I had some pretty awesome reads in 2019.
But 10 books stood out to me.
10 books that I feel made the year better.
Buy links embedded in photos.
It’s been said that you can’t love two men at the same time.
You can’t split your heart, soul, and body in half.
But I’m here to tell you, you can.
Dylan Cole is like ice, sharp and unpredictable, the thunder inside a tumultuous storm.
Smith Reid is warmth, soft and gentle, perfect like a sunny day.
Both are mine.
But I can have only one.
There are two sides to this tale.
I’m here to tell you mine.
If you think this story is about a cheater, you couldn’t be more wrong.
I went into this book blind. I didn’t even read the blurb before I started it. and WOW…….I am so glad I did it that way.
This book was AMAZING. It touched my heart in places that haven’t been touched by a book in a long time.
This book is told from 3 POV’s. You start with Alix (present day) and Dylan (the past) . Smith (present day) will enter later.
Alix is a 911 dispatcher and an ex-paramedic. She is living life the best she can. But Alix has demons. Alix has fears. Alix has lived though events that would tear others apart.
Dylan is a private airplane pilot and knew from the moment he saw Alix that she was what he wanted. Dylan and Alix are total opposites. He has money, she lives payday to pay day. He loves the expensive things in life, she loves the simple things. But they make it work. They love hard and fast.
Then there is Smith. Smith is a lawyer. He had a rough childhood but that made him who he is today. Smith and Alix randomly meet one night when his friend over-doses and she helps save him tell the ambulance arrives. They end up talking and decided to go on a date.
But things aren’t that simple for Alix. She knows she can never give Smith all of her because of Dylan.
This story is so much more than I could have asked for. This are smiles and tears. Love and pain. You get to see real emotions. You get to see real life situations. This book isn’t sugar coated. It’s real and raw.
This is the first book I have read were a main character is a 911 dispatcher. My husband is a dispatcher and they always go unnoticed.
Not all love stories are written the same way. Ours had torn chapters, missing paragraphs, and a bittersweet ending.
Luna Rexroth is everyone’s favorite wallflower.
Underneath the meek, tomboy exterior everyone loves (yet pities) is a girl who knows exactly what, and who, she wants—namely, the boy from the treehouse who taught her how to curse in sign language.
Who taught her how to laugh.
Knight Cole is everyone’s favorite football hero.
This daredevil hell-raiser could knock you up with his gaze alone, but he only has eyes for the girl across the street: Luna.
But Luna is not who she used to be. She doesn’t need his protection anymore.
When life throws a curveball at All Saints’ golden boy, he’s forced to realize not all knights are heroes.
Sometimes, the greatest love stories flourish in tragedy.
So many emotions! So many tears! So many WTF moments!
Knight and Luna have been friends their entire lives. (We met both of them in their fathers stories in the Sinner of Saints Series)
Luna is a select mute. After her mother left when she was 2, she stoped talking. Does she want to live her life like this? No. She wants to talk. The only person who ever hears her talk, and its just a word or two, is her step-mom, Edie. She just can’t do it. She can’t use her voice. It didn’t help when her mother left, why would it help now.
Knight is the player. Always has a girl around, but never the girl he wants. He wants Luna but he knows he isn’t good for her. He knows he is not the boy she needs. So he does everything he can to push her away, in the relationship kind of way. But he never lets her go too far. Why? He loves her.
But when Luna didn’t take his advances towards her, he pushed her away. And with the help of a friend of his (without his knowledge) it was enough to make her leave and go to college out of town.
Knight and Luna were both lost. Lost when they were apart. Lost when they were together.
Knight makes some terrible decisions that push Luna away even more than he already had. Luna makes some bad decisions because Knight pushed her away.
But when tragedy strikes, Luna comes back for Knight. She comes to save him. She comes to save her “Knight in Shining Armor”. But will it be enough? Is Knight too lost? And even worse, has Knight lost Luna forever?
This book made me want to pull my hair out at times. Knight was so frustrating. Hot and cold. Nice then mean. And he was defiantly a mean drunk. The things he said made me want to reach thought the pages of the book and punch him.
But he also broke my heart. He was so lost. So broken. And his mom (adoptive mom) Rosie was really sick. (She is from Scandalous and I loved her character)
But this book was so much more than just a book. It was about love and loss. It was about forgiveness. It was about learning that sometimes you need to take a step back and learn from your mistakes.
