Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. There is a new subject each week and this week's theme is "Top Ten Underrated/Hidden Gems I Read in the Past Year.
Sword and Verse by Kathy MacMillan
This novel is set in a world where only the privileged few can learn to read and write. The heroine is a slave who is appointed as a tutor in training to the prince so she gets to learn to read and write. Raisa plans to just keep her head down but the Resistance wants her to help them. I liked the worldbuilding, political intrigue and mythology. I think readers who liked An Ember in the Ashes or The Winner's Curse would like this too.
These Vicious Masks by Tarun Shanker and Kelly Zekas
Wanderlost by Jen Malone
Aubree is not very adventurous and as the baby of the family, her mom coddles her and is overprotective. When Aubree makes a mistake that leads to her older sister getting in trouble and missing out on a vital summer job as a tour guide, Aubree reluctantly agrees to go in her sister's place and pretend to be her. It isn't smooth sailing (she loses her cell phone and the itinerary on the plane) but there was plenty of humor and I enjoyed armchair traveling with Aubree.
The Geek's Guide to Unrequited Love
Flying by Carrie Jones
Mana's mom disappears and she finds out that one of her classmates is an acid spitting alien and that her mom is an alien hunter. She also discovers that she has some unusual abilities. This book is kind of like Buffy the Vampire Slayer but with aliens. There is lots of action as well as humor and it was a fun reading experience.
The Seafront Tearoom by Vanessa Greene
A Fireproof Home for the Bride by Amy Scheibe
The Matchmakers of Minnow Bay by Kelly Harms
The Choices We Make by Karma Brown
Hannah and Kate have been best friends since childhood and now that they are both grown and married, they are still a big part of each others' lives. Hannah has always wanted to be a mom but has just found out it isn't meant to be. Kate decides that she would like to carry a baby for Hannah to give her best friend the ultimate gift. It seems like a miracle but then a tragedy happens. This book reminded me of Jodi Picoult and Nicholas Sparks a little bit.
The Sheriffs of Savage Wells
Paisley Bell is running for sheriff though the townsfolk don't know what to make of a woman sheriff. Paisley knows the quirky residents and she cares about them. She's been the acting sheriff since the previous sheriff quit and even before that she did his work for him. She also desperately needs the money to provide for her dad who is losing his memory. Unfortunately the town council has invited outside candidates from around the country to interview for the position, including handsome legendary lawman Cade O'Brien. I thought this story was entertaining and a touching romance with great characters.