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Top 10 of 2016: Best Book Boyfriends of 2016

Welcome to Day Four of the Top 10 of 2016

A WEEK OF LOOKING BACK…

…AND LOOKING FORWARD

As mentioned previously…

I can’t believe that I’ve been co-hosting this event for six years with Jaime of Two Chicks on Books and three years with Nancy of Tales of the Ravenous Reader! And while I’m so sad that Mindy won’t be joining us this year, I’m thrilled that Bridget of Dark Faerie Tales has joined the team, as has Nancy’s blog partner, Christy.

I haven’t read a ton of books this year, or blogged very much, so I almost decided not to participate. But this event is so much fun that I just couldn’t miss out.

If you haven’t yet heard of the Top 10 of 2016 week-long event, in a nutshell it’s where we share our favorite bookish lists and invite you to share yours over the next five days by leaving your post links in the daily Linky Lists.

Yet again, we’re each hosting our own giveaways on four of the five days of this challenge – We’re taking Day One off, Dark Faerie Tales is hosting Day Two’s giveaway, I am hosting Day Three’s giveaway, Two Chicks on Books is hosting Day Four’s giveaway, and Tales of the Ravenous Reader is hosting Day Five’s giveaway. So be sure to visit each of our blogs this week to share your post links and enter the giveaways!

The Best Book Boyfriends of 2016

It wasn’t easy picking bookish boyfriends for this year’s post. I read quite a few YA contemporaries this year and my bookish boyfriends almost always come from non-contemporary stories unless they’re NA. Also, I wasn’t able to catch up on all series with my forever bookish boyfriends so I had to put a bit more thought into my selections. And, for a couple books I was torn between two characters, which made choosing that much harder. But I finally decided, and here they are…


#1

ARIC

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Title & Series: ARCANA RISING (The Arcana Chronicles #4)
Author: Kresley Cole
Release date: August 15, 2016
Publisher: Valkyrie Press
Pages: 280
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook

Description…

Losses mount and deadly new threats converge in this next action-packed tale of the Arcana Chronicles by #1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole.

When the battle is done . . . 
The Emperor unleashes hell and annihilates an army, jeopardizing the future of mankind–but Circe strikes back. The epic clash between them devastates the Arcana world and nearly kills Evie, separating her from her allies.

And all hope is lost . . . 
With Aric missing and no sign that Jack and Selena escaped Richter’s reach, Evie turns more and more to the darkness lurking inside her. Two Arcana emerge as game changers: one who could be her salvation, the other her worst nightmare.

Vengeance becomes everything.
To take on Richter, Evie must reunite with Death and mend their broken bond. But as she learns more about her role in the future–and her chilling past–will she become a monster like the Emperor? Or can Evie and her allies rise up from Richter’s ashes, stronger than ever before?

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#2

DIMITRI

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Title: VAMPIRE ACADEMY (10th Anniversary Edition)
Author: Richelle Mead
Release date: November 29, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 512
Formats: Paperback, eBook

Description…

St. Vladimir’s Academy isn’t just any boarding school—it’s a hidden place where vampires are educated in the ways of magic and half-human teens train to protect them. Rose Hathaway is a Dhampir, a bodyguard for her best friend Lissa, a Moroi Vampire Princess. They’ve been on the run, but now they’re being dragged back to St. Vladimir’s—the very place where they’re most in danger. . . .

Rose and Lissa become enmeshed in forbidden romance, the Academy’s ruthless social scene, and unspeakable nighttime rituals. But they must be careful lest the Strigoi—the world’s fiercest and most dangerous vampires—make Lissa one of them forever.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUNDGOODREADS


#3

ELIAS

ATorchAgainstTheNight

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Title & Series: A TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT (An Ember in the Ashes #2)
Author: Sabaa Tahir
Release date: August 30, 2016
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 464
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

Elias and Laia are running for their lives.

After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.

Laia is determined to break into Kauf – the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison – to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars’ survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.

But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene – Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.

Bound to Marcus’s will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own – one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape… and kill them both.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#4

PAUL

MillionWorldsWith_jkt_des1.indd

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Title & Series: A MILLION WORLDS WITH YOU (Firebird #3)
Author: Claudia Gray
Release date: November 1, 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

The fate of the multiverse rests in Marguerite’s hands in the final installment of the Firebird trilogy by New York Times bestselling author Claudia Gray.

Ever since she used the Firebird, her parent’s invention, to cross through alternate dimensions, Marguerite has been at the center of a cross-dimensional feud. Now she has learned that the evil Triad Corporation plans to destroy hundreds of universes, using their ultimate weapon: another dimension’s Marguerite who is wicked, psychologically twisted, and always one step ahead.

Even though her boyfriend Paul has always been at Marguerite’s side, the Triad’s last attack has left him a changed man, and he may never be the same again. Marguerite alone must stop Triad and prevent the destruction of the multiverse. It’s a battle of the Marguerites . . . and only one can win.

In the epic conclusion to the sweeping series that kicked off with A Thousand Pieces of You, fate and family will be questioned, loves will be won and lost, and the multiverse will be forever changed.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#5

MATHER

3-frostlikenight_final

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Title & Series: FROST LIKE NIGHT (Snow Like Ashes #3)
Author: Sara Raasch
Release date: September 20, 2016
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Pages: 496
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

Angra is alive, his Decay is spreading—and no one is safe.

Meira will do anything to save her world. With Angra trying to break through her mental defenses, she desperately needs to learn to control her own magic—so when the leader of a mysterious Order from Paisly offers to teach her, she jumps at the chance. But the true solution to stopping the Decay lies in a labyrinth deep beneath the Season Kingdoms. To defeat Angra, Meira will have to enter the labyrinth, destroy the very magic she’s learning to control—and make the biggest sacrifice of all.

