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Daily Deals: Mysteries and romances for Friday along with Harlequin Freebies

Codex      by     Lev GrossmanCodex by Lev Grossman. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

About to depart on his first vacation in years, Edward Wozny, a hot-shot young investment banker, is sent to help one of his firm’s most important and mysterious clients. When asked to uncrate and organize a personal library of rare books, Edward’s indignation turns to intrigue as he realizes that there may be a unique medieval codex hidden among the volumes, a treasure kept locked away for many years and for many reasons. As friends draw Edward into a peculiar and addictive computer game, his obsession deepens as he discovers surprising parallels between the game’s virtual reality and the mystery of the codex. An accomplished and entertaining thriller, Codex explores the mysterious power of books in the medieval and modern ages.

This book has wildly varying reviews and on Amazon, most of them are under 3 stars. I think a number of people were unhappy with the unresolved nature of the book. A bad ending can lead to unhappy readers.

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Lord Peter Views the Body  The Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries      By: Dorothy L. SayersLord Peter Views the Body by Dorothy Sayers. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Only Lord Peter has the wit to find the solution to these twelve baffling mysteries

Some aristocrats spend their lives shooting, but Lord Peter Wimsey is a hunter of a different kind: a bloodhound with a nose for murder. Before he became Britain’s most famous detective, Lord Peter contented himself with solving the crimes he came across by chance. In this volume of short stories, he confronts a stolen stomach, a man with copper fingers, and a deadly adventure at Ali Baba’s cave, among other conundrums. These mysteries tax not just his intellect, but his humor, knowledge of metallurgy, and taste for fine wines. It’s not easy being a gentleman sleuth, but Lord Peter is the man for the job.

This ebook features an illustrated biography of Dorothy L. Sayers including rare images from the Marion E. Wade Center at Wheaton College.

It’s Sayers.  Do I need to write anything here? Premier mystery writer. Excellent wordsmith. Dry wit.  Clever.

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Come Away With Me by Kristen Proby Come Away With Me by Kristen Proby. $ .99

From the Jacket Copy:

Being confronted on the beach by a sexy stranger wasn’t part of Natalie Conner’s plans for a peaceful morning taking photos. And why on earth would he think she’s taking pictures of him, anyway? Who is he? One thing’s for sure, he’s hot, and incredibly romantic, feeding Natalie’s wounded soul.

Luke Williams just wants the world to give him a break, so seeing yet another camera aimed at his face has him ready to pounce on the beauty behind the lens. When he finds out she has no idea who he is, he’s intrigued and more than a little tempted by her. Natalie has a body made for sex, a sassy mouth and Luke can’t get enough of her, but he’s not ready to tell her who he really his.

Natalie is a no nonsense girl who doesn’t do well with lies and secrets. What will happen to this new relationship when she discovers what Luke’s hiding?

I tried to read Proby’s book, Fight With Me, but I couldn’t get into it. I know a lot of readers love her and for .99 you can give her a try. I might even try this title to see if I was missing something in Fight with Me.


When You Give a Duke a Diamond  Jewels of the Ton      By: Shana GalenIf You Give a Duke a Diamond by Shana Galen. $ 1.99.

From the Jacket Copy:


William, the sixth Duke of Pelham, enjoys his punctual. securely structured life. Orderly and predictable-that’s the way he likes it. But he’s in the public eye, and the scandal sheets will make up anything to sell papers. When the gossips link him to Juliette, one of the most beautiful and celebrated courtesans in London, chaos doesn’t begin to describe what happens next…


Juliette is nicknamed the Duchess of Dalliance, and has the cream of the nobility at her beck and call. It’s seriously disruptive to have the duke who’s the biggest catch on the Marriage Mart scaring her other suitors away. Then she discovers William’s darkest secret and decides what he needs in his life is the kind of excitement only she can provide…

A few of Galen’s other books have been on sale such as Rogue Pirate’s Bride and Lord and Lady Spy. I haven’t read a book of hers and can’t attest to the quality or enjoyability. She gets very high marks on Goodreads for this particular book.

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The Other Side of Us Sarah MayberryThe Other Side of Us by Sarah Mayberry. $ Free at Amazon.

From the Jacket Copy:

The making of a good neighbor

The best thing between Oliver Barrett and Mackenzie Williams is a fence. Ever since Oliver’s new-neighbor gestures were met with unfriendly responses, he’s decided to keep his distance. After all, he’s in this seaside town to get his life on track again. That doesn’t include working hard to get on Mackenzie’s good side—no matter how intriguing she may be.

