Samantha’s Top Picks for 2011

The reviewers at Fiction Vixen will be posting their favorite reads from 2011 this week. Our picks are not necessarily books published in 2011, but rather books we read in 2011.

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Samantha’s Top Picks for 2011

I have to admit it was a rough reading year for me. I didn’t do too much reading outside of books for FVBR – lack of time coupled with not finding series that didn’t leave me frothing for the next book, I was worried I wouldn’t even have a Top 5 of 2011. But I’ve managed to find some that I just can’t stop thinking about. Some that I pick up from time to time to re-read or do a Kindle search for my favorite parts. Here are my favorite reads in 2011:


Divide and Conquer (Cut and Run #4) Abigail Roux and Madeliene Urban:

Ty Grady and Zane Garrett continue in the Cut and Run series, my favorite M/M series. This one left me breathless one minute, crying the next minute, and wrecked me for days….all in a good way. All in a way only Ty and Zane can. Wrecked I say! And the ending, ZOMG the ending…..the preview for book 5…. gasping once again. Ty Grady, written by Abigail Roux is officially my 2nd favorite book character (behind Vishous) and incredibly well written with the most complex personality – you never know what you’re going to get from him. But all I do is manage to fall more in love with him.

 Favorite Quote:

“Getting texts at work again, partner?” Zane drawled as he looked over to see Ty.

“Well, you know my type,” Ty responded with a saccharine smile as he passed Zane’s desk. “No self-control and loads of mental issues.” He did sound exasperated, though.

“That’s never seemed to bother you,” Zane answered as he stood up and lifted his suit jacket off the back of his chair.


A Lot Like Love by Julie James (FBI, #2):

Finally getting caught up with this series and these books feel like a special treat. Smart, great dialogue, sexy, and fast paced. I couldn’t put this book down and sped right through it. Can’t wait for the next one.


Envy by J.R. Ward (Fallen Angels #3): (Review)

Ward is finally hitting her groove with this 3rd book in her Fallen Angels series. Finally a sexy hero I could get on board with, but most of all a giant WTF moment that left me speechless and thinking how will I ever make it a year to the next book? And Ward continues to give us a deliciously devious evil female devil that I can’t get enough page time with.


Shades of Gray by Brooke McKinley:

Published in 2009, but I just found it online a few months ago. I haven’t found anything else from this author – where is she?!? Two men who shouldn’t be together can no longer resist the temptation. As Danny Miller’s tough gritty exterior slowly melts away at the same time Miller Sutton slowly comes to terms with a new reality, I found this book and the characters irresistible. And the love scenes in this book while not extremely graphic were some of my favorite read this year.

Favorite quote:

Miller looked down and knew that if he lived to be a hundred years old, this—Danny’s eyes raised to his, Danny’s mouth covering him, his lips wet and shiny, Danny’s naked chest cradled between his legs—would always be the most erotic moment of his life.


Never Enough by Lauren Dane (Brown Siblings #4): (Review)

Nobody writes a sexy dirty talking hero better than Lauren Dane in my opinion. This is one of my favorite series and I have adored rock star Adrian Brown through the all the books. But wow – I had no idea Adrian Brown was going to turn out to be such a dirty talking sensuous lover. Oh. My. I won’t embarras myself here at FVBR by stating how many times I’ve searched Never Enough on my Kindle for dirty words to re-read certain scenes. 😉 So hot! And once again Lauren Dane gives us a solid story of “family” as well.


By the Book by Scarlett Parrish: (Review)

“I’m Daniel Fucking Cross” – there you go, the only reason you need to read this gem.


Shadowfever by Karen Marie Moning (Fever #5): (Review)

Oh Jericho Barrons….how will I go on without you? Moning treated us to one hell of a grand finale. Having not picked up the Fever series until one month before the release of Shadowfever, I got to zoom through all five books in a row and had no waiting period in between. I can only imagine the torture long time fans of this series had waiting in between the release of books.


Willing Victim by Cara McKenna: (Review)

Another book that came out a few years ago that I just got around to reading and I’m so happy I did. So much intensity is packed into this novella. I still can’t believe it’s just 108 pages long. I also still can’t believe Cara McKenna is also Meg Maguire! I loved The Reluctant Nude! When I found out the same author that had written The Reluctant Nude also wrote Willing Victim, I was floored. But most of all, I absolutely fell head over heels for Flynn (Michael) in this book. I love that he calls her sub-shop girl. I love that you know he can be trusted. I love how completely direct he is. He’s an anti-romantic hero in a super sexy erotic romance. Cara McKenna makes it all work somehow!

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  1. says

    Great list Samantha! The only one I didn’t read was the Dane, but otherwise these all deserve a best nod!

    And Ty and Zane. Damn it. I thank you for getting me into this series. I hope you are ready to hear me whine for the next nine months! 😉

  2. says

    I am SO with you on Envy!! That book was so freaking awesome. and OMG I have not read Never Enough yet aaaahhh!! *goes to use B&N gift card to buy it* By the Book is one I’ve been so curious about, need to try it sooner than later 😉 Thanks for sharing!

  3. says

    I really need to start the Fever series. I have had the first book on my Nook for well over a year and I need to commit to it!

    Thanks for all of the great suggestions!

  4. says

    I have got to start Ty & Zane’s stories. Cut & Run is sitting patiently on my Kindle.

    I loved Willing Victim “sub-shop girl” by Cara as well but Curio topped my list of her books this year.

    I need to catch up with Envy and Ward’s fallen angels if you say it’s good. The first book did not pull me in but I won’t give up.

    Loved A Lot Like Love! Julie James is a contemporary autobuy for me with her sexy FBI agents. (Jack Pallas owns me!)

    Enjoyed the final Brown Siblings installment as well. You are right, Adrian is has a dirty mouth in the best way!

    Great picks Samantha! I have read many and have several on my TBR!

  5. says

    I’m glad I could be of service getting some of you hooked on Ty and Zane. Ty of course would not approve of your addictive behavior but to hell with him. Book 5 will be out in May!

  6. says

    The only one on your list I’ve read is A Lot Like Love, but I agree that it was a fun book. I wish you had a better reading year. It’s hard when you struggle to fill a Top 5 list. Hopefully 2012 will be better for you!