~*Krissys Bookshelf Reviews*~

 

 

 

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Free Ebooks (10/18/17)

 

 

PLEASE REMEMBER THAT THE FREE PRICING IS ONLY A SPECIAL FOR THE DIGITAL FORMAT OF THE BOOK THAT IS LISTED AND IS ONLY AVAILABLE FOR A LIMITED TIME, SO BE SURE TO PURCHASE THE E-BOOKS BEFORE THE PRICE RETURNS TO ITS NORMAL LISTING. (Unless you want to buy them at full price:)

 

Don't forget to check my Free Ebook page on Pinterest for more Free Ebook titles and genres not listed below!

 

 

 

My Dinosaur is Scared of Vegetables on Kindle

My Dinosaur is Scared of Vegetables by Lily Lexington: Give lasting delight to your child with this amazing tale about Jack and his cute dinosaur friend in his quest to avoid eating his vegetables. The story ends with a great lesson about nutrition that all parents will love.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

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Dating on the Dork Side on Kindle

Dating on the Dork Side by Charity Tahmaseb and Darcy Vance: When geek girl Camy Cavanaugh hacks into a secret, trash-talking website, it ignites a war between the sexes that won’t end until the whole school is turned upside down—and Camy’s world is turned inside out. When all is fair in love and war … can anyone survive?

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Daughter of Magic on Kindle

Daughter of Magic by Teresa Roman: Desperate to make sense of her visions, Lilli confides in Devin, the guy she’s fallen for. Devin shares his secrets, and he reveals dark knowledge of magic, witches and demons. What he knows about Lilli’s mother, presumed dead, stuns and angers her. She must learn to trust him again because only he can protect her from the coming danger.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

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The Last Scion on Kindle

The Last Scion by R. Michael Card: Senia had never thought of herself as special until Ahrn stumbles into her village with a strange artifact he’s protecting with his life. Now, something is calling to her, something so familiar she can’t ignore it… something that will test Ahrn’s vow to the god he serves and change Senia’s life forever.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

The Cycle of Arawn: The Complete Trilogy on Kindle

The Cycle of Arawn: The Complete Trilogy by Edward W. Robertson: In the Cycle of Arawn, a young man learns to wield the banned magic of his world. But his quest for knowledge soon drops him into a fight for his life—and sparks a revolution that could consume his entire kingdom. A USA Today bestseller and Audie-nominated fantasy trilogy.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

EON on Kindle

EON by Earl E. Hardman: Ian Lotus is a man with a mysterious past – and a secret that could reshape mankind’s destiny. The object of an interplanetary manhunt, Lotus must stay one step ahead of his pursuers, including the military, an invading alien fleet, and an interdimensional being of tremendous power.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

The Book Of Riley A Zombie Tale on Kindle

The Book Of Riley A Zombie Tale by Mark Tufo: This is the story of Riley, an American Bulldog, follow along as she tries to keep her pack safe from a zombie apocalypse. Traveling with her are Ben-Ben the high strung Yorkie, her favorite two-legger Jessie, Jessie’s younger brother Zachary and Riley’s arch-enemy Patches the Cat. They are a rag-tag group of survivors who when pushed to the limit realize that they are all each other has.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

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Dark Space Universe on Kindle

Dark Space Universe by Jasper T. Scott: Three hundred million scientists are exploring the universe on their way to the cosmic horizon. Along the way they discover an evil as old as time.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Armageddon Bound on Kindle

Armageddon Bound by Tim Marquitz: Frank Trigg is the last man standing against Armageddon. With help from the members of DRAC, an organization of wizards, psychics, telepaths, and low-end supernatural beings, Frank must thwart the pro-Armageddon forces and rescue an angel in whose life rests the fate of humanity. Better luck next time, humanity.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

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Bourbon Springs Box Set (Books 7-9) on Kindle

Bourbon Springs Box Set (Books 7-9) by Jennifer Bramseth: Romance with a splash of bourbon! Enjoy three free standalone romances set Kentucky’s beautiful bourbon country. And even if you don’t like bourbon… you’ll love a taste of the heat.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

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Love Times Two on Kindle

Love Times Two by Maggie Dallen: It’s a double wedding disaster when Elizabeth finds out her fiance cheated on her just before the TV crews arrive to document the festivities for a reality show. Luckily her sister found a replacement groom, and he just happens to be the same guy whose bed she woke up in after a night of drowning her sorrows. It was supposed to be a one night stand. So then, why does it feel so right to play pretend?

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

The Broken Road on Kindle

The Broken Road by K.S Ruff: Kristine’s running, from a lot of things… an abusive ex-husband, a creepy coworker, and a stalker. Thankfully, she has a plan. She’s moving to D.C., issuing a moratorium on dating, and burying herself in work. Enter… Air Force Captain Kadyn Rand. Kadyn derails Kri’s plan with hurricane force. He’s determined to win her heart but soon learns it will take much more than that to save her from her past.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Rogue Wolf on Kindle

Rogue Wolf by Zoe Perdita: Seth’s a seer, but ever since his old partner died his powers have been on the fritz. Enter Conner Sharp, Seth’s sexy and mysterious new partner. While the dark-haired stranger ignites Seth’s desire, he also awakens the seer’s power with every touch. Seth sees their future together -“ a future rich with lust and danger -“ but is it a future the enigmatic Conner wants?

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Magic in the Desert Box Set on Kindle

Magic in the Desert Box Set by Christine Pope: Three complete first-in-series paranormal romance novels from USA Today bestselling author Christine Pope: Darkangel: Ancient curses…family feuds…finding the man of your dreams can be a real nightmare for the modern witch. Bad Vibrations: Alien conspiracies…government cover-ups…what’s a psychic on the run to do? Chosen: Sometimes the end of the world is just the beginning….

