2018 Favorite Reads – Sheri

“Should Old Acquaintance be forgot, and never thought upon…” Wait? What?! It’s over?? Where did this year go? This wraps up my sixth-year book blogging and I can’t believe how fast time flies by. One of my favorite end of the year traditions is taking a moment to celebrate the books that made the biggest impression on me during the past twelve months. The direction and flow of my reading may change slightly but looking back I realize how blessed I am. I find great joy and comfort slipping into the wonders of my kindle and I couldn’t do that without all of the courageous authors that continue to gift us with their stories. I believe in creating your own bit of happiness and carving out book time with my favorite, or perhaps new, author is one of the ways that I find sunshine. So to all the authors out there…thank you. Thank you for coming into my life, bringing light, and making me…happy.

In no particular order,
Here are my most treasured books from this past year…..

“Vanilla Clouds” by Roe Horvat – Last year I had a striking moment of ‘love at first page’ and I am still hopelessly in love with Horvat’s stories. Roe continues to slay me with their clever gift of saturating the pages with fierce emotions. This particular tale is like a drop of ambrosia and dipped in pure ecstasy. It is delicious and divine. If you haven’t experienced the unique style of Horvat yet, I urge you to do so. This is a heavenly place to start.  AMAZON

 

“Slide” by Garrett Leigh – I had another sublime year with Garrett Leigh. I attempted to pace myself for adequate savoring time but it was a futile endeavor. Once my journey with Pete and Ash began, I couldn’t stop. If you are in the mood for a powerful and potent story that is sure to knock you down but will lift you to places you’ve only dreamed of…Slide is everything you need. You may want to plan ahead and grab the entire series, trust me on this one. AMAZON

 

“Galaxies and Oceans” by N.R. Walker – Walker continues to secure her place on my auto-buy list. This story begins with an electrifying bite and I was hooked from the first page. Aubrey and Patrick demonstrate the healing powers of love. Their love is deeply passionate, fierce and firm, and beautifully brave. If you’re looking for swoon, eager for sexy, and wish to be captivated by a love story mapped by the stars, follow the light here. AMAZON

 

“The Story of Us” by Barbara Elsborg – This story rocked my world. But isn’t just a story…it’s an experience. This experience isn’t just moving…it’s a string of explosions. These explosions transfer from the pages…and directly hit your heart. I was overwhelmed with a tsunami of feels. Zed and Caspian will forever hold a place in my heart. This heartwrenching tale isn’t for everyone but if you’re feeling bold, prepare for turmoil and trust, hurt and healing, and limitless love. AMAZON

“Point of Contact” by Melanie Hansen – This powerful and stunning story wrung me out. Hansen has the profound ability to obliterate my heart and then slowly piece it back together again. One man brings two together and then leaves them. Trevor witnessed Riley’s first breath and Jesse witnessed his last, and this connection soothes two broken men unlike anything else. If you love your books with turbulence and a torrential downpour of emotions, this is for you. AMAZON

 

“Shattered Glass” by Dani Alexander – I am totally late to the party on this one. I would love to extend the invitation if you haven’t fallen into the rabbit hole…yet. Trust me, it’s a place you want to be. I adored both Austin and Peter. This sassy story is an elaborate journey of twists and turns. Alexander delivers a complete package of bellyaching laughs, eye leaking sniffles, foot stomping tantrums, and spontaneously combusting passion. The sequel should be coming next year and I can hardly wait! AMAZON

 

“A Chosen Man” by Jaime Reese – This series owns me. Every single time…each new couple…takes me far past my expectations. There really is no comparison. I hope they continue talking to Jaime for many more books to come because I’m without a doubt addicted. I LOVE them. This time around we have Wall and Dylan. They are very different men in a very difficult and dangerous situation…but you can’t stop love. Trust, tenacity and tender hope spark a fire between them. Their story is brimming with adrenaline, attitude, and an abundance of love.  AMAZON

