Thursday 13 :: Favorite Books/Series

Although I’m a writer, I was a reader first. I can devour a book a day if I have nothing else to do and I indulge in reading every chance I get so in honor of my love of reading, today’s 13 are the books I return to time and time again.
13 Favorite Books/Series of All Time 
(these are in no particular order)

1. Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon. Historical/Time-Travel/Scottish Highlander/Sage LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this series. I’ve read it twice and that is a feat. These books range in the 1,000 page length, the largest so far about 1,400 pages! The heroine, Claire, slips through the standing stones and meets the hero, Jamie Fraser, a Scottish highlander who is larger than life. The trials they overcome are epic. The stories start when they’re young, in their 20’s and the last book (to be released-the series isn’t finished) they were in their 40’s. I can’t get enough of these and because they’re SO huge, it takes the author nearly 4 years to write the next one. Talk about sitting on pins and needles! I’ll wait though. They’re worth it.

2. The Fading Lands Series by C.L. Wilson – Fantasy/Romance This book has it all. A shape-shifting Fae King, an average girl who is more than even ‘she’ knows, evil lords doing evil things and a whole host of amazing characters. Oh, and Romance! *sigh* I love Rain, the hero, in this book. I re-read it just for him. hehe
3. Warprize by Elizabeth Vaughan – Fantasy/Romance I adore this trilogy and wanted to cry when it ended. It’s what sold me on Fantasy Romance. The hero, Keir is the Warlord of an invading race and he takes Lara, the sister of the King, as his prize to stop the war. Their language difference makes the story more unique and reading some of the language and knowing what the author means is fun. It’s an epic journey with many mis-communications but the love story is fantastic. I just wish it wouldn’t have been written in 1st person perspective as I would have loved to get into Keir’s head!
4. The Fever Series by Karen Marie Moning – Paranormal Romance – If you haven’t read this series yet, do! The Fae in this series aren’t the sparkly, fun beings you’re used to. The Unseelie are converging into our world and the heroine can see them. It’s up to her, and the very OMG sexy Jericho Barrons to get the book that will seal the realms. It’s one long adventure so make sure you have the next book at hand before reading the first. I spent many a-night reading and only put the books away when the sun came up.
5. The Bronze Horseman Trilogy – Historical Romance What’s not to love about these books. They’re set during the German invasion of Russia and tells the story of Tatiana, a 16 yr old girl and the boy, Alexander, she falls in love with…a boy who happens to be dating her sister. Their love affair is tragic and inspiring and we see the struggle they have in hiding that love from others until they can be together. And THAT is when the book is beautiful. I cried while reading this book, laughed and got so angry at the characters I wanted to toss the book out the window but I’ll never part with them. They’re on my top 5 list of all time favorites.
6. The Wolf and the Dove – Historical Romance – In classic ‘Bodice Ripper’ fashion, this story tells of an invading viking hero who kidnaps the heroine, forces her to love him and realizes he loves her in return. Not many people like the 80’s ‘forced seduction’ type stories but I love these. hehe The hero’s are such jackasses but it gives them such a personality they’re hard not to want to read about. This one isn’t for everyone but these aren’t rec’s as much as they are MY favorite reads!
7. The Witch and the Warrior – Scottish/Historical Romance  I love a good Scottish highlander romance and this is one of my favorites. The hero kidnaps the heroine as she’s being burned at the stake for being a witch to cure his ill son. She isn’t a witch but pretends to be so he doesn’t kill her, or return her to the people who tried to kill her. The characters in the book are hilarious. There’s a group of old men who can barely walk but cause a lot of mischief, the heroine is constantly forced to produce some witchy spell that she makes up and somehow, the spells work in some way. The hero loves with his whole heart and watching him protect this woman no one seems to like or even want around just flat out does it for me. I love Karyn Monk’s books
8. The Choice by Nicolas Sparks – Contemporary Romance Unlike most Nic Sparks books, no one dies in this one! It’s full of the usual tragic events and over-dramatized fluff but I still re-read it once  a year. The love story between these two main characters is why I keep going back to it. It’s the ultimate tale of Love Concurring All.
9. Saving Grace by Julie Garwood – Historical (Scottish Highlander) Romance I love Julie Garwood books. Most are set in the Scottish Highlands, as is this one, and I’m a sucker for those Highlanders! Especially this one. The heroine is forced to marry the hero after her husband is killed in battle. She’s terrified of men after her abusive marriage and the hero in this story is rough and harsh in his ways but tries his best to be gentle with her and refuses to let her do anything but nap. LOL He treats her her like a queen, to his thinking, but to hers, he’s just locking her away. It’s a fantastic story and I love this hero. I read this once a year also.
10. Golden Surrender by Heather Graham – Historical Romance Another Viking story! The irish heroine is forced to marry the hero and in true Bodice Ripper style, there’s a lot of forced seduction going on! This book, I read in one day. I just Could. Not. Put. It. Down. There were points I was so angry, my hands shook. LOL And moments my heart was so broken for the heroine, I had to wipe tears from my eyes. It’s a hard story to get through if you like things all rosy and perfect. There’s tons of angst in this one but like the others, it’s one of my favorites!
11. Stardust of Yesterday – Lynn Kurland – Historical Romance This book is hilarious. The hero is a ghost and he’s made it his mission (in death) to avenge himself from all the descendants responsible for his death. Enter the heroine, a woman who inherits the castle he haunts. A good portion of the book is spent with the hero ‘haunting’ the heroine and driving her near crazy. The hilarious things he does have me laughing every time I read it. Of course, you can’t have a real romance without a real person so a funky little curse gives our ghostly hero a human form but…. I won’t spoil you. Read this book! You’re going to love it. (This book is # 11 in a series and the hero appears (alive) in The More I See You, book #8 of the series)
12. Immortals After Dark series by Kresley Cole – Paranormal Romance This series is fantastic and it’s hard to pick a favorite but this one, I’ve read the most. It might be the wolf shifter, or the way the hero and heroine fight, sometimes nastily, and get under each others skin. The characters in this series stick with you forever and I’m waiting for Nix’s book. She’s a fav character. They don’t call her Nuking Futs for nothing! LOL
13. Linda Lael Miller – Historical/Contemporary Western Romance If Linda’s name is on it, I’ll read it! I’ve yet to read one of her books I didn’t love. I have them ALL in print and have re-read them numerous times. Start with this series, The McKettrick Cowboys. They’re the ones who start it all.
And there you have it! MY 13 favorite books/series. Tell me YOUR favorite book/s in the comments below.
All material &copy2005-2012 to Lily Graison
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About Lily Graison

