Hello, my lovely bookies!
Wow, another year almost gone! 2020 is starting in just a few hours and 2019 has gone so fast! I guess that is good, right? Of course, I have already enjoyed most of the Christmas break with my family and friends and I hope you all are enjoying the holidays and have an amazing start of the new year too!
As always I am here with my absolute favorite reads of 2019 and I tried to keep it short but.. I cannot do it! I loved so many books! Still, same as last year, to make it a nice number, I have chosen 15 books of the 101 that I’ve read during all these months. Of course, I will also make a list of honorable mentions because I can’t help myself to give love to these amazing creations.
Now, without further ado, besides saying a massive thank you to all of you for another fantastic year in the blogging and book community, let’s get to my 2019 favorites!
PS: Please check all my friends’ lists too! You’ll find all the links down below (I will keep updating it these days)!
TOP 15 BOOKS READ IN 2019
This list will be in in reading order, in other words, by date. However, the first book featured will not be in reading order because it was the only one that got my special 5+ star rating this year, so I guess it is my absolute favorite read of 2019. Now, let’s start the list!
BOOK RATED WITH 5+ STARS
WORK IN PROGRESS by Staci Hart
Gah, this book! Who does not love a bookworm finding the love of her life in a hot and captivating man, am I right? I just loved Tommy and Amelia together SO much.
I never thought my first kiss would be on my wedding day.
But here I stand, clutching a bouquet of pale pink roses behind the doors of a Las Vegas chapel, and at the end of the aisle is the absolute last man I imagined would be waiting for me.
Bestselling author. Notorious bad boy. Savagely handsome, dark as sin, chiseled as stone. And somehow, my soon-to-be husband.
Marry him, and I’ll land my dream job. Save him, and I’ll walk away with everything I’ve ever wanted. All I have to do is remember it’s all for show. None of it is real, no matter how real it feels.
But first, I have to survive the kiss.
And with lips like his, I don’t stand a chance.
BOOKS IN READING ORDER (4.5 OR 5 STARS)
WE SHOULDN’T by Vi Keeland
One of my top favorite books by Vi Keeland, that is for sure! An outstanding enemies-to-lovers story, full of banter, back and forth, sexual tension, emotions and a whole lot of sizzling chemistry.
Bennett Fox walked into my life on one hell of a crappy Monday morning.
I was late for the first day at my new job—a job I’d now have to compete for even though I’d already worked eight years to earn it, because of an unexpected merger.
While I lugged my belongings up to my new office, a meter maid wrote me a parking summons.
She’d ticketed a long line of cars—except for the Audi parked in front of me, which happened to be the same make and model as mine.
Annoyed, I decided to regift my ticket to the car that had evaded a fine. Chances were, the owner would pay it and be none the wiser.
Except, I accidentally broke the windshield wiper while slipping the ticket onto the car’s window.
Seriously, my day couldn’t get any worse.
Things started to perk up when I ran into a gorgeous man in the elevator. We had one of those brief mo-ments that only happened in movies.
You know the deal…your body lights up, fireworks go off, and the air around you crackles with electricity.
His heated stare left me flush when I stepped off the eleva-tor.
Maybe things here wouldn’t be so bad after all.
Or so I thought.
Until I walked into my new boss’s office and met my com-petition.
The gorgeous man from the elevator was now my nemesis. His heated stare wasn’t because of any mutual attraction. It was because he’d saw me vandalize his car. And now he couldn’t wait to annihilate his rival.
There’s a fine line between love and hate—and we shouldn’t cross it.
We shouldn’t—but straddling that line could be so much fun.
HEAT STROKE by Tessa Bailey
I just got my first taste of Tessa Bailey MM romance goodness and I want moooooore!
Marcus “Diesel” O’Shaughnessy is a brash, oversized CrossFit enthusiast with a naked lady tattooed on his rippling forearm. Jamie Prince is a private school teacher with an extremely low tolerance for bullshit. The two men have zero in common. Well, except for three things.
They’re both moonlighting as lifeguards for the summer.
No matter how hard they try, they cannot stay away from each other.
And both of them have secrets they’re determined to keep.
But what happens in the shadows of the Long Beach boardwalk can only remain hidden for so long, before the July sunshine reveals the hot, unrelenting connection they never expected, forcing Marcus and Jamie to decide if they’re simply caught up in a temporary heat stroke or if they’ve found something worth rescuing…
VICIOUS by L.J. Shen
Gah, I don’t even know how to explain Vicious and the feelings this story provoked in me. You’ll just have to go ahead and judge it yourselves. I can only say, it was angsty, addictive, mindblowing and emotional.
They say love and hate are the same feelings experienced under different circumstances, and it’s true.
The man who comes to me in my dreams also haunts me in my nightmares.
