Top Ten Tuesday: Popular books that live up to the hype

Happy Top Ten Tuesday! Today we’re talking about books that actually live up to the hype, and we all know that I tend to dislike overhyped books. That said, here are ten books that are (or were) frequently hyped in the book blogosphere that I actually really enjoyed.

   

Are there any super-popular books that you would recommend? Did you participate in Top Ten Tuesday today? Feel free to drop your link in the comments and I’ll check it out!

Let’s talk about: Romantic novels!

Happy Valentine’s Day! Whether you’re celebrating or not, here are thirty books that will give you serious 😍.

romantic comedy:

💞 The Foxe & the Hound by R.S. Grey
💞 The Virgin Romance Novelist by Meghan Quinn
💞 Imperfect Chemistry by Mary Frame
💞 Slightly Stalky by Amy Vansant

lgbt:

💞 Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
💞 If I Was Your Girl by Meredith Russo
💞 Damaged Like Us by Krista & Becca Ritchie
💞 Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
💞 The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
💞 Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

young adult:

💞 Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
💞 Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon
💞 Operation Prom Date by Cindi Madsen
💞 The Big F by Maggie Ann Martin
💞 The Summer Before Forever by Melissa Chambers
💞 The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

new adult:

💞 The Deal by Elle Kennedy
💞 Infini by Krista & Becca Ritchie
💞 Remember When by T. Torrest
💞 Sincerely, Carter by Whitney G.

on the steamier side + some erotica:

💞 Lust is the Thorn by Jen McLaughlin
💞 Frenched by Melanie Harlow
💞 Personal Escort by Ainsley Booth

enemies to lovers:

💞 Anything You Can Do by R.S. Grey
💞 Walk of Shame by Lauren Layne
💞 The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

contemporary romance:

💞 Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
💞 Arm Candy by Jessica Lemmon
💞 Break of Day by Andie J. Christopher
💞 Roomies by Christina Lauren

What are your favorite romantic reads? Do you have any Valentine’s plans? (I don’t since it’s a Wednesday and I work.)

Top Ten Tuesday: Book boyfriends

Happy Top Ten Tuesday!  Today, we’re celebrating the romantic love interests that keep us coming back for more – our top ten book boyfriends.  Buckle up, because I have a lot to say on this topic!

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Krista & Becca Ritchie have a knack for writing really great love interests.  Honestly, I could list any of their male leads as one of my favorite book boyfriends, but I narrowed it down to Connor Cobalt (Kiss the Sky), Luka Kotova (Infini), and Ryke Meadows (Hothouse Flower).  Both Connor Cobalt and Ryke Meadows are heavily featured in many of the Ritchies’ books but are introduced as love interests in the books above.

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Seven Ways to Lose Your Heart is all about reconnecting with a childhood friend and falling in love.  As if it takes much more to win my heart than that… but Kennedy Harrison is a great love interest.  He’s flawed but still romantic.  He knows what he wants, but he’s not an over-the-top alpha.  He’s a realistic love interest.

Similar to the Ritchie sisters, R.S. Grey knows how to write the perfect guy.  In Anything You Can Do, Lucas Thatcher is Daisy Bell’s childhood rival – and new co-worker.  Working together as physicians at a small family practice, Lucas pushes Daisy’s buttons in just the right way.  In The Allure of Julian Lefray, Julian hires Josephine Keller to help him maintain his sister’s fashion line while she’s away.  There’s enough sexual tension to power the entirety of New York City, but they’re determined not to give in and jeopardize the company.

I fell in love with Arm Candy’s Davis Price in Jessica Lemmon’s previous book, Eye Candy. Davis is a sardonic stock analyst who is completely done with relationships.  In his own book, we see him start to open up to the possibility of love… and then really knock the socks off of his love interest (and me) with his absolute perfection.

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Now, clearly, these three books are young adult romances.  They’re not so much book boyfriends for me now, but they’re boys I wish I could have known when I was an actual young adult.

In The Unexpected Everything, Andie’s summer is turned upside down when her father’s political scandal causes her to lose her place in a competitive summer program.  Stuck at home and desperate to get out of the house, she takes a job as a dog walker and befriends Clark, a young, shy, bestselling author.  Clark has a great personality, sure, but imagine finding out that your summer crush is a bestselling author!

