Vickie’s Top 10 UF/PNR Series
The first four of the series are my all time favourite series ever. These are my years-in-advance auto buys and there is no way on the planet I am missing the next installment. I love them all for different reasons, and as such there is no way that I can choose between them. Although it may look like I like the Lords and the Immortals more than the other two, thats not the case, its just there are some books you can waffle on about forever and others are just….*sighs*….that good, there just aren’t any words. As fellow reviewer, Gemma, once said to me, some books just have a profound effect on you, and these are those for me.
So, in no particular order:
1. J R Ward’s Black Dagger Brotherhood… ooohh… Hunky men out there kicking Lesser butt and having fun whilst doing it! Ms Ward has created a totally new outlook on vampires and to be honest I totally forget that they are actually vampires, so I wouldn’t get into the series just on the premise that it has vamps in it. There are probably 3 books within the series that have been huge books for me. Lover Awakened (Zsadist and Bella), Lover Unbound (Vishous and Doc Jane) and Lover Reborn (Tohrment and No-One). All three of these books have you on an emotional roller coaster, wringing you out, leaving your heart pounding for one reason or another. Hand on heart I can say that no other author has had me bawling like a baby with grief, frustration, or joy like J.R.Ward. I cannot recommend these highly enough.
2. Gena Showlater and the Lords of the Underworld… ahhh and then there are the Lords. Yet another bunch of hunky kick ass men and their ladies. I love this series so much. Although not as far along yet as the Black Dagger boys, the storyline gets stronger with each installment. The Lords were originally immortal warriors, created not born. Their ego’s got the better of them when Pandoras box was given to a mere female to protect, so they stole it, and idiot males that they were, opened it. Each of the warriors received a demon, Violence, Pain, Death, Disease, Disaster, Misery, Doubt, Promiscuity, Defeat, Lies, Secrets, and Wrath and were subsequently taken over by said demon for centuries. After fighting them to the back of their consciousness the Lords are now on a mission to find the missing Pandora’s box. I have four favorite favorites within this series although it has to be said, it’s very hard to choose between them, as I really do love them all.
My first fave is The Darkest Night, which is Maddox and Ashlyn’s story. Maddox is the keeper of Violence and has to die every night, (not going to tell you why…read the book!) and Ashlyn has her own issues which are what bring her to the boys (again, not going to tell you…read the book!).
The Darkest Kiss, which is Lucien and Anya’s story….soooo funny… Anya is a minor anarchy goddess (not according to her and don’t let her hear you calling her minor) and she runs absolute rings around Lucien, The keeper of Death. She even goes so far as to call him Flowers… I mean… The Grim Reaper…Flowers!? Really??
Next is Sabin and Gwen in The Darkest Whisper. Sabin is the Keeper of Doubt and his demon is soooo funny… oh, did I forget to mention that we can hear the demons?? Honestly.. this is one of the funniest parts of the series… damn, those demons are hilarious. Gwen is also an immortal (a Harpy none the less), imprisoned for …you guessed it…read the book!
And then there is The Darkest Lie, which is Gideon and Scarlett. Gideon is the keeper of Lies, (imagine being with a lover who cannot say he loves you unless he hates you) and Scarlett is the Keeper of Nightmares..and apparently they were married!! Not that Gideon remembers this!
I am not one of these readers that will slate an author because their research is off, or there is this little bit wrong or whatever. I love reading these books, I don’t have to concentrate and have a headache at the end of them, nor do I need a dictionary. The sex scenes aren’t hot and steamy but I love the stories and the banter between the demons and their keepers. Love love love them.
3. Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark Hunter series. Another great series although I have fallen a little out of love with these since all of the original main male characters found their matches, but I am still reading as I want to see how it all turns out in the end.. there are still some loose ends from the beginning of the series knocking about and I am interested to see where it goes. I have a couple of favorites, Dance with the Devil (Zarek and Astrid) and for those of you that have read the series, I am sure it will be no surprise to read that my other fave was Acheron. How could you not love this book. This is another book to have me in tears (although not as much as Lover Reborn) with its angst, pain and sorrow. My all time fave character within the series has to be Simi. Heffer Goddess anyone with a side of BBQ sauce?? I’m not bonkers..read the books… it will all become clear.
4. Kresley Cole and Immortals After Dark. I know some of the other reviewers are not struck with Kresley Cole, but she is an author I would pick up over most others. Her characters have me in kinks and if I am on a bit of a downer I love nothing more than to read a quote or from Regin or Nucking Futs Nix (you just know I am going to have to include some in this post!) Some of my favourites within the series have been, Dreams of a Dark Warrior: Declan and Regins story. Declan has been chasing Regin for centuries, continually being reincarnated as soon as he remembers who is, and why he is chasing Regin.
“He’s like six hundred years younger than you are. I refuse to be the moral compass of our cell! Most weekends I have an intoxispell bong attached to my mouth like a respirator. I love scatological humor, and I list ‘pranks involving nuclear waste’ and ‘making demons eat things’ as my hobbies.” (Regin talking to cellmate whilst locked up).
“Straightaway, she’d called to the guard, “Oh, boys?” She’d sauntered to the glass in only her black lace bra and panties. “I need some assistance,” When they slowed, agog, she’d purred, “Can one of you help me find my orgasm?”
