driven series, Colton is equal parts smexy and frustrating. EIT- has a slow, slow burn relationship between Perry and Dex and counts as a pnr in my book!! I loved That Boy series more so because I listened to it. So funny!! Bright Side still scares me. ;) I just friended you on GR. Yeh!!

Grey August 8, 2015 at 8:37 PM

I’ve read 4,9,11 and 14, plus your two honorable mentions down there at the end.

Love your list Cheryl, maybe I will jump in with Thoughtless… I thought I’d read it before…but maybe not…

Thank you for sharing, I love this game!

Linda August 8, 2015 at 8:58 PM

Cheryl love your list!!! I’ve read quite a few and others on my tbr list to read!! You’ve reinforced me to focus on the Infinity series, Black Lies and Sweet Gum Tree. Loved loved loved 1,4,5,10,13,14 and 15. Grey trust me if you had read Thoughtless you would remember it!! Kellan Kyle is unforgettable!! Thank you Cheryl!! And Maryse I don’t thank you enough for your hard work, time and devotion to this wonderful blog!! Xoxo

Cheryl August 8, 2015 at 9:04 PM

Fabi, Beat and Throb are not high angst and nothing scary in them! I think you would really like That Boy and That Wedding and That Baby- especially if you listen to them. I remember you listen to books, I think driving to work or when you’re traveling for work?!

Bev, hmmm, I think I know which club scene you’re talking about. Overrall Jake and Tru’s story worked for me, but it sure wasn’t pretty at times. ;)

Cheryl August 8, 2015 at 9:09 PM

Maryse- really 60 pages!!! Happy to be part of the crazy here. :)

Grey, stop whatever you’re reading now and start Thoughtless, you’ll thank me in the morning when you’ve been up all night reading it. Like Linda said, if you had read Thoughtless you would remember it!!

Maryse August 8, 2015 at 9:11 PM

<3 to you Linda. It's my pleasure and also MY FUN!!! :D

Maryse August 8, 2015 at 9:12 PM

And I still can’t believe there are some amongst us that haven’t read THOUGHTLESS!!!???

*gasp* :D

Cheryl August 8, 2015 at 9:15 PM

Linda, uh-oh you mentioned Sweet Gum Tree, now some around here will be throwing their SGT marked peanuts at you. ;)

Thanks for your kind words- I love this blog, Maryse and all you guys!! *big hugs*

Anne August 8, 2015 at 9:29 PM

Yaay Cheryl’s list! Love her so much! Amazing list!

Oh The Driven series is right up my alley! Oh and SGT one of my faves of all time.

MichelleS August 8, 2015 at 9:59 PM

Cheryl!!! CHERYL!!!! I have read 14 of your 18 and LOVED them. This makes us soul mates or something, right??? right???

So which lovelies did I miss? 2 – 6 – 15 – 17 …. and considering how amazingly similar our tastes are, I am thinking I need to add these pronto! woo-hoo for these Saturday favorites lists!!!!

Cheryl August 8, 2015 at 10:21 PM

Anne, that’s so sweet. *blushing* Read Driven you’ll love/hate Colton!!

MichelleS my book soul mate!!! Wow, only 4 you haven’t read- think you’ll like them too, although I think I succumbed to peer pressure when I read #17-such an ugly cry book for me. So, soulmate girl- can you help me find a book now? I’ve wasted all day trying to find one. :)

Kim Box Person August 8, 2015 at 10:26 PM

YAY!!!! Love seeing the Groupie Trilogy on Cheryl’s list! OMG I was so mad at V at times angsty- YES!!! I go crazy for angst and tearjerkers but I’m a huge fan of cliffhangers! I absolutely feed off getting to the end and screaming WTH! It’s almost like a High for me

Maryse August 8, 2015 at 10:29 PM

Kim… I’m the same way!!! :P

MichelleS August 8, 2015 at 10:39 PM

Cheryl – I was going to ask you the same thing! Find me a book. I just finished Paper Swans. I am in the mood for MC or Rocker, I think. Beat and Throb are up there on your “extras” list…. hmmm….. and for you I’d recommend Making Faces (oldie but goodie that looks like it would be right up your alley).

MichelleS August 8, 2015 at 10:42 PM

… or the Mason List….

Amy August 8, 2015 at 11:00 PM

Aw Cheryl…*big hugs* We have such similar tastes so it’s always fun chatting with you! Anyone who loves angst and ugly cries is after my own heart. :D Luffs ya girl.

The only ones from your list I haven’t read are 2, 3, 5, 6, 12, and 14…but I actually have all of them sitting on my iPad! Yay!

Amy August 8, 2015 at 11:01 PM

Ohhhh, The Mason List…now THAT one is great. ;)

Tessa August 8, 2015 at 11:02 PM

MichelleS, you didn’t read Bright Side? Not pushing it because you want something specific, but for some reason I thought you did.

Cheryl, Mighty Storm is a KU, which I guess I never read. I got it to read after a few others. :) I love rockstars, after all.

