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Favorite Romance Reads of 2017

Saturday, December 30, 2017

I can’t believe it’s time to do another Top Reads list, though this year I’m mixing it up and I’m calling it my Favorite Romance Reads list. I had the opportunity to read so many amazing books in 2017, these stories were the best of the best of romance and created some serious book hangovers. I laughed, I cried, I swooned, and I might have yelled at my Kindle a time or two. My favorite reads of 2017 are ones that stuck with me and made me really feel the story, characters, the heat, and the emotion. When I stop and take a moment and think of them, I get that rush of feelings all over again and pretty much relive the story. They just did it for me in a big way. You can’t go wrong with any of my choices for this year, I recommended each and everyone.



Favorite Romance Reads of 2017 | About That Story



Favorite Romance Reads of 2017



The first two books I’m sharing were 6 STAR READS for me. I don’t give those stars out very often but when I do it’s because I was so blown away I couldn't even function the next day.


Review: The Hating Game by Sally Thorne | About That Story

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

Amazon | My Review


Me saying I loved this book is an understatement. It was incredible! This was a 6 star read for me! I loved the amazing relationship happening between Lucy and Josh. They had this awesome animosity happening. It was witty and fun and frustrating and endearing all wrapped together. I loved all these little moments they shared and watching things develop and grow. I swear it had the most epic slow burn I have ever read to date. I was just filled with so much anticipation, completely mesmerized by their complicated relationship.


Fun Fact: This was the very first book I read in 2017 and I just knew the second I finished it, it was going to make my favorites list. Sally Thorne is one to watch out for, The Hating Game was her debut novel. The audio book for this story is amazing as well.



Review: Mister Romance by Leisa Rayven | About That StoryMister Romance by Leisa Rayven

Amazon | My Review


This was so incredibly phenomenal. 6 stars! I don't even know what to say because it was just EVERYTHING! Incredibly entertaining and funny with this great mix of tension that had me on the edge of my seat. I was so excited while reading because I had to know all the things. Mister Romance is officially one of my Top Reads of 2017!


Fun Fact: Leisa Rayven has made my top reads list 4 years in a row! Her book Bad Romeo made my Top Reads of 2014 list, Broken Juliet made my Top Reads of 2015 list (they were both 6 star reads!), and Wicked Heart made my Top Reads of 2016 list. All three books are from the Starcrossed series and are amazing. Must reads for sure!



Who loves a good ROMANTIC COMEDY? Sign me up and pass me my Kindle because I love a read that can make me swoon and laugh. Several made my list this year and each and every one left me with a huge smile on my face.


Review: The Cad and the Co-Ed by L. H. Cosway and Penny Reid | About That StoryThe Cad and the Co-Ed (Rugby #3) by L. H. Cosway & Penny Reid

Amazon | My Review


It's not very often I finish a book and immediately want to start reading it again but with The Cad and the Co-Ed, that’s exactly what I wanted to do so I could relive every single second of this amazing story. I loved it so much! I felt like my emotions were about to spill over the entire time I was reading. I was so pulled into this amazing and beautiful story.


Fun Fact: Penny Reid made an appearance on my Top Reads of 2016 list with Beard Science.




Review: Royally Matched by Emma Chase | About That StoryRoyally Matched (Royally #2) by Emma Chase

Amazon | My Review


This was phenomenal. I didn't think it could better than Drew (Tangled) but then there was Jake (Sustained). And now, Henry. He dethrones them all! Royally Matched was a brilliantly woven romantic tale about two broken people, falling in love, growing, and becoming better versions of themselves together. I couldn't wait to start and dive right in, I couldn't put it down and never wanted it to end all at the same time.


Fun Fact: Tangled by Emma Chase was on my Top Reads of 2013 list and Sustained, the second book in the Legal Briefs series, made my Top Reads of 2015 list. The first book in the Royally series, Royally Screwed, made my Top Reads of 2016 list, as well as the third book in the Legal Briefs series Appealed.



Review: Twist by Kylie Scott | About That StoryTwist (Dive Bar #2) by Kylie Scott

Amazon | My Review


Joe and Alex's story was filled with everything I love: heart, humor, heat, and emotion. I couldn't put it down! Such a fantastic read! I love the world Kylie Scott has created with these wonderful characters in this beautiful town in this awesome bar. I just want to go have a drink and hang out with everyone. Loved this!!!


Fun Fact: Lead (Stage Dive #3) by Kylie Scott made my Top Reads of 2014 list. Rock stars for the win!




If you love a SWOONWORTHY ROMANCE, look no further! Dave has you covered and he’s a man that brings the swoons. Seriously, he made me melt!


Review: Bountiful by Sarina Bowen | About That StoryBountiful (Truth North #4) by Sarina Bowen

Amazon | My Review


This was absolutely FANTASTIC! Once I picked it up, I could not put it down. I loved watching these amazing characters come together. I love when a story really makes me feel and this book just gave me so much and I felt so full. The perfect mix of emotion, love, and heat!


