Wednesday, December 28, 2011

These Are a Few of My Favorite Reads


First, join me in two weeks, on Wednesday, Jan. 11, when Preternatura Book Club will be back! We'll be reading two chapters a week of the first book in Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson series, Moon Called. I hope you'll join in the read.

It's the end of the year, so that means it's time to look back. I think 2011 for me was kind of like a train. It started out really slow...nothing going on...then page proofs for Royal Street came in, then the cover, then more proofs, then more proofs, then ARCs. Revisions on River Road, book two in the Sentinels series. Drafting Elysian Fields, book three in the series. Full-time day job. Yikes!

There were also a couple of extra-secret surprises, which you can find out in mid-to-late January if you want to sign up to receive my newsletter and haven't already done so. Just click HERE and tell me you want it--I promise not to bombard your email inbox.

On a reading level, because I'm kind of obsessive about these things, I can tell you I read 92 novels this year--this is novels I actually finished. That doesn't count a half-dozen writing books and at least five or six reference books. So...can I pick my top 10? Nope, and here's why: In the interest of reviewing books for the blog as they came in my mailbox or Netgalley account, I neglected some of my favorite all-time series so I think a "top five" list would be skewed.

Instead, here's my five all-time favorite authors and/or series. And since I like to share my reads here on this blog, tell me which series you haven't read that you'd like to start....and I'll send you the first book in the series. How's that?

So, in absolutely no order:

Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson series
This series is smart, has very understated humor, and was the first urban fantasy series that ever made me cry. Just a really solid UF series.

JR Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series
Le sigh. Nobody, and I mean nobody, writes deep point of view like J.R. Ward, and this dark paranormal romance series makes my all-time fave list despite having a glossary in the front and strhange spellings.

Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series
Everytime I think this series just has to fizzle out, Jim Butcher throws in a monkey wrench and sends the series spinning in a new direction. A book from this series is the first UF I remember making me put the book down because I was laughing too hard to read. The scene involved Walmart and marbles.

Kim Harrison's Hollows series
Kim, Kim, Kim. I'm putting you here despite the Kisten episode. You know what I'm talking about. I still haven't gotten over it all these years later, so I guess you probably did the right thing from a storytelling standpoint. But still...the best ensemble cast in urban fantasy, although Ivy annoys me on occasion.

Simon R. Green's Nightside series
This series stumbles now and then, but I love it for the sheer fact that John Taylor and his companions in the Nightside--an alternative version of London--continually blow my mind. Green's mix of elements from sci fi, mythology, and sheer weirdness, plus his snarky British humor, are never, ever boring.

Runners-up
Charlaine Harris' Southern Vampire series
I debated on this one because the last book or two have gotten a little weird for me, but I still love Sookie and Eric and Pam and the gang...and, no, "True Blood" doesn't follow the books except in a VERY nominal sense.

Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series
You guys are the ones who introduced me to Cat and Bones, and even though I'm not yet up to date on this series, I will be soon. It could well move up into my top group by this time next year. I'm excited about attending the Authors After Dark con next August, so I can go all fangirl with JF.

So, there you have it! Want to try a book in one of these seven series? Just tell me YOUR favorite book or series, and which one you'd like to try. As always +1 entry for comment, +1 for blog follow, +1 for Twitter follow @Suzanne_Johnson, and +1 for Tweet or Retweet.

I'll be taking off for the holiday again, but will be back on Monday, Jan. 2, with a HUGE Reader's Choice list. Y'all be good, now!



27 comments:

  1. There are so many series I absolutely love, Mercy Thompson being one of them. At the moment I'm totally crazy about Ann Aguirre's books, but authors like Laura Bickle, Jess Haines, Carolyn Crane, Gini Koch, Marjorie M. Liu and many more are totally rocking my reading world as well.

    I haven't read the Black Dagger Brotherhood yet and would like to give that one a try.

    (commented, tweeted, follower, twitter follower http://twitter.com/#!/SullivanMcPig/status/152035871389003777)

    +4

    sullivanmcpig(at)gmail(dot)com

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  2. Well, huh. I have actually read the first book in all of those series except the Simon Green one. I feel so...literate!

    BTW, the link for the newsletter sign up thingy didn't work!

