Top Five: Second Book is Best

I’m participating in Tag Wednesday for the first time! Tag Wednesday is something that Sam on ThoughtsonTomes hosts and there is a Goodreads group as well. This week the topic is to select your Top Five second book in a series. I’m so excited and so nervous because I could only think of one off the top of my head. Let’s get started!

1. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

This book is the best in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series and maybe Sarah J. Maas’ best book ever. This book raised the stakes, it has incredible character arcs, and the romance is incredible. Definitely my favorite book of the trilogy/series. I have no idea what I can say about this book without spoiling things for you… So, I’m just going to have to encourage y’all to go read this series. In the meantime, look how amazing this cover is!

2. Hold Me by Courtney Milan

Do romance novels count when they’re series about connected characters but not necessarily real sequels? I’m not sure, but either way, Hold Me is the second book in the Cyclone series and I’m so in love with this book, as you know if you read my book talk about Hold Me. Because I’ve talked about the plot of this book in the book talk, I’ll be short and sweet here.

Hold Me is a fascinating blend of friends to lovers and hate to love because Maria and Jay didn’t know they were virtual friends when they first met in real life. It’s also an extremely diverse book. Maria is a trans Latinx and Jay is an Asian-American, bi-sexual man. They are fantastic characters and I really love their relationship.

3. A Week to be Wicked by Tessa Dare

And again with the romance novels… But seriously, Minerva and Colin? (What is it with me and heroes named Colin? I’ve only met one Colin in real life and we were definitely not friends.) Anyway, Miranda and Colin are a case of opposites attract, kind of hate to love, but mostly just… Adorably perfect together.

Colin is a rake, because obviously, and Minerva needs a favor and Colin’s reputation is the perfect excuse. You see, Minerva needs to get to Scotland for this science convention because… MINERVA DISCOVERED A FOSSIL. I’m so proud of her, you might think she’s a real person and not, you know, fictional. Anyway, to get to Scotland, she persuades Colin to fake an elopement so basically, this book has all of my favorite tropes in one book, Minerva is fabulous, and Colin is a reformed rake. What’s not to love?

4. One Good Earl Deserves a Lover by Sarah MacLean

Whoops, these are just all going to be romance novels. I freaking love Pippa. You may notice a trend with the romance novels I’ve selected in this post because all of them have characters that aren’t like your “typical” romance heroine. Now, let us note that romance novels written today are (on average) a thousand percent more likely to have characters that do not fit a particular mold. They are unique and they’re funny and most importantly, they’re feminists. They believe themselves to be equal partners and can assert themselves to demand what they deserve. And I appreciate that immensely. Okay, mini rant over.

This book is great because Pippa just kind of slays Cross. She takes him by surprise and he never really seems to know what’s happening and then he’s head over heels for her. I loved this book. I love their relationship. But mostly, I love Pippa. Please read this book. Please come squeal with me about how fantastic it is. Really, just read all of Sarah MacLean’s books and thank me later.

5. The Heiress Effect by Courtney Milan

Whoops, two Courtney Milan books. Sorry not sorry. JANE IS THE BEST. She intentionally makes herself flamboyant and undesirable to ensure she won’t get a marriage proposal that would take her away from her Uncle’s home, where her sister would then be trapped. She’s an heiress though so sometimes that’s difficult and then Oliver comes along. Oliver is… He’s pretty great. He’s a good brother, a good friend, and a great partner.

I also really like the secondary romance in this book because–are you ready for this?– THE LOVE INTEREST IS AN INDIAN MAN. Yes. That is right. Regency era England when there were a ton of Indian immigrants and a lot of political issues between England/India, and we FINALLY get a Regency romance with a POC. Amazing. I’m sure there are others, but I haven’t come across them yet, so if you know them please, please comment!

Well, that went a direction I wasn’t quite planning, but… Turns out, I really don’t often like the second book the most. It’s usually the one where they break down the character and build the character back up and, well, I only like that sometimes, I guess? So, what about you all? Share with me your top five second books in the comments!


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