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

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The Trouble with Falling (Trouble Series Sweet Romance Book 4) on Kindle

The Trouble with Falling by Rochelle Morgan: The plan: prevent heartbreak by never falling in love again. Problem #1: Lex. The artist Sophie chats to online every day. Problem #2: Caleb. Best man at Sophie’s sister’s wedding. Both seem determined to crack through her tough exterior. Can she stick to her plan, or will she end up falling?

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Filthy Professor on Kindle

Filthy Professor by Amy Brent: That’s it, I can’t stand it anymore! I’ve spent months trying to get Professor Logan Clark to notice me. I dress sexy, I gaze into his eyes, I lick my lips when he looks at me. I want to get him out of his classroom and out of his clothes for a little private, one-on-one tutoring…

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Her Web Master on Kindle

Her Web Master by Normandie Alleman: For every ounce of pleasure, a price must be paid. If you’re looking for an erotic romance with a filthy online book boyfriend who will make your toes curl, meet Sophie’s mysterious Dom.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Beautiful Broken Girl on Kindle

Beautiful Broken Girl by Rachael Tonks: A thousand questions run through Kennedy’s mind as she tries to escape the evil of her past. Starting her new found life she never thought she would ever find happiness… until him. Cole was perfectly content going through his days on autopilot with no real purpose… until her.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

The Roommate on Kindle

The Roommate by Shae Buggs: In order to cover over-priced city rent, Mallory Bates does the responsible thing and asks a complete stranger to move in with her. Kaden Covington, her supposed Southern belle roommate, turns out to be a he rather than the she Mallory expected. Mallory is naïve to the signs of a budding relationship with Kaden until it’s too late to turn off the emotions.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Sins of the Father on Kindle

Sins of the Father by Sunanda J. Chatterjee: Police Officer Harrison McNamara grew up with a silver spoon in his mouth. The former Wellington Estates heir has dedicated his life to taking criminals off the streets. But when he goes undercover to expose a blackmailing scheme, he meets a freelance model who may hold a key to his past. Sins of the Father is a stand-alone romantic saga.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

The Prince’s Virgin on Kindle

The Prince’s Virgin by Charlize Starr: I’m the heir to the throne. According to custom, I have to pick my bride during a festival. A festival where women compete for my attention. Seriously, how outdated. Besides, all I can think about is the girl I’ve been talking to online, anonymously. The one who disclosed all of her dirty little secrets to me. She just sent me a new message. She’s been chosen for the festival. She has to come. It’s the law.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Helena’s Colonel on Kindle

Helena’s Colonel by Faith Crawford: Long-time bachelor and country doctor Eli Yoder is finally looking to tie the knot. But love, romance and companionship have nothing to do with it. Instead, he is looking for a woman who will put aside her own needs, dreams and desires to become an ideal mother to his six-month-old twin nephew and niece.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Her Two Bears on Kindle

Her Two Bears by T. S. Ryder: Danita Valdez is about to live her dream. She’s inherited a small farm from her uncle and wants to make it her little paradise. But then loan shark McGrath turns up and transfers her uncle’s debt to her. If she doesn’t pay, he’ll auction off her virginity to the highest bidder. And as if things can’t get worse, two of McGrath’s thugs show up to “protect” her.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

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Likely Suspects on Kindle

Likely Suspects by G.K. Parks: Alexis Parker, a former federal agent, finds herself thrust into the role of a bodyguard hired to protect a CEO, James Martin. Along the way, Alex must overcome her inner demons, resist Martin’s constant advances, and identify the party attempting to destroy Martin’s life. The conspiracy unfolds in an action-packed tale of envy and revenge.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

I've Been Watching You on Kindle

I’ve Been Watching You by K.A. Richardson: While taking a course in Digital Forensics Ben Cassidy meets the charming Jacob Tully, an ex-army war veteran struggling with his past. While the team investigate the apparent hit and run of a care home worker, Ben suspects there is more to it. As events unfold she discovers the connection to a series of murders much closer to home.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Gone Unnoticed on Kindle

Gone Unnoticed by Robin Mahle: Kate Reid has stared down pain and death and come through the other side. Now, as she begins to piece her life back together, entering the FBI’s training program at Quantico, there is light at the end of the tunnel. But when her friend and mentor, Special Agent Nick Scarborough, pulls her into an investigation into the disappearance of young immigrant women, Kate begins to connect with the victims like never before. Will Kate lose hope of renewing a life that has already robbed her of so much?

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

The Harvesting on Kindle

The Harvesting by Melanie Karsak: Layla Petrovich has spent her whole life running away from her hometown of Hamletville. But when she receives a desperate call to return just as a mysterious outbreak sweeps the country, Layla’s instincts urge her to go. Good thing, because the dead are rising. Layla, however, isn’t entirely on her own. With her psychic powers growing, surely everything will turn out okay, right?

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

The Doodlebug War on Kindle

The Doodlebug War by Andrew Updegrove: A post-ISIS terrorist organization has taken control of much of the Mid East. Now it’s threatening to launch a horrific attack that will bring the United States and Europe to their knees.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

A Friend of Silence on Kindle

A Friend of Silence by M. Lee Prescott: The silence of Old Harbor Friends School is shattered by the death of lascivious, comptroller, Milt Wickie, discovered in his office, a scrimshaw knife protruding from his chest. A knife belonging to beloved teacher, Bess Dore. Bess jumps headlong into the murder investigation along with old flame, police detective, Roger Demaris.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle Kobo Apple

 

Diced: Charlie Cooper Mystery (Book 3) on Kindle

Diced: Charlie Cooper Mystery (Book 3) by Deany Ray: Charlie’s new life as an undercover detective sounds more glamorous than it actually is. Her next case seems simple enough until she stumbles upon a dead body. Between solving the case, going to cocktail class with her mom and saving a disastrous dinner with the hottest cop in town, it’s time for Charlie to step up before everything comes crumbling down.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Alex Landon Starter Library on Kindle

Alex Landon Starter Library by Gavin Reese: The perfect place to introduce yourself to Detective Alex Landon, as well as the authentic writing style of Gavin Reese. Contains three short stories that are ideal for crime TV fans!

