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Archive (general & ongoing) > February 2016 in Reflection - Best and Worst Reads

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message 1: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments Let's reflect on the best and worst of the previous month's books.....

I know I can get so focused on what is next that I forget about all the wonderful books I read for the previous month's challenges! We had an extra day in the shortest month this year,
I used mine for reading!

Did you find some gems? DNF a few? Find your new book boyfriend or a heroine who personifies TSTL? Come on, we all want to know!

message 2: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments Wow, February is hard for me to make a call on what was best... Several really good ones!

I did a reread of Hearts in Darkness before reading Love in the Light and I loved them both!! Yesterday, I listened to Hard Ever After which was also awesome. Seems like it was a Laura Kaye - fest in February!

Other standouts were Survivor In Death - this one touched me! And Forever Promised, Deep and a couple of Robyn Carr books. A few more even!

I only had one book I really struggled with this month, but in the end I even really liked it too - Overruled. The hero pushed a lot of my buttons, but the author brought him around and made me like him.

message 3: by Connie N. (new)

Connie N. | 1046 comments February was a great month for me for reading, mostly because I went with what I felt like reading and didn't focus a lot on challenge requirements. Which means I read a lot of romance!

I started with Lauren Layne's latest Oxford book, I Wish You Were Mine. This is such a good series with some awesome recurring characters.

A new-to-me author was Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake, which was a 5-star read for me. And I can't wait to continue with this series.

My favorite of the Wilder trilogy by Jill Shalvis was in February: Instant Gratification, which tells Stone's and Emma's story.

For face-to-face bookclub, we finally read a book that was right up my alley. I loved Me Before You. There was so much hype that I thought I might be disappointed, but I definitely wasn't. We all agreed that it was a very enjoyable and thought-provoking story.

I continued a couple of favorite series and still love them to pieces: Fearless Fourteen (Stephanie Plum) and Loyalty in Death (Eve and Roarke). What's not to like about Morelli, Ranger, and Roarke? See what I mean about this being a good month??

Finally, I am lately catching up on another favorite series that I had put aside for a long time. The Sum of All Kisses was totally fun and reminded me why I like Julia Quinn so much.

Thanks for the reminder that I enjoyed the heck out of my reading this past month.

message 4: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments I love Sarah MacLean and Nine Rules to Break When Romancing a Rake was just the beginning! You've got a lot of good books ahead of you! And I almost listed The Sum of All Kisses for February too - it was one of my few mores! I just felt like I was saying everything I read was my favorite - I guess there is nothing wrong with that though!

message 5: by Fran, Moderator (new)

Fran | 11051 comments My favorite read of February was Big Rock by Lauren Blakely Big Rock. This was a fun, cute read - just what I like! I will probably read the next in the series when it comes out :)

The other books of February were all ok, nothing great but no clunkers either.

I'm looking forward to March!

message 6: by Connie N. (last edited Mar 01, 2016 01:44PM) (new)

Connie N. | 1046 comments MountainKat wrote: "And I almost listed The Sum of All Kisses for February too."

I've been reading reviews for the next (and last) in the Smythe-Smith Quartet series. Not sounding too good, I'm afraid, but as I'm often in the minority, I'll reserve judgment until I actually read it myself.

message 7: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments On books like that, that I'm going to read anyway, I really try to avoid reviews. I don't want to know in advance little annoyances that people have with a book or, the flip side, to get my expectations too high that nothing can live up to them.

message 8: by NayNay (new)

NayNay Did you find some gems? DNF a few? Find your new book boyfriend or a heroine who personifies TSTL? Come on, we all want to know!

Well I read 2 really good books this month
Morning Glory by Sarah Jio by Sarah Jio (I just recently found this author and have read 3 of her books, they were amazing reads)
Finding Lyla (The Bodyguards of L.A. County, #10) by Cate Beauman by Cate Beauman (love this series, I have loved all 10 books)

And yes I did get a little book crush with Jean-Paul Dubois in Say You Love Me by Rita Herron by Rita Herron...I mean just his name makes him sexy!!!

message 9: by Mrs.soule (last edited Mar 02, 2016 10:09AM) (new)

Mrs.soule (mrssoule) I had a great time with SciFi this season. All of these were amazing:
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline Silver Shark (Kinsmen, #2) by Ilona Andrews The Fifth Season (The Broken Earth, #1) by N.K. Jemisin Adulthood Rites (Xenogenesis, #2) by Octavia E. Butler Imago (Xenogenesis, #3) by Octavia E. Butler Agatha H and the Airship City (Girl Genius Novels, #1) by Phil Foglio

Discovered an amazing manga series - the art in this one is gorgeous: A Bride's Story, Vol. 1 (A Bride's Story, #1) by Kaoru Mori

Free ebook that was just awesome: Country Heaven (Dare River, #1) by Ava Miles

Five star Non-Fiction:
My Life in France by Julia Child Searching for Sunday Loving, Leaving, and Finding the Church by Rachel Held Evans

This poetry was amazing - my husband even snuck it away from me to share with his co-workers:
The Moon Is Always Female Poems by Marge Piercy

message 10: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments Love that you got a new book boyfriend NayNay!!

What a diverse list Mrs.soule!

message 11: by Anita Reads (last edited Mar 03, 2016 04:58AM) (new)

Anita Reads | 170 comments I finished quite a few 5 star books this month:
Conspiracy in Death (In Death, #8) by J.D. Robb The Next Always (Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy #1) by Nora Roberts Once Burned (Night Prince, #1) by Jeaniene Frost Iron Crowned (Dark Swan, #3) by Richelle Mead

All these books had great characters, and worlds or settings that was just really amazing.

Also read a lot of 4 star books this month, so overall the month was great. My least favorite reads this month was:

City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6) by Cassandra Clare Every Shade of Blue by Linzi Drew-Honey

I was bored through most of the 725 pages that was City of Heavenly Fire. Seriously why was it necessary with all those pages. I almost didn't finish the book it was so boring at times, but my curiosity got the best of me, and there was a few scenes that were OK.

message 12: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments Wow - 725 pages in a boring book?! I wouldn't have made it!

message 13: by Barbara ★ (new)

Barbara ★ | 3562 comments February was a big reading disappointment for me. Only 3 five star reads
Bound to Darkness (Midnight Breed #13) by Lara Adrian The Dirt on Ninth Grave (Charley Davidson, #9) by Darynda Jones Shards of Hope (Psy-Changeling, #14) by Nalini Singh

A few 4 stars but mostly 3 and/or 2 star reads.

Dark Emerald (Dark Jewels Trilogy, #2) by Lisa Jackson a boring book with a brute hero
The Family Trade (The Merchant Princes, #1) by Charles Stross no continuity and jumped all over the darn place

message 14: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments Still, three with 5 stars is pretty good! I'm usually happy with one or two, but we may rate things slightly different. Though 2 of your three were 5 stars for me too.

message 15: by Loriidae (last edited Mar 05, 2016 10:57PM) (new)

Loriidae | 415 comments One fabulous 5 star read -
In Bed with the Devil (Scoundrels of St. James, #1) by Lorraine Heath In Bed with the Devil by Lorraine Heath #1 Scoundrels of St James Victorian Very unusual plot, fabulous tortured hero.

Notable 4 stars
Magic Bites (Kate Daniels, #1) by Ilona Andrews Magic Bites Ilona Andrews #1 Kate Daniels Paranormal
A Hunger Like No Other (Immortals After Dark #2) by Kresley Cole A Hunger Like No Other Kresley Cole #2 Immortals After Dark Paranormal
Both with great potential lots of world building in these early books

Disappointing 2 stars
Rise (Rock Solid, #1) by Karina Bliss Rise Karina Bliss #1 Rock Solid Contemporary Started off with a bang, peaked about 2/3 in and finished with a whimper.

Devastatingly Disappointing 2 stars
The Lady's Command (The Adventurers Quartet, #1) by Stephanie Laurens The Lady's Command Stephanie Laurens #1 The Adventurers Quartet
So very disappointed in my Auto Buy Paperback author ($25 Aus) It was a new series but the main couple were so bland and the entire book was setting up the scenarios for the future series couples rather than concentrating on the main couple.

message 16: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments Loriidae wrote: "One fabulous 5 star read -
In Bed with the Devil (Scoundrels of St. James, #1) by Lorraine Heath In Bed with the Devil by Lorraine Heath #1 Scoundrels of St James Victorian Very unusual plot, f..."

I loved her westerns - LOVED! But I've only read those, I should add more of hers and bump them up the pile.

message 17: by Jane (PS), Moderator (last edited Mar 10, 2016 03:29PM) (new)

Jane (PS) | 19814 comments I have one book to rave about, and one to really dishhhh, but not so much for the storyline...

Forging the Future (Change of Heart, #5) by Mary Calmes - OMG Mary Calmes best writing and plotting is back!! Loved this book! Yay! It'll definitely be a reread/relisten :)

Sinnerman (Warder #4) by Mary Calmes - ah the extremes. Also a Mary Calmes but I'm on the bandwagon here because of the narration in audio, not the actual story. Had I been able to hear and follow the story, I know I would have enjoyed it. But the audio quality was so lousy, I missed whole sentences :( I returned it to Audible for a refund. ...Fortunately I'd already read the ebook - I was looking for a few shorter audios to slip in when I'm not ready to start a new book.

The rest of my books in February were predominantly 3 stars with a few 4s thrown in to lift my mood :D

message 18: by MountainKat, Moderator (new)

MountainKat | 20254 comments Wow, audio so bad you missed whole sentences?! That's bad!!

message 19: by Jane (PS), Moderator (new)

Jane (PS) | 19814 comments MountainKat wrote: "Wow, audio so bad you missed whole sentences?! That's bad!!"

Yup :( Really bad sound quality ~ very muffled. It was like the balance/treble thingy stuff was completely off-kilter and he sounded like he was swallowing most of his words.

message 20: by Anita Reads (new)

Anita Reads | 170 comments MountainKat wrote: "Wow - 725 pages in a boring book?! I wouldn't have made it!"

I seriously just wanted to finish the series. I got kind of angry with all the 5 star reviews I read afterwards because they explained how perfect the ending was. To me it was just so obvious it wasn't supposed to be a 6 book series but a trilogy. I hated the change of writing after book 3 as well, but it didn't get really horrible until this last book.

message 21: by Barbara ★ (new)

Barbara ★ | 3562 comments MountainKat wrote: "Still, three with 5 stars is pretty good! I'm usually happy with one or two, but we may rate things slightly different. Though 2 of your three were 5 stars for me too."

I'm usually rather generous with 5 stars. Though a book has to really keep me glued to the pages to get it. I usually give five-ten 5 star reads per month but this month everything was crap. Very disappointing.

This year I'm concentrating on catching up on a lot of series I've started and gotten nowhere on so I should be hitting more 5 stars not less.

message 22: by Charlie (new)

Charlie (meprincessyoupeasant) | 15 comments There were only three books that stood out to me in the month of February. The first one was Paradise Road which is the second book in the Paradise duology by C.J. Duggan. I adore C.J. Duggan. I found her through a free ebook of another series she had which was The Boys of Summer. She writes New Adult books and I can't get enough of them. I never expected to find a new favourite author through a free ebook!

The second one was Chosen Soldiers by R.H. Scott. This was military science fiction and I did have some problems with the male characters in it. But this book came along at just the right time. I haven't read many science-fiction books, so I was really happy when I got a review copy of it. Luckily, it did not disappoint.

The last one was The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness. I had never read a Patrick Ness book before but I heard so many good things about him. But I also heard that some people thought it was one of his lesser works. I was really impressed with this book. I thought it'd be funny, but it dealt with some serious topics like OCD and anorexia as well. Since I've read that one I bought The Knife of Never Letting Go in a charity shop and I'm going to buddy read it with a fellow booktuber in May/June somewhere.

The worst read in February was Stars Melt to Milk by Brittany Touris. Another review copy. It was new adult contemporary and that's totally my genre. But I had so many negative things to say about it, I couldn't rate it higher than two stars. It was a real struggle for me to get through it.

Overall, I had an average reading month. I read 11 things in February. 6 of them I rated four stars. 4 I rated three stars and I rated 1 two stars. But it looks like March is even more average for me. I've read 6 books up until now and I haven't rated one of them higher than three, so let's hope for more good books to come during the rest of March.

message 23: by Danielle Gypsy Soul (last edited Mar 15, 2016 10:32AM) (new)

Danielle  Gypsy Soul (afdaniellet) | 929 comments I had a good month in Feb - and a busy one - so out of the 33 books I read these one's stood out!

My Favorites:

Hot Head - I don't read much M/M but I really liked this one and thought it was very character/relationship driven and who can resist hot firefighters.

Magic Slays - Kate & Curran - no need to say more!

No Escape - A good suspense with a serial killer and a second chance romance. This one kept me reading into the early hours of the night.

Seventh Grave and No Body - Lots happening in this book and I do love Reyes.

Taking Fire - Loved this very suspenseful and action packed book with just enough romance to keep me happy.

Notable 4 Star Reads:

Brotherhood in Death - I liked this one a lot more than the previous two which I had been a bit disappointed in.

Edge of Obsession - A dark, gritty and hot dystopian book that I enjoyed a lot.

Midnight Pursuits - I'm enjoying this series of M/Cs who are pretty dark and violent.

Books I didn't really like:

Lush Curves - A naïve heroine who made dumb choices and an unlikeable hero

Shameless - I could barely finish this one. I really didn't like the hero at all and the heroine was a doormat.

Amber Flame - These are all starting to sound the same and there is way too much repetition and "over the top" dialogue.

Hot Head (Head, #1) by Damon Suede Magic Slays (Kate Daniels, #5) by Ilona Andrews No Escape (Texas Rangers, #2) by Mary Burton Seventh Grave and No Body (Charley Davidson, #7) by Darynda Jones Taking Fire (One-Eyed Jacks, #4) by Cindy Gerard

Brotherhood in Death (In Death, #42) by J.D. Robb Edge of Obsession (The Edge, #1) by Megan Crane Midnight Pursuits (Killer Instincts, #4) by Elle Kennedy

Lush Curves (Lush Curves , #1) by Delilah Fawkes Shameless (Nashville Nights, #1) by Cheryl Douglas Amber Flame (Flame #4) by Caris Roane

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