He is a brilliant lawyer.
A skilled criminal.
A beautiful liar.
A bully and a savior, a monster and a lover.
Ten years ago, he made me run away from the small town where we lived. Now, he came for me in New York, and he isn’t leaving until he takes me with him.
She is a starving artist.
Pretty and evasive like cherry blossom.
Ten years ago, she barged into my life unannounced and turned everything upside down.
She paid the price.
Emilia LeBlanc is completely off-limits, my best friend’s ex-girlfriend. The woman who knows my darkest secret, and the daughter of the cheap Help we hired to take care of our estate.
That should deter me from chasing her, but it doesn’t.
So she hates me. Big fucking deal.
She better get used to me.
THE GUY ON THE RIGHT by Kate Stewart
This novel is an outstanding new adult romance with lots of comedy, originality, a whole lot of chemistry and all the feels. Both Theo and Laney are exotic and exceptional characters that killed me with their banter, hilarious comments and chemistry.
Strike One-My mother named me Theodore after her favorite chipmunk.
Not cool, Mom.
I‘ve spent most of my life answering to Teddy, because I couldn’t make Theo work.
Except for here. College. The place where all bets are off, and I’ve managed to redeem myself.
There’s only one problem, my new roommate, Troy, is football royalty and looks like he stepped off the set of an Abercrombie shoot.
Doesn’t matter, I cook a mean breakfast for his panty parade, and we get along well.
And anyway, this year I got the girl. And she’s perfect.
That’s right. Theodore Houseman, former band geek, now marching band rock star has finally landed the girl of his dreams.
Everything is perfect.
That is, until Troy takes a good look at her.
I’m not going down without a fight. As a matter of fact, I’m not going down at all. As glorious as these days may be for my all-star roommate, Laney is my end game.
I may not know much about play strategy, but I’ve been the good guy my whole life. I’ve been listening and I know exactly what women want. Framed in a picture standing next to me, Troy may seem like Mr. Perfect, but he’s underestimating the guy on the right.
Spoiler alert: In this story, the underdog is going to win.
THE WALLFLOWER WAGER by Tessa Dare
It’s impossible not to fall in love with Penny and Gabe because together they just click. They are so different and they come from very different environments but their connection is so special and heartwarming.
They call him the Duke of Ruin.
To an undaunted wallflower, he’s just the beast next door.
Wealthy and ruthless, Gabriel Duke clawed his way from the lowliest slums to the pinnacle of high society—and now he wants to get even.
Loyal and passionate, Lady Penelope Campion never met a lost or wounded creature she wouldn’t take into her home and her heart.
When her imposing—and attractive—new neighbor demands she clear out the rescued animals, Penny sets him a challenge. She will part with her precious charges, if he can find them loving homes.
Done, Gabriel says. How hard can it be to find homes for a few kittens?
And a two-legged dog.
And a foul-mouthed parrot.
And a goat, an otter, a hedgehog . . .
Easier said than done, for a cold-blooded bastard who wouldn’t know a loving home from a workhouse. Soon he’s covered in cat hair, knee-deep in adorable, and bewitched by a shyly pretty spinster who defies his every attempt to resist. Now she’s set her mind and heart on saving him.
Not if he ruins her first.
REVEAL by K. Bromberg
After that cliffhanger in Resist, I could not wait a second to read Reveal. […] My goodness, what a roller coaster this was for these two!
The first time I met Vaughn Sanders, I knew I wanted her. Confident, intelligent, and downright sexy. I thought I knew how to play her game. I was ready and willing for the challenge. Little did I know she was full of secrets and surprises.
But so am I.
Charming a woman into my bed has never been my problem. It’s the relationship part that is. They want it. I don’t. But can you blame me? Broken marriages are how I make a living. Hell, no self-respecting man would let a woman own his thoughts, invade his dreams, and steal his heart. So how in the world has Vaughn done that to me?
I’ve fallen in love with her. There. I said it. But that acknowledgment comes with a heavy price.
Everything and everyone seem to be working against us, leaving us both to question whether what we have is worth the cost.
I’ll be damned if I go down without a fight.
DOWN TOO DEEP by J. Daniels
Get ready because reading Down Too Deep you’ll fall in love with Nate, Jenna, Marley, Oliver, Olivia and the whole Dirty Deeds crew all over again.
Following the sudden death of his wife, Nathan Bell has spent nearly two years burying himself in work and neglecting his biggest responsibility: his daughter. Overcome with guilt, he wants to connect with little Marley, but he doesn’t know how to do it alone. And then Jenna Savage throws him a lifeline.
A single mom of twins, Jenna is more than capable of taking care of Nate’s adorable two-year-old, and wants to help Nathan however she can. Soon, attachments are made, forcing Jenna and her kids into new territory. And the closer everyone becomes, the more right it feels.
