Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Year in Review Best of 2019 part 2 New Releases

Best Reads of 2019
New Releases

Rebecca - 
This is my favorite time of year when I get to reflect on all the great books I read last year. It's super satisfying when the good out ways the bad. It reconfirms that even when it's difficult to choose what to read next my gut instincts rarely fail me. I'm also really lucky to be surrounded by friends with impeccable taste so their recommendations are almost always solid.

Before I dive into my New Release list I have to recommend my all-time favorite which I reread this year as a group read. And I made Jackie read it too. It's a throwback but it's timeless. Be warned you will need a box of tissues. After this story, you will understand the term "Ugly Cry", it does deal with difficult topics so if you have triggers proceed with caution. This is one I think everyone should read.

Breathe by Amber Lacie (Contemporary)
Breathe, Pretty, Indigo
*Each of the books above is a standalone. Pretty (Dark Contemporary), Indigo (Rom-Com)

A Coming of age love story of life long friendship and second chances.

Sometimes love is fated in the stars. You know you are destined for each other. Your souls entwine and you can’t imagine your life without them.

Sometimes it’s found when you’re not looking for it. It peeks around the corner when you least expect it, sweeping you off your feet, carrying you off into the sunset.

Sometimes, there are a lucky few who get to experience both. I was one of the lucky ones.

Top 10 New Releases 2019(Book or Series):

Honestly, I picked this series up because of all the buzz, I had to see what all the hype was. I must say it's all true! The storyline is unique and pulls you in from page one. Her characters though troubled and vulnerable are strong and resilient. 
They grip your heart.

Rich Boys of Burberry Prep Series by C. M. Stunich (RH/HSB) 3/27
Filthy Rich Boys, Bad Bad Blue Bloods, Envy of Idols, In the Arms of the Elite
This was one of Jackie's recommendations! If she says to read something you should listen...
The Burberry Prep Series is by far the best bully story I've read to date! Everything I read from this point on will be measured by these books. It grabs you from page one and draws you into their world. These characters are fierce! You never know who can be trusted. Dang the Bad Boys!!!

All Saints High Series by LJ Shen (HSB) 4/26
I mean it's L.J. Shen what more do you need to know right?! I crumbled under the peer pressure on this one. While I've read a handful of her books and loved them this one wasn't on my radar. But... the Noise was LOUD! Now I know why.
The characters in this series are the kind you hate to love and love to hate. They stole my heart and made me want to go back and read the original series Sinners of Saint. I am very much looking forward to the next book.

Raleigh Rebels Series by Callie Hart (HSB) 4/27
Rebels of Raleigh High, Revenge at Raleigh High, Reckless at Raleigh High - Coming Soon
I totally did not see that coming!!!
I kept seeing this one in the also read list so I decided to give it a chance. Book 1 shot this right to the top ten list and I haven't even finished the series yet! I think this one is going in the dark pile. It has some serious triggers but it is heart-pounding!

Boys of Oak Park Prep Series by Callie Rose (RH/HSB) 5/20
Savage Royals, Defiant Princess, Broken Empire
This series is infuriating on so many levels! I think I want revenge as much as the MC. I'm almost glad I found them after the series was completed I might have gone crazy if I had to wait to finish this story! I really hated saying goodbye to these characters. I would love to see a spin-off of their college years.

Adamsons All-Boy Academy Series by C. M. Stunich (RH/HSB) 5/24
The Secret Girl, Ruthless Boys, Forever Crew - Coming 1/10
I think my family thought I had lost my mind while I was reading this one. It left me pacing and mumbling incoherently when I finished book one.
 Totally unique plotline. Filled with mystery and suspense. Lots of laughs from the great banter. A great twist on the typical HSB trope. It kinda gives me a Pretty Little Liars vibe. If Cliffhangers are an issue for you then you might want to wait for book three to release before you dive in.

Ryderville High Elite Series by Siobhan Davis (Dark HSB) 6/10
Cruel Intentions, Ruse, Twisted Betrayal, Sweet Retribution
This one fed my compulsion to collect book boyfriends. #TeamWhyChoose
 This series is an edge of your seat read. I loved it from beginning to end. The plot was unique and intriguing. Twists and turns all the way through. Characters that you can't help but love and root for and not just the MC's... This series was my first experience with this author and I am hooked.

