Best Of 2016

Dear fellow readers,

Another year has come and gone and like most of you we’ve spent a good part of it reading. With over 700 books read, below are just a few of our favorites. We hope you had a great book year and here’s to a 2017 filled with more stories, more amazing authors and lots more love between the sheets.

xoxo,

Natalie, Meagan, Mary, Christina, Julie and Cindy

 

 The one book everyone should read

It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover

Lily hasn’t always had it easy, but that’s never stopped her from working hard for the life she wants. She’s come a long way from the small town in Maine where she grew up – she graduated from college, moved to Boston, and started her own business. So when she feels a spark with a gorgeous neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid, everything in Lily’s life suddenly seems almost too good to be true.

Ryle is assertive, stubborn, and maybe even a little arrogant. He’s also sensitive, brilliant, and has a total soft spot for Lily, but Ryle’s complete aversion to relationships is disturbing.

As questions about her new relationship overwhelm her, so do thoughts of Atlas Corrigan – her first love and a link to the past she left behind. He was her kindred spirit, her protector. When Atlas suddenly reappears, everything Lily has built with Ryle is threatened.

With this bold and deeply personal novel, Colleen Hoover delivers a heart-wrenching story that breaks exciting new ground for her as a writer. It Ends With Us is an unforgettable tale of love that comes at the ultimate price.

 

Favorite New Adult Romance

Win Some, Lose Some by Shay Savage

As long as I could find a way to show her how much she meant to me, I didn’t have to worry about finding the right words.
Win. So much win!

Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas

“I want everything about you, Ryen, and I know you want me.” Her body shakes a little, and I lean in, kissing her on the cheek. “But I love the way you lie.”

Until Friday Night by Abbi Glines

“You’re it for me, Maggie. I don’t ever want anyone else.”

Wilder by Rebecca Yarros

“It’s love, Pax. It’s what some people spend their whole life searching for. Do you know what a miracle it is to love someone and actually have them love you back? You have a chance at something epic.”

 

Favorite M/M Romance

Him, and Us by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy 

Jamie Canning has never been able to figure out how he lost his closest friend. Four years ago, his tattooed, wise-cracking, rule-breaking roommate cut him off without an explanation. So what if things got a little weird on the last night of hockey camp the summer they were eighteen? It was just a little drunken foolishness. Nobody died.

Ryan Wesley’s biggest regret is coaxing his very straight friend into a bet that pushed the boundaries of their relationship. Now, with their college teams set to face off at the national championship, he’ll finally get a chance to apologize. But all it takes is one look at his longtime crush, and the ache is stronger than ever.

Jamie has waited a long time for answers, but walks away with only more questions—can one night of sex ruin a friendship? If not, how about six more weeks of it? When Wesley turns up to coach alongside Jamie for one more hot summer at camp, Jamie has a few things to discover about his old friend…and a big one to learn about himself.

 

Favorite Contemporary Romance

This is Love by Caroline Nolan

“This was not a mistake. I know what this is! You know what this is! This is love, Rachel. We are falling in love.”

Restored and The Spire by Kate Canterbary

“It’s like there’s a part of me that was wrecked for a long, long time, and you restored it. You restored me. And I want you to know how much I needed that.” ~Restored

“There are tornadoes in my head sometimes”…
“I know,” he said as his lips met mine. “But your storms, they don’t scare me.” ~The Spire

RoomHate by Penelope Ward

“Will you at least look at me when you’re talking to me?” He turned around and walked toward me slowly then leaned his face in. I could feel his words on my lips when he asked, “Is this better? You’d rather me in your face like this?”

Stuck-up Suit by Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward

“Gorgeous, arrogant, and pissed off?” 
I chuckled a little. “Yeah, that’s him.”

 

 

 Favorite Bearded Hero

Beard Science by Penny Reid

Make a deal with the devil and you might get what you want, but will it be what you need? 

Jennifer Sylvester wants one thing, and that one thing is NOT to be Tennessee’s reigning Banana Cake Queen. Ever the perpetual good girl and obedient daughter, Jennifer is buckling under the weight of her social media celebrity, her mother’s ambitions, and her father’s puritanical mandates. Jennifer is officially desperate. 

