Lola’s Rambings is a feature on Lola’s Review where I talk about me. Usually these posts are everything that doesn’t fall under any standard header, like blog tours, book blitzes, cover reveals or reviews. Lola’s Ramblings posts are are personal discussions of a certain topic. Sometimes about book related topics and sometimes about non-book related topics. If an Lola’s Ramblings post is about a non-book topic it gets the non-book content posts tag. This feature was previously known as About Me. The banner for this feature is designed by Michelle from Limabean Design.
Compared to earlier years, 2014 and was a slow reading year for me. I was surprised when I actually managed to reach my reading goal of 75 on goodreads and surpass. But mostly that’s thanks to reading a lot of novella’s, which are great for making it seem like you still read a lot of books.
In total I read 86 books this year and I wanted to show you my favourite books this year in this post. So far I have ended every previous year with a post like this as well. I don’t rate a lot of books 5 stars, so I will list all the books I gave 5 stars this year. In total 15 books received a 5 star rating from me this year.
Best books I read in 2014
Taut: The Ford book
by JA Huss
Ford Aston is known for many things. Being an emotionless, messed up bastard, a freakishly smart social outcast, and a cold, domineering master who keeps “pets” instead of girlfriends.
And after Rook broke his heart, he plans to keep it that way.
Ashleigh is known for nothing, and that’s exactly what she’s got going for her. She’s broke, stranded in the mountains with a three month old baby, and Ford Aston is screwing with her head.
And she plans to mess with his right back.
It’s a coy game at first, filled with flirting, and innuendo–but Ford soon realizes something is not quite right with Ashleigh. In fact, something is seriously, seriously wrong and the closer they get to their final destination, the closer Ford gets to the truth.
One night of devastation, self-loathing, and emptiness turns into the best thing that ever happened to Ford Aston. But one day of in-your-face reality threatens Ashleigh’s whole existence.
Sing Sweet Nightingale (The Dreams War Saga #1)
by Erica Cameron
Mariella Teagen hasn’t spoken a word in four years.
She pledged her voice to Orane, the man she loves—someone she only sees in her dreams. Each night, she escapes to Paradise, the world Orane created for her, and she sings for him. Mariella never believed she could stay in Paradise longer than a night, but two weeks before her eighteenth birthday, Orane hints that she may be able to stay forever.
Hudson Vincent made a pledge to never fight again.
Calease, the creature who created his dream world, swore that giving up violence would protect Hudson. But when his vow caused the death of his little brother, Hudson turned his grief on Calease and destroyed the dream world. The battle left him with new abilities and disturbing visions of a silent girl in grave danger—Mariella.
Now, Hudson is fighting to save Mariella’s life while she fights to give it away. And he must find a way to show her Orane’s true intentions before she is lost to Paradise forever.
Read my review of Sing Sweet Nightingale here
Face Time (Love in the Digital Age #1)
By SJ Pajonas
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age category: Adult
Release Date: April 25, 2014
After the best first date ever, Lee thought Laura was funny, intelligent, and impulsive; a whirlwind of bright laughter and happiness. Laura loved Lee’s sweet smile and the way he expertly filled in every awkward pause. He held her hand and then pulled her in for the most perfect kiss she’s had in years. What could possibly be wrong? Just the 7000 miles that separates them the next day.
Even though Lee has gone home to Seoul, Laura can’t stop thinking about him. What starts as an innocent text thanking him for their dinner date becomes something much more: someone either of them can’t live without. But Laura’s got a live-in mother going through a midlife crisis, and Lee’s stressful traveling schedule means they’ll be apart for some time. Life, family, and a complicated past also get in the way, and they’re both going to need actual face time to figure it out.
Told from both Lee and Laura’s point of view, FACE TIME is a funny, romantic, modern-day story about two people who connect across the world.
Read my review of Face Time here
Wild Justice (Nadia Stafford #3)
by Kelley Armstrong
Protect the innocent. If there is any one principle that drives hit man Nadia Stafford, it’s this. In her own mind, when she was thirteen, she failed to protect her older cousin Amy from being murdered. Now she fails again, disastrously, when she botches a hit. To help her find her equilibrium, her mentor, Jack, brings her a gift: the location and new identity of the predator who killed her cousin and disappeared after the case against him failed.