Royal Hearts Academy Series by A. Jade (HSB) 8/20
Cruel Prince, Ruthless Knight - 1/20, Wicked Princess - 8/18
Are there any authors that you just blind click no matter what it is? I love all things Ashley Jade I would read her grocery list. You never know what you're gonna get because she makes up her own rules. 

Truly unique Bully Standalone! Book 1 left me speechless and I had to really digest what I read. I was totally in my feelings, in awe, heartbroken, angry, 1000% in love. I'm still nursing a serious case of love-hate for Ashley after this.

Diamond in the Rough Series by Rebel Heart (HSB) 8/22
Play With Me, Claiming MePromise Me, Stay with Me, Don’t Follow Me
That was not what I expected at all going in.
Have you ever read a book that made you want to fight?
It brought the mama bear out in me!

I am enjoying this series it is bully but the storyline is unique.  It's a story about how hurt people, hurt people. About how young adults struggle through difficult situations. How love can heal and pull you through the darkest of times. There are plenty of characters to hate and the handful that you can't help but love. It's an easy read, it flows really well. Trigger Warning.

The Havoc Boys Series by C. M. Stunich (RH/HSB) 11/9
Havoc at Prescott High, Chaos at Prescott High - Coming Soon
Yup, it's true I'm a sucker for bad boys...
The cover alone is intriguing and beautiful. This is another epic story from this author. It is a bit darker than Burberry Prep & Adamsons Academy, it's rough & gritty. But H.A.V.O.C. damn! This Author writes amazing multidimensional characters that grab you and won't let go. #HAVOCGIRL #WhyChoose

Honorable Mentions:
I thought I was ordinary Rory Franco: college student, artist, and over-protected daughter. Then mages barge into my family’s home, murder my parents, and whisk me off to a university known to the rest of magical society as Villain Academy.

It turns out I’m Persephone Bloodstone, the long lost heir to one of the five royal families of dark magic. I’m destined to learn how to manipulate the world with fear—and to stand beside the four other scions: the scorching-hot, arrogant young men who rule this school.

Unfortunately, I’m having trouble locating my supposedly wicked skills. I don’t want to use a power that feeds off people’s pain, but I have to tap into my talents fast if I want to survive. I’ve got no time to grieve for my family. The students here are even more vicious than the teachers, and my fellow scions are worst of all.

The four of them crush anyone who doesn’t kowtow. No way will I bow to any villain, no matter how brutally alluring. They can turn on the charm or tear me down, but they can’t break me, even if I can barely get my magic working.

They’ve never met anyone like me before. I don’t care about ruling. I just want to avenge the people I loved.

It doesn’t matter what kind of power runs through my veins. I’m taking Villain Academy down.

*Cruel Magic is the first in a university-age paranormal academy series. Expect magical villainy, a tough heroine who bends to no one’s will, a dollop of steam, and a slow-burn enemies-to-lovers reverse harem romance where there'll be no choosing required.*

Trinity Academy by Michelle Heard (NA/College) 8/31
Falcon, Mason, Lake
Falcon Blurb:
Wealth and power make them untouchable.
The monarchs of Trinity Academy.

Falcon Reyes.
With a sharp, intelligent look, he reeks of arrogance wrapped in an icy layer of indifference.
A life of luxury has left him with the notion that everything is attainable.
Power. Wealth. Status.

He’s a god and I a mere mortal.
He’s Jupiter, and I am Mercury.
There’s so much power in this man.
He has the kind of influence most people can’t even begin to imagine.

And me… I’m an eighteen-year-old girl who managed to make him lose control.
I’m the girl who showed him there’s a kaleidoscope of colors outside the high walls of his black and white world.

Please note:
Falcon is Book 1 in The Trinity Academy Series.
All 3 books are interconnected, and some plots are carried over to the next 2 books in this series.

