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Daily Deals: Creepy thriller, Hero in action, and 1950s Hollywood

Daily Deals: Creepy thriller, Hero in action, and 1950s Hollywood

Creep by Jennifer HillierCreep by Jennifer Hillier. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Pulsing with the dark obsession of Radiohead’s song “Creep,” this taut thriller—Jennifer Hillier’s superb debut—rockets from its seductive opening to a heartpounding climax not easily forgotten.

If he can’t have her . . .

Dr. Sheila Tao is a professor of psychology. An expert in human behavior. And when she began an affair with sexy, charming graduate student Ethan Wolfe, she knew she was playing with fire. Consumed by lust when they were together, riddled with guilt when they weren’t, she knows the three-month fling with her teaching assistant has to end. After all, she’s finally engaged to a kind and loving investment banker who adores her, and she’s taking control of her life. But when she attempts to end the affair, Ethan Wolfe won’t let her walk away.

. . . no one else can.

Ethan has plans for Sheila, plans that involve posting a sex video that would surely get her fired and destroy her prestigious career. Plans to make her pay for rejecting him. And as she attempts to counter his every threatening move without her colleagues or her fiancé discovering her most intimate secrets, a shattering crime rocks Puget Sound State University: a female student, a star athlete, is found stabbed to death. Someone is raising the stakes of violence, sex, and blackmail . . . and before she knows it, Sheila is caught in a terrifying cat-and-mouse game with the lover she couldn’t resist—who is now the monster who won’t let her go.

Library Journal writes “Although there are some rough spots in this debut thriller—the subplot about a murdered student is clunky, Sheila’s sex addiction seems mostly unnecessary, and the killer attacks the private investigator with a knife but conveniently misses any major arteries—first novelist Hillier succeeds in building suspense and piling up nail-biting twists and turns for the reader. The ending indicates a possible sequel, but even if Sheila Tao doesn’t return, Hillier will likely have best sellers in the future thanks to her suspenseful plotting and solid character development. “

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Brick Lane by Monica AliBrick Lane by Monica Ali. $ 1.99 at AMZN | Apple

From the Jacket Copy:

“A book you won’t be able to put down. A Bangladeshi immigrant in London is torn between the kind, tedious older husband with whom she has an arranged marriage (and children) and the fiery political activist she lusts after. A novel that’s multi-continental, richly detailed and elegantly crafted.” –Curtis Sittenfeld, author of Sisterland

After an arranged marriage to Chanu, a man twenty years older, Nazneen is taken to London, leaving her home and heart in the Bangladeshi village where she was born. Her new world is full of mysteries. How can she cross the road without being hit by a car (an operation akin to dodging raindrops in the monsoon)? What is the secret of her bullying neighbor Mrs. Islam? What is a Hell’s Angel? And how must she comfort the naïve and disillusioned Chanu? ?

As a good Muslim girl, Nazneen struggles to not question why things happen. She submits, as she must, to Fate and devotes herself to her husband and daughters. Yet to her amazement, she begins an affair with a handsome young radical, and her erotic awakening throws her old certainties into chaos.

Monica Ali’s splendid novel is about journeys both external and internal, where the marvellous and the terrifying spiral together.

2003 Discover Award Winner, Fiction

BN reviews “Though comparisons have drawn between Ali and Zadie Smith, a better comparison might be made between this talented newcomer and the work of Amy Tan, who so deftly portrays the immigrant experience with empathy and joy.”

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Protector by Gennita Low.Protector by Gennita Low. $ Free AMZN | Apple

From the Jacket Copy:

The start of a thrilling new trilogy featuring Jazz, a Navy SEAL who must trust a mysterious agent sent to rescue him.

Navy SEAL Jazz Zeringue was taken into custody after a covert mission went awry. He had no doubts he’d be rescued, but he was certainly surprised when his saviour turns out to be the mysterious and beautiful agent Vivi Verreau. It’s obvious Vivi doesn’t like him, doesn’t trust him, but they’ll have to work together if they’re to escape from enemy territory alive.

There were a few reviews that mentioned the post developmental editing in the book wasn’t up to par. I thought this was trad published at one time but it appears self published now. The critical reviews point to a fairly passive emotional heroine and a “whipped” hero.

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Die a Little by Megan Abbott.Die a Little by Megan Abbott. $ 1.99 AMZN | Apple.

From the Jacket Copy:

By the author of Dare Me and The End of Everything

Femmes fatales. Obsessive love. Double crosses. How does a respectable young woman fall into Los Angeles’s hard-boiled underworld?

Shadow-dodging through the glamorous world of 1950s Hollywood and its seedy flip side, Megan Abbott’s debut, Die a Little, is a gem of the darkest hue. This ingenious twist on a classic noir tale tells the story of Lora King, a schoolteacher, and her brother Bill, a junior investigator with the district attorney’s office. Lora’s comfortable, suburban life is jarringly disrupted when Bill falls in love with a mysterious young woman named Alice Steele, a Hollywood wardrobe assistant with a murky past.

