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Daily Deals: Alpha shifters, scandalous kisses, and paranormal investigations

Daily Deals: Alpha shifters, scandalous kisses, and paranormal investigations

Charming The Alpha (Werewolf Romance) by Liliana RhodesCharming the Alpha by Liliana Rhodes. $ .99

From the Jacket Copy:

From New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Liliana Rhodes

(Re-edited on Oct. 10, 2014)

Hannah Crane just graduated college, lives at home with her mom, and has no idea what to do with her life. One night while visiting her grandmother, she’s startled by a wolf and everything changes.

In the forest investigating a recent rash of murders and missing shifters, werewolf Alpha Caleb Overstreet doesn’t expect to run into a human, let alone a witch. Especially not one whose scent tells him she is his other half…or is she?

As the secrets of her ancestry are revealed, Caleb and Hannah are unable to stay away from each other and Hannah finds herself in danger. A rival pack believes her to be at the center of a curse that would enable them to control other shifters. But is Hannah the wolf charmer they believe her to be? Or is she really Caleb’s fated mate?

Book 1: Charming The Alpha
Book 2: Resisting The Alpha
Book 3: Needing the Alpha
All three books are available in the Crane Curse Trilogy Boxed Set

The three star reviews say short, sweet, and predictable.

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The Scandal in Kissing an Heir (At the Kingsborough Ball Series #2) by Sophie BarnesThe Scandal in Kissing an Heir by Sophie Barnes. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

He is the next Marquess of Wolvington . . .

She is a lady with nothing but beauty and wits . . .

Together they share a forbidden kiss .

Lady Rebecca is determined to find a husband on her own terms, rather than marry any of the aging suitors her greedy aunt and uncle foist upon her. Her chance comes at the Kingsborough Ball, where she meets several potential grooms . . . yet no one compares to the dangerously handsome Daniel Neville.

Notorious rake and heir to the Marquess of Wolvington, Daniel Neville is in need of a bride, but finding a lady who’s willing to accept his past is an entirely different matter. When he spies a stunning woman across the ballroom, Daniel believes he’s found her . . . until scandal erupts around them. How can he convince Rebecca to take a chance on him . . . and on the love that could be theirs forever after?

Lots of sex makes up for a flat plot and a rather unbelieving suspense plot.

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The Taken (Celestial Blues Series #1) by Vicki PetterssonThe Taken (Celestial Blues Series #1) by Vicki Pettersson. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Griffin Shaw used to be a PI, but that was back when gumshoes hoofed the streets . . . and he was still alive. Fifty years later, he’s an angel, but that doesn’t make him a saint. One small mistake has altered fate, and now he’s been dumped back onto the mortal mudflat to collect another soul—Katherine “Kit” Craig, a journalist whose latest investigation is about to get her clipped.

Bucking heavenly orders, Grif refuses to let the sable-haired siren come to harm. Besides, protecting her offers a chance to solve the mystery of his own unsolved murder—and dole out some overdue payback for the death of his beloved wife, Evie.

Joining forces, Kit and Grif’s search for answers leads beyond the blinding lights of the Strip into the dark heart of an evil conspiracy. But a ruthless killer determined to destroy them isn’t Grif’s biggest threat. His growing attraction to Kit could cost them both their lives, along with the answer to the haunting question of his long afterlife . . .

The Taken: Celestial Blues
The Lost: Celestial Blues Book Two
The Given: Celestial Blues: Book Three

I’m intrigued by these MadMen-esque covers. I read a number of three star reviews because I’m tempted to buy this. It’s old school detective with an overlay of angels but the afterlife isn’t what you’d expect. The reviews say some parts are slow (particularly as the book gets bogged down in boring details of here Kit gets her hair done and what kind of manicure she has) and that it takes a while for the mystery to boot up and there are a lot of plot threads left dangling at the end. I don’t know.

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A Replacement Life: A Novel by Boris FishmanA Replacement Life by Boris Fishman. $ 1.99.

From the Jacket Copy:

A singularly talented writer makes his literary debut with this provocative, soulful, and sometimes hilarious story of a failed journalist asked to do the unthinkable: forge Holocaust-restitution claims for old Russian Jews in Brooklyn, New York.

Yevgeny Gelman, grandfather of Slava Gelman, ”didn’t suffer in the exact way” he needs to have suffered to qualify for the reparations the German government has been paying out to Holocaust survivors. But suffer he has—as a Jew in the war, as a second-class citizen in the USSR, as an immigrant in America. So? Isn’t his grandson a ”writer”?

