If nothing else, this year was decent for reading. Even though I took time off of reviewing, I remained a pretty strict rater. Not a lot of books made 5 stars for me this past year. Nonetheless, I enjoyed reading more by not forcing myself to do any challenges, not pushing myself to review anything, and just going with whatever my mood called for. I am a mood reader and I must accept that and stop forcing myself to into any reading boxes.
In no particular order, here are my favorites from 2020:
I’m almost done with Dune Messiah, I plan to finish it tomorrow night, and I am just going to go ahead and name my top two books of 2020 as such:
September proved to be a busy little beaver of a month. October is looking much the same. I did manage to squeeze in 2 books for September. (I probably could have fit another in but with a planned trip in our near future, I didn’t want to start anything quite yet.)
4 out of 5 stars – I FINALLY caught up on this duology thanks to my BFF. I thoroughly enjoyed myself until the end, in which they had to do something to royally piss me off. Not in a bad ending way, just something I did NOT want to happen. This didn’t quite feel like an ending to me though. I feel like the author could easily pick up the story again and add onto it as she felt necessary.
3 out of 5 stars – The world building and even some of the characters were actually very promising and could have possibly kept me going with the series. However, this is one of those series where each book is based on a different couple and those just tend to lose me. LOTS of cheesy sex descriptions in this one. Throbbing members and molten cores and what not.
I’m hoping to post more in October. It’s my favorite month of the year and I had fun posting weekly updates last year. The intention is there to do this, now hopefully will power follows through. It’s 2020, I just can’t promise anything. 😛
We’re off to spend a few days for bow season with my dad. I’m so excited to get away I can barely flocus at work. :3
Three books is far better than the 1 book I read all of July. 😛
What can I say of August? Not a whole hell of a lot really. I’m ready and willing to head straight into autumn now thank you.
The first weekend in September will have me seeing my BFF FINALLY after 5 months of not seeing her other than on FaceTime.
By the way, I highly recommend drinking and FaceTime weekly with your favorite friend. It is the perfect way to finish out a week.
Anywho, onto the books!
4 out of 5 stars – This was a fun comic about villains and sidekicks. Nimona was a very fun, feisty character who found her way into many shenanigans.
4 out of 5 stars – I went into this not expecting much despite all the hype surrounding it and found myself pleasantly surprised. I found some scenes a bit hard to follow but I’m not sure it wasn’t just my attention span at the time. I will check out the next book.
5 out of 5 stars – The winning book of the month. I really enjoyed my time exploring this world and learning the beginning of Drizzt. I think I may just hop directly into the next book.
I ALMOST made it all of August not buying a single book, but alas, I just had to walk by the book section of the dollar store. I’m always surprised when I find familiar books there and absolutely cannot resist picking them up. I MEAN THEY’RE ONLY $1. I haven’t even read the first book by Vic James BUT I own it and know I would be mad at myself for not picking the second book up for so cheap especially if I end up liking the series.
BOOK WYRM PROBLEMS.
What treasures have you found at the dollar store lately?
A surprising amount of reading happened in June. Granted, many of them were smaller books, they still count!
4 out of 5 stars – I actually finished this the very last day of May but I had already done my May books post. If there is a strong female lead in an urban fantasy series, you bet your sweet honey ass I’m going to give it a go. I read the first book in this series years ago and enjoyed it, but it wasn’t something I was dying to get the next book. After book two, I feel much the same. I enjoy it, I’ll pick it up when it’s on sale, but I’m not rushing to purchase the next installment.
5 out of 5 stars – I couldn’t decide what I felt like reading so Ignited Moth kindly decided for me. This book has been sitting on my TBR shelf for roughly 6 years. I am so glad that I finally made the time to read it because it was splendid. Have you ever heard me call a book ‘splendid’? Probably means you should read it ASAP.
3 out of 5 stars – During this pandemic, I decided to bring a book for lunch reading that just stays as work to lower any chance of someone putting their filthy virus hands on it. (I’ve decided on all selections being something I’m not in a rush to read.) This is an easy, peasy read that I have described as a “cozy Southern murder mystery.”
4 out of 5 stars – Not my favorite Alpha & Omega installment but I still thoroughly enjoyed myself and the drama of Bran’s disappearance was riveting, since he’s never bailed on the pack before.
Rants From the Hill (Pictured above)
4 out of 5 stars – An educational, fun essay collection from an environmentalist who lives out in the high desert of the United States. It’s a different world out there but the author manages to make it sound magical and just as important as all other ecosystems out there that have better reputations.
4 out of 5 stars – Dina is forced (kind of) to host an intergalactic summit at her inn. The inn requires guests to thrive and so she must accept a deal that no other inn on Earth would. She’s not sure she’s powerful enough to keep the peace between three warring factions from another planet, but her little dog Beast is there to help her try.
4 out of 5 stars – The inn’s latest guests are a race of aliens who have been hunted to near extinction by another close by planet. If there is one thing Dina can’t resist, it’s helping out the underdog. Not to mention, rescuing her sister and niece from a barren planet exiled from the rest of the galaxy. Just another week at the inn.
Books and coffee, the two things keeping the world go round.
I had the fabulous idea that I would post all the books that I’ve read since I took my little hiatus and…..it was quite a few more than I thought. I’m a lazy book reader now guys. This is the new program. So, I’ll just post what I’ve read throughout May. 😀
5 out of 5 stars. The Witcher series is proving to be a slow burner. The plot line creeps along but there is so much character development and political intrigue that you hardly notice until you’re finished.
3 out of 5 stars. This was enjoyable and the main character was the polar opposite of Jorg in the Broken Empire series this is an off shoot of. Call me crazy, but I preferred the dark anti-hero Jorg. I’m sure I’ll continue the series at some point, but I’m not rushing to the next book.
