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Tuesday, December 31, 2019

Steel Hart Book Blast, Guest Post, and Giveaway - RJ Blain’s 10 Favorite Books/Series (and why.)

Here we have book two in the urban fantasy/paranormal series from author RJ Blain. You also get a guest post from the author about her favorite books, and a giveaway, open through 1/24. Good luck.

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Jesse Alexander, #2
Urban Fantasy/Paranormal
Publisher: Pen & Page Publishing
Date Published: December 25, 2019

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With the Hope Diamond locked around her throat, Jesse Alexander finds herself in the unfortunate position of being a walking national treasure. With the Starfall stone poised to pulse and flood the world with more of its magic, she must figure out how to remove it before she becomes its pawn yet again.

Unfortunately, the stone has a mind—and plans—of its own. Add in a determined tiger, a wolf out for revenge, and an ultimatum to find her clan's missing Starfall stone, and it will take all of Jesse's wit and cunning to survive with her life—and her heart—intact.

RJ Blain’s 10 Favorite Books/Series (and why.)

It’s not often I get to really gush about my favorite books and authors. I get carried away, and, well… I get really carried away. I’m going to allow myself to get a little carried away here—and go on a trip through memory lane.

Here goes. Please note the order is prone to change. All of these books have spent time on my #1 spot… so I just put them in whatever order. Except my current top pick… which is my current top pick.

10: The Path Trilogy by Diana Pharaoh Francis. I’ve re-read this trilogy many times, and I just love the main character, the twists, the turns, and the ever-present conflict looming on the horizon. At times, I wanted to fling the books—because a good book with conflict does that. It is a trilogy packed with heart. When I want to delve into the depths of a traditional fantasy, this is one of my go-tos.

9: Elantris by Brandon Sanderson. This book made me laugh. This book made me cry. This book also made me cry again when it didn’t seem like Brandon Sanderson would be able to make a signing I’d driven 6 hours to attend because I knew he’d be there. (He made it.) This is just a favorite. I try to re-read it every year or so, but this one just stuck with me.

Some scenes still make me cry. A lot.

It’s just a good book.

… as a side-note, asking an author to pick the top 10 books/series is the equivalent of torture, and I might be screaming while trying to figure out which ones are really my top 10. Why isn’t this a top 100 list? That would be easier.

8: Master of Crows by Grace Draven I just love everything about this book, which is really a trend here. Grace Draven makes two appearances on my list, as my favorites of hers are in two different series. I like the other one better, but it’s one of my top three favorite books I’ve ever read.

7: Burn for Me / Hidden Legacies series by Ilona Andrews. This is one of two appearances by Ilona Andrews. Burn for Me is my favorite book of the Hidden Legacies series, and I’ve read it more times than I can count. I adore Nevada and Rogan, and I would read about them forever if I could. (And while I do quite love the Kate Daniels series, it comes third for me, so it doesn’t take up a slot on the list. But gets this very honorable mention.)

6: Powers that Be by Anne McCaffrey and Elizabeth Scarborough. I enjoyed the hell out of the entire trilogy, but the first book will always be my favorite. It’s so different, and such a fun read.

5: Crystal Singer Trilogy by Anne McCaffrey. I just adore everything about this trilogy, too. That’s a theme on this list. Just love everything. But my favorite is that one part in the third book. There’s something to be said about finding out not all is actually lost.

4: Jane Yellowrock Series by Faith Hunter. Beast is best hunter. Do I really need to say anything more about this series? Beast is best hunter.

3: Dragon Unleashed by Grace Draven. Wait, what, you may ask? But this book isn’t out yet! Yeah. I’ve already read it, and all I can say is run, do not walk, to your favorite book vendor of choice and get a copy of this book. It’s everything good about Fantasy Romance. And that’s all I can say about the book at this point in time. I’m allowed to gush and say how much I love it, and well, I’ve purchased multiple copies for myself because I must have it in all available formats.

It’s just that good.

2: The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold. This has everything I love about traditional fantasy, a character I absolutely adore, and it’s just… AAHHH. I just love everything about this book.

I have it signed. On my shelf. It is one of my favorite things ever. I sometimes pet it. Possessively. And start growling if my husband eyes me like I’m weird.

(What? I am weird… and it’s a precious treasure.)

1: Last but not least is Silver Shark by Ilona Andrews. It’s hard picking one of my favorite Ilona Andrews books, but this one is taking the top spot. Every time I need a pick me up, I go to this book. Technically, I think it’s a novella, but I don’t care. It has everything I love about science fiction romance in it. There’s action, adventure, excitement, and romance. There’s a main character who has her entire life challenged. There’s a hero worth swooning over.

It just has everything I love in a good book, and I can’t recommend it enough.

I have the collection from Subterranean Press that has this in it. It is one of my prized possessions.

About the Author

RJ Blain suffers from a Moleskine journal obsession, a pen fixation, and a terrible tendency to pun without warning.

In her spare time, she daydreams about being a spy. Her contingency plan involves tying her best of enemies to spinning wheels and quoting James Bond villains until satisfied.

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Disclosure: Java John Z's did not receive compensation for this post and is not responsible for prize fulfillment.
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  1. Thanks for hosting

  2. I want to know what happens. Def need to read!

  3. This sounds awesome! I love Urban Fantasy/Paranormal books! The cover is gorgeous! ❤