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

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The Sun God's Heir on Kindle

The Sun God’s Heir by Elliott Baker: For three thousand years a hatred burns. To defeat a brutal pharaoh reembodied in 17th century France, René Gilbert must fight his way through pirates and slavers to Morocco and reclaim the power of his own ancient past. To protect those he loves from one he once called brother, he must remember…

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

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Death Edge Tales on Kindle

Death Edge Tales by Chris Rogers: In this first volume of tales from novelist Chris Rogers, you’ll travel inside the minds of unpredictable characters from both sides of death’s bony grasp. In the spirit of Rod Serling, Edgar Allan Poe and Alfred Hitchcock, these narratives take you down a path filled with thorny surprises, often frightful, sometimes amusing and always gripping.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

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Shutter Speed by Freya Barker: He wasn’t supposed to be here, but he can’t seem to escape his old life. Stuck in an old trailer in the mountains, he walks a fine line between ruse and reality. With the arrival of a young-looking pixie—who turns out to be a full grown, hot-blooded woman—his balance is thrown. He tries to avoid her, but with the little pixel peeper snapping everything in sight, she unintentionally risks his exposure.

This book is Free on October 18, 2017

Kindle

 

Halloween Horror Nights RIP Tour (#3)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Capilla Scream House

 

 

 

 

Blackout Haunted House

 

 

 

Rocky Point Haunted House

 

 

 

Unknown Haunted House

 

 

 

Ahwatukee Haunted House

 

 

 

Unknown UK Haunted Cemetery

 

 

Highland Dragon Warrior (Dawn of the Highland Dragon #1) by Isabel Cooper

Highland Dragon Warrior (Dawn of the Highland Dragon) - Isabel Cooper

 

 

 

Author Isabel Cooper

Title: Highland Dragon Warrior

SeriesDawn of the Highland Dragon

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Legend claims
When Scotland fell to English rule
The Highland dragons took a vow:
Freedom at any price.


The war may be over, but so long as English magic controls the Highlands, not even a dragon laird can keep his clan safe. What Cathal MacAlasdair needs is a warrior fierce enough to risk everything, yet gifted enough to outwit an enemy more monster than man.

What he needs is Sophia.

Alchemist Sophia Metzger traveled to Loch Arach in search of knowledge. She never dreamed she'd learn to do battle, ride through the stars on the back of a dragon, or catch the eye of a Highland laird. But as her quest turns to sizzling chemistry and inescapable danger, she'll soon discover the thrill of being caught in a dragon's claws.

 

 

 

 

 

I thought it was really refreshing getting a historical paranormal rather than a futuristic or current day one I especially love the Highland Dragon. Yum.

Two bumps for the author both for her writing style and author voice, I highly enjoyed it.

I favored the character and plot development which was long in detail however considering its the first book starting a new series for the Highland Dragons I thought it was a great start.

I think I really needed something fresh in this paranormal romance genre that didn't feel as if it was cut and pasted fill in the blank formula that many books these days feel they've been doing. I really needed this book at this time. Thanks Miss Cooper for a great read.

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a digital copy in exchange for an honest review from Sourcebooks Casablanca.

All thoughts, comments and ratings are my own.

If any of Krissy's Bookshelf Reviews has been helpful please stop by to like my post or leave a comment to let me know what you think. I love hearing from you!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
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Chasing Red (Red #1) by Isabelle Ronin

Chasing Red - Isabelle Ronin

 

 

Author: Isabelle Ronin

Title: Chasing Red

Series: Red

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They said she was going to be my ruin...
Then let her ruin me.

Caleb Lockhart has everything—wealth, adoration, a brilliant future. Until a chance encounter with a siren in a red dress changes everything. Until he meets the woman he dubs Red.

Veronica Strafford's past makes it hard for her to trust anyone. Now, kicked out of her apartment, she reluctantly accepts Caleb's offer for a place to stay.

Caleb feels intensely drawn to Veronica. And, for the first time in his life, he really wants something—someone. Too bad Veronica's heart might just be the one thing Caleb can't win.

 

 

 

 

 

Chasing Red was an okay read but I would suggest maybe slotting the book as an NA rather than Adult romance due to some of the more immaturity and mentality of its h/h which kind of reminded me of a West Side Story type of romance for the younger minded readers working their way from teen to adult period.

Opposites side of the tracks kind of relationship for those who really like those type of love stories Chasing Red totally works. But I felt there could have been more character development that brought them further along as a couple and as individual people.

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a digital copy in exchange for an honest review from Sourcebooks Casablanca.

All thoughts, comments and ratings are my own.

If any of Krissy's Bookshelf Reviews has been helpful please stop by to like my post or leave a comment to let me know what you think. I love hearing from you!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Krissys Bookshelf Reviews has a QR code for your phone!

 

Halloween Horror Nights RIP Tour (#2)

 

 

 

 

 

Wee Western Haunt

 

 

 

 

Corpse Bride

 

 

 

Malcontent Maze

 

 

 

 

The Burning Man Crypt

 

 

 

 

Murder Cabin

 

 

 

Deadman's Passage

 

 

Going Dark (The Lost Platoon #1) by Monica McCarty

Going Dark (The Lost Platoon) - Monica McCarty

 

 

 

Author: Monica McCarty

Title: Going Dark

Series: The Lost Platoon

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After walking into a trap on a covert op in Russia, the men from top secret SEAL Team Nine are presumed dead. Not knowing whom they can trust, and with war hanging in the balance, the survivors must go dark and scatter around the globe.