Mather will do anything to save his queen. He needs to rally the Children of the Thaw, find Meira—and finally tell her how he really feels. But with a plan of attack that leaves no kingdom unscathed and a major betrayal within their ranks, winning the war—and protecting Meira—slips farther and farther out of reach.

Ceridwen will do anything to save her people. Angra had her brother killed, stole her kingdom, and made her a prisoner. But when she’s freed by an unexpected ally who reveals a shocking truth behind Summer’s slave trade, Ceridwen must take action to save her true love and her kingdom, even if it costs her what little she has left.

As Angra unleashes the Decay on the world, Meira, Mather, and Ceridwen must bring the kingdoms of Primoria together…or lose everything.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#6

TEACH

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Title & Series: BLACKHEARTS (Blackhearts #1)
Author: Nicole Castroman
Release date: February 9, 2016
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 384
Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Description…

Blackbeard the pirate was known for striking fear in the hearts of the bravest of sailors. But once he was just a young man who dreamed of leaving his rigid life behind to chase adventure in faraway lands. Nothing could stop him—until he met the one girl who would change everything.

Edward “Teach” Drummond, son of one of Bristol’s richest merchants, has just returned from a year-long journey on the high seas to find his life in shambles. Betrothed to a girl he doesn’t love and sick of the high society he was born into, Teach dreams only of returning to the vast ocean he’d begun to call home. There’s just one problem: convincing his father to let him leave and never come back.

Following her parents’ deaths, Anne Barrett is left penniless and soon to be homeless. Though she’s barely worked a day in her life, Anne is forced to take a job as a maid in the home of Master Drummond. Lonely days stretch into weeks, and Anne longs for escape. How will she ever realize her dream of sailing to Curaçao—where her mother was born—when she’s stuck in England?

From the moment Teach and Anne meet, they set the world ablaze. Drawn to each other, they’re trapped by society and their own circumstances. Faced with an impossible choice, they must decide to chase their dreams and go, or follow their hearts and stay.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#7

PLOY

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Title & Series: VIAL THINGS (Resurrectionist #1)
Author: Leah Clifford
Release date: August 9, 2016
Publisher: Self-published
Pages: 221
Formats: eBook

Description…

When the resurrectionists of Fissure’s Whipp begin disappearing, eighteen-year-old Allie knows someone is after their blood—or, more accurately, the genetic mutation that allows their blood to heal wounds, save lives and even bring back the recently deceased.

Raised by her aunt after her parents’ deaths, Allie knows staying vigilant means staying alive. She’s trained her whole life to protect herself by any means necessary, from self defense classes to extensive weapons training in knives. Now, she’s gone so far as to befriend a homeless boy named Ploy who unknowingly trades a few nights a week on her couch in exchange for being a human tripwire to those hunting her.

But as Allie and Ploy’s feelings for each other grow, Allie realizes this time, she’ll need more than fighting skills and a sharp blade to beat a villain literally out for blood.

Protecting a girl he shouldn’t love, from a threat he understands too well, Ploy must face his past to save his future in Allie’s world—a world where bringing back the dead can cost you your life.

AMAZON | GOODREADS


#8

KHALID

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Title & Series: THE ROSE & THE DAGGER (The Wrath and the Dawn #2)
Author: Renée Ahdieh
Release date: April 26, 2016
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook

Description…

The darker the sky, the brighter the stars.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad is forced from the arms of her beloved husband, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once thought Khalid a monster—a merciless killer of wives, responsible for immeasurable heartache and pain—but as she unraveled his secrets, she found instead an extraordinary man and a love she could not deny. Still, a curse threatens to keep Shazi and Khalid apart forever.

Now she’s reunited with her family, who have found refuge in the desert, where a deadly force is gathering against Khalid—a force set on destroying his empire and commanded by Shazi’s spurned childhood sweetheart. Trapped between loyalties to those she loves, the only thing Shazi can do is act. Using the burgeoning magic within her as a guide, she strikes out on her own to end both this terrible curse and the brewing war once and for all. But to do it, she must evade enemies of her own to stay alive.

The saga that began with The Wrath and the Dawn takes its final turn as Shahrzad risks everything to find her way back to her one true love again.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#9

LORD THORNTON

ARCHITECT book cover front for online

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Title & Series: THE ARCHITECT OF SONG (Haunted Hearts Legacy #1)
Author: A.G. Howard
Release date: August 15, 2016
Publisher: A.G. Howard
Pages: 425
Formats: Paperback, eBook

Description…

A lady imprisoned by deafness, an architect imprisoned by his past, and a ghost imprisoned within the petals of a flower – intertwine in this love story that transcends life and death.

For most of her life, nineteen-year-old Juliet Emerline has subsisted – isolated by deafness – making hats in the solitude of her home. Now, she’s at risk to lose her sanctuary to Lord Nicolas Thornton, a twenty-seven-year-old mysterious and eccentric architect with designs on her humble estate. When she secretly witnesses him raging beside a grave, Juliet investigates, finding the name “Hawk” on the headstone and an unusual flower at the base. The moment Juliet touches the petals, a young English nobleman appears in ghostly form, singing a song only her deaf ears can hear. The ghost remembers nothing of his identity or death, other than the one name that haunts his afterlife: Thornton.

To avenge her ghostly companion and save her estate, Juliet pushes aside her fear of society and travels to Lord Thornton’s secluded holiday resort, posing as a hat maker in one of his boutiques. There, she finds herself questioning who to trust: the architect of flesh and bones who can relate to her through romantic gestures, heartfelt notes, and sensual touches … or the specter who serenades her with beautiful songs and ardent words, touching her mind and soul like no other man ever can. As sinister truths behind Lord Thornton’s interest in her estate and his tie to Hawk come to light, Juliet is lured into a web of secrets. But it’s too late for escape, and the tragic love taking seed in her heart will alter her silent world forever.