Vengeance, justice? With the predator in her sights, nothing seems more right, more straightforward, more easy. But finding justice is never as simple as it seems.
Read my review of Wild Justice here
Foretold (Sisters of Fate #1)
by Rinda Elliott
It is written that three Sisters of Fate have the power
to change the world’s destiny.
But only if they survive…
The Lockwood triplets have had the prophecy drummed into their heads since birth. Still, Raven, the eldest of the sisters, can’t believe it’s really happening. She’s the reincarnation of a Norse goddess? One of the sisters is destined to die? When it starts snowing in summer in Florida, the sisters fear the worst has come to pass. Ragnarok, the Norse end of the world, has begun.
Raven finds herself the secret protector of Vanir, a boy with two wolves, a knowledge of Norse magic and a sense of destiny he can’t quite explain. He’s intense, sexy and equally determined to save her when it becomes clear someone is endangering them. Raven doesn’t know if getting closer to him will make a difference in the coming battle, but her heart isn’t giving her a choice.
Ahead of the sisters is the possibility of death at the hand of a warrior, death by snow, death by water or death by fire.
Or even from something else…
Sisters of Fate
The prophecy doesn’t lie: one is doomed to die.
Read my review of Foretold here
Centaur Legacy(Touched #2)
by Nancy Straight
Camille and Drake are on the run from the head of the Centaur Council, seeking the mythical pasture of Thessaly and a family heirloom that may keep them safe. As their journey progresses from the rolling hills of Ireland to the snow covered forests of South Dakota, Cami learns more about her mother’s secrets, including a twin brother and a Centaur legacy that puts a death warrant on her entire family.
Camille and Drake don’t know who to trust or where to hide. Camille’s family is quick to come to her aid, but who among them can be trusted?
A supernatural benefactor forces Drake to choose between being the man he wants to be and the Centaur warrior Camille needs him to be.
Read my review of Centaur Legacy here
Centaur Redemption (Touched #4)
by Nancy Straight
Cami and Drake’s honeymoon is cut short as they escape attacks by the Council Enforcers and head to South Africa for the meeting of the Centaur Council, which has ordered a death sentence on Cami and all members of the Lost Herd. The Council Chairman is her grandmother, her most dangerous foe. Surrounded by family and friends, Drake and Cami face the Council, Cami’s power-hungry uncles, an ambitious twin, taking the battle all the way to Zeus to attempt to win the freedom of the Tak herd.
Read my review of Centaur Redemption here
Fate Core System
by Leonard Balsera, Brian Engard, Jeremy Keller, Ryan Macklin and Mike Olsen
A High Priestess of the barbarian hordes, an undead Wild West gunslinger, and a Second Lieutenant of the Intergalactic Security Forces are about as different as they come, but they’ve got one thing in common: they need a strong engine to drive their stories.
Fate Core is that engine.
Fate Core is the latest evolution of the award-winning Fate roleplaying game system from Evil Hat Productions. We’ve streamlined and clarified the rules while maintaining the system’s trademark flexibility. Name your game; Fate Core can make it happen.
Read my review of Fate Core here
Free Souls (Mindjack Trilogy #3)
by Susan kaye Quinn
When your mind is a weapon, freedom comes at a price.
The final installment of the Mindjack Trilogy is here!
Four months have passed since Kira left home to join Julian’s Jacker Freedom Alliance, but the hole in her heart still whistles empty where her boyfriend Raf used to be. She fills it with weapons training, JFA patrols, and an obsessive hunt for FBI agent Kestrel, ignoring Julian’s worries about her safety and repeated attempts to recruit her for his revolutionary chat-casts. When anti-jacker politician Vellus surrounds Jackertown with the National Guard, Kira discovers there’s more to Julian’s concerns than she knew, but she’s forced to take on a mission that neither want and that might be her last: assassinating Senator Vellus before he can snuff out Julian’s revolution and the jackers she’s come to love.
For more information, see the Mindjack website.
In the meantime, you may want to check out my Mindjack Origins short stories!