High-minded Slava wants to put all this immigrant-scraping behind him. Only the American dream is not panning out for him: Century, the legendary magazine where he works as a researcher, wants nothing greater from him. Slava wants to be a correct, blameless American—but he wants to be a lionized writer even more.

Slava’s turn as the Forger of South Brooklyn teaches him that not every fact is a truth and not every lie a falsehood. It takes more than law-abiding to become an American; it takes the same self-reinvention at which his people excel. Intoxicated and unmoored by his inventions, Slava risks exposure. Cornered, he commits an irrevocable act that finally grants him a sense of home in America—but not before collecting a lasting price from his family.

A Replacement Life is a dark, moving, and beautifully written novel about family, honor, and justice.

This was a really thoughtful three star review of the book.

Ultimately, this was a 3.5 star book for me, that just wasn’t consistently enjoyable enough to warrant being rounded up to 4 stars. There are wonderful descriptive vignettes of individuals — especially memorable was the woman whose torso is equated to a Soviet high-rise building, “stuffed beyond capacity” — and anyone who has spent time in the far reaches of Brooklyn will chuckle at the way Fishman has nailed the sense of place. But the scenes set at Century, the magazine at which Slava toils, feel strangely bloodless: he’s ambitious, but can’t seem to get his act together, and at the same time, Fishman never made either Slava’s writing ambitions or his feelings for Adrianna, the thoroughly Americanized LA Jewish woman from work, feel very convincing. That was all rather two-dimensional.  

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First Page: Where the Wind Settles – YA (lgbt)

First Page: Where the Wind Settles – YA (lgbt)

Welcome to First Page Saturday. Individual authors anonymously send a first page read and critiqued by the Dear Author community of authors, readers and industry others. Anyone is welcome to comment. You may comment anonymously. You can submit your own First Page using this form.

Chinook appeared one day behind one of the library info desks in a flurry of color.
Her real name was Jane, as one of the older librarians pointed out when she gave her the codes to the computer system, but her name tag, in warm, sprawling block letters read “CHINOOK”. The name alone kind of buoyed my imagination. It smacked of adventure, and she looked like it, too.

I watched her through the narrow gap between a row of books and the shelf above them, until she reached for her coat and pack of cigarettes and headed off towards the elevators. Even then, that first day, I thought she’d left a strange hole in the fabric of space-time around that desk. I squinted at it; and for a second or so I thought I could see its flickering edges, but then I blinked and it was gone.

I padded over into the dictionary aisle. They were heavy tomes that smelled of decaying paper you could burrow yourself into like a cave. Sitting Indian-style on the grayish green carpet, I started pouring over the infinite columns of words. I remember thinking how improbable a thing language was, caressing the print with my fingertip, word for word down the long list.

I couldn’t find it in the Longman, which swept straight from China, chinchilla and chinless to chinos and chintz. The Merriam-Webster was heavier, beautifully bound, and I grunted under its weight when I pulled it onto my lap. I loved the fluttery thin paper, butterfly wings with intricate markings – all those beautiful unfamiliar words like tiny flowers or poems: chinoiserie, chinoline, chinone, chinook.

My fingers rested on the entry as I copied it down into one of my notebooks. Then I compared it with the Chambers and the humongous Oxford English Dictionary (at this point it was a little gratuitous, I admit). By the time I was done, my notes extended over 3 pages, and they boiled down to two definitions:

1. A member of an American Indian people in the pacific north-west
2. A warm spring wind

A warm spring wind, I whispered to myself and then quickly looked around in case anyone had heard – but I was still alone in the aisle.

I stuffed the dictionaries back into the their shelves and pocketed my notebook. It was an old-fashioned one, paper instead of a screen. Sometimes, I had the energy to pretend to myself that this made me more sophisticated than others, that it hearkened back to a different time, that real observations, thoughts, ideas could only be captured by hand, but most days I was realistic enough to admit that the main factor in my loyalty to paper was money.
Ironic, that. Paper money, get it?


There are a few things you should probably know about me, before I go on. That just makes it easier for all of us, and you won’t have to wonder whether I’m trying to sound mysterious or speak in metaphor or something later on. Spoilers: I’m not.

The first thing is that I haven’t said more than a few words to anyone since my mom died six years go.

The second thing is that I am a collector, and an investigator.

The third thing is that I can turn myself invisible.