2014 – A Year in Review

fireworksHere we are again, at the end of another year! As today is the last day of 2014, it’s time for my annual “Year in Review” post.

As of the writing of this post I’ve finished reading 182 books. 13 of those books were ones I read with my 7 month-old niece, so for argument’s sake let’s say 169. My starting goal was to read 130 books, so I’m counting 2014’s reading challenge as a completed success! That means adding another ten books to next year’s challenge for a total of 140 books! (Here’s to hoping I make it!)

And now the difficult part…picking my top ten reads of 2014!

  1. Landline by Rainbow Rowell
  2. Lizzy and Jane by Katherine Reay
  3. Laugh by Mary Ann Rivers
  4. Romancing the Duke/Say Yes to the Marquess by Tessa Dare
  5. Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid (Really, the entire Knitting in the City series)
  6. The Chocolate Touch by Laura Florand
  7. Cinder/Scarlet/Cress by Marissa Meyer
  8. The River of No Return by Bee Ridgway
  9. Before I Go by Colleen Oakley
  10. Murder at the Breakers by Alyssa Maxwell

With the amount of books I read in a year, choosing a top 10 seems stupid. With that said, here are all my runners-up (in no particular order)!

Ok readers, I’m passing the torch to you. What did you read this year? Any books or authors that stand out? Share them below! Enjoy the rest of your New Year’s Eve! See you in 2015!

2013 – A Year In Review

fireworksIt’s totally cliché, but where the hell has this year gone? With today being the very last day of 2013 I figured I’d do a quick “Year in Review” post to talk about my progress with reading challenges and also to discuss my favorite books of the year!

Quick rundown on how I did with my reading challenges: I successfully read 120 books this year. In fact, as of the time of writing this post I am at 199 books for the year! (WOOT!) You can see all the books I’ve read with links to their reviews here. Now, a bit of bad news. I utterly failed (for the second year in a row) the audio book challenge. I didn’t listen to 1 audio book this year (read: pathetic.) I also didn’t do so great with the Book to Movie challenge either, with only 2 out of 12 read. Now, to the good news: I completed 78% of the Color Coded Challenge, or 7 out of 9 reads. I actually had a blast doing this challenge. You don’t realize how many books use colors in their titles until you do a challenge like this! Additionally, I unsurprisingly completed the Historical Fiction Challenge as well as the Pride and Prejudice Bicentenary challenge with no trouble at all.

And now for the difficult part: Picking my favorite reads of 2013.

  1. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
  2. The Lavender Garden by Lucinda Riley (look for my review next week!!!)
  3. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  4. The Story Guy by Mary Ann Rivers/Making It Last by Ruthie Knox
  5. Beauty and the Billionaire by Jessica Clare
  6. Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson
  7. Death in the Floating City by Tasha Alexander/Easy by Tammara Webber
  8. Shades of Earth by Beth Revis
  9. Twice Tempted by Jeaniene Frost
  10. The Secret of Ella and Micha/The Forever of Ella and Micha by Jessica Sorensen

Having read almost 200 books this year, choosing 10 (really 12) of my favorites almost killed me. So, in the effort of easing my conscience I’m giving you some of my runners-up (in no particular order)!

  1. Pride, Prejudice, and the Perfect Match by Marilyn Brant
  2. The Edelstein Trilogie by Kersin Gier (Book one, two, & three)
  3. The Westfield Wolves/Regency Vampyre Series by Lydia Dare
  4. Return to Longbourn by Shannon Winslow
  5. The Tutor’s Daughter by Julie Klassen
  6. Losing It by Cora Carmack
  7. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
  8. Bittersweet by Noelle Adams

This was hands down the hardest year yet to pick my favorite books. When you read almost 200 books in a year I guess that should be expected, no?

Ok, the burden is being passed to you. What did you love reading this year?!? Please let us know below. And finally, enjoy the rest of your New Year’s Day, hopefully with a great book. See you in 2014!

Kim’s Guest Review of Return to Longbourn by Shannon Winslow

return-to-longbourn-by-shannon-winslow-2013Recently I was asked to write a review of Return to Longbourn by Shannon Winslow for my good friends at the Austenprose blog.  I happily obliged, knowing that this work has been one of the highlights of the past few weeks, and I couldn’t wait to get all my thoughts down on paper (well, you know what I mean).  So, if you’re in the mood for a sequel to Pride and Prejudice that focuses on Mary Bennett, head on over and check out my review.  Many thanks to both Shannon for the review copy and Laurel Ann for letting me post another guest review!

My review can be  found here.

This is my ninth completed review for the Historical Fiction Challenge.

This is my fifth completed review for the Pride and  Prejudice Bicentenary Challenge.

#40 A Guest Review of For Myself Alone by Shannon Winslow

My newest review for Austenprose was posted today! This time it’s for Shannon Winslow’s new novel For Myself Alone: A Jane Austen Inspired Novel.

Gossip is a common theme within Austen’s novels.  We see how Wickham’s lies effect Darcy in Pride and Prejudice.  In Persuasion we see how Captain Wentworth almost stops his pursuit of Anne Elliot after hearing rumors of her impending nuptials to her cousin William.  I could keep going on and on, but I think you get the picture.  For Myself Alone is a really great read that showcases just what malicious gossip can do to people.

I highly suggest you go check out my review (here) and read the book for yourself!

This is my eighteenth completed review for the Historical Fiction Challenge

#49 A Guest Review of The Darcys of Pemberley by Shannon Winslow

Austenprose must really like me, because they posted another of my guest reviews today! This time on author Shannon Winslow’s debut novel, The Darcys of Pemberley.

We follow the Darcys in the months that follow their wedding as lies and secrets threaten to tear them apart.  Georgiana’s life is also threatened with unhappiness, as she’s trapped in a state of despondency over the love of her life being engaged to another woman.  Throw in another scheme against the Darcys by Wickham and Lydia and you’ve got the makings for a great Pride and Prejudice continuation.

For a direct link to my review click here

Congratulations to Shannon on a job well done!

This is my twenty-second completed review for the Historical Fiction Challenge