Thursday, January 1, 2015

Between the Pages - Books I Read in 2014

Two thousand fourteen was a year of upheaval in my personal life, and because of that, books offered me even more solace than usual. Also, my ability to recall and string together words to form worthwhile book reviews has been greatly affected. Although I find the inability to articulate my feelings about the books I read to be disheartening, it has not discouraged me from reading at all.

According to my Goodreads Challenge, I read 255 books in 2014 (first reading of single titles). However, the total on my 'books-read-in-2014' shelf was 269; that includes re-reads of books I have read prior to 2014. To make the numbers even more complicated, I read several books more than once in 2014. Then, there is my database total of 245, which is listed in detail below my favorites lists.

Those twenty-five re-reads for the year were the following: Gabriel's Inferno and Gabriel's Rapture by Sylvain Reynard; Fifty Shades of Grey, Fifty Shades Darker, and Fifty Shades Freed (for the 10th time each!) by E.L. James; All Over You and Devoured by Emily Snow; Collide by Gail McHugh; Reaper's Property by Joanna Wylde; Outlaw and Crash by Nicole James; Lay It Down by Cara McKenna; Motorcycle Man (audiobook) by Kristen Ashley; Naked, All In, and Eyes Wide Open (audiobooks) by Raine Miller; Rare and Precious Things (Kindle edition AND audiobook) by Raine Miller; Unteachable by Leah Raeder; First Strike by Pamela Clare; The Scribe by Elizabeth Hunter; Carnal Innocence (for the 5th time!) by Nora Roberts; Try and Take by Ella Frank; and Worth the Fall by Claudia Connor. Six of these were read again before proceeding with the latest series installments.

Last year also proved that, in some ways, I've become more particular and my tastes have changed considerably. I added fifteen books to my 'did-not-finish' shelf and attempted to re-read a couple of books that I had previously enjoyed. My opinions had changed so much that I was compelled to remove my ratings and comments for those books.

Each year I meticulously review my database and Goodreads shelves to select my favorites. Even though I arbitrarily decide upon the categories, I am careful in considering which books deserve each designation.

The favorites listed below are the books that affected me the most emotionally. There were also several others I read which were published prior to 2014 that really got to me. Better late than never though, right? As far as my audiobook listening goes, so far I have only listened to books that I've already read in Kindle format.

Last year I read 17 books through my public library's digital collection and I now hope to increase that number in the coming years. My Kindle Paperwhite currently houses 814 books along with numerous Authorgraphs. I'm starting 2015 with 126 books and audiobooks on my 'to-be-read' shelf. I've set my Goodreads Reading Challenge at 215 books this year, and the book I've chosen to read first is a novel in my favorite genre (romantic suspense) by a favorite author (Tracey Garvis Graves) entitled Every Time I Think of You.

I wish you enjoyable reading in 2015! 

My Favorites Published in 2014
(alphabetical by author)

Single Titles

Beauty from Love (Beauty #3) by Georgia Cates
Worth the Fall (The McKinney Brother #1) by Claudia Connor
The Fight for Us by Elizabeth Finn
Fatal Jeopardy (Fatal #7) by Marie Force
Take (Temptation #2) by Ella Frank
Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover
Lay It Down (Desert Dogs #1) by Cara McKenna
Rare and Precious Things (The Blackstone Affair #4) by Raine Miller
Jacked (Trent Brothers #1) by Tina Reber
Gabriel's Redemption (Gabriel's Inferno #3) by Sylvain Reynard (published 12/03/13, so just a small cheat)
Archer's Voice (A Sign of Love Series #1)  by Mia Sheridan 
Fatal Hearts by Norah Wilson

Series Titles

Monster in His Eyes Series by J.M. Darhower
Hard Ink Series by Laura Kaye
The Blackstone Affair by Raine Miller
With Me in Seattle by Kristen Proby
In the Company of Killers by J.A. Redmerski
Reaper's MC by Joanna Wylde

Favorites by Category

Favorite Mainstream Romance - Solsbury Hill: A Novel by Susan M. Wyler
Favorite Contemporary Romance - Gabriel's Redemption (Gabriel's Inferno #3) by Sylvain Reynard
Favorite Romantic Suspense - Mean Streak by Sandra Brown, (runner up) The Collector by Nora Roberts
Favorite Inspirational Romance - Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover
Favorite Fantasy (sci-fi/historical fiction) Romance - Written in My Own Heart's Blood (Outlander #8) by Diana Gabaldon
Favorite New Adult Romance - Breakable (Contours of the Heart #2) by Tammara Webber
Favorite Romantic Novella - Hard to Hold on To (Hard Ink #2.5) by Laura Kaye
Favorite Romantic Series - The Blackstone Affair by Raine Miller
Favorite Audiobook - Rare and Precious Things by Raine Miller and narrated by Grace Grant, Shane East, and India Baldwin
Favorite Mystery - Terminal City (Alexandra Cooper #16) by Linda Fairstein
Favorite Romantic Hero - James Alexander Malcolm McKenzie Fraser from Written in My Own Heart's Blood
Favorite Romantic Heroine - Brynne Bennett from Rare and Precious Things
Favorite Romantic Couple - Ethan Blackstone and Brynne Bennett from Rare and Precious Things
Favorite Alpha Male - Ethan Blackstone from Rare and Precious Things
Favorite Debut Author - Claudia Connor for Worth the Fall (The McKinney Brothers #1)

Most Pleasant Surprise - Solsbury Hill: A Novel by Susan M. Wyler
Most Luscious Romance - Gabriel's Redemption (Gabriel's Inferno #3) by Sylvain Reynard
Most Erotic Romance - The Muse (Rothvale Legacy Historical Prequel #1) by Raine Miller
Most Outside My Comfort Zone - Insidious (Tales from the Dark Side #1)  by Aleatha Romig
Most Heartrending - Loving Mr. Daniels by Brittainy C. Cherry
Most Humorous - Tied (Tangled #4) by Emma Chase
Most Tormented Hero - Ethan Blackstone from Rare and Precious Things by Raine Miller, (runner up) Asher Lee from The Vixen and the Vet by Kate Regnery
Most "Kick Ass" Heroine - Claire Beauchamp Randall Fraser from Written in My Own Heart's Blood
Most Guilty Pleasure - Two VERY dark series: Monster in His Eyes by J.M. Darhower and In the Company of Killers by J.A. Redmerski

Most Anticipated Books of 2015

Deep Blue Eternity by Natasha Boyd
Overruled (The Legal Briefs #1) by Emma Chase
One With You (Crossfire #5) by Sylvia Day
Trust (Temptation #3) by Ella Frank
Confess by Colleen Hoover
Give It All (A Desert Dogs Novel) by Cara McKenna
My Lord (Rothvale Legacy #2) by Raine Miller
The Prince (A Gabriel's Inferno/Florentine Series Novella) by Sylvain Reynard
The Raven (The Florentine #1) by Sylvain Reynard
The Liar by Nora Roberts
Deep (Stage Dive #4) by Kylie Scott
Silver Bastard (Silver Valley #1)  by Joanna Wylde