2021 Favorite Reads

It was a good year for reading. And writing. I managed to release two books instead of my normal one. Woohoo! They are…

Love Notes (a contemporary twist on the Daddy Long Legs story that readers are loving)

Of Stone and Sky (a contemporary romance with a glimpse into the Roma culture)

I didn’t break any reading record, but I did read over 80 books (if you count my own books I reread to update).

Without further ado, here are my Top 10. I also have 15 honorable mentions. I read many more excellent stories, but these are the ones that touched me most.

My Top 10 Books in 2021

  1. Book of Mormon (inspirational/inspired/self-help/motivational/spiritual)
  2. A Walk in My Shoes: Questions I’m Often Asked as a Gay Latter-day Saint (memoir/inspirational)
  3. Rhythm of War by Brandon Sanderson (fantasy)
  4. The Songbook of Benny Lament by Amy Harmon (interracial historical romance)
  5. Promised Land by Barak Obama (memoir)
  6. The Accidental Text by Becky Monson (chick lit)
  7. The Body: A Guide for Occupants by Bill Bryson (nonfiction)
  8. Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin (historical non-fiction/Civil War)
  9. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (classic)
  10. Grant by Ron Chernow (biography)

Here is my Goodreads Year in Review link if you want to find any of these books.

Honorable Mentions

  1. Scythe series by Neal Shusterman (dystopian)
  2. I am Malala by Malala Yousafzai (memoir)
  3. Giver of Stars by JoJo Moyes (historical fiction)
  4. Becoming Mrs. Lewis by Patti Callahan (historical)
  5. Silent Partner by Jennifer Peel (contemporary romance)
  6. Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens (contemporary fiction)
  7. All’s Fair in Love and Blood by Jennifer Peel (contemporary romance)
  8. Making the Marquess by Nicole Van (Regency/Scottish)
  9. Love the One You’re With by Jennifer Peel (contemporary romance)
  10. Love Unexpected by Jenny Proctor (contemporary romance)
  11. The Bone Elixir by Carrie Rubin (paranormal thriller)
  12. The Second Blind Son by Amy Harmon (fantasy)
  13. The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix (paranormal)
  14. Remembering Jamie by Nichole Van (Scottish highlands romance)
  15. Anatomy of Peace by the Arbinger Institute (self-help)

For my own curiosity, here is the breakdown of genres read:

Hope you have lots of happy reading in 2022. I plan to. 🙂

Of Daggers & Deception

This is the second book in this medieval romance series by Amanda Sowards, and WOW! It’s intense. It begins 11 years after the ending of the last book (Of Sword and Shadows) and is told from Rasheed’s POV. He was Gillen’s Moorish friend from the last book, a Muslim convert to Christianity.

Here’s a short blurb of the book:

When one of his best friends is abducted, Rasheed immediately gathers a rescue party. Joining forces with the mysterious Cecilia, the group faces pirates, old enemies, and a host of other foes. Rasheed forms a surprising connection with Cecilia, but he soon discovers that nothing is as it seems, especially when they are forced to choose between love and duty.

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True of Heart

This book by Martha Keyes really surprised me in the best of ways. I was expecting just another blah kind of Regency story (don’t get me wrong, I often love these, but they are very similar and hardly ever surprise me), but this one was unique.

It’s a retelling of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and was super riveting. I read it in one day (which I hardly ever do with Regency stories). This had everything I love in a romance—great characters with depth, twists and turns I didn’t see coming, and swoony romance (duh! Ha ha).

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Pre-release deal!

My next book is almost ready to release. YEA!!! Love Notes is on sale for only 99 cents through release day (Dec 6). Then it will go back up to normal price. This is the 4th book in my stand-alone series the Ruled Out Romances. You don’t have to read any of these in order, as they have different characters. It’s just an opposites-attract trope series. This is one of my favorites I’ve ever written. I hope you love it, too. Here’s the blurb:

Forget my first kiss?

Not when it goes viral.

Katie is tired of one-sided love notes. For years, she’s waited for her brother’s best friend and email pal to realize she’s grown up and has feelings for him. But no more. She’s tired of being alone.

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