Sassy Cat Chat’s Best of 2017 3

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As the end of 2017 is fast approaching, it’s time to wrap up our reading for the year.  I’ve had the privilege of reading some really awesome books this year!  It’s going to be hard, but I’m going to round up my top picks of five star reads.   If you’ve read and loved any of these books, let me know!

This list is organized by publication date and is not in order of my favorites.  Picking a most favorite out of all my favorites would just be too hard!  All of these were stellar books!!

The Animators

The Animators

Way back in January I snagged The Animators by Kayla Rae Whitaker off my TBR pile.  It had been sitting around for a while and I was so sorry that I made it wait for me to read it!  This was an amazing novel about friendship and how we choose who becomes a part of our families.  Amazingly, this was Kayla’s debut novel and that makes it all the more special.  It was quirky, gritty and real, and a true gem of the year.  Pick it up if you’re looking for something a little out of the box.

Published Jan 31, 2017 by Random House



The Roanoke Girls

This was one hum-dinger of a twisted family drama.  If you’re looking for something that will really set your nerves and emotions on fire, then this is the book for you.  Amy Engle’s writing is powerful and engaging.  Her story-telling is some of the best I’ve read this year and I can’t wait for more from her.  The Roanoke Girls is a mysterious, and creepy novel with subject matter that is wrought with emotional turmoil.  It’s not for the squeamish and certainly won’t be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s an amazing novel with a unique story.

Published March 7,2017 by Crown.



Say Nothing

Brad Parks is the author of the very popular Carter Ross detective series of books.  He’s won several prestigious awards as an author.  Say Nothing is his first stand alone novel and it’s the first work I’ve read by him.  I have to say that it was fabulous – there really is no other word for this book.  If you’re a thriller lover or a fan of legal fiction, then Say Nothing is going to cover all the bases and be a perfect choice for your shelves.  It was fast paced and held the tension all the way through the novel.  It’s very rare that I am completely shocked by an ending and this one hit it out of the park.  From start to finish this was a pretty perfect read.

Published March 17, 2017 by Dutton Books



Slightly South of Simple

slightly south of simple

Slightly South of Simple was a charming southern novel for fans of women’s fiction.  This is the first in a new series by Kristy Woodson Harvey called The Peachtree Bluff Series.  Book two, The Secret to Southern Charm, is set to hit shelves around April 2018.  What I loved most about this book is that I loved it!

This type of novel is not my usual read and I rarely love women’s fiction novels.  I find them to be overdone in the way of romantic, fairy tale lives that all have a happy endings and swoon-worthy men.  An old friend of mine used to deem these “hate your husband books” because the picturesque lives and amazing men in them will, well, make you hate your husband for not being so charming, wealthy and amazing.

Kristy has written real women with less than fabulous lives and men.  This family of women love each other as much as they want to run from each other.  They are flawed and they have struggled.  In a nutshell, they are likable and relateable characters that you will care about.

Published April 25, 2017 by Gallery Books

The Alice Network

If I was really, and I mean REALLY, pressed to pick a favorite book of the year The Alice Network could be the one.  I cannot relay to you adequately how amazing I thought this book was.  Beware, it’s a chunker of a book at 520 pages, but you will fly though it!

I have grown to love historical fiction and a good part of that is set in WWI/WWII.  If you’re an author, then it makes sense to write about this time period.  It’s full of stories ripe for the picking and a lot of novels have come from this era.  None of them are quite like The Alice Network.

If you want a book full of bad-ass women that took charge of their lives and made a difference in the world, then this book is for you.  These women were amazing and their stories and lives were awesome.  The Alice Network brings it all to the table and is historical fiction, and storytelling, at it’s finest.  I recommend this book for everyone!  I can’t imagine any reader not loving this book.

Published June 6, 2017 by William Morrow Paperbacks

Before We Were Yours

Before We Were Yours

Before We Were Yours was another incredible historical fiction novel this year.  It fictionalizes the true life story and scandal of Georgia-Tann, a broker for kidnapped children.  Lisa Wingate does a superb job of telling the story of these children and what they endured at the hands of a truly awful woman posing as a champion for neglected children.

This novel is sure to get you feeling all the feels!  It is another example of storytelling and writing that is top notch.  Lisa Wingate is the author of more than twenty novels but this was the first work I’ve read by her.  I hope she has more to come!  Before We Were Yours was a Good Reads 2017 Reader’s Choice winner and no doubt it’s deserving of the honor.

Published June 6, 2017 by Ballentine Books

The Good Daughter

The Good Daughter

No list of my top reads would be complete without a title by Karin Slaughter.  I LOVE her books!  If you’ve never read her work, this is the place to start.  Typical of Karin, this book is a fast paced thriller and it’s graphic.  I can see how her work would push some reader’s boundaries, but I find it completely engrossing.  Honestly, there hasn’t been a book I’ve read by her that I didn’t love.

I was lucky enough to see her speak at The National Book Festival in Washington D.C. this year and I love her even more!  She is not what I expected at all from someone who writes such dark subject matter.  She was quirky and absolutely hilarious!  She’s truly someone I’d love to hang out with sometime (one can dream).

The Good Daughter should be a go-to book for you if you love suspense and thrillers and can handle a walk just over the line of the dark side.

Published August 8, 2017 by William Morrow

The Indio Girl

The Indigo Girl

Last, but in no way least, on my list of top 2017 reads is The Indigo Girl by Natasha Boyd.  The cover hooked me when I saw this pop up over on Net Galley and this is a book you can definitely judge by the cover.  It’s a beautiful book both inside and out.

Natasha is the author of a few romance novels and this was her first venture into historical fiction.  I have to say I think she found her calling and I hope she continues in this category.  The amount of research and love she put into this novel paid off in spades.

Natasha brings to life an amazing historical figure, Eliza Lucas, and shares her long forgotten, but so very important story.  Full of southern charm and history, The Indigo Girl is an exceptional novel.  This book absolutely belongs on your shelf.

Published October 3, 2017 by Blackstone

As a bit of a bonus I’m adding two books that I read this year that will hit stores in 2018.  They are both highly anticipated books and I suggest you head over to your favorite online retailer and get them on pre-order.

The Wife Between Us

The Wife Between Us has been buzzing around the book world for several months already.  It’s also been picked up to be a major motion picture.  The hype about this book is not wrong – it’s an unbelievably good book!  This is set to be one of the biggest books of 2018 and everyone will be talking about it.

Full of shocking suspense, this book delivers on every level!  You’ll be so twisted up and turned around by this plot that you will never see what’s coming.  In one word – FANTASTIC

Coming January, 9, 2018 by St. Martin’s Press


Closer Than You Know

Closer Than You Know

This is the second stand alone novel by Brad Parks and it’s just as good, if not better, than his first, Say Nothing.  I have to say I’ve become a real fan of Brad Parks and was so thrilled to get a (very) early copy of this next novel.

This is a suspense packed, domestic drama that you won’t be able to put down.  It’s a roller coaster ride all the way through.  The tag line for the book tells you all you need to know to be intrigued enough to pick this one up.

Disaster, Melanie Barrick was once told, is always closer than you know.

Coming March 6, 2018 by Dutton

With this list my 2017 is officially all wrapped up!  I hope you find something amazing to pick up and dive into!



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