Marine ecologist Annie Henderson joins her new boyfriend on a trip to the Western Isles of Scotland to protest a hazardous offshore drilling venture. When she realizes that she may be swept up in something far more dangerous than she'd intended, there is only one man she can turn to. . . .

She and the mysterious but sexy dive boat captain haven't exactly gotten off to the best start, but something about his quiet confidence makes her think that he's the kind of man she can depend on. Because he's gruff and guarded, she can tell Dan Warren has secrets. But she could never imagine how high the stakes are for him to keep his cover, even as he risks everything to protect her. .

 

 

 

 

 

 

Crazy busy, could have used a glossary or some kind of diagram of how everyone is connected and could have focused more on the main h/h but McCarty did spend a lot of time world building which she does so great. The romance kind of took a back seat while the world building and character building began taking form to build the plot for this new world.

As a start I am quite impressed with how well McCarty has done transitioning from historical romance to contemporary. Readers also get more than one romantic involvement which sets up some couples for more installments in the future for our Lost Platoon guys. I look forward to reading more books in the future.

 

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a print copy in exchange for an honest review from Penguin Publishing.

All thoughts, comments and ratings are my own.

If any of Krissy's Bookshelf Reviews has been helpful please stop by to like my post or leave a comment to let me know what you think. I love hearing from you!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Krissys Bookshelf Reviews has a QR code for your phone!

Archangel's Viper (Guild Hunter #10) by Nalini Singh

Archangel's Viper - Nalini Singh

Author: Nalini Singh

Title: Archangel's Viper

Series: Guild Hunter

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Once a broken girl known as Sorrow, Holly Chang now prowls the shadowy gray underground of the city for the angels. But it’s not her winged allies who make her a wanted woman—it’s the unknown power coursing through her veins. Brutalized by an insane archangel, she was left with the bloodlust of a vampire, the ability to mesmerize her prey, and a poisonous bite.

Now, someone has put a bounty on her head…

Venom is one of the Seven, Archangel Raphael’s private guard, and he’s as infuriating as he is seductive. A centuries-old vampire, his fangs dispense a poison deadlier than Holly’s. But even if Venom can protect Holly from those hunting her, he might not be able to save himself—because the strange, violent power inside Holly is awakening…

No one is safe.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A lack of romantic interest both for the h/h but I think the story was less about the h/h and more about pushing further the world for more books rather than focusing on any intimate purpose for them to be in the book.

It did have lots of Singh's talented action and crazy great plot but it lacked in the character building I typically enjoy in her work. Still a decent read but it felt like a juncture to continue or possibly create a new jump off series connected to this one.

 

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a digital copy from Penguin Publishing.

All thoughts, comments and ratings are my own.

If any of Krissy's Bookshelf Reviews has been helpful please stop by to like my post or leave a comment to let me know what you think. I love hearing from you!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Krissys Bookshelf Reviews has a QR code for your phone!

Enjoy An Exclusive Sneek Peek Of: Even the Darkest Stars by Heather Fawcett!!

Even the Darkest Stars  
Kamzin has always dreamed of becoming one of the Emperor's royal explorers, the elite climbers tasked with mapping the wintry, mountainous Empire and spying on its enemies.

But everything changes when the mysterious River Shara, the greatest explorer ever known, arrives in her village and demands to hire Kamzin for his next expedition.

This is Kamzin's chance to prove herself—even though it means climbing Raksha, the tallest and deadliest mountain in the Aryas.

The challenges of climbing Raksha are unlike anything Kamzin expected and as dark secrets are revealed, Kamzin must unravel the truth of their mission—while surviving the deadliest climb she has ever faced.
 
LEARN MORE
 


PART I
AZMIRI


ONE


 

I STRETCHED MY hands over the dragon eggs, focusing all my concentration on their indigo shells, and murmured the incantation. The air rippled and shimmered.

I can do this. The thought was born of desperation rather than confidence. My fingers were frozen, my stomach growled, and my legs ached from hours sitting cross-legged. Behind me, the sheer slopes of Mount Azmiri, draped with cobweb clouds, rose to greet the gray sky. Beyond the narrow ledge I crouched on, the mountainside fell away as if hewn by an ax. The forest far below was hidden under waves of mist, with only a few treetops floating above the surface like skeletal ships. The wind stirred my hair and slid its long fingers down the collar of my chuba. I shivered. The faint light gathering over the eggs flickered and died.

Chirri smacked me on the back of my head, causing me to drop my talisman, a string of ravensbone beads. “Foolish girl! Don’t break your concentration. You’ll never get it right that way.”

“I’ll never get it right any way,” I muttered.

She smacked me again. Perhaps she thought I would do better if my brains were rearranged. “This is the simplest resurrection spell I can teach you at your level. Do. It. Again.”

I made a noise halfway between a sigh and a growl. The incense burning beside the clutch of lifeless eggs tickled my nose, and I pressed my lips together. If I sneezed, Chirri would make us go inside, into her cramped, airless hut, with its smell of burned herbs and its shelves lined with poorly cleaned animal skulls. Sending a silent prayer to the spirits, I looped the talisman around my hands, shook the beads over the eggs, and began the incantation again.

After several moments, Chirri let out an exasperated cry. “Are you speaking the words correctly?”

“Yes, Chirri,” I said, straining to keep the anger from my voice. “I’m speaking the words correctly. I’m focusing my mind. I’m doing everything right, and I’m still a completely useless apprentice.”

“You are wasting time with this obstinacy, Kamzin.”

“We’ve been here since dawn,” I snapped, losing my temper at last. “Trust me, the last thing I want to do is waste time.”

