Best Books of 2016

Saturday, December 31, 2016

2017 is fast approaching and with it comes a ton of books that I absolutely cannot wait to read. But before I dive into what’s coming, it’s time to take a look back at the books of 2016. I read 152 books this year, many of which I loved and fortunately only a few that I don’t care to revisit. I tried 33 new (to me) authors, and found some amazing authors whose books I cannot do without (Kerrigan Byrne, Samanthe Beck, Valerie Bowman, Kristi Charish, Chanel Cleeton, Stacy Reid, Tiffany Reisz, and Katee Robert are now on my autobuy list). And finally, I participated in my seventh A to Z Reading Challenge, a fun challenge that usually leads me to at least a couple of books I might not have moved to the top of my TBR pile otherwise.

I was fortunate enough to read a number of fantastic books this year, so it was incredibly difficult to pick my favorites. Try as I might, I couldn’t narrow it down to a top ten list, so this year it’s going to be the top sixteen books that I read in 2016:

Wit and Sin Best Books of 2016

Top Sixteen Books of 2016
Top Re-Reads of 2016


My Top Sixteen Books of 2016

Note: My picks weren’t all published in 2016, but all were new-to-me reads for the year.
Also note: The books are alphabetized by author as I love them all equally.


Magic Binds Cover 1. Magic Binds (Kate Daniels, Book 9) by Ilona Andrews
My Review | Purchase Link






Rock Chick Reckoning Cover 2. Rock Chick Reckoning (Rock Chick, Book 6) by Kristen Ashley
My Review | Purchase Link




The Highwayman Cover 3. The Highwayman (Victorian Rebels, Book 1) by Kerrigan Byrne
Purchase Link






The Hunter Cover 4. The Hunter (Victorian Rebels, Book 2) by Kerrigan Byrne
Purchase Link






The Voodoo Killings Cover 5. The Voodoo Killings (Kincaid Strange, Book 1) by Kristi Charish
Purchase Link




Fly with Me Cover 6. Fly with Me (Wild Aces, Book 1) by Chanel Cleeton
My Review | Purchase Link






Duke of Sin Cover 7. Duke of Sin (Maiden Lane, Book 10) by Elizabeth Hoyt
My Review | Purchase Link






The Study of Seduction Cover 8. The Study of Seduction (Sinful Suitors, Book 2) by Sabrina Jeffries
My Review | Purchase Link






The Goal Cover 9. The Goal (Off-Campus, Book 4) by Elle Kennedy
My Review | Purchase Link






Den of Wolves Cover 10. Den of Wolves (Blackthorn & Grim, Book 3) by Juliet Marillier
My Review | Purchase Link






His Royal Secret Cover 11. His Royal Secret (His Royal Secret, Book 1) by Lilah Pace
My Review Coming Soon | Purchase Link






His Royal Secret Cover 12. 'Til Death Do Us Part by Amanda Quick
My Review | Purchase Link






Accidentally Compromising the Duke Cover 13. Accidentally Compromising the Duke (Wedded by Scandal, Book 1) by Stacy Reid
My Review | Purchase Link





 Her Naughty Holiday Cover 14. Her Naughty Holiday (Men at Work, Book 2) by Tiffany Reisz
My Review | Purchase Link






The Perfect Fit Cover 15. The Perfect Fit (Riley O’Brien & Co., Book 2.5) by Jenna Sutton
My Review | Purchase Link






Tied Score Cover 16. Tied Score (Slices of Pi, Book 2) by Elia Winters
My Review | Purchase Link









My Top Re-Reads of 2016


Rock Chick Cover 1. Rock Chick (Rock Chick, Book 1) by Kristen Ashley
Purchase Link




Blood Red Kiss Cover 2. The Warlord Wants Forever (Immortals After Dark, Book 1) by Kresley Cole
My Review | Purchase Link
Note: This story is now available in the Blood Red Kiss anthology




Judgment in Death Cover 3. Judgment in Death (In Death, Book 11) by J.D. Robb
Purchase Link

Friday in Review

Friday, December 30, 2016

Happy (almost) New Year!

Cold weather is the perfect time to curl up with a good book, and I've finished 2016 with some great reads. Tomorrow I'll be posting my best of 2016 list, but for now here are the newest reviews I’ve written here on Wit and Sin. The master list and categorical lists on the right-hand side are updated as well.