Fun Fact: Steadfast by Sarina Bowen, book two in the True North series, made my Top Reads of 2016 list.





I love all kinds of romance stories, erotica being one of them because sometimes you need a book that BRINGS THE HEAT! Holy hot batman! Roni Loren knows how to write the hotness. Cold showers required!


Review: By the Hour by Roni Loren | About That StoryBy the Hour (Pleasure Principle #2) by Roni Loren

Amazon | My Review


Roni Loren totally does it for me! She wrote and incredible story with these in depth and complicated characters and I loved every second of it. I was immediately captivated and pulled in.


Fun Fact: Off the Clock, the first book in the Pleasure Principle series, made my Top Reads of 2016 list! If you’re looking for hotness combined with an incredible story, be sure to check both of these books out. You will not be disappointed.




I’m not sure what it is about a SINGLE FATHER in a story but I freaking love them! Not only are the following stories excellent romances but there’s that added extra layer thanks to the kids. 


Review: Pipe Dreams by Sarina Bowen | About That StoryPipe Dreams (Brooklyn Bruisers #3) by Sarina Bowen

Amazon | My Review


This is one of those books where everything was just perfect to me. All of it! Mike and Lauren's history, them reconnecting, and the build to it all. Hockey. Teenage drama. Tension and angst. I loved it all. The first two books were awesome but I have to say, this is my FAVORITE book in the series so far!!!


Fun Fact: Sarina Bowen is on this list twice. Both her Brooklyn Bruisers series and True North series are fantastic. As mentioned above, Steadfast, book two in the True North series, made my Top Reads of 2016 list.





Review: Ride Wild by Laura Kaye | About That StoryRide Wild (Raven Riders #3) by Laura Kaye

Amazon | My Review


This series keeps getting better and better (and I already thought it was pretty fantastic)! Slider and Cora coming together was amazing. I loved the story, the kids (hello single father!), and the transformation of healing that love brings. It was sweet and sexy with just the right amount of drama, and it was filled with so much emotion. Excellent read!


Fun Fact: I adored the Raven Riders series but I have mad love for Laura Kaye’s Hard Ink series. Book four in that series, Hard to Let Go, made my Top Reads of 2015 list.




This year I tried some NEW TO ME AUTHORS and I have to say, I was thrilled by who I found. Not only did I find some new, amazing authors, I found a few new series to be be addicted to as well. I am officially hooked!


Review: The Coppersmith Farmhouse by Devney Perry | About That StoryThe Coppersmith Farmhouse (Jamison Valley #1) by Devney Perry

Amazon | My Review


I loved this! It was an awesome introduction to the Jamison Valley series. I was exciting while reading, I loved the characters, and the underlying element of suspense. I couldn't stop smiling because there were just so many wonderful moments mixed in. It was a full, solid story and I pretty much blew off an entire day so I could just sit and read and get lost in this world. It was so worth it, I loved every second! Excellent read!


Fun Fact: The Jamison Valley series has the most stunning covers! I’d love to own these bad boys in paperback. This book was Devney Perry’s debut novel, I am thrilled to have found this series because I have so many books to look forward too.



Review: Fly With Me by Chanel Cleeton | About That StoryFly With Me (Wild Aces #1) by Chanel Cleeton

Amazon | My Review


Fantastic read! This was just filled with so much heart, humor, and emotion, it was the perfect mix of everything I love. From that very first page I was all in! It was the best kind of read, it was filled with laughter and heat with genuine characters. The emotional moments tore me apart and then I got built back up. It was all just awesome!


Fun Fact: I remember reading this story and my entire world just melted away as I got lost in the Wild Aces world. I love that feeling! Also, men in uniform are sexy.




I love, love, love a well written SECOND CHANCE ROMANCE and I have to say, this one is my favorite of the year. You know that saying, “all the feels?” That totally applies! 


Review: All or Nothing at All by Jennifer Probst | About That StoryAll or Nothing at All (Billionaire Builders #3) by Jennifer Probst

Amazon | My Review


This was absolutely AMAZING! Hands down my FAVORITE in the series. The Billionaire Builders went out with a bang with Tristan and Sydney's story. I could not get though of these two and loved every second. My heart was pretty much exploding all over the place.


Fun Fact: The Billionaire Builders series were the first books I read by Jennifer Probst and I will admit, it was the covers first that pulled me in, followed quickly by the synopsis. It’s an excellent series not to be missed.





It’s always hard to say goodbye to a series but the following three WENT OUT WITH A BANG! I’m going to miss the characters and stories so much and I see rereads in my future.


Review: Devil's Cut by J. R. Ward | About That StoryDevil’s Cut (The Bourbon Kings #3) by J. R. Ward

Amazon | My Review


EPIC! That's the word I keep coming back to when I think of this story with all its amazing conclusions and the trilogy itself. It was an epic adventure with so many twists and turns into the land of bourbon that's full of lies, deceit, hope, and love. It was truly a phenomenal story!