The old woman smiled, the folds of her many wrinkles deepening, and I cursed my foolishness. Chirri was never angry, not truly—she merely used it as a ploy to make others reveal their weaknesses.

“You will stay here,” she said slowly, “until every egg has hatched. Or until the glaciers rise up and cover the village, or the witches return to the mountains in search of human souls.”

Chortling at my expression, Chirri untucked her legs and drew herself to her feet, arranging her many shawls with exaggerated care. Then she retreated toward her hut, which perched higher up the mountainside on an even more precarious ledge. From there, she would watch me until I did as I was told.

Or froze to death.

I glared at the eggs, as if my incompetence was their fault. With a growl, I stretched my aching limbs, then settled in to try again. A bead of sweat trickled down my neck.

Hshhh,” came a low voice behind me. “Is she gone?”

I whirled. “Tem!”

To my astonishment, my best friend’s head poked up over the side of the ledge. He must have climbed sideways from the terraces, finding footholds and handholds in the weathered granite of the mountainside.

“Er—Kamzin?” he said. “Could you give me a hand? My fingers are numb.”

Bracing my foot against a rock, I hauled him onto the ledge. He collapsed on the ground, panting.

“How long were you down there?”

“Only since your fiftieth try,” he said. I tried to punch him, but he rolled away, laughing. His handsome face was flushed with cold, and his hair, which usually hung low over his forehead, obscuring half his features, stuck out every which way. I couldn’t help laughing too. I had never been happier to see him in my life.

“You look like a rooster,” I said.

He blushed, running his hands through his hair so it would curtain his face again.

“You’d better hurry,” I said, glancing over my shoulder. The clouds were advancing up the slope, sweeping over us in lacy bands. Chirri had vanished, as had her hut. “This weather won’t hold.”

He gazed at me uncomprehendingly. “What are you talking about?”

“You know what—you have to help me with these eggs.”

“I can’t.” His face went white. “Chirri will know.”

“She won’t. She won’t even know you were here.”

He glanced from me to the eggs, then back at me again. “But she’ll never believe—”

I grabbed his shoulder. “It doesn’t matter if she believes it or not. It just has to happen, so I can get out of here. Please, Tem. I’m going crazy.”

He glanced from me to the eggs. I could see him weighing his fear of Chirri against his desire to help me. “All right,” he said finally. “But Chirri can’t know I can do this. Or my father.”

I nodded. Tem’s father worked for my own father, as his head herdsman. He was a dour, sharp-tempered man who was gentler with a misbehaving yak than he was with his son. Tem was supposed to follow in his footsteps, and his father wouldn’t be pleased to learn that his true talent lay in shamanism, not husbandry.

Tem took the talisman, winding the beads around his fingers, and began to chant. He seemed to change, in that moment—something in his bearing and demeanor shifted slightly, and he became almost a stranger.

I shivered. I had watched Tem work spells before—he often helped me practice, in secret—but I had never entirely grown used to it. He murmured the incantation in the shamanic language confidently, absently, with none of his usual self-consciousness, and I could feel the power gather like a storm. The ravensbone made a shivery sound that seemed to vibrate the air.

The eggs glowed. The glow turned to flickering, like sunlight through branches. Cracks appeared in the shells, and then, suddenly, they burst apart.

The baby dragons were the size of sparrows, with long, snakelike bodies supported by six squat legs. They began chittering almost immediately, shaking their damp wings in the breeze. The little lights they carried in their bellies flickered on and off. These were thin and colorless when the dragons were young; as they aged, they would gradually darken and take on color—commonly, an iridescent blue or green.

“Stand back,” Tem said. He murmured again to the largest dragon, which let out a questioning chirp. As one, the dragons spread their wings and took flight. They swirled around us in a tumult of wind and feathery scales, making me shriek and laugh. Then they zoomed away like a glittering arrow, their lights bouncing through the clouds.

“Where are they going?” I said.

“I sent them to Chirri.”

I doubled over with laughter, imagining Chirri’s reaction when the baby dragons swarmed her hut, hungry for milk and teething on her furniture.

“Why aren’t you here in my place?” I said, shaking my head. “You should be Chirri’s apprentice. You’re as powerful as her.”

“Because my father isn’t the elder,” Tem said. “And no, I’m not as powerful as Chirri.”

“Near enough,” I said lightly, sensing the mood shift. My apprenticeship to Chirri had always been a sore point between us. The truth was, Tem would have made a far better shaman for our village than me. But Azmiri’s shaman was always a relation of the elder, usually a child or younger sibling—a way of consolidating power, which would surely backfire spectacularly with me. Tem, as gifted as he was, was a herdsman’s son. It was unheard-of for someone like him to assume such an important position in the village.

“Come on,” I said, grabbing his hand. “Let’s go find some breakfast.”

We flew down the rubbly slope of the mountain, leaping over boulders and grassy knolls with practiced ease. As we came within view of the village, the cloud lifted, revealing huts of bone-white stone huddled against the mountainside, threaded with steep, narrow lanes. The southern half of the village was newer and more uniform than the rest, the huts less eroded and roofed with pale terra-cotta tiles. They had been constructed two centuries ago, replacing those destroyed by the terrible fires that had swept through Azmiri.

We took a shortcut through the orchard, and I leaped up to snatch an apple from one of the boughs. It wasn’t the season yet, and the flesh was painfully tart, but I didn’t care. I was hungry enough to eat my own boots.

The terrain rose again, and I scrambled up the hill. The earth fell away on one side. Across the valley, the mountains Biru and Karranak shoved their snowy heads into the clouds. A familiar feeling welled up inside me—the feeling that I could leap across the valley and come to rest lightly on one of those other peaks. As if I could dig my toes and fingers into the wind and scale it as I had scaled so many earthbound things.

I was ahead of Tem, and didn’t at first hear him yelling. I turned, laughing breathlessly, running backward now.

