Crawl in Your Hidey-Hole, Drink, and Read.

Ahhhhh, another book post!! HUZZAH!

This was actually a *really* tough list. If you take a look at my Goodreads list, you can see I read an epic fornicationton of series books this past year. In fact, I read far more books in–or beginning a series than not.

I like my books like I like my men….always keeping me guessing. (You thought I was going to say “long-lasting,” didn’t you? You’re filthy. Get thy head out of the gutter!)

I really enjoy the scandent nature of a serial narrative. Because I read so quickly, I like knowing there’s more to enjoy. Yes, there is something to be said about a phenomenal standalone novel, (and a book post with the best of those to come) but I love being involved in the long-term metamorphosis of a character. Sometimes, a character turns into a butterfly over seven or ten books. Sometimes? Well, sometimes they turn into assholes. (I’m looking at you, Sookie Stackhouse!–I still love you, though. Let’s do imaginary lunch, k?)

Don’t look at me like I’m crazy. I don’t need verification. I’m already in academia.

Let’s get this list going, shall we? It’s lengthy…you know, just how I like my…..

scrabble games.

(as per usual, the picture is a link!)

First up! A book series I ALWAYS buy on both audible and kindle/physical book…

The Iron Druid Chronicles by Kevin Hearne. Narrated by Luke Daniels. Not only was this book ohholyfuckingtacossogood, it surpassed previous books in the series. That is damn HUGE for a long-lived series. The narration is incredible–like, my three year old not waking at five am–incredible. Bonus to the narration? I CAN’T FUCKING READ OR PRONOUNCE IRISH GAELIC. Luke Daniels says the words out loud, so the names in the book make sense. “Siodhachan o Suileabhain?” ummm, in my head that looks like “no fucking way not even gonna try–let’s call him ‘Steve.'” Or Atticus, whatever.

The storyline also gave me my favorite line of the entire year…

shattered

The book also contains another favorite quote…

salami

NEXT!

Ohhhh, Merit. You may believe (wrongly) that pizza can be four-inches deep and stuffed full of meat, 😉 but I love you. If you were as real in life as you are on the pages, I would correct you of this notion. You’ve apparently been misinformed. (Didn’t you go to NYU?!?! For SHAME!)

This is the TENTH book in the series. That means, if you start now, you could have your reading dance card punched THROUGH THE NEW YEAR. (Or, at least NYE.) Is it Urban Fantasy? Is it romance? IS IT A HOT SWEDISH GUY ROLLING AROUND WITH A FIERCE AND SMART BRUNETTE DANCER? It is all of these things. More importantly, I just re-read this one, (Ok, it was read to me) and it’s even better the second time.

All good things must come to an end, but I WASN’T READY. I’m secretly figuring out how to make supernatural stuff real so that I can bewitch Deborah Harkness into creating another book in this world–revolving around Gallowglass and his own lady. HE DESERVES HIS OWN LADY!! *because, he is, of course, 100% real and not the figment of Deborah Harkness’ imagination.* This book held me in an iron fist and didn’t let up until I closed it. Obviously, Gallowglass still has one arm around my waist. I don’t mind.

The depths to which I love Mercy Thompson cannot be overstated. Let’s also Bechdel/race test this book, shall we? 1) Mercy is Native American/Bi-racial. 2) She COMPLETELY kicks all of the ass. 3)She’s just one of many non-white people, or women, or non-white women who kick ALL OF THE ASS in these novels. 4)Her closest friend is a gay werewolf. 5) She is college-educated but works in a blue-collar, male-dominated field. 6) Her cat is named Medea. (Ok, that’s not Bechdel-y per se, but still kick ass.) She also rocks some serious ink. (like many awesome ladies I know.)

These books are a wild ride, let me tell you. They are funny, fast, intense reads that grip you by the ovaries/brovaries and twist. Trust me, that only sounds like an unpleasant experience. Honest to Pete, you never are quite sure how things are going to turn out. Oddly, though, it’s the dialogue that I like the best.