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  3. My favorite series - In order:
    Kim Harrison - Hollows Series,
    Carrie Vaughn - Kitty Norville Series, Jennifer Estep - The Elemental Assassin Series, Faith Hunter - Jane Yellowrock Series,
    Kelley Armstrong - Women of the Otherworld Series, Charlaine Harris - Southern Vampire Mysteries, Jocelynn Drake - Dark Days Series, Jeaniene Frost - Night Huntress Series, Adrian Phoenix - The Maker’s Song Series
    Jeri Smith-Ready, WVMP Radio Series. I would like to try Simon R. Green's Nightside series.

    +1 for comment
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  4. @SullivanMcPig...I haven't read Ann Aguirre yet, but she's on my wishlist. So many series, so little time.

    Thanks for letting me know about the link, Teri Ann--I fixed it (I hope)

    Roger...Several of these are on my "need to read but haven't yet" list--Jennifer Estep, Faith Hunter, Kelley Armstrong, Adrian Phoenix. And Jeri's series, which is high on my TBR pile since she was kind enough to read and do a cover blurb for Royal Street! Also am curious about the Stacia Kane series, but haven't done it yet.

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  5. I've read most of them including the latest releases as they are my favorites too! :) The only one I haven't tried is Simon R. Green, although I've heard so many good reviews on him! I also have read only first 2 books of Jim Butcher, but I'm planning on reading more.
    My favorites apart from the mentioned above are Kate Daniels y Ilona Andrews, Fever by Karen marie Moning, all books by Adrian Phoenic, Downside Ghosts by Stacia Kane, Jane Yellowrock by Faith Hunter, Cara Gillian by Diana Rowland, Chicagoland vampires by Chloe Neill, both series by karen Chance, Toby Day by Seanan McGuire... There are so many!
    +1 comment
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    Have a great holiday, Suzanne, and happy new year!!!

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  6. I like a batch of different series but Seanan McGuire's October Daye is one of my favorites. I'd like to try Simon Green's Nightside series.

    +1 comment
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    sgiden at verizon.net

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  7. My favorite series is Kresley Cole's Immortals After Dark. She has a great combination of humor and the stories get dark and emotional without being too dark.

    That said, I also love the JR Ward and Charlaine Harris series. But I might love the others you mentioned just as much if I ever found the time to read them. :)

    +4 (comment, Twitter, RT, GFC)

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  8. The only series on your list I am not reading are the Jim Butcher series, and the Simon R. Green books, and the last ones don't appeal to me.
    I can hardly wait for the next J.R. Ward book, so curious how she will put off Thor's story while he is still grieving for his Wellsie.

    auriansbooks at gmail dot com
    comment, follower, follow you on Twitter = +3

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  9. My favorite serie is Kelly Armstrong Women of the Otherworld.

    I would like to tried Jim Butcher Dresden File.

    +1 comment

    Glassheart18ca@hotmail.com

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  10. I've read most of those, though I'm way behind in the Dresden Files and a few behind in the Hollows series (but Christmas is helping remedy that!)

    One of my all-time faves is definitely Karen Chance's Cassie Palmer series. I love everything about it. She is the author that I most want to write like. :)

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  11. I love the Mercy Thompson series, the BDB series, and the Southern Vampire Mysteries. I'd like to try the Night Huntress series.
    +1 Comment, +1 Follower brendem7@comcast.net

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  12. I love the Nighshade series and The Forest of Hands and Teeth series!
    The series I want to try in Night Huntress! I have heard good things about it!

    +1 entry for comment
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  13. I absolutely love the series you picked! You got Night Huntress series, which is one of my all-time fav and you also choose Simon Green! I've recently discovered his books, as they are being published in my language, and I don't know how I missed them! I've ordered them all, after reading the first two!
    I like Charlaine Harris as well, but the last two books didn't quite catch my attention

    I'd love to win Patricia Briggs books, as I haven't read them!

    +1 comment
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    aliasgirl at libero dot it

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  14. All these books sound so good. But I really like the idea of an alternate London, so I'd like to start on the Nightside Series!

