The first part of January also contained Smutathon, so I’m not going to talk in detail about the books I read for that Readathon here and will instead direct you to my wrap up post. So what you are going to see are the books I read from January 1-3 and the 12-15th. I had a sort of half-hearted resolution to read less this year, but I have to say, I’m not sure that’s going to work out well.
Glory in Death by J. D. Robb
I was so excited when I did my first roll for Romanceopoly and landed on Killer Crescent because I’ve really been wanting to try and read more in the In Death series. And it took an inordinate amount of willpower to wait until January 1st to start the book after my re-read of Naked in Death. But I did it! And I loved Glory in Death. It was a fascinating read trying to figure out who was killing these women that didn’t really appear to have much of a connection. Other than Roarke, of course. I do hope that’s a thing that fades–killers trying to use Roarke against Eve. But the end of this book was so good! I really liked the twist. And I adored the relationship development between Eve and Roarke. I like that Roarke is a little pushy and that Eve is skittish. I am just really liking this series so far.
The Worst Best Man by Mia Sosa
I was a little hesitant to pick request this ARC because I read Sosa’s last series and thought they were fine, but I didn’t love them. This may or may not have had to do with what I viewed as an utterly unnecessary dig at Taylor Swift, whom you likely know is my favorite person. Anyway, the point is, this book is about Brazilian American wedding planner, Carolina, who walks into a business meeting and discovers that she’s either going to have to work with her ex-fiancé who left her at the altar (Andrew) or his brother, Max, who encouraged him to leave her. Carolina is not here for this, but slowly throughout the course of the book, she starts to realize that actually Max isn’t so bad. Max, for his part, is desperate to escape his brother’s shadow and probably having feelings for his almost sister-in-law isn’t helpful for achieving that goal, but here we are. What I loved about this book was the depiction of friendship between Carolina, her cousin, and her assistant and Max’s friendship with Dean. I loved the family dynamics; Carolina has a large family and they are all quite opinionated. I loved Max and Carolina’s slow journey toward coming together. I loved (and hated because I didn’t have any) all of the food descriptions. And you’ll hopefully see more coherent thoughts in an ARC round up for all of my February 4th ARCs soon!
A Madness of Sunshine by Nalini Singh
I was so nervous starting this book because I really do not do thrillers. But Dani gifted me with an Audible credit for Christmas (thank you!!) and I decided it was time to both support Nalini and try out her new adventure. And I absolutely loved it. (Also, I’m doing a weird thing and am doing both the Sun and Moon track of Romanceopoly simultaneously because I’m a weirdo and am going to keep changing up these rules to suit my whims probably, but I read this for Killer Crescent for the Moon track.) Anyway, this is a thriller about Anahera who comes home to a small town in New Zealand after the death of her husband (this is a complicated thing). She hasn’t even quite made it into town before she meets the new police officer assigned to the town, Will. Anahera hasn’t been home long before the beautiful, young, and vivacious Miri goes missing and the whole town mobilizes to search for her. Anahera and Will grow closer throughout the course of the investigation, which is one aspect I obviously loved, but mostly I loved the gorgeous West Coast setting and how it almost feels like a character. I think this thriller moved slowly but in a way that was extremely compelling to keep reading about and just… I really loved it. I can’t wait to read her next foray into thrillers AND I’m even more excited about Alyssa Cole’s thriller now!
To read in more detail about what I read during Smutathon, please see that wrap up post, but here’s a quick list so you know if you’re interested:
Repeat by Kylie Scott – 3.5 stars
Forbidden Promises by Synthia Williams – 4 stars
Top Secret by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy – 3 stars
Temporary Wife Temptation by Jayci Lee – 3 stars
Blame It on the Billionaire by Naima Simone – 4 stars
The Wedding Party by Jasmine Guillory – 4.5 stars
The Rogue of Fifth Avenue by Joanna Shupe – 5 stars
During the same time period, but not for the Readathon, I also reread Heart of Obsidian and Shield of Winter by Nalini Singh. I still think it’s hilarious that when I first read Heart of Obsidian, it was probably my least favorite of the series and now I adore it so, so much. And Shield of Winter is really where my love of the Arrows was cemented, which has me so unbelievably excited for Alpha Night!
Other than those re-listens, at the moment I’m just in the middle of a half dozen books, relatively seriously. I’m reading The One Who Stays by Toni Blake because I got an ARC of book three in the series (out January 28th) and I felt the need to start from the beginning, Making Up by Lucy Parker, Immortal in Death by J.D. Robb, Small Change by Roan Parrish, and Fated by Rebecca Zanetti because I have an ARC of the upcoming book in the series (out January 21st) and wanted to get a feel for the world. Maybe I’ll finish a book again eventually instead of just starting and getting about halfway through and then stalling out? We’ll see.
Anyway, so far this year, my favorite book is The Rogue of Fifth Avenue by Joanna Shupe and I’m pretty sure it’s going to make it on my end of year list. What about you? Any stand outs so far?