International and NYT bestselling author, A.G. Howard, brings her darkly magical and visual/visceral storytelling to Victorian England. The Architect of Song is the first installment in her lush and romantic Haunted Hearts Legacy series, a four book gothic saga following the generations of one family as – haunted by both literal and figurative ghosts – they search for self-acceptance, love, and happiness.

New Adult: Recommended for ages 17+.

AMAZON | GOODREADS


#10

FOWLER

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Title & Series: REIGN OF SHADOWS (Reign of Shadows #1)
Author: Sophie Jordan
Release date: February 9, 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 304
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


I opted not to officially choose any honorable mention bookish boyfriends, though I was so tempted to list a few of my favorite not-so-boyfriend-material villains as book boyfriends like Enzo Valenciano (wrong for so many reasons) or King Maven to name just two…


Link up

Leave a link to your Best Book Boyfriends in 2016 posts in the Linky List below…




Top 10 of 2016: Best Book Covers of 2016

Welcome to Day Two of the Top 10 of 2016

A WEEK OF LOOKING BACK…

…AND LOOKING FORWARD

As mentioned yesterday…

I can’t believe that I’ve been co-hosting this event for six years with Jaime of Two Chicks on Books and three years with Nancy of Tales of the Ravenous Reader! And while I’m so sad that Mindy won’t be joining us this year, I’m thrilled that Bridget of Dark Faerie Tales has joined the team, as has Nancy’s blog partner, Christy.

I haven’t read a ton of books this year, or blogged very much, so I almost decided not to participate. But this event is so much fun that I just couldn’t miss out.

If you haven’t yet heard of the Top 10 of 2016 week-long event, in a nutshell it’s where we share our favorite bookish lists and invite you to share yours over the next five days by leaving your post links in the daily Linky Lists.

Yet again, we’re each hosting our own giveaways on four of the five days of this challenge – We’re taking Day One off, Dark Faerie Tales is hosting Day Two’s giveaway, I’ll be hosting Day Three’s giveaway, Two Chicks on Books is hosting Day Four’s giveaway, and Tales of the Ravenous Reader is hosting Day Five’s giveaway. So be sure to visit each of our blogs this week to share your post links and enter the giveaways!

The Best Book Covers of 2016

I tried to include only covers for books I’ve read this year, but there are a few books on my TBR pile with covers that I’m madly in love with, so I just had to include them…

#1

BLACK MOON (Zodiac #3) by Romina Russell – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#2

VAMPIRE ACADEMY (10th Anniversary Edition) by Richelle Mead – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUNDGOODREADS


#3

NEMESIS (Nemesis #1) by Anna Banks – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#4

HEARTLESS by Marissa Meyer – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#5

GLASS SWORD (Red Queen #2) by Victoria Aveyard – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#6

BLACKHEARTS (Blackhearts #1) by Nicole Castroman – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#7

FROST LIKE NIGHT (Snow Like Ashes #3) by Sara Raasch – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#8

AND I DARKEN (The Conqueror’s Saga #1) by Kiersten White – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#9

THE FLAME NEVER DIES (The Stars Never Rise #2) by Rachel Vincent – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#10

A MILLION WORLDS WITH YOU (Firebird #3) by Claudia Gray – AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


And once again because I didn’t read a ton of books this year and have already favorited covers for books still on my TBR pile, I have not put together a list of honorable mentions. Though if I had, I would have definitely included the covers for THE WINNER’S KISS by Marie Rutkoski and CROOKED KINGDOMS by Leigh Bardugo.


Link up

Leave a link to your Best Book Covers in 2016 posts in the Linky List below…


Top 10 of 2016: Best Books I’ve Read in 2016

Welcome to Day One of the Top 10 of 2016

A WEEK OF LOOKING BACK…

…AND LOOKING FORWARD

I can’t believe that I’ve been co-hosting this event for six years with Jaime of Two Chicks on Books and three years with Nancy of Tales of the Ravenous Reader! And while I’m so sad that Mindy won’t be joining us this year, I’m thrilled that Bridget of Dark Faerie Tales has joined the team, as has Nancy’s blog partner, Christy.

I haven’t read a ton of books this year, or blogged very much, so I almost decided not to participate. But this event is so much fun that I just couldn’t miss out.

If you haven’t yet heard of the Top 10 of 2016 week-long event, in a nutshell it’s where we share our favorite bookish lists and invite you to share yours over the next five days by leaving your post links in the daily Linky Lists.

Yet again, we’re each hosting our own giveaways on four of the five days of this challenge – We’re taking Day One off, Dark Faerie Tales is hosting Day Two’s giveaway, I’ll be hosting Day Three’s giveaway, Two Chicks on Books is hosting Day Four’s giveaway, and Tales of the Ravenous Reader is hosting Day Five’s giveaway. So be sure to visit each of our blogs this week to share your post links and enter the giveaways!

The Best Books I’ve Read in 2016

While I haven’t read nearly as many books this year as last year – I still have so many, many must read books to read – I have read some pretty amazing books. And while choosing just ten was not at all easy, it was even harder figuring out the order…

#1

An ending that will kill you….

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Title & Series: ARCANA RISING (The Arcana Chronicles #4)
Author: Kresley Cole
Release date: August 15, 2016
Publisher: Valkyrie Press
Pages: 280
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook

Description…

Losses mount and deadly new threats converge in this next action-packed tale of the Arcana Chronicles by #1 New York Times bestselling author Kresley Cole.

