December 23, 2015

Wednesday Wishes: Christmas Edition


So I've been getting a lot of questions lately about what books to recommend for Christmas. Some have been asking for a good one for snooty-pa-tooty readers. You know they need "intelagent" books. So The Martian, because even they cant' say snoot it. (You hope.)

But the main discussion has been about which books, or series, I try to force get others to read. The ones I know they just cant' say no to.

So here is a list of ten books that I gift out, whether it's just book one or the entire series. They're all in different age groups, but I think any age can enjoy them! Keep in mind this is a list for those you're trying to get, or expand, their interest in books.

Mercy Thompson series
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Author: Patricia Briggs
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: There is a spin-off series, Alpha & Omega.

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This one is a no brainer, especially for Urban Fantasy fans. However, there are still Urban Fantasy fans that—GASP—haven't read it! So if you know they haven't, why not get them the first book? This is also a great series to introduce someone to the Genre. Very few people have not liked this, and none of the people I've gifted it to have disliked them.
Some readers might find the first book a tad slow, but they should be hooked! Not to mention if they like the Mercy universe, they're is a spin-off!
Charlie Madigan series
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Author: Kelly Gay
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: Gritty, dark, and smart! 

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Now this one is for hard core Urban Fantasy fans and the newbie. This is one that I can't help but spam spread the word to anyone looking for a good read. It baffles me how such an amazing series doesn't have more readers! The reviews are glowing, the characters and world are FREAKING awesome, and this is one of the best portrayals of a daughter and her mother. Especially since said daughter is so real. Face it writing decent children characters in adult books is hard, and harder to find.

Cal Leandros series
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Author: Rob Thurman
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: It's a female author, but the guys love it too!

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This series has gained more popularity, but it's still not as well known as some of the others. This is one, along with the Charlie Madigan series that I never hesitate to spam out. It's a good series, it's gritty, clever, and unique! The guys will respect the male brothers, and ladies will crush hard on them. (And respect them of course. ^_-)

Kate Daniels series
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Author: Ilona Andrews
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: This is a husband and wife duo!

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To be honest the Andrews writing team has quite a few great series: The Edge, Hidden Legacy, Kate Daniels, Kate Daniels World, and (my personal favorite) Innkeeper Chronicles.

But this is their first series, and definitely worth the buzz! The humor is great and each book gets better and better. The best part of this series is how the romance develops and becomes an actual relationship. Not to mention that the many side characters present in the series are the coolest! And you might just get a short for them.

Vampire Academy series
Genre: Paranormal Young Adult
Author: Richelle Mead
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: There is a spin-off series called Bloodlines.

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Forget about that horrible movie you may have heard people snickering about, or you sadly watched it. This is a great series to reintroduce people to the world of vampires! Whether they need something to get the Twilight taste out, or they're Twilight fans who need something new! OR, gasp, they've never been introduced to vampires.

What I enjoy is that Rose, the kick butt hero, isn't all knowing and all strong. She learns in each book. Most importantly this series takes quite the twist!

Old Kingdom Trilogy (AKA Abhorsen series) 
Genre: High Fantasy (Young Adult)
Author: Garth Nix
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: Technically this is no longer a trilogy. BUT. It still is sold in those pretty box sets, and to me will always be a trilogy.

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No matter how many books I read this is still on of the most unique stories and magical world setups. This is an original, and many books after have borrowed off the idea. This is perfect for adults and great for getting teens out of there shells. It is a bit dark at times, as necromancers and death are a subject, but it's also very humorous.

Harry Potter series
Genre: Paranormal Young Adult
Author: J.K. Rowling
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: There are lots of different box sets to buy this in, so that means some are waaaaaay cheaper then others.

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OK. OK. This one is clearly one you're wondering, "WTF is it doing on this list Shera? Everyone has read it. Everyone." And a few years a go I would have said the same thing. But. That's not true.  Especially since the movies came out.

The new generation just aren't bothering to read them! The horror, I know. Not to mention others who just decided to watch the movies to get the story.

Enchanted Forest Chronicles series
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy 
Author: Patricia C. Wrede
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: A classic and staple for any reader . . . especially of fantasy.

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As said before this is a classic! There's plenty of fun for all age groups! Little graders will just find it as fun fantasy drama, with an awesome Princess who doesn't go by the rules. The humor is very clever and there is some adult jokes in there for the grown-ups.
In the end this series is one that I adore. It's what officially made me into a hardcore reader. There are not enough words to use to tell people how amazing these books are.
Gail Carson Levine books
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy
Author: Gail Carson Levine
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: These are all stand alones.

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These books are for everyone. Ella Enchanted is so moving! No really it's the first book that I ever heart-sobbed through. Then of course The Two Princesses of Bamarre brought on the water works.

I enjoy that both books broke down the stereotypes of fairy tales and Princess stories.

Dragon Slippers series
Genre: Young Adult High Fantasy

Author: Jessica Day George
Add it: Amazon | Goodreads
Additional Information: This is also a good one for middle graders.

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This is a great series for readers who have read a lot. It's a refreshing tale and is more of a modern update on Wrede's and Levine's work. Don't worry it stands on it's own.

Or this is great for readers who need to be introduced to fantasy!

That's it! I promise. I hope this list helps you out trying to figure out what books to introduce someone to reading with. Or broadening someone's reading horizon. Or maybe you found something for yourself!

What's some of the books/series you'd recommend gifting to someone to get them into reading?

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