This is what I like to call if it ain’t broke don’t try to fix it. It had all of the popular elements that we see these days. Even similar names to several books. I really enjoyed it overall especially that ending which definitely has me wanting to read book 1.
I really wish that I could sit here and come up with a top ten list or a top twenty but I don’t think when you’ve read so many books in one year that it is possible to narrow it down like that. Not unless you have read a great deal of clunkers. I’m happy to say that I have not read too many clunkers this year! I have read some freaking amazing books though. Some books that made me look at one topic or another from a different perspective. Some books touched me deeply. Others I connected with on a level that helped me to recognize pieces of myself that were previously hidden. Some gave me great ideas while others made me cry big ugly crying tears. In short it has been an absolutely wonderful year for me in books. I’ll try not to make too large of a list but if I told someone they had to read a book or a series these would be the ones at the top of my list. I broke it down a little as to give it some sort of structure. The Virgo in me enjoys being organized, even with my thoughts…
Overall favorite reads this year (not necessarily released this year):
Kincade’s Rose – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/682071607
Crescent Chronicles – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/397865062
Carry Your Heart – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/644615342
This Man Series – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/456187791
Metamorphosis – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/530655464
Up In the Air Trilogy – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/524328032
Original Sinners Series – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/539506380
Songs of Submission Series – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/739551637
Night Owl – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/772984039
Love Show – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/788192437
Hacker Series – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/712488315
Whiskey and A Gun – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/770249312
All The Pretty Lies – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/763472754
Fighting for Flight – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/543161765
Fighting to Forgive – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/549165879
Blind Obsession – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/717596258
The Reed Brothers Series – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/680439595
Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/755136669
Taken By Moonlight – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/708498591
My Masters Nightmare – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/736452600
Being Delightful – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/718729199
When You Were Pixels – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/698164152
Unteachable – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/681857797
The Tied Man – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/538269971
Safe Word – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/616033740
Undeniable – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/587774164
Sweet Peril – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/415028760
Edge of Never – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/432499748
Incendiary – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/374124083
She Likes It Irish – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/607194436
Beautiful Stranger – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/542103531
Willing Victim – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/584972691
Twisted Perfection – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/537425102
Release Me – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/582150236
Dark Light Series – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/551510998
Backstage Pass – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/571714905
Falling Into You – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/570225291
Made Me Tear Up And/Or Ugly Cry and I LOVED IT This Year:
Rock Bottom by RK Lilley
Metamorphosis by Erin Noelle
Falling Into You by Jasinda Wilder
Whiskey and A Gun by Jade Eby
The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Fighting to Forgive by J.B. Salsbury
Incendiary by Amy Bartol
Edge of Never by J.A. Redmerski
The Tied Man by Tabitha McGowan
Carry Your Heart by Audrey Bell
Undeniable by Madeline Sheehan
All the Pretty Lies by M. Leighton
Wait For You by J. Lynn
My Favorite Authors This Year: (In no particular order)
J.B. Salsbury – https://www.facebook.com/JBSalsburybooks
Ella Frank – https://www.facebook.com/ella.frank.31
Meredith Wild – https://www.facebook.com/meredithwild
Audrey Bell – https://www.facebook.com/audreybbell
Leah Raeder – https://www.facebook.com/leahraederbooks
Tiffany Reisz – https://www.facebook.com/littleredridingcrop
CD Reiss – https://www.facebook.com/CDReiss.writer
RK Lilley – https://www.facebook.com/RkLilley
CJ Roberts – https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCJRoberts
Erin Noelle – https://www.facebook.com/erin.noelle.98
Marita A Hansen – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Marita-A-Hansen/113130742120676
J.A. Redmerski – https://www.facebook.com/J.A.Redmerski
SL Jennings – https://www.facebook.com/authorsljennings
Jodi Ellen Malpas – https://www.facebook.com/JodiEllenMalpas
Addison Moore – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Addison-Moore/140192649382294
Amy Bartol – https://www.facebook.com/authoramyabartol
Tammy Falkner – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tammy-Falkner/134765283285270
Book Boyfriends I wish were not fictional:
Cole Madison – Edible – Ella Frank
Remy – REAL – Katy Evans
Søren/Kingsley/Griffin/Daniel – Original Sinners – Tiffany Reisz
Zsadist – Lover Awakened – J. R. Ward
Creed – Creed – Kristen Ashley
Blake – Hacker Series – Meredith Wild
Jonathan – Songs of Submission – CD Reiss
Greg Cage – Cage – Harper Sloan
Flynn – Willing Victim – Cara McKenna
Jonah – Fighting for Flight – JB Salsbury
Blake – Fighting to Forgive – JB Salsbury
Max Stella – Beautiful Stranger – Christina Lauren
Tristan – Bad Things – RK Lilley
Dorian – Dark Light Series – SL Jennings
Jack Henry – Beauty From Pain – Georgia Cates
The Reed Brothers (Logan, Matt, Pete, Sam, Paul) – Reed Brothers Series – Tammy Falkner
Tristan – Fifty Shades of Jungle Fever – LV Lewis
Jack Diamond – Love Show – Audrey Bell
Matt – Night Owl – M. Pierce
Colton – Safe Word – Teresa Mummert
Conall – Taken By Moonlight – Violette Dubrinsky
Jesse Ward – This Man Series – Jodi Ellen Malpas
Black Dagger Brotherhood Series – J. R. Ward – I am only on book 6 but this series is hands down epic!!!