1. Havoc (Rise of the Iliri book 9) by Auryn Hadley
(RH/Epic Fantasy)

The world has waited a long time for the Kaisae—Salryc Luxx, leader of the iliri and commander of the allied forces. Kaisaes before her have died or gone mad. But now that they are so close to finally winning the war and finding peace for her species, either option is unthinkable! She's still needed. The war is yet to be won, and now there’s a coup brewing at home in Anglia.

As Sal prepares for a crucial push into enemy territory, the biggest battle her country faces isn't about destruction; it's about the rebuilding that comes after. If they want this war to matter, their new citizens will need to remember what it means to be iliri: to make packs, have children, and find the remains of their culture. They’ll need to make a home, and do it together—all three species: iliri, graouri, and humans. Although Sal is battling personal issues almost as large as her military battles, like the fact that no Kaisaes live into a happy old age. They either die fighting—or they go insane.

The newest member of Sal’s pack, Ryali, has been recruited to research the creation of the iliri species in the hope of discovering the reason Kaisaes have historically lost touch with reality—and hopefully she can find a way to make sure it doesn't happen to Sal. But she’ll need more than old books to help. Luckily, there’s an answer—and Sal’s newly-expanded four-mate harem is determined to save her. It looks like they’re going to need a much bigger tent.

It’s the final stretch of Auryn Hadley’s Rise of the Iliri series, and in this ninth installment, heart-stopping military action-adventure in battle is blended seamlessly with enough heady, complex sociopolitical commentary to delight both fantasy and science fiction readers—not to mention the steamiest of love scenes, sure to excite reverse harem romance fans.

A Song of Ice and Fire’s beloved fantasy author George R.R. Martin once mused that he wished Tolkien had written more about what happens after the great war is won: How do the people move on? What of famine and flood? What happens next? Both Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones epic fantasy fans will find clever explorations of these questions here.

For those who haven’t yet tried this series, now’s the time! It’s epic science fantasy at its pulse-pounding best, with a female protagonist sure to touch your heart—and win it—with her inspiring blend of compassion and strength. It’s also a searing-hot reverse harem fantasy romance—because it has to be. Not only is that the iliri way, but in any society, Sal would be too much woman for only one man.

Like in all of the Rise of the Iliri novels, this epic fantasy story focuses on loving relationships, platonic and romantic, with a steamy reverse harem theme. Sal’s erotic love scenes with her four male mates are explicit and almost unbearably titillating, although not for all readers—especially humans under eighteen.

2. Cruel Prince by Ashley Jade

Welcome to their kingdom...
I never thought I'd step foot in Royal Manor again.But four years later, here I am...back to finish my senior year at Royal Hearts Academy.
And forced to face Jace Covington.
My first friend. First crush. First kiss.The one I left behind.
Only—he isn't the same boy I gave my heart to.
This new Jace is as cruel as he is gorgeous.And he's determined to make my life a living hell.Along with the rest of his glorified family and crew of tyrants.
They expect me to worship the ground they walk on like everyone else, but I'd rather eat dirt.
If Jace Covington wants me gone...he'll have to try harder.Because I've never been the kind of girl to play by the rules.

WARNING: Royal Hearts Academy is a New Adult/High School series of standalones filled with drama, a touch of angst, and boys who are bad to the bone.This series is recommended for mature readers due to graphic language and sexual content.

3. Burberry Prep series by CM Stunich
Break the new girl.
That should be easy, right?Trash like her doesn’t belong at Burberry Prep.No, Marnye Reed is going down, and we plan to make a spectacle out of it.Let’s see who can make her fall in love first.Bet’s on. Any takers?
Take on the filthy rich boys.They’re the idols of the school, veritable gods on earth.Old Money. New money. A rising star.These guys are nothing like the ones at my old school.I might come from nothing, but I’m determined to be someone, and I won’t let them get in my way.

They say they’ll make my life a living hell; I think they mean to keep that promise.

***FILTHY RICH BOYS is a 97,000 word reverse harem/mature high school bully romance novel. This is book one of four in the series. Contains foul language and sexual scenes; any sex featured is consensual.

