Author Chat: Best Books of 2015, part 2

A few weeks ago, I decided that the best way to talk about this year’s top picks would be: to ignore me (you get all my top picks all the time anyway!) and instead, have several of our favorite authors on Binge on Books for an open discussion with them about the reads they liked best from 2015. Along with fellow book reviewer, Onnica from I Love Romantic Fiction, the fabulous Amy Jo Cousins and Nalini Singh stopped by to chat everything they enjoyed, from science fiction to contemporary romance to historicals to BDSM. It was entertaining and enlightening and gave my Kindle a huge boost in terms of reading material.

If you missed hearing Nalini and Amy Jo talk about the books they loved? Well, listen to it now: Author Chat: Best Books, part 1

We had such a blast talking with those two that Onni and I got two more of our favorites on board for a round 2! That’s right here today to discuss the books they loved and the themes that worked for them are…J.R. Gray and Jessica Hawkins!

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Author Chat: Best Books of 2015, part 1

Hard to believe but it’s that time of year again. You know the time…it’s that sloooow build up to the end of the year when we reflect on all that we’ve read, poring over kindle lists and pulling out paperbacks in order to figure out our top reads. It’s one of the most heart wrenching, soul searching, totally painful times here at Binge on Books ’cause, well, we read a lot and love a lot and honestly, have a lot of difficulty picking just five books that topped this year’s list.

To make the choosing easier this year, I thought about spicing things up by giving you my favorite books podcast style talking it out and really telling you what I think. But then, with a decisive, “NO!” I decided I needed to spice them up EVEN MORE: that’s right, it won’t be me talking about my favorite reads (which frankly, I do all the time and you probably know them all already).

So along with fellow book reviewer, Onnica from I Love Romantic Fiction, four of your favorite authors will be coming to Binge on Books to give you their TOP PICKS OF 2015!

The Lineup: 

Part 1 (out 12/15): Amy Jo Cousins and Nalini Singh

Part 2 (out 12/30): J.R. Gray and Jessica Hawkins

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Too eager and in need of great reads to listen to the podcast? Or did you listen and just want to see them before you buy them? Complete lists from both authors can be found here:

Amy Jo Cousins

Amy Jo Cousins’ Top Picks of 2015 (in no particular order)
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Nalini Singh
Nalini Singh’s Top Picks of 2015 (in no particular order)
Honorable Mentions (not mentioned in the podcast)
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Onnica is the sole reviewer of I Love Romantic Fiction, a site dedicated to…you guessed it, romance! Onni hails from England and if she wasn’t reading and reviewing, she’d probably wither and die – it’s her passion.  She believes there are always more amazing authors out there to discover and she’s always looking for good recommendations, so don’t be shy!
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Amy Jo Cousins writes contemporary romance and erotica about smart people finding their own best kind of smexy. She lives in Chicago with her son, where she tweets too much, sometimes runs really far, and waits for the Cubs to win the World Series. Amy Jo is represented by Courtney Miller-Callihan of Greenburger Associates.

Find out more about Amy Jo at www.amyjocousins.com | twitter: @_AJCousins | facebook: AmyJoCousins

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Nalini Singh is the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author of the Psy-Changeling, Guild Hunter, and Rock Kiss series. She lives in New Zealand but travels as much as possible (the travel bug bit hard from when she escaped working as a lawyer to run away and teach English in Japan). Nalini loves to write, loves to read, and thinks chocolate is a food group.

Find out more about Nalini at www.nalinisingh.com. Make sure to join her monthly newsletter to receive exclusive updates, free short stories and more! Chat with Nalini on twitter @nalinisingh and on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/AuthorNaliniSingh

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Intro and outro of today’s podcast comes from: Songs From Your Collarbone (Myndra) / CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 / portion of intro used

 

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Quickie Review: Five Dates by Amy Jo Cousins

Five Dates by Amy Jo Cousins

Genre: m/m romance

Score: 9/10

Plot: Helping his sister Lucy raise her kid has put Devin’s love life on hold. When he loses a bet to her and the penalty is to go out on five dates with men she’s chosen from Guys4Guys.com, he thinks that’s bad enough. Finding out she used a thirteen-year-old picture of him to score a date with a young guy who looks like a rock star? Epically bad.

Jay thought he wanted to fall for an older man. But his last boyfriend left him feeling humiliated and determined to stick to guys his own age. When he realizes he’s been conned into a date with exactly the kind of man he’s sworn to avoid, he’s ready to walk away on the spot. Only Devin’s swift apologies convince Jay to accept dinner to make up for the deception.