The latest reviews:
- Wound Tight (Made in Jersey, Book 4) by Tessa Bailey
- Hard Compromise (Compromise Me, Book 2) by Samanthe Beck
- Duke of Pleasure (Maiden Lane, Book 11) by Elizabeth Hoyt
- The Heiress and the Hothead (The Sinful Suitors, Book 1.5) by Sabrina Jeffries
- The Governess Was Wanton (Governess, Book 2) by Julia Kelly
- Ruled (Outlaws, Book 3) by Elle Kennedy
- Den of Wolves (Blackthorn & Grim, Book 3) by Juliet Marillier
- Marry Me on Main Street (Cricket Creek, Book 11) by LuAnn McLane
- School Ties by Tamsen Parker
- Her Naughty Holiday (Men at Work, Book 2) by Tiffany Reisz
- Archangel’s Heart (Guild Hunter, Book 9) by Nalini Singh


Upcoming reviews:
- The Conquering Dark (Crown & Key, Book 3) by Clay and Susan Griffith
- Skies of Steel (The Ether Chronicles, Book 3) by Zoƫ Archer
- The Wicked Deeds of Daniel Mackenzie (Mackenzies & McBrides, Book 6) by Jennifer Ashley
- Wild Man (Dream Man, Book 2) by Kristen Ashley
- Paper and Fire (The Great Library, Book 2) by Rachel Caine
- The Invisible Library (The Invisible Library, Book 1) by Genevieve Cogman
- The Masked City (The Invisible Library, Book 2) by Genevieve Cogman
- Wicked Ever After (Blud, Book 4) by Delilah S. Dawson
- How to Ravish a Rake (How to Series, Book 3) by Vicky Dreiling
- Finding Fraser by kc dyer
- Soul Weaver by Hailey Edwards
- Fire Bound (Sea Haven, Book 5) by Christine Feehan
- Bound Together (Sea Haven, Book 6) by Christine Feedhan
- At Last by Addison Fox
- His Game, Her Rules by Charlene Groome
- Base Instincts (Demonica) by Larissa Ione
- The Thing About Love by Julie James
- The Volatile Amazon (Alliance of the Amazons, Book 4) by Sandy James
- Breathe (In Vino Veritas, Book 2) by Lauren Jameson
- Linger (In Vino Veritas, Book 3) by Lauren Jameson
- When the Rogue Returns (The Duke’s Men, Book 2) by Sabrina Jeffries
- The Art of Sinning (Sinful Suitors, Book 1) by Sabrina Jeffries
- Archer (Hard Body, Book 1) by Debra Kayn
- The Governess Was Wild (Governess, Book 3) by Julia Kelly
- Fair Chance (All’s Fair, Book 3) by Josh Lanyon
- Before You Break (Between Breaths, Book 2) by Christina Lee
- There You Stand (Between Breaths, Book 5) by Christina Lee
- Yours All Along (Loving on the Edge, Book 6.5) by Roni Loren
- Break Me Down (Loving on the Edge, Book 8.5) by Roni Loren
- Kiss of Steel (London Steampunk, Book 1) by Bec McMaster
- Captive Prince (Captive Prince, Book 1) by C.S. Pacat
- Prince’s Gambit (Captive Prince, Book 2) by C.S. Pacat
- Kings Rising (Captive Prince, Book 3) by C.S. Pacat
- His Royal Secret (His Royal Secret, Book 1) by Lilah Pace
- His Royal Favorite (His Royal Secret, Book 2) by Lilah Pace
- Raw Desire by Kate Pearce
- Soul Sucker by Kate Pearce
- The Fifth Favor by Shelby Reed
- Wicked in His Arms (Wedded by Scandal, Book 2) by Stacy Reid
- Laugh (Burnside, Book 2) by Mary Ann Rivers
- Beauty’s Kingdom (Sleeping Beauty, Book 4) by A. N. Roquelaure
- Rock Addiction (Rock Kiss, Book 1) by Nalini Singh
- Fighting the Fall (Beyond the Cage, Book 2) by Jennifer Snow
- The Angels’ Share (The Bourbon Kings, Book 2) by J.R. Ward
- A Reluctant Betrothal (The Grantham Girls, Book 3) by Amanda Weaver
- Single Player (Slices of Pi, Book 3) by Elia Winters
- Takeover by Anna Zabo

Review: Her Naughty Holiday by Tiffany Reisz

Her Naughty Holiday by Tiffany Reisz
Series: Men at Work, Book 2
Publisher: Harlequin Blaze
Genre: Erotic Contemporary Romance Her Naughty Holiday Cover
ISBN: 9780373799206
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

A feast she wasn’t expecting!

