Tuesday, January 18

Best and Worst of 2010 - Part II

All right then, on with our Best and Worst of 2010! Today, we're going over Category Romance and Romantic Suspense.

Category Romance


1. Sarah's Child by Linda Howard
2. The Cinderella Deal by Jennifer Crusie
3. Hot Under Pressure by Katherine O'Reilly

Worst/Disappointing - Housekeeper at his Beck and Call by Susan Stephens. This was a DNF for me!

Monroe: I know, all my books are so old to everyone but me just getting into reading within the last 5 years I mix SO MANY new books with older ones that have been published =/ I feel like Im not contributing evenly =(

Nath: Monroe, I told you not to worry about that! :) It's totally normal to mix up older books with newer ones when you start reading romance. Especially when you have blogger friends pushing their favorites down your throat!! And hey, I absolutely love Sarah's Child, so I'm not about to argue with your choice!

Ames: Exactly Monroe. I know I told you how much I enjoyed those old Linda Howards, so don't sweat it. Maybe it'll help someone else discover them.


1. Considering Kate by Nora Roberts
2. Her Best Friend by Sarah Mayberry
3. Oh-So-Sensible Secretary by Jessica Hart

Worst/Disappointing - I don't read many category romance and the ones that I do are carefully chosen based on buzz and reviews :) However, sometimes I venture out on my own... and it doesn't pay out ^_^; I really didn't enjoy Silver and Spice by Jennifer Greene ^_^;


1. Her Best Friend by Sarah Mayberry
2. Home for the Holidays by Sarah Mayberry
3. What the Librarian Did by Karina Bliss

Worst/Disappointing - These two books received some favorable reviews around the blogosphere and even though I thought they were ok, they were kind of a disappointment in that I didn't enjoy them as much as I thought I should have based on the buzz. They are: Wedding Date with the Best Man by Melissa McClone and Magnate's Make Believe Mistress by Bronwyn Jameson. They're still good, but I just think my expectations were too high. :(

Romantic Suspense


1. Dying to Please by Linda Howard
2. Midnight's Master by Cynthia Eden
3. The Unsung Hero by Suzanne Brockman

Worst/Disappointing - Charlaine Harris's Shakespears Landlord was torture to read...


1. Silent Scream by Karen Rose
2. Shadows at Midnight by Elizabeth Jennings
3. Deadly Fear by Cynthia Eden

Worst/Disappointing - The First Sin by Cheyenne McCray. I really didn't like this book, mostly because the subject matter and how the heroine had to be involved :(

Nath: I feel that the romantic suspense genre is suffering as much as the contemporary romance ^_^; I feel there's been a decrease of releases in RS and when they are some, they come in set of 3s or a series. Also, what I'm not liking is these series being about organizations, group of people coming together because of similar background (military) and it being all high risks. What is wrong about stand-alone or  loosely connected books with focus on police investigations like Ms Rose?


*note here - I didn't read a lot of romantic suspense, so I'm including some great m/m titles that I've read.

1. Zero at the Bone by Jane Seville
2. Shades of Grey by Brooke McKinley
3. The Darkest Hour by Maya Banks

Worst/Disappointing - Nauti Deceptions by Lora Leigh. After reading this book, I decided to break a break from this author.

Monroe: JEEZ all this Linda Howard...I suck at this...

Nath: LOL, I don't think so, Monroe. Given that Ms Howard is one of the all-time favorite authors in romance, it's not really surprising that if you've read her books, they made it their way to the Top 3.

Ames: Monroe, I think it's a good thing you're reading her. You're relatively new to reading romance so it just goes to show that we know what we're talking about when we recommend books to you. LOL


Tabitha said...

@Monroe - Yay for Linda Howard! I love her books! I'm jealous you're just starting her books!

I thought I read a lot of category books in 2010 but in looking at my list, nope. I enjoyed The Best Laid Plans by Sarah Mayberry and Unguarded by Tracy Wolff. Magnate's Make-Believe Mistress by Bronwyn Jameson and Island Heat by Sarah Mayberry tie-in at third. For disappointing was The Billionaire's Baby Plan by Allison Leigh who is one of my favorite category authors.

I didn't read a lot of Rom suspense either this year. One favorite is a re-read and that's...Open Season by Linda Howard. :D Silent Scream by Karen Rose is 2nd. I have another tie-in for 3rd and that's Shadows at Midnight by Elizabeth Jennings and The Darkest Hour by Maya Banks.

Pursuit by Elizabeth Jennings isn't so much a disappointment as that I didn't like how the ending was. Most of the book was good and then bam all the build-up flat lined.

Monroe Dawson said...

Tabitha~ I love my Linda Howard...I actually had to try to not put her in all three spots! HA! ;p

Christine said...

Monroe, so sorry to hear that Shakespeare's Landlord didn't work out for you. I read it last year, too, but loved it and promptly read the entire series. I admit the series is rather bleak and definitely not romantic, but I knew that going into it. In fact, I don't even think it's romantic suspense, but mystery. Regardless of the genre, though, I'm sorry you didn't like it.

I think it's great that there's so much Linda Howard in your lists for romantic suspense. I've only read two of her books--older ones, I think. I should really give some of these recommendations a try.

nath said...

Tabitha - I still have Best Laid Plans in my TBR pile. Love the cover though :)

Interesting that Magnate's Make-Believe Mistress by Bronwyn Jameson is your third pick :)

I definitively think they are less romantic suspense, mainly because the suspense is mixed with other elements such as paranormal or urban fantasy.

By the way, what would you categorized the first trilogy (Shadows) by Kay Hooper. I say those and actually Evil are romantic suspense. With the Fear trilogy, it's harder to tell though... the romance was well done in Hunting Fear and then, it started to fade a bit...

I need to read The Darkest Hour :)

I thought Pursuit was pretty good, but yeah, the ending was abrupt :(

Christine - What two LH did you read, Christine? A lot of her older ones are good, if you can tolerate jerk heroes LOL.

Monroe Dawson said...

Nath~ I take offense to that Nath...I love jerky hero's ;p

Monroe Dawson said...

Maybe I was thinking I was getting into something with more romance...Im a romance hussy so its hard to get me into anything else! ;) ALTHOUGH I worship the author! lol

Christine said...

nath: I read Mr. Perfect and Open Season. Both were enjoyable, but I found the mix of cute, fun romance and serious mystery/suspense subject matter kind of off. I'd be willing to read more LH though.

Monroe: I hear you!!! Romance rules and we romance readers definitely need to be in the right frame of mind to read serious, un-romance stuffs. ;-)

nath said...

Christine - You read her most popular books, I think, Christine :) If you find the mystery/suspense and romance balance off, I don't think it'll get better in her other books.

Monroe - Exactly. If you love them, you'll enjoy the books :) Otherwise, I imagine you'll be very frustrated.