As the ball drops, the champagne is drunk, and resolutions we’ll no doubt break are made we welcome in the new year.  The excitement builds for another year and what things it will bring.  For many, it’s a clean slate, a time to start over and better ourselves.  Here, at OBS we are excited for the new adventures to come … but most of those adventures come in the form of a nice bound book or in our kindles or other ereaders!  However, before we get swept away on those literary journeys, we wanted to take time to reflect on this past year.  So with our further ado here are some of our favorite reads of 2018!  Sit back and enjoy and feel free to run down memory lane with us!

Omar’s Favorites:

Magic Triumphs by Ilona Andrews

The last book in the Kate Daniels series has arrived. Kate is now a mother and she needs to find a way to save her son from the Immortal Wizard Roland, her father, who wants a new heir to raise. But Roland is not the only evil, an ancient and elder being is stealing whole communities around Atlanta and wants Kate as his new Queen. Now is up to Kate and Curran and all Atlanta to fight both evils, some might not survive, but they still hope they can triumph.


Our House by Louise Candlish

What happens when you arrive home after a small weekend holiday and find people living in your house? Well, Fiona Lawson just learned what happens. Her husband and children are gone, the people in her home have official ownership to her house, and all her things are gone. Our House tells the cautionary tale of ownership of a house, lies we tell our loved ones, and scams that take everything from us.


Night and Silence by Seanan McGuire

A long time ago, October Daye gave up her daughter Gillian to keep her safe from the Fae, but Faire doesn’t forget and has now stolen Gillian back. Like always, October has to run against the clock to save her daughter, and in the process, she will learn the truth of the blood in veins. Everything has a price and October is going to learn the price of keeping her daughter breathing.


Noumenon Infinity by Marina J. Lostetter

Noumenon Infinity is the continuation to the bestseller Noumenon. It’s a space travel story of a special Convoy that is traveling to an odd alien monument in space, they want to study it and find out more about the alien race that builds it. The book tells the story from the point of view of different crew members and a previous convoy from the Noumenon book that disappears and reappears thousand years in the future. Evolution plays a great deal in the lives of the convoy and the decisions of humankind.  

Caro’s Favorites:

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi 

I loved everything about this book from the cover art to the story and its characters. Not to mention that Zélie is a good example of what a strong female character can be.

Children of Blood and Bone tells the story of Zélie a teenage girl who only has faint memories of her mother a maji who was killed by a ruthless king. Zélie has the potential to be a powerful Reaper and help her family and the rest of the maji come out from hiding and use their magic once more as long as she can outrun the crown prince. By the end of the story, I was more than hooked and couldn’t believe the cliffhanger readers were left with. I can’t wait for the next book.


Cracked Kingdom by Erin Watt 

I found The Royals book series by recommendation and I was instantly hooked. The first three books tell the story of Ella, an orphan girl who finds out she is the heiress to a fortune left by her estranged father and now there is no reason for her to work as a stripper. Meanwhile, book five in the series is about the middle son of the Royals, who has been dealing for years with drug, gambling, and alcohol addictions but is on his way to getting back on track with his life when he meets the girl who can help him change. In order to read book five, you do have to read book four for the events that happen at the end that link the series to make sense. Easton was one of the characters I wanted to know more about because I felt he was being left out, he looked like he was struggling and we finally got to know why. I really loved Cracked Kingdom and the previous book dedicated to him. Now, if we could only get a book for the Royal twins *wink, wink*

Kayt’s Favorites:

Class Reunions are Murder by Libby Klein

This is a bit longer than most cozies and full of hilarious situations and fabulous mysteries. The characters are a hoot and I fell in love with them immediately. This is a can’t miss read.

Midnight Snacks are Murder by Libby Klein

The follow up to Class Reunions are Murder was just as awesome. Midnight Snacks are Murder was just fantastic. More hilarity and well-developed characters. Fun situations, intrigue, entertainment and just plain ole great writing. I know I cannot wait for the next release in this perfect cozy series!

Portrait of a Sister Laura Bradford

Laura Bradford is one of my favorite authors, and she stepped out of her normal genre’ and wrote a heartwarming, inspiring and fabulously entertaining women’s fiction book in Portrait of a Sister. Still in the Amish setting, but showing us a different side for sure. This book makes you think, makes you feel, and makes you want to read until you are finished. If you are looking for great writing, great characters, great perspective in the women’s fiction genre’, this is a true hit.

Just Plain Murder by Laura Bradford

To round out the year, the late release of Just Plain Murder by Laura Bradford, brought us book 6 in her successful and stellar Amish Mystery series. It was a long wait, but well worth it. This cozy series is a real hit for any readers that enjoy the Amish mystery genre. Book 6 brings some of the history of one of my favorite characters, Jakob, into light. Another fantastic read by a spectacular author.

Andra’s Favorites:

Till Death Do Us Tart by Ellie Alexander

I have come into this series late (this book – #8) but am really glad that I have discovered this new-to-me author, even at this late in the series. Ellie Alexander is wonderful at her craft – creating a cozy mystery with lots of intrigue, some romance (okay…lots of romance since Jules is planning a surprise wedding for her mom and fiancée), lots of great descriptions of food (yummy), nice cover art.  An overall enjoyable cozy mystery which I could not put down once I began to read. I have now gone so far as to secure the prior 7 books in the series!!!

Merrily Ever After by Jenny Holiday

Jenny Holiday has certainly captured what a contemporary romance should be… and within the confines of a novella. Well done! I say this because as a rule, I am not a fan of novellas. I do however, make an exception with this book. The story was well rounded with interesting and well developed characters. Romance was there, angst was there, hunky guys were present. Above everything else, love triumphs in the end. The main topic of the protagonists’ angst was fresh and relevant in today’s world – which was refreshing.  As a first read of Ms. Holidays – I am happy to say I will continue on with her full length stories in this series.

Heidi’s Favorite:

Midnight Blue by L.J. Shen 

I’m a little sad that I only have one book to share in this article, but this book was so much better than I was expecting.  It looks like a smutty romance, but the storyline was great and it was a pretty emotional read all-in-all. It really did blow me away!

He was a rock star that recently got out of rehab. She was a girl that was hired to go on tour with him to keep him sober! And, when these two go together sparks flew!

This was a great book. It was sexy, fun, raw, and emotional … all the things I love!