Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Top Reads of 2006

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.

Honorable Mentions:
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


  1. Damn. I'm going to have to find Lisa Valdez' book. Crap. Another one to add to my TBR pile.

  2. We've not talked about Kathryn Shay! I feel the same way. The emotional depth of her characters are like no other in contemporary romance. I have Trust in Me in my TBR, but I am moving it up to the top of the pile now.

    I read a Suzanne Enoch and was not impressed but it was a new one maybe in 2005. I will be looking for England's Perfect Hero now, though! I'll give her another try!

    I agree with everything else! I bet you're suprised!

    Take Care!

  3. Nikki,

    I'll loan you England's Perfect Hero. It's the 3rd in the Lessons in Love trilogy (I'll give you #2 also, I lost the 1st one somewhere), but I know you're not a series slut and you don't have to read them in order *g*. I want it back, though!!!

    And, gee, I'm shocked you love Shay. LOLOL

  4. Crap, I'm not the one who lost that book am I? By Enoch? I know I sen England's Perfect Hero back. Worried now.

    Great list; I loved most of these books. Crazy, given how much we "read alike", but I doubt there will be any crossover or duplicates on my top ten. At least not the top ten off the top of my head. Well....maybe Passion by Valdez. Yeah...and Anne? I'll send that to you.

  5. Nope, I've got it, Jen, no worries. I've lost book 1 somewhere.

    Anne, looks like you'll get 2 copies of Passion, LOL.

    Jen, I think you were just a much more adventurous reader than I was this year. I stuck with known and trusted genres, and you branched out and found some new loves :) I think I'm too stingy with my cash.

    Jen, I fixed the label issue we emailed about last night :)

  6. Awesome list, Lori. We disagree on Brockmann, but I know I'm pretty much the only one who doesn't care for her.

    Another we disagree on is Shay. I've read perhaps three or four of her books and wasn't ever impressed with them. Well, I enjoyed one or two, but one book turned me off from her. Hmm, After the Fire. I just couldn't get behind a hero who was married falling in love with a woman who wasn't his wife. Meh.

    I'm SOOO with you on the Enoch, though. LOVE that book. Bit is SUCH an amazing hero.

    Great choices, babe!

  7. Holly, Dillon wasn't married. I think you are mistaking After the Fire for a different book.

    Off to go check my list of Anne Stuarts..... someone is bound to know which book Holls is thinking of...

  8. Crap, I meant Into the Fire. So maybe you thought it was a different book, too.

  9. Aww thank you. Seriously, it always stuns me when I see stuff like this.

    OH and I love Shannon Stacy's writing too.

  10. Lori - If you already have Passion on its way to Anne, I'll refrain. *g*

    Thankfully, with our library's statewide lending system, I am getting nearly all of my titles for no money. The rest come from sharing girlfriends and my local UBS. Don't throw tomatoes...but I spent less than $100 on new books in 2006. Easily less than $100. And with that admission, authors everywhere will despise me. Ah well. That's the beauty of reading. It can be low cost for those of us who need it to be. Or for those who want to try new authors without the monetary risk.

    Thinking about Into The Fire...behind Black Ice, that is my favorite contemporary Stuart hands down.

  11. OK, I had to go look, and I wonnder if Holly isn't referring to After the Fire by Belva Plain? This book looks like the husband commits adultery and falls in love with someone else. ICK.

    Definitely NOT Into the Fire. Nope, my Dillon's heart is owned by Jamie from the time they are teenagers until the book ends. *sigh*

  12. I've got a few of these books in my tbr, so I know I've got some good reading ahead of me. :P

    I really enjoyed Into the Storm and Lord of Scoundrels too.

  13. LOL! NO! I was talking about Katheryn Shay! Not Stuart.

    This book...


    That's the one that turned me off from her. :)

  14. Ahhhhh, LOL Holly. Not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but, hey, I'm cute :)

    I remember really liking the other two books in the Fire trilogy. In fact, they were the first Kathryn Shay books I read. I wonder if I never read this one. (Obviously the title didn't make a huge impression on me *snort*)

  15. LOL! That's alright, sweets. I do that ALL the time. :)

    I have at least one of the other 2 in my TBR pile, but I just can't bring myself to read it. That one just ruined her for me.

    Though I think I read another one I liked. Street Angel or something similar??


Have you read it? What do you think?

Related Posts with Thumbnails