4. Crew Princess (Crew Series book 2) by Tijan
(YA Contemporary)
Being crew is walking between two worlds.
One world is normal: Prom. Parties. College.Those are the concerns they worry about.
In our world, we deal with other situations.
Cops. Drugs. Brawling.
That’s a typical day for us.
But what if it wasn’t?
What if there came a day when you stopped?
When you considered letting your enemies win?
When you didn’t fight back?
When you chose a different path?
First I lost my family. Then I got the Wolf Crew.
I couldn't lose them too.
But what happens when Cross, Zellman, and Jordan keep going…
...and I don’t?

5. Brayshaw series by Megan Brandy
A Top 15 Amazon Bestseller
# 1 in New Adult

In the world of morally corrupt teenagers, only the strongest survive ...

From USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author Meagan Brandy comes an enemies-to-lovers, New Adult romance full of morally corrupt and power-driven teenagers.
"Girls like you aren't exactly welcomed at a place like this, so keep your head down and look the other way."

Those were the exact words of my social worker when she dropped me in my newest hellhole, a place for "troubled teens".

I didn't listen, and now I'm on their radar.

They expect me to play along in their games of hierarchy, to fall in line in the social order they've deemed me fit.

Too bad for them, I don't follow rules.

Too bad for me, they're determined to make sure I do.

Inconceivably attractive and treated like kings...these are the boys of Brayshaw High.
And I'm the girl who got in their way.

(Dark Bully)


“Love is savage, love is blind, love is something they may not find…”
Once upon a time, there was a young girl who lived in a battered trailer, a girl from the wrong side of the tracks.

One day, she fell down The Elite Kings’ rabbit hole. Sucked into a dark vortex of lies, hate, and deceit, and spat out by money, glitz, and power.

There were things this little girl didn’t know, things she was about to find out and secrets that have been kept from her. Those secrets were guarded by the boys that were about to smash her world open and tear it all apart…

He may be a Malum, but she is a Stuprum, born into this world but neglected by the choice of her mother. Her eyes may not glisten with stars, but they roar with fire, and when she finally reaches her peak, it’s that same fire that will burn.

Them.All.Down.My name is Tillie Stuprum, and my story is not like the rest.

Everything she thought she knew is a fabricated version of the truth. I’m Nate Riverside-Malum, the one your girl whispers about to her friends and whose initials are scratched down your back. Her story is not like the rest of them, because her story is dead.

7. Peyton's Path (Fighting Fate #2) by SM Oliver
Before fate found me, I was alone, lost, and struggling to find my path. Love was something I thought I’d never find. Family wasn’t something I thought I’d never have. Now that it’s all before me, unfolding and leading me forward, I would do everything in my power to keep what fate has given me.
Walking this path has its roadblocks, mostly from people who want to throw me off. But I’m not going to let them win. Unfortunately, fate seems to be asking for something more from me, and this time I’m not going to follow it. I’m gonna fight it with everything I have.***Peyton’s Path is a Contemporary Reverse Harem. This book contains some triggering content of abuse that may be sensitive to some readers. ***

8. Ryderville High Elite Series by Siobhan Davis

In the power struggle between two elite groups, one feisty girl will bring them to their knees…

Life is a cruel game where only the most ruthless survive. It’s a truth my mother rebelled against, and she paid for it with her life. Now, I play their game. Publicly accepting the destiny that lies in wait for me when I turn eighteen.

But, behind closed doors, I plot my escape.

Trent, Charlie, and my twin, Drew, rule the hallways of Rydeville High with arrogance and an iron fist. I execute my role perfectly, hating every second, but they never let me forget my place in this world.

Everyone obeys the rules. They have for generations. Because our families have always been in control.

Until Cam, Sawyer, and Jackson show up. Throwing their new money around. Challenging the status quo. Setting hearts racing with their gorgeous faces, hot bodies, and bad boy attitudes.

Battle lines are drawn. Sides are taken. And I’m trapped in the middle, because I made a mistake one fateful night when I gave my V-card to a stranger in a blatant F you to my fiancé.

I thought it was the one thing I owned. A precious memory to carry me through each dark day.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Because the stranger was Camden Marshall, leader of the new elite and my perpetual tormenter. He hates me with a passion unrivaled, and he won’t be the only one. Fire will rain down if the truth is revealed, threatening alliances, and the power struggle will turn vicious.

