Friday, January 3, 2014

FAB FIVE of 2013: Top Reads of the Year

Well today wraps up our FAB FIVE lists and we end it with a BANG of course...
We are giving you our TOP READS of 2013...
We had some tough choices to make...but we narrowed it down to the following..
So, check them out and let us know what you think...

 Man...I am really wondering why we decided to do this now...Choosing 5 out of the 131 books that I read in 2013?? TOO FREAKIN HARD!!!!
I mean, there are some amazing books that have definitely stuck with me and always come to the forefront of my mind, but that doesn't mean that the others aren't just as fabulous...
But, since we are narrowing it down...I am giving you the ones that I kept thinking about over and over...
In no particular order they are....

1. ALL THE PRETTY LIES by M. Leighton

I had the BIGGEST book hangover from this book....Weeks after reading it I still couldn't get over it...
*chuckles* AND that is the best feeling in the world...
I love M. Leighton's books...But when she brought us this one, it forever solidified a place on the all time favorites shelf in my soul...

2.  ONE TINY LIE by K.A. Tucker
Well, I was eagerly awaiting this book since I LOVED Ten Tiny Breaths.  I had no idea what to expect but once I finished it, I knew that it was one of my top reads.  Again, I couldn't stop thinking about it.  I was blown away with how much it reached in to my soul and claimed me...

3.  INTO THE DEEP by Samantha Young
Another fabulous author that I just adore...And when she brought us this phenomenal tale I was branded for life.  Brilliantly written with amazing characters I literally could not put it down until I devoured it.  

4.  IN A HEARTBEAT by Teodora Kostova
WOW!! I don't know if I can tell you just how effected I was from reading this book.  Once I started it I had to finish it.  There was no putting it down for a break...I stayed up ALL NIGHT to discover that this book took my breath way...IN A HEARTBEAT....
It is and will always be a top favorite of mine...

5.  CALL ME CRAZY by Quinn Loftis

I adore Quinn Loftis and her Grey Wolves series...So when she branched out and wrote this novel I was curious as to what we were going to get...
Can I say that I was floored with the amazing story that she had to tell in this book and it gripped my heart so tight that I can still feel the remnants of how wonderfully powerful this story is...
She blew me away and frankly I am not surprised because she is just that great...

Whew...That was difficult...But I do have some that I feel should be on that list above just as well...
Here they are...(I may cheat even more than Shell...sorry!!!)

  • Exquisite Betrayal by A.M. Hargrove (Dark Waltz too!!)
  • Definitely, Maybe in Love by Ophelia London
  • Under Different Stars by Amy Bartol
  • Inception by Teal Haviland
  • AnguiSH by Lila Felix
  • Wide Awake by Shelly Crane
  • Playing Patience by Tabatha Vargo
  • The Edge of Darkness by Melissa Andrea
  • Sweet Requiem by Bailey Ardisone
  • Foreplay by Sophie Jordan
  • A Matter of Truth by Heather Lyons
  • Article 5 by Kristen Simmons
  • Callum and Harper by Fisher Amelie
  • Twice Tempted by Jeaniene Frost
  • House Rules by Chloe Neill
  • Real by Katy Evans
  • One Tiny Secret by Adam Kunz
  • Gabriel's Inferno by Sylvain Reynard
  • Ashes and Ice by Rochelle Maya Callen
  • Wicked Thing by Angeline Kace

 I know I really went over...BUT...BUT...I just had to mention these all...They are books that I absolutely LOVED and highly recommend to anyone...

It was nearly impossible to pick only five books. This was a great year for readers. TONS of new authors. A new genre. So many choices and opportunities. I read about half of what Kat read but still hit platinum (I'm not a gold fan, LOL.) with most every one. Am I selective? Somewhat. Still I like to take chances, shake things up, and just give these amazing Indie authors the chance they deserve. In so many cases, I'm so glad I did.
Of course I had my favorites who came back and blew me away again. So in no particular order, as with all our other lists, here are the ones that really, really stood out in 2013...

1. Pixie Dust by D.C. Grace

By far one of my favorite writers. D.C. is just phenomenal. Her words are pure magic. The first book in the series (Dragon Wings), totally blew me away. THIS one??? Blew me to another dimension. Without a doubt it had all the magic, mystery and suspense of DW, but D.C. really pushed boundaries and ran wands blazing with a storyline that was beautiful, tragic and downright fearless. And the cliffhanger? I think my heart actually stopped. In the end, Pixie Dust was outstanding and exceeded all of my expectations.

