HO! HO! HO! And Merry Christmas!! (To those that celebrate) And here is to another year of participation in the TOP 10 of 2017. This has been a tradition that I am so excited to continue and I cannot wait to share my list of favorite reads (YA and Romance) for the past year. I have it admit it was a bit rough for me at the beginning of the year and I was overwhelmed with some pretty intense reads that seemed to take the wind out of my sails and it left me in a bit of a rut. Yet, I was able to pull myself out of it by returning to the world of romance and I will be forever grateful for this change because it introduced me to some of the most amazing authors and books that I have had the pleasure of reading this year.
Please remember that this TOP 10 of 2017 doesn’t have to be a book that is released in 2017, just a book you’ve read in 2017. So, with that being said, you will note that some of the books on my list’s. Yes, I have lists, one for my love of YA and the other for my love of adult romance include some novels that were not released this year.
TOP 10 of 2017
BEARD IN MIND
I cannot tell you how much this amazing novel touched me. I am the biggest fangirl of this series and with each book I claimed that that particular novel was my favorite. Yet, BEARD IN MIND totally claimed my heart and all the tears that were shed over reading this book I didn’t mind releasing.
“You’ve seen me at my worst and you love me anyway. Give me the same chance. Show me who you are, and trust me to stay even if there are dark parts. But also, trust me to stay because of them.”
― Penny Reid, Beard in Mind
Dear me, but Cletus Winston holds a special place in my heart. Fiercely loyal, yet always diabolical. You never want to be on his bad side but if your fortunate to gain his love you are one lucky human. To watch him fall for his “one and only” was not only comical but it was also romantic to ever lovin’ bits. BEARD SCIENCE will completely steal your heart and make you crave banana cake and sausage like nothing else.
“That’s right. You seize that woman, Cletus. You make her yours. And then after,” still grinning, Duane dropped his hand on my shoulder and gave me a little shake, “you give that woman your sausage.”
― Penny Reid, Beard Science
BEAUTY AND THE MUSTACHE
My ever romantic heart at up BEAUTY AND THE MOUSTACHE like it was oxygen and I needed all the air. This book started me down a romantic rollercoaster that I am so happy to have ridden and only wish that all my friends could enjoy this series as much as I do. The Romance between these two characters is off the charts and the fact that it surrounds this family that has been estranged and broken makes it so much more than just a phenomenal rom-com read. I cannot praise this series enough and once you give it a try you will understand my obsession with this series and it’s author.
“In that moment, I finally figured out what kind of handsome he was. He was fiction-handsome. Romance novel handsome; but not the clean-cut (billionaire) alpha male or even the tattooed (billionaire) bad boy archetype. He was the Scottish highlander, Viking conqueror, bodice-ripper historical romance kind of handsome; an unshaven, lion wrestling, mountain man recluse, toss you over his shoulder and plunder your goodies kind of handsome. He was both scary and swoony. I wanted to braid his beard. I also wanted to run away.”
― Penny Reid, Beauty and the Mustache
OMG!!! I am so kicking myself for not reading this series earlier but If I had I would not have had the pleasure of being able to read all these novels back to back and thus making my Summer one of the best reading ones ever. Thus the “SUMMER OF SMUT” was born and these lovely ladies made it the best, especially with BEAUTIFUL PLAYER. Will and Hannah was my favorite of this series and believe me I had many favorites but this particular read was oh so dreamy and sexy that I just didn’t want it to end.
“That’s why I had a reduction when I was twenty-one,” which is when his expression morphed into one of horror.
You’d have thought I told him I made an amazing stew from tiny babies and puppy tongues.
“Why on earth would you do that? That’s like God giving you a beautiful gift and you kicking him in the nuts.”
I laughed. “God? I thought you were agnostic, Professor.”
“I am. But if I could motorboat perfect tits like yours I might be able to find Jesus.”
I felt my blush warm my cheeks. “Because Jesus totally lives in my cleavage?”
“Not anymore he doesn’t. Your boobs are now too small for him to be comfortable in there.” He shook his head, and I couldn’t stop laughing. “So selfish, Ziggs,”
― Christina Lauren, Beautiful Player
DIRTY ROWDY THING
Hello!! Finn! Goodness can Chistina Lauren create word magic and it is proven with DIRTY ROWDY THING. This novel was the perfect mix of wicked sexy and romantic comedic swoon. Just full of heart stopping moments that had me on the edge of my seat the entire time I was reading it. I adored the BEAUTIFUL series but must say that this WILD SEASONS series was my favorite and this book was the cherry on top.
