In keeping with tradition, I’ll post my best
books read in the year. This year was my Born
Again Author year, :) with heavy travels the
majority of the year, as well as managing the
day to day aspects and challenges of taking care
of a family. I haven’t done a tally, but I think
I’ve read less than previous years. but I still
did read! And some fantastic novels too.

Listed in the order I read them…

daughters

 

 

 

I think it was by pure kismet that I was fortunate enough to stumble across Lukavics’ signing at ALA this past June. When I found out her debut is horror (prairie horror as I call it), I could NOT have been more excited. I love horror as a genre, and have been looking for more lady horror writers for some time. Lukavics’ creepy debut novel did NOT disappoint. I can’t wait
to read her next!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

noneoftheabove

 

 

 

I honestly did not know what to expect going into this great debut by Gregorio, other than that it featured an intersex protagonist. I loved the boldness in Gregorio’s storytelling. She does not shy away from emotions and complications
and complexities and everything that it means to be vulnerable and human, reflected also in a great supporting cast of characters. So well done! Bravo!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

trouble

 

 

I had the pleasure of meeting Stephanie Tromly at the Texas Teen Books Festival in Austin this past September. I picked up her debut from Bookpeople while I was there, and am I glad that I did!

This novel was different than anything I’ve read in a while. It made me laugh out loud multiple times with its dark humor, great dialogue, and absurdity. But at the same time, Tromly manages to create fascinating characters, none of them perfect. She also tackles hard topics well, and I enjoyed the mystery aspect of the story on top of everything else I mentioned. REALLY looking forward to the sequel of this one!!

 

 

 

 

stephanie

 

 

*Stephanie and me at TTBF in September. So fun!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

flamecaster

 

 

 

I am so lucky. Not only was Cinda kind enough to blurb Serpentine, but she personally gave me a signed ARC of Flamecaster when we met up at Dragon Con. Her Seven Realms series is a favorite one of mine, and I couldn’t have been more excited to read more set in this world! I loved the new characters she introduced as well as new intrigues and mysteries, and glimpses into new relationships forged. The wait is toooo long for the next installment!!

 

 

 

 

cinda

 

 

 

 

*Cinda and me sharing a delicious Mexican meal in Atlanta during Dragon Con.

 

 

 

 

blackwolves

 

And last but not least, Black Wolves by Kate Elliott.

Another friend of mine—Kate is someone I adore as a friend but really admire as an author (and rad person all around). Like Flamecaster, Black Wolves is the first book in a second series based in the Crossroads Trilogy, another favorite fantasy series of mine! So I was nervous. I waited to read the novel while abroad visiting family (it seemed a tradition for me to read Kate’s big ass novels while traveling), and I knew going in that I could trust her. This is so important as a reader, don’t you think?

And she did not disappoint. It was so wonderful to return to that world, but get to better know old and new characters. Her storytelling weaves the past with the present, mysteries with revelations, and always with intriguing and real characters that leap from the pages. As a writer, she has so many fortes, but one of my favorites is Kate’s ability to create characters that make me laugh aloud, but also pause and think. Two of her main characters are also unconvetional in epic fantasy, being older in age, one hero in his 70s.

If you want amazing world building, complex storylines, fantastic characters who are complicated and flawed and amazing, plus emotional depths in the storytelling, read this novel!

katezen
*Kate, me and Zen Cho taking a break from Comic Con this summer with delicious food and desserts! I also grabbed a copy of Zen’s gorgeous UK edition of Sorcerer to the Crown from Foyles in london last week and was lucky enough to get it signed!

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