When the battle is done . . . 
The Emperor unleashes hell and annihilates an army, jeopardizing the future of mankind–but Circe strikes back. The epic clash between them devastates the Arcana world and nearly kills Evie, separating her from her allies.

And all hope is lost . . . 
With Aric missing and no sign that Jack and Selena escaped Richter’s reach, Evie turns more and more to the darkness lurking inside her. Two Arcana emerge as game changers: one who could be her salvation, the other her worst nightmare.

Vengeance becomes everything.
To take on Richter, Evie must reunite with Death and mend their broken bond. But as she learns more about her role in the future–and her chilling past–will she become a monster like the Emperor? Or can Evie and her allies rise up from Richter’s ashes, stronger than ever before?

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#2

A kick-a** read with an amazing quest…

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Title: NIGHTINGALE, SING
Author: Karsten Knight
Release date: February 23, 2016
Publisher: CreateSpace
Pages: 288
Formats: Paperback, eBook

Description…

To cure her dying sister, Sabra Tides must race to solve a web of riddles and find a mythical flower, while a ruthless gangster will stop at nothing to get there first. This powerful YA thriller is perfect for fans of The Raven Boys, Six of Crows, and The Conspiracy of Us.
*******
A STREETWISE VIGILANTE
who will do anything to cure her dying sister

A RUTHLESS GANGSTER
on a grisly quest to attain immortality

A DESPERATE FATHER
who crossed oceans to free his enslaved son

A TRAIL OF RIDDLES
and the mythical treasure they all seek:

THE SERENGETI SAPPHIRE

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOKS-A-MILLION | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#3

An awesome, nail-biting, fast-paced and unputdownable sequel…

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Title & Series: THE FLAME NEVER DIES (The Stars Never Rise #2)
Author: Rachel Vincent
Release date: August 16, 2016
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Pages: 352
Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Description…

One spark will rise.

Nina Kane was born to be an exorcist. And since uncovering the horrifying truth—that the war against demons is far from over—seventeen-year-old Nina and her pregnant younger sister, Mellie, have been on the run, incinerating the remains of the demon horde as they go.

In the badlands, Nina, Mellie, and Finn, the fugitive and rogue exorcist who saved her life, find allies in a group of freedom fighters. They also face a new threat: Pandemonia, a city full of demons. But this fresh new hell is the least of Nina’s worries. The well of souls ran dry more than a century ago, drained by the demons secretly living among humans, and without a donor soul, Mellie’s child will die within hours of its birth.

Nina isn’t about to let that happen…even if it means she has to make the ultimate sacrifice.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#4

An original, dark and bloody good first installment…

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Title & Series: VIAL THINGS (Resurrectionist #1)
Author: Leah Clifford
Release date: August 9, 2016
Publisher: Self-published
Pages: 221
Formats: eBook

Description…

When the resurrectionists of Fissure’s Whipp begin disappearing, eighteen-year-old Allie knows someone is after their blood—or, more accurately, the genetic mutation that allows their blood to heal wounds, save lives and even bring back the recently deceased.

Raised by her aunt after her parents’ deaths, Allie knows staying vigilant means staying alive. She’s trained her whole life to protect herself by any means necessary, from self defense classes to extensive weapons training in knives. Now, she’s gone so far as to befriend a homeless boy named Ploy who unknowingly trades a few nights a week on her couch in exchange for being a human tripwire to those hunting her.

But as Allie and Ploy’s feelings for each other grow, Allie realizes this time, she’ll need more than fighting skills and a sharp blade to beat a villain literally out for blood.

Protecting a girl he shouldn’t love, from a threat he understands too well, Ploy must face his past to save his future in Allie’s world—a world where bringing back the dead can cost you your life.

AMAZON | GOODREADS


#5

An enchanting and magical read…

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Title & Series: REIGN OF SHADOWS (Reign of Shadows #1)
Author: Sophie Jordan
Release date: February 9, 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 304
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#6

A heartbreaking and epic adventure…

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Title: HEARTLESS
Author: Marissa Meyer
Release date: November 8, 2016
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Pages: 464
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland and a favorite of the unmarried King, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, she wants to open a shop and create delectable pastries. But for her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for a woman who could be a queen.

At a royal ball where Cath is expected to receive the King’s marriage proposal, she meets handsome and mysterious Jest. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the King and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into a secret courtship.

Cath is determined to choose her own destiny. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#7

An emotional, heartbreaking and intense read…

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Title & Series: THE WAY I USED TO BE
Author: Amber Smith
Release date: March 22, 2016
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Pages: 384
Formats: Hardcover, audio, eBook

Description…

In the tradition of Speak, this extraordinary debut novel shares the unforgettable story of a young woman as she struggles to find strength in the aftermath of an assault.

Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.

What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year—this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman’s strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#8

An imaginative, beautifully told and heartbreaking tale…

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Title & Series: ROSEBLOOD
Author: A.G. Howard
Release date: January 10, 2017
Publisher: Amulet Books
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook

Description…

In this modern day spin on Leroux’s gothic tale of unrequited love turned to madness, seventeen-year-old Rune Germain has a mysterious affliction linked to her operatic talent, and a horrifying mistake she’s trying to hide. Hoping creative direction will help her, Rune’s mother sends her to a French arts conservatory for her senior year, located in an opera house rumored to have ties to The Phantom of the Opera.

At RoseBlood, Rune secretly befriends the masked Thorn—an elusive violinist who not only guides her musical transformation through dreams that seem more real than reality itself, but somehow knows who she is behind her own masks. As the two discover an otherworldly connection and a soul-deep romance blossoms, Thorn’s dark agenda comes to light and he’s forced to make a deadly choice: lead Rune to her destruction, or face the wrath of the phantom who has haunted the opera house for a century, and is the only father he’s ever known.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#9

A breathtaking and emotional rollercoaster…

Add to Goodreads

Title & Series: THE ROSE & THE DAGGER (The Wrath and the Dawn #2)
Author: Renée Ahdieh
Release date: April 26, 2016
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Pages: 432
Formats: Hardcover, paperback, audio, eBook

Description…

The darker the sky, the brighter the stars.