Remy Goes to Therapy – Shara Azod – If for no other reason than this line: “It was her curse; she always attracted men that needed her far more as a therapist than a girlfriend.” Also Remy was all kinds of alpha hot!
The Alpha Group Series – Maya Cross – Hot, quick, steamy, very well written!
The Druid Series – Marata Eros – On fire HOT!!! Hot isn’t even the word for it. I couldn’t read it without blushing profusely!!!
This Love’s Not For Sale – Ella Dominguez – Her writing style throws me a bit but once I get used to it her books are so good and hot!
Worst Reads This Year & Why:
Overwhelm Me – A. C. Marchman – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/514223667
Consequences – Aleatha Romig – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/542726021
Simple Perfection – Abbi Glines – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/548316606
Beck – Harper Sloan – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/673059705
Disastrous – E.L. Montes – https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/579040923 – Hmm, this one doesn’t explain, so I’ll just tell you that it started out wonderfully then the plot just fell apart as the book went on.
The story was surprisingly gripping and complicated. I did feel some of the sexual situations were not very realistic for people that young of age. If you can handle the murder, rape, violence, and emotional abuse of this one it is well worth the read. However, if you are unable to connect with urban characters and understand a thug or hustler mentality… this may not be the book for you. I think I am interested in continuing this series but due to the depth of depravity it’s one of those series where I will have to space them out. I will say if you’re a fan of the grittier black movies of the early 90s or shows like The Wire this should be of interest to you. Also, those of you who enjoy the gritty MC books/shows may enjoy this as well. I think I need a drink & a rainbows & giggles read!!!
That’s what I’m talking about!!!!!!
Someone pass me a drink too!!!
I guess episode 4 was a fluke because this was every bit as twisted and amazing and sitting on the edge of your seat crazy as the first three!!!
Goodness, I can’t wait to see what happens next!
Well… I was so excited to read this. I didn’t feel like Axel or Cage were 5 star epic reads or anything but I enjoyed them for what they were and what they were trying to accomplish. I attempted to put that same way of thinking forward when reading this… especially since a piece of the proceeds are going to a great cause. Also, being a therapist I am usually drawn to stories that have some type of relation to or touch on mental health issues in some way.
Through a great deal of the book I vacillated from…
To just looking at it like…
And then by the end…
I was really bored through the first half or so of this book. It was so heavy and depressing and believe me if anyone gets the depth of the issues that they were discussing, I do. I just felt like it was poured on really thick and it wasn’t consistent. On the one hand you have someone dealing with severe depression, PTSD, and suicidal ideations… yet this person has the capacity to hide how they are really feeling from those that they love and the only ones that they have identified that they would trust to offer support. Many people do not reach out for help, and unfortunately that can end tragically. I am not saying that it is impossible for someone to have these issues and be able to hide how much they are hurting. In my experience though, I just didn’t find this variation believable. The blame game really began to wear on me as well. All of the constant throwing it in their faces and getting angry and arguing about it just felt contrived. These people are supposedly as close as family and especially the arguments between Beck and Greg really made me go “huh?” I didn’t get it.
As the book goes on every single thing that happens those that are aware of the issues are afraid it’s going to trigger a downward spiral or suicide attempt… Yet, this person chose to tell their story to multiple people several times through out the book. Someone who has experienced trauma and has PTSD would need to be able to ground themselves and have dealt with the trauma so that when they tell their story they do not re-traumatize them self. If someone has dealt with the trauma to the point where they are wanting to talk about it and their experience to others it is safe to say that they are not at a place where telling the story or going through an additionally difficult experience will automatically cause them to lose their shit. Especially, if they are still under consistent psychiatric care and getting support from those closest to them. It’s similar to when a therapist asks someone if they are suicidal… if they aren’t asking that question isn’t going to some how magically make them suicidal!
I found Beck to be a lackluster hero/alpha. I honestly think that he and Dee probably could have split a book with another couple and that this would have worked out a great deal better. I also find it interesting in these kinds of books when there is a threat or danger and then those who are at risk are put under lock down and then somehow every time the bad guy shows up it’s when they are alone or almost completely alone…
There were things that I did enjoy but so much of those other issues were too distracting for me. I put the book down several times and honestly almost DNF, many times. I understood what was attempted here and it just really missed the mark for me. Despite that I will continue with the series as I am interested in seeing what happens next.
So as my moniker states I am in fact an Alpha Addicted Therapist… this book was everything I love. I am ecstatic that this was one of those books that I didn’t know what to expect from it, especially with the mixed reviews I was seeing and then it turned out to be wonderful.
