Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Guaranteed to Make Kimberly Swoon

Top Ten Tuesday is the weekly meme hosted by the excellent blog The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic of choice? Books that made me swoon. (Fitting for Valentine’s Day, which I will be celebrating with cookies and the movie Winter’s Tale, which is sure to make me weep.) I’m a romantic at heart, so that happens probably more than it should. Here are a few of the books that made my heart happy.

1)  Persuasion by Jane Austen – When I was a teenager and first reading Austen, it was all about Pride & Prejudice for me. Now that I’m older, Persuasion has become my favorite Austen novel. If you don’t swoon at Captain Wentworth’s letter to Anne, you might be heartless.

2) North & South by Elizabeth Gaskell – Similarly, I thought I loved Mr. Darcy until I saw Richard Armitage as Mr. Thornton in the BBC version of this book. And then I read the book and Mr. Thornton was even more dreamy, if that’s even possible. The proposal scene, his feelings towards Margaret, his passionate defense of everything and everyone he loves… I just can’t handle his loveliness or his gut wrenching, beautiful interactions with Margaret.

3) Cotillion by Georgette Heyer – I’ve read many of Heyer’s novels and this is my absolute favorite. By turns clueless and astonishingly astute, Freddy is one of Heyer’s most endearing characters. I confess I have a bit of a crush on him! The ending scenes are, in my opinion, some of the best Heyer wrote.

4) He Shall Thunder in the Sky by Elizabeth Peters – Amelia Peabody and Emerson are my absolute favorite literary couple, and all their interactions make me grin happily. But in this book, it was the romance between Ramses and Nefret that really got to me. It was heartbreaking at times, but so emotionally fulfilling.

5) The Dark Enquiry by Deanna Raybourn – Lady Julia and Brisbane are my second favorite literary couple, and this book is my absolute favorite in the series. Their relationship is perfection in its believability and I can’t read this book without swooning.

6) The Thorn Birds by Colleen McCullough – Perhaps an odd choice, since the love story is doomed and tragic, but I can’t help it. The book and the mini series are beautiful and swoon worthy. With both a landscape and a love story that are by turns sweeping and heartbreaking, it’s hard not to be swept up in the romance.

7) Anne of the Island by L.M. Montgomery – In last week’s list of books that made me cry, I mentioned the last book in the Anne of Green Gables series. If that book made me cry, the rest of the series made me swoon. Anne and Gilbert’s love story was one of my favorites, and this book, where Anne finally realizes she loves Gilbert is the swooniest of all. (I used to re-imagine that scene in my head as a teenager. My first intro to fanfiction?)

8) Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins – I mention this book a lot on this blog, I’m well aware. But it’s because it’s probably the most perfect YA romance, and it just gets better each time I read it. It’s the ultimate feel good novel with a truly swoon-worthy love interest.

9) For Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund – This book is amazing. Peterfreund somehow managed to make Persuasion (see #1 on this list) fit seamlessly into a post-apocalyptic world. The plot is full of intrigue and danger, yet loses none of the heart-melting scenes from the original.

10) Easy by Tammara Webber – This is a recent read (as in, I finished it yesterday) that I picked up purely to give New Adult a try. I wasn’t expecting much, but by the time I finished I was completely blown away by the novel. It has so much to say about a serious subject, yet manages to do so while also giving readers a completely swoony hero and some sizzling scenes.