And desperate times call for Cletus Winston.

Cletus Winston is a puzzle wrapped in a mystery covered in conundrum sauce, and now he’s in a pickle. Despite being convinced of his own omniscience, extortion by the exalted Banana Cake Queen of Green Valley has taken him completely by surprise. So… what’s a maniacal mastermind to do? 

Likely, the last thing you expect.

 

 Favorite New to me author/series I wanted to live in

Study Abroad series by Jessica Peterson

“The feel of his hand on me—it’s like heaven on earth. It’s too much. It’s not enough. In the space of a single heartbeat, I know it will never be enough.”

 

 

Favorite Tearjerker 

Luka (The Rhythm, #2) by Jane Harvey-Berrick

“Love hurt. Love flayed you raw and left your skin hanging from your body in bloody strips. It left you branded and burned. Ultimately, love was the worst thing that could happen to a human being. In my opinion.”

Swear on This Life by Renee Carlino

“If you can surrender to the idea that there might be a plan, instead of reducing every magical moment to a coincidence, then love will find you. He found me.”

Sinners Creed by Kim Jones

“You’ll never have to worry about me feeling like this for anybody else, because there will never be anybody else. If what I feel for you is love, then you are what love is. And it doesn’t exist if you don’t.”

 

 

Favorite Steamy & Suspenseful

Sugar Bowl series by Sawyer Bennett

Sela Halstead lost her innocence in a way that no sixteen-year-old should ever have to endure. She’s spent years trying to forget that night even while wondering about the identities of the monsters who brutalized her—until a telltale tattoo flashes across Sela’s TV screen. The incriminating ink belongs to Jonathon Townsend, the millionaire founder of The Sugar Bowl, a website that matches rich older men with impressionable young women. Obsessed with revenge, Sela infiltrates Townsend’s world, only to come face-to-face with a tantalizing complication: Beckett North, his charismatic business partner.

The tech mastermind behind The Sugar Bowl, Beck always gets what he wants, in business and in bed. And yet, for a man who’s done every dirty thing imaginable, there’s something about the naïve, fresh-faced Sela that sparks his hottest fantasies. Because with her, it’s not just about sex. Beck opens up to her in ways he never has with other girls. So why does he get the feeling that she’s hiding something? In a world of pleasure and power, the shocking truth could turn them against each other—or bind them forever.

 

Favorite Sports Romance

Moonshot by Alessandra Torre

What do you want from me?” His eyes softened, his mouth, when it pressed to me, gentle and soft, a plea of lips against a weak soul. “Everything. I want a life with you. I want to be the father of your children. I want every second we missed and a million more. And I’ll give away the world to get it.”

Anything But Minor by Kate Stewart

“I’m not sure what you want me to think of you, Rafe.”
“I’m pretty sure I just want you to think of me, Alice.”

The Player and the Pixie by L.H. Cosway & Penny Reid

“Stop the chit-chat, Cassidy. Put the penis in the vagina and let’s get this dinner train rolling.”

 

 

Most Fun Read

Magnificent Bastard by Lili Valente

“Prince Charming is a crock of shit. Like unicorns, mermen, and other fairy tale creatures, he doesn’t exist. (…) What you need is a Magnificent Bastard, your very own one-man vengeance machine.”

 

Favorite Young Adult

The Problem With Forever by Jennifer Armentrout

For some people, silence is a weapon. For Mallory “Mouse” Dodge, it’s a shield. Growing up, she learned that the best way to survive was to say nothing. And even though it’s been four years since her nightmare ended, she’s beginning to worry that the fear that holds her back will last a lifetime.

Now, after years of homeschooling with loving adoptive parents, Mallory must face a new milestone—spending her senior year at public high school. But of all the terrifying and exhilarating scenarios she’s imagined, there’s one she never dreamed of—that she’d run into Rider Stark, the friend and protector she hasn’t seen since childhood, on her very first day.