2. Prophecy by Ellen Oh

If you haven't noticed, I'm a big fan of fantasy. This one was on my radar early on and one of my first reads of the year. Another beautifully constructed world. A fantastic and endearing heroine.
Heart pounding action and more. It's everything you want in an historical fantasy and perfect for all ages.

3. Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

What can I say. Cassie always wrecks me emotionally. Of course she did it again. CP was near perfection. I got my fill (if that's possible), of some of my all time favorite characters. I learned so much more about their histories and how they impact our Shadowhunter's futures. Their relationships came full circle, prophecies were fulfilled, and many of our questions are answered. It was spellbinding. Tragic. So painfully passionate. And absolutely beautiful. I was a balled up mess through most of it and my eyes were swelled for days. Some might not call that an endorsement but when you love the characters as much as I love these, it's the most you can hope for in a world full of war and uncertainty.

4. Keep Me Still by Caisey Quinn

I can't say enough about this book. And yet I'm at a loss for words. One of the most powerful and painful storylines I've ever read. It made my heart swell- only to stomp on it and tear it to shreds. Caisey created characters so wonderfully f***ed. I fell instantly in love with them. Hurt for them. Hoped and dreamed for them. I held on for dear live as they did the same. Why put myself through this torture? It was more than worth it to experience the heartache, the struggles, and absolute pain as Layla and Landen both grew, learned about themselves and the world and became each other's home. Keep Me Still was heart wrenching. At times very dark. And utterly beautiful. I suggest you read the short prequel, Let Me In and the sequel novella, Hold Me Close. They make the time spent a complete and fully satisfying experience.

5. Burning by Elana Arnold

A very different contemporary read. A modern day gypsy and a small town boy. I was hooked from the first page. I loved Elana's style and the cadence of the alternating POV's of Ben and Lala. It flowed beautifully. And the landscape that Elana painted made it easy to get lost in both of their worlds. It didn't end the way I had hoped, but it was the best possible conclusion for the moral of the story. I really wish the story would continue.

Many honorable mentions. I want to make them all my #1...

•A Tale of Two Centuries by Rachel Harris
Rachel is another of one those authors that I will read ANYTHING she puts out there, and she had a lot to offer in 2013, but this sequel to My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century was just SUPER and AMAZING. Once again, she brought her characters to life and took us on a whirlwind of discovery. Learning who you're meant to be. Who your real family and friends are. And finding real, true, all consuming love. I'm chomping at the bit for the next one.
•Ashes & Ice by Rochelle Maya Callen
Simply beautiful. Dark. Mysterious. A stunning debut. Another one that left me dying for the sequel.
•Shattered Grace by K.A. Raines
Another amazing debut. Beautifully written. Compelling characters. Captivating storyline. Must have the sequel.
•Snake in the Grass by Staci Hart
Another unique tale in Staci's Good Gods series. Still one of the most clever and entertaining of plotlines ever. Fascinating and powerful characters. Super sexy and great fun. The followup novella, What the Heart Wants, is just as good and also a must read.
•Into the Deep by Samantha Young
Sam brought us a really different story this time around. It was as mesmerizing and endearing and any of her books, but it was much darker. More intense. Full of raw passion and pain. It really got to me- in a good way.
•Witch Born by Amber Argyle
I just LOVE this series. Unlike any other witch tales you will ever read. All around stunning. Lyrical. Completely enthralling.   She really amazes me with her storytelling and creativity.
Beats by Kendall Grey- the whole trilogy is phenom but this is my fave.
All I'm going to say is holy mother******. Abso-freaking-lutely AMAZING. Dirty. Dirty. Dirty. Rock and roll heaven. You must meet Toombs.

Of course there were many more, but I've already broken the rules- and I think I hear Kat telling me to "wrap it up". Same 'ol story.

We really hope you enjoyed our lists. And if you haven't read these wonderful stories, we really encourage you to do so. Each one has touched our hearts and left us wanting more. We've gone as far as stalking the authors, joining their street teams, and just generally plastering and shouting their names and our praise everywhere we could.

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