His intentions are put to the test, however, when his dog becomes infatuated with hers. The two crafty canines do their best to break down the barriers between the properties. And where the dogs go…well, the humans must follow! It doesn’t take long for a powerful attraction to build between Oliver and Mackenzie. They soon discover that the worst of first impressions can lead to the best possible outcomes….

I originally featured this freebie when it was a pre order.  It was only available at Amazon at this time.  It is part of the Try Harlequin giveaway where Harlequin offers one free book per series so you can get an idea of what the series is like.  You can see the all the lines and the freebies title here.

This was reviewed for us by Iola’s Christian Reads here.:

Mackenzie Williams was a producer on popular daytime soap, Time and Again, until a car accident left her in hospital with multiple injuries, then months of rehabilitation. She is now living in remote Flinders (on the Mornington Peninsula, about an hour south of Melbourne) with her dog, Mr Smith, while she recovers enough to return to work–if her job is still there.

Oliver Garrett has moved with his schnauzer, Strudel, from Sydney to Flinder, to escape from the ruins of his marriage. Strudel forms an immediate attachment with Mr Smith, the dog next door, which places Oliver in close proximity to Mackenzie. Even though she is rude and career-minding, and represents everything he dislikes in a woman. Or so he thinks. As they try and rebuild their smashed lives, their relationship develops, and both Mackenzie and Oliver find they have more in common than they initially thought.

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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. ms bookjunkie
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:07:20

    Sayers is always welcome! <3!

  2. Darlynne
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:24:09

    I read Lev Grossman’s book a while ago and can’t remember much about it. Not a bad experience, more of a what? one.

    In the irony department: B&N is having a weekend sale of over 1,000 books. Some of the titles/authors are surprising (as in not frequently on sale and not at Amazon), but the list is also riddled with $12.99 books. Note to B&N: That is not a sale price.

    Anyway, I saw books from Larissa Ione, Carrie Vaughn, Tahereh Mafi, Kate Atkinson, Michael Connelly’s Harry Bosch series and pretty much all of Kim Harrison’s. Kind of a nice departure from their usual MO.

  3. Lada
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:25:35

    I’ve always wanted to try Sayers and wonder if there’s a good place to start (despite the deal) or if she’s so consistent that any book is fine.

  4. Aisha
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:28:29

    “a stolen stomach”?!? Sounds intriguing…

  5. azteclady
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:37:08

    @Lada: @Aisha: Anything and everything Lord Peter is a good place to start. These short stories give you a good look at her characters and voice. If you enjoy them, I would then suggest starting the rest of the books at the beginning, with Whose Body?

    ETA: my review

  6. Liz H.
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:38:31

    The Sarah Mayberry is also free at B&N.

  7. Mom on the Run
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:44:37

    I think that without reading the first Kristen Proby book (this one), it would be difficult to get into the second one. I liked them even though I am not a fan of first person narrative, but they are light on plot and heavy on sex scenes. Depends on what you’re in the mood for at the time, but I enjoyed and have reread them already and will definitely buy the rest of the series as it comes out.

    And how can you say no to free Sarah Mayberry? I am way too impatient to ever wait long enough to get them for free. I was at a used bookstore today and bought 10 of her books because I realized that I only have one real live book by her and I count them among my favorites. Seemed like I should have them in case something goes whacko with my ebooks.

  8. Angela
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:49:55

    Jane (or anyone else that’s read it): How is the editing in the Kristen Proby books? It sounds interesting, and $0.99 is a good price to try, but if the editing is awful – and I’ve read some reviews that say it’s horrible/non-existent – I don’t want to waste my time.

  9. Jane
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:51:26

    @angela – I can’t recall. I remember DNFing it about the second chapter. Mom on the Run is right. Lots of sex, little plot. Just didn’t appeal to me.

  10. Joanna
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 14:56:39

    @azteclady: I so agree with your recommendation. I just discovered Sayers recently, partly because her first Lord Peter book “Whose Body?” is only $.99 on kindle! I really enjoyed it and have already downloaded the next one.

  11. Joy
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 15:05:33

    I just read the three Lord Peter books featuring Harriet Vane – I started with Strong Poison, which is the first book in which she appears, and didn’t feel that I had particularly missed anything crucial to understanding by not reading the others that came before.

