The last few years, our very own Rachel Grant has put together Kiss and Thrill’s annual MG/YA summer reading list. But since she’s in the midst of another book release (Covert Evidence), I offered to do the list this year. As a librarian and former reader’s advisor (for all reading levels), I was happy to compile it. It helps that I am surrounded by children who read within these ranges. Besides my fifteen-year old boy/girl twins, I have seven nieces and nephews between 8-18 who offered recommendations.
This year’s list is divided between Young Adult and Middle Grade, then subdivided by genres including YA romance, Paranormal, Action/Adventure, Sci Fi, Fantasy, Classics, etc. I also marked with an asterix those books that have been made into a movie or are currently in movie production. There are books on this list for every tween and teen reader, even the most picky.
Below is just a small sample of this year’s complete list. Since the 2015 list wouldn’t fit on the blog, here are two links: K&T 2015 MG/YA List word (downloadable) file and a K&T 2015 MG/YA List PDF file.
So pour some lemonade, throw down a blanket in the sun, and let’s start reading!
Here are my daughter’s recommendations (for both the books and the series they are part of) in no particular order:
Here are my son’s recommendations (for both the books and the series they are part of) in no particular order:
Here are my Middle Grade recommendations (for both the books and the series they are part of) in no particular order:
If a book you’re looking for is not on this list, please check the 2014 and 2013 lists. I tried not to duplicate titles, but if a series from earlier years had another book added this year, including e-novellas, I added it to this year’s list. Also, there are some annual faves that I duplicated because my kids want to reread them. (The entire Harry Potter Series is always a summer reading re-do!)
Disclaimer: Some of these books are (or once were) controversial. Some older YAs have closed-door adult situations, and others (YA & MG) deal with harsh issues such as suicide, bullying, war, poverty, and loss of a parent. As a librarian, reader’s advisor, and mother, I’ve learned that tweens and teens tend to read within their comfort zone, both emotionally and reading-level wise. All of these books offer a chance for parents and kids to discuss which topics are appropriate now and which books are best left for another summer. But I hope you all find books that will give your family a summer of new adventures and imaginary friends.
Now I need your help. This list is not complete. Are there books that you’ve read and would like to see added to the 2015 list? If you add them in the comments, I’ll update the list and repost it. Thanks!
What characteristics do you prefer in romantic suspense?
a) Sexy Heroes
b) Smart Heroines
c) Killer Romance
d) All of the above
If you answered all of the above, I have a treat for you. (And if you didn’t, what is wrong with you???)
Today I have not one, not two, but three sexy heroes for our Kiss and Thrill audience to drool over, three smart heroines for you to root for, in three killer romances that I hope will keep you reading late into the night.
3 Sexy Heroes
First up, Hugo Martinez. I think the cover tells you everything you need to know, but for the sight-impaired I can say this might be the most alpha hero I’ve ever read. He’s hot, dark, and all hard edges. Brawny, overbearing, and hot. Did I mention he’s hot? Look again at the cover. I’ll wait.
Next, we have Lincoln Frazer. I’ve been looking forward to Lincoln’s book ever since reading A Cold Dark Place. Lincoln wields his brain as much as his brawn in his hunt for a vicious killer. He’s polished and professional on the surface, but underneath he has a burning intensity that is so very appealing.
If you are having trouble picturing Lincoln, this should help. You’re welcome.
Finally, we have Ian Boyd. Ian is dedicated to his job, which he’s very, very good at. His job is lying. Ian hides his dark, deceptive side behind the charming persona John Baker, but Ian’s true self slips out in raw moments, like when a thug with a knife threatens the woman he’s trying very hard not to develop feelings for.
This is the cover model from Covert Evidence, and he’s an excellent fit for Ian. Let’s pause for a moment and enjoy.
3 Smart Heroines
Zelda. A forensic botanist and former CIA covert case officer, she’s got brains, strength, and fierce courage.
Dr. Isadora Campbell. An ER doctor and former Army captain, she knows how to use her intellect to get out of trouble and protect those she cares about.
Cressida Porter. A PhD student studying underwater archaeology, it’s academic research that brings her to Turkey, and her knowledge of Byzantine sites might just save her life.
3 Killer Romances
Named a Desert Isle Keeper at All About Romance, Behind the Mask by Carolyn Crane is dark, sexy, and intense. I can’t wait to go back and read the first three books in the series.
With edge of the seat action and suspense, Cold Fear by Toni Anderson is another fabulous addition to the Cold Justice Series. I am a devoted Toni Anderson fan.
Because it would be weird to praise my own book, I’ll let another author chime in: “With a believable plot, an exotic setting, a smart heroine and a sexy hero – Rachel Grant’s Covert Evidence is the definition of fabulous Romantic Suspense.” – New York Times & USA Today Bestselling Author Toni Anderson
All three books are available now!
Today from 4:00-10:30 Eastern / 1:00-7:30 Pacific, Carolyn, Toni, and I are hosting a Facebook party to celebrate our new releases. We have fabulous guest authors lined up and lots of fun games, excerpts, and prizes. Everyone is welcome. Stop by and comment for a chance to win ebooks and other prizes!
On June 30, EXIT STRATEGY, the first book in my new romantic suspense EXIT Inc. series, will be released by Avon (an imprint of HarperCollins.) Readers have asked me just what is this EXIT Inc. anyway? Obviously, I hope you’ll read the books to find out. But for our KaT readers, I’m giving an exclusive sneak peek into the world of EXIT and explaining what sets this series apart from other series in RomanceLandia.