Read my review of Free Souls here
Third Daughter (The Dharian Affairs Trilogy #1)
by Susan kaye Quinn
The Third Daughter of the Queen wants her birthday to arrive so she’ll be free to marry for love, but rumors of a new flying weapon may force her to accept a barbarian prince’s proposal for a peace-brokering marriage. Desperate to marry the charming courtesan she loves, Aniri agrees to the prince’s proposal as a subterfuge in order to spy on him, find the weapon, and hopefully avoid both war and an arranged marriage to a man she does not love.
Third Daughter is the first book in The Dharian Affairs Trilogy (Third Daughter, Second Daughter, First Daughter). This steampunk-goes-to-Bollywood (Bollypunk!) romance takes place in an east-indian-flavored alternate world filled with skyships, saber duels, and lots of royal intrigue. And, of course, kissing.
Read my review of Third Daughter here
Camp Payback (Camp Boyfriend #2)
by JK Rock
Alex has big plans for camp this year, starting with making it the best summer ever. Having fun and breaking some rules will get her the payback she wants against her parents and her ex-boyfriend. Because of his disgusting texts, she’s headed to a super strict all-girls school in the fall.
Then she meets Javier and revenge doesn’t seem nearly as important as getting to know the troubled loner determined to keep a low profile at camp. But Alex’s trouble-magnet personality and Javier’s need to stay in the background don’t mix nearly as well as their irresistible chemistry.
With her home life eroding under her feet and her last year of summer camp speeding to a close, Alex wants to make her mark on the world and squeeze every bit of fun out of her time with Javier. Too bad her old plans for revenge turn back on her just in time to ruin everything. Will she lose Javier too?
Read my review of Camp Payback here
Reunited (Nogiku series #3)
by SJ Pajonas
Yūsei has surprises for Sanaa Itami. The long trip across the stars ends with Mark Sakai delivering bad news from orbit over their new home, and there’s no turning back or moving on. Despite all their misgivings, this is where they will have to stay.
Sanaa, Jiro, and the rest of Earth’s settlers move into a coastal town and stick to their plans to live the colonization life they dreamed of. But Sanaa’s existence won’t be kept secret from her enemies for long. Kazuo promised he would see her in another life, on another world, and he aims to keep his word. Now she will face those who want their revenge and make new enemies while dispensing with old ones on her journey across the fascinating and unfamiliar landscape of Yūsei.
REUNITED, Book THREE of the Nogiku Series, is the third book in a captivating post-apocalyptic romance series that harnesses the cultures and traditions of Japan and sweeps them into the future between Earth and a faraway land.
Read my review of Reunited here
Gifted (Otherworld #13.4 and Cainsville #?)
by Kelley Armstrong
Contains two holiday stories, one Otherworld Pack and one Cainsville.
Gabriel’s Gargoyles – (Cainsville short story, Gabriel Walsh as 10 year old narrator.) Cainsville was where a boy could walk the streets safely at any time, day or night. Where everyone was genuinely glad to see you, and didn’t think you were odd if you wanted to keep to yourself. Because Cainsville was odd, too. For one thing, there are the gargoyles. Unlike the others, Gabriel doesn’t believe the carven creatures came to life to protect the town. It’s up to a boy to protect himself. Now he’s determined to find the last hidden gargoyle by winter Solstice. He’s also determined to get the perfect gift for his great-aunt Rose. And when Gabriel Walsh sets goals, he achieves them…one way or another.
The Puppy Plan (Otherworld novella, 9 year old Logan Danvers as narrator.) When Logan finds an puppy abandoned by the roadside a few days before Christmas, he knows it’s a sign. His sister Kate wants a dog more than anything. Their parents aren’t completely opposed to the idea. It’s just a bad time. A really bad time. Maybe next year. But now there’s this puppy in need of a home and a girl in need of a pet… So how does a boy who always plays by the rules give his sister what she wants most?
Debt Collector Season Two (Debt Collector #10-18)
by Susan Kaye Quinn
Urban Fantasy with a Cyberpunk Twist
***Second Season of Debt Collector***
Recommended: start with Season One.
*pre-order of the full season available
What’s your life worth on the open market?