In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad is forced from the arms of her beloved husband, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once thought Khalid a monster—a merciless killer of wives, responsible for immeasurable heartache and pain—but as she unraveled his secrets, she found instead an extraordinary man and a love she could not deny. Still, a curse threatens to keep Shazi and Khalid apart forever.

Now she’s reunited with her family, who have found refuge in the desert, where a deadly force is gathering against Khalid—a force set on destroying his empire and commanded by Shazi’s spurned childhood sweetheart. Trapped between loyalties to those she loves, the only thing Shazi can do is act. Using the burgeoning magic within her as a guide, she strikes out on her own to end both this terrible curse and the brewing war once and for all. But to do it, she must evade enemies of her own to stay alive.

The saga that began with The Wrath and the Dawn takes its final turn as Shahrzad risks everything to find her way back to her one true love again.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


#10

A spellbinding, romantic, pirate-in-the-making story…

Add to Goodreads

Title & Series: BLACKHEARTS (Blackhearts #1)
Author: Nicole Castroman
Release date: February 9, 2016
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 384
Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Description…

Blackbeard the pirate was known for striking fear in the hearts of the bravest of sailors. But once he was just a young man who dreamed of leaving his rigid life behind to chase adventure in faraway lands. Nothing could stop him—until he met the one girl who would change everything.

Edward “Teach” Drummond, son of one of Bristol’s richest merchants, has just returned from a year-long journey on the high seas to find his life in shambles. Betrothed to a girl he doesn’t love and sick of the high society he was born into, Teach dreams only of returning to the vast ocean he’d begun to call home. There’s just one problem: convincing his father to let him leave and never come back.

Following her parents’ deaths, Anne Barrett is left penniless and soon to be homeless. Though she’s barely worked a day in her life, Anne is forced to take a job as a maid in the home of Master Drummond. Lonely days stretch into weeks, and Anne longs for escape. How will she ever realize her dream of sailing to Curaçao—where her mother was born—when she’s stuck in England?

From the moment Teach and Anne meet, they set the world ablaze. Drawn to each other, they’re trapped by society and their own circumstances. Faced with an impossible choice, they must decide to chase their dreams and go, or follow their hearts and stay.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | GOODREADS


And as I haven’t read all that many books in 2016 I’ve decided for the first time ever not to do an honorable mentions list… though there are so many that deserve it.


Link up

Leave a link to your Best Books I’ve Read in 2016 posts in the Linky List below…




BLACKHEARTS Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway

Blackhearts

BLACKHEARTS comes out tomorrow and I cannot wait for everyone to read it and meet Anne and Teach. It’s such a gorgeous and romantic and heartbreaking story I just know everyone will fall in love with and will be as hopeful as I am that there will be a sequel.

But until your copy lands in your mailbox, on your eReader, or shows up on the shelves of your local bookstores, you should totally check out the other stops on the tour to read a few interviews with and guest posts by Nicole Castroman to learn more about BLACKHEARTS. There are also a few reviews, including mine which is below, so if you want to see what a few bloggers think about this awesome book before you read it, be sure to take a peek at these stops, too.

And if you want the chance to win a SIGNED copy of BLACKHEARTS, don’t forget to enter in the Rafflecopter a bit further down in the post.


About BLACKHEARTS

Blackhearts_Cover

Add to Goodreads

Title: BLACKHEARTS
Author: Nicole Castroman
Release date: February 9, 2016
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Pages: 384
Formats: Hardcover, eBook

Description…

In this stunningly creative debut, Nicole Castroman reimagines the origins of history’s most infamous pirate—Blackbeard—and tells the story of the girl who captured his heart and then broke it, setting him on a path to destruction.

When Edward “Teach” Drummond, son of one of Bristol’s richest merchants, returns home from a year at sea, he finds his life in shambles. Betrothed to a girl he doesn’t love and sick of the high society he was born into, all Teach wants is to return to the vast ocean he calls home. There’s just one problem: he must convince his father to let him leave and never come back.

Following the death of her parents, Anne Barrett is left penniless. Though she’s barely worked a day in her life, Anne takes a job as a maid in the home of Master Drummond. Lonely days stretch into weeks and Anne longs to escape the confines of her now mundane life. How will she ever achieve her dream of sailing to Curaçao—her mother’s birthplace—when she’s trapped in England?

From the moment Teach and Anne meet, they set the world ablaze. Drawn together by a shared desire for freedom, but kept apart by Teach’s father, their love is as passionate as it is forbidden. Faced with an impossible choice, Teach and Anne must decide whether to chase their dreams and leave England forever—or follow their hearts and stay together.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | iTUNES | INDIEBOUND | SIMON & SCHUSTER | GOODREADS

Note: This review is based on an eARC received from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for my honest thoughts about the book.


The Review

Whether you’ve always been curious to know more about Blackbeard before he became such a notorious pirate or your interest was piqued after reading this book’s description, Nicole Castroman’s BLACKHEARTS promises to more than satisfy. The author’s imagining of Teach’s earlier life with the girl who captured his heart reveals a life that is just as exciting as his life at sea. Deception, betrayal, secrets, lies, and forbidden romance are only a handful of the things that await readers and characters alike in this riveting tale.

Anne Barrett was looking for any way to escape the prison that was the Drummond household. She did not fit in with the other staff and being a maid would never earn her the money she needed to afford passage on a ship headed to the West Indies, a place she thought she might be able to call home.