My life is over.
I swore I would never work at the whiskey distillery with my last name on it, that I would never be a part of my father’s legacy. But when I graduated with my art degree and realized there were no jobs, the devil appeared, and I sold my soul, agreeing to work in the family business if he’d give me the art studio I’d always dreamed of.
It can’t be that bad, I thought.
Until I realized my new boss was Logan Becker.
The Becker brothers have a reputation for being trouble, and since I love trouble, it’s no surprise to me that I’m infatuated by that forbidden fruit the first day I walk into the distillery. That lean, whiskey-eyed, too-hot-for-his-own-good man hates me — and I can’t blame him. His family has been at war with mine for decades, and for good reason.
The Beckers and the Scooters are the Montagues and Capulets of Stratford, Tennessee.
But if he’s Romeo, and I’m Juliet? Well… we all know how that story ends — and for that reason, I tell myself to steer clear.
Because if my father finds out I’m falling for Logan Becker, my life actually will be over.
And Logan’s will be, too.
Kandi, Kandi, Kandi… what a sweet read Neat was. It was the perfect enemies to lovers book.
Logan Becker was a tour guide at the local whiskey distillery. The distillery is all he had known for his entire life. His grandfather helped start the distillery and his father also worked there until his death (a very questionable death). Logan knew that he had to do what he had to do to keep his families name alive in the distillery. And to do this, he needed a promotion. A promotion that should be his, until she shows up.
Mallory Scooter wanted nothing to do with the distillery her grandfather started and her father now ran. She was always the rebel child, going against her parents wishes. But when her dad gave her a deal she could not turn down, she end up spending her days at the distillery with Logan, the enemy.
But do they have to be enemies? What happens when the enemies turn into friends? When the friends turn into more than just friends? What happens when there is a misunderstanding and someone over-reacts? Will everything be ruined?
Kandi….. this book was great. It was sweet and loving, but it had an edge to it also. I love how Logan and Mallory had to work hard to make their relationship work. I also love how it was not an insta-love story. How they had to learn about each other and see what the other person was truly like.
So ready for the other Becker boy’s books!!!!!
Everyone knows not to fall in love with your best friend.
But when your best friend is Michael Becker, it’s impossible not to.
He’s everything our town knows a Becker brother to be: devastatingly handsome, charming as a thief, and the icing on the cake — a sentimental musician who’s never without his guitar.
And he was mine. At least, that’s what I’d convinced myself.
Our bond was born in elementary school, strengthened by circumstance and the promise to always be there for each other, no matter what. And the best thing about my life was being friends with Michael Becker.
Until it was the worst.
I watched him fall in love with someone else, and helped patch him back up when she left him behind. But when he drops the bomb that he’s moving to New York, I realize it’s my last chance to tell him how I feel. And I ask him to make one more promise.
One summer. One list of adventures to remind him that our small town has more to offer than memories of the girl who left him behind.
One last chance to tell him I’m in love with him.
And I’m just dumb enough to believe that maybe he could love me, too.
If you know me, you know I usually don’t go for the super sweet, loving romance books. I like some grit and some darkness. But…. this book was totally not that. This book was sweet and loving and heart-touching and wonderful.
Kylie and Michael (Mikey) have best friends since they were 8 years old. They spent every day together until Mikey got a girlfriend in high school. When that girl up and left Mikey, he was devastated, but Kylie was there to put his pieces back together.
But when Mikey announces that he is going to move to New York, Kylie’s world gets turned upside down. Why? She is secretly in love with her best friend and he doesn’t know it.
Kylie plans a summer of adventure for him, a summer to remind him why he loves their town and why he should stay.
Mikey starts to realize that Kylie isn’t the same Kylie he grew up with. That she is now a woman and wonders how me missed the change.
As Kylie and Mikey start getting closer than just friends, a bomb will drop.
Will Mikey make the right decision?
Will Kylie understand his decision?
What will happen once that decision is made?
Kandi is great at writing love stories. You can tell that she puts her heart and soul into her stories.
Watching Kylie and Mikey grow over the summer in this book was great. You got to see their characters develop and you got to see them form a bond like they had never had before.
Now to wait for Jordan’s book.
It was supposed to be a typical work trip. New York to San Francisco, window seat, exit row. Maybe a mimosa.