My life will hang in the balance.

But I’ll be ready, and I’m not going down without a fight.

Due to mature content and themes this book is recommended to readers aged eighteen and over. This is a full-length novel, 106k words, and it's book one in a planned trilogy. 
It cannot be read as a standalone and ends with a cliffhanger.

9. TEMPT the Hookup (Tempt Series #3) by Natasha Madison

Getting pregnant after a booze cruise hookup was not what any parent wanted to hear, so I picked up my entire life and moved to Paris to start over. Six years later, I was ready to go home.

I was a single mom and the only thing I knew about my son’s dad was his name—Luca. I didn’t need to know anything else.

The universe had other ideas because on our second day back home, the man came crashing back into my life.

LucaAttending a welcome back party for my boss's daughter wasn’t how I wanted to spend my Sunday. But walking in and seeing my hookup from a cruise six years ago knocks me on my ass.

It was a weekend of fun and now I'm seeing a pair of eyes, identical to mine, staring right at me. The boy standing next to her is my son.

Now we’re living next door to each other and attempting to co-parent something that would be easy to do if the pull that brought us together wasn’t still there making things more complicated.

For six years she haunted my dreams, now she's haunting my every waking moment.I let her get away once, now I want to make her mine.

This time, permanently.

Only one thing left to do. I have to tempt the hookup.

10. My Solace Bewitched & Bewildered book 11) by Alanea Alder


For thousands of years Oron Vi’Eirson has lived each day trying to keep the pain and devastation caused by his family from hurting his precious baby brother. But despite his best efforts his past has come back to haunt him, placing not only Darian and Amelia in harm’s way, but also his newly found mate.

Isabelle Campbell, or as she likes to be called, Izzy, is a mess. She knows this. It’s never intentional, but somehow her curiosity always seems to run away from her. When her latest gaffe lands her homeless and fired from her favorite barista job she is left little choice but to accept the kindness of some of her favorite customers, little did she know that by doing so, she would find herself starting the biggest adventure of her life!

With kindred spirit Meryn at her side, Izzy takes on the entire fae city to protect the heart of the kindest man she has ever met. If the golden fae think they can get away with hurting her mate, they are sorely mistaken. After all, her new friend likes to electrocute people.

When facing your greatest fear means facing your family, is there any escape? Can Izzy help Oron stand against all odds?

Code-10 (Rock Point book 4) by Freya Barker
Romantic Suspense 
As a forty-one-year-old mother of three boys, working two jobs, Marya Berger doesn’t have the time or energy to consider a relationship. Especially after a lifetime of poor choices in the romance department. But when the disappearance of a young boy strikes a little too close to home, and a younger man she’s tried to ignore offers his help, she doesn’t stand in the way.

Single father, Dylan Barnes, the junior member of the La Plata County FBI team at thirty-three, has his focus firmly on his job and his son, Max. He’s certainly not looking to complicate his life, when he finds himself at his son’s soccer game, sitting beside the spirited brunette he can’t get out of his mind. Fate, however, appears to have different plans.

When an unspeakable crime draws the attention of the FBI, Dylan finds himself torn between his job and his instinctive need to protect Marya and her boys.

The Last Second (A Brit in The FBI Book 6) By Catherine Coulter
Political Thriller 
From New York Times bestselling authors Catherine Coulter and J.T. Ellison comes a riveting thriller pitting special agents Nicholas Drummond and Michaela Caine against a private French space agency that has the power to end the world as we know it.

Galactus, France’s answer to SpaceX, has just launched a communications satellite into orbit, but the payload actually harbors a frightening weapon: a nuclear bomb that can trigger a massive electromagnetic pulse (EMP).

When the satellite is in position, Galactus’s second-in-command, Dr. Nevaeh Patel, will have the power to lay waste to the world with an EMP. A former astronaut, Patel believes she is following the directions of the Numen, aliens who saved her life when she space-walked outside the International Space Station. She is convinced that with the Holy Grail, just discovered by the owner of Galactus—eccentric treasure hunter Jean-Pierre Broussard—she can be reunited with the Numen, change the world’s destiny, and become immortal with them.