5 out of 5 stars. I am an Ilona Andrews addict and this new series just hits all the buttons for me. It’s an incredible world that has been built with commanding characters and adrenaline fueled adventures.
One of my bookish goals for 2020 was to purchase as few books as possible and work on my current collection. Well, Covid made that hard as hell. I can’t borrow physical books from the library OR my best friend. All things considered, I’ve only spent actual money on one book since this all happened. Otherwise my husband bought it for me or I used my Amazon giftcard.
Dragged to Hell by demons at the behest of his supposed friends, Stark has spent 11 years battling in the arenas in Hell. Instead of facing lions and bears, he faced demons and other hell beasts. He was traded from one of Lucifer’s generals to another and was just generally treated as Hell’s bitch. Now, he has snuck his way out of the pit and is more than ready to seek vengeance for both his false imprisonment and the murder of his beloved girlfriend.
The world has changed a lot in eleven years. Not only must he adapt quickly, he has to launch a game plan to get his vengeance before everyone knows he’s back. Some groups have already been tipped off to his presence and are hindering his quest. He’s a one track man though and he’ll have his vengeance, opponents be damned.
This was a fun, although not very profound, read. Stark is stubborn, yet not unfeeling despite all the torture he’s been through. He’s amiable in the face of a world against him. Literally both Heaven and Hell do their best to get in his way, but he’s picked up so many tricks in his short, violent life, that even they cannot quite catch up with him.
So if you’re looking for a good, fun vengeance story that features a hit man that escaped Hell, look no further.
This might as well have been titled: Dani: The Most Unique, Misunderstood, Better Than Everyone Else, Heroine.
Man, does this girl love talking about herself and how different she is from everyone else on the planet. I don’t care if it’s true, I don’t need to read about it relentlessly. I fully admit that the Dani books are always the hardest for me to slog through. I thought it might be a bit better because she’s an adult now but unfortunately, her mind is still very much a teenager.
I’m not even going to explain the plot, it barely moved. There was a bad guy, they take care of it all too quickly because Dani is oh so mighty and then they move on to more character “development” for Dani.
I could care less about Kat’s point of view, though I know it’s required for the minimum amount of plot movement that happens.
After all of this complaining, why I am still reading this series?
1. I have a lot of time invested in it.
2. I love a lot of the side characters.
3. The world building is great.
4. The plot line is still interesting even though it stalls in this volume.
5. It looks like Mac is back as main POV in the next book.
I’m actually giving this more stars than it deserved because I still did enjoy myself whenever Dani stopped talking about how awesome she is.
Okay, sure. I haven’t read any other books yet, but I have a strong feeling this is going to be a top contender for the whole year.
I’m not going to recap anything about this book because you just need to experience it for yourself but I will summarize it as Sons of Anarchy with hog riding half-orcs.
At first I felt bad about the comparison because I loved it so much, but there were a couple things that were almost straight from SOA. Turns out however, that’s exactly what the author meant to do. Sons of Anarchy meets Tolkien.
If you’re one of those people who are easily offended, I recommend avoiding this one like an orc plague. If you’re like me, one of those people that cusses like a sailor and is hard pressed to get offended, you’ll do just fine here.
I think one of the things I was most impressed with was the myriad of character and plot twists. I rarely guessed correctly what was going to happen next and that kept every turn of the page exciting. Every day I just wanted to come home from work and sit down with a little savagery.
In case you were not aware, this was originally a self-published book that was picked up by a publisher after it won a self-publishing contest by author Mark Lawrence. Which is just pretty cool in itself.
I want to read it again and then run out and get my filthy little quim hands on the next one.
Travel between planets is relatively easy. Therefore, aliens, werewolves, vampires, and all manner of creatures and humanoids can show up at anytime, anywhere, on any planet.
Dina Demille is an innkeeper on Earth. Inns are neutral territories. Innkeepers do their best to remain neutral so long as it doesn’t threaten their clientele. People come to them for sanctuary and protection.
Dina’s inn was once abandoned and almost decayed beyond repair. She’s been nurturing it back to health for awhile now but with only one resident, the process is slow going. With limited money coming in, she can’t provide it with all the materials it needs to rebuild itself. (The inns themselves are considered sentient by some. They have a symbiotic relationship with their keepers.) So, when trouble comes in the form of creatures killing neighborhood dogs, the local werewolf giving her attitude and warrior vampires showing up, demanding to be let in, Dina must decide whether to get involved. If she doesn’t, her inn may never earn a higher rating from the Council, which means more business, or she does and ruins the reputation herself. A bit of a catch 22. Piss off a faction of beings who can report her or have the secrecy of her inn exposed before she can make something substantial of the inn?
I enjoyed the hell out of this. It’s short, yet full of world building and action packed. I liked Dina and her little dog creature, Beast. I loved the concepts of the inns and the healthy helping of science fiction thrown in with magic. There is a possible love triangle beginning but even that cannot deter my enjoyment.
I’m always skeptical when something says it’s required reading before moving on with a series. (Also, it tends to annoy me. I don’t like when novellas become ‘required’.) In this case, it’s true. There are some relationship shake ups that you’ll have no clue about if you skip this.
Enough complaining about forced reading. (I know, I’m SO tortured. How dare someone force me to read.) This is a rather fun collection of short stories regardless. They are told from different perspectives. There is a story from Granuille and a couple from Owen, along with our MC Atticus.
Despite my bitching, I love when the short stories are about Atticus during times of historical significance and how he affected them. I think if I had to pick a favorite for this collection, it would be how he met Shakespeare and saved his life, Goddess at the Crossroads.