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Daily Deals: Romance, mystery, and a biography of a classic rocker

passion of patrick macneillThe Passion of Patrick MacNeill by Virginia Kantra. $ Free

From the Jacket Copy:

Dedicated burn surgeon Kate Sinclair shields her tender heart behind a white coat and a coolly professional manner. But something about the little patient the nurses dub “Iron Man” and his vital flyboy father challenges her as a doctor and a woman.

Since the car crash that killed his wife and almost took his son, pilot Patrick MacNeill’s life has revolved around his little boy. No one—no woman and certainly no interfering doctor—can intrude on their bond, forged in love and pain.

When little Jack’s care brings these two together, it ignites a passion they can’t ignore. But their growing involvement threatens Patrick’s emotional barriers and Kate’s professional future. With so much at stake, will she trust her judgment…or her heart?

Virginia Kantra has a slew of recommended reads from DA reviewers. This is the first in her MacNeills series, the romance of widowed pilot Patrick MacNeill and the burn surgeon who is treating his son. The Goodreads reviews make this sound really intriguing: the heroine is in her mid-30s, both characters are dedicated to their jobs, and the hero is described as “the most married man” his friend had ever met. If anyone can make me believe in a new romance for a grieving widower, it’s Ms. Kantra.

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pirate vishnu pandianPirate Vishnu by Gigi Pandian. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

A century-old treasure map of San Francisco’s Barbary Coast. Sacred riches from India. Two murders, one hundred years apart. And a love triangle… Historian Jaya Jones has her work cut out for her.

1906. Shortly before the Great San Francisco Earthquake, Pirate Vishnu strikes the San Francisco Bay. An ancestor of Jaya’s who came to the U.S. from India draws a treasure map…

Present Day. Over a century later, the cryptic treasure map remains undeciphered. From San Francisco to the southern tip of India, Jaya pieces together her ancestor’s secrets, maneuvers a complicated love life she didn’t count on, and puts herself in the path of a killer to restore a revered treasure.

How did I miss this series when it came out, especially with that title? Pirate Vishnu is the second in a mystery series featuring Jaya Jones, an Indian American living in present-day San Francisco. She’s a historian who teaches at a local college and gets into adventures that take her from one end of the world to the other; this time she journeys to southern India. It’s mostly mystery with a little romance, but the character sounds delightful and it sounds as if the books can be read out of order. And I love the cover.

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hanover square affair gardnerThe Hanover Square Affair by Ashley Gardner. $ Free

From the Jacket Copy:

London, 1816
Cavalry captain Gabriel Lacey returns to Regency London from the Napoleonic wars, burned out, fighting melancholia, his career ended. His interest is piqued when he learns of a missing girl, possibly kidnapped by a prominent member of Parliament. Lacey’s search for the girl leads to the discovery of murder, corruption, and dealings with a leader of the underworld. He deals with his own disorientation transitioning from a soldier’s life to the civilian world at the same time, redefining his role with his former commanding officer making new friends–from the top of society to the street girls of Covent Garden.
Book 1 of the Captain Lacey Regency Mysteries.

Ashley Gardner is the name Jennifer Ashley uses when she’s writing historical mysteries. This is the first in her Regency series featuring Captain Lacey, a Napoleonic War veteran. There is a romance to go along with the mysteries, and I believe my go-to source for mystery recommendations, DA reader and romanceland veteran Keishon, has read and enjoyed these, which is all I need to one-click.

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ill sleep when im dead zevonI’ll Sleep When I’m Dead by Crystal Zevon. $ 1.99.

From the Jacket Copy:

When Warren Zevon died in 2003, he left behind a rich catalog of dark, witty rock ‘n’ roll classics, including “Lawyers, Guns and Money,” “Excitable Boy,” and the immortal “Werewolves of London.” He also left behind a fanatical cult following and veritable rock opera of drugs, women, celebrity, genius, and epic bad behavior. As Warren once said, “I got to be Jim Morrison a lot longer than he did.”

Narrated by his former wife and longtime co-conspirator, Crystal Zevon, this intimate and unusual oral history draws on interviews with Bruce Springsteen, Stephen King, Bonnie Raitt, and numerous others who fell under Warren’s mischievous spell. Told in the words and images of the friends, lovers, and legends who knew him best, I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead captures Warren Zevon in all his turbulent glory.