I found myself enjoying the writing style from the beginning and the story was interesting and something you could actually believe could have happened. I was captivated at only 10% in. I literally could not put it down once I began it. The sex was unapologetic and absolutely hot and wonderful for it. I always enjoy the more alpha characters and I love it even more when the more submissive of the two can embrace what turns them on and does it for them. I’m so tired of books where characters spend much of it questioning what is wrong with them or pretending that what gets them hot doesn’t. It’s not going to be for everyone it got weird, really dirty, and messy at times… I gobbled it up, but to each their own.
The real meat and potatoes of this book hands down was the last half of it, however. The story took a turn that I both did and did not see coming and then began to spiral into this heartbreaking series of events. Then once you are successfully built back up, you are ripped apart and left hanging because of that fucking epilogue!!!
I 125% need more stars for this book and know that it will be one that I will re-read several times between now and the summer when the sequel is released. When I think about how close I was to skipping over this one I’m just glad I don’t have to kick myself in the ass later for doing so!
The Wrong Man was another one of those little gems that you’re not expecting to like all that much but you give a try anyway! I’m pleasantly happy that I did! Tomas and Talia’s story was a scorching hot one. It was a different take on the billionaire saves the poor broken girl as well, which was refreshing. Talia is an African-American woman who comes from a privileged upbringing. Her grandmother raised her in the wake of her parents death and she has extremely high standards and expectations of Talia. When she discovers that Talia is getting divorced from her “perfect on paper” husband she is none to happy and attempts to spoil the happiness that Talia begins to find with Tomas. Tomas is from Cuba and is all alone in the US besides the friends that he has made. He is a player and always ready to bed the next willing participant. He knows Talia through their mutual friends and when she wants a no strings attached fwb relationship he is all about it… until he starts to develop feelings for her. They have a lot of misunderstandings. They come from totally different worlds. They do not match up on paper, with societies expectations, or in what they expected to want for themselves… but love is love and if these two can navigate their differences they are bound to make a connection neither one of them will be able to walk away from!
Did I mention it’s scorch the sheets hot, as well??? ;D
Talia & Tomas
Well, I know for most this is their favorite of this series thus far. I was really looking forward to it because it would be the first one where there was straight up M/M going on and all kinds of variations. I was expecting it to be a filthy good time! Once it got there it definitely was hot and inspired a great deal of one handed reading. However, this book was 50% too long!!! You could have chopped off the first half of this book and just went with the second and accomplished the same amount of progress. Also, the over description was making me want to pull my freaking hair out. I literally skipped over pages of inner monologue because it was repetitive and did nothing to help progress the story. I didn’t remember Kaleb and Zane being so long winded but I did take a massive break inbetween the two so maybe that had something to do with it. Anyway, I’m not saying it was awful… I just really hope that Ethan’s book doesn’t disappoint me as much! If you have a lot of time on your hands and want something panty melting hot read it!!!
This is the authors “warning”…
“Warning: This book contains sexy, smoking hot cowboys that may make your e-reader spontaneously combust. Consider yourself warned. This book contains sexual encounters and graphic language that some readers may find objectionable, including, but not limited to: m/f, m/m, m/f/m, m/m/f encounters, anal sex. Contains graphic material that is not suitable for anyone under the age of 18.” -Nicole Edwards
So basically, what I’m trying to say is that this is one of the best books that I have read this year and has wiggled it’s way on to my all time favorites list for sure!
Hadley Arrington is a college senior she has her future figured out, she knows what she does and doesn’t want and nowhere in that equation does love or relationships fit in. She’s brilliant, beautiful, and a real friend! She stands up for those that she loves and tries to do the right thing when she can. She’s been dealt some pretty shitty parents and even though they have impacted her life greatly, including destroying her belief in love, she keeps her head on straight and works to make a happy life for herself doing what she loves…
Jack Diamond is hot, he’s intelligent, he’s confused, and conflicted about life and he is everything that Hadley doesn’t know she wants. He has his own demons and difficulties and when she proposes a no strings attached relationship he thinks she is the coolest girl ever and that it couldn’t possibly go wrong….
David is Hadley’s best friend. He is also a senior. He’s gay and unlike some stories he has a realistically challenging road to travel, without it being stereotypical or overly predictable. He’s comical and a great friend, he’s caring, and kind, and love is not easy for him…
I really enjoyed all of the supporting characters, except Ben whose balls I wanted to chop off and then shove them into his ears!!! I just cannot say enough about this story… I won’t tell you anymore as I don’t want to give away ANYTHING at all! What I will say is that this is not just a romance and the accompanying story and journey it takes Hadley especially on is so worth the ride. The banter between Jack and Hadley and Hadley and David will have you rolling on the floor laughing. There are plenty of “Oh my gosh” moments and “Awwww that’s fucking adorable” moments as well as “Whoa, this is intense.” So seriously get it and read it and love it!!!!!
ARC graciously provided by author in exchange for an honest review.