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DAILY DEALS: Child Free, a Classic Reimagined, and an Upstairs/Downstairs Contemporary

DAILY DEALS: Child Free, a Classic Reimagined, and an Upstairs/Downstairs Contemporary

If I StayIf I Stay by Tamara Morgan. $ 0.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Ryan Lucas would rather be anywhere but Ransom Creek, Connecticut. After losing his high-adrenaline career as a Hollywood stunt driver, he’s had to tuck his tail between his legs and take up employment as a chauffeur for the Montgomerys, a wealthy hotelier family.

Amy Sanders has returned home to Ransom Creek to take over her mother’s former position as nanny to the Montgomerys–bringing her close to dashing Jake Montgomery once again. She grew up with a major crush on Jake, and it’s not easy to leave those feelings behind, even though her friendship with the hard-edged family chauffeur, Ryan, has a sizzling undercurrent of undeniable attraction.

Amy’s determined to prove to Ryan that life at Montgomery Manor isn’t all bad, but each time they draw closer Jake swoops in. Amy is torn between two men–and two worlds. And Ryan is rapidly coming to learn that if he wants to make Amy his, he’ll have to prove to her that life downstairs can be everything they both want.

This book is the start to my Montgomery Manor series, which continues in August with book two. If I Stay is a modern-day upstairs/downstairs tale that features a romance between the nanny and the chauffeur. It’s got hints of Downton Abbey and Sabrina, but is also very much a romantic comedy. Although the blurb hints at a strong triangle, it’s really more of a friends to lovers story.
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Night of Pleasure by Delilah MervelleNight of Pleasure by Delilah Mervelle. $ .99

From the Jacket Copy:

Derek Charles Holbrook, Viscount Banfield, knew his fate since he was seventeen when his father announced his union to the beautiful but mysterious American girl by the name of Miss Grey.
To protect the troubled estate, Derek submits to his father’s wishes, not realizing he’s about to entangle himself in a hell of a lot more than marriage.

Miss Clementine Henrietta Grey may be worth millions, but not a single coin has ever bought her a smidge of happiness. When she marries the charismatic and dashing Viscount Banfield, whose only strife in life appears to be the uneven seams in his coat, she finds that siring the heir he wants requires far more than her heart is prepared to give.

Unable to seduce his overly-serious and reluctant wife, Derek realizes his dreams of creating a loving family has turned into a nightmare. But with the unexpected assistance of a retired courtesan and her outrageous school, Derek and Clementine discover that passion is a language spoken not just from the body, but from the mind, heart and soul.

The middling reviews felt that Clementine was a very challenging heroine and that her hangups were too easily resolved at the end of the book. But the plot and emotional conflicts sound different enough to be interesting.
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Fuzzy Nation by John ScalziFuzzy Nation by John Scalzi. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Jack Holloway works alone, for reasons he doesn’t care to talk about. Hundreds of miles from ZaraCorp’s headquarters on planet, 178 light-years from the corporation’s headquarters on Earth, Jack is content as an independent contractor, prospecting and surveying at his own pace. As for his past, that’s not up for discussion.

Then, in the wake of an accidental cliff collapse, Jack discovers a seam of unimaginably valuable jewels, to which he manages to lay legal claim just as ZaraCorp is cancelling their contract with him for his part in causing the collapse. Briefly in the catbird seat, legally speaking, Jack pressures ZaraCorp into recognizing his claim, and cuts them in as partners to help extract the wealth.

But there’s another wrinkle to ZaraCorp’s relationship with the planet Zarathustra. Their entire legal right to exploit the verdant Earth-like planet, the basis of the wealth they derive from extracting its resources, is based on being able to certify to the authorities on Earth that Zarathustra is home to no sentient species.

Then a small furry biped—trusting, appealing, and ridiculously cute—shows up at Jack’s outback home. Followed by its family. As it dawns on Jack that despite their stature, these are people, he begins to suspect that ZaraCorp’s claim to a planet’s worth of wealth is very flimsy indeed…and that ZaraCorp may stop at nothing to eliminate the “fuzzys” before their existence becomes more widely known.

This is a “reboot” of “Little Fuzzy” by H. Beam Piper. (I’ve never read/heard of the original) One reviewer said that despite the complicated plot it wasn’t a good read for hard core SFF. Others said it was a worthwhile update to a classic.
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Heart Like Mine by Amy HatvanyHeart Like Mine by Amy Hatvany. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Thirty-six-year-old Grace McAllister never longed for children. But when she meets Victor Hansen, a handsome, charismatic divorced restaurateur who is father to Max and Ava, Grace decides that, for the right man, she could learn to be an excellent part-time stepmom. After all, the kids live with their mother, Kelli. How hard could it be?

