Five Books Everyone Should Read: Tracy’s Picks

Posted February 8, 2015 by Tracy in Features | 2 Comments

Five Books Everyone Should Read is a new feature we’re running in 2015. We’ve asked some of our favorite authors, readers and bloggers to share five books that touched them or have stayed with them throughout the years.

5 Books Project

fuglyFugly by KZ Snow

What happens to a young man’s self-image, and his sex life, when he wakes up one morning to see his good looks significantly altered for the worse? In this modern fable, three gay friends find out the answer when they hit on the wrong guy in a club one night.

Fugly by KZ Snow is a novella that I think every person should read whether they read m/m romance or not.  It’s so wonderful I can’t tell you how much I loved it. The story involves characters Adin Swift and Jackson Spey but they were in it just a bit (she has a series about these two wonderful men). It tells the story of 4 gay friends – 3 of whom are always on the hunt for the most beautiful men to sleep with. They’re condescending to those they don’t feel are pretty enough or up to par and never ever look beneath the surface – in their prey or in themselves. Jackson decides to show them that there’s more to people than their looks and puts a spell on them (he’s a wizard) so that they have facial lesions – only not everyone can see them. They can see them when they look in a mirror and the people they are attracted to can see the lesions but now the 3 men are the ones getting spurned for not being the perfect specimens of manhood. Watching the three men come to terms with who and what they really were inside and finally seeing other people for who they are on the inside and not what they look like was incredible. I laughed, I cried. Just. So. Good!

what I did for a dukeWhat I Did for a Duke by Julie Anne Long

Moncrieffe knows the perfect revenge: he’ll seduce Ian’s innocent sister, Genevieve—the only Eversea as yet untouched by scandal. First he’ll capture her heart . . . and then he’ll break it.

Holly talked me into buying What I Did for a Duke by Julie Anne Long. I’d heard good things about the book and had planned on reading it but maybe not too soon. When I really read the blurb I discovered that it was a revenge story and I hesitated. I’ve discovered that I really don’t like revenge plots all that much any more so what to do? In pipes Holly who says, “DO IT!” I caved and read it and it was SO good! I loved it. It’s definitely one of my favorite reads ever. I loved the duke – his character was entertaining as well as so heart wrenching. I loved Genevieve even though she was a bit wishy-washy at times. I adored how Long (this was my first read by her) didn’t pull any punches with the fact that the duke is almost 40 and in fact even had Genevieve make mention of the lines on his face and some other age related quips. An unconventional romance but a wonderful one. Just a great book.

the iron dukeThe Iron Duke by Meljean Brook

When a dead body is dropped from an airship onto his doorstep, bringing Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth into his dangerous world, he intends to make her his next possession.

The book centers around a world where England is recovering from the invasion of the Horde.  Mina is an inspector in the police department and she investigates a murder that somehow involves the man they call the Iron Duke.  The Iron Duke was the one who freed the citizens from the Horde’s hold.  The Duke wants Mina but she’s more than resistant for a while – he also gets involved in the murder investigation as the body was found on his doorstep after it had been dropped from the sky.  This book is set in a steampunk world and the one that Brook created was amazing.  She blows my mind at times with how her brain works.  She did a fabulous job of blending the action with the romance and be so detailed about it all.

black jewels trilogyThe Black Jewels Trilogy: Daughter of the Blood, Heir to the Shadows, Queen of the Darkness (The Black Jewels, #1-3)(omnibus edition)

Anne Bishop’s critically-acclaimed Black Jewels Trilogy is the saga of a young but still-innocent Queen more powerful than even the High Lord of Hell—and the three sworn enemies determined to win her and gain a prize that could be terrible beyond imagining…

My friend Amy had to email me a bajillion times for me to finally perk up and buy the Black Jewel Trilogy by Anne Bishop, which is dark fantasy (not my favorite AT ALL).  Then I thought I’d be smart and buy the omnibus edition.  More fool me.  Seriously.  That thing was so effin big it was completely intimidating and it sat on my shelf for about 6 months before I picked it up and dug in.  Of course then I couldn’t put the damned thing down because I was completely and utterly hooked once I started.  The books are set in an amazing world and as I read I wanted to know more about the world and the characters in it.  They were fascinating to me and I loved every minute I spent reading.

last days of summerLast Days of Summer by Steve Kluger

In Brooklyn, 1940, a wisecracking, baseball loving twelve–year–old boy, Joey Margolis, is in desperate need of a hero. Constant abuse from other boys in the neighbourhood prompts Joey to send letters to Charlie Banks, an up–and–coming star with the New York Giants, asking for a home run so he can tell everyone that it was for him.

This was an incredible book. I loved the almost hostile hero worship that Joey showed toward Charlie Banks when he first started writing to him. The friendship, love, companionship and understanding between a kid and a twenty something was seriously one of the best relationships ever. I highly recommend this book to everyone! I do have to warn you that you can expect to laugh out loud many times as well as cry since it’s a VERY emotional read. One of my favorite books ever.

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2 responses to “Five Books Everyone Should Read: Tracy’s Picks

  1. Ooh, great books Tracy! I already have plans to read one of these books soon and I can’t wait to see what I think of The Iron Duke.

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