Spoiler Alert – I am not an author. But I am a huge fan of their work. I read and review mostly Indie Authors. I work with a few of them here in Austin, Texas and I have found that I enjoy the variety of their stories. I was starting to feel like everything coming from a traditional publisher was looking like a cookie cutter version of another book.
Here is the top 5 (ok it was supposed to be 5 but it’s 6 – words are my thing not numbers!) best Indie books I have read this year. This list is in no particular order as I could not figure out what should be 1 versus 6. I had a hard time keeping it to 6 and I kept taking ones off and putting on others. I finally decided to list those I remember the best. This is my final answer! I have also include my top 2 traditionally published books at the end of this blog (exceptions to the cookie cutter!)
The Doctor’s Wife by Myra Hargrave McIlvain – I met this firecracker of an author at the Texas Book Festival and this is the second book I have read by her. This Historical Fiction was realistic and presented in a way that placed me at the scenes. I can’t wait to get my hands on another one of her books.
Justifiable Homicide by Jeffrey Warren – This one was a hit with myself and my husband (who reads about 6 books a year and is very choosy – he is constantly starting and dismissing books – but not this one). I met this author at the Tucson Festival of Books and he greeted me with “this book has all 5 stars reviews” – I rarely give 5 stars and I could not resist the challenge – well he was right! This thriller kept me on the edge of my seat for 2 days without stop! (my husband had it ½ way done before we left the festival!)
Evidence of Desire by Jessie Scott – I read very little romance (and yet 2 are on this list) because I am extremely selective with this genre. This book was a great story with real characters and realistic sexual issues – everything is not perfect for the characters and I for one was glad! Plus the characters have real lives with interesting jobs that the author brought to life.
Redemption of the Fallen by Wendy Anderson – This was the second in this Fantasy series. I have little experience with reading Fantasy because I usually do not like this genre. I find it unrealistic – I know that is the point but if I cannot relate in some way I don’t enjoy it. This fantasy pulled me right in and I did not want to leave that world. The author’s wording and timing is wonderful.
Mercer Street Murders by Aaron S Gallagher – This is the third in this series – I have read them all and I think he writes some of the best characters I have seen. It helps that they are a little sarcastic and the series take places right before cell phones – when PI’s had to work the street to figure things out. Every book is like a puzzle with the author giving you pieces as you go along until you see the whole picture.
In The Weeds by Ruthie Robinson – There are so many people that need to read this book. Ruthie is a romance (more like steamy sex scenes) writer but this book deals with the issue of race and it is beautifully handled. Disclosure – I have read all of Ruthie’s books and she always has a wonderful story to go with the steam – this time she really out did herself. So, go for the steam and stay for the incredible thought process she presents.
Traditionally Published Favorites
Eat Cake, Be Brave by Melissa Radke – Youtube celebrity that is so much more. I laughed, cried and laughed again. For every woman to read, and then be brave!
The Far Empty by J. Todd Scott – Just OMG – I have given this book to several people and they are always blown away. He has a new one out – it’s on my shelf and I even paid for the hardback!! I have seen this author speak twice and both times I walked away with his book.