Why don't you walk with me as I explore the Top 100 list at The Athenaeum ? You might find a gem that you have overlooked or maybe an old favourite that you want to read again.
Before we start our walk you might want to read up on the site we are going to visit. So I will just give you some numbers to chew on. The Athenaeum list 6759 works from 1538 authors, with 485 of those works available in eBook format - impressive or what ? In 2010 a total of 2.847.848 links where followed to stories archived at the site or externally at other sites. The 100 links most often followed in 2010 ? Well if you want to know ... follow me.
Normally I would work my way to the top and save the best bit for last, but lets be daring today! The 2010 Story of The Year is ..... (a long drum roll can be heard) ...."Denial" by Omega13. This is a loooong lesfic drama with a lot of angst, and I must admit that I never got through the story, probably because I found that it took to long to get to the LHEA ending. The core of the storyline is an attraction between Celeste and her brothers fiancée Amy. The story is very well rated at The Athemaeum.
As the fitness freaks among you will know walking down hill is much more taxing than the walk up hill, so lets make this a slow stroll down from The Story of The Year to number 4 "Dark Side of The Moon" by my favourite pen BadSquirrel. Who by the way seems to have her first published fic in the works ! If you are into the gender bending and BDSM stuff this is a story for you. It is well written, but to me - a bit over the top. Should the BDSM theme be something you are interested in exploring through other fic's, you can find a few stories listed at the "Listmania" page.
At spot number 11 you will find Fingersmith's new romance/drama "Critical" a well written story involving a restaurant owner, a food critic and an obsession that creates a bit of drama. It did remind me slightly of Creme Brulee's "Cooking on High" with a notorious chef that get's herself involved with "the help" and in a fight with a powerful man. I'm very fond of Creme Brulee's writing, but it seems that this pen no longer posts fic's on line - maybe someone know if Creme Brulee has published books under another name ??
My all time favourite fic "Rumors" by BadSquirrel came in 17 in 2010. This is much better than the 48th spot the story earned in 2009. Maybe some of you have followed my advice to look up this story ? If not - then put on your running shoes and go go go ... I have posted a review if you want an introduction to the storyline.
The short PWP "IMPOTENT or maybe not" by Gracelan Chase came in as number 18 with the story of how to cure writers block. If you want erotica with a romantic twist you can also look up Vertigo's "Caution: Under Construction" or MJ and Cephalgia's "Unlimited Sexual Favours".
Of cause Mavis Applewater also made it to the list in 2010. This time as number 20. "Finding My Way" is my favourite story from Mavis' pen. If you want a well put together romantic storyline do not miss this one - look up my review if you want an introduction. "Campus" from Anik LaChev will take you into a similar University setting, but you will have to be a bit nifty with the Wayback Machine to locate the story as it has been taken off line for publication. With a bit of editing (it's a very long read) it will make a great book.
If you have not read any of Weebod's stories I think that you ought to give "Conflict of Interests" a try. It holds a broad, well developed storyline, some interesting characters, and romance and angst in the right places. The story made it to place 24 on the Top 100. Should you fancy this pen do back up a few steps and look up number 6 on the list. Weebod's "The Player" is a romance mixed with a bit of field hockey .. you know hockey played on grass not ice.
I am getting a bit tired from walking down hill so I think I will take a break and leave you at place 30 with A.K.Naten's "Turning Tides" so you can go visit a business tycoon with a habit of playing games of dominance with the women she finds attractive. Look up my review if you want further introduction. Alex Tryst's "Adventures of a Super Dyke" has a somewhat similar theme, but the storyline is not quite my style.
Maybe I will pick up the Top 100 list later. In the meantime do explore on your own - the list hold links to several good reads.