What is EXIT Inc.?
EXIT is an acronym for “EXtreme International Tours”. EXIT Incorporated is a privately owned company that offers guided outdoor tours all over the world. Or at least, that’s what EXIT wants you to believe. In reality, the tour side of the company is a front for the government sanctioned clandestine organization of highly trained operatives, called Enforcers, who will do whatever it takes–legal or not–to protect the United States and its citizens from terrorists and other criminals. Enforcers are often placed in the role of assassins and preemptively eliminate the bad guys before they can hurt or kill more people.
What makes this series different from other series?
There are a lot of brotherhood, assassin, or secret protector types of series out there, like Laura Kaye’s Hard Ink series or Julie Ann Walker’s Black Knights Inc. series–which are both fantastic! But two main things set EXIT apart from the others.
One – The moral dilemma of assassins preemptively killing bad guys before they can strike again is explored in depth, pitting the heroes and heroines of these stories against each other and giving poignant glimpses into the hearts and minds of each character and why they make the choices they make.
Two – Where other series cast the brotherhood organizations as the force of good, EXIT Inc. turns that completely around. The Enforcers come to realize that the company they’ve devoted their lives to may have been using them all along, and that EXIT Inc. may actually be a force of evil. Seeing how the heroes and heroines come to this realization and what they do about it is what makes this series so fun and exciting.
Is this series related to your Deadly Games series? Yes and no. The Deadly Games series has law-enforcement heroes and heroines primarily focused on hunting down serial killers. It’s very family-centric, with the heroes of each book being either a Buchanan brother or a close friend (such as Logan Richards in the first book) and is set in Florida and Georgia.
The EXIT Inc. series has bad-boy heroes, definitely not law enforcement, whose prey are hard core terrorists and deadly criminals far more dangerous than serial killers. While the Enforcers in these stories form a brotherhood, they aren’t a true family. And the books are set in the two places where EXIT Inc. maintains headquarters–North Carolina and Colorado.
The connection between the two series is that the last Deadly Games book–TAKE THE KEY AND LOCK HER UP–features Devlin Buchanan, who is an assassin for EXIT Incorporated. The book can be considered as a prequel for the EXIT series as it introduces the company and some of the primary players. The EXIT series is actually a natural spin-off that happened organically while I was writing Devlin’s story. And for fun, I feature many of the Buchanans in cameo roles in this new series. But you can read and enjoy the EXIT books without having ever read the Deadly Games books.
How many books will be in this new series? Currently there are three books planned: EXIT Strategy, No EXIT, and Final EXIT.
How often will these books be released? Unless the schedule changes, they will come out about every six months, beginning with the first book on June 30, 2015.
How can I buy the EXIT books? This series is in print and ebook. You should be able to buy these books in Walmart, Barnes and Noble, and many other “brick and mortar” physical book stores beginning June 30, 2015. You can also order print or ebook formats online pretty much anywhere–like Amazon, B&N, iBooks, and Kobo. AND YOU CAN PRE-ORDER RIGHT NOW!
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I hope that answers some of your questions about this new series. Please let me know if you have more questions! EXIT STRATEGY is available for pre-order now. The description and buy links appear below.
Lena Diaz launches her thrilling new series featuring the undercover vigilantes of EXIT Inc. with a skilled operative putting his life—and his heart—on the line for a woman in trouble
When Sabrina Hightower awakens to the sound of an intruder, she figures he’s there to rob her, murder her— or worse. She doesn’t expect to be carried off by a muscle-bound stud with male-model good looks . . . or that he came to rescue her.
Mason Hunt became an enforcer with EXIT Inc. to eliminate the bad guys—terrorists, militia groups, all those who would do America harm. But his latest target is innocent. If EXIT could lie about sultry, strong-willed Sabrina, what darker truths might they be concealing?
Going rogue in the rugged North Carolina mountains, Mason risks everything to keep Sabrina close, especially now that EXIT’s lethal assassins are chasing them down. The heat is on . . . but it’s nothing compared to the slow burn of seduction.
What other authors are saying about EXIT STRATEGY…
“Sexy romance and edge-of-your-seat suspense…EXIT STRATEGY is a book not to be missed!” –NYT and USA Today Bestselling author Cynthia Eden
“Taut, compelling… kept me hooked to the last page.” -NYT Bestselling author Mary Burton
“EXIT STRATEGY is a tension-packed read, an addicting mix of suspense and romance.” – Kendra Elliot
“EXIT STRATEGY starts out with a bang and never lets up. Perfect pacing, smart and sexy, this is exactly what you want in a romantic suspense.” – Award winning author HelenKay Dimon
Lena Diaz is a country girl at heart who has planted her Kentucky roots deep into the sandy soil of north Florida where she lives with her hubby and a shetland sheepdog. FSU-grad-son and college-daughter visit when they can. Lena is an action movie and crime-TV junkie. She also loves gardening, and hiking in the beautiful Smoky Mountains in Tennessee whenever she can get away. EXIT STRATEGY is Lena’s 10th published novel.
And the winner of a $10 Amazon gift card from last week’s post, courtesy of Heather Ashby and Chris Bergeron, is Nancy Stillings! Congratulations!!!!