The Big F’s leading lady, Danielle, has a similarly upturned life.  When she unexpectedly fails a class during her senior year of high school, her admission to her dream school is revoked.  She enrolls at a community college to get her life back on track and develops surprising feelings for her seemingly grumpy co-worker, Porter.  Not only is Porter a total dreamboat, but he also helps Dani stay on the straight and narrow when it comes to her classes.

Kate’s been crushing on the school’s football star for years.  Now, in her senior year of high school, she’s made it her mission to go to prom with him.  The plan?  Have her friend Cooper teach her how to flirt her way into Mick’s heart.  Operation Prom Date is a go, but what happens when Kate realizes that Cooper is better than Mick in every possible way?

Who are your favorite love interests?

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten favorite romances

Happy Top Ten Tuesday! In honor of Valentine’s Day, today is all about romance! Specifically, favorite romance tropes.  I have a few favorite tropes, so I’ll break it down by category.  I also want to say that it was so hard to choose just ten books overall, so please please please, if you want more examples, let me know!

Imagine not only living by someone your own age, but having that person be utterly adorable and having them feel the same about you.  Never happened to me, but it seems like it would be great.

Examples:

I love a book (and a guy) that can make me laugh. Sometimes I’m up for some serious heartache, and other times I just want something light.  It’s very, very rare that a rom-com will disappoint me.

Examples:

I don’t know if I’d go for my opposite in real life, but sometimes reading about people who are like night and day that actually end up falling in love is great.  It’s particularly great when one is a grumpy jerk and the other is a ray of sunshine.

Examples:

Is there anybody alive who hasn’t fallen in love with their best friend at some point? Whether anything came of it or not, I think we all have a soft spot for these stories.

Examples:

I swore I would never get into “those stepbrother books.”  Well, I did.  Oops.  It’s not so much the taboo for me, but they always have such good buildup before anything happens!  These authors make you work for it! There’s none of this sex-by-page-two nonsense with this trope.

Examples:

Honorable mentions (or, if this were called Top Twenty Tuesday):

  • rockstar romance
  • best friend’s brother
  • brother’s best friend
  • unexpected coworkers
  • roommates

What are your favorite tropes?

Book review: The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

Goodreads   Amazon

As the daughter of a politician, Andie has led a very privileged life. She’s all set to spend her summer at an exclusive pre-pre-med program for high school students when she receives a devastating phone call: she’s been dropped from the program at the very last minute due to her father’s pending corruption investigation. Andie is angry. She’s lived her entire life as the perfect daughter. She’s carefully avoided doing anything that might reflect badly on her father. She’s gotten perfect grades in school. She arranged these plans months ago, and now something completely out of her control has ruined everything.

Now, instead of beefing up her resume and making her college applications look better, Andie’s stuck at home for the summer. All the good jobs are taken, and the only thing she can find is a flyer for walking dogs. It’s not something Andie would have chosen for herself, but her only other choice is sitting at home all summer, and who wants that?

Andie spends as much time out of the house as she possibly can. When she’s not working, she’s out with her friends. Her father was never around while she was growing up. After her mother died of ovarian cancer, he delegated the parenting duties to a long string of nannies, interns, and aides. But now, with his political career on hold due to the investigation, he’s home. All of a sudden, he feels like raising a child again, and Andie is furious at him for not only ruining her summer plans, but also imposing a curfew out of nowhere and putting an end to her free reign. While their summer starts out rocky, Andie and her father make a strong effort to repair their relationship and get back the connection they had when she was a young girl.

In the midst of everything, Andie meets Clark, a young, shy, homeschooled, best-selling author who is very much her opposite. They begin a relationship, and although Andie has previously adhered to a list of rules about dating (break up with them before they can break up with you, never date anyone longer than three weeks, never fall in love), she finds that Clark is different from any boy she’s been with before. Not only is Clark an amazing guy, but he fits right in with her tight-knit group of friends.

The Unexpected Everything is, like all of Matson’s books, very well-written. It’s funny, it’s sad, it’s charming, and it’s cute. I loved that various characters from Since You’ve Been Gone kept popping up at the most opportune moments. I also loved what a big role animals played in this book, because you’ll rarely find me without my pets by my side. (In fact, I have a cat sleeping on my lap as I type this review.)

Was the book perfect? No. Not many books are. But I still gave it five stars because I loved it so much. I loved how it tackled balancing friendships, relationships, and family connections. It put me in a great mood.

And I would love to read Clark’s book. Can Matson do a Rainbow Rowell and actually publish A Murder of Crows? Please?

Final rating: ★★★★★