“What did you—” I began, then let out a cry. I stumbled over a rock and landed hard on my elbows.

All I could see was color. A cacophony of color, green and red and purple and blue. It filled the sky like a monstrous cloud. But as I opened my mouth to scream, the thing resolved itself into a shape—a balloon.

A hot air balloon, sweeping silently over the mountainside. I could make out several small figures silhouetted on the deck, gazing down at me like haughty ravens. The balloon’s shadow passed over me, and I shivered.

Tem reached my side. “You all right?”

I nodded, and he helped me to my feet. We watched the vessel drift over the village, slowly descending until the deck came to rest on one of the barley terraces. The massive balloon sagged to the ground, obscuring our view of the occupants.

“Spirits!” was all I could say.

Tem made a dismissive noise. “River Shara travels in style. He’s probably full of enough hot air to power that balloon himself.”

I stared at him. “River Shara?”

“Ye—”

The River Shara? You’re telling me that was the Royal Explorer?

“I think so. I—”

“The greatest explorer in the history of the Empire?”

“Well, I don’t know if he’s—”

I grabbed his arm, excitement flooding me. “Why didn’t you tell me he was coming?”

“I only heard of it yesterday, from one of the traders. You should have known, anyway—why didn’t Lusha tell you?”

“Oh, of course,” I said, with exaggerated understanding. “I forgot that you haven’t met my sister.”

Tem rolled his eyes. “All right. But I’m sure she and Elder have known about this for weeks.”

“Of course they have.” I kicked at the top of a tree poking over the edge of the cliff. Somewhere below, a vulture let out an angry squawk. “They wouldn’t think to tell me. What in the world would the Royal Explorer be doing here?”

Emperor Lozong had many explorers in his employ—men and women, mostly of noble blood, charged with mapping his vast and mountainous empire, spying on the barbarian tribes that threatened his southern and western borders, and charting safe paths for his armies. As his territory expanded, the emperor relied increasingly on explorers to provide him with vital information, not only about the lands he possessed, but also those he wished to conquer. My mother, Insia, had been one of them, though her connection to the nobility was so distant that it would have counted for little at court. River Shara, on the other hand, belonged to one of the oldest noble families, one with close blood ties to the emperor himself. He had earned the official title of Royal Explorer—the most powerful position at court, rivaling even the General of the First Army—after leading a harrowing expedition beyond the Drakkar Mountains in the farthest reaches of the Empire, scaling mountains and glaciers and cheating death countless times. Though many men and women had occupied the position of Royal Explorer, few were spoken of with the same reverence as River Shara.

Tem was shaking his head. “Maybe the emperor sent him to make sure we’re still here, and if not, to update the maps.”

I snorted. It wasn’t an unlikely idea. High in the Arya Mountains at the eastern border of the emperor’s lands, we rarely received visitors from the distant Three Cities. When we did, it was the talk of the village. Even a band of cloth merchants was cause for a banquet.

And this was no mere merchant.

My heart pounded. “I have to meet him. I have to talk to him.”

Tem had been speaking—about what, I didn’t know, for I hadn’t been listening. He fell silent, his expression troubled. “Kamzin—”

“This could be my chance.” I didn’t have to explain what I meant—from the look he wore, he understood well enough. He knew how I jumped at the opportunity to join my father’s men on their hunting trips in Bengarek Forest. How I spent my free days climbing the neighboring mountains. How, when my mother was alive, I had begged her to take me along on her expeditions, and how I still spent many evenings poring over her maps of strange and distant lands, tracing the faded lines of ink with my fingers. I wanted to be an explorer more than anything in the world. I wanted to traverse glaciers and map wilderness and sleep under a roof of stars. I wanted to push against the world and feel it push back.

“So what are you going to do?” Tem said. “Walk up to the Royal Explorer and ask him to please bring you along on his next expedition? Offer to carry his pack or massage his feet?”

“I don’t know what I’m going to do.” I twisted my fingers through my braid. It smelled like Chirri’s incense. “I have to think.”

“What you should be thinking about is your lessons with Chirri,” Tem said. “Not impressing some noble from the Three Cities.”

“And where will that get me?” I felt my temper rise. “Tem, I’m seventeen years old, and I’m still only a junior apprentice. Chirri refuses to make me her assistant, and you know what? I don’t blame her. I hate magic—I’m terrible at it. You know I can’t do this for the rest of my life, no matter what my father says.”

“You’re terrible at magic because you don’t try,” Tem said, giving me an exasperated look. “Anyone can do magic. You get better the more you work at it. It’s like any skill—weaving, or running, or anything else.”

What Tem said was true enough, to a point. Anyone could do magic, provided they had the right talismans and knew the incantations. But there were some who, for whatever reason, took to it more naturally than others. Who possessed an affinity no amount of training could match. That was Tem—it would never be me.

“You know I’m no good at running,” I pointed out. “My legs are too short. I always finished last when we used to race each other. It’s like that with magic—there’s a part of me that’s too short, or too small, and nothing is ever going to change that.”

“You’ve improved since I started helping—”

I turned away. “You’re not listening.”

“I always listen to you,” he said. “I doubt you’ll be able to say the same for River Shara. He’s known for many things, but listening isn’t one of them.”

I scowled. I knew River Shara’s dark reputation—everyone did. Stories of his merciless assassinations of barbarian chieftains, his intolerance of weakness in his traveling companions. He was said to have stranded men and women who had proven too weak to keep up with him, and not all of them made it back to the Three Cities.

I also knew that most stories were like the shadows painted by the late-afternoon sun: deceptive and exaggerated. I wasn’t going to be afraid of stories.

Tem gazed at me for a long moment. Then he sighed. “What do you want me to do?”

I leaped into his arms, wrapping him in a tight hug. “I knew I could count on you.”

