Best of 2014: Annie’s Picks!

Posted December 28, 2014 by Annie in Best Of / 16 Comments

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BEST NEW RELEASE: THE KING by TIFFANY REISZ

the king

Review

I’ve been a fan of Reisz’s from the very beginning so I didn’t think that getting Kingsley’s book would offer much more to the already amazing series, but I was wrong. Reisz is really a force to be reckoned with. Captivating characters paired with equally stunning writing makes this book the best book I’ve read this year. Hands down!

BEST NEW TO ME BOOK: OUTLANDER by DIANA GABALDON

outlander

Review

The size daunted me at first, but if I can get through a book that feels like a thousand pages long and still love it, then you know it’s something that everyone needs to read. Merging together romance, historical fiction, politics – you name it! – Diana Gabaldon expertly weaves them all together in this spectacular book. It’s impossible not to fall in love with Jamie and Claire.

 

BEST NEW SERIES: McCAULEY BROTHERS by MARIE HARTE

troublemakernextdoor

I almost didn’t have a pick for this category until right before the Christmas holidays. I wanted some light, funny and sexy and oh man, I got that but SO MUCH MORE with this series. Harte hits ALL the rights notes with this series. Hot Scottish brothers who are flippin’ hilarious, smart AND are absolute beasts in the sack! BEASTS, I tell you. I nearly fainted from all the swooning.

 

FAVORITE HEROINE: LIGHT MY FIRE by G.A. AIKEN / DARK SKYE by KRESLEY COLE

light my fire

Review

Yeah yeah, I’m cheating here but this is the first time I’ve had two picks since doing this and the other girls have done it more so HA! But when you really think about it both these series share a lot of similarities. If you’re a fan of one, you’ll most likely enjoy the other.

LIGHT MY FIRE blew me away with its worldbuilding, its hilarious antics as well as its romance. Aiken just killed this book and it was so worth the wait in the end. Aiken just writes the most endearing characters and Elina is no exception. She is strong, intelligent and funny.

darkskye

Review

Lanthe is much of the same. There was lots of animosity between her and Thronos but damn do they have some chemistry too. She never once compromised who she was and that sort of strength is something I look for in all my favorite heroines.

 

FAVORITE HERO: JAMIE FRASER from OUTLANDER by DIANA GABALDON / LANDON LUCAS MAXFIELD from BREAKABLE by TAMMARA WEBBER

Two here again because one is an oldie but a goodie and the other is a release from this year.

outlander

Review

I don’t think anyone can read OUTLANDER and not want to marry Jamie Fraser. I’ve loved so many heroes….Roarke, Rhage, Daegus Mackelter, Jericho Barrons. Those have been my top of the tier favorites for years. You can now add Jamie to that ultimate list of book boyfriends. He’s just…*sigh* perfection.

breakable

Review

My other favorite from a release this year is Landon. Landon and Lucas is the same guy, but are two sides of a coin; there’s your smart and loyal side and then there’s also your bad boy side. I loved both. But together? Man oh man, hold me back! I just loved the balance Webber was able to make with him. If the perfect man could be made from a fictional book to be my boyfriend, Tammara Webber has it covered.

 

BEST COVER: THE KING by J.R. WARD

THEKING

Review

Words cannot describe how sexy this cover is. Just looking at it gives me shivers. It’s primal. The art department definitely got this one right with its attention to detail and the emotions that they wanted to carry across. That man is a Brother fo sho.

 

BIGGEST LETDOWN: UGLY LOVE BY COLLEEN HOOVER

uglylove

Review

Hoover was one of my favorites from last year but unfortunately the two releases that came out this year didn’t do it for me. They were too far-fetched, unrealistic and lacked the heart that her earlier books possessed.

 

FAVORITE COUPLE: ALL KINDS OF TIED DOWN by MARY CALMES

allkindsoftieddown

Review

This was another surprise for me although it shouldn’t be. Calmes has always written some fantastic and endearing characters but it was Miro Jones and Ian Doyle stole my heart from the very first page. On their own, they are a pleasure to read about but together they are an absolute dream. I could read about them forever. Please Mary Calmes, write more books about them! Also, that’s two years in a row that I had a M/M couple as my favorite of the year!