“If I Should Stumble” by Claire Davis & Al Stewart – This fabulous penning duo blows me away with their words. Kaz is a refugee in the UK and he instantly stole my heart. I liked Zach but I loved that he was everything that Kaz needed. Kaz has suffered and he has suffered greatly. But now he has love, strength, and light to chase away the demons. Their story is phenomenal and Davis and Stewart marvel me with their eloquence. This is the third book of Tork and Adam and if you’re not yet acquainted, I highly suggest you do so. Then make your way to Kaz and Zack and please give them both my love.  AMAZON

“Deal Maker” by Lily Morton -I’m head over heels in love with Morton’s charming stories. I can’t get enough! Jude and Asa are larger than life. This is the second book in the series and it’s just as spectacular as the first. The writing, the humor, the flow, the balance…it’s all spot on. This story is rich in comedy, feels, and passion. It has absolutely everything I consider necessary to compose a stellar read.  AMAZON

“Bitten By the Alpha” by Annabelle Jacobs – This is a remarkable series that I simply can’t get enough of. I felt like I won the lottery when I found out Cam and Gareth were going to have their own book. Jacobs not only excels with her incredible realm but surpasses all other shifter series in my opinion. The man, the wolf, the shift…she covers it all with a masterful hand. Cam accepts his fate and allows himself to love again. It is glorious! If wolves call to you, The Regent Park pack outdoes, outruns, and outshines every other shifter series I’ve read. Seriously, you need them. AMAZON

And there you go! This completes my best of 2018 with an honor’s list of: “A Springful of Winters” By Dawn Sister, “Lucky” by Garrett Leigh, “Shades” by Jaime Reese, “Private Charter” by N.R. Walker, “Someday It Will Be” by S.A. McAuley, “Just like Heaven” by Suki Fleet, “A Love Song for the Sad Man in the White Coat” by Roe Horvat and “A Christmas Angel” by Eli Easton. I’ve found my solid circle with a few new faces and they continue to rock my world.

2018 was gone in a flash. I am grateful for the countless blessings bestowed upon me, my family, and friends. Cheers to a new and bright year! And yet again…I hope the new year brings you lots of laughter, love, and books that will…. shake any funk.

Hugs,

sheri

“Shrewd Angel” by Anyta Sunday

about

Pax Polo is the swashbuckling guitarist for Serenity Free.

Correction: Was the swashbuckling guitarist for Serenity Free.

Now he sports a black eye and his bros have kicked him out of their band—three weeks before Christmas. It’s an unfamiliar kick to his over-inflated ego, but . . . whatever.

No problem.

Thanks to some stellar eavesdropping, an unexpected angel ornament, and a bribe to open for his favorite band ever, Pax will weasel his way back into his mates’ good graces.

All he has to do is friend Clifford, the neighborhood man-shrew, for the summer. Distract him a bit so Clifford’s younger sister can sneak around.

It sounds like a piece of beginners Beethoven. Jolly good fun.

Easy.

Because, Pax totally knows how to friend people. He has heaps of friends. This shrew’s no match for his shrewd ways. Or is he?
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“Stuck with You” by Jay Northcote

about

Two clashing colleagues stuck together for Christmas–will opposites eventually attract?

Patrick has been single since he broke up with his cheating ex almost a year ago. With Christmas looming, he’s resigned to spending it alone with only memories of happier times for company. When a business trip with a co-worker leaves them stranded in the Lake District due to heavy snow, it seems Patrick will have company for Christmas after all. It’s a shame his companion is Kyle, who’s undeniably attractive, but annoying as hell.

Aware of Patrick’s reluctant admiration, Kyle basks in the attention even though Patrick isn’t the type of man he normally goes for. Averse to relationships after being hurt in the past, Kyle enjoys the occasional hook up, but has given up on seeking anything more meaningful.

Stuck together, their antagonism escalates along with a heavy dose of sexual tension until it finally ignites. What starts as a Christmas fling soon feels like something special; but will their tentative connection melt away as the snow thaws? If they’re going to take a chance on finding happiness together, they’ll have to put their differences aside and learn to trust one another.

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“A Soldier’s Wish” by NR Walker

about

The year is 1969…

Gary Fairchild is proud to be a hippie college student, and he protests the Vietnam War because he believes in love and peace. To him, it isn’t just a counterculture movement—it’s a way of life. When tickets to the Aquarium Exposition—3 Days of Peace & Music, or Woodstock, as it was better known, go on sale, there’s no way he isn’t going.