Clover Greene would sooner crawl into her oven than host family for Thanksgiving dinner. Yet another annual ritual of too much food, served with a side of criticism over “Clover’s Bad Life Choices.” This year, she needs to distract them all—with a handsome fake boyfriend. And she has the perfect guy in mind.

Contractor Erick Fields is the poster boy for sexy single dads, and Clover has been secretly crushing on him for ages. She certainly wasn’t expecting Erick to agree to her insane charade…or to add lots of hot, wicked sex to the deal. If they can pull it off, the worst Thanksgiving ever might give them something to be really thankful for!

Her Naughty Holiday is one of my favorite books of 2016! Clover and Erick’s story has everything I want in a romance – it’s sexy, heartwarming, and genuinely funny. Tiffany Reisz has a gift for blending eroticism with snappy humor and she’s an author who is now on my autobuy list because of this book.

Clover is a hardworking businesswoman who built her own company from the ground up and has made a smashing success of it. But that’s not good enough for her family, who may love her, but who criticize Clover constantly, never seeing her for the amazing, talented person she is. All they can focus on is the fact that she’s not married and reproducing, and anyone with a family like that would be stressed about them invading their home for Thanksgiving. With a little push from her helpful teenage employee, Clover asks single dad Erick to be her fake boyfriend for the holidays, just so she can get her family off her back.

What starts off as a crazy plan turns into a very real, very hot romance. Clover is a fantastic heroine who deserves an equally fantastic hero, and Erick fits the bill perfectly. He’s a divorced single dad with a snarky environmentalist/neo-pagan teenage daughter (who is so funny she threatens to steal the show), a contractor with a business of his own, and is kind and sexy-as-hell to boot. I fell for him immediately. Clover has a few insecurities about her looks and Erick never dismisses them, but instead lets her know how gorgeous he thinks she is. I loved that both he and Clover were in their thirties and didn’t mind scars or the messiness of life. In short, Erick and Clover were so fantastic together that I couldn’t stop smiling whenever they shared the page. Their burgeoning romance is by turns sweet, erotic, and charming, resulting in a completely addictive story.

I cannot express how much I loved Her Naughty Holiday. It’s bright, energetic, has snappy dialogue and memorable characters, and is seriously hot. Make sure you leave yourself enough time to read this in one sitting, because this is a story that grabs you from the first page and doesn’t let go. I cannot recommend Her Naughty Holiday enough – this is one holiday story I’ll be revisiting all year long.


FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Waiting on Wednesday: Wicked in His Arms by Stacy Reid

Tuesday, December 20, 2016


Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine which spotlights eagerly anticipated upcoming releases!

Stacy Reid's first Wedded by Scandal book, Accidentally Compromising the Duke, was one of my absolute favorite books this year. It was completely addictive, emotional, sensual...and basically even thinking about it makes me want to re-read Edmond and Adel’s story. That's why my Waiting on Wednesday pick this week is the second Wedded by Scandal book, Wicked in His Arms. Even if I hadn't already fallen in love with Ms. Reid's writing, Tobias and Olivia sound exactly like my kind of hero and heroine - I can't wait to see what scandals they cause!

Wicked in His Arms Cover Title: Wicked in His Arms
Series: Wedded by Scandal, Book 2
Author: Stacy Reid
Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Entangled: Scandalous
Release Date: January 23, 2017

Book Description (from Goodreads):

Tobias Walcott, the Earl of Blade, has learned it is best to exercise rigid control over his passions and emotions in all that he does. Uncaring that it makes him seem cool and aloof to most in the ton, he is content with his desire to only woo agreeable and demur females. Then unforeseen circumstances see him trapped in a closet at a house party with the last woman he would ever make his countess.

Lady Olivia Sherwood is everything he should not desire in a female—unconventional, too decisive, and utterly without decorum. But passion ignites between them and they are discovered. Honor demands they wed, and while Tobias finds himself unwillingly drawn to the bewitching beauty, he must do everything not to tempt the passion that burns in him for her, lest it leads to disastrous consequences.

Waiting on Wednesday: Accidentally on Purpose by Jill Shalvis

Tuesday, December 13, 2016


Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine which spotlights eagerly anticipated upcoming releases!

