Books of the Month January 2021

Books of the Month January 2021

Although January didn't automatically end all the problems of the previous year as many had hoped, it did bring with it a lull following the busy holiday season. For many, it means a fresh start and an opportunity to try and do better. January is also a time of new resolutions, such as reading more books or living a healthier lifestyle. If you are one of those who vowed to read more, here are the best books of the month as chosen by our readers to get you started.

Best Romance

Shunned No More

by Christina McKnight

Shunned No More by Christina McKnight

Romance fans couldn't get enough of Shunned No More by Christina McKnight. This novel is part of her A Lady Forsaken series and stars Lady Viola Oberbrook. Viola fled to her father's country estate after twin brothers ended up killing each other in a duel over her. Eight years later Viola believes that she finally has her life back on track, but then the Earl of Haversham, Brock Spencer arrives on the scene. Brock was away on military service to the King when his brothers killed each other and now vengeance is foremost on his mind. However, neither Viola nor Brock expects what happens when their paths cross.

Best Action & Adventure

ICE

by Kevin Tinto

ICE by Kevin Tinto

ICE is the first novel in the trilogy of the same name by Kevin Tinto. The last thing that archaeologist Leah Andrews was expecting to discover in a dark New Mexico cavern was a Native American cliff dwelling that has been abandoned for 800 years. Even more surprising is the presence of brilliantly colored, granite crystals that are only native to a frozen mountain range in central Antarctica. To find out more, Leah enlists the help of her estranged husband, Jack Hobson, who is a climbing guide. What they discover could change history and science forever, but could also lead to nuclear conflict when the Russians become involved.

Best Mystery & Thriller

Friends and Foes

by L. C. Turner

Friends and Foes by L. C. Turner

Friends and Foes by L. C. Turner is the first book in her Read Wine Bookstore cozy mystery series. The protagonist, Trixie Pristine, sets out to make all her dreams come true by opening a quaint bookstore with her two closest friends. Unfortunately, this new endeavor takes a turn for the worse when it becomes clear that someone is trying to sabotage the business. The three women are not content to just sit back and let the police handle affairs, so they set out to investigate what is going on themselves.

Best Children's Book

Sleepers

by Darcy Pattison

Sleepers by Darcy Pattison

Sleepers by Darcy Pattison is part of her The Blue Planets World series for younger readers. The protagonist, Jake Rose, is half-human and half-alien with the ability to breathe air as well as underwater. Although Jake was rase on a planet called Rison, he is sent to live with his human father's parents on Earth after a science-gone-wrong scenario. His mother, who is Rison's ambassador to Earth, is tasked with peacefully finding a new home for her people in Earth's oceans. Unfortunately, Jake discovers that Earth's elite ELLIS forces have less than peaceful intentions for the Risonian aliens and it is up to him to stop them.

Best Young Adult

Leftover Girl

by C. C. Bolick

Leftover Girl by C. C. Bolick

Leftover Girl by C.C. Bolick is a coming-of-age novel that blends high school drama with science fiction. It is the story of 15-year-old Jessica Ray Delaney who barely remembers the night her adoptive parents found her as a four-year-old barefoot in the snow. Jes is no ordinary girl, but her parents insist that she keeps her past a secret, which means lots of moving without notice and struggling to fit in. However, things change when they move to a new town to start over yet again and Jes finds herself drawn to a boy who is also new in town.

Best Fantasy

Death and Dating

by A. A. Chamberlynn

Death and Dating by A. A. Chamberlynn

Death and Dating by A. A. Chamberlynn is the first novel in her The Quinn Chronicles series, which is a spin-off of her bestselling Zyan Star series. It is the story of Quinn Devereux, a girl back from the dead after making a deal with Death. However, being corporeally challenged and running souls for Death makes it difficult for Quinn to have a dating life. To complicate things even further, Quinn is called in to find out who murdered the high priestess of the coven that she left decades ago. Then there's the government group hunting supernaturals and a reunion with the warlock who broke her heart to make life even more chaotic for Quinn.

