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Thursday, December 31, 2009

My favorite books of 2009


I was very disappointed to read Mead’s announcement a few months ago that there would be no book #3 released in 2010. According to Mead, a decision had to be made and her publishers cast the final vote that the 5th ‘Georgina Kincaid’ and 5th ‘Vampire Academy’ would receive more publicity (and Mead would do more author tours to promote the books), which meant she wouldn’t have time to release 3 books in one year. To be honest, I would have been more upset by this news if ‘Thorn Queen’ hadn’t been so damn satisfying. So much happened in this second instalment – true, it finished on a serious cliff hanger that left readers dangling over the edge of a potentially explosive plot for ‘Iron Crowned’ – but there was so much Dorian/Eugenie smuttiness and such HUGE plot advances that I can forgive Mead’s decision to hold off on book 3 until she has more time to properly promote it.

Succubus Heat ‘Georgina Kincaid #4’ by Richelle Mead
She is clearly a favourite author of mine – but I have a love/hate relationship with this series. No doubt I absolutely *LOVE* ‘Georgina Kincaid’, but I *HATE* how emotionally invested I get. I don’t think I ever laugh or cry so hard when I read these books. One minute I’m chortling along after one of Georgina’s wise-cracks, the next I’m bawling my eyes out over Seth’s callous actions (or feeling furious and wanting to poke a fork through Maddie’s eye!). Never before has the emotional rollercoaster of Georgina’s life been so hellish and smutty as in ‘Succubus Heat’. It was a phenomenal read, even if the ending left me feeling a bit depressed. I went to Richelle Mead’s book signing for ‘Blood Promise’ – and I am really looking forward to book #5 ‘Succubus Shadows’ after hearing a few of her comments regarding character development.

I LOVED this book! Thankyou to Mandi at Smexy for pushing me to read it. I was a little hesitant at first because of the whole ‘Steampunk’ genre being totally foreign to me – but Carriger has written such a brilliantly fanciful and lustful supernatural story that is impossible not to love. Parasols and vampires, dirigibles and werewolves – what’s not to be obsessed about? I loved leading lady Alexia Tarabotti and her beau Lord Maccon – they were such a hot couple, they put the ‘steam’ into ‘steampunk’ and I cannot wait to read more of their adventures in ‘Changeless’ (March 30th 2010).

This was the 10th book in Armstrong’s ‘Women of the Otherworld’ series – and it went back to being about my favourite ‘Otherworld’ couple, Elena and Clay. So much has changed for these two since we last saw them in ‘Broken’, I kind of loved that while there have been books in between, Elena and Clay have been expanding their family and carrying on in their lives. ‘Frostbitten’ had a fantastic, edge-of-your-seat mystery at its centre, delved deeper into Elena’s past and included plenty of lovey-dovey scenes between Elena and Clay. But best of all, ‘Frostbitten’ revealed the depths and changes to Elena and Clay’s characters and relationship – making this my favourite ‘Otherworld’ book yet. It will be a bit of a wait until Elena and Clay take centre stage in Armstrong’s series again, but ‘Frostbitten’ well and truly tied me over until that book comes.

Patricia Briggs is one of my all-time favourite authors. My favourite thing about Ms. Briggs’ writing is her masterful character development. Briggs’s characters are flawed, damaged and just generally frayed around the edges – none more so than Charles Cornick and Anna Latham. Charles sees himself as a cold-blooded killer, and doesn’t believe he deserves his mate, Anna’s, love. Anna is a werewolf Omega still recovering from the abuse she suffered under her previous werewolf pack. Charles and Anna are mated werewolves – two slightly damaged individuals who are learning to heal with and because of each other. I love this series. To be sure it is a fantastic Urban Fantasy – and this series, more so than ‘Mercedes Thomspon’, delves into the fascinating world of werewolf politics – but at its core ‘Alpha & Omega’ is a love story. ‘Hunting Ground’ had a wonderful mystery as its central plot, but it was amazing because it delved further into Anna and Charles’s romance and explored the repair of their fractured psyches.

Bone Crossed ‘Mercedes Thompson #4’ by Patricia Briggs.
This is probably my all-time favourite Urban Fantasy series. I loved everything about ‘Bone Crossed’ – from the cover art (drool worthy by Daniel Dos Santos) to the development of Mercy and Adam’s relationship. Mercy and Adam have been in a ‘will they or won’t they?’ dance from book #1, and in ‘Bone Crossed’ their mateship was finally cemented in a fairly anti-climactic, but wonderfully romantic mating. ‘Silver Borne’ is probably my most anticipated book for 2010, mostly because I want to see how Mercy and Adam handle their newfound relationship.

