In 2016, I made a goal of only reading books by people I know. By “people I know,” I mean either those I have met (online or in person ), or at the very least, those I have seen speak at a writing conference. In other words, people I have been in the same room with at some point in time, or perhaps interviewed on my blog.
Since I have become much more involved in various writing organizations, and since starting this blog, I have become acquainted with many fabulous writers. I wanted to support my new friends and colleagues by buying and reading their books. This, however; was not purely an altruistic decision; many of their books also sounded awesome!
I am so glad that I made this decision! I ended up reading many books that had been on my “To Read” list for a while, and I had a very enjoyable reading year. I’d love to recap a few of my favorites:
I ended 2015 reading TRAIL OF SECRETS by fellow Fire & Ice YA author Laura Wolfe. This was really my official kick-off to my decision to read books by people I know. Laura has been a Twitter buddy and appeared on my blog. Her mystery has the perfect blend of teen girl drama, sketchy characters and intrigue.
It seemed appropriate to launch 2016 with another fellow Fire & Ice YA author, DG Driver, who has also appeared on my blog more than once. CRY OF THE SEA, the first book in her Juniper Sawfeather Series, was a great way to start off the year. Mermaids, environmental themes, and a splash (no pun intended) of romance all drew me into Juniper Sawfeather’s world.
You might recall that I started listening to audio books in 2016. I even blogged about how rediscovering audio books was life changing. My first audio book of the year was Jeff Markowitz’s DEATH AND WHITE DIAMONDS. I met Jeff through Mystery Writers of America. This book is laugh out-loud funny, and a great mystery as well.
I really enjoyed so many of the books I read this year. It’s hard to pick my favorites, but here are a few more that really blew me away.
FIGHTING CHANCE by B.K. Stevens. I met online B.K. Stevens through the Sisters in Crime listserve. She also appeared on my blog. This action packed YA mystery got me interested in Krav Maga and kept me turning pages.
A FRONT PAGE AFFAIR by Radha Vatsal. I met Radha through Mystery Writers of America, and have had the pleasure of getting to know her at a variety of writing events over the last year. This intriguing historical mystery immersed me in the world of Kitty Weeks. I can’t wait for the next book in the series!
THE DROWNING GAME by L.S.. Hawker. I met L.S. HAwker at ThrillerFest 2016, where were were fellow debut novelists. This may have been my absolute favorite book of the year!
So, what will my 2017 year in books look like? As much as I had thought I would steer off the “books by people I know” path, I don’t want to!
I started off the year with BODY AND BONE by L.S. Hawker (and interviewing her on my blog) Loved it!
I also just started listening to M.K. Graff’s DEATH UNSCRIPTED on audible. I thoroughly enjoyed all three books in Graff’s Nora Tierney series, which I listened to on audible in 2016; I love stepping into the worlds she creates.
I definitely plan to read some short story anthologies this year, since I am writing more short stories these days. I’ll be starting with FAST WOMEN AND NEON LIGHTS: EIGHTIES-INSPIRED NEON NOIR, in which my short story “Big Hair, Banana Clips and the Figure-Four Leg Lock” is published. OK, I know I’m biased, but I’ve read a couple of stories in it (other than my own) already, and they are like, totally rad!
I’d love to know what’s on your “TO READ” list for 2017! Feel free to comment below, and visit me on Goodreads!