Top Ten Tuesday – Hidden Gems and Underrated Books I Read in 2016

It’s time for another Top Ten Tuesday, brought to you thanks to the girls at The Broke and the Bookish.  This week’s subject is underrated books, and I have decided that for the purposes of this post, I’m going to mention books I really enjoyed in 2016 that currently have less than 50 reviews on Amazon.

This week’s list was much easier to keep to a manageable number—although, strictly speaking, I still have more than ten books on my list.  But they can be grouped into four series and one novella, so if you go by that count, I’m actually under this week 🙂

So, without further ado, here is my list of underrated books. The titles are linked to the Amazon page (affiliate links):


Embers and Accelerant (Abiassa’s Fire series) – Ronie Kendig

emberskendig-accelerantIf you love fantasy, you have to check out this series by Ronie Kendig.  If you love books by Ronie Kendig, you have to check out this series—by Ronie Kendig.  If you love reading fantastic stories with fantastic characters and fantastic stuff happening and fantastic tension and… lots of fantasticness, you have to read this series!  Are you getting the picture?  I seriously don’t understand why this series doesn’t have more reviews!

PS: If you aren’t convinced yet, read my review of Accelerant here.


Seek and Hide, Found and Lost, Take and Give, and Far and Near (Haven Seekers) – Amanda G. Stevens

Haven Seekers

The best way to gauge my love for this series is to read my review of Far and Near here.  I have kind of cheated a little, because the first novel in this series does actually have more than 50 reviews on Amazon, however the rest of this brilliant series is sadly neglected in the reviews department. 😦 The premise is quite simple: Bibles have been banned for inciting violence and hate speech, and Christianity is outlawed.  It is the job of the Philosophical Constabulary to apprehend and re-educate anyone who continues to practise or preach Christianity.  It is chillingly realistic, and yet never so dark that you lose sight of the light.  And the characters—especially Marcus and Lee—absolutely grabbed me.  It tackles situations and questions that every Christian needs to consider, and—oh, my goodness—if I don’t stop now I’ll end up writing a review all over again!


The Sweetest Rain and Castles in the Clouds (Flowers of Eden series) – Myra Johnson

the-sweetest-rainCastles in the CloudsThis is a sweet series set in the Depression era that’s perfect for someone who’s looking for a read that’s engaging, but not intense.  The bonus is that the setting is an uncommon one, and captured really well.  I’m not sure when the third in the series is due to release, but I’m really looking forward to reading it when it does!



Dr. Horatio and the Six-Toed Cat, The Most Illegal Goose Creek Parade, Renovating the Richardsons, The Room with the Second-Best View, and A Goose Creek Christmas (Tales from the Goose Creek B&B) – Virginia Smith

Six-Toed CatIllegal Goose Creek ParadeRenovating the RichardsonsRoom with the second best viewsmith-goose-creek-christmas




Somehow I’ve managed to go from the most intense series to the least intense series here (totally by accident, I promise!)  This is a fun series set in the small Kentucky town of Goose Creek, with the almost-retired Al Richardson and his wife Millie as the central characters.  It’s a thoroughly engaging read if you’re after something light-hearted but real—full of the sort of quirky characters, small town issues, and everyday dramas that make life interesting.  You can find my reviews for the last three books in the series below:

Renovating the Richardsons
The Room with the Second-Best View
A Goose Creek Christmas


Ordinary SnowflakesJennifer Rodewald

*sigh*  I love this novella.  I love the cover, I love the characters, I love the story… you get the idea.  Technically this is a Christmas novella, but don’t let that stop you from picking it up at any other time of the year.  It’s a heart-melting read whenever you choose to read it.  And it really deserves more reviews than it currently has!  You can read my review here.




* Added five minutes after I originally posted this post… 🙄

The Thorn HealerPepper Basham

If you love romance and you haven’t discovered Pepper Basham’s books you’re missing out. Big time.  The Thorn Healer is the third book in her Penned in Time series, and the hero, August, is an absolute keeper!  As in, he’s mine… 😉

You can read my review here.




Better TogetherKimberly Stuart

Kimberly Stuart was a new author for me in 2016, but she shot straight to my list of ‘check-out-the-backlist-posthaste’ authors!  I love the way she handles the ups and downs of marriage and motherhood with humour, even in the midst of tackling some serious and sensitive subjects.  It’s like the best of chick lit and women’s fiction all rolled into one.  You can read my full review here.



If you want to check out some more underrated/hidden gems, why not check out Carrie’s list over at Reading is My Superpower.  It’s all her fault I had to add to my list after I’d already posted! 😄

So, what about you?  Have you read any of these books?  Have you discovered a hidden gem or underrated book you’d like to share with me?

Happy reading 🙂

About Fiction Aficionado

Homeschooling mum, word lover, reader extraordinaire, and follower of Christ
This entry was posted in Christian Fiction, Christian Romance, Contemporary Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Romance, Speculative Fiction, Top Ten Tuesday and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Top Ten Tuesday – Hidden Gems and Underrated Books I Read in 2016

  1. Great list. I haven’t read any books by Pepper, but I have my eye on her books. I need to put her at the top of my TBR pile, yes it’s a pile! haha

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Myra Johnson says:

    Really, really appreciate the shout out about my Flowers of Eden series! Yes, there will be a book 3, Rose’s story, and it should be out sometime this spring!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ronie says:

    You are so awesome to champion titles that aren’t getting a lot of exposure! Thank you so much for including Abiassa’s Fire series in this list. You RAWK!!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Lol! You and Carrie have some of the same ones ❤


  5. RobbyeFaye says:

    Thanks for this list! Some I’ve read, most I haven’t. Can’t wait to read them!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I can never tell you enough how much I love your thoughts on Haven Seekers and how much I appreciate your bringing more visibility to the series. Thank you so much! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Beth Erin says:

    I’ve read Myra, Jennifer, and Pepper’s books and Kelli’s are on my tbr!


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