My Favorite Books of 2018 (Part 1)

Posted January 4, 2019 by Booksandblurbs in Favorite Collections, PNR, Reverse Harem, Reviews, Urban Fantasy, YA / 1 Comment

My Favorite Books of 2018 - Part 1! #RH #Slowburn #Reverseharem #UrbandFantasy #ParanormalRomance

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This list was HARD to write!! I read so many (and not so great) great books in 2018! I discovered new and amazing authors, joined new FB groups just for the recommendations and spurred my Goodreads account into high gear! All in all, it was a busy reading year for me… which makes compiling any sort of ‘favorites’ list a tall order. That said, after careful deliberation, here are My Top Favorite Books of 2018! Please note that these are not ALL newly published books in 2018, just new to me.

Oh, and I’m cheating a bit… these are actually series’ of books – I am encompassing the entire series in the listings, though I will link to just the first ones.

Now on to the list! Though I am numbering these for ease of reading, they all hold the top spot in my heart.

#1 – Rise of the Iliri Series, Books 1-8 by Auryn Hadley

My Top 10 Favorite Books of 2018 - Bloodlust, book 1 in Rise of the Iliri series. #RH #Whychoose #PNR

BloodLust (Rise of the Iliri Series – Book 1)

By Auryn Hadley

slow-burn, Sci-FI, Fantasy RH

Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

While I’ve linked to just the first book in this expansive series, I am ranking ALL of the books on ‘Favorite Books of 2018’ list – all 8 of them. Rise of the Iliri is one of those series’ that grabs you, holds you and never lets go. It’s hard to summarize decently, as this is an epic fantasy that literally builds around you as you fall deeper into the history and lore that is this sweeping world.. but I will try.

The Iliri are a pallid race of humanoid people on a distant planet, a people that hold stronger and more refined senses than their human counterparts. They can see farther, hear better, move faster and think quicker… all traits that make them exceedingly good soldiers. They are also a repressed people, downtrodden and enslaved on a world that considers them no better than animals. For Salryc Luxx, one of the few purebred Iliri left, joining the Black Blades, an elite unit in the army, is the only chance she may ever at freedom – or at least at making her death count for something.

This is not only her story, but the story of the entire Iliri people – where they came from, who they are, and what their future may hold along side the humans who have treated them so poorly. Sweeping across nations and lush with history and romance, this series spans the gamut of the soul and plucks the strings of emotion and action effortlessly. As the pages progress, Sal comes alive – breathing through the words with conviction and passion, as do those who surround, and love her.

Currently, there are 8 books in print with a total of 10 planned, though I wonder if Sal’s epic tale can truly be told in just 10 volumes. Be prepared to invest some time, as each novel touts a hefty page length and enough detail to keep even the most arduous plot devotee busy. Oh, and the book hangover is very, very real.

Please note, this is considered a Reverse Harem Series and feature sexual content more suited to mature audiences. 

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#2 – The Veil Diaries Series Books 1-6 by B.L. Brunnemer

Favorite Books of 2018 - The Veil Diaries #RH #YA #Urbanfantasy

Trying to Live With the Dead (The Veil Diaries Series – Book 1)

By B.L. Brunnemer 

slow-burn, YA, Urban Fantasy, RH

Available on Kindle 

Again, like the previous entry, though I am linking just the first book in a series, this entire collection is worthy of my Favorite Books of 2018 list.

Alexis (Lexie) Delanley is a 17 year old student with a strange and unusual power – she can see the dead. Well, she can see them and interact with them, even push them if she must. But they can also interact with her – and that can get very dangerous, very quickly. This series revolves around Lexie learning more about her powers, the veil that separates the living from the dead, and navigating the complex, yet heartfelt, friendships she is developing with a group of guys determined to protect her. Through the adventures that happen in each book, they grow as individuals and as a group, each finding their way in an increasingly complicated, supernatural, world.

This is an amazing series that explores the heart and the reasons we make the choices we do. Lexie is a strong character who is made stronger by her situation, and by her friends. Though this is technically classified as a RH series, it isn’t… not yet at least. Not in the terms of sexual contact – this is a YA series and follows those rules. From what I understand, it will not start hinting at more mature content until it makes the jump to NA, when the characters are a touch older. Right now, there are 6 books out, with 10-15 (??? – I’ve seen various #’s on this) planned in the YA series.

If you DO check it out (please do… you won’t be disappointed) be sure to check out the FB Group: Beyond the Veil, it features behind the scenes, bonus content and various bonus POV’s – plus a wealth of theories from readers. I can get lost on that page for hours!