  12. Jody
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 15:08:05

    @ Lada:
    Speaking as a Sayers fangirl, IMO there are two place to start. To get right to the romance, start with Strong Poison, then Have His Carcase, Gaudy Night and Busman’s Honeymoon. Those are actually the last four books in the series, but again, IMO, it’s OK to start there and then pick up the rest of the series once you’re hooked. The romance is the only major story arc in the series so except for those four, the books can be read in any order: Whose Body?, Clouds of Witness, The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club, The Nine Tailors, Five Red Herrings, Murder Must Advertise, Unnatural Death.

    There were two excellent BBC TV series that covered the entire Wimsey canon, too. It’s fun to contrast the two very different Wimseys. They’re respectively Lord Peter Wimsey and The Dorothy L. Sayers Collection. Oh, do you have a treat ahead of you!

    Must. Reread. For the bazillionth time.

  13. les
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 15:24:17

    Sayers and Wodehouse are my desert island reads.
    I love the HV/LP books and agree that you can start with Strong Poison and follow that sequence, but I think you get a better sense of the baggage Peter brings to the relationship if you at least read Clouds of Witness before Strong Poison. I would recommend Whose Body, Clouds of Witness, then the Vane stories. Peter’s identity as a WWI veteran and his facade as a bit of a flibberdy-gibbet are key to appreciating the immense depths of his feelings for Harriet.

  14. Lada
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 15:30:57

    Thanks for all the feedback! It started snowing where I am and I think book therapy is in order. :-)

  15. Liz Mc2
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 16:00:50

    If you’re thinking of starting Sayers at the beginning, some early books are in the public domain (at least for me in Canada) and available free at places like Project Gutenberg and

  16. azteclady
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 16:40:30

    Lada, I envy you the joy of discovering Lord Peter–and Liz, Whose Body? is also in the public domain in the US, I’m not sure about the rest. I cannot find any of the Lord Peter books at Project Gutenberg, but you can download Whose Body? from UPenn’s Digital Library here.

  17. Michelle
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 16:45:15

    Murder Must Advertise is excellent also. You can’t go wrong with Dorothy Sayers.

  18. Ggrace
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 18:51:07

    Clouds of Witness and Whose Body? are both available free at

  19. Mom on the Run
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 19:30:31

    @Angela, I didn’t notice anything and believe me I’ve read some stuff I wanted to rewrite just so I could stand to read it. That doesn’t mean it’s not there, but I really can’t think of anything blatantly badly edited in these books. Or at least not anything that was jarring enough to take me out of the story.

  20. Brian
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 21:20:44

    As far as Sayers and the public domain goes…

    Only Whose Body? is in the public domain in the US and other Life +70 (or more) countries [and a couple of earlier non-Lord Peter works]. Everything she published (except the published after death stuff by Jill Paton Walsh) is PD in Life +50 countries like Canada and has been since 2008. At least that’s my understanding.

  21. azteclady
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 21:23:34

    @Brian: That’s what I understand as well.

  22. Elyse
    Apr 06, 2013 @ 00:29:19

    Started Come Away With Me. Reads like fan fiction. Was it FF? Anyone know?

  23. Lada
    Apr 06, 2013 @ 08:11:50

    Thanks again to all. I appreciate all of the information and love having such a beloved author to discover!

  24. Mary
    Apr 06, 2013 @ 11:50:07

    I’ve never heard of Sayers, but this comment section has convinced me to try these books!

  25. Ggrace
    Apr 06, 2013 @ 13:11:25

    I don’t know where the site is located, but I downloaded Clouds of Witness a few months ago. I checked this morning and it is still listed.

    I guess I should delete it.

  26. carmen webster buxton
    Apr 07, 2013 @ 21:26:38


    They’re all fine, but Lord Peter does age throughout the series, so you might want to start with earlier books. Also, there is a slow-motion romance starting with STRONG POISON that lasts for several books. Sayers created a wonderful character in Lord Peter, and then in STRONG POISON, she introduced Harriet Vane, a fictionalized version of herself, for Lord Peter to fall in love with. Definitely read the last two novels — GAUDY NIGHT and BUSMAN’S HONEYMOON — only after reading the earlier Vane novels.

    Incidentally, Open Road did a wonderful job with the Lord Peter ebooks. I love the covers! And the formatting is refreshingly free of errors.

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