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Daily Deals: A Sarah Mayberry freebie; two YAs; and a reunited...

The Unexpected Wedding Guest (The Wedding Season)  by Aimee Carson(Harlequin KISS)The Unexpected Wedding Guest by Aimee Carson. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

“Surprised to see me?”

Getting caught in her wedding dress by her drop-dead-gorgeous ex-husband is Reese Michael’s worst nightmare. Especially when her perfect-on-paper fiancé then cancels their wedding!

Reese has spent years trying to forget how her marriage to Mason Hicks crashed and burned—yes, their chemistry was incredible, but a girl can’t live on lust alone! And what’s a jilted bride supposed to do when the one man she could never forget is back in her life, as irresistible as ever? Mason might be her own personal brand of Kryptonite, but surely life is meant to be lived a little dangerously…?

Look out for the second book in The Wedding Season quartet, Girl Least Likely to Marry

This three star review on Amazon was great. It detailed the good parts (sexual tension and attraction between the characters) and the flaws (lack of detail about why the couple is going to last now).

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A Monster Calls  by Patrick NessA Monster Calls by Patrick Ness. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting— he’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments. The monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd— whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself— Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.

This was reviewed by Janine who gave it a C+:

As mentioned before, I like this story but did not love it. I liked the imaginative way that reality and fantasy were woven together and I especially liked the way the theme of dealing with the possibility of a loved one’s death was tackled head on. I liked the realism of Conor’s reactions, the way he hated the special treatment he got from authority figures, for example, and I loved the last cathartic fifth or so of the book.

But on the whole, I didn’t love the book, and here are the reasons why. First, I am an adult who enjoys a lot of YA, but this book read younger than most of the YA I read. I think that may have been a combination of the short and simple sentences and some of Conor’s thought processes. There was also a timeless quality to the story which is something I often find appealing but one downside was that we never see Conor doing the things boys his age do, like playing videogames or listening to his ipod.

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Shut Out  by Kody KeplingerShut Out by Kody Keplinger. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Most high school sports teams have rivalries with other schools. At Hamilton High, it’s a civil war: the football team versus the soccer team. And for her part,Lissa is sick of it. Her quarterback boyfriend, Randy, is always ditching her to go pick a fight with the soccer team or to prank their locker room. And on three separate occasions Randy’s car has been egged while he and Lissa were inside, making out. She is done competing with a bunch of sweaty boys for her own boyfriend’s attention.

Lissa decides to end the rivalry once and for all: She and the other players’ girlfriends go on a hookup strike. The boys won’t get any action from them until the football and soccer teams make peace. What they don’t count on is a new sort of rivalry: an impossible girls-against-boys showdown that hinges on who will cave to their libidos first. And Lissa never sees her own sexual tension with the leader of the boys, Cash Sterling, coming.

This YA battle of the sexes was given a C by Jia.


Based on your previous novel, I expected sex positivity and I wasn’t disappointed. All flavors of female sexuality were portrayed here — from the teen girl who likes sex without commitment to the virgin who’s not ready yet. I definitely liked that the double standards applied to girls and boys were addressed: a guy who sleeps with lots of girls is a stud; a girl who sleeps around is a slut. The message here being that no one way is correct other than what’s right for you. There is no “normal.”

On the other hand, I thought that message was presented with all the subtlety of an anvil. It was almost as if this book couldn’t decide if it wanted to be an issue book or a fun battle of the sexes. I thought this was particularly obvious in the second half of the novel in which the heroine, Lissa, starts acting in ways that don’t really fit with how her character was portrayed in the beginning. I like character evolution, but I need a little more motivation to go on.



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Her Favorite Temptation  by Sarah MayberryHer Favorite Temptation by Sarah Mayberry. $ Free.

From the Jacket Copy:

Two people facing crossroads in their lives discover friendship and love in this touching novella by fan favorite Harlequin Superromance author Sarah Mayberry.

Leah Mathews has always been the good sister, the favored one who could do no wrong. But as her thirtieth birthday looms, she’s ready to step out of her parents’ shadow and make changes in her life. Shes even more inspired by the sexy musician who moves in next door and his seize-the-day attitude. And tempted to take comfort in his arms…

Will Jones is facing the prospect of losing the career he loves—and possibly his life—to a sudden illness. When he meets Leah, he feels a powerful connection to her, and flirting with a smart, beautiful woman seems like the perfect way to spend the weeks before his risky operation.

But as their relationship heats up, Leah still doesn’t know the truth about Will’s situation. Will their bond be strong enough to face the challenges yet to come?

Read about Leah’s sister in Sarah Mayberry’s next contemporary romance from Harlequin Superromance, Her Favorite Rival.

A free Sarah Mayberry? May be the best deal all year. Mayberry writes smart and relatively normal characters who experience the very magical experience of falling in love. I realized a few weeks ago, after reading my upteenth drama laden book featuring a character with a hideous backstory that there is real skill in bringing to life individuals who haven’t been abused or traumatized in some way. Although, Will Jones in this book does face a life threatening illness…

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Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Bethany
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 14:04:19

    Oh, Sarah Mayberry. Love, love, LOVE. I’ve never read a book of hers that I didn’t absolutely adore.

  2. Gisele Pinheiro
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 14:14:10

    Oh… Sarah’s book is not free at the Amazon in Brasil. :(

  3. Darlynne
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 14:21:37

    I loved A Monster Calls and had no real expectation that I would. I agree with Janine’s review in several ways, and yet can still recall so vividly the reality of the monster and how things were revealed. It was very powerful.