Made sisters by marriage but not by choice, the bond between Lora and Alice is marred by envy and mistrust. Spurred on by inconsistencies in Alice’s personal history and possibly jealous of Alice’s hold on her brother, Lora finds herself lured into the dark alleys and mean streets of seamy Los Angeles. Assuming the role of amateur detective, she uncovers a shadowy world of drugs, prostitution, and ultimately, murder.

Lora’s fascination with Alice’s “sins” increases in direct proportion to the escalation of her own relationship with Mike Standish, a charmingly amoral press agent who appears to know more about his old friend Alice than he reveals. The deeper Lora digs to uncover Alice’s secrets, the more her own life begins to resemble Alice’s sinister past—and present.

Steeped in atmospheric suspense and voyeuristic appeal, Die a Little shines as a dark star among Hollywood lights.

Kirkus “Even though readers may be reminded of a dozen previous books or films, Abbott makes sure they won’tmistake this one for any but her own. In these tasty noir stylings, you can almost smell the smoke and hear the clinking of ice cubes”

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Daily Deals: Gargoyles, hackers, and whimsical touching children’s book

Daily Deals: Gargoyles, hackers, and whimsical touching children’s book

Heart of Stone by Christine WarrenHeart of Stone by Christine Warren. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

From bestselling author Christine Warren comes a thrilling new series about

a young woman caught between a rock and a hard place—between gargoyles and demons…

Ella Harrow is trying to carve out a normal life for herself. Well, as normal as an art geek with psychic abilities can hope for. As museum docent and gift-shop manager, Ella is able to keep her distance from people—and her powers in check—while surrounding herself with the artifacts she loves. But how on earth is she supposed to act normal when a thousand-year-old statue on the museum’s terrace suddenly comes to life?

HEART OF STONE

Not your ordinary gargoyle, Kees has been asleep for eons, waiting for a portent of evil to wake him from his slumber. Kees isn’t a vision; he’s a bat-winged guardian created to protect the world from the seven demons of the Dark. Somehow, Ella triggered his reawakening. Maybe the demons have been unleashed? Maybe his heart is finally ready to be chiseled open? The fate of the world isn’t carved in stone… yet.

“Warren takes readers for a wild ride.”

PW writes “he sexual attraction between Kees and Ella is palpable, and readers will love watching the logical Kees fight the concept of emotions as Ella blossoms from a guilt-laden hermit into a gutsy heroine. Despite some repetition, this is a clever, wry tale that bodes well for future installments.”

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No One Lives Twice by Julie MoffettNo One Lives Twice by Julie Moffett. $ .99

From the Jacket Copy:

‘m Lexi Carmichael, geek extraordinaire. I spend my days stopping computer hackers at the National Security Agency. My nights? Those I spend avoiding my mother and eating cereal for dinner. Even though I work for a top-secret agency, I’ve never been in an exciting car chase, sipped a stirred (not shaken) martini, or shot a poison dart from an umbrella.

Until today, that is, when two gun-toting thugs popped up in my life and my best friend disappeared. So, I’ve enlisted the help of the Zimmerman twins—the reclusive architects of America’s most sensitive electronic networks—to help me navigate a bewildering maze of leads to find her.

Along the way, my path collides with a sexy government agent and a rich, handsome lawyer, both of whom seem to have the hots for me. Hacking, espionage, sexy spy-men—it’s a geek girl’s dream come true. If it weren’t for those gun-toting thugs…

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Howl's Moving Castle (Howl's Castle Series #1) by Diana Wynne JonesHowl’s Moving Castle (Howl’s Castle Series #1) by Diana Wynne Jones. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Sophie has the great misfortune of being the eldest of three daughters, destined to fail miserably should she ever leave home to seek her fate. But when she unwittingly attracts the ire of the Witch of the Waste, Sophie finds herself under a horrid spell that transforms her into an old lady. Her only chance at breaking it lies in the ever-moving castle in the hills: the Wizard Howl’s castle. To untangle the enchantment, Sophie must handle the heartless Howl, strike a bargain with a fire demon, and meet the Witch of the Waste head-on. Along the way, she discovers that there’s far more to Howl—and herself—than first meets the eye.

Eldest of three sisters in a land where it is considered to be a misfortune, Sophie is resigned to her fate as a hat shop apprentice until a witch turns her into an old woman and she finds herself in the castle of the greatly feared wizard Howl.

I haven’t read this but I’ve watched the movie several times.

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Throne of Glass      By: Sarah J. MaasThrone of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom.

Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her… but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

This was marketed to reviewers as a teenage version of Game of Thrones. It has a love triangle, of course. But reviews indicate that the protagonist is very appealing and the fantasy world is not an all white cast.

There is a collection of three novellas in the Throne of Glass series that is priced at $2.99 as well.

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