Best Historical Fiction

Ruthless

by Ken Coleman

Ruthless by Ken Coleman

Ruthless by Ken Coleman is the revenge story of a 14-year-old boy who accompanies a young woman on her quest to track down the people who killed his parents. It is a quest that takes them across hundreds of miles of territory from Kansas to Texas where they face danger every step of the way. Standing between them and the desperados is some of the wildest and most lawless towns in the west, but nothing will stop the unlikely duo from catching up with the killers.

Best Horror

Tamed

by Douglas R Brown

Tamed by Douglas R Brown

Not only are werewolves real in Tamed by Douglas R. Brown, but they also make excellent pets. However, what would happen if the werepets were not as loyal, docile, and 100% safe as the WereHouse insists? This is the situation that paramedic Christine Alt finds herself in when she is attacked by a rogue werepet during a routine EMS call. While she escapes with her life, Christine begins to realize that the WereHouse is hiding a terrible secret. Unfortunately for her, they will also stop at nothing to prevent her from exposing their secret.

Best Literary Fiction

The Auctioneers

by Florian Schneider

The Auctioneers by Florian Schneider

The Auctioneers by Florian Schneider tells the story of an LA social worker named Anabel Medina. After managing to survive a violent childhood in El Salvador, Anabel finds it ironic that she ends up in the crosshairs of a heavily armed gunman opening fire at a shopping mall in Malibu. However, Anabel is able to subdue the shooter in a video that goes viral. Her life changes in the wake of the event, especially after she meets a disenchanted war photographer who encourages her to run for office as an independent candidate.

Best Science Fiction

First Flyght

by S. J. Pajonas

First Flyght by S. J. Pajonas

Vivian Kawabata finds herself betrayed by her own brother in First Flyght by S. J. Pajonas. She is the heir to the family agricultural empire, but her privileged destiny is snatched away from her when her bank account is emptied. Vivian is determined to restore her rightful place in the universe, though, so she secures an old ship from her aunt to begin a new business. There's a fine line between trade and smuggling and it is one that Vivian is not afraid to cross as she tries to rebuild her lost fortune. Fortunately for Vivian, there are plenty of eligible partners willing to help her out that she meets along the way.

Best Paranormal

Induction

by T. K. Eldridge

Induction by T. K. Eldridge

Induction by T. K. Eldridge is a paranormal mystery starring Sidonie and Sinclair Boudreau, who are the offspring of a witch and a shifter. It is a very unusual pairing that usually results in death, but Sid and Sin managed to survive. They also managed to sidestep the family legacy of supernatural policing, but the disappearance of their parents changes things. Not only do the twins have an enemy they didn't know even existed, but to bring their parents home they will have to deal with an ancient prophecy.

Best Non-Fiction

Hungry for Life

by Rachel Richards

Hungry for Life by Rachel Richards

Hungry for Life is the painfully moving memoir of Rachel Richards as she shines a light on her experiences with anorexia. Her story begins at the tender age of eight-years when she develops an eating disorder that takes her years to overcome. Rachel uses this book to reveal the complexity and seriousness of this condition, which for many is still shrouded in misconceptions and assumptions. It offers a glimpse of what goes through the head of a person who decides to stop eating and shut out her family and friends.

Terry Shepherd - Thriller With an Intoxicating Plot and Descriptive Prose
FEATURED AUTHOR - Terry Shepherd wrote his first short story at age eleven and was first published as a non-fiction author in 2008. He created Detective Jessica Ramirez in 2019, publishing his thriller "Chasing Vega" in 2020. When his grandchildren asked to star in their own stories, he created the "Waterford Detective" stories for his grandson and published the popular "Juliette and the Mystery Bug" series, co-authored with his wife, Colleen, when his granddaughter wondered how kids could protect themselves… Read more