Richard Ronsman is a sheltered farm boy who lives in the shadow of his overbearing father. He’s hidden his darkest secret to earn his father’s love, but nothing is ever good enough—not even volunteering for the Vietnam War. And with just a few days left before he’s deployed, a striking hippie invites him to join them at a music festival.

Three days of music, drugs, rain, mud, and love forged a bond between these two very different men that would shape the rest of their lives. They share dreams and fears, and when Richard is shipped off to war, they share letters and love. For Richard’s first Christmas home, he is gifted a special angel ornament that just might make a soldier’s wish come true.
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“The Magician’s Angel” by Jordan L. Hawk

about

Vaudeville stage magician Christopher Fiend lives for the spotlight. His chance at big time stardom awaits him in Chicago, the next stop on the circuit after the little town of Twelfth Junction.

Edward Smith wants nothing to do with his family’s theater. Until Christopher catches his eye on opening night, then treats him to a very special performance during intermission.

When a dead body turns up in the middle of Christopher’s act, suspicion immediately falls on him. If Christopher and Edward can’t work together to clear his name, Christopher won’t make it to Chicago in time. Edward knows he shouldn’t get attached to a man who will be gone in two days, but his heart—and a very special angel—have other ideas.
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“Mr. Winterbourne’s Christmas” by Joanna Chambers

about

Lysander Winterbourne and Adam Freeman have been living happily at Edgeley Park for the last eighteen months. By day Lysander is Adam’s estate manager, by night, his lover, but neither man has spoken of their deeper feelings. Is this a happy-ever-after or just a convenient arrangement?

When the two men are invited to Winterbourne Abbey for a family Christmas, matters quickly come to a head. Snowed in at the Abbey with a house full of guests, they have to face up to shocking revelations, long-held secrets and a choice Lysander never expected to have to make…

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“Christmas Homecoming” by L.A. Witt

about

August 1939. Roger Miller and Jack O’Brien have been close since childhood. By the time they realize there’s more between them than friendship, Jack is leaving their sleepy Iowa town for college. But they console themselves knowing he’ll be home for Christmas. Right?

It is Christmas before they see each other again, but that Christmas comes six years and a world war later. Aged, beaten, and shaken by combat, they’re not the boys they were back then, but their feelings for each other are stronger than ever.

Neither know the words to say everything they’ve carried since that peacetime summer kiss, though. Even as they stand in the same room, there’s a thousand miles between them.

But maybe that’s some distance the little angel in Roger’s rucksack can cross.

The Christmas Angel series books are standalones and can be read in any order.
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“Summerfield’s Angel” by Kim Fielding

about

After the hard winter of 1888 ended Alby Boyle’s work as a Nebraska ranch hand, he returned to New York City in search of his long-lost family. His mother and brothers are nowhere to be found, however, and after Alby’s years of absence, Five Corners no longer feels like home. His prospects seem as dim as the nighttime alleys.

When Alby pauses to admire an angel ornament in a department store window’s Christmas display, he meets Xeno Varnham-Summerfield. Wealthy, handsome, and enthusiastic, Xeno brings Alby some temporary cheer. But for Alby to achieve his dreams of love and a real home, well, that may take a bit of holiday magic.
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“Christmas Angel” by Eli Easton

about

When John Trent, a dedicated member of the new Bow Street Runners, finds an exquisite carved angel floating in the Thames, he can’t stop thinking about it. He tracks down its creator, a sad and quiet young sculptor. But neither the angel nor the sculptor is done with John just yet. The blasted angel refuses to leave him be, behaving not at all like an inanimate object should.

Alec Allston is resigned to the fact that his love will ever be a river that flows out and never flows in. All he wanted to do was create a special gift so that a small part of himself could be with his unattainable and noble beloved, always. But when the gift keeps showing back up at his shop in the hands of a windblown and rugged thief-taker, Alec will need to reconsider his conviction that love is destined to remain an aethereal ideal.
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