Then, seat 14B sat down. When our eyes met, the flight became anything but routine.
I could pinpoint the moments in my life where everything changed forever.
Meeting Jared on that flight was first.
Falling in love with him was second.
Discovering the secrets he kept was third.
Putting my broken self back together and forgetting what I learned would be difficult. Forgiving Jared would be impossible.
He said, before me, nothing mattered. But after him, nothing would ever be the same.
Marni, Marni, Marni… what did you do to me with this book?!?!
This book was so much more than just a great read. It was wonderful. It was amazing. It was one of those books that once you start it, you can’t put it down.
Billie, Jared, Honey…… how you made their lives mesh together, how you made their stories connect… it was brilliant.
I kept waiting for that shoe to drop… for everything to fall apart…. And when it did….. my heart sunk.
“Billie didn’t realize something…I was going to hurt her far worse than Flight 88.”
I felt Billie’s pain. I felt Jared’s pain. I felt Honey’s pain.
“Billie, in all these years, I’ve never loved anyone…before you.”
I can’t go into many details without giving away to plot of the book…. But let me tell you something…. This is a book you DO NOT want to miss out on.
Marjorie Steel is still healing from the events of the past year, and she’s happy to put her plans to study culinary arts on hold to help her best friend deal with a difficult pregnancy and two recently adopted troubled boys. The fact that Bryce Simpson spends a lot of time at the Steel Ranch is a benefit, and she’s ready to see if her attraction to him might be something more.
Bryce wants to do a hard day’s work on the ranch. Once his muscles give out and he collapses from exhaustion, maybe he’ll stop torturing himself over his late father’s horrific double life. The Steels have a different idea. They ask Bryce to take an executive position complete with a profit share. As he has a young son and widowed mother to support, it’s an offer he can’t refuse. The only catch is Marjorie. She’s beautiful, smart, feisty, and her kisses set him on fire. But he’s an empty shell with nothing to offer her, and she deserves the world.
As the sins of his father continue to haunt him, Bryce learns the horrors of the past may not yet be buried.
I feel like I have been waiting on this book FOREVER!!
Helen told us at first she wasn’t going to write Marjorie’s story….but I am SOOO glad she did.
I have wanted Marjorie and Bryce to have a story together since the beginning. They always had a connection. They were always secretly flirting when they though no one was watching.
Marjorie is living with Talon and Jade, helping them with their two new adoptive boys and helping Jade through a rough pregnancy. She feels like it is her job to help her family. To help take care of them. Why? Because she blames herself for what happened to Talon. If she hadn’t been born, none of this would have happened.
Bryce is having his own issues. After learning about his father, he feels like he failed everyone because he had no idea what kind of monster his father was. Bryce is now taking care of not only his son, but his mother too. When he needs a change of pace, he asks the Steel brothers for a job.
Problem with that…. He will be around Marjorie more. The woman he has to fight himself from wanting. The woman he wants more than anyone he has every wanted. He thinks he is not good enough for her. He thinks she can do better.
But what happens when their attraction to each other becomes too much?
What happens when the past comes back and makes itself known again?
I can’t wait to see where the next two books take us.
Let me tell you something, this book will leave you Breathless.
This book has so much heart and soul in it. Helen has a way with words. A way of sucking you into the story. A way of making you not want to put the book down because you just have to know what is going to happen next.
The ending of this book……OMG…… tears…….so be prepared!!!!!
If you have not read the first 9 books in this series, you will be lost if you try and read this book. Nine books seems like a lot but….once you start, you won’t want to put them down!
They say revenge is a dish best served cold.
I’d had four years to stew on what Daria Followhill did to me, and now my heart was completely iced.
I took her first kiss.
She took the only thing I loved.
I was poor.
She was rich.
The good thing about circumstances? They can change. Fast.
Now, I’m her parents’ latest shiny project.
Her housemate. Her tormentor. The captain of the rival football team she hates so much.
Yeah, baby girl, say it—I’m your foster brother.
There’s a price to pay for ruining the only good thing in my life, and she’s about to shell out some serious tears.
Daria Followhill thinks she is THE queen. I’m about to prove to her that she’s nothing but a spoiled princess.
Everyone loves a good old unapologetic punk.
But being a bitch? Oh, you get slammed for every snarky comment, cynical eye roll, and foot you put in your adversaries’ way.
