Sunday, July 14, 2013

My Top 25 Books of 2013 (So Far) Part 2

Part Two

Here is the continuation of My Top 25 Reads of 2013...So Far. Today is numbers 15 through 6. Buy links will be posted after every 5 books and make sure to add those that you haven't read to your TBR lists now!

Dark Lover by J.R. Ward

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there's a deadly turf war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other - six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing more than Wrath, the leader of The Black Dagger Brotherhood.

Yes, I know I am late to the game but remember Demon at my Door? I am not a paranormal reader. My friends Luna, Jena and I all decided to take the plunge after our friends Franzi and Raine told us we were missing out. BDB became a drug to me. I could not put the book(s) down. I was reading in the car at stop lights, at the restaurant, at the park with the kids, while cooking dinner (more like burning because I wasn't paying attention), at the pool - staying up until 4 am to finish the books. I read the first 6 books in a 7 day period. And these are not small books people. So what am I trying to say? Go read these books if you have not. They are THAT good!

Upside of Letting Go by Nacole Stayton

Haley Martin is no stranger to loss. One tragic event takes her entire family, leaving lingering nightmares to torment her at every turn. By accident she meets Kyler King, a beautiful young man with a tragic past as well. He has no interest in settling down with anyone. As Kyler and Haley’s physical attraction becomes deeper, the secrets they have kept hidden threaten to surface. An unannounced visitor causes their pasts to collide with their present. 

Kyler and Haley had me hooked. The pain in this book was severe. Their love was intense and they didn't know where it would take them. Then their world gets turned upside down. I cried with this book. I felt the pain and sorrow, joy and redemption. Such a good read!

His Perfect Passion by Raine Miller

Darius always dreamed Marianne, his virgin bride, would be a passionate woman, but the more entangled they become, the harder it is for Darius to play the role of ‘master,’ for ultimately it will never give him that which he wants most of all—Marianne’s love.

Let's see. How do I admit this? I really didn't know if I wanted to read Raine Miller's historical romance novellas. I know I hear the gasps of horror being voiced by those who know me. I had tried to read other historical romance novels and I had a really hard time connecting with them. Like paranormal, I (at that point) really didn't like going out of my comfort zone. Well I had a medical problem, which left me in bed for a good two weeks. Lots of time for reading. So I took the plunge. 

Man, did I ever want to kick myself. Raine has a way of painting a picture with her words that pulls you in and makes you feel every emotion her characters are feeling, experiencing. The emotions, the passion, the love, the fears. So I read His Perfect Passion and I was amazed. Blown away. I not only read His Perfect Passion but The Undoing of a Libertine ~ not once, not twice, but three times that week. Just like Ethan, Darius is passionate, erotic and made me want to go live in the 1830s to hunt him down. Just being honest here. <3 Darius. 

Running on Empty by L.B. Simmons

I had the perfect life. 
Beautiful and loving husband.Three gorgeous little girls. 
Successful career. 
The only thing missing was the white picket fence. 
I really wanted that fence.

Alex lost is all. Her loving husband. Herself. How would she ever find love after such a devastating lose. But she had her girls and she had to live for them. Was she really living though?  Then the last person she ever expected to walk back into her life, comes riding into town on a motorcycle. 

This story made me laugh, made me cry and made me feel hope, that all is not lost and it is possible to turn around, even when you think you are at a dead end.  A marvelous read that I totally fell in love with. Alex's three little girls will melt your heart. 

Grounded by R.K. Lilley

After a short but earnest courtship, Bianca can no longer deny her feelings for James, and though she’s tried her hardest, she can’t help but see that he cares deeply for her, as well. In a completely uncharacteristic move, she has put aside her misgivings and agreed to live with the enigmatic billionaire. Is her leap of faith the beginning of something wonderful, or is it too much, too fast?

James Cavendish. Enough said.

Ok, maybe I can say a little more. (hehe) The conclusion of the Up in the Air Series was magnificent! It was full of suspense, love and redemption. And this book had THE BEST EPILOGUE EVER to end a series!!! 

Undeclared by Jen Frederick

For four years, Grace Sullivan wrote to a Marine she never met, and fell in love. But when his deployment ended, so did the letters. Ever since that day, Grace has been coasting, academically and emotionally. The one thing she’s decided? No way is Noah Jackson — or any man — ever going to break her heart again.

This story was so good. Intertwined with the letters from the 4 years of correspondence, you came to know about the friendship and growing love between Noah and Grace. You saw their fears and their love for one another, not knowing if they were taking the right step in the right direction. I had a grin on my face while reading. The supporting characters are not only complimentary but well written and fun too. I loved this book and can't wait for Unspoken. (Which I will have the cover reveal on Monday)

Julliard or Else by Nichele Reese

This is a twisting story of young love torn in two. 

Abigail McCall has been accepted into Juilliard for Ballet. Being nineteen, she’s ready to move out of her tight shell at her parent’s house and in with her new roommates. Abigail finds herself distracted with things she never saw herself doing.

'Hey, I’m Tucker. That’s all it took. 
His own name rolling off his tongue.

This story is captivating, intoxicating, heart-breaking and redemptive. It will take you on a roller coaster ride of emotions and best of all there is not a cliffhanger! There is also a little cameo of the Black Falcon boys from Michelle Valentine's Rock Series.

Picturing Perfect by Melissa Brown

Hadley Foster has always been a planner. But, since the age of nineteen, things haven’t exactly gone according to plan… not at all. Jason Kelly has a great life. He’s a successful self-published writer who’s living his dreams. But, something is missing.

I adore Melissa Brown. I fell in love with Bouquet Toss and we saw a glimpse of Jason in Champagne Toast. So I was thrilled when I heard that my favorite t-shirt loving, author was getting his own book. And Jason does not disappoint in this book. His swoon worthy points quadrupled for me and I could not get enough of him. This book made me laugh, swoon, cry both tear of joy and pain. Hadley is enduring and you feel for her and can understand her and you probably know someone like her in your own life. Melissa's books flow with such grace and before you know it you are at the end. Craving more of her fascinating story telling.

Music of the Heart by Katie Ashley

For Abby Renard, the plan was supposed to be simple—join her brothers’ band on the last leg of their summer tour and decide if she’s finally ready for the limelight by becoming its fourth member. Of course, she never imagined stumbling onto the wrong tour bus at Rock Nation would accidentally land her in the bed of Jake Slater, the notorious womanizing lead singer of Runaway Train. When he mistakes her for one of his groupie’s, Abby quickly lets him know she sure as hell isn't in his bed on purpose.

If you love The Proposition and The Proposal - you will love this book. Not only is Jake funny and swoon worthy - so is the entire band - Brayden, AJ and Rhys. Abby is a spunky, spitfire who stands up for herself and doesn't back down. LOVE THAT!!

Tangled by Emma Chase

Drew Evans is a winner. Handsome and arrogant, he makes multi-million dollar business deals and seduces New York’s most beautiful women with just a smile. He has loyal friends and an indulgent family. So why has he been shuttered in his apartment for seven days, miserable and depressed? 

Where to begin with Tangled? It's hard to put into words just how much I loved, adored, delighted, worshiped and was just smitten with Tangled! (You get my drift). It was such a refreshing new take on a love story and I was hooked from the very start. Drew is our host and narrator for this story. The book reminded me of Ferris Bueller. It was as if Drew would stop to explain things - eye to eye - so you would get the point. And Drew's point is a no holds bar view of how men view one-night stands, romance and girls in general. 

This book had me chuckling. It is well written, refreshing, original and just a breath of fresh air.  

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