I know everyone is releasing their favorite books of the year posts, but I have to squeeze in my final quarter of 2022 favorites real quick first! I just feel like I have so much to talk about at the end and beginning of the year every time and it’s made worse because of how much I’ve been struggling to focus lately! But anyway, before I get too side-tracked, let’s talk about my ten favorite books I read in October, November, and December!
1. In the Weeds by B.K. Borison
Everything about Beckett and Evie is perfection and I loved it so much. Y’all have heard so much about my “Did you find your happy?” sweatshirt so I’ll stop talking about it (maybe), but to say that this series is my entire personality at the moment is not really too much of an exaggeration.
2. Missing in Action by Kate Canterbary
To say that I love the Walsh siblings is a serious understatement, so being back in this world with these characters, even in this limited way made me so freaking happy. I cannot even explain to you how much.
3. Indigo Ridge by Devney Perry
My other series obsession that I was introduced to this year is The Edens and Indigo Ridge is book one. This series is not going to be for everyone. The female main character is a cop in a small town and she accidentally hooks up with not just a local, but THE local (Griffin Eden). They have such a fascinating dynamic and I adore them so much. I loved this book and this whole series.
Built to Last is a really great example of this new celebrity, specifically actress, romance that seems to be embracing the reality that we’ve now seen repeatedly of child stars being really damaged by their experiences. Particularly this year with the release of I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jeannette McCurdy, it has really come to light that the life that so many of us millennials wanted as kids was actually really, really damaging. I have so many more thoughts about this, but for now, I just want to say that Built to Last embodies this notion without going so dark that it became hard to read. I really liked the line that this particular novel walked and I would highly recommend.
I’ve literally included all three of these books on a Quarterly Favorites list, which is why the series as a collective made it onto my favorite books of the year list. Layla and Caleb are so sweet and sometimes sweet characters are just not what you want because then the romance feels like it lacks tension and angst. In this case, the fact that these two are such good people makes this book feel like a warm hug without losing tension and while still having a light thread of angst. This book is probably the lightest book in the series, but I thought the overall balance was superbly handled. Highly recommend.
6. Juniper Hill by Devney Perry
It’s the single parent trope for me, right now, I think. It just keeps sucking me in. And the way Knox steps up and really helps out?? I mean, just slay me, why don’t you? I loved everything about this book and I am obsessed with this series. I cannot wait for the fourth one to come out! Also, I really appreciated how this book talked about cleaning and housekeepers as having a skilled job. Like, cleaning is freaking hard and housekeepers do not get enough credit for doing it.
7. Home Field Advantage by Dahlia Adler
I haven’t been reading YA at all, but I read Home Field Advantage for a #FallInLoveBingo prompt and I am so glad I did. This was my first book from Adler and I have a feeling I’ll be reading a lot more from her in the future. This is a sapphic romance between a cheerleader who desperately wants to be captain and the new quarterback who would just like her team to accept her. There is so much happening in this book and it was so, so well done.
8. Terms and Conditions by Lauren Asher
To say that Terms and Conditions took me by surprise is a serious understatement. I had previously tried a book from Asher and immediately decided it was not for me because of the writing style. But I was annoyed that I hadn’t read very many of the books in the Goodreads Top Romances once it got to the finalists (10) and so I decided to pick up a couple. Honestly, I think this is the only one I actually managed to finish in December and color me shocked, but I really loved it! I even got my sister a print copy for Christmas. There’s just something about a marriage of convenience that works for me. Plus the grumpy man who has no idea how to emote? When done well, it really works for me. I don’t think this book is for everyone, but I for one had an absolutely fantastic time!
9. Finlay Donovan Jumps the Gun by Elle Cosimano
(ARC Review forthcoming)
I really tried not to read any 2023 releases in December, I really did. But I just needed seratonin and also Netgalley/publisher gave me the audio ARC and so, this is what I listened to on my drive home from my parents after Christmas. It was everything. While I really enjoyed book two, I will admit that it is not as good as Finlay Donovan is Killing It, but this latest installment feels like it recaptured the joy of the first book with aplomb. I loved all the hijinks and the messiness and WOW I just want Finlay and Nick to fall into bed together already. Is it a good idea? No. Is it what I want? YES. Also, THE ENDING OF THIS BOOK IS WILD. I cannot wait for book four. I’m dreading the wait. I really need Cosimano to give me two installments a year, but I’m trying to remember that she is a Human who needs Time so that I will be happy with the ultimate product.
10. A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn
A Curious Beginning was nearly my last book of the year and it is one that I picked up on a whim and then devoured it. I am already so deeply invested in Veronica and Stoker that I really am desperate to continue in the series ASAP. Fortunately, the library seems to have them, which is a relief because I’m not meant to be purchasing books. We’ll see how that goes when there’s a wait on the next book, but for now, the library it is! As for what this book is about… Um, there’s a mystery and I didn’t see any of it coming really. There was a slight lull in the middle, but then it picks right back up and you’re off to the races from there.
And there you have it! I would highly recommend all ten of these books! I know we’re all sharing our favorite books of the year, including myself, but sometimes it’s nice to spotlight additional books! I hope you enjoyed and please share with me your favorites from the last three months!