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#3 – Curse of the God’s Series, Books 1-5 by Jane Washington

My Favorite Books of 2018 - Curse of the God's Series by Jane Washington

Trickery (Curse of the Gods Series – Book 1)

By Jaymin Eve and Jane Washington

slow-burn, PNR, RH

Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

Willa Knight is a dweller, a non-magical being in a very magical world featuring Actual Gods and the Almost Gods knows as the sols. As a Dweller, it is her job to care for the sols, in fact, it should be her pride and joy to do so. Unfortunately, Willa isn’t a very good Dweller. She’s clumsy, stubborn, disaster prone and far too outspoken to be a proper Dweller. Luckily, her home in an outer ring village is far from the sacred halls of the sols, meaning she will never be forced to scrape and humble herself before those shining fools. Or so she thinks. When a prank goes awry, Willa finds herself ‘chosen’ to join the fortunate Dwellers at Blesswood Academy, where she will serve and attend to the needs of the elite sols, including the mischief hungry Abcurse Brothers….. what could possibly go wrong?

This series is hysterical from start to finish. Filled with quirky humor, political intrigue and just the right amount of tension, it is sure to keeps you reading far past your bedtime.

Please note, this is considered a Reverse Harem Series and feature sexual content more suited to mature audiences. 

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#4 – Nora Jacobs Series by Jackie May

Favorite Books of 2018 -Don't Rush Me by Jackie May #Slowburn #RH #UrbanFantasy

Don’t Rush Me (Nora Jacobs Series – Book 1)

By Jackie May

Slow-burn RH, Urban Fantasy

Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

This debut novel by a husband and wife writing duo is a smash in terms of style, creativity and world building. Nora Jacobs knows about the Underworld and the things that lurk in the shadows… but she doesn’t want to know about it. In fact, she would much rather have nothing to do with it! Unfortunately, Nora is blessed, or cursed, with her own touch of Psychic ability – an ability that drags her kicking and screaming into the dark Underworld of supernatural creatures, nightmares and intrigue.

With only two books out in the series so far, Jackie May is building the right amount of tension between Nora and the supernatural guys that surround her, while doling out enough action to keep you hooked. There is a slow moving reveal that permeates the pages, hinting at secrets that lie beneath each books main plot – secrets that may literally make you pull your hair out at the end of book 2!

It’s a great series which features familiar characters in a unique light, taking the well loved tropes and turning them just a bit sideways and presenting them in a fresh, new way that makes this series a delight to read. You should also check out “The Devil to Pay” – a spin off novel set in the same world with a different, and equally unique, heroine.

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#5 – Variant Lost (The Evelyn Maynard Trilogy Book 1) by Kaydence Snow

Favorite Books of 2018 - Variant Lost by Kaydence Snow

Variant Lost (The Evelyn Maynard Trilogy Book 1)

By Kaydence Snow

Slow-burn RH, YA/NA, Urban Fantasy

Available on Kindle and Kindle Unlimited

Another debut novel, Variant Lost is the first in a Trilogy that promises to make big waves in the Urban Fantasy field.

First, I HATE reading the start of a series when the rest are still in the works – especially when they catch me as quickly as this one did! Now, I have to wait till later this year to continue this saga, but judging by the quality of Variant Lost, it will be worth the wait.

This book takes everything I love about RH, paranormal, science fiction and romance, throws it in a blender and pours out a smooth narrative that flows with mystery, excitement and revelation. Eve has been running her entire life, pulled along through danger and fake ID’s by a mother who truly only wants what is best for her daughter – even if Eve doesn’t understand why. Those drastic measures are halted when tragedy strikes and Eve finds herself drifting, completely alone in a world ripe with gifted humans and forces far more dangerous than she can imagine.

When fate sends an invitation to her door, Eve takes a chance to attend an elite academy where those gifted humans, variants, train their abilities alongside the few ungifted humans smart enough to keep up. Blessed with an over abundance of curiosity and brain power, Eve finds herself in the later category and is determined to gain as much experience and education as the school can provide.

Yet fate is far from done with Eve and soon secrets long buried and talents unknown pull her into the fray – and into a life she can barely imagine.

Fast flowing and well crafted, Variant Lost hits all the right notes and will leave you eager for the next installment.

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I’m cutting the list here – since it is already so long, and there are just way too many books I want to put on this Favorite Books of 2018 list! So consider this Part 1… to be continued.

If you have enjoyed this list, please be sure to check out some of my other articles!

Your turn:

What were your favorite books of 2018? Have you read any of the ones I listed? Have any other recommendations for me? Let me know! I am always on the hunt for new and exciting tales to fill my Kindle!!

 

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