Welcome back to my favourite reads for 2016. With eight books to read for the Romance Writers of America RITA® Awards – none of which I can tell you about! – I didn’t manage a lot of personal reading in January and February, so it seemed more entertaining to combine the two months into one.
With all those romances to read and to keep my reading self fresh, I mainly kept away from romantic stories. A couple slipped in though. I can’t help it. The genre makes me feel warm and happy, and who doesn’t relish that?
So, of my January-February reads, title of my favourite goes to…
Named of the Dragon by Susanna Kearsley
I’m a total Kearsley fangirl. Total. The Shadowy Horses is one of my favourite reads of all time. Named of the Dragon was so gorgeous it’s challenging The Winter Sea (aka Sophia’s Secret) as my second favourite Kearsley.
Set in Wales, Named of the Dragon has everything – stunning, Gothic location, creepy old house, mystery, sibling rivalry, Arthurian legend, personal tragedy, and British village life. As with all Kearsley novels it’s beautifully written. She immerses you in the atmosphere and makes you feel the characters’ anxieties and desires deeply. I love her treatment of the romance thread too. It’s subtle but very intriguing, as is her usual way.
Loved it. Go read!
I also read:
Milan’s books are great fun and this is no exception. The Duchess War is book 1 in the Brothers Sinister series, although the novella The Governess Affair (a hoot!) is counted as a lead-in story. I’m a sucker for a wallflower character and Minerva, the heroine, was a cracker.
A short but punchy – not to mention seriously hot – read from rural romance superstar Rachael Johns (and, I had better mention, buddy of mine). Wonderfully sexy escapism in a dusty town. Great stuff.
A thriller that takes you from England to Canada to Japan to Russia and places in between. Plenty of action and some fascinating insights into everything from anthropology to shipping to the tough lives of those who reside in Siberian outposts. Completely far-fetched but I couldn’t put it down!
I adore horror novels, so I was delighted to score an advance copy of this book thanks to The Reading Room and Hachette Australia. This book is so far up my alley it could have been written for just for me. Creepy, fast-paced, fascinating and topical with the social media references. I also really liked the structure, with Jack’s narrative mixed with his brother’s and other’s. A page turner.
Oh, this book!! My second favourite read of January-February. When a story makes you feel fretful for fictional characters, the author is doing something right. Fantastic premise – Imagine if the next thriller you opened was all about you. Scary thought. Even scarier read. I devoured this tense suspense-thriller in a couple of days. Highly recommended.
AKA Bruno, Chief of Police. I’ve had author buddies nagging me for yonks to read this book, with them promising it’d be right in my zone. Was it? Yeah, baby! France, food, village life and crime. I’m a happy girl. Loved it.
By the way. if you’re looking for my December Favourite Reads post, I’m sorry to advise that it was one of the posts lost during The Great Website Meltdown of early 2016. Measures have been put in place to protect against this happening again. I hope they work. That meltdown was seriously traumatic. But to recap, my favourite read was Attachments by Rainbow Rowell. Amazing book, gorgeous hero, lovely heroine, wonderful set-up. Didn’t want it to end.
What were your favourite reads?