  4. library addict
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 14:22:59

    What is up with Harlequin’s website? Her Favorite Temptation did not show up at all when I searched by author or title. Nor when I searched by author & title (at least not on first two pages). I finally clicked on the sidebar to display the Superromances and found it that way.

  5. kathybaug
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 14:40:24

    I am seriously pissed about the Mayberry ebook. Barnes and Noble had it for purchase on July 28 for $2.99 and now Harlequin puts it on for free 4 days later????

    I love Sarah Mayberry, but this behavior is causing me to re-think purchasing Harlequin books when they are first available to me. I have many things to read and don’t really have to have any book when it first comes out. This goes for other publishers, too. Some of them have dropped prices of first-run ebooks within a month of their release date.
    That’s very annoying.

  6. Janine
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 14:51:38

    @Darlynne: Most of the people who commented on my review said they loved A Monster Calls.

  7. cleo
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 14:54:06

    A free Sarah Mayberry? Woo Hoo! I just downloaded it. I’m hoping I’ll like it better than the novella I just started reading as my reward for a busy couple of days. (Picking out the right book for the right occasion is soooo tricky, especially reward books. I want my reward reads to be, well, rewarding, not annoying)

  8. alicet
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 15:59:55

    Thank you so much for the info on the free Sarah Mayberry book. I love all her books and I can’t wait to read this. This is so awesome- I thought I would have to wait longer for another book from her.

  9. Little Red
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 16:12:36

    The Mayberry book sounds lovely. I’ll download it as soon as I get home.

  10. Sarah Mayberry
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 17:25:10

  11. Sarah Mayberry
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 17:29:07

    @kathybaug: Let me try that again! Note to self, typing first thing in the morning is not my forte. Kathy, if you’d like to email me via the contact button on my website, I will get you a copy of the sequel to my novella, Her Favorite Rival, as a make-up for you having bought the free book. I did see that Her Favorite Temptation had a price on it for about three days, and wondered how many people would buy and then feel disgruntled in literally 3 days. Not a great marketing plan, unfortunately, but totally out of my hands. I did try to let people know it would be free from August 1, but the internet is full of so many voices! I’m really sorry you feel ripped off, but please let me do what I can to ease that feeling!

  12. Sarah Mayberry
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 17:41:54

    Also, I wanted to mention that Her Favorite Rival is available free to Australian and New Zealand readers as well as US and Canadian. I’m not sure what the situation is in the UK, I’m sorry. There will be links to the Australian/NZ version on my blog in about ten minutes time, but in the meantime it’s worth noting that the Australian title has a “u” in the world “‘favourite” if anyone is searching for it. Obviously, this reflects Australian spelling, but does make the book harder to find…Sigh.

  13. Rosie
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 18:00:33

    I downloaded Her Favorite Temptation first thing this morning. I would’ve gladly paid for it, but free is icing on the cake. I always love having a new book by Sarah Mayberry to read when the contemporary mood hits me!

  14. Kaetrin
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 19:52:38

    Just downloaded the Mayberry from Kobo for free here in Australia. Yippee! For Aussies searching, don’t forget they spelled it right down here – Her Favourite Temptation. :P

  15. Iola
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 20:54:46

    Yes! Just downloaded the Sarah Mayberry from New Zealand – as Sarah said, I had to search for it because it’s Favourite Temptation, not favourite! The link is

  16. kathybaug
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 21:10:07

    @sarahmayberry: Wow, I never expected to have you respond to my little rant! I appreciate it very much and I have sent you an email via your website. I want to make sure everyone that is reading this site knows that I don’t have any ill-will toward you for the quick price drop. I know it’s Harlequin’s doing. I just have to wonder at all publishers’ decisions in the last several years. Agency pricing has made me testy and I am really looking forward to getting the refund the settlement has ordered.

    Anyway, I love your stories and can’t wait to read more in the future.

    ps I used a different email address on your website than at Dear Author, but it’s still me. I used the mail the website suggested. But either address will get to me.

  17. Katie
    Aug 01, 2013 @ 21:20:01

    The Kobo link for Her Favorite Temptation does not link to a free ebook–it is still listed as $2.99 when viewed in the U.S. I downloaded it from Sony instead.

  18. susan
    Aug 02, 2013 @ 12:06:59

    I read Her Favorite Temptation last night and I absolutely loved it. Can’t wait for Her Favorite Rival. I have a question–do Will and Leah show up in that book?

  19. Laurie Evans
    Aug 02, 2013 @ 13:28:19

    Downloaded the Mayberry book. I do love her characters for how “normal” they are. Slowly making my way through her books…Love how she concentrates mostly on the characters and their romance; not a lot of secondary characters (at least in the books I’ve read so far.) Not a lot of angst from other people. Just really great love stories. *sighs*

  20. Mishel
    Aug 02, 2013 @ 14:10:43


    Powerful is an excellent description. I really enjoyed A Monster Calls! I do agree that the book read a bit younger than I anticipated.

  21. meanne
    Aug 03, 2013 @ 08:33:19

    Just pulled an all-nighter to finish Her Favorite Temptation. It was fantastic! Thank you for this freebie. Am looking forward to Her Favorite Rival. The excerpt was tantalizingly good…

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