At thirteen, Ava Hansen is mature beyond her years. Since her parents’ divorce, she has been taking care of her emotionally unstable mother and her little brother—she pays the bills, does the laundry, and never complains because she loves her mama more than anyone. And while her father’s new girlfriend is nice enough, Ava still holds out hope that her parents will get back together and that they’ll be a family again. But only days after Victor and Grace get engaged, Kelli dies suddenly under mysterious circumstances—and soon, Grace and Ava discover that there was much more to Kelli’s life than either ever knew.

Narrated by Grace and Ava in the present with flashbacks into Kelli’s troubled past, Heart Like Mine is a poignant, hopeful portrait of womanhood, love, and the challenges and joys of family life.

I’m pretty intrigued by this book. It’s told in the voices of three different women and from the reviews, there appears to be a happy ending. Although one reader felt that Victor should have been a better husband/father and that Grace makes a quick turnaround in her view toward parenting.
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Daily Deals: Stephen King, Prince Charming, and a fallen angel in search of redemption

Daily Deals: Stephen King, Prince Charming, and a fallen angel in...

The Green Mile: The Complete Serial Novel by Stephen KingThe Green Mile by Stephen King. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

The #1 New York Times bestselling dramatic serial novel and inspiration for the Oscar-nominated film of the same name starring Tom Hanks, the “literary event” (Entertainment Weekly) of The Green Mile is now available in its entirety.

When The Green Mile first appeared, serialized as one volume per month, Stephen King’s The Green Mile was an unprecedented publishing triumph: all six volumes ended up on the New York Times bestseller list—simultaneously—and delighted millions of fans the world over.

Welcome to Cold Mountain Penitentiary, home to the Depression-worn men of E Block. Convicted killers all, each awaits his turn to walk the Green Mile, keeping a date with “Old Sparky,” Cold Mountain’s electric chair. Prison guard Paul Edgecombe has seen his share of oddities in his years working the Mile. But he’s never seen anyone like John Coffey, a man with the body of a giant and the mind of a child, condemned for a crime terrifying in its violence and shocking in its depravity. In this place of ultimate retribution, Edgecombe is about to discover the terrible, wondrous truth about Coffey, a truth that will challenge his most cherished beliefs…and yours.

Likeable protagonist, lots of interlocking parts that come together but not as thrilling as other King novels.

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Charming by Elliott JamesCharming by Elliott James. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

John Charming isn’t your average Prince…

He comes from a line of Charmings — an illustrious family of dragon slayers, witch-finders and killers dating back to before the fall of Rome. Trained by a modern day version of the Knights Templar, monster hunters who have updated their methods from chain mail and crossbows to Kevlar and shotguns, John Charming was one of the best–until a curse made him one of the abominations the Knights were sworn to hunt.

That was a lifetime ago. Now, John tends bar under an assumed name in rural Virginia and leads a peaceful, quiet life. That is, until a vampire and a blonde walked into his bar…

CHARMING is the first novel in a new urban fantasy series which gives a new twist to the Prince Charming tale.

PW says it’s a solid but familiar tale “The blonde Valkyrie named Sig saves his life, and something about her convinces John to stay and help her band of racially stereotyped monster hunters—including a pot-smoking exterminator, an Episcopalian ex-priest, an immoral Naga software mogul, and an Eastern European psychic—clean out the local vampire hive in a plot that sometimes feels boilerplate but eventually takes a darker, more personal twist.”

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Covet by JR WardCovet by JR Ward. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Redemption isn’t a word Jim Heron knows much about—his specialty is revenge, and to him, sin is all relative. But everything changes when he becomes a fallen angel and is charge with saving the souls of seven people from the seven deadly sins. And failure is not an option. Vin DiPietro long ago sold his soul to his business, and he’s good with that — until fate intervenes in the form of a tough- talking, Harley-riding, self-professed savior. But then he meets a woman who will make him question his destiny, his sanity, and his heart—and he has to work with a fallen angel to win her over and redeem his own soul.

The final book in this series is due out in October. I read it for Jim and Sissy. I think ward is in love with the villain but I don’t find her as entertaining as I think I’m supposed.

(And when I say I read for Jim and Sissy, that’s exactly what I mean. I look for those passages and read those alone.)

These aren’t really romances, although there is a romance in each story, but more…entries in an epic angelic / demonic battle written in a very colloquial fashion.

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Good in Bed by Jennifer WeinerGood in Bed by Jennifer Weiner. $ 1.99.

From the Jacket Copy:

For twenty-eight years, things have been tripping along nicely for Cannie Shapiro. Sure, her mother has come charging out of the closet, and her father has long since dropped out of her world. But she loves her friends, her rat terrier, Nifkin, and her job as pop culture reporter for The Philadelphia Examiner. She’s even made a tenuous peace with her plus-size body.

But the day she opens up a national women’s magazine and sees the words “Loving a Larger Woman” above her ex-boyfriend’s byline, Cannie is plunged into misery…and the most amazing year of her life. From Philadelphia to Hollywood and back home again, she charts a new course for herself: mourning her losses, facing her past, and figuring out who she is and who she can become.

This is the book that catapulted Weiner to fame.

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