DGR’s 2018 Favorites: Geri’s Picks

I know, I know. It’s 2019 already and everyone and their mothers have already published their list. BUT I am a firm believer of the BETTER LATE THAN NEVER mantra. So here you go! Here are my picks for best books of 2018 in no particular order.


GERI’S FAVORITES OF 2018


MAGIC TRIUMPHS by Ilona Andrews


You and me, Kate. We’re forever.

I think I have run out of words to describe how much I love Ilona Andrews. They have forever changed my reading life for the better.

Magic Triumphs delivered an ending to my favorite series that I will not soon forget. Ilona Andrews had painstakingly laid the foundations of this finale over the course of 10 books and several novellas.Everything that happened in this book was foreshadowed in previous books and delivered in a way that only Ilona Andrews can. I finished this book satisfied and yet oddly, craving for more.

I’m gonna miss Kate and Curran and the whole gang but knowing Ilona Andrews, they’re going to be writing more stories, and I’m gonna be ready to read them all.

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


REBEL HARD by Nalini Singh

Forget about internet dating. All this traditional meet and greet and reject stuff was brutal.

There isn’t a sub-genre in romance that Nalini Singh can’t do.

I was blown away by just how good she is the moment I started reading Rebel Hard. It is, hands down, my favorite Nalini Singh contemporary to date!

The romance between Raj Sen and Nayna Sharma will make you swoon and will put a dopey smile on your face. Seriously. This book is one of those books that makes go, “This is why I read and love romance!”

Rebel Hard was a joy to read from start to finish. Hilarious, poignant, and sexy, Rebel Hard is everything I wanted in my contemporary romance. Nalini Singh’s writing shines through as she takes us through Nayna and Raj journey to HEA.

Seriously. You guys need to read this book!

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


A DUKE BY DEFAULT & A PRINCESS IN THEORY by Alyssa Cole

“You’re my liege. You’re the person I’m fighting for.”

I LOVED THIS SERIES with all my heart!

Alyssa Cole quickly became one of my favorite authors after delivering not one, but two favorite books on this list.

A Duke by Default captured my heart from the get go. Not only does it have a swoony, Scottish hero in Tavish, but it has one of my favorite heroines ever in Portia! I ADORED Portia Hobbs so much. The way Ms. Cole wrote her struggle with ADHD, her relationships with her friends and family and Tav were the best things about this book.

The tone, the chemistry, the banter — all of it was perfectly done. My one wish for 2019 is that more readers will discover and love Alyssa Cole she’s a talented writer who writes unique stories about unique characters.

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


IRON AND MAGIC by Ilona Andrews

This marriage is in name only.” 
“Sweetheart, you couldn’t pay me enough.”
Pink touched her tan cheeks. “If you betray us, I’ll make you suffer.”
“We haven’t even married yet, and I’m already suffering.” 
“We have that in common,” she snapped.

Listen. I’m not into anti-heroes at all. I’m not the kind of reader who falls for the villain. But if there’s an author who can manage to make me root for the villain, it would be Ilona Andrews.

It would be an understatement to say that I hated Hugh D’Ambray in Kate Daniels. I hated him. Loathe even. But by goddess, Ilona Andrews managed  the impossible. They actually made me like the bastard. I’m so offended by this, I can’t even. Also, how in the hell did they manage to take a loathsome character like Hugh, give him a character arc, a heroine to match and make him sympathetic? It’s magic, really.

Well the authorlords certainly knew what they were doing with this book, and I cannot wait to read more of Hugh and Elara!

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


WHAT KIND OF DAY by Mina Esguerra

Mina Esguerra continues to wow me with her stories. It’s one of the reasons why she continues to be a mainstay in my end of the year lists.

What Kind of Day reads to me like a love letter to the city of Manila. The heroine, Naya, run a specialized tour around the city. Ben, the hero became one of her passengers after getting fired from his job as a political aide. Sparks fly and the rest, as they say, is history.

I adored both Ben and Naya. Loved their HEA, but there’s another character in this book that captured my attention: Manila. The city that is. I feel like Manila was the third main character in this book. It came alive in Mina’s descriptions that I actually promised myself to find a similar tour that Naya runs and just explore the city that way.

I adored this book. The writing, the characters, the city…it just all came together perfectly for me.

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


RAINY DAY FRIENDS by Jill Shalvis

“I’ve learned that life is a crapshoot, and at any moment someone can walk into it and change it forever.”

This book also has one of the most emotionally intense confrontation I’ve read in a Jill Shalvis book.

The conflict and the road to that confrontation was so well written that it really hits you when it happened. And it’s not just that one moment in particular, it’s the way Lanie processed her emotions when confronted with that something that got to me. That, in my opinion, is great writing.

Rainy Day Friends also delivered on the romance and I’m so happy it did. I was wary because this was marketed as women’s fiction but my wariness was unfounded because there’s a lot to swoon over in this book.

I highly recommend this book. If you loved Jill Shalvis, then this is a must read. If you’re just starting out reading her books, this is a great book to start.

AMAZON | GOODREADS | MY REVIEW


SCORING OFF THE FIELD by Naima Simone

No commitment.
No relationship.
No changes.
Just sex.

Wowza! This book checked all my boxes!

Sexy.
Steamy.
With the right amount of angst thrown in!!

Naima Simone did an exceptional job with Tenny and Dom. I loved them as individuals and loved them together. I sound like a broken record saying this but the romance in this book was so satisfying.

It’s no secret that I love the two tropes equally: unrequited love and friends-to-lovers. Scoring Off Field has both. So yeah definitely one of my top reads of the year.

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


BEST OF LUCK by Kate Clayborn

She’s handed my heart back to me, and I’m unsure of how I’ll handle its new broken rhythm. 

Best of Luck is the third book in Kate Clayborn’s Chance of a Lifetime series about 3 friends who won the lottery together. It has one of my favorite tropes: best friend’s brother and filled with flawed, complex characters. It’s emotional and sexy, sweet and funny, and so well written.

I’ve enjoyed the first two books in this series so I expected to enjoy the third one too. But I was unprepared by how much this book spoke to me on every level. I liked Kit & Zoe but Greer…oh man, Greer I understood so much.

I won’t spoil the story or the journey she went through but let me just say that I love her so much. And Aleksandr 😍 I love him too. His vulnerability and his flaws makes him one of my favorite heroes ever.

There are not enough words to express how much I love this book. Go forth and read it!

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


THE KISS QUOTIENT by Helen Hoang

“I like you better than calculus, and math is the only thing that unites the universe.”

Oh my gosh, this book!

The Kiss Quotient not only met my expectations, IT EXCEEDED IT! Not an easy feat considering my expectations were sky high!

These characters that Hoang brought to life in the pages of her book made me laugh, cry, and fall in love with them.

This book is definitely one of the best I’ve read this year. Everything about it worked for me. The romance was excellent and the characters are interesting. It’s no wonder that this book has been making the rounds lately. It’s an excellent debut by Helen Hoang and the accolades are well deserved.

GOODREADS | AMAZON | MY REVIEW


That makes it for me, dirty birds! I’d love to hear about some of your top year favorites in comments below. And may 2019 bring us all plenty of books to rave about.

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