Lily Graison is a USA TODAY bestselling author of historical western romances. She also writes a variety of genres under the name L. R. Grasion. Most all of her stories lean heavily to the spicy side with strong female leads and heroes who tend to always get what they want. She writes full time and lives in Hickory, NC with her husband and a house full of Yorkies

7 Responses to Thursday 13 :: Favorite Books/Series

  1. Megan Riverina Romantics says:

    OMG Lily, I’ve read Lord of the Fading lands so many times that It’s falling apart!

  2. Lily Graison says:

    Have you?! Not many people I know ‘have’ read it. Not sure why, though. Its a FANTASTIC story. Rain is so…grrr and Ella so innocent with a touch of scary. LOL And the Fae (fans self) They’re ALL drool worthy. I can’t wait until she gets the new stories finished!

  3. Megan Riverina Romantics says:

    I agree that not a lot of people have heard of this series. I just happened to come across it by chance.  The only thing for me is that Cheryl writes so slow lol! It took her ten years to finish the Tairen Soul series. While my brain says that art takes time, my heart say hurry the hell up already! I need a fix lol!

  4. Lily Graison says:

    I’ll agree!! Some books just take more time than others (my paranormals take me a year to write) but it doesn’t stop me from grinding my teeth wanting more. At least she doesn’t take as long as Diana Gabaldon. I have to wait, on average, 4 yrs for a new Outlander book. hehe

  5. Megan Riverina Romantics says:

    Yeah, I’ve heard that she takes forever to write her books. I haven’t read the Outlander series yet.

  6. Lily Graison says:

    Outlander is one of those books you either love or hate. I loved sister hated it. hehe 

    I think its the ‘epic’ journey I enjoy most. After 9 books, which range between 700-1400 pages per book, its hard ‘not’ to get invested in the characters.

  7. Megan Riverina Romantics says:

    It’s in the TBR mountain

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