Guest Reviewers’ Top Picks for 2011

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Since almost the beginning, many of the books on Reviews by Jessewave have been and are critiqued by the Guest Reviewers, whose numbers have grown over time and without whose contributions to this site would make impossible for us to run (or be as fun!). In 2011 we gained four talented new faces to the team — some have only been with us for a little while — adding to the veterans who have remained. Wave once again asked us to come up with lists of top books we’ve reviewed in the last year and you’ll notice that they range from just a few to a fair many (depending on length of time with the site and amount of time they could devote to reviewing). Maybe you’ll find a new favorite among the following collection.

In alphabetical order, here are the books rated by Buda, Cole, Cryselle, Damon Suede, Feliz, Jenre, Lady M, Lasha, Leslie, myself (Aunt Lynn), Maddy Caine, Raine, Sirius, Tj, Val and Victor Banis as the best of 2011:

Buda’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Nothing Ever Happens by Sue Brown
  2. Putting Out Fires by Marie Sexton
  3. Paris A to Z by Marie Sexton
  4. Out of the Woods by Syd McGinley
  5. Foxe Hunt by Haley Walsh
  6. Starting Over by Ethan Stone
  7. Another Enchanted April by Eric Arvin
  8. Flesh and Blood by Ethan Stone
  9. No Apologies by Tibby Armstrong
  10. Foxe Tail by Haley Walsh
  11. The Truth of Yesterday by Josh Aterovis
  12. Blood and Tears by Ethan Stone
  13. AJ’s Angel by LA Witt

Cole’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Aisling Book One: Guardian by Carole Cummings
  2. Aisling Book Two: Dream by Carole Cummings
  3. Soft Focus by Jaye Valentine & Reno MacLeod
  4. Catalyst by K PIet & SL Armstrong
  5. Woke Up in a Strange Place by Eric Arvin
  6. Two Spirits: A Story of Life With the Navajo by Walter L Williams & Toby Johnson
  7. Out of Position (Out of Position #1) by Kyell Gold
  8. Isolation Play (Out of Position #2) by Kyell Gold
  9. The Red Thread of Forever Love by Nicole Kimberling
  10. American Love Songs by Ashlyn Kane

Cryselle’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Junction X by Erastes
  2. Winter Warmersanthology
  3. Amor Prohibido by Ellis Carrington
  4. The Santa Problem by Tam Ames

Damon’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Outcast Mine by Jamie Craig
  2. Come Unto These Yellow Sands by Josh Lanyon
  3. Dance with Me by Heidi Cullinan

Feliz’s Top Books for 2011


  1. Apples And Regret And Wasted Time by Cornelia Gray
  2. Lone Star by Josh Lanyon
  3. Simple Treasures by Alan Chin
  4. Khyber Run by Amber Green
  5. Well Traveled by Margaret Mills & Tedy Ward
  6. Coming Out in Coopers Crossing by Jayne DeMarco
  7. Perfect Score by Susan Roebuck
  8. Sins of the Heart by Allison Cassetta
  9. Spin Out by James Buchanan
  10. Last Line by Harper Fox

Jenre’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Anchored: Belonging book 1 by Rachel Haimowitz
  2. Muffled Drum by Erastes
  3. One Real Thing by Anah Crow and Dianne Fox
  4. Hell’s Pawn by Jay Bell
  5. Goldilocks and His Three Bears by A.M. Riley
  6. Reverb by Jet Mykles
  7. The Usual Apocalypse by Christine Price
  8. Home Fires Burning by Charlie Cochrane

John’s Top Book for 2011

  1. Dream Come True by D.C. Juris

Lady M’s Top Books for 2011

  1. The Definitive Albert J. Sterne by Julie Bozza
  2. Tuareg by Sarah Black
  3. Breaking Cover (Life Lessons 2) by Kaje Harper
  4. To Adam with Love by Adrienne Wilder
  5. Feet of Clay by Amanda Steiger
  6. Reclamation (Dominion 2) by Lissa Kassey

Lasha’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Emerald: Rewriting History #1 by EM Lynley
  2. Bayou Dreams (Rougaroux Social Club #1) by Lynn Lorenz
  3. Ex Equals by L.A. Witt