He pushed me away, trying and failing to hide the blush spreading across his cheeks. “Have I ever told you how crazy you are?”

“A few times,” I said. “Look on the bright side—if I become a famous explorer, I’ll take you on my expeditions.”

“So I can traipse around in the wilderness, sleeping on rocks and roots and half freezing to death?” Tem snorted. “I’d rather herd yaks.”

“No, you’d rather be Chirri’s apprentice.” I regretted it instantly. A shadow crossed Tem’s face, and he ducked behind his curtain of hair.

“Anyway,” I said, “I’m going to talk to Lusha. Maybe she’ll know what this is about.”

“She’s Lusha,” Tem said. “She knows everything. Whether she’ll be in a sharing mood is another question.”

 

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Think Like Sherlock Holmes on Kindle

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Halloween Horror Nights RIP Tour (#1)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Haunted Cemetery Tours

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tiny House Nation's House of Horrors

 

 

 

 

Historical Homes Haunted House

 

 

 

 

Fright Night Playland Haunted Mansion

 

 

 

 

 

New England / Spookyworld

 

 

The Art of Hiding by Amanda Prowse

The Art of Hiding - Amanda Prowse

 

AuthorAmanda Prowse

Title: The Art of Hiding

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Nina McCarrick lives the perfect life, until her husband, Finn, is killed in a car accident and everything Nina thought she could rely on unravels.

Alone, bereft and faced with a mountain of debt, Nina quickly loses her life of luxury and she begins to question whether she ever really knew the man she married. Forced to move out of her family home, Nina returns to the rundown Southampton council estate—and the sister—she thought she had left far behind.

But Nina can’t let herself be overwhelmed—her boys need her. To save them, and herself, she will have to do what her husband discouraged for so long: pursue a career of her own. Torn between the life she thought she knew and the reality she now faces, Nina finally must learn what it means to take control of her life.

Bestselling author Amanda Prowse once again plumbs the depths of human experience in this stirring and empowering tale of one woman’s loss and love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I thought the Art of Hiding could use some extra information in some places but I really enjoyed this book despite being so short and lacking some information because it touches on the fact that not everyone realizes that once you've become someones wife and mother of their children a part of a marriage and a family and a social group that you can sometimes lose who you used to be in the middle of it all, and trying to find yourself again is more difficult than you think especially when you learn that some things about the man you were married to weren't on the up and up.

Trying to find who you are and how you lost your way is only half the battle and I wish we'd gotten a deeper exploration of that. Still, its a great read and a great book.

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a digital copy from Lake Union Publishing.

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Free Ebooks (9/20/17)

 

 

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Classics on Stage on Kindle

Classics on Stage by Julie Meighan: This book is a collection of plays that have been adapted from well-known fairy tales. They can be used as performance plays, readers theater or just used to promote reading in groups. Each play is between five and ten minutes long. These activities are designed to be fun and enjoyable as well as promoting coordination, movement, character development and creativity!

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Natural Antibiotics And Antivirals on Kindle

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The Reluctant Messenger on Kindle

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Shortfall on Kindle

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Empowered: Agent on Kindle

Empowered: Agent by Dale Ivan Smith: Former super-villain Mathilda Brandt must become one again in order to save her family and thousands of others from a psychotic criminal mastermind. The world says those with superpowers are either heroes or villains. But what if you’re both?

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Malice in Wonderland on Kindle

Malice in Wonderland by Lotus Rose: The wickedly funny reimagining of Alice in Wonderland is here! In this continuation of the classic, 13-year-old Alice snaps one day and decides to take revenge, killing all her tormentors one by one. Now that she’s stopped being so nice, can she finally escape? For fans of dark comedy and twisted fairy tales.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Apprentice Fool on Kindle

Apprentice Fool by Aldred Chase: Thirteen-year-old Keth has a dangerous secret: he keeps faith with the old rituals and dances that the prince has banned. He is forced to flee his village and becomes the apprentice fool in a troupe of strolling players. Can he keep his audience laughing long enough to help the rebels overthrow the prince?

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Fate's Karmas on Kindle

Fate’s Karmas by R.E.M: Kelvin is a 25-year old who can tell when karma is making its way back around to fated individuals. When this happens, a glare appears on the fated. Such occurrences often trigger the emergence of an immortal fate dealer, looking to impose a judgment handed down by Fate. Under certain circumstances, the dealer’s execution may be extreme. And for this reason, fate seers like Kelvin are needed to ensure that the punishments truly fit the crimes.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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The Second Incarnation of Beelzebub on Kindle

The Second Incarnation of Beelzebub by Anthony O’Connor: The demonic Lord of Hate, Lord Beelzebub, incarnates as Jesus of Nazareth and founds Christianity in an attempt to become a god. Everyone is against him, including Yahweh, Lucifer, the Romans, the Jews, the Apostles, and even the Goddess Ishtar. The chaos rapidly grows to biblical proportions. It doesn’t turn out at all as he expected but he’s not going down without a fight. A harsh and cynical, moderately hilarious satire of the Life of Christ that is long overdue.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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The Cowboy Inherits a Bride on Kindle

The Cowboy Inherits a Bride by Cora Seton: Sunshine Patterson is down on her luck and loses her Chicago home, job and boyfriend in one day. Fortunately, her Aunt Cecily has provided her with the perfect combination living and restaurant space to start over in small town Chance Creek, Montana. Upon her arrival she is surprised to find that her restaurant space—and apartment—are occupied by a rival to her inheritance: the incredibly sexy, incredibly wrong for her, Cole Linden. Can Cole and Sunshine find a way they both can win?