Wicked Deeds on a Winters Night is another of my faves, and is about Bowen McReive and Mariketa the Awaited, and their journey through the steamy jungle back to civilization. Last but not least is No Rest For the Wicked, which is Kaderin and Sebastian’s story, and revolves around The Hie, a competition for immortals, where the winner gets a fantastic prize. This time around, the prize is a key which will give the winner the opportunity to go back in time twice. This series is a definite must for me!!
Now we move on to the remaining 6 series that I have really enjoyed, and would quickly recommend to anyone and everyone that will listen.
5. Nalini SIngh’s Psy-Changeling series. I found the idea of a race of people that are so reliant on their brains fascinating. They are very Vulcan in the way that emotions are unwanted, and are now in fact considered a major flaw in someones psyche, so much so that they will wipe a person out leaving them a walking shell, capable of only the most basic of tasks. Throw them together with the very tactile, and emotionally explosive Changelings and you have a recipe for trouble… but of the very readable kind. My favorite of the series is Kiss of Snow which is Hawke and Sienna’s story. We have been waiting a little while for this one, which is only fair as she had to grow up a bit, and into her powers a lot, but it was most definitely worth the wait.
6. Larrissa Ione’s Demonica Series is one I only found quite recently and I really enjoyed them! Most of the books I have read in the genre have tended to be around vampires and weres, so it was really nice to come across Incubi. They made for a refreshing change.
Of course, I love the bad lad Wraith, because naturally he is so bad he is fricking awesome, but the other brothers are pretty ok too, and the ladies of the series aren’t half bad either. It is a bit of a strange series but it really works well, and puts a whole new twist on the demon = bad thing. These are really worth a look if you haven’t had the chance already.
7. Christine Feehan’s Dark series. This is the first real paranormal series that I read. I really enjoyed the idea of a different sort of vampire, and the whole soul mate thing. Lately some of Ms Feehan’s Dark series books are getting a bit too dark in how they portray the whole dominating man/submissive woman thing (nothing wrong with being a manly man but flinging women across a room is not exactly romance) but I am still desperate to see what happens with Skyler and Dimitri. Within the series I have a couple of favorites, one is Gregori and Savannah’s story, Dark Magic. It’s so good to see Gregori getting a taste of his own medicine for a change!
The other is Dark Slayer, which is about Ivory and Razvan. I really enjoyed the fact that the main character was a female this time, rather than male, and the back story to this book was great. There were quite a few twists and turns which kept you interested and the chemistry between the main couple was wonderful. You just have to remember that Ms Feehan is a very descriptive author and sometimes it can be a little hard to go back to after reading some of the other more fast paced writers.
Last but not least in this section is 8. Christine Feehan’s Ghostwalker Series…This is another series from a while back, but at least with this one I am waiting on the latest in the series…I think (must check my calendar!) Again, another bunch of men, out doing their thing, saving people if not the world, with plenty of ass kicking and hot and steamy scenes with their leading ladies.
It’s a little different as it’s not Were’s, Witches, Vampires or such like, just plain ole mad scientists experimenting on soldiers who have volunteered to be guinea pigs, turning them into genetic anomolies with abilities such as telepathy, and telekenisis. I read these after starting the Dark series as I had enjoyed Christine Feehans writing so much, and I can say that I wasn’t disappointed in the least.
In the Urban Fantasy section I struggle a lot…things I thought might be UF have turned out to be PNR so that’s why I have a jumbled up selection!
First out of the gate in this genre has to be 9. Kelley Armstrong’s Women of the Otherworld series. Although I really struggled with the first chapter in Bitten (and I do mean REALLY) which is the first in the series. I forced myself to continue as the book had been heartily recommended by a friend of mine. I am so glad I persevered with it. I love the characters in the book and the series goes from strength to strength. Elena is such a strong feisty lady, and Clay is sex on a stick so far as I am concerned… I keep picturing Alcide from the TV series TrueBlood when I think of him..hmmm…Alcide!
Another of my favorites in the series is No Humans Involved, which is about Jaime Vegas, celebrity Medium. She is asked to come and work with two more mediums, to try and contact Marilyn Monroe for a TV show. As is the norm for Jaime, she stays very low key, allowing the other two mediums all the lime light. Unfortunately for Jaime, things don’t go exactly to plan and very soon, she becomes the centre of attention.
And then there is Dime Store Magic, which is Paige’s Story. Paige is a 23 year old witch, who is shunned by the witches coven. Her mother (deceased) was a strong witch, albeit a black one, whose powers far surpassed Paige’s, and she has lived in the shadow of her mothers memory for quite a while. She has now taken over the Coven much to the other members annoyance and has found herself a young witch to take in, who just so happens to be being hunted by one of the darkest Cabals in the Underworld. This really is a brilliant series, but I am a little behind now a days… I really must make the effort to catch up on these!
And finally for me comes 10. Keri Arthur’s Riley Jenson Guardian series. It’s a long time since I read these, and so a lot has passed through my very jumbled brain in the mean time, but I can still say hand on heart that I really enjoyed these books. No, the writing isn’t always the best, and the world is sometimes a bit squiffy, but then, as I said, I enjoy a book that doesn’t have me feeling as though I should take notes in order to remember all the pertinent details.
I quite enjoyed the fact that Riley would get all hot and steamy when the moon craze hits her and any morals she might have had seem to fly out of the window, but so what. Its Keri Arthurs world, and hey ho, it works for me. I enjoy the dynamic she has with the men in her life, and the dilemas said men cause her. I was thrilled with the outcome of the series, which had a good few twists and turns.