In this gritty urban fantasy, debt collectors take your life energy and give it to someone more “worthy”… all while paying the price with black marks on their souls.
“Wraith is amazing and just as compelling as Lirium—once again I’m hooked!!”
“I loved being back in this world! Wraith has captivated me.”
Wraith is a shadow in the night, haunting the bedrooms of the rich “high potentials” who have stolen life energy from the desperate and dying. The justice and the sweet mercy hit that follow keep her from falling into her own personal abyss. Her secret nighttime work also keeps her on level for her real mission: carrying on her father’s legacy of attempting to bring an end to debt collection as a whole. But when a mysterious debt collector interrupts her in the act and discovers her secret, everything Wraith loves may be destroyed by the one thing she can never fix– the original sin of being a debt collector herself.
Contains mature content and themes.
OPTIONED FOR VIRTUAL REALITY BY IMMERSIVE ENTERTAINMENT
2014 Semi-Finalist in Science Fiction in the Kindle Book Awards
The nine episodes of Season Two of the Debt Collector serial are collectively 125k words or about 500 pages.
It is recommended that you start with the first season, but each season is a complete story for that debt collector and can serve as an entry point to the series. There are five planned seasons in the Debt Collector series, the first four each from the perspective of a different debt collector with the fifth season bringing all four together.
Read my review of Debt Collector Season Two here
Odin’s Ravens (The Blackwell Pages #2)
by K.L. Armstrong and M.A. Marr
Seven kids, Thor’s hammer, and a whole lot of Valkyries are the only things standing against the end of the world.
When thirteen-year-old Matt Thorsen, a modern day descendant of the Norse god Thor, was chosen to represent Thor in an epic battle to prevent the apocalypse he thought he knew how things would play out. Gather the descendants standing in for gods like Loki and Odin, defeat a giant serpent, and save the world. No problem, right?
But the descendants’ journey grinds to a halt when their friend and descendant Baldwin is poisoned and killed and Matt, Fen, and Laurie must travel to the Underworld in the hopes of saving him. But that’s only their first stop on their journey to reunite the challengers, find Thor’s hammer, and stop the apocalypse–a journey filled with enough tooth-and-nail battles and larger-than-life monsters to make Matt a legend in his own right.
Authors K.L. Armstrong and M.A. Marr return to Blackwell in the epic sequel to Loki’s Wolves with more explosive action, adventure and larger-than-life Norse legends.
Read my review of Odin’s Ravens here
So my question to you is:
I haven’t read any of these but thanks to you, I have a couple of Pajonas on my tablet now 😉
Red Iza recently posted…Livia Quinn : Storm crazy (Destiny paramortals #1)
I hope you get around to reading one of those SJ Pajonas books in 2015 ;). btw you made the top five of people who commented the most on my blog this year, thanks so much!
Lol. “A couple of Pajonas”. Love that. Thanks for being a supporter this year, Lola! I’m so glad you enjoyed my books, and it looks like you read many other great ones this year too. Here’s to 2015 being awesome! xo
S. J. Pajonas recently posted…2015: The Year I Say No
I hope to see some of your books on this list again next year :). It was a nice reading year, even though I didn’t got as much read in earlier years there were still a lot of good book.
What an awesome list – especially because so many of the titles are fairly obscure (to me, at least). I love that most of them aren’t books I see all over the place; I really want to pick up the debt collectors series, you’ve really put that one on my radar!
Berls @ Fantasy is More Fun recently posted…Out With The Old & In With The New | December 2014
While I read some of the more well known books, I also love reading books by indie authors that aren’t as well known. And I am glad to hear I put the Debt Collector series on your rader, I hope you decide to pick it up! It’s an amazing series.
Yay for Taut!! It was definitely a fav of mine as well. LOVE.FORD!! I recently one-clicked Face Time so I’m excited for that one. And I’ll have to put some of these others on my tbr. 🙂 I hope 2015 brings you many wonderful reads, Lola!
Bookworm Brandee recently posted…**Bought, Borrowed, & Bagged ~ #48**
I really enjoyed Taut and Ford is one of my favourite characters in that series. I hope you enjoy Face Time as much as I did. And I hope 2015 is a great year with wonderfull books for you as well.