 

BEST SEX SCENE: HOW TO HANDLE A HEARTBREAKER by MARIE HARTE

HOWTOHANDLEAHEARTBREAKER

Review

Have I died and gone to heaven? That’s how I felt like when I read my first ever Marie Harte sex scene. To all you readers who have read this book before and didn’t tell me about it, WHYYYY!??!!? Why didn’t you tell me to read it before? Because damn, I think I just found my new drug. I cannot get enough of the filthy things that happen in this book.

 

AUTHOR OF THE YEAR: TIFFANY REISZ

tiffany reisz

Are you surprised? No, you shouldn’t be because I’ve been raving about Tiffany Reisz all year. I’ve read every one of her releases this year and each one is smartly written, charming and sexy all at the same time. Reisz truly has a gift of a born storyteller. I definitely cannot wait for what the new year will bring.

 

Remember to check back for the next 3 days to see the rest of our Best of 2014!

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Annie

Blogger/Reviewer at Under the Covers Book Blog
I’m an obsessive makeup junkie and a compulsive reader. I like to call Under the Covers Book Blog my stomping ground, but when I’m not talking about books with my girls, I write New Adult Dystopian and Contemporary Romance under the pen name Ana Jolene (http://www.anajolene.com). I also work as a virtual assistant for authors. You also can find me as a reviewer and columnist for FreshFiction.com.

When it comes to books I’m pretty adventurous. I read everything from Paranormal Romance to Urban Fantasy, New Adult, BDSM, LGBT fiction, Cozy Mysteries and even YA. If it’s got the littlest trace of romance in it, then I’ll probably read it. That being said, my all-time favorite authors are J.R. Ward and Karen Marie Moning.

When I’m not submerged in a good book, you can find me musing about makeup and planners or dreaming about Kpop boys and beaches. Until then, check out my reviews and let’s talk books!
Annie
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Amy RAround the Book Blogosphere #20 — Unique Reading Challenge and Best Audiobooks of 2014Tanya @ Rantings of a Reading AddictLupdilupJennifer @ The BookNympho Recent comment authors
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Elizabeth
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Elizabeth

Outlander was new to me too and I did love the king’s cover

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

I’m so glad I tried the Outlander series as daunting as it is.

Timitra
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Timitra

I’ve got the first in Tiffany Reisz’s series on my tbr pile hoping to read it soon also want to read Marie Harte’s series

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

Oooh you’re in for a treat then! I can’t wait for you to read it! You’ll have to give me updates when you do! And same goes for the Marie Harte series! I was just telling the girls this morning how great it is!

Melanie Simmons (@mlsimmons)
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Melanie Simmons (@mlsimmons)

I love Tiffany Reisz. Not only is she a great author, but she is a great person. I love following her on Twitter. Her and Andrew crack me up. 🙂

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

I know! She’s such a doll!

Sophia Rose
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Sophia Rose

Hey, another Outlander convert. I totally love this series. I’m caught up except the last one. Oh yes, I loved Landon from the Easy books too.

I think Dark Skye would have made my list if I’d read it already. And that goes for All Tied Down too since I’m a huge Mary Calmes fan.

I was only meh about the first book in the Marie Harte series so I didn’t keep reading. I haven’t read any Colleen Hoover books yet.

Not sure I’m up for a Tiffany Reisz book, but maybe someday.

Nice list, Annie!

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

Thanks Sophia Rose! I read the Marie Harte series out of order (bad I know) and the first one was my least fave, although it’s probably the hottest. I’m in love with the series though!

Jennifer @ The BookNympho
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Jennifer @ The BookNympho

I have Marie Harte on my TBR. I’ll have to move her up the list.

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

I hope you give her a shot!

Lupdilup
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Lupdilup

Great choices Annie! I have to add some of the ones I don’t have on my list 🙂

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

Thanks lup! xx

Tanya @ Rantings of a Reading Addict
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Tanya @ Rantings of a Reading Addict

Outlander is very daunting. I’ve been wanting to get to it because it seems everyone loves it, but it may take me all year! LOL. I loved Dark Skye so much!

Under the Covers Book Blog
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Under the Covers Book Blog

LOL! It is, but I hope you give it a shot! It’s better than the TV show in my opinion.

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Around the Book Blogosphere #20 — Unique Reading Challenge and Best Audiobooks of 2014

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Amy R
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Amy R

I loved Outlander and All Kinds of Tied Down.