She had a plan. It was risky. And while she knew there was a real chance it would fall apart, that she’d be captured and forced to stay, she never imagined having a reason she might want to.

Edward Drummond hated the fact that he had to return home to a job he didn’t enjoy and a life he didn’t want. His time at sea didn’t quench his thirst for it, rather it ignited a passion in him to captain a ship, set sail, and leave the land behind.

But with a promise made that his father is dead set on ensuring he keep, a plan for his future that has already been mapped out, and no means of securing a ship on his own, it seems his dream of a life at sea will only ever be that. A dream. And while he wants to honor his commitments, the prospect of living a life on land feels like a fate worse than death. At least until he meets a girl just as alluring as the sea.

Nicole Castroman imagined a story that is stunning and romantic and heartbreaking and spellbinding. It has moments that are funny and heartwarming and others that are nail-biting and suspenseful. Its two main characters, Anne and Teach, are immensely likable. It offers a couple of twists to keep things interesting. And it delivers a conclusion that will leave you desperate for more.

BLACKHEARTS is not a pirate story, but rather a pirate-in-the-making story. And while there are no swashbuckling tales of adventure on the high seas for Anne and Teach, there is definitely some adventure and plenty of romance. It is a beautifully written, remarkably well-researched, gorgeous must-must-must read that weaves together fact with fiction to bring to life many of the missing pieces from one of history’s most famous pirates.

The Rating

05


About Nicole Castroman

Nicole Castroman

Nicole was lucky enough to come with her very own best friend…she has a twin sister who can read her mind and finish her sentences for her.

At the age of 13, she went to Europe for the first time and it changed her life. She loves learning about different people, languages and cultures and speaks fluent German. She knows enough Spanish to get herself into trouble and can still read the Cyrillic alphabet from when she studied Russian.

She received her B.A. from Brigham Young University and has lived in Germany, Austria and two different places called Georgia. One is the country located on the Black Sea. The other is the state of Georgia where she now lives with her handsome husband and two beautiful children who continue to amaze her.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAMPINTEREST | GOODREADS


The Giveaway

There is a tour-wide giveaway for…

  • ONE (1) winner will receive a signed finished copy of BLACKHEARTS – US only

Enter in the Rafflecopter below…

a Rafflecopter giveaway


The Tour Schedule

Week One

Week Two


Top 10 of 2015: Books I’m Looking Forward to in 2016

Top10_horizontal

Welcome to Day Five of the Top 10 of 2105

A WEEK OF LOOKING BACK…

…AND LOOKING FORWARD

As I mentioned previously…

This is my fifth year co-hosting this event with Jaime of Two Chicks on Books, my fourth year co-hosting with Mindy of Magical Urban Fantasy Reads, and my second year co-hosting with Nancy of Tales of a Ravenous Reader. Wow that’s a lot of years. But this event is so much fun, that I’m thrilled to be able to do it again in 2015.

If you haven’t yet heard of the Top 10 of 2015 week-long event, in a nutshell it’s where we share our favorite bookish lists and invite you to share yours over the next five days by leaving your post links in the daily Linky Lists.

Once again, we’re each hosting our own giveaways on four of the five days of this challenge – I’m hosting Day One’s giveaway, Two Chicks on Books is hosting Day Two’s giveaway, Tales of a Ravenous Reading is hosting Day Three’s giveaway, and Magical Urban Fantasy Reads is hosting today’s Day Four giveaway. So be sure to check in with each of our blogs this week.


Books I Can’t Wait For

Today’s topic is…

Books I’m Looking Forward to in 2016

I am looking forward to so many books in the coming year – so many continuing series and so many new releases. And so, as to be fair to all those new releases (as I tend to favor continuing series because I’m already invested), I’m doing two top 10 lists – one for continuing series and one for new standalones and series books.

And of course I couldn’t resist including a few honorable mentions for some of the many continuing series I am desperately eager to read in 2016.


Top Ten Continuing Series Books

#1

TheFlameNeverDiesTHE FLAME NEVER DIES (The Stars Never Rise #2) by Rachel Vincent

Release date: August 16, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

ONE SPARK WILL RISE. Nina Kane was born to be an exorcist. And since uncovering the horrifying truth—that the war against demons is far from over—seventeen-year-old Nina and her pregnant younger sister, Mellie, have been on the run, incinerating the remains of the demon horde as they go.

In the badlands, Nina, Mellie, and Finn, the fugitive and rogue exorcist who saved her life, find allies in a group of freedom fighters. They also face a new threat: Pandemonia, a city full of demons. But this fresh new hell is the least of Nina’s worries. The well of souls ran dry more than a century ago, drained by the demons secretly living among humans, and without a donor soul, Mellie’s child will die within hours of its birth.

Nina isn’t about to let that happen . . . even if it means she has to make the ultimate sacrifice.


#2

UNTITLED (The Arcana Chronicles #4) by Kresley Cole

Release date: May 31, 2016

Find it: Goodreads


#3

MASQUERADE (Menagerie #2) by Rachel Vincent

Release date: Fall 2016

Find it: Goodreads


#4

A Tourch Against the NightA TORCH AGAINST THE NIGHT (An Ember in the Ashes #2) by Sabaa Tahir

Release date: August 30, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

A Torch Against the Night takes readers into the heart of the Empire as Laia and Elias fight their way north to liberate Laia’s brother from the horrors of Kauf Prison. Hunted by Empire soldiers, manipulated by the Commandant, and haunted by their pasts, Laia and Elias must outfox their enemies and confront the treacherousness of their own hearts.

In the city of Serra, Helene Aquilla finds herself bound to the will of the Empire’s twisted new leader, Marcus. When her loyalty is questioned, Helene finds herself taking on a mission to prove herself—a mission that might destroy her, instead.