I absolutely love Jill Shalvis's work and I'm always first in line to snap up her newest book. Her stories are always warm, funny, and filled with characters I absolutely adore. My Waiting on Wednesday pick this week is Accidentally on Purpose, Ms. Shalvis's third Heartbreaker Bay book. Elle and Archer have intrigued me since book one, and I can't wait to read their story :)

Accidentally on Purpose Cover Title: Accidentally on Purpose
Series: Heartbreaker Bay, Book 3
Author: Jill Shalvis
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Avon
Release Date: January 24, 2017
Jill Shalvis Reading Order

Book Description (from Amazon):

There’s no such thing as a little in love...
Elle Wheaton’s priorities: friends, career, and kick-ass shoes. Then there’s the muscular wall of stubbornness that’s security expert Archer Hunt—who comes before everything else. No point in telling Mr. “Feels-Free Zone” that, though. Elle will just see other men until she gets over Archer...which should only take a lifetime...

There’s no such thing as a little in lust...
Archer’s wanted the best for Elle ever since he sacrificed his law-enforcement career to save her. Their chemistry could start the next San Francisco earthquake and he craves her 24/7, but Archer doesn’t want to be responsible for the damage. The alternative? Watch her go out with guys who aren’t him...

There is such a thing as...
As far as Archer’s concerned, nobody is good enough for Elle. But when he sets out to prove it by sabotaging her dates, she gets mad—and things get hot as hell. Now Archer has a new mission: prove to Elle that her perfect man has been here all along...

Review: Marry Me on Main Street by LuAnn McLane

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Marry Me on Main Street by LuAnn McLane
Series: Cricket Creek, Book 11
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Contemporary Romance Marry Me on Main Street Cover
ISBN: 9781101989821
Release Date: December 6, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

In her small shop on Main Street, Susan Quincy sells handmade gifts and repurposed items. But she can’t part with the beautiful rocking chair she bought at an estate sale when its maker turns out to be Danny Mayfield. Even years later, Susan still cringes over how her handsome, popular high school crush only asked her to prom out of pity—or so she thinks…

Danny doesn’t know why Susan has avoided him for years, especially after the electric kiss they shared the night of prom. So when he learns that she wants him to craft more rocking chairs to sell at her shop, Danny can’t resist the chance to work on his passion and charm shy, beautiful Susan again—and this time, make it last…

Marry Me on Main Street is a super cute romance that’s sure to get you in the holiday spirit. LuAnn McLane’s eleventh Cricket Creek novel is a fast-paced, cheerful addition to the series and it’s a book that’s perfect to curl up with when you’re in the mood for something uplifting.

Danny is one of my favorite Cricket Creek heroes. He’s so kind, generous, patient, and warm-hearted that you wish he were real so you could snap him up. Danny’s biggest flaw is that he’s almost too giving, sacrificing his dream of woodworking in order to run his parents’ business and help his siblings run their own. Lately it’s been starting to wear on him and he feels like he doesn’t have his life together. For me, Danny’s internal struggle – whether to stay the course and not rock the boat or to go for his dreams – was the highlight of the book. It was relatable, interesting, and had me invested in the story from beginning to end. As for Susan, she’s a likeable heroine who is a little shy, somewhat insecure, and a bit slapstick klutzy. Susan didn’t grab my attention the way some other Cricket Creek heroines have, which was a pity because when I like a hero as much as I liked Danny, I want to be equally intrigued by their heroine. That’s not to say the romance was bad – far from it. After the first third of the book, Danny and Susan have a fast-paced, sweet romance. The only drama that comes in is manufactured by Susan, and it did make me want to shake her a couple of times. Given that Danny is the kind of hero who wears his feelings openly, Susan’s fears and avoidance tactics didn’t feel organic. Still, while I had a couple of issues, their romance is charming and lively for the most part, and by the end of the book the two of them had me grinning.

As with all of the Cricket Creek stories I’ve read, there’s a secondary romance, this one involving Susan’s friend and employee, Betsy, and the handsome former-lawyer-turned-deli-owner, John. Betsy and John’s romance was lovely and understated, but sometimes felt a bit too similar to the main love story. Both of them had interesting potential backstories that – had they been better fleshed out – would have made them shine and stand apart from the younger couple.

Marry Me on Main Street is a story of facing your fears and taking a chance on love. And what better, safer place can there be to do so than in Cricket Creek? The idyllic small Kentucky town is a character in and of itself in this series and it’s always a delight. If the town and its residents sometimes come off as too good to be true, then that’s okay. Once in a while it’s nice to take a break from the real world and enjoy something sweet, and Marry Me on Main Street fits the bill perfectly.


FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Waiting on Wednesday: Rock Chick Reawakening by Kristen Ashley

Tuesday, December 6, 2016


Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine which spotlights eagerly anticipated upcoming releases!