    +1 comment
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    anita at anitasaxena dot com

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  15. I have quite a few series that I particularly liked this year. Some that I've read the 1st book of & impatiently waiting for the writer to finish the whole series before I read the next ones. I like reading them all at once otherwise I find I forget pertinent things.
    - CL Wilson's 5bk Tairen Soul series
    - Kristin Cashore's 7 Kingdom series (can hardly wait for the 3rd book)

    I'd love to try the Black Dagger Brotherhood series.

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    thumbelinda03@yahoo.com

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  16. My absolutly favorite series is Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews. I also love both Mercy Thompson and Alfa&Omega series by Patricia Briggs. I love Weatger Warden by Rachel Caine, Touched by an Alien by Gini Koch, Fever by Karen Moning and Kara Gillian series by Diana Rowland.

    I'd like to start Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series.

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  17. +1 My favourite series would be The Hunger Games series.

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  18. I have a lot of favorite books, so I'll tell you my last favorite book. It was Shaedes of Gray by Amanda Bonilla, this book is amazing and I really loved it. A great Urban Fantasy book.

    I would like to discover Simon R. Green's Nightside series, I didn't know this one.

    thanks for the giveaway.

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  19. A great giveaway, Suzanne. Thanks again.

    +1 My favorite book series has to be Stephen King's Dark Tower. Reading the seventh one soon. If I win this giveaway, I'd probably go for trying out the Jim Butcher series, as I continually read praise for his work.

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  20. Well, I've read all those series, and yes, they are great favorites. (Although I have to admit that I just haven't cared about the last several BDB books. Dunno why.)

    But even so, I must add my suggestions of series that I love and you must read:
    Stacia Kane's Downside Ghosts
    Kevin Hearne's Iron Druid Chronicles
    Ann Aguirre's Sirantha Jax
    Seanan McGuire's October Daye
    Devon Monk's Allie Beckstrom
    Kelley Armstrong's Otherworld (both Women of and Men of!)
    Jaye Well's Sabina Kane
    Kelly Meding's Dreg City
    etc., etc., etc... Maybe I better stop there... :)

    Now if you want to offer me the first book in a series *I* haven't read yet, I keep hearing great things about Gini Koch... hint, hint

    rissatoo
    (+4: comment, follower, follower, retweeter)

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  21. Well, I'm usually not one for ongoing, open-ended series. The one I started and stuck with for about 11 books (give or take) was the Anita Blake novels. But at a point, it seemed to focus on the sex and not the plot and I gave up.

    My all-time favorite (mostly-) closed series would be the Farseer trilogy by Robin Hobb. Amazing stuff. I push it on everyone I can. :)

    I would REALLY love to try the first book of the Dresden Files.

    Thanks for another amazing giveaway!

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    zsaz1029.at.yahoo.dot.com

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  22. Hunger games series, Jeaniene Frost's Night Huntress series are some of my favorites.

    I's like to try Simon R. Green's Nightside series and Patricia Briggs' Mercy Thompson series

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    uniquas at ymail dot com

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  23. I LIKE CHARLINE HARRIS, I QUIT READIN THE BOOKS, WHEN TRUE BLOOD CAMSE OUT AND MADE ME HOLLER AT THE TV, "THAT NOT IN THE BOOKS " LOOL
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    BLACKROZE37

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  24. My favorite series is The Hollows by Kim Harrison though I also take offense to Kisten. I would love read the Dresden Files. Thanks for the giveaway. I signed up for your newsletter as well. I'm so behind!

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  25. The only series in those listed I've read is The Southern Vampire series by Charlaine Harris and it is one of my fav and I'm so sad the series will be ending. The earlier books have been great but some of the latter ones have lacked a little but I still love the series. I would love to start the Mercy Thompson series

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    june111(at)att(dot)net

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  26. Favorite series? That's a tough one. I'll just try to list a few for you... Chicagoland Vampires series by Chloe Neill, Lords of the Underworld series by Gena Showalter, Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost.... I could go on and on, but I won't.

    I think I would like to try out Storm Front from Jim Butcher's Dresden Files series. Sounds like a book I'll enjoy.

    Thanks for the giveaway!

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    =4

    lyssad87(at)gmail(dot)com

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  27. My fav series is Hunger Games.

    Playing for Mercy Thompson.

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    lesly7ch(at)yahoo(dot)com

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