I love looking back on the previous year and remembering the books that brought me so much pleasure. So in the interests of sharing, these are my favourite books for 2016…
I had two favourite category romances. They’re both from the Romance / Cherish / Forever line, but they’re also very different in tone and theme. The first I read in January: Jessica Gilmore’s PROPOSAL AT THE WINTER BALL (fabulous friends to lovers story). The second I read in July: Marion Lennox’s HIS CINDERELLA HEIRESS (and as the title says, it’s a perfect Cinderella story). Such utterly wonderful and heartfelt stories!
Honourable mentions include: Rachel Bailey’s THE FINN FACTOR, Cathryn Hein’s SANTA AND THE SADDLE, and Annie West’s THE DESERT KING’S SECRET HEIR.
Oh, and gosh darn it! I want to also honourably mention Scarlet Wilson’s HIS LOST AND FOUND BRIDE, and Nikki Logan’s STRANDED WITH HER RESCUER. Both of these were seriously emotional reads.
I discovered Ashley Gardner’s CAPTAIN LACEY REGENCY MYSTERY SERIES last year, and I gobbled it up. It’s not just that the last time I was in London (in 2014) that I stayed in Drury Lane, and Captain Lacey lives just off Drury Lane, but the world Gardner creates and the community that forms around her eponymous hero is complicated, compelling and captivating.
Honourable mentions: Anne Gracie’s AUTUMN BRIDE
Favourite Non-Romance Book
Neil Gaiman’s THE OCEAN AT THE END OF THE LANE. My book group read this and it’s part fairy tale with a dash of horror and… I don’t know, it’s hard to explain, but I loved it. It captures childhood perfectly. Plus there are great examples of female power—both good and bad—which I found hard to resist.
Honourable Mentions: DADDY LONG LEGS by Jean Webster HOWL’S MOVING CASTLE by Diana Wynne Jones and GOOD OMENS by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman.
Enid Blyton’s Mallory Towers: I hoovered these back like there was no tomorrow. I then went and read THE CHILDREN OF CHERRY TREE FARM. Seriously, Blyton is kiddie crack.
It’s so much fun looking back over the books that made me laugh, cry, and heave happy sighs, and also books that made me think…that stayed with me a long time. What about you—what were your standout reads in 2016?