MichelleS August 8, 2015 at 11:20 PM

Nope, never read Bright Side. I thought I heard rumors that it may be TOO tragic, if you know what mean, and I just can’t go there. Reconsider?? How bad is it?

Cheryl August 8, 2015 at 11:34 PM

MIchelleS, yes! We really are book soulmates- I’ve read Making Faces and The Mason List too. I don’t know what I’m in the mood for-rock star sounds good though.

Amy the queen of angst and you haven’t read The Groupie Trilogy- that’s just not right!!! And Driven, you will love Colton and want to take a turn crotch punching him with me!! Luff back at ya!

Tessa August 9, 2015 at 12:16 AM

How bad? It has a lot of five star reviews because it really touches the heart, but honestly, I had tears falling on my tablet. I’d read half a page, wipe the screen, read the other half, wipe, go get tissue… It was the ugliest cry. I HATE to ugly cry. HATE those books. I loved Bright Side. So… Yeah. I can’t say go read it, but the emotion and heart are insane. AND! Gus is out, and though it wasn’t as good, it heals. I don’t cry thinking of Bright Side anymore.

Not sure if that’s a recommendation or RUN! RUN NOW!

Irene Acton August 9, 2015 at 2:24 AM

Love your book choices Cheryl, The Opportunist had me crying buckets. I see you have lots of similar favourites that I loved. I’m a Brit by the way and I’m on Goodreads. Not long finished Nine Minutes and loved it.

Julie O August 9, 2015 at 4:01 AM

Cheryl…loved your list. I too loved the Infinity Series. Really missed it after reading all 4books. I never hear anyone talking about it either. I like sports and jocks and will send you a list of my favorite sports stories.

Cheryl August 9, 2015 at 8:25 AM

I know Julie O, you’re the first to comment that has read the Infinity series – it was so good!!! *Love Colin + Charlie*

Would love your list of fav sports stories!!!! Thanks!! :)

Michelle August 9, 2015 at 2:57 PM

Awesome list that has a lot of my favorites too Cheryl! Haven’t read 2, 5, 6, 12, 16, 17. The Infinity series is KU so what am I waiting for?! After I Do has been in my top 5 TBR for wayyyy too long considering Forever Interrupted was 5* for me. Bright Side I have too but it scares me! If any of the other holdouts want to do a BR, I would attempt it. Also I agree the Driven series is fantastic and Colton is the pinnacle of the love to hate type of guy!

MichelleS August 9, 2015 at 4:20 PM

*scratches head* what is KU?

Tessa August 9, 2015 at 4:58 PM

Sorry! Kindle Unlimited.

Cheryl August 9, 2015 at 8:33 PM

Thanks Irene. I agree, The Opportunist was one of those books that hits you in the gut and heart, hard!! I’m on GR too. In my house we love all things BBC: Dr. Who, Orphan Black, The Musketeers, Sherlock…In fact, my son wants either a London trip or Hawaii trip for graduation… he can dream! :)

Michelle, I haven’t gotten the courage up to read Forever Interrupted yet, it’s on my tbr. Bright Side is a beautifully written gut-wrenching ugly cry of a story!! Grab a buddy to read it with you and borrow Amy’s Manny!! ;)

bev August 9, 2015 at 9:21 PM

Cheryl, I’ve heard Orphan Black is good. I used to love Graham Norton show on the BBC. Used to watch old britcoms like As time goes by and Keeping Up Appearances on PBS. I was only able to watch the first episode of the new Poldark and so can’t wait for it to come out on dvd. Mentioned it before but love,
He was so good in the Vicar of Dibley, too.
Lol, sorry get sorta excited by British tv I guess.
Benedict’s Sherlock. *sigh*

Amy August 9, 2015 at 9:25 PM

British movies!!! Trainspotting is a dark comedy but is so crazy and kooky and messed up…someone has to watch it and tell me what you think. I love it ’cause it still makes me laugh and cringe at the same time.

Oh! And 28 Days Later and 28 Weeks Later…zombies!!! :D

Cheryl August 9, 2015 at 11:19 PM

Bev, Orphan Black is great!! Tatiana Maslany the lead actress is brilliant. It keeps you thinking and guessing where things are going and it can be gritty, violent, funny and smexy.. I remember watching the first episode and turning to my husband and saying this is BBC?? as the 2 actors proceeded to rip each other’s clothes off and have sex on the kitchen counter. Great show that doesn’t get the attention it deserves!

Trainspotting, that’s the one about heroin addicts?

Amy August 9, 2015 at 11:40 PM

Yes, have you seen it??

OMG, this scene…

Cheryl August 10, 2015 at 10:26 PM

No, I haven’t seen it. OMG, what the hell was that Amy?

Amy August 10, 2015 at 10:54 PM

*snicker-snort* He had an accident in bed (obviously not pee!) while staying at the girl’s house…and she was all ticked at him because he passed out before she could get lucky. :P

There are so many parts in that movie that make you cringe and laugh at the same time! But like I said, it’s a dark comedy so there is some messed up stuff too…

Cheryl August 11, 2015 at 6:40 PM

I’m intrigued- going to watch it!! ;)

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