Falling in love forces Nathan to face his biggest fear, and when hearts, both big and little, are on the line, the only thing scarier than needing someone is losing them all.
GETTING PLAYED by Emma Chase
I mean, a hot math’s professor / drummer falling for a single mom / lifestyle blogger? I was all over it from the very first page to the very last one.
Dean Walker is all about keeping life simple. He’s effortlessly talented and intelligent—spending his summers playing drums in the local band and the rest of the year teaching high school in the same Jersey town where he grew up. He likes his love-life simple too, enjoying the commitment-free hook-ups his good looks and sexy charm have always made oh-so easy.
Then he meets Lainey Burrows. And his simple, easy life gets turned upside down.
One wild one-night stand was all it was ever supposed to be, so Lainey is shocked when she discovers that her sizzling summer fling is also her son’s new math teacher. But that’s nothing compared to the most unexpected twist of all—their hot hook-up left Lainey knocked-up, and now they’re about to become parents. Together.
What ensues is an addictive, insatiable, sweet and tender romance that won’t be simple, but it will be more than worth the fight.
A LIE FOR A LIE by Helena Hunting
I am sure fans of the Pucked series will enjoy how Helena has linked this new series to those beloved books. And I am sure you’ll also fall in love with RJ, Lainey and the new crew because they are just as amazing: hilarious, smart, sexy and nerdy!
Sometimes I need an escape from the demands, the puck bunnies, and the notoriety that come with being an NHL team captain. I just want to be a normal guy for a few weeks. So when I leave Chicago for some peace and quiet, the last thing I expect is for a gorgeous woman to literally fall into my lap on a flight to Alaska. Even better, she has absolutely no idea who I am.
Lainey is the perfect escape from my life. My plan for seclusion becomes a monthlong sex fest punctuated with domestic bliss. But it ends just as abruptly as it began. When I’m called away on a family emergency, I realize too late that I have no way to contact Lainey.
A year later, a chance encounter throws Lainey and me together again. But I still have a lie hanging over my head, and Lainey’s keeping secrets of her own. With more than lust at stake, the truth may be our game changer.
DIRTY LETTERS by Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward
Vi Keeland and Penelope Ward just keep getting better. This incredible duo have written another unique love story that is now surely one of my top favorites by them.
I’d never forgotten him—a man I’d yet to meet.
Griffin Quinn was my childhood pen pal, the British boy who couldn’t have been more different from me. Over the years, through hundreds of letters, we became best friends, sharing our deepest, darkest secrets and forming a connection I never thought could break.
Until one day it did.
Then, out of the blue, a new letter arrived. A scathing one—one with eight years of pent-up anger. I had no choice but to finally come clean as to why I stopped writing.
Griffin forgave me, and somehow we were able to rekindle our childhood connection. Only now we were adults, and that connection had grown to a spark. Our letters quickly went from fun to flirty to downright dirty, revealing our wildest fantasies. So it only made sense that we would take our relationship to the next level and see each other in person.
Only Griff didn’t want to meet. He asked that I trust him and said it was for the best. But I wanted more—more Griff, in the flesh—so I took a big chance and went looking for him. People have done crazier things for love.
But what I found could change everything.
OUTMATCHED by Kristen Callihan and Samantha Young
That is what I call an outstanding and smart romance! Kristen and Samantha’s writing just clicked together and that turned out to be exactly what I expected. A romance full of banter, sexual tension, chemistry and emotions.
What happens when a boxer finds chemistry with a geek?
Parker Brown can’t believe she needs to hire a fake boyfriend. When she landed her dream job in renewable energy, she thought she’d be entering a world at the forefront of progressive thinking. But the head boss prefers to promote employees who are “settled.” Thankfully, she’s found the perfect candidate, a fellow intellectual looking for some quick cash. What Parker gets is his protective big brother—Rhys Morgan. The tall, muscled ex-boxer with a foul mouth shows up just as her boss does, and now she’s stuck with the manipulative jerk.
Responsibility weighs heavily on Rhys. Now permanently out of the ring, he’s trying to hold together his late father’s gym and keep his younger brother, Dean, on the straight and narrow. To save Dean from himself, Rhys takes his place, ready to give this society girl a piece of his mind. Instead, he finds an opportunity. Even though they can hardly stand each other, posing as Parker’s boyfriend is a win-win deal. She gets to keep her job, and he’ll charm her star-struck boss into sponsoring his gym.
Problem is, they can barely keep their hands off each other. And what started as an easy deal isn’t so easy anymore. Because what future can a rough ex-boxer, afraid to open his heart, and a polished society geek, who has sworn off real relationships, possibly have?
They say opposites attract. These opposites are about to combust on impact.