Some DA commenters will have read the title of this book and known what it was about without reading the author name. Crystal Zevon is the widow of Warren Zevon, who wrote a good chunk of the soundtrack to the 1970s and 1980s. Publisher’s Weekly calls it “a sharp, funny, jaw-dropping rock biography that’s among the best of the sub-genre.” Out of curiosity I checked the one-star reviews at Amazon. One said it was boring, which I have trouble believing, and another said writing such “trash” was unfair to his grandchildren. Um, OK. Zevon was one of a kind, and this biography seems to capture at least some of that. Plus, the forward is by Carl Hiaasen. *click*

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Sunita has been reading romances almost as long as she has been reading. Her favorite genres these days are contemporary, category, and novels with romantic elements. She also reads SFF, mysteries, historical fiction, literary fiction, and the backs of cereal boxes. As of January 2015, all the books she reviews at Dear Author are from: (1) her massive TBR, (2) borrowed from the library, (3) received as gifts from friends/family, or (4) purchased with her own funds.


  1. Joanna
    May 29, 2014 @ 14:29:53

    I already own all of the Captain Lacey regency mysteries in PB and some in ebook – really enjoyed them and would highly recommend anyone who hasn’t already to get the first one for free. This is a series that really should be read in order as the relationships between characters and romance unfold slowly over the series.

  2. Brie
    May 29, 2014 @ 14:40:40

    I love Virginia Kantra’s books, both her contemporaries and her PNR’s. The MacNeill series are part of her older (early 2000’s) categories, and although I don’t remember much about the plot and characters, I do remember liking them.

  3. Darlynne
    May 29, 2014 @ 14:47:52

    Did someone say “treasure?” ARTIFACT appears to be the first book in the series, taking place in Scotland. It’s also $2.99, which makes today a good day. Thanks!

  4. Susan
    May 29, 2014 @ 16:11:47

    Another fan of the Capt. Lacey series. If you like Regency mysteries that are a little on the darker side (Kate Ross, CS Harris), this is a series for you. My only complaint is that Gardner’s interest in the series seems to be waning (again), but what’s out there so far is enjoyable.

  5. Jayne
    May 29, 2014 @ 17:04:20

    @Brie: I’ve read one of the later books in the series, enjoyed it then and have always meant to go back and start at the beginning. Free is a great way to do it!

  6. Michelle
    May 29, 2014 @ 17:17:26

    No, no, no. You don’t have a sexual affair with a patient or a patient’s family member. Well you can and kiss your license goodbye.

  7. Jennie
    May 29, 2014 @ 18:29:15

    Okay, I bought the Warren Zevon book (btw, the link goes to the Ashley Gardner book). I have a version of Zevon’s “My Ride’s Here” done by Bruce Springsteen in concert a couple of days after Zevon’s death on my iPod, and it’s one of my favorites. Thanks for including this.

  8. Sunita
    May 29, 2014 @ 19:52:34

    @Darlynne: Yes, I did see that and forgot to put it in the description, so thanks! I just had to go with Pirate Vishnu for obvious reasons. But the series sounds intriguing.

    @Michelle: Hah! Yes indeed. If it had been professor-student I would have been complaining all over the place.

    @Jennie: Thanks, I’ll try to fix that. I have a bootleg live version of Carmelita with Jackson Browne & Zevon and the banter before they start makes me sniffle every time.

  9. Jessie
    May 30, 2014 @ 00:42:12

    If you like the Captain Lacey series, the first three books (including the Hanover Square affair) plus two short stories are available together in “Captain Lacey Regency Mysteries, Volume One,” which is $4.99 as Kindle book.

  10. oceanjasper
    May 30, 2014 @ 04:49:57

    As it happens, I just finished the first Capt Lacey mystery last night (at 1.30am) after having the Volume One box set on my kindle for quite a while. I really enjoyed it. It’s so refreshing to see a different side of Regency London with all levels of society represented, rather than just aristocrats tripping over each other. The period flavour felt very authentic. I’m going to keep reading this series.

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