I absolutely LOVE Kristen Ashley's Rock Chick series. The Rock Chicks and the Hot Bunch are funny as hell, sexy, and chock-full of attitude. I've been drawing the books out like nobody's business because I honestly can't bear to reach the end (my fingers are still crossed - hard - for a spinoff series). That's why my Waiting on Wednesday pick this week is Rock Chick Reawakening. This is a serious treat for Rock Chick fans. The blurb may not say much, but it doesn't need to. Daisy has been a strong, bubbly, vivacious, loving presence throughout almost the entire Rock Chick series and I am so excited to read her story.

Rock Chick Reawakening Cover Title: Rock Chick Reawakening
Series: Rock Chick, Book 0.5
Author: Kristen Ashley
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Evil Eye Concepts
Release Date: January 3, 2017

Book Description (from Amazon):

From New York Times bestselling author, Kristen Ashley, comes the long-awaited story of Daisy and Marcus, Rock Chick Reawakening. A prequel to Kristen’s Rock Chick series, Rock Chick Reawakening shares the tale of the devastating event that nearly broke Daisy, an event that set Marcus Sloan—one of Denver’s most respected businessmen and one of the Denver underground’s most feared crime bosses—into finally making his move to win the heart of the woman who stole his.

Review: Wound Tight by Tessa Bailey

Monday, December 5, 2016

Wound Tight by Tessa Bailey
Series: Made in Jersey, Book 4
Publisher: Entangled: Brazen
Genre: Male/Male Erotic Contemporary Romance Wound Tight Cover
ISBN: 9781633757646
Release Date: December 5, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

When CEO Renner Bastion walks into a room, everyone keeps their distance. Well, everyone but the sarcastic, tattooed, Boston-bred security guard whose presence has kept Renner in New Jersey longer than intended. As if the unwanted attraction isn’t unsettling enough, Renner finds out his protector isn’t as unavailable as originally thought.

Milo Bautista just came out to his wealthy, ultra-confident boss, a man he secretly respects and admires…in more ways than he’ll admit. Worldly, experienced Renner would never look in his direction, let alone share some of that confidence he wears like a cloak, so Milo has set his sights on someone else to be his first.

Until Renner offers him private lessons in seduction…

Wound Tight is fantastic! I’ve been eagerly anticipating Renner and Milo’s story and Tessa Bailey knocked my socks off with this hot-as-hell, completely addictive romance. The chemistry is sizzling, the dialogue is snappy, and I loved Renner and Milo so much that I wanted to re-read their book as soon as I finished it.

I have a soft spot for tightly-wound heroes with mile-high walls, and Renner fits the bill perfectly. He’s a workaholic who is dangerously close to working himself to death, a proud man who guards his heart and pushes people away before he can get hurt, and showing affection isn’t something that comes easily to him. Beneath all that he’s a man with a good heart who cares for people far more than he’ll ever let on. Renner broke my heart and made me melt more than once in Wound Tight. He isn’t easy to love, but damn if I didn’t love him.

It takes a hero with strength, determination, and optimism to get to the heart of Renner, and Milo is exactly that hero. Milo is coming to terms with his sexuality and he starts watching Renner closely as a way of trying to mimic his confidence. But the longer he’s around Renner, the more Milo finds himself attracted to the man. It’s impossible not to adore Milo. He’s giving, charming, caring, and takes no s**t from Renner. When he sees that Renner isn’t taking care of himself, he steps in and doesn’t back down at his boss’s growls. And when he comes out to Renner and asks him to help him become more confident in owning his sexuality, the two form an unlikely friendship…one that simmers with sexual tension.

The pull of desire between Renner and Milo is undeniably hot and every erotic encounter is hot enough to burn the page. That being said, it’s the emotional journeys Renner and Milo make that give Wound Tight its heart. The romance is the perfect blend of desire and genuine emotion and I loved watching these two fall in love and come into their own. It isn’t easy for Milo and Renner to get their happily ever after. Doubt, fear, and past wounds cause them both to make mistakes and inadvertently hurt each other. But Ms. Bailey makes every bump in the road worth it, as Milo and Renner simply shine on the page.

Wound Tight is the fourth Made in Jersey book, but it can easily be read as a standalone. Fans of the series will surely be charmed by the supporting roles some former Made in Jersey characters play, and the town of Hook itself helps bring the story to life. I finished Wound Tight wanting to go back and read the Made in Jersey stories that I missed…if I can let go of this book long enough to do so. Ms. Bailey definitely knocked it out of the park with her male/male romance debut. I loved everything about Wound Tight and can’t wait to revisit Renner and Milo again soon!


FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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