Random (but not really)

Friday, December 28, 2018

The Books of 2018!

And now, for the 2018 reading wrap-up!

My posts for the year look like the following:
Terrible Covers (this post)
Great Covers: Romance
Great Covers: Fantasy
Great Covers: Mystery

My favorite YA books of 2018
My favorite audio books of 2018
My favorite paranormal romance books of 2018
My favorite romance books of 2018
My favorite fantasy books of 2018
My favorite mystery books of 2018

For the most part, I try to limit this lists to books published in the past 2 years, but I’ll also make note of some older books I hadn’t read for a decade or so, and want to draw your attention to if you haven’t read them before.

Since only ONE book made my terrible list this year, we’ll open with that.




The Duchess Deal: Girl Meets Duke (2017) Tessa Dare

This is NOT a terrible cover in and of itself. In fact it’s pretty inoffensive. Where it fails utterly is that it has literally nothing to do with the content and characters of the book.

“Only one act is required on your part. You must permit me to visit your bed. I’m well aware of my distasteful appearance. You need not fear any crude or lascivious attentions from my quarter. All encounters will be as dignified as possible. No lights, no kissing. And of course, once you are pregnant with my heir, we will be done.”

Ash was horribly scarred in the war, keeps the heavy drapes in his house closed, covers up as much as possible in front of everyone, and hates being seen in public.

That cover has absolutely NOTHING to do with the book, and in fact gives you no true impression of the characters AT ALL. Which is what makes the cover so terrible. Because Ash’s scarring is what makes him who he is–in fact it’s the reason he chooses Emma for his bride–because she desperately needs security, and he hopes granting her that will make up for having to be married to him.

Ash is angry and broody and self-loathing, and the book is as much about his coming to terms with Emma accepting him as he is as about the romance between the two (and to me, the far more interesting part of the story).

Also, Emma is awesome.

“I will not be your mistress. My body is not for let.”

“That can’t be entirely true. You’re a seamstress, aren’t you? Your fingers are for let.”

“If you don’t know the difference between a woman’s fingers and her womb, I would definitely not share a bed with you.”

Did I want to see scars and deformity? Of course not. But they could have at least tried to make the cover match the story.

And BTW, despite the boinking, it’s quite a good story, and I really liked seeing Ash’s growth and change. And I liked even more that there was no miracle solution–it was him coming to terms with his changed circumstances, and accepting himself.

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