The thing about stiletto heels is that they make a hell of a dent when you walk all over the people who try to hurt you.
In Penn Scully’s case, I pierced his heart until he bled out, then left it in a trash can on a bright summer day.
Four years ago, he asked me to save all my firsts for him.
Now he lives across the hall, and I want nothing more than to be his last everything.
His parting words when he gave me his heart were that nothing in this world is free.
Now? Now he is making me pay.
All Saints High is a spin-off of The Saints series but L.J. Shen. I loved The Saints sereis and I was so excited when I heard about this new series. A difference in this series is that the characters are in high school where as in the old series they were adults.
So lets talk about the first book, Pretty Reckless.
At first I did not like Daria Followhill. I felt that she was a prissy princess who wanted everything. I felt that she was ungrateful for what she had.
I was wrong. Really, really wrong.
Daria wanted to be loved. She wanted to be enough. But she felt that she never was.
Daria made some really awful decisions in her youth. Heck, even in her older teen years she mad bad decisions. (Her mouth being on of her biggest issue. Girl has NO filter!)
But what she never expect was a stranger from her past to show up in her home.
What would happen if he learned her secrets? Would he use this to destroy her?
Penn Scully already knows the secret Daria wanted to keep hidden and he was out for revenge.
What he didn’t know what that the girl he though was the worst person in the world, would make her way under his skin and that he would start to care about her.
But it’s not all sunshine and roses.
There are many secrets out there, secrets that could destroy Daria.
What happens when her secrets get out? What happens when another person from the past shows up and exposes all the secrets? What happens when Penn is forced to choice between two people?
Daria and Penn were an enemies to lovers story. They hated each other for different reason. But that hatred push them together. That hatred made them create a bond that was unbreakable (or was it?).
I will say the only thing that go me in this book was that there were a lot of characters and sometimes I would have to re-read a part to understand what was going on with who, but other than that I loved it!
Everything Katerina Nielsen knew burned to the ground when she was sixteen. She had nothing but memories to keep her warm at night. At eighteen, life throws her into an inferno and the only choice is to become someone else.
Until she becomes the interest of two strangers.
They offer her a chance at a normal life. But she’s learned everything in life comes at a price and the cost of what they’re giving her may just burn her alive.
With the promise of a future she’s always wanted, she can’t refuse.
But what happens when a dark secret comes to light?
Will she rise from the ashes and embers, or will she burn?
Dani, Dani, Dani….What did you just do to me with this book. I went in thinking that this book was going to be one thing and it was something totally different.
This book is told from three POVs.
When Katerina was 16, she lost everything she knew. Her parents, her home, everything that was her life. Thrown into the foster care system, she became a lost soul.
Two years later, Kat is doing what she need to do to make money; being a “companion” to men who needs dates. Never having gone as far as some of the other girls, Kat is determined to only do this for 12 months, enough time to get money for college.
Ash first sees Kat when she walks into his hotel bar. He is taken from her from the very beginning. He knows why she is there and approaches her. When he makes her an offer she can’t refuses, she goes with him for the evening. But she does something to him, something inside him. She makes him feel feelings he hasn’t ever felt. Once she leaves, he doesn’t know what he is going to do, but he does know that she needs to be in his life.
Ember knows his brother Ash as lost it. He did the one thing he told him not to do. But once Ember meets Kat, he understands why Ash did what he did. Ember is the cool headed brother. The brother that has feelings and emotions. When it comes to Kat, Ember knows what he needs to do. He knows what he needs to do to get his plan to work.
But Ash and Ember are keeping secrets from Kat. And Ember is keeping secrets from Ash.
What happens when those secrets come to life? Will Kat every forgive Ash and Ember? Will Ash be able to survive after he finds out Ember’s secret?
If you are a K. Webster fan, this book reminded me of My Torin. (Which I gave 5 stars)
This book was not what I expected. I went into it with my mind set on a plot. I thought I had it figured out. But I was wrong.
This book is a bit different than most books I have read from Dani Rene. I felt that this book had more heart and emotions in it. I have read many Dani books and have given 5 stars to some of those, but this book was just at a different level.
My life has been served to me on a gold platter to be devoured by my silver spoon.
Money, money, and more money. It’s the backbone of the Goddard name. I’m the only son, so it’s all mine for the taking.
