Happy New Year to everyone!
As I was looking through the site and realized how many books I'd read and reviewed (and how many I'd read that I didn't review), I thought I'd do a top 10. I'm a pretty forgiving reader, and I enjoy almost every book I read, so how am I to pick? Well, I decided that I would pick books that had either a lasting emotional impact on me, or made me laugh, or were otherwise more memorable than any other book. So without further ado... Here are my top 10 reads of 2006. In no particular order.
10) Into the Storm - Suzanne Brockmann: What is there to say? Brockmann is a master. I adore the Team 16 books and the Troubleshooter series. This one was no exception. Great hero/heroine. Great setting. Great secondary characters. Great emotion (Brockmann shows macho men crying like no other author ever could). Just great.
9) Under the Wire - Cindy Gerard: The latest in the Bodyguard series. My 2nd favorite. Fan-fricken-tastic. Next to To the Edge, the first Bodyguard book, this one is my favorite. I loved Manny and Lily. There was not a moment that I wasn't drawn into the storyline. Not a moment where I rolled my eyes. Not a moment where I got bored. Nothing was overdone. Nothing was faked. Loved, loved, loved it.
8) Into the Fire - Anne Stuart: I cringed, I cried. Anne Stuart is a master of the dark hero. Dillon is beautifully drawn. As always, the heroine walks the TSTL line, but remains on the correct side of it. This is a controversial book, although for the life of me, I can't see why it's any more controversial than any of her others. I believe I plagiarized Jen when I reviewed this one. Fucking fabulous book.
7) Passion - Lisa Valdez: This was on everybody's TBR list. I read it late in the game. I think I've reread it about 3 or 4 times since. Wow. Loved the major alpha hero who wasn't afraid to wear his heart on his sleeve. Loved the moral heroine who wasn't afraid to love sex.
6) Lord Perfect - Loretta Chase: My first Chase book. Absolute perfect blend of story, characters and dialogue.
5) Lord of Scoundrels - Loretta Chase: What is there to say, except that Sebastian is awesome. As is Jessica. What a wounded soul Dain is. I love how Jessica healed him. It was just amazing to read a book from the man's point of view. To read all about his insecurities, not from her perspective, but from his. Top notch. Love love loved this book.
4) England's Perfect Hero - Suzanne Enoch (a reread): My only reread to make the top 10 list. (even beats out Worth Any Price for the top 10 list, but WAP is always a given *g*). I read this when I feel the urge to read something with depth, with emotion. Something I know will move me like nothing else. This is one of the most poignant, emotional, beautiful books I have ever read. I only wish that Suzanne Enoch continued to write like this.
3) To the Edge - Cindy Gerard: The first in the Bodyguard series, and also my favorite. I loved this book. Hard, edgy, taut. Tortured, studly, ex-military turned PI hero with a loving, teasing, tremendous family. Stalker storyline. You just know that Nolan is a goner the minute Jillian is introduced and holds her own against him. Did I say I loved this book? I thought this was the best of them all - and I loved them all, but something about Nolan just grabbed me. Sigh. What a yummy hero.
2) Trust in Me - Kathryn Shay: This is a deep, heartfelt look at adult life and love, problems and solutions, forgiveness, redemption and absolution. I have never read a contemporary romance that affected me more. Kathryn Shay has never disappointed me, and this one is no exception.
1) Devil in Winter - Lisa Kleypas: This book reaffirmed my trust in LK. It has a rough, unapologetically nasty hero, and a heroine that you would expect to be a pushover, who becomes unexpectedly strong. Supporting characters you care about. Like many other Kleypas fans, although I have enjoyed her recent books, I have been less than enthralled by them. With The Devil in Winter, I think she has recaptured that spark, that special something that makes her books truly noteworthy... not just another formulaic historical.
Take Me by Lucy Monroe: the best in the series. I adored Jared.
Giving Chase by Lauren Dane: fantastic book - loved it from start to finish
Forever Again - Shannon Stacey: beautiful, wonderful story
To Love a Scottish Lord - Karen Ranney: the best in the Highland Lords series; intense and emotional