Friday, December 30, 2016

My favorite books this year

I read quite a bit this year but then I do every year as I am definitely a bookworm! I was looking at my 2016 Challenge on GoodReads and decided I'd do a Best Of post. So here, in no particular order, are the stand out books for me that I read this year:

1. The Obsession by Nora Roberts: 

“She stood in the deep, dark woods, breath shallow and cold prickling over her skin despite the hot, heavy air. She took a step back, then two, as the urge to run fell over her.” 

Naomi Bowes lost her innocence the night she followed her father into the woods. In freeing the girl trapped in the root cellar, Naomi revealed the horrible extent of her father’s crimes and made him infamous. No matter how close she gets to happiness, she can’t outrun the sins of Thomas David Bowes.

Now a successful photographer living under the name Naomi Carson, she has found a place that calls to her, a rambling old house in need of repair, thousands of miles away from everything she’s ever known. Naomi wants to embrace the solitude, but the kindly residents of Sunrise Cove keep forcing her to open up—especially the determined Xander Keaton. 

Naomi can feel her defenses failing, and knows that the connection her new life offers is something she’s always secretly craved. But the sins of her father can become an obsession, and, as she’s learned time and again, her past is never more than a nightmare away.

I loved this book! It was creepy in parts but also so riveting and had such a wonderful love story! THis book is Nora Roberts at her best, in my opinion. 

2. The Key to Extraordinary by Natalie Lloyd:

Everyone in Emma's family is special. Her ancestors include Revolutionary War spies, brilliant scientists, and famous musicians--every single one of which learned of their extraordinary destiny through a dream.

For Emma, her own dream can't come soon enough. Right before her mother died, Emma promised that she'd do whatever it took to fulfill her destiny, and she doesn't want to let her mother down.

But when Emma's dream finally arrives, it points her toward an impossible task--finding a legendary treasure hidden in her town's cemetery. If Emma fails, she'll let down generations of extraordinary ancestors . . . including her own mother. But how can she find something that's been missing for centuries and might be protected by a mysterious singing ghost?

With her signature blend of lyrical writing, quirky humor, and unforgettable characters, Natalie Lloyd's The Key to Extraordinarycements her status as one of the most original voices writing for children today.
 

This is a book I read with my kids earlier in the year. It's a wonderfully imaginative story about a girl who feels like a bit of a misfit in her own town and family. She has an amazing adventure with her best friend, a new friend and finds herself along the way. My kids have brought this story up several times this year and we've discussed it. We are looking forward to reading more by this wonderful author. 

3. Apprentice in Death by J.D. Robb:

Nature versus nurture... 
 
The shots came quickly, silently, and with deadly accuracy. Within seconds, three people were dead at Central Park’s ice skating rink. The victims: a talented young skater, a doctor, and a teacher. As random as random can be.

Eve Dallas has seen a lot of killers during her time with the NYPSD, but never one like this. After reviewing security videos, it becomes clear that the victims were killed by a sniper firing a tactical laser rifle, who could have been miles away when the trigger was pulled. And though the locations where the shooter could have set up seem endless, the list of people with that particular skill set is finite: police, military, professional killer.

Eve’s husband, Roarke, has unlimited resources—and genius—at his disposal. And when his computer program leads Eve to the location of the sniper, she learns a shocking fact: There were two—one older, one younger. Someone is being trained by an expert in the science of killing, and they have an agenda. Central Park was just a warm-up. And as another sniper attack shakes the city to its core, Eve realizes that though we’re all shaped by the people around us, there are those who are just born evil...

This is the 43rd installment in the In Death series by Robb and it's still going strong! This story is one of a serial mass shooter. It made my skin crawl and freaked me out considering the abundance of mass shootongs we've experienced in the past several years. However, the story is so fantastic that it kept me flipping pages long into the night when I read it!