#5

TheWinnersKissTHE WINNER’S KISS (The Winner’s Trilogy #3) by Marie Rutkoski

Release date: March 29, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

War has begun. Arin is in the thick of it, with the East as his ally and the empire as his enemy. He’s finally managed to dismiss the memory of Kestrel, even if he can’t quite forget her. Kestrel turned into someone he could no longer recognize: someone who cared more for the empire than for the lives of innocent people—and certainly more than she cared for him. At least, that’s what he thinks.

But far north lies a work camp where Kestrel is a prisoner. Can she manage to escape before she loses herself? As the war intensifies, both Kestrel and Arin discover unexpected roles in battle, terrible secrets, and a fragile hope. The world is changing. The East is pitted against the West, and Kestrel and Arin are caught between. In a game like this, can anybody really win?


#6

The King SlayerTHE KING SLAYER (The Witch Hunter #2) by Virginia Boecker

Release date: June 14, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Magic, suspense, and political intrigue collide in this sequel to The Witch Hunter, perfect for fans of Graceling and the Grisha Trilogy.

Former witch hunter Elizabeth Grey is hiding within the magically protected village of Harrow, evading the price put on her head by Lord Blackwell, the usurper king of Anglia. Their last encounter left Blackwell ruined, but his thirst for power grows stronger every day. He’s readying for a war against those who would resist his rule–namely Elizabeth and the witches, wizards, pirates, and healers she now calls her friends.

Having lost her stigma, a magical source of protection and healing, Elizabeth’s strength is tested both physically and emotionally. War always means sacrifice, and as the lines between good and evil blur once more, Elizabeth must decide just how far she’ll go to save those she loves.

In this sequel to The Witch Hunter, Virginia Boecker delivers a powerful story full of action, suspense, camaraderie, and romance.


#7

Glass SwordGLASS SWORD (Red Queen #2) by Victoria Aveyard

Release date: February 9, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

Mare Barrow’s blood is red—the color of common folk—but her Silver ability, the power to control lightning, has turned her into a weapon that the royal court tries to control.

The crown calls her an impossibility, a fake, but as she makes her escape from Maven, the prince—the friend—who betrayed her, Mare uncovers something startling: she is not the only one of her kind.

Pursued by Maven, now a vindictive king, Mare sets out to find and recruit other Red-and-Silver fighters to join in the struggle against her oppressors.

But Mare finds herself on a deadly path, at risk of becoming exactly the kind of monster she is trying to defeat.

Will she shatter under the weight of the lives that are the cost of rebellion? Or have treachery and betrayal hardened her forever?


#8

UNTITLED (Firebird #3) by Claudia Gray

Release date: 2016

Find it: Goodreads


#9

CROOKED KINGDOM (Six of Crows #2) by Leigh Bardugo

Release date: September 22, 2016

Find it: Goodreads


#10

TRAITOR’S PYRE (The Worldwalker Trilogy #3) by Josephine Angelini

Release date:

Find it: Goodreads


The Honorable Mentions
  • FROST LIKE NIGHT (Snow Like Ashes #3) by Sara Raasch – Goodreads
  • ENDURE (Defy #3) by Sara B. Larson – Goodreads
  • UNTITLED (The Young Elites #3) by Marie Lu – Goodreads
  • THE ROSE AND THE DAGGER (The Wrath and the Dawn #2) by Renee Ahdieh – Goodreads
  • THE RULE OF MIRRORS (The Vault of Dreamers #2) by Caragh M. O’Brien – Goodreads
  • CLANLESS (Nameless #2) by Jennifer Jenkins – Goodreads

Top Ten New Releases

#1

BlackheartsCoverBLACKHEARTS by Nicole Castroman

Release date: February 9, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

Blackbeard the pirate was known for striking fear in the hearts of the bravest of sailors. But once he was just a young man who dreamed of leaving his rigid life behind to chase adventure in faraway lands. Nothing could stop him—until he met the one girl who would change everything.

Edward “Teach” Drummond, son of one of Bristol’s richest merchants, has just returned from a year-long journey on the high seas to find his life in shambles. Betrothed to a girl he doesn’t love and sick of the high society he was born into, Teach dreams only of returning to the vast ocean he’d begun to call home. There’s just one problem: convincing his father to let him leave and never come back.

Following her parents’ deaths, Anne Barrett is left penniless and soon to be homeless. Though she’s barely worked a day in her life, Anne is forced to take a job as a maid in the home of Master Drummond. Lonely days stretch into weeks, and Anne longs for escape. How will she ever realize her dream of sailing to Curaçao—where her mother was born—when she’s stuck in England?

From the moment Teach and Anne meet, they set the world ablaze. Drawn to each other, they’re trapped by society and their own circumstances. Faced with an impossible choice, they must decide to chase their dreams and go, or follow their hearts and stay.


#2

And I DarkenAND I DARKEN (The Conquerors Saga #1) by Kiersten White

Release date: June 28, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

NO ONE EXPECTS A PRINCESS TO BE BRUTAL. And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, who’s expected to rule a nation, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.


#3

PassengerCoverPASSENGER (Passenger #1) by Alexandra Bracken

Release date: January 5, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

passage, n.
i. A brief section of music composed of a series of notes and flourishes.
ii. A journey by water; a voyage.
iii. The transition from one place to another, across space and time.

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has traveled not just miles but years from home. And she’s inherited a legacy she knows nothing about from a family whose existence she’s never heard of. Until now.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods—a powerful family in the colonies—and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go so easily. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, Nicholas’ passenger, can find. In order to protect her, he must ensure she brings it back to them— whether she wants to or not.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveler who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are play­ing, treacherous forces threaten to sep­arate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home . . . forever.