Fun Fact: I’m jealous of those who don’t have to wait a year in between to read this series. Those cliffhangers were killer! This is book three in The Bourbon Kings trilogy and the series does need to be read in order. The Bourbon Kings is book one and The Angels’ Share is book 2. It’s an amazing saga and the audios are stellar as well.




Review: Buns by Alice Clayton | About That StoryBuns (Hudson Valley #3) by Alice Clayton

Amazon | My Review


I loved this. So much. So very much! It was a fantastic mix of everything I adore in a story: humor, heart, and heat! Just when I think this series can't get better, Alice Clayton ups her game and does it again. Get ready for some fun and laughter with this sexy romantic comedy that will leave you with a big ol’ smile on your face. :-)


Fun Fact: The first book in the Hudson Valley series, Nuts, made my Top Reads of 2015 list. Wallbanger, the first book in the Cocktail series, was a Top Read of 2013 (this is the book that started it all for me and made me a huge Alice fan!) and Rusty Nailed (Cocktail #2) was a Top Read of 2014



Review: More Than A Feeling by Erika Kelly | About That StoryMore Than A Feeling (Rock Star Romance #4) by Erika Kelly

Amazon | My Review


This was all just so AMAZING and I feel blown away!!! Honestly, I can't say enough good things. Emotion, tension, drama, and off the charts chemistry and heat. I felt like my emotions were going to spill over while I was reading and by the end, my heart was bursting. Cooper and Daisy's story was so wonderful and I think it just might be my favorite in the series. That's saying a lot too because I LOVE this series.


Fun Fact: I Want You to Want Me, the second book in the Rock Star Romance series, made my Top Reads of 2015 list. This is a fantastic series and these rock stars are super sexy!



There you have it, my favorite romance reads of 2017. But wait! That’s not all! What’s a top reads list without a few honorable mentions? You know, the books you JUST CAN’T LET GO. I tried to stick with 15, I did. I swear! It’s hard though when there are so many amazing books out there. Here are five more that deserve a shout out because I loved them so.


Review: Royally Endowed by Emma Chase | About That StoryRoyally Endowed (Royally #3) by Emma Chase

Amazon | My Review


I literally picked this up and could not put it back down. From the prologue to the best final line of a story, I absorbed the words, the characters, the delicious slow burn, and every single details. It was simply amazing!






Review: ​So Over You by Kate Meader | About That StorySo Over You (Chicago Rebels #2) by Kate Meader

Amazon | My Review


This was such a well written story with so much depth and emotion and the perfect amount of playfulness. Vadim and Isobel were excellent characters. A truly fantastic read!







Review: Hooking Up by Helena Hunting | About That StoryHooking Up by Helena Hunting

Amazon | My Review


This was so incredibly entertaining! I adored Amie's relationship with the hero. It was so sweet and flirty and way hot! Things were complicated for these two, it was passionate, crazy fun with a few of ups and downs but I hung on every word and loved it all!





Review: Cowboy Up by Harper Sloan | About That StoryCowboy Up (Coming Home #3) by Harper Sloan

Amazon | My Review


This was so amazing! Cowboy Up is full of so much heart, healing, and love. I absolutely adored it. I've loved the entire series but hands down this was my favorite. It was the perfect way to wrap everything up!







Review: The One Real Thing by Samantha Young | About That StoryThe One Real Thing (Hart’s Boardwalk #1) by Samantha Young

Amazon | My Review


I loved Jessica and Cooper’s story but I'm even more excited about what's to come in the Hart’s Boardwalk series because this was just so full of all these awesome details making me want more and more. I'm excited to see where it all will go. I am in love with this amazing cast of characters and this wonderful town. :-)






things-to-note


I want to say a very heartfelt THANK YOU to all of my readers. I appreciate every comment here on my blog, on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Instagram. I know there are a lot of blogs out there and sites to visit so I am grateful that you take the time to visit my little slice of the book world. I love that I have a place to talk books with people who get my passion for romance and can relate to all the feelings a book can elicit from a person. It’s a wonderful thing and I look forward to making even more connections in the upcoming year.


I am excited to tackle my to-read list in 2018. Between new books coming out, books I’ve purchased, books I can get from the library, and advanced copies, I feel like I’ve got a big backlog to look forward too. I’m going to try to be a bit more flexible too, I am very much a mood reader so if I want to read paranormal romance, I’m going to read it, even if I have a romantic suspense scheduled. This can be a tricky thing when you’re a book blogger but I’m going to do my best to find some balance and go with the flow.


Do you have a reading goal? For 2017, I made a goal for myself on Goodreads of 100 books. Thanks to my Kindle, paperbacks, and listening to audio books, I finished the year at 152. I’m pretty darned impressed with myself. I have no clue what I’ll set my 2018 goal at but I know I’ll be setting one.


Thank you again for being here, it means the world to me!

xo

Gretchen



What books are you looking forward to in 2018? My to-read list can never be big enough. Let me know!




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