But sometimes money isn’t enough. I always want more, yet nothing seems to satisfy me.
My father has made sure I become a part of The Elite Seven. Where most candidates are chosen, I was given my place. Everything comes at a price, though. Luckily, I can afford any price—no one has more money than God.
The Elite Seven have their initiations. My assignment is personal and beneath me: steal a car and send a warning. It’ll hurt my best friend in the process, but we both made a pact going into this. There’s no line we won’t cross.
My task makes an ugly turn and I nearly take a life. Such a small, unimportant person—someone no one would even notice was gone. She’s a problem my money and power can easily sweep under the rug.
It’s what my father wants. It’s what my brothers want. But when she finally opens those big, innocent brown eyes, I realize I’ve found what I’ve been searching for my entire life. I don’t want my little problem to disappear…I want to keep her.
Accept your sin wisely, for the tasks given to earn your place are not for the weak—they’re for The Elite.
Money is my legacy, but I want something money can’t buy.
I am Baxter Samuel Goddard V.
I am Gluttony.
Onto God’s story and it is my favorite one so far.
Baxter Samuel Goddard (God) the fifth. The boy who had everything growing up and never wanted for anything.
You find out early in the story why God’s sin is Gluttony, it is because of this father. Everything with his father is alway in excess, no matter what it is. And in some ways, God wants so be nothing like his father. You learn that God’s father can do whatever he wants and can get whatever he wants. Which can be both good and bod for God.
Another thing you find out about God is that he doesn’t really care of he joins the Elite Seven or not, he’s only doing it because of this father.
On the night when God was competing his task given to him by the Elite, he hits an innocent girl walking home from work. While she is in the hospital, God refuses to leave his side. Everyone tells him to give up on her, but he can’t give up on this girl, even though he doesn’t know her.
How will this girl play into God’s life? Will she be able to change him for the good or will she end up being used against him?
This book is about change. Changes God makes in his life. Changes that are happening in the Elite.
HOLY COW!!!! There is a scene in this book that I was so excited about. When you read the scene, you will understand.
I like how this book was dual POV. Most of it was form God’s POV but some of it was from the mystery girls POV.
K. Webster did a great job with this book. I felt that the character development was spot on. I don’t think she rushed the story at all and I feel that she did a great job getting us ready for the next book, Sloth.
Can’t wait to read the next 2 books and see how it ends.
Ghosts are real.
Well, technically speaking, maybe not. But the ones that haunt a man’s soul? Those are very real. So real, in fact, that there are times when Castiel would rather silence them forever in the worst way possible than to go on living with them haunting his every step.
All it took was one single second in time for his attention to drift, and everything changed.
Life as he once knew it, is over.
Now he’s struggling to make sense of the pieces that are left, and he’s fairly sure at least half of them are missing.
He’s living for three things now.
His club—the Bear Bottom Guardians.
His work as a police officer for Bear Bottom Police Department.
And the occasional glimpse of a girl that makes his spirit feel free.
Despite the ghosts that haunt him, he’s not willing to present them with another target. Which is why he has to stay away from her. He can’t touch her. He can’t talk to her. He can’t get anywhere near her.
Not and live with himself afterward.
The only problem is, Turner doesn’t care what Castiel wants. She also has a solution for his ghosts.
You may call her Ms. Ghostbuster.
HOLY MOTHER OF GOD!! The feels in this book!!!
I have been waiting to Liner’s story for what seems like forever now and it did not disappoint.
Turner and Castiel have not gotten along since they first time they met each other, when Castiel gave Turner a speeding ticket.
As you read you learn that both Turner and Castiel have not had the easiest lives, for different reasons.
When the pieces of life get thrown together, Castiel becomes Turners rock. He is there for her.
But is their new connection enough to survive what life is going to through at them.
This book is probably the most emotional book I have read in a long time. I absolutely balled my eyes out in this book. The topic Lani talks about hits very near to my heart. I have no idea how she wrote some of those scenes but they were wonderful!
Throw in a strange man around town and you have yourself an amazing book.
This book completely killed my emotions!!!!
I really, really loved this book. I could tell Lani put her heart into this book.
Defiantly a 5 star read for me.
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I haven’t read any of these but I just added a few to my TBR for 2020 🙂 Thanks for sharing this!
Excellent selections for an excellent post – I am so proud of you!