#4

Salt to the SeaSALT TO THE SEA by Ruta Sepetys

Release date: February 2, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

The author of Between Shades of Gray returns to WWII in this epic novel that shines a light on one of the war’s most devastating—yet unknown—tragedies.

In 1945, World War II is drawing to a close in East Prussia, and thousands of refugees are on a desperate trek toward freedom, almost all of them with something to hide. Among them are Joana, Emilia, and Florian, whose paths converge en route to the ship that promises salvation, the Wilhelm Gustloff. Forced by circumstance to unite, the three find their strength, courage, and trust in each other tested with each step closer toward safety.

Just when it seems freedom is within their grasp, tragedy strikes. Not country, nor culture, nor status matter as all ten thousand people aboard must fight for the same thing: survival.


#5

Reign of Shadows CoverREIGN OF SHADOWS (Reign of Shadows #1) by Sophie Jordan

Release date: February 9, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

Seventeen years ago, an eclipse cloaked the kingdom of Relhok in perpetual darkness. In the chaos, an evil chancellor murdered the king and queen and seized their throne. Luna, Relhok’s lost princess, has been hiding in a tower ever since. Luna’s survival depends on the world believing she is dead.

But that doesn’t stop Luna from wanting more. When she meets Fowler, a mysterious archer braving the woods outside her tower, Luna is drawn to him despite the risk. When the tower is attacked, Luna and Fowler escape together. But this world of darkness is more treacherous than Luna ever realized.

With every threat stacked against them, Luna and Fowler find solace in each other. But with secrets still unspoken between them, falling in love might be their most dangerous journey yet.


#6

Sword and Verse CoverSWORD AND VERSE by Kathy MacMillan

Release date: January 19, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

Raisa was just a child when she was sold to work as a slave in the kingdom of Qilara. Despite her young age, her father was teaching her to read and write, grooming her to take his place as a Learned One. In Qilara, the Arnathim, like Raisa, are the lowest class, and literacy is a capital offense. What’s more, only the king, prince, tutor, and tutor-in-training are allowed to learn the very highest order language, the language of the gods. So when the tutor-in-training is executed for teaching slaves this sacred language, and Raisa is selected to replace her, Raisa knows any slipup on her part could mean death.

Keeping her secret is hard enough, but the romance that’s been growing between her and Prince Mati isn’t helping matters. Then Raisa is approached by the Resistance—an underground army of slave rebels—to help liberate Arnath slaves. She wants to free her people, but that would mean aiding a war against Mati. As Raisa struggles with what to do, she discovers a secret that the Qilarites have been hiding for centuries—one that, if uncovered, could bring the kingdom to its knees.


#7

Assassin's HeartASSASSIN’S HEART by Sarah Ahiers

Release date: February 2, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

In the kingdom of Lovero, nine rival Families of assassins lawfully kill people for a price. As a highly skilled member of one of these powerful clans, seventeen-year-old Lea Saldana has always trusted in the strength of her Family. Until she awakens to find them murdered and her home in flames. The Da Vias, the Saldanas’ biggest enemy, must be responsible—and Lea should have seen it coming. But her secret relationship with the Da Vias’ son, Val, has clouded her otherwise killer instinct—and given the Da Vias more reason than ever to take her Family down.

Racked with guilt and shattered over Val’s probable betrayal, Lea sets out to even the score, with her heart set on retaliation and only one thought clear in her mind: make the Da Vias pay.

With shades of The Godfather and Romeo and Juliet, this richly imagined fantasy from debut author Sarah Ahiers is a story of love, lies, and the ultimate vengeance.


#8

Burning GlassBURNING GLASS by Kathryn Purdie

Release date: March 1, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

Sonya was born with the rare gift to feel what those around her feel—both physically and emotionally—a gift she’s kept hidden from the empire for seventeen long years. After a reckless mistake wipes out all the other girls with similar abilities, Sonya is hauled off to the palace and forced to serve the emperor as his sovereign Auraseer.

Tasked with sensing the intentions of would-be assassins, Sonya is under constant pressure to protect the emperor. One mistake, one small failure, will cost her own life and the lives of the few people left in the world who still trust her.

But Sonya’s power is untamed and reckless, her feelings easily usurped, and she sometimes can’t decipher when other people’s impulses end and her own begin. In a palace full of warring emotions and looming darkness, Sonya fears that the biggest danger to the empire may be herself.

As she struggles to wrangle her abilities, Sonya seeks refuge in her tenuous alliances with the volatile Emperor Valko and his idealistic younger brother, Anton, the crown prince. But when threats of revolution pit the two brothers against each other, Sonya must choose which brother to trust—and which to betray.

BURNING GLASS is debut author Kathryn Purdie’s stunning tale of dangerous magic, heart-rending romance, and the hard-won courage it takes to let go.


#9

The Crown's GameTHE CROWN’S GAME (The Crown’s Game #1) by Evelyn Skye

Release date: May 17, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.

And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.

Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?

For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.

And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love . . . or be killed himself.

As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear . . . the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.


#10

The Way I Used to BeTHE WAY I USED TO BE by Amber Smith

Release date: March 22, 2016

Find it: Goodreads

Description…

In the tradition of Speak, this extraordinary debut novel shares the unforgettable story of a young woman as she struggles to find strength in the aftermath of an assault.

Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.

What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year—this provocative debut reveals the deep cuts of trauma. But it also demonstrates one young woman’s strength as she navigates the disappointment and unbearable pains of adolescence, of first love and first heartbreak, of friendships broken and rebuilt, and while learning to embrace a power of survival she never knew she had hidden within her heart.


So, those are the books I’m most looking forward to in 2016. What are yours?

Leave a link to your Books I’m Looking Forward to in 2016 posts in the Linky List below…




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