Leslie’s Top Books for 2011

  1. The Cranberry Hush by Ben Monopoli
  2. The Painting by F.K. Wallace
  3. Bob the Book by David Pratt
  4. What they Always Tell Us by Martin Wilson
  5. I Am Not Myself These Days by Josh Kilmer-Purcell
  6. I’ll Get There. It Better Be Worth The Trip by John Donovan
  7. Knight Errant by K.D. Sarge
  8. It Gets Better: Coming Out, Overcoming Bullying and Creating a Life Worth Living by Dan Savage and Terry Miller
  9. Enlightened (Little Boy Lost Series, Book One) by J.P. Barnaby

Leslie S’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Wight Mischief by J.L. Merrow
  2. Placing Out by P.A. Brown
  3. Dirty Kiss by Rhys Ford
  4. City Falcon by Feliz Faber
  5. Deconstruction by Kit Zheng

Aunt Lynn’s Top Books for 2011

  1. By Honor Betrayed by Alex Beecroft
  2. Red White Black and Blue (Book 12 of the Donald Strachey Mystery series) by Richard Stevenson
  3. Mummy Dearest by Josh Lanyon
  4. Where the Allegheny Meets the Monongahela by Felicia Watson
  5. According to Hoyle by Abigail Roux
  6. All Lessons Learned (Final book in the Lessons series) by Charlie Cochrane
  7. Dead of Night by Victor J Banis

Maddy’s Top Books for 2011

  1. Enter Oblivion by C.M. Harris
  2. Will Grayson, Will Grayson by David Levithan & John Green

Raine’s Top Books for 2011

  1. A Thread of Deepest Black by Finn Marlowe
  2. Angel and the Assassin – Be Brave by Fyn Alexander
  3. Bear Like Me by Jonathan Cohen
  4. Blind Items by Kate McMurray
  5. Yakuza Pride by H. J. Brues
  6. Clear Water by Amy Lane
  7. Coyote’s Creed by Vaughn R. Demont
  8. Equilibrium by Katey Hawthorne
  9. Riot Boy by Katey Hawthorne
  10. Unacceptable Risk by Kaje Harper

Sirius’ Top Books for 2011

  1. The Dance of Love and Jealousy by Roland Graeme
  2. The Only Gold by Tamara Allen
  3. If It Ain’t Love by Tamara Allen
  4. Marathon Cowboys by Sarah Black
  5. Ghost Station by Adam Fitzroy
  6. Ravages by R.A. Padmos
  7. Song of Oestend by Marie Sexton
  8. Raven and the Wolf by Marie Evers
  9. Flying High in the Night Air by John Houser
  10. Kindred Hearts by Rowan Speedwell
  11. The Retrieval by Lucius Parhelion
  12. Wingmen by Ensan Case

Tj’s Top Books for 2011

  1. The Salisbury Key by Harper Fox
  2. For Love of War by Kiernan Kelly

Val’s Top Books for 2011

  1. The Untold Want by Catt Ford
  2. Hell Is In The Details by Angela Benedetti
  3. Faster Than The Speed Of Light by Lucius Parhelion
  4. Neskaya by Augusta Li

Victor J Banis’ Top Books for 2011

  1. Caregiver by Rick R. Reed: Rick Reed definitely stretched himself with this one. A dark read, but meaningful. I gave it 5 stars on Amazon because Amazon does not allow half stars, and this was way too good to rate at only 4. Even here it probably should have been 4.75
  2. Traveling Light by Lloyd Meeker: One of those books you want to read again and again — definitely entertaining, but far more than entertainment too. Chicken soup for the soul, I’d say. And the author, writing about shamans, is a shaman himself.
  3. The Shakespeare Conspiracy by Ted Bacino: Definitely exercise for the brain, a thought provoking look at Shakespeare’s works. Was I convined of the author’s premise? Not altogether, but it was a fun read nonetheless, and it did make me wonder.
  4. Tricks by Rick R. Reed: The author is cruising here. This is almost an exemplar of Reed’s works, what makes them work and why he has so many devoted readers.
  5. P’tit Cadeau by Anel Viz: In retrospect I wish I’d rated this higher — it’s a very singular work from a relatively new voice in our genre, and one who has quickly established himself as one of the best, in my opinion. Everything I’ve read from this author has been entirely unique, and well worth savoring. One of the few I’d snatch up without a second’s hesitation, knowing I was going to get a fine read, and something different from everything else.

