It’s R’s turn, and she’s created a fun “category” list for us that I’m totally getting a kick out of. I LOVE THIS! Plus, there are SO MANY new-to-me books on here, and R. and I have very similar tastes in our authors and love stories.
So many new ones just made my TBR list. Eeeeeeeeep!! How did I miss these??? Well, as long as we have ’em now.
Here are some funny “R. Renee” highlights for 2017!
Some of her favorite words:
“I love the word “whilst” and borrow it often! That and boot. My car doesn’t have a trunk, it has a boot.”
She’s finalizing a book… and… getting distracted. 😉 Gah this made me giggle:
“FWP: I have a super huge deadline that I’m already missing and I just spent 30 minutes stalking pictures of Diego Boneta. #lackofsleep”
She loves cooking like I do, and went crazy for one of my favorite Pot Roast recipes (Mississippi Pot Road – oh how I am craving that again!!)
“Maryseeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee that roast just changed my life, my marriage, and my world view.”
And also… she has a marinade for us: “My go-to marinade for chicken breasts uses ranch dressing packets. Two packets, 4 TBS oil, 2 TBS red wine vinegar for 4 breasts. Yumm and easy.” <— I AM SO TRYING THIS!!!!!
She’s a HUGE football fan. I can attest to this first hand, when I see her have her tantrums on Facebook, flipping tables and such (meme-wise). 😉 LOL!!
“I got up at the crack of dawn to watch the Browns game on the patio and it was FREEZING! We had to start a fire. Now it’s in the 70s and I’m burning up!”
P.S. Wanna know more about R. Renee? Check out her TOP 2016 post (with quite the intro into who she is!!)
“Below is my 2017 “faves.” I did something different last year for my newsletter and I thought it would be fun for the blog instead of the usual top ten. It’s my 2017 Graduating Class.”
Here are my picks for the Graduating Class of 2017!
BEST ALL AROUND: Forever Right Now by Emma Scott. I love everything about this book from the author to the cover to the single dad trope. I read it twice, and both times, I was reduced to a sobbing, blubbering mess.
It’s a beautiful story that pulled at my heartstrings—more than any other Emma Scott book. Sweet, swoony, angsty, and impossible to put down. These two—make that three—pulled me through the ringer and left me smiling on the other side.
MOST UNIQUE: Ghosted by J.M. Darhower. CLEVER. Second person flashbacks? I didn’t think I was going to like those, but they quickly became one of my favorite things about the book. My other favorite thing? Maddie, but more on her in a minute.
UNSUNG HERO: The Pebble Jar by H.A. Robinson. This one sat in my TBR forever, and I picked it up out of the blue and began flipping through it. I didn’t put it down until I was done, and then I cried buckets of tears and sent scathing* emails to the author. This book is not getting the attention it deserves.
BIGGEST HEARTBREAKER: Mists of The Serengeti by Leylah Attar. This book hurt me physically. Good lord, it hurts right now just thinking about it. One of the most painfully beautiful books I’ve ever read. I kept having to put it down because I couldn’t read and cry at the same time. And I’m not talking normal tears. Nope. These were big, fat, gut-wrenching sobs that rattled my bones.
BEST DRESSED: Sweetest Heartbreak (Sweetness Book 1) by Heather Bentley. LOVE. THIS. COVER. And it’s even more striking in person. It totally depicts the feel of the book for me, which BTW, is a solid five stars.
CLASS CLOWN: Free Hostage by S. Ann Cole. Cole is a natural when it comes to compelling, heartwarming, laugh-out-loud love stories that keep you on the edge of your seat. And her heroines have heart. On the rare occasion I wasn’t laughing with Timber, I was crying for her.
BIGGEST FLIRT: Desiring Lacey: Volume 1 (Fantasies Unmasked) by Erica Lynn. Erica is known to bring the steam, and DL doesn’t disappoint. It’s got a little Eyes Wide Shut thing happening that I love, which continues throughout the series. I don’t typically get into erotic romance because the romance is usually lacking. Not the case here. Erica’s books are the best of both worlds.
MOST LIKELY TO WIN AN OSCAR: The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo: A Novel by Taylor Jenkins Reid. I’m slightly obsessed with TJR. I wait all year for her books to come out like kids wait for Santa. I stay up late on release night and read until dawn. I drop everything else. Everything. But not this time. I knew this wasn’t going to be her usual gut-wrenchy romance, so I decided to skip it. I made it three long months before I caved and read it simply for the writing.
Yes, I paid $12 to read a book I didn’t think I’d like. That’s how much I love her writing. I didn’t even care what the story was about at that point. I just needed a fix. To my surprise, I loved it. And it WOULD make a killer movie. That being said, I miss her, and I hope she goes back to her soul-crushing roots.
CUTEST COUPLE: Stef and Jav from A Charm of Finches (Venery Book 2) by Suanne Laqueur. I didn’t *love* Jav in An Exaltation of Larks. I was #teamalex and #teamval all the way. But I fell hard for Stef in Finches, and he brings out the best in Jav. These two are swoony, romantic goodness. I’m reading them right now in Tales from Cushman Row and can’t get enough.
BEST SIDEKICK: Maddie from Ghosted by J.M. Darhower. OMG this kid STOLE this book and my heart. Do you remember that scene in Hope Floats where the little girl chases her dad’s car down the road? That’s who Maddie reminds me of. She made me LOL and CRY. Get that girl the breads and the chickens! Gah! I can’t even. *dies*
MOST LIKELY TO SUCCEED: Goodnight, Nic by Marley Jacobs. I’m always looking for first person, present tense books, and when I found out this one was by a debut author, I jumped on it.
Jacobs has a unique voice and her sense of humor is on par with mine—dry and maybe just a little inappropriate. I laughed and cried simultaneously. I can’t wait to see what she does next.
BIGGEST SURPRISE: The Dark of the Moon by E.S. Bell. What the ever-loving heck? I don’t do fantasy, especially hardcore Sword and Sorcery Fantasy (I don’t even know what that is). But Bell happens to be a second pen name for my favorite romance writer and that makes it a must read. As with Seven Husbands, I expected to love the writing, but I didn’t expect to love the book.
To be honest, I didn’t even expect to like it. But by the halfway mark, I was hooked. I got so swept up in Lunos, I didn’t want to leave. I’d be there right now if said author would quit wasting time doing stupid stuff like sleeping/eating/spending time with her family, and give me book two. DOTM gave me one of the biggest book hangovers I’ve had in years. YEARS.
Six stars and one of my top ten faves of all time.