4. Medical Medium by Anthony William:

Anthony William, Medical Medium, has helped tens of thousands of people heal from ailments that have been misdiagnosed or ineffectively treated or that doctors can’t resolve. He’s done this by listening to a divine voice that literally speaks into his ear, telling him what lies at the root of people’s pain or illness, and what they need to do to restore their health. His methods achieve spectacular results, even for those who have spent years and many thousands of dollars on all forms of medicine before turning to him. Now, in this revolutionary book, he opens the door to all he has learned over his 25 years of bringing people’s lives back: a massive amount of healing information, much of which science won’t discover for decades and most of which has never appeared anywhere before.

Medical Medium reveals the root causes of diseases and conditions that medical communities either misunderstand or struggle to understand at all. It explores all-natural solutions for dozens of the illnesses that plague us, including Lyme disease, fibromyalgia, adrenal fatigue, chronic fatigue syndrome, hormonal imbalances, Hashimoto’s disease, multiple sclerosis, depression, neurological conditions, chronic inflammation, autoimmune disease, blood-sugar imbalances, colitis and other digestive disorders, and more. It also offers solutions for restoring the soul and spirit after illness has torn at our emotional fabric. Whether you’ve been given a diagnosis you don’t understand, or you have symptoms you don’t know how to name, or someone you love is sick, or you want to care for your own patients better, Medical Medium offers the answers you need. It’s also a guidebook for everyone seeking the secrets to living longer, healthier lives.

“The truth about the world, ourselves, life, purpose—it all comes down to healing,” Anthony William writes. “And the truth about healing is now in your hands.”

If you or anyone you love has had to deal with illness this is a must read. This book is informative and fantastically eye-opening. It is full of information on the root causes of a lot of illness. Anthony William shares his knowledge about food as a healing force. I've put a lot of this into practice with my family and have already seen results. We will definitely be moving forward with the healing information found in this amazing book!

5. Daughters of the Bride by Susan Mallery:

With Joy, Love and a Little Trepidation, Courtney, Sienna and Rachel Invite You to the Most Emotional Wedding of the Year… Their Mother's

Courtney

~ The Misfit ~ 


As the awkward one, Courtney Watson may not be as together as her sisters, but she excels at one thing—keeping secrets, including her white-hot affair with a sexy music producer. Planning Mom's wedding exposes her startling hidden life, changing her family's view of her—and how she views herself—forever. 

Sienna

~ The Free Spirit ~ 


When Sienna's boyfriend proposes—in front of her mom and sisters, for crying out loud—he takes her by surprise. She already has two broken engagements under her belt. Should she say "I do" even if she's not sure she does? 

Rachel

~ The Cynic ~ 


Rachel thought love would last forever…right up until her divorce. As Mom's wedding day draws near and her ex begs for a second chance, she's forced to acknowledge some uncomfortable truths about why her marriage failed, and decide if she'll let pride stand in the way of her own happily-ever-after.

I LOVE the Fool's Gold series by Mallery so decided to give this book a try when I saw it on the New Release shelf at my library! I'm so glad I did because it is wonderful! This is a story about sisters and their relationships with one another, their mom and the men in their lives. It's complex and funny and filled with love - romantic and familial. 

6. The Trouble with Mistletoe by Jill Shalvis:

If she has her way ...

Willa Davis is wrangling puppies when Keane Winters stalks into her pet shop with frustration in his chocolate-brown eyes and a pink bedazzled cat carrier in his hand. He needs a kitty sitter, stat. But the last thing Willa needs is to rescue a guy who doesn’t even remember her ...

He’ll get nothing but coal in his stocking.

Saddled with his great-aunt’s Feline from Hell, Keane is desperate to leave her in someone else’s capable hands. But in spite of the fact that he’s sure he’s never seen the drop-dead-gorgeous pet shop owner before, she seems to be mad at him ...

Unless he tempers “naughty” with a special kind of nice ...

Willa can’t deny that Keane’s changed since high school: he’s less arrogant, for one thing—but can she trust him not to break her heart again? It’s time to throw a coin in the fountain, make a Christmas wish—and let the mistletoe do its work ...

This is the book I'm reading now. I'm almost done with it and have loved every moment of it! It's set at Christmas time but has SO MUCH going for it! I think this book could be read at any time of year and enjoyed!


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