“The stars could fall, the ocean could take over the land, and I wouldn’t even realize it until long after Finn slows his hips and runs his hand up my leg and along my side, until he reaches my jaw, cupping it and telling me he’s never wanted anything the way he wants me.”
― Christina Lauren, Dirty Rowdy Thing
Again, another series that I was late to reading about but so happy to have had the chance to read them all in quick succession. Although each book had me in stitches, PUCKED UP won a special place in my heart because Buck was completely clueless and he had so many horrible situations happen to him and he still kept going. That spider scene was the best and it made me an instant fan of Helene Hunting and all her fantastic novels. If anyone is looking for wicked hot sexy with a side of comedic relief than you need not look any further than this series.
“Being the provider of the first big “O” gives me some power. It elevates my status. I’m the White Knight in the land of Orgasmia, wielding my magical sword of awesome.”
― Helena Hunting, Pucked Up
For anyone that knows me, knows that I am a sucker for royalty and this series completely made my Summer. I could not get enough of this series and ROYALLY ENDOWED made me the happiest human. Emma Chase created a story that was so romantic and I adored how she introduced their history and blended into this tale of romantic longing with touches of smexy that is truly toe curling. I highly recommend this read for anyone that loves a bit of royalty and romance.
“I burn for you, sweet girl. I dream of you, even when I’m awake.”
― Emma Chase, Royally Endowed
I have been a fan of J.R. Ward for almost ten years and I have been with the BDB ever since. There have been times that I have not been entirely pleased with some of the books in this series but hot damn did she ever return to what I loved most about her writing with THE CHOSEN. Such romantic tension and hot vampire warriors that will do anything to love their females. Ahhhhh….so much to love about this book that if you are a fan of this series then you know exactly what I am talking about. The wait for this particular couple was sooooo worth every word. This is the only series that I have stuck with throughout the years and that says something. If you haven’t read this series then you are missing out on some of the best series out there and although some may want to hurl it across the room stick with it and you will not be disappointed.
“With all of my black and withered heart, I love you, my female.”
― J.R. Ward, The Chosen
HOLY Guacamole! Can Helena Hunting write a sexy romantic comedy. This book was all kinds of sexy and I have a new book boyfriend with sexy LEXY. Goodness the Area 51 scene is enough to light up the sexy with it’s hotness.
“I kiss her until the alarm goes off and our time runs out.”
― Helena Hunting, Hooking Up
THE LEARNING HOURS: HOW TO DATE A DOUCHEBAG
Here is another read that totally surprised me with it’s awesomeness. HOW TO DATE A DOUCHEBAG: The Learning Hours by Sara Ney is so wonderful. This book is the perfect toe curling romance that will make you swoon. These characters are so great together and their moments together still stick with me and that is why it made my list of favorites this year.
“Je ne te veux pas dans l’ autre chambre,” I repeat. “Restez avec moi.” Stay with me. Her breasts brush my chest, the pad of her index finger tracing the contour of my upper lip. “You have a beautiful mouth.” “Toi aussi.” So do you. I feel my neck bow. Head bent down. Shoulders sag, body relaxed. “Je te veux plus que n’importe quoi que j’avais voulu dans ma vie.” I want you more than anything I’ve wanted in my entire fucking life.”
― Sara Ney, The Learning Hours
TOP 10 of 2017
Of Young Adult
ARISTOTLE AND DANTE DISCOVER THE SECRETS OF THE UNIVERSE
Yes, I know this book came out years ago but as I have said many times I can procrastinate when it comes to amazing books. ARISTOTLE AND DANTE DISCOVER THE SECRETS OF THE UNIVERSE is one of the best books that I have had the pleasure of reading. It is the book the everyone talks about and one that didn’t disappoint. This story is what I wish all romances could be about. One that brings joy and that has such acceptance from the parental units that made my heart swell. I always adore the romances that completely take the main character by surprise.
“I wanted to tell them that I’d never had a friend, not ever, not a real one. Until Dante. I wanted to tell them that I never knew that people like Dante existed in the world, people who looked at the stars, and knew the mysteries of water, and knew enough to know that birds belonged to the heavens and weren’t meant to be shot down from their graceful flights by mean and stupid boys. I wanted to tell them that he had changed my life and that I would never be the same, not ever. And that somehow it felt like it was Dante who had saved my life and not the other way around. I wanted to tell them that he was the first human being aside from my mother who had ever made me want to talk about the things that scared me. I wanted to tell them so many things and yet I didn’t have the words. So I just stupidly repeated myself. “Dante’s my friend.”
