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Thursday, December 1, 2016

2016 Holiday Giveaway!

Can you believe that 2016 is almost over? I can’t, but honestly I’m glad it’s almost over. It’s been one of the toughest years of my life. I lost Mr. Pud to cancer and nope, time has not done a damn thing to heal me. I’ve found ways to cope including devoting a lot of my time to training a certain terror named Hayley, and keeping a journal where I can write to Mr. Pud since he was my #1 confidant and my best friend. It hasn’t been easy keeping up appearances but you know what else helped?

Good books. And thankfully there have been quite a few this year. As I’ve done in the past, I’m going to list my top reads of the year and on December 31 I am going to give one lucky person a book off of my list to start the new year with! My Best Reads weren’t all fives though, some of them were fours and I picked them because I would go back and re-read them throughout the year and still get a kick out of them.

So without further delay, I present my list of Best Reads 2016 (In no particular order because that would be nuts)!

Tied to Trouble by Megan Erickson - I’ve read a few M/M romances but this one is definitely the best. Irresponsible but fun loving Chad Lake meets his match in nerdy, bow tie wearing Owen Hawkins. The two of them have this intense love/hate/lust thing going on for most of the book and of course Owen is concerned about his job since Chad's sister is technically his boss. Super sexy, funny and heartwarming. Review.

Taking the Score by Kate Meader - Secretary Emma Strickland hides a bad girl persona from her boss, Brody Kane until one night he finds out about her other job working at a strip club. These two don't look liked they'd be a match but Brody brings out Emma's hidden bad girl side while Brody gets to indulge in his secretary fantasies. Hot, sexy, and full of nerdy references that I enjoyed. Review.

Along Came a Rogue by Anna Harrington - The first of a few new to me authors that I’ve become a big fan of! Major Nathaniel Grey resolves to bring his ailing best friend’s little sister to him but instead of finding the same young girl he once knew, he finds that Emily is all grown up, a widow, and hiding secrets that could get them killed. Plus, when he sees her again she's pointing a gun at him. Definitely not a damsel in distress. Review.

Compromised by Emmy Curtis - Another new to me author who writes amazing romantic suspense where the women kick some ass! Sadie Walker’s wedding to Simon Tennant is ruined when gunmen attack her home and she realizes that Simon’s job will complicate her life. Sadie walks away from Simon but then a chance encounter during an undercover assignment some time later forces them back into each other’s lives. Review

As Good As New by Jennifer Dawson - I stumbled across this series last year and have been in love with it since! Penelope Watkins fell in love with her best friend’s brother at a young age and as teenagers she and Evan Donovan became close friends and a little more. Then Evan lost his father and left Penelope to play football. Years later and the two can’t stand to be in the same room together but when Evan injures himself, ends his football career, and sinks into a depression where only Penelope can reach him. From there, it only gets hotter. Review

Leaving Lily Behind by Christine Wenrick - Guardian Aiden Rowan is no longer human after agreeing to take part in a former Elder’s experiments involving vampire blood. He’s slowly becoming the creature he had hoped to defeat and he feels his humanity fading away until he meets Lily Abbott who claims she can help him. Afraid of hurting Lily, Aiden refuses her help and leaves her. When Lily is later attacked, Aiden suddenly appears and refuses to leave her side all while wondering what secrets Lily is hiding. Review

The Study of Seduction by Sabrina Jeffries - My love for Edwin Barlow was almost unnatural, unless you’re a book lover. Edwin Barlow, the Earl of Blakeborough and Lady Clarissa are total opposites but that doesn’t stop him from helping her fend off a French diplomat who won’t take “no” for an answer. When Edwin’s presence isn’t enough to stop Clarissa’s persistent suitor, Edwin proposes a marriage of convenience between friends and Clarissa accepts but what they both thought was just a friendly arrangement changes the more time they spend together. Review

Cuff Me by Lauren Layne - Homicide Dectectives Vincent Moretti and Jill Henley have been partners for years and while Jill has always held out hope that Vincent would see her as more than just a partner his gruff and clueless attitude doesn’t exactly inspire her to wait. So she doesn’t. She comes back from vacation a taken woman Vincent finds he doesn’t like the idea of anyone but him being with Jill. Review

The Wedding Pact by Katee Robert - As long as this series has new books, look for them to be on this list because it’s one of the best I’ve read and this is my favorite one of the series so far. Carrigan O’Malley and James Halloran belong to rival crime families but the red hot attraction between them is too strong to ignore and before long these two are risking their lives and defying their families just to be together. Review

The Hunter by Kerrigan Byrne - Elite Assassin Christopher Argent is highly sought out for his skills but at the same time he lives in the shadows because people fear him. He has a reputation for being unfeeling and efficient but all that changes when he meets Millie LeCour who happens to be his latest target. Suddenly he can’t complete Christopher can’t complete his mission and decides instead to protect Millie and find out who wants her dead and why. This historical romance does not shy away from the dark and dangerous world Christopher lives in. Review