IN THE UNLIKELY EVENT by L.J. Shen
You always know, when you get into reading one of this woman’s books, you’ll get one hell of a ride and still, Leigh managed to surprise us again and give us a fresh and outstanding holiday romance.
A one-night stand born from vengeance in a foreign land.
An explosive chemistry neither of us could deny.
We signed a contract on the back of a Boar’s Head Pub napkin that said if we ever met again, we would drop everything and be together.
Eight years and thousands of miles later, he’s here.
In New York.
And he’s America’s music obsession.
The intangible Irish poet who brings record executives to their knees.
The blizzard in my perfect, unshaken snow globe.
Last time we spoke, he was a beggar with no intention of becoming a king.
But a king he became, and now I’m his servant.
I’m not the same broken princess Malachy Doherty put back together with his callused hands.
I have a career I love.
A boyfriend I adore.
An apartment, a roommate, a life.
I changed. He changed, too.
But Mal kept the napkin.
Question is, will I keep my word?
THE GUY ON THE LEFT by Kate Stewart
Stewart keeps making me fall in love with her amazing characters and you’ll understand why if you read any of her books. Troy is one of the best heroes Kate has ever written.
It started with a lie. A night of blurred lines between a teacher and a student.
I wasn’t her student, yet it was the single most defining night of my life.
I’ve never been the man she thinks I am.
Most people have no idea about the life I’ve lived or the words that ring true when it comes to me—still waters run deep.
But you’d be hard-pressed to find a coed on the TGU campus who knows otherwise…because I’ve never corrected them.
The clock is ticking down, it’s Fourth and Inches with the ball inside the one-yard line and the focus is on me, The Guy on the Left. I’ve never felt like a football god, inside I’m…just Troy.
It’s time to set the record straight.
For my son, I‘ll find the strength.
In her eyes, I’m determined to gain redemption.
I will have them both, even if I have to take my eye off the ball.
THE FORBIDDEN MAN by Karina Halle
And that is how a gripping age-gap romance is written! Karina Halle surely knows how to end this year with a bang because The Forbidden Man was simply an unputdownable read from start to finish.
Starting over was her only option.
Forty-years old and still reeling from a public and painful divorce, Thalia Blackwood is looking for a fresh start, somewhere far away from her upside down life. When she’s offered a new job as the sports therapist for a football (soccer) team, she jumps at the chance. This is just what she needs to leave the heartbreak and shame of Manchester behind, trading it in for the warmth and hopeful vibrancy of Madrid.
He was her only desire.
Twenty-three year old Alejo Albarado is rising up the ranks in his career. As the charming forward for the Real Madrid team, Alejo’s life revolves around women, parties, and being a tabloid darling, that is until the new sports therapist joins the team.
Their passion could not be ignored.
What starts out as a strictly professional relationship between Thalia and the young Spanish player, slowly evolves into something more. Much more.
Their relationship was forbidden.
But their combustible chemistry and simmering sexual tension can only go so far—should Thalia give into Alejo’s advances, she’s at risk of not only losing her job, but succumbing to a much younger man will drag her through the spotlight again.
Alejo might be worth that risk.
Unless he breaks her heart in the process.
2019 HONORABLE MENTIONS
Click to read MY REVIEW:
MY FRIENDS’ FAVORITES!
A Book. A Thought. ♥ A Lovely Book Affair ♥ About That Story ♥ Alleskelle Blogs But Mostly Reads ♥ Beware Of The Reader ♥ Blue Mood Café ♥ Book Babes Unite – Christy ♥ BookishLauren ♥ Book Jotter ♥ Books and Blends ♥ Book Twins Reviews – Corina ♥ Chatterbooks Book Blog ♥ Crazies R Us Book Blog – Liz ♥ Dirty Girl Romance – Lana ♥ Feeding My Addiction Book Reviews ♥ HEA Novel Thoughts ♥ In Love & Words – Bree ♥ Malene Reads ♥ Musings of the Modern Belle ♥ Once Upon a Book Blog – Amy ♥ Our Book Boyfriends ♥ Reading Frenzy Book Blog ♥ Read More Sleep Less Blog ♥ Relentless Romance ♥ Romance Book Binge ♥ Sentranced Jem ♥ Shelly’s Book Corner ♥ Smokin’ Hot Book Blog ♥ The Bookish Sweet Tooth ♥ The Geekish Brunette ♥ The Racy Lit Reader ♥ The Staircase Reader
Please check all my friends lists, I am sure you will find lots of great recommendations!
Also, do you have other favorites that I missed on my long as heck list? Please comment down below, I would love to know them to put them on my TBR!
And let’s start preparing because I am pretty sure 2020 will be another extraordinary year for us bookies!
Again, happy holidays and happy 2020!