31 thoughts on “Guest Reviewers’ Top Picks for 2011

  1. Wave

    Great job guys. What an excellent compilation of terrific books. Thanks Aunt Lynn for doing this again, especially with me almost derailing the project. :grin:

    1. Aunt Lynn Post author

      You are welcome Wave, even after throwing some wrenches in at the last minute. :) It’s a great list and I know I will be combing through for some new reading.

  2. sammy2006

    Thank you all so much Reviewers—yo are INVALUABLE to readers like me–I can always count on your reviews to enlighten and alert me to the gems that have been published throughout the year. Thank you so much for giving up your time to share your thoughtful review with us!

  3. Sirius

    Thank you Lynn for doing this. You are the Queen of the projects ;). It was hard to choose because I definitely could put another ten favorites there hehe, thank goodness some of them were done by other reviewers, so I did not feel too bad for not including those books lol.
    Oh Wingmen by Ensan Case. When I reviewed this book, the paperback was out of print and sellers were charging crazy prices. Few weeks ago I have read on Erastes’ site that on February 2012 Cheyenne Publishing will be reissuing it as ebook. Yay. Just wanted to share this info for anybody who could be interested, because as far as I am concerned this book is amazing and deserves a lot of love :)

    1. Aunt Lynn Post author

      Ah yes, Queen of Projects is me. :)

      Thanks for the info on Wingmen. I’m sure it will get a lot of attention after its new re-release.

  4. Aquina

    Great list. Perfect way to spend my amazon gift cards with all the good books I missed getting this year.

    By the way, I don’t think All Lessons Learned is the final book in the series. Charlie even says in the comments she is working on book 9.

    1. Aunt Lynn Post author

      Thanks Aquina. My understanding that yes, Jonty and Orlando will be back, but the series may be named differently (?) because of the timing after WWI. We’ll see and I eagerly await what Charlie has next for us with these two.

  5. tripoli

    Oo, lots of my favs on those lists too! I also loved Thread of Deepest Black and I know Finn Marlowe has a new one coming out this month at Samhain. Can’t wait to see what all these amazing authors have planned for next year.

    1. Aunt Lynn Post author

      Hmmmmm…I am looking for it. Can you email it to me directly and I will add them? Didn’t mean toleave you off!

  6. Mary G

    I seriously hate you all! I have a new Kindle but swore I was going to stop buying. Now you publish a shopping list?
    Actually I really really love you, just hate my lack of willpower lol. Thanks much & Happy New Year.

  7. Rhys Ford

    Oh, thank you so much, Leslie S.! I’m very touched you liked Dirty Kiss. Thank you. No words.

    *author fail* :grin:

  8. Gina

    I’ve been trying to get one book on this list, Wingmen by Ensan Case. I’m glad to report that this old novel which is difficult to find (out of print) is going to be republished in 2012.

    Here’s the website of the author for those who are looking for this novel:

    http://www.ensancase.com/

  9. Raine

    This was quite a sobering read…… :eek: I’ve just realised how much money I’ve spent cos I’ve bought an awful lot of these books and it’s all your fault guys!

  10. Sirius

    Hey Lynn can I bother you some more? Could you please add Marathon coowboys by Sarah Black to my list? I knew I was missing something that should not be missing lol. Thanks a lot.

  11. Tom

    Thanks to Wave, Aunt Lynn and all the other reviewers/writers for their contributions to the site, this is the one place I come to when I’m in the mood for a little M/M romance (which, lately, is quite often). Happy New Year to all! :bravo: :thanks: :grin:

  12. Merrian

    :cool: I have read a lot of the books listed and found it interesting that I didn’t closely align with one particular reviewer in my top ten but found my faves spread amongst the crew. It is a fantastic feature of the site to have so many committed readers with interesting things to say about the books they review. Thank you for the time you put in everyone. :smile: (and the chance to use Christian’s little guys)

  13. Madonna196

    Great to see some of my favourites on these lists! Josh Lanyon, Harper Fox, Kaje Harper, Tamara Allen, Abigail Roux, and a recent (to me) writer who is really opening my eyes – JL Merrow.

    There are some on the lists that aren’t my cuppa – different strokes.

    I’m hoping to see more more more from all my favourite authors in 2012, including Tere Michaels, Wren Boudreau (and a sequel to Zero at the Bone). Is that asking too much? ;-)

    Thank you, dear authors, for sharing your wonderful characters with avid readers who, if they’re like me, get a little jolt of *happy* when a new novel is announced here on Wave’s terrific go-to site.

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