“Desandra shrugged her shoulders. “Hey, Kate? Have you thought of walking up to Hugh and telling him that he’s got the biggest dick ever?” She spread her arms to the size of a baseball bat.
“No, you think it would work?” I asked.
“It’s worth a try. May be he’ll be so happy you noticed his pork sword, he’ll forget all about trying to kill us.”
Pork sword. Kill me now. “I’ll think about it.”
Ascanio began patting his clothes.
“What?” Derek growled.
“Looking for something to take notes with.”
Ilona Andrews, Magic Breaks

If I were to ever be with the son of Satan, I’d want him to be just like Reyes Farrow. I’d want quippy Gilmore Girls-esque dialogue with our friends. However, don’t ever expect me to be responsible in the apocalypse. If zombies ever take over, I’m sure to be the first to die. The only thing I have going for me is a lot of tech knowledge and the ability to run 26 or more miles without stopping. Thank heavens Charley Davidson is almost-could-be-maybe ready to battle for us. Darynda Jones is one of those authors you think, “damn, she’d be so much fun to play Uno with and get drunk together.” This book was pee-your-pants funny, and stick-in-your-filling sweet. I loved it.

This is book #14(!!!!) in the series Immortals After Dark. The title of the series, and shirtless state of the man on the book should give you some content clues about this book. Kresley Cole is EASILY my favorite author of books I’d rather my mother not know I read. (prepare for a hella run-on) She turns your crank and then makes you laugh so hard you forgot your crank was turned and your husband looks at you like you’re nuts because you were absent-mindedly stroking his thigh and then you smack him while laughing with tears running down your face. So you should probably read these.

 

Two from Elizabeth Hunter. She had a rather prodigious year–as did the next and last author on the list–Penny Reid. I waited for what seemed like ten elephant pregnancies for Desert Bound to be released. Thank all of the gods it lived up to every expectation I had for it. I have gifted this series no fewer than SIX times. SIX. I’m like the Oprah of Elizabeth Hunter books.

The Irin Chronicles series is so different from most of the PNR/fantasy books I’ve read that I just keep coming back to read bits and pieces of it. When I closed The Singer, I thought, “Damn, now isn’t that just something else!” Granted, Elizabeth Hunter hasn’t written anything I’ve not loved, but that’s true of several authors.*winks at Kurt Vonnegut* That doesn’t mean I’m going to stump for them on my blog. Incidentally, Irin was just released on audible, and they’re MINE MINE ALLMINE!

This book. OMG, romance is NOT dead, guys!! This book wrapped me in a haven-y blanket of hot man-bun/beard action, and then sang to my soul with the sweet, and not-at-all-awkward, guitar playing, poetry writing dude. Not to mention, it takes place deep in the heart of the mountains, which just reminds me of family. I don’t think there’s a “Cletus” in my clan, but there’s a Cline…and a Clinton…Elza…Gaynor…This book requires three things: tissues, Tempranillo, and time. It’s not that long, but there’s a lot of time spent gasping. (by the reader, not the author.)

NOW?!?! booze. Because? 1300 words for a blog post. Time to drank.

Also, Amy and My awesome bookclub deserves a cocktail of the month. Join us. We’re reading Atwood.

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Pattitini

It’s as if a candy cane joe-joe had a love-child with your future hangover.

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Pattitini Dark Chocolate Peppermint Pattitini Dark Chocolate Peppermint Pattitini

Dark Chocolate Peppermint Pattitini

by Cat Bowen

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Keywords: beverage dessert

Ingredients

  • 2 oz dark chocolate Godiva liqueur
  • 1 oz peppermint vodka (or just fill a glass with vodka and about 15 peppermints and let it sit overnight in the fridge, use an ounce of that)
  • 1 tsp dark chocolate syrup

optional

  • melted dark chocolate, ground oreo cookies, and crushed mints for the rim

Instructions

shake liqueurs and syrup with ice

rim glass with first, melted dark chocolate, and then roll in a cookie crumb and peppermint mix

pour neat.

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