RhiReading News

Dear readers,

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-- Rhi


Top Fives of 2008

As with anything of this nature the following top 5 lists are merely a matter of opinion. In this case... my opinions. I read a LOT of books this year, well for me anyway. ;D I felt the need to reflect on them and decide what were the best of them... and maybe the worst. -- Rhi

Top Five Urban Fantasy

1. Madhouse by Rob Thurman -- Third in the series Cal, his brother Niko and their friends face one of their most perilous adventures ever and I almost couldn't put the book down.
2. Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs -- Third in the Mercy Thompson series this unique series has lots of fans and recently spawned a comic book series. Reconciling the love triangle and presenting a controversial but vivid story this was definitely one of my favorite books of the year.
3. Storm Born by Richelle Mead -- First in a new UF series by one of my favorite authors in the genre, Storm Born came out in August and featured fae, elementals, kitsune and a pretty awesome heroine.
4. Darkling by Yasmine Galenorn -- Many argue this series is PNR but I disagree. The third installment finally explained Menolly and made her a very empathetic, relatable and likable character and the story was great.
5. Rogue by Rachel Vincent -- Another series that is on the PNR shelves and does not belong there IMO. The second book in the series about werecats in Texas. Faythe does a lot of growing in this one and the entire story turns their world a bit on its ear and I loved that.

Top Five Paranormal Romance

1. Pleasure Unbound by Larissa Ione -- There was no way this couldn't be my #1 choice for the year. Combining the best elements of urban fantasy with a sexy romance while building the basis for a new series this book rocked!
2. Slave by Cheryl Brooks -- One of the best new authors I have discovered this year and one of the most original books I've ever read. Romantica done flawlessly!
3. Gena Showalter's Lords of the Underworld #1, #2 & #3 -- They had to be included together since they came out back to back. While not my favorites as individuals this new series offers promise and has great characters I look forward to future novels about.
4. Dream Chaser by Sherrilyn Kenyon -- After the second book in the Dream Hunters series digusted me I wasn't sure I would read this one but I caved and I LOVED this book. It had a well matched hero and heroine and the background characters sold the story.
5. Because Your Vampire Said So by Michele Bardsley -- Discovered this series shortly before this third installment came out. I like a good dark vampire romance more than anything but this fluffy, humorous series is really fun and this book's heroine was a favorite.

Top Five Anthologies

1. Weddings from Hell -- Gotta love an anthology that combines weddings and the paranormal. Stand out story: Ghouls Night Out by Terri Garey
2. Wolfsbane and Mistletoe -- Werewolves celebrating, mourning for and saving the holidays. Great authors and a great theme made for a great collection. Stand out story: Keeping Watch Over His Flock by Toni L. P. Kelner
3. The Mammoth Book of Vampire Romance -- A book with 25 romantic tales involving vampires. Some were really good others were so-so but with so much variety there was something for every vampire romance fan. Stand out story: The Midday Mangler Meets His Match by Rachel Vincent
4. Hotter Than Hell -- A dozen twisted paranormal tales of lust, love and mystery from some of the big names in the UF & PNR genres. Stand out story: Music Hath Charms by Tanya Huff
5. First Blood -- Okay, I actually haven't finished this one yet but I'm loving it so far and it's the only other anthology that came out this year I'm working on. :P

Top Five Discoveries

1. The Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead -- A fun young adult series that makes for some great guilty pleasure reading that I can share with younger readers.
2. True Blood -- The HBO series based on Charlaine Harris' Sookie Stackhouse (Southern Vampire Mysteries) series. Lots of violence, gore and nudity makes for a vampire series even guys can appreciate.
3. librarything.com -- I was introduced to this by members of a forum I visit and it is so very helpful! I need help keeping track of my books and I love that I can mark the ones I've read already so I can sort out the unread ones.
4. The Children of the Sea series by Virginia Kantra -- I've been looking for a good series with sea related creatures like mermaids or roane for a long time. Kantra's series centers on selkies and has some awesome covers!
5. Author Kendra Leigh Castle -- Being the discerning reader I think I am I'm always thrilled when I read an author and feel like she (or he) should be watched closely. Castle's Highland series combines werewolf romances with other greater urban fantasy elements so fluidly it feels natural.

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