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A Lancaster Amish Storm on Kindle

A Lancaster Amish Storm by Ruth Price: Katie Lapp has loved Zach Yoder as long as she can remember and she knows he loves her in return. After a year of courtship, Katie is ready to begin her life as an Amish wife, but Zach is unsure and longs for a wider world than his childhood home of Faith’s Landing. Faced with the choice of love and possibility, societal expectations and the temptations of the flesh, will Zach and Katie’s love be strong enough to endure the oncoming storm?

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Always Mine on Kindle

Always Mine by Ruth Cardello: Asher Barrington has a reputation for crushing his opponents and getting what he wants. But from the moment Emily walks into his office and challenges him, winning takes on a whole new meaning. Emily is intent on opening a museum for the blind and the only thing standing in her way is sexy-as-hell billionaire, Asher. He won’t change. She won’t back down. But together they sizzle.

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Just an Illusion: Side A on Kindle

Just an Illusion: Side A by D. Kelly: Bestselling author Amelia Greyson has been hired by the world’s biggest band to write their farewell story. Bastards and Dangerous aka BAD, are retiring after ten years of touring. Sexy front men, Noah and Sawyer Weston are fraternal twins and extremely taken with Amelia. Amelia is no stranger to touring or musicians and is eager to keep her past hidden. She doesn’t want the demons in her closet to spoil this tour for her, but the Weston brothers have other plans.

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Stage Left on Kindle

Stage Left by Ali Parker: Ethan could have any woman he wants, except that the one he wants is not sure that a Hollywood super star is who she wants as a partner. Riley will make Ethan work harder than ever before. He will also have to show how sincere he is. Will their past experiences keep them apart or force them to trust each other?

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Fallen Angel: Part 1 on Kindle

Fallen Angel: Part 1 by Tracie Podger: A mafia romance with a difference. When Brooke Stiles meets Robert Stone she steps into a world she has only ever seen in a movie. This is a story about an extraordinary woman who meets a remarkable man and has to discover if she is strong enough to take on his life.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Shadow of Time: Dark Dreams on Kindle

Shadow of Time: Dark Dreams by Jen Minkman: When do dreams erupt into reality? After Hannah, vacationing in Arizona, meets handsome Josh from the Navajo reservation, she experiences disturbingly vivid nightmares about the Navajo nation’s past — a riveting tale blending romance, suspense, and paranormal mystery

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Defender Dragon on Kindle

Defender Dragon by Zoe Chant: This dragon will set your heart on fire! He’s a lonely dragon prince who’d rather be a bodyguard, bound by honor to marry a princess he doesn’t love. She’s a free-spirited American backpacker who loses a shoe at a ball. Fate made them mates. But to find their destined love, they’ll have to overcome deadly plots and even deadlier assassins. Blending action, humor, fascinating mythology and sizzling romance, this book is a must-read for fans of Terry Bolryder, T. S. Joyce, and Celia Kyle!

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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The Savage Series Boxed Set: Books 1-3 on Kindle

The Savage Series Boxed Set: Books 1-3 by Tamara Rose Blodgett: A NYT bestselling author brings you an original tale of 19th century Victorian America, where an epic romance between a princess and a fated, forbidden Alpha male unfolds despite every obstacle thrown in their way. This series is perfect for fans of The Outlander and the Black Dagger Brotherhood series.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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The Naughty Sister on Kindle

The Naughty Sister by Sadie May: Meet the Kappa’s newest housemate, Rachel. She is perfect by day and wicked by night. She’s followed the rules her entire life and never went outside the lines. When she rushes at the sorority she thinks the girls are just like her but it turned out that some were dirty girls and she wants to be one too. She pursues her hot professor and his sexy teaching assistant. She wants them both… at the same time and will do almost anything to get them.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Betrayal on Kindle

Betrayal by Aleatha Romig: A chance meeting with off the chart chemistry allows Alexandria Collins to experience life like never before. Nox Demetri, a mysterious sexy alpha, is just the man for the job. What will happen when the week is over and real life intervenes? Will Alexandria, aka Charli, survive the betrayal? Book 1 of the Infidelity series: Is it really cheating if you’re doing it to yourself?

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Bad Sons on Kindle

Bad Sons by Oliver Tidy: David Booker returns home to the south coast of England for a holiday. When he arrives home ready for his retreat, he finds that his family has gone missing without a trace. Will he be able to find them and unravel the mystery in the face of great danger? Deadly new mystery, Bad Sons, is the first in the best-selling and utterly gripping Booker and Cash Series.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Beaches and Bodies on Kindle

Beaches and Bodies by Nic Roberts: After inheriting her grandfather’s Bed and Breakfast, Ally Wescott moves to the sleepy coastal village of Westford Bay. Unlike London, the quiet and peacful atmosphere is a welcoming change, but part of her misses her busy life back home, because just how exciting can life be in a place where all the locals know each other? She’s about to find out. A body of a woman washes up on the beach by her B&B and with the rekindled relationships of her childhood friends, Lewis and Fran, she sets out to uncover the murder. Who was she? How did it happen? And most importantly… who killed her?

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Big Numbers on Kindle

Big Numbers by Jack Getze: Smart-mouthed stockbroker Austin Carr is divorced, down on his luck and desperate. Austin has plenty of enemies — but can he figure out which one is trying to kill him? A witty and cleverly constructed read!

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Celtic Ties: The Lizzy O'Malley Mysteries (Book 2) on Kindle

Celtic Ties: The Lizzy O’Malley Mystery Series (Book 2) by Kelly Running: Lizzy O’Malley travels to Ireland on a quest to discover a psychic relative, but she also finds herself tangled up in the age-old troubles between Catholics and Protestants. Unsure of which side of the conflict her heritage places her, Lizzy dodges bullets, explosions and speeding cars to survive.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Surviving the Collapse on Kindle

Surviving the Collapse by James Hunt: What happens when all means of transportation and communication suddenly vanish? What happens when the only person you can rely on is yourself and