― Benjamin Alire Sáenz, Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
THE CASQUETTE GIRLS
I am such a paranormal fan and ALYS ARDEN fulfilled my reader’s heart with THE CASQUETTE GIRLS. This series was such a welcome breath of fresh air. It was a love letter to New Orleans centered on a girl and her ability to get into a crazy situation filled with vampires and witches, oh my!
“Am I really going to die tonight? As a sixteen-year-old virgin with only one passport stamp and no driver’s license?”
― Alys Arden, The Casquette Girls
THE HATE YOU GIVE
THUG is phenomenal. This book is my second favorite read for this year and it held the top spot for months. Angie Thomas created a story that is timely and relevant and so worth everyone’s time. Read this book folks and you will not be disappointed, believe me. I cannot wait for the movie that is set to come out next year.
“Sometimes you can do everything right and things will still go wrong. The key is to never stop doing right.”
― Angie Thomas, The Hate U Give
LETTERS TO THE LOST
Brigid Kemmerer wrote another one of my favorite reads for this year LETTER TO THE LOST. OMG! I don’t think I cried as much as I did with this book. It’s so emotional and it has some of the best angsty twisty moments that will leave you on the edge of your seat. After reading this book I will gladly follow Kemmerer on whatever literary adventure she wants to take me on.
“I want to fall into him. I want to let someone else carry this weight, even if just for a little bit. But it’s been too long.”
― Brigid Kemmerer, Letters to the Lost
ALLEGEDLY is wicked amazing. This gritty realistic fiction Young Adult novel will keep you guessing until the very end. I was totally sucked into this story and could not stop reading it until the very end. I love how it manipulated me and had my complete attention. I am keeping Tiffany D. Jackson on my radar and cannot wait for her next installment.
SCYTHE by Neal Shusterman is such a great book. It was a complete surprise to me and It caused me to think about humanity and what would happen if I had complete power of them. It is a scary concept that I liked exploring and I think that Neal did a fantastic job with it and cannot wait for the next installment in this series.
“My greatest wish for humanity is not for peace or comfort or joy. It is that we all still die a little inside every time we witness the death of another. For only the pain of empathy will keep us human. There’s no version of God that can help us if we ever lose that.”
― Neal Shusterman, Scythe
THE FEMALE OF THE SPECIES
OMG! THE FEMALE OF THE SPECIES completely destroyed me. I was left a sobbing mess but knew it could not end in other way. It is such an amazing book and I became an instant fan of Mindy McGinnis after I read it. I cannot begin to tell you how much this book affected me and how till this day I am haunted by it.
“You can love someone down to their core and they can love you right back just as hard, and if you traded diaries you’d learn things you never suspected. There’s a part of everyone deep down inside of them not meant for you. And the sooner you learn that, the easier your life is gonna be.”
― Mindy McGinnis, The Female of the Species
I had a hard time with my YA reads this year because they were so heavy that they seemed to take a bit of my soul. MOXIE was not one of those reads. It was uplifting and empowering and I wish that all young women could read this book and take it’s message with them wherever they may go. Jennifer Mathieu has created such an empowering book that it will be forever with me.
“it occurs to me that this is what it means to be a feminist. Not a humanist or an equalist or whatever. But a feminist. It’s not a bad word. After today it might be my favorite word. Because really all it is is girls supporting each other and wanting to be treated like human beings in a world that’s always finding ways to tell them they’re not.”
― Jennifer Mathieu, Moxie: A Novel
WE ARE THE ANTS
WE ARE THE ANTS is one of the best books I have read, it is dark and somewhat depressing because it’s about Henry, who has been abducted by aliens and now has to decide in 144 days if the earth is worth saving. There were moments that I felt the need to go fetal because it just destroyed me with all my emotions, yet it was so well written that I could forgive the author for torturing me.
“We may not get to choose how we die, but we can chose how we live.
The universe may forget us, but it doesn’t matter. Because we are the ants, and we’ll keep marching on.”
― Shaun David Hutchinson, We Are the Ants
A SEMI-DEFINITIVE LIST OF WORST NIGHTMARES
What an amazing book. I adored A SEMI-DEFINITIVE LIST OF WORST NIGHTMARES by Krystal Sutherland because it just completely surprised me. I was totally taken in by this book and it’s characters and could find myself within the pages of this novel. I have enjoyed everything that Krystal has written and I cannot wait to see what she has in store for us next.
“The old fear was there, the grapnel anchor lodged in her chest, the thing that wanted to pull her back away from the edge and whisper no, no, no. Yet there was a new thing: a lure. Something down in the water thatwhispered yes, yes, yes. Go forward, onward, into the unknown. It felt like something between destruction and thrill”
― Krystal Sutherland, A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares