Best Reads of 2022: Days 14 - 21 #BestReadsOf2022


I'm continuing to play catch-up with the #BestReadsOf2022 posts. I'm skipping some of the prompts since they don't apply to what I read this year, so that actually makes it a little easier. :) Here are days 14 thru 21, which finishes off the list. 


Kennedy Ryan never disappoints. She is such a gifted storyteller, and her writing is beautiful and powerful. Before I Let Go was stunningly good and packed an emotional punch.


While Husband Material was at times a bit heavier than Boyfriend Material, it was still chock full of the type of humor I love - dry, witty, clever - and plenty of laugh out loud moments.


To say that When In Rome is not my usual kind of read is an understatement. I don't do "cute" or "sweet" and I tend to give rom-coms a wide berth. But I guess I was in some kind of mood because I decided to give it a try. And what a surprise it was... in the best kind of way. Yes it was sweet, yes it was cute, but I was charmed.



Carrie Soto Is Back - Because TJR is a master storyteller and made me pull for Carrie even when I didn't always like her.
Reason to Believe - Because Rebecca Yarros created characters that I genuinely liked and their situations touched my heart.
Kulti - Because I spent half the book thinking Kulti was a jerk, only to have Zapata make me love the taciturn soccer star.
Most of All You - Because Mia Sheridan spun her magic (yet again) and provided tears and heartache and hope in the most perfect way.
Reminders of Him - Because I was completely invested in this story of forgiveness and second chances.
Once We Were Starlight - Because I loved the dreamy, atmospheric quality Sheridan created (even though what was happening was horrific) and the journey to overcome.
The Family Remains - Because unraveling the remaining secrets around past events keep me riveted.
It Ain't Me, Babe - Because I'd read only one book by Cole (and truly disliked it), but Styx and Mae's story pulled me in and I couldn't get enough.
Before I Let Go - Because this story of grief, loss, friendship, family, and second chances was powerful and moving.
Credence - Because I was captivated by the situation and was glued to the pages, desperate to know how it would all unfold.
It Starts With Us - Because Colleen Hoover delivered the "more" that I'd been wanting.
The Wall of Winnipeg - Because I finally experienced the slow-burn deliciousness of Mariana Zapata... and loved it.


The Sunday Post #318 | December 25, 2022


The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news: a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books, 
and share what's coming up on your blog in the week ahead.


Merry Christmas, friends! For those who celebrate, I hope you're having the most wonderful day, spent with those who are special to you. 

Here in Florida, we're having the coldest Christmas in 30 years... and you won't hear me complaining! I'm loving it (though I seem to be the only one). 😊 Temps started dropping Friday, and when I got up Saturday morning it was in the 20's. That's some serious cold for my area! 

It's been a busy week, but a good one. Last Sunday night The Husband and I went down to St. Augustine for the Nights of Lights. It was beautiful, but also insanely crowded, so we didn't stay long. Monday I worked from home since I had a eye appointment scheduled. And Thursday was my last workday until January 3rd. Color me happy! I am thrilled to be enjoying some much-needed time off.

Our plan was to go to NC a few days after Christmas and visit The Husband's family, but after their early Christmas gathering a week ago... they now have Covid. So, trip is postponed. Sorry we won't be seeing them, but not sad about more time at home. :)

Nothing from the 80's today, but enjoy an old classic from Michael Bublé.


Tuesday, December 20



Kindle: Coen (Pittsburgh Titans #4) by Sawyer Bennett - 4★

Audio: A Greene Family Christmas (The Greene Family #9.5) by Piper Rayne - 4★



eARC: The Backup Plan by Jill Shalvis

Audio: Wait For It by Mariana Zapata


Nothing this week.



Best Reads of 2022 | Days 7-13 #BestReadsOf2022

I'm continuing to play catch-up with the #BestReadsOf2022 posts. I'm skipping some of the prompts since they don't apply to what I read this year, so that actually makes it a little easier. :) Here are days 7 thru 13. 


The only re-reads I had this year were the first two books in The Others series (Written In Red and Murder of Crows). But it's likely that even if there had been other re-reads, these still would have come out on top. This series is an all-time favorite and listening to them on audio (again and again) is like revisiting old friends.



Uh, how much time do you have? 😁 Since romance is my mainstay, the genre I read from almost exclusively, there's a lot to choose from. No way can I narrow it down to just one, so here are just some of my favorite romances from the year.


Audiobooks play a big role in my reading. I love the experience of allowing a narrator (or, preferably, narrators) to use their voice and make the story come alive for me. It can make for such an immersive reading experience. There have been many audiobooks that I've truly enjoyed this year, but I can easily say that one stood out above the rest: Carrie Soto Is Back. Taylor Jenkins Reid's audiobooks have the best production value around and Carrie Soto was a great example of that. With full cast narration (including some former tennis greats) and even sports commentary (complete with theme music) that made me feel like I was listening to ESPN, this audiobook brought Carrie to life in a way that was unmatched by any other audiobook this year.


With rare exceptions, fantasy is not a genre I generally turn to. In fact, the only thing close to fantasy this year would be the Psy-Changeling series, which is urban fantasy at most. (Some classify the series as paranormal romance, but for the sake of the prompt, I'm going with urban fantasy.) I read the first six books in the series this year (along with loads of bonus material), and it's safe to say I'm hooked. What a fascinating world Singh has created.


Historical fiction is another genre that is a rarity for me, and the only book that would truly qualify this year is a historical romance: The Belle of Belgrave Square. When I saw a trusted blogger friend (Rachel @ Waves of Fiction) rave about it, her review was enough to capture my interest. What a surprise this one was! I was captivated from the start. I knew I was hooked when I found myself getting positively giddy over sidelong glances and the touch of hands. :) Matthews delivered a slow burn historical romance that I adored - so much so that I had to order a physical copy for myself before returning my library copy.


The Sunday Post #317 | December 18, 2022


The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Caffeinated Book Reviewer.
It's a chance to share news: a post to recap the past week on your blog, showcase books, 
and share what's coming up on your blog in the week ahead.


I did it. I made it through the week. I feel like doing a celebratory dance but I'm too exhausted. Instead, just picture me slumped in the corner waving limply. LOL On the plus side, this past week was the end of four weeks of stress and mayhem at the office. It's the same every year - mid-November thru mid-December is insanely busy for me - and I'm always relieved to see it end. This coming week should be an easy one (knocking on wood), and the week between Christmas and New Years (drumroll, please)... I am taking the whole week off. Actually, my PTO will start on Friday the 23rd and I'll return on the 2nd. I am positively giddy at the prospect. 😊

Beyond work, it wasn't a bad week. I got some gift-wrapping done, a few gifts arrived earlier than expected, the Tampa Lightning are on a five-game winning streak, and a serious blast of winter weather is one the way just in time for Christmas. Color me happy!

This week's feel-good moment comes courtesy of a dad who did something extraordinary to make sure his son felt loved and accepted. Break out your tissues.

This week's 80's holiday music fix is one of my favorites. Do They Know It's Christmas (1984) by Band Aid.


Tuesday, December 13

Top Ten Tuesday: Winter TBR

Friday, December 16

Best Reads of 2022: Days 1-5


Audio: Snowfall on Haven Point by RaeAnne Thayne - 3.5★



Kindle: Coen (Pittsburgh Titans #4) - Sawyer Bennett
Audio: A Greene Family Christmas (The Greene Family #9.5) - Piper Rayne


Nothing this week.




#BestReadsOf2022 | Days 1-5


I look forward to Sophie's Best Reads event and have joined in the last few years. Unfortunately, this is my busiest time of the year at the office, and when you add in the holidays and family commitments (and sleep LOL)... well, time is at a premium. And here it is mid-December and I've yet to manage a single Best Reads post. (Not surprising since I've only had a total of four posts this month.) But I'm determined to still try, so I'll be posting several of the daily prompts together and hopefully over the next week or so I can manage to cover all the prompts that apply to my reading year. 


The Family Remains, the follow-up to Jewell's The Family Upstairs, was one of my most anticipated books of the year - and it did not disappoint. Full of twists I never saw coming, and an overall feeling of tension and dread that increased as the ending drew near, this was just the kind of psychological thriller that I love. The full-cast narration was the cherry on top.


I finally read Goodbye Paradise and Hello Forever from Sarina Bowen's backlist this year and (no surprise) loved them both. Bowen never fails to create characters that are easy to empathize with, but she takes it a step further and makes them so real and so human that I fall a little in love with them. Josh + Caleb in Goodbye Paradise and Axel + Caxton in Hello Forever captured my heart and I didn't want to say goodbye.


I read only one illustrated book this year but even if there had been many, I'm sure my answer would have been the same. Oseman's Heartstopper Volume Four was sweet and charming, heartfelt and emotional. This volume took a more serious tone as Charlie's mental health took center stage, but it still managed to incorporate the same charm as the previous volumes. Charlie Spring and Nick Nelson are too precious for words.


Taylor Jenkins Reid has done it again. Carrie Soto is Back was one of my most anticipated releases of 2022 and TJR delivered in a big way. Carrie was complex, flawed, and multi-layered - and even when I didn't always like her, I admired her strength, determination, and sheer will. Think you wouldn't like this one because you don't care about tennis? Think again. 😉


When I think of my reading in 2022, I think of Catherine Cowles. All five books in her remarkable Tattered & Torn series released between February and October this year. I inhaled each one as it released and was completely taken in by the beautifully written characters, the small town setting of Wolf Gap, Oregon, the suspense, the romance. It all combined to create a series that I truly loved and didn't want to end.  


Top Ten Tuesday: Winter TBR


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This Week's Top Ten Tuesday Topic:
Another week of running on fumes and operating on stress, but I'm taking 10 minutes to eke out a super-quick post. There aren't ten, but here a few of the books that are topping my winter TBR.