It doesn’t take long for Mallory to realize that the connection she shared with Rider never really faded. Yet the deeper their bond grows, the more it becomes apparent that she’s not the only one grappling with the lingering scars from the past. And as she watches Rider’s life spiral out of control, Mallory faces a choice between staying silent and speaking out—for the people she loves, the life she wants, and the truths that need to be heard.

 

Favorite Dark & Twisted

Her Master’s Christmas by Lily White

Ours wasn’t a battle of will alone. It was a battle of one keen mind against the other.

Claim Me by Anna Zaires

*series MUST be read in order*

It’s not tender or pretty like I thought it would be. Some might even say it’s ugly. But it’s us. It’s our reality, our version of perfect. 

 

 Favorite Forbidden Love

Torn (Devils Wolves book 1) by Carian Cole

He’s loved me since the day I was born.
He’s taken care of me.
He’s awakened me.

Tor. My father’s best friend.
Fifteen years older than me, he’s always been my protector.
The one I should never, ever want.
But I was born to be his.

She’s always loved me.
She’s shattered me.
She’s healed me.

Kenzi. My best friend’s daughter.
I held her the day she was born, and I never let go.
She’s forbidden to me. But she’s the only one that really gets me.
We’re slowly being torn apart by everything we love.
Everything we want.
Everything we desire.

And now I want the one thing I can’t have… I want her.

 

Favorite Second Chance Romance 

Retrieval by Aly Martinez

I proposed on our first date. 
She laughed and told me I was insane. Less than a day later, she said yes.
It was a whirlwind, but we were happy… 
Until we got greedy and wanted a family.

It was a life I couldn’t give her, not for lack of trying. Fertility just wasn’t on our side. We sought out doctors and treatments. Spent money we didn’t have. Lied to our families. Smiled for our friends. Put on a brave face for a world that didn’t understand.
Finally, we were successful…
Until we were forced to bury our son.

We were left broken, battered, and destroyed.
They say love is in the details, but it was the details that ruined us.

This is the story of how I took back what had always been mine.
The retrieval of my wife and our family.

 

 2016 Automatic One-Click Authors

Full Share (Shore House, #1) by Eliza Freed

“You’re different, Nora.” 
“Does that mean fucked up?” 
“We’re all fucked up. That wouldn’t make you different.”

New Amsterdam series by Ashley Pullo

Inspired by the captivating stories from Humans of New York, and the narrative structure of a television mini-series, New Amsterdam chronicles the lives of three women defining love in New York City.

 

Best Rock Star Romance

Idol (VIP, #1) by Kristen Callihan

“You can have the world. Just reach for it.”
“I don’t need the world,” she whispers in my ear.
“What do you need?” I’ll give her anything. Everything.
“You.”

 

 

Favorite Opposites Attract

Managed (VIP, #2) by Kristen Callihan

It started off as a battle of wits. Me: the ordinary girl with a big mouth against Him: the sexy bastard with a big…ego.

I thought I’d hit the jackpot when I was upgraded to first class on my flight to London.

That is until HE sat next to me. Gabriel Scott: handsome as sin, cold as ice. Nothing and no one gets to him. Ever. He’s a legend in his own right, the manager of the biggest rock band in the world, and an arrogant ass who looks down his nose at me.

I thought I’d give him hell for one, long flight. I didn’t expect to like him. I didn’t expect to want him. But the biggest surprise? He wants me too. Only in a way I didn’t see coming.

If I accept his proposal, I leave myself open to falling for the one man I can’t manage. But I’m tempted to say yes. Because the real man beneath those perfect suits and that cool façade just might be the best thing that’s ever happened to me. And I just might be the only one who can melt the ice around his heart.

Let the battle begin…

 

Favorite Spoiled Rich Hero

Paper Princess (The Royals, #1) by Erin Watt 

“I feel the need to warn you that, we Royals are pretty fucked up. We’re good in bed, but out of it? We’re like a stage four hurricane.”

 

 

Favorite Dark Mafia Romance

Boston Underworld series by A. Zavarelli 

A dark energy crackles to life between us as I stare into those savages irises. They swirl with an intoxicating and vivid array of colors I can’t drag myself away from.

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