Review: Five Dates is one of those books that’s just so much fun to read you’ll devour it in one sitting. It’s a light hearted comedy of errors wherein Devin loses a bet and his sister decides to make due on it by forcing him on five dates blind dates culled from a gay dating site. First up is the latino god, Jay. Devin knows Jay’s out of his league but he meets the younger man anyway. Devin and Jay’s attraction really sizzles and the rest of the story rests on the “will they? won’t they?” aspect of their relationship. They have fantastic chemistry, uber sexy scenes, and some pretty hilarious moments where Jay rescues Devin from disastrous dates.

You’ll enjoy: the humorous writing style and easy flowing conversation; the infrequent naughty scenes that will have you fanning yourself; self-deprecating hero, Devin, who just wants to live his life if his sister would let him; the funny and gorgeous love interest, Jay, who is fierce and loyal and exactly what you would want in boyfriend.

You might not enjoy: the buildup to their relationship happens in the blink of an eye and Jay seems to really get into playing “the other man” though a few days prior he couldn’t stand it; there isn’t enough naughty; all the problems they seem to have at the beginning are breezed by in favor of a quickie ending.

Final score: 9/10

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Let’s rant about NA!

Hi, guys! 2014 is coming to a fast and ignoble end and finally it happened. We’ve hit that point – you know that point. The one we hit where we’ve read so many books, this time of the New Adult variety, that quite a few commonalities have begun to surface and we just can’t take it anymore. We have to rant! Let’s just jump right into this shall we cause we can’t hold off and be nice any longer. BTW this is so NSFW or people under the age of 18 or anyone but us really cause we are all about to start swearing and talking about girl bits and it won’t be pretty.

You’ve been warned.

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It’s the weekend, I’m bored: what do I read?!

Hey hey! So it’s the weekend; you’re bored. What are you going to read?! Ellen and I plus the fantastic Rebecca from Crunchings and Munchings book blog are having a book pow-wow this weekend and in honor of all the fun books we’re going to be reading, I thought I’d pass along a list of the top books in YA and NA right now that you should have read and if you haven’t, stock up! They’re all less than $5! So get ’em, read ’em, and tell us what you think!

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Book recommendations from you and a giveaway!

Help! I’m leaving on a three week vacation and have absolutely nothing to read. Hard to conceive of but true. So here’s a fun way for me to get recs and a lucky winner to get a free book!

I totally heart books; how about you?

Here’s the deal:

You: leave the name and author of a great book you recently read. When I say great, I mean just that – I want something that wowed you; made you think about the characters long after it was over; made you wish that you knew the author so you could storm over to her home and then beg her to write a sequel.

Me: I’ll take your recs and get great reads for my trip *plus* I’ll gift one lucky reader a free e-copy of any book recommended (your choice!).

So start recommending away! Winner will be picked Tuesday around 9 pm.

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Book Reveal: We Won’t Feel A Thing by J.C. Lillis

Today on ILYAF, we’re featuring an upcoming YA release by J.C. Lillis. Now, if you don’t know J.C. Lillis, let’s change that right now! Last year, she wrote and released an amazing YA love story about two nerd boys falling in love. It was an unusual pairing of comic books, YA, and gay fiction and it really struck a chord with us. It’s called How to Repair a Mechanical Heart and if it were ever in a cover art contest (is that a thing?!), she would totally win.  See why? Read More

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Tell Us YOUR Top reads of 2013!

Best Books 2013

Hello, folks. You know what? I’m a little bit sad these days because 2013 is slowly, inexorably coming to an end! Where did this year go, right?! Uhhh, how can it be December already? The only good thing about the end of the year is this: recapping all the amazing literature we’ve read over the last 12 months. We’ve read a lot and so have you and I think if we put two and two together, we’ll get a pretty exhaustive list of what we should be reading. Obviously though to do this, we need YOUR

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help to decide which books were the absolute

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best of the best, the creme de la creme of all the books you’ve plowed through. Below are three polls in the three main categories we review, YA, NA, and Romance. Take a few seconds to let us know what your fave in each category is. Help a fellow reader discover a fantastic read!

Top 3 winners in each category announced in two weeks and maybe a contest will be included…vote on!

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YA Review: New Girl by Paige Harbison

New GirlNew Girl by Paige Harbison

Publisher: Mira Ink

Format: Kindle Edition

Reviewed by: Onnica

Genre: Teen/YA

Score: 7/10

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