An Indecent Proposal by Katee Robert - Yup another book in the O’Malley’s series because it’s just an amazing series. Olivia Rashidi knows all about criminal life, she was born into the Russian mob, but she’s trying to leave that behind in order to give her daughter a better life. When she meets Cillian O’Malley she knows she should give him a wide berth, his lifestyle is exactly what she’s trying to get away from yet Cillian’s vulnerability calls to her and soon the two are fighting against the odds to have a better life. Review

Do You Want to Start a Scandal by Tessa Dare - There’s been a misunderstanding at the Parkhurst Ball. There was a scandalous tryst in the library where Miss Charlotte Highwood was hiding and now everyone believes she was half of that tryst with Piers Brandon, Lord Granville as the other half. The last thing Charlotte wants is to marry someone as cold and arrogant and Piers but she has to work with him in order to find out just who the mystery lovers were. As Piers and Charlotte uncover clues, they also find out a few things about each other that changes the way they originally felt. Review

The Trouble with Mistletoe by Jill Shalvis - Look for more reviews and gushing about this new to me author. She’s wowed me to no end! Willa Davis has bad memories of Keane Winters so when he walks into her pet care center with his aunt’s devil cat and doesn’t remember her, she gets even angry. Then when she realizes that a part of her finds him attractive, she gets even angrier. Keane on the other hand can’t shake the feeling that Willa is holding a grudge against him for some reason but he’s grateful for her help with his aunt’s cat and for each chance to see Willa. His insistence that he’s a changed man starts to thaw Willa’s icy attitude and soon she’s falling for Keane. Review

Addicted by Elle Kennedy - THIS. This is how a dystopian romance should be done and I’m not surprised that it’s Elle Kennedy who does it best. Lennox and Jamie have been best friends since forever and in a post war world with no rules that means everything. When their home is attacked they’re forced to join another group of Outlaws. Lennox has secretly been in love with Jamie but when the man she’s been pining after rejects her, Lennox sees his opportunity to show her how good they can be if they cross the “Friends Only” line. From there Lennox and Jamie enjoy a little benefits to their friendship but for Lennox and soon for Jamie, it isn’t enough. Review

My Brown Eyed Earl by Anna Bennett - Once upon a time Margaret Lacy was betrothed to William Ryder but she refused to follow through with the arrangement her parents made. Then an accident took away everything from her and years later she finds herself penniless and in desperate need of a job. She applies as a governess to the Earl of Castleton but when she arrives at the interview she finds out that the Earl is none other than her former betrothed. Meg manages to convince Will to hire her as the governess for the twins left in his care but soon Will and Meg realize that there’s more than just a bitter history between them. Review

Deadly Silence by Rebecca Zanetti - A spin off of her Sin Brothers series, this book has Ryker Jones and his blood brothers running their own investigative agency but when they lose a client in a brutal way, the brothers are afraid their pasts have come back to haunt them. Adding to Ryker’s stress is paralegal Zara Remington, his sometimes lover. Ryker’s tried to keep things purely sexual between them but it’s all but impossible with someone like Zara and when she becomes a target, Ryker will do anything to keep her safe. Review

The Billionaire Next Door by Jessica Lemmon - A different kind of billionaire, Tag Crane is super laid back and looks more like a surfer than a rich business man. The ladies love him and he loves the ladies but when he has to come up with a way to make one of the Crane Hotels more profitable, Tag puts women on the back burner. Bartender Rachel Foster accepts a dog sitting job that will pay her well and allows her to live in a glamorous hotel suit but when she’s late one night from her bartending job she meets Tag and he hires her to help him rejuvenate the hotel he’s working on. Soon Tag and Rachel engage in a no strings fling that should run its course by the time Rachel’s done helping Tag with the hotel, except Tag is the one starting to think that maybe he might want to be around for the long haul. Review

Duke of Pleasure by Elizabeth Hoyt - At long last Alf gets her own story! Alf has survived the brutal streets of St. Giles by concealing her gender, and by learning to fight as the Ghost of St. Giles. By day she’s an information gatherer, but by night she is the masked vigilante. One night she sees a man being ambushed and recognizes him as Hugh Fitzroy, the Duke of Kyle and saves him. Before leaving Hugh she does something daring and kisses him. Hugh has been tasked with stopping the dangerous Lords of Chaos so he hires Alf to help him investigate just who is a member of the group. Since the last time he saw Alf she was in disguise he doesn’t immediately recognize her as the Ghost but he does eventually figure it out and that’s when things get interesting. Review

Wolf Unleashed by Paige Tyler - Okay so technically I haven’t read this one yet but I have it for review and I can honestly say that it WILL make this list because of the subject matter. Veterinarian Lacey Barton doesn’t have time for men like SWAT officer Alex Trevino because she’s hell bent on finding out who is behind the brutal dog fights that keep sending wounded animals to her clinic. Soon she’s in over her head when the trail leads to drug dealers, murder, and the middle of a SWAT operation where she witnesses Alex shift before her very eyes. Now Alex has to prove to her that not only is he one of the good guys, but that she’s the one for him.

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