Magic Strikes ‘Kate Daniels #3’ by Ilona Andrews
Oh. My. God.
That’s all I could think reading the last 2 chapters of this book. Such an amazing final battle – I was bawling my eyes out, and cheering Kate on. And that Kate/Curran tub scene – woah! It says a lot about this author-duo that their leading man and lady have still only gone as far as first base but readers are 100% hooked on their relationship. I am *dying* for book #4, the first teaser chapter has only whet my appetite and now I need May 25th to hurry the hell up.

My favourite regency romance – possibly ever. I love, love, loved this book! Again, thanks to Mandi at Smexy for recommending. The romance between naïve tomboy Lucy Waltham and stiff-upper-lip Jeremy Trescott was heart meltingly romantic. These two are such sweethearts, and even though I didn’t like the other 2 books in Dare’s series, ‘Goddess’ has made her a ‘must buy’ for me. One of the best scenes in this book occurs in a wardrobe – a wardrobe! Any author that can make a wardrobe sexy deserves to be an automatic buy.

This debut series from Molly Haper is brilliant! A comedic Urban Fantasy with one of the best and funniest leading ladies I have ever read. Jane Jameson is my hero – I want to be her BFF. Book #3 ‘Nice Girls Don’t Live Forever’ came out December 29th, but I’m still waiting for my copy – though I am sure I will love that book as much as her first two. This series has made Harper an instant buy for me – so unbelievably good, I hope Molly Harper is contracted for many more books in the series.

One of the best books I have ever read (with one of the best titles). It’s a very different post-apocalyptic zombie book – Ryan writes beautifully and vividly, and the story is edge-of-your-seat from the first page. I adored this book. It is very bleak, but Carrie Ryan is such a masterful storyteller, and the world she’s created is so fascinating you can’t help but be 100% sucked in. I could easily see this book being adapted into film – it has a very cinematic quality and an epic feel to it. Ryan has a second book (set in the same universe) called ‘The Dead-Tossed Waves’ coming out March 9th 2010 – I am definitely reading that one!

5 comments:

  1. Guess what I'm starting tonight - Succubus Blues!!!

    Soulless - Definitely top ten

    Frostbitten - I have to admit, I've only read Bitten...*cries* must catch up on this series.

    Hunting Ground - Loved this one..was a little worried after Cry Wolf, but HG took all my fears away. Really love what Charles and Anna have going on.

    Bone Crossed - Hands down fav series. Best written characters out there. I'm so glad Mercy and Adam took that next step in their relationship and hope it continues.

    Magic Strikes- You are sooo right - Everyone is invested in Curran and Kate and all we have is tension..tons of wonderful tension though. I hear things progress in Magic Bleeds..woo and hoo

    Goddess of the Hunt - Such a romantic story. (still haven't read the other two :(

    Molly Harper - OMG - Favorite new series. I just finished the third book last night - it is my fav or the series!!!! I can't wait for you to read it. I just loved it.

    Forest Hands and Teeth - Haven't read it - must change that.

    (sorry to take up a chunk of comment space ;p)

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  2. OMG I AGREE WITH EVERY SINGLE WORD YOU WROTE LOL

    i only havent read the last in this list and soulless... thought the 2nd is already here waiting lol

    loved the post!

    btw i HATE maddie lol georgina's books r such a rollercoaster of emotions lol

    xoxo

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  3. I agree with you on all! I haven't read FOHAT yet, and I did download the Dark Swan books so I'll be reading those soon. If you haven't read Rachel Vincent's werecat series I highly recommend those for you to check out (they are on my fave list). Going to get the latest Molly Harper today *squee*!

    @Mandi - can't wait to hear your thoughts - love the Succubus series!

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  4. I haven't ever read Richelle Mead. But I am headed to the RT convention in April and she is going to be there. I plan to read something by her but I don't know which series to start with. Any suggestions? I also enjoy the Mercy Tompson series and Women of the Otherworld series. They are two of my favorites.

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  5. Great list!
    Iron Kissed was one of my absolute faves of 2008. So glad you loved it as well.

    Bone Crossed, Magic Strikes and Goddess of the Hunt were on my favorites list of 2009. REALLY awesome reads.

    I've seen Soulless on quite a few year end lists. I'm going to have to check it out!

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