The countdown has begun when Special Agents Nicholas Drummond and Michaela Caine are thrown into the pending disaster. They must stop the EMP that would wreak havoc on communication and electronic systems on Earth, resulting in chaos and anarchy.
With their signature “nonstop action with enough realism to keep you thinking and scare the daylights out of you at the same time” (Suspense Magazine), Coulter and Ellison have created a thriller to take you on a breakneck and breathtaking journey.

Romantic Suspense 
Still angry over the death of the woman he loved, rancher Marshall Boyer wants nothing to do with women or love. But when the mysterious Emma drops into his life—barefoot, broke, and running scared—he can’t let her go.
Artist Emmaline Katz has a dangerous secret. After escaping a ruthless criminal who exploited her for years, her quest for freedom crashes to a halt in rural Montana. Out of money and options, she finds an unlikely haven with a handsome cowboy. But no matter how much she wants to believe his offer of protection, he doesn’t know the truth about her, her secret, or the man who will stop at nothing to get her back.

Time is running out. A cold-blooded killer has come to town, and Emma isn’t the only target.

All Fired Up (Road to Love book 3) by Lori Foster
Romance/Romantic Suspense
He’s tantalizing trouble she can’t resist…
Charlotte Parrish has always wanted a certain kind of man: someone responsible, settled, boring. Bad boys need not apply. But when her car leaves her stranded and a mysterious stranger with brooding eyes and a protective streak comes to her rescue, she can’t deny how drawn she is to him. In town searching for family he’s never met, Mitch is everything she never thought she wanted—and suddenly everything she craves.

Finding his half brothers after all these years is more than Mitch Crews has allowed himself to wish for. Finding love never even crossed his mind…until he meets Charlotte. She’s sweet, warmhearted, sexier than she knows—and too damn good for an ex-con like him. But when his past comes back to haunt him, putting Charlotte—and the family he’s come to care for—in danger, Mitch isn’t playing by the rules. He’s already surrendered his heart, but now he’ll risk his life.

KPD Motorcycle Patrol Book 2
Romantic Suspense 
Piper Mackenzie first sees him shirtless, standing in front of the military plane she was about to board, with one rather large wrench in his hand. The fact that he has the plane—the one that she’s about to be flying on for hours—in pieces only minutes before she’s set to take off on it doesn’t faze her. At least not until a flippant joke about dying in mid-air leaves his lips.

The second time she sees him, he’s helping her from the wreckage of her car. The wreckage that he helped cause.

The third, he’s laying across from her in the same bed, and there’s no denying what happened the night before.

The fourth, well that time would be the first of many. Being Mrs. Jonah Crew has a nice ring to it, doesn’t it?


Jonah Crew saw her for the first time as she stared at him in awe. It was snowing, the temp was in the negative degrees, and he couldn’t think about anything but her and the look of horror on her face when he tells a badly-timed joke.

The second time he sees her, his heart skips a beat, but not for the reason that one might think. Mainly, it’s due in part to the fact that his truck smashed into her car so hard that his chest hits the steering wheel and his heart decides to stop working right.

The third time, he’s fairly positive that he’s died and gone to heaven. At least, that’s what waking up next to a beautiful woman like her signifies, right?

The fourth? Well, he’s not quite sure how he got there, but he’s already said ‘I do’ so what’s a guy to do?

This year I have read a record number of books. I've binge-read many great series. A lot of them by new to me authors, some by old favorites. But there are probably more I didn't get to than I actually read. I pride myself on the diversity of my taste in books. Yet it seems this year I got swept away with a new genre. It's opened up a whole new world for me. - Rebecca 💕

Have you read any of the books I've mentioned? 
If so what were your thoughts?
What were your favorite new releases this year?
Comment below and share your reading journey.
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Thanks for coming back for part 2. 
Be sure to come back for Year in Review Best of 2019 part 3

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*Some of the books in this post can be read for free
with Kindle Unlimited

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Year in Review Best of 2019 part 1