Generally speaking, the characters make the book for me, so yay, I can expanded upon my favorite books by listing more with an emphasis on the engaging or compelling characters who people the stories.
I tend to be harder on heroines so I was thrilled to see that a bunch of them made my list for this year.
Save Your Breath by Melinda Leigh
Morgan and Lance have been favorite characters since the first moment I met them and I have kept up my love affair with this pair through six books. Morgan is the widowed mother of three adorable girls, a formidable defense attorney, good with a gun or self-defense move, and the investigative and romance partner to Lance who is a former cop turned private investigator. Their smart and exciting and I can’t get enough of their thrilling cases.
Salvatore by Cecy Robson
Salvatore Romero has been raising his younger brothers alone and had to make a deal with the devil (aka the mafia boss who was his friend) to keep them all together and out of foster care. I love how he fights to hold the line even while everything is against him. He is living in a shades of gray world and I enjoyed seeing him get his chance to prove he was a true hero.
Wolf Rebel by Paige Tyler
Rachel is a SWAT team member and a werewolf. She’s vulnerable because she’s suffering from PTSD, but she’s capable and that was before she teamed up with former SEAL and former werewolf hunter Knox. I loved seeing him believe in her and work well together.
Dragon’s Claw by Karen Chance
Dory Basarab, dhampir daughter to a vampire prince and powerful vampire senator was the first kick-butt heroine of urban fantasy that I came to love. I hero worship Dory who is the underdog and leads with her heart, but she’s tough and doesn’t know when she’s beat so she finds a way.
Nothing to Fear by Juno Rushdan
Top black ops assassin and interrogator Gideon Stone meets his perfect match in brilliant computer genius and shy recluse Willow. What a great action romance pair! Sexy, smart, and a bit of fun tossed in to make them perfect.
Season of the Raven by Denise Domning
Sir Faucon de Ramis is a poor, beleaguered knight who has been given a tough job of investigating all deaths not brought on by natural causes in the shire. I do love this underdog knight with his wry sense of humor, ability to hold his patience, and keen insight who can fight, but chooses his battles whether by wit or sword carefully.
If I Ever by S.E. Jakes
Prophet and Tom have been driving me up the wall for several books now. Both lethal and hot as sin and both capable of getting into intensely dangerous situations without trying. Sadly, this was their final book. But, there’s always the rest of their gang of black ops buddies…
Who Slays the Wicked by C.S. Harris
Sebastian and Hero are my absolute favorite historical era couple. They tag team to solve some of the most twisting and gruesome murders while forging a lasting love out of an arranged marriage. Hero is an intimidating woman and Sebastian loves her for it, but also respects deeply.
Holy Sister by Mark Lawrence
Nona Grey is the toughest nun you could ever meet. She is a fighter from the start and goes up against incredible odds to survive and save her world. I loved seeing her come into her own over the course of the trilogy that ended in a riveting grand finale in this one.
The Ghost of Christmas Past by Angie Fox
Verity isn’t anyone’s idea of a tough girl, but I love how she makes lemonade out of lemons and was willing to be scorned and mocked to do the right thing for other people. It doesn’t hurt that she has a hilarious gangster ghost partner and handsome, adorable sheriff’s deputy for a boyfriend.
What characters were memorable for you this year or make you auto-buy each new release so quick? Do Tell!
My thanks to Anne @ Books Are My Heart for hosting the Top Ten week-long event. You can visit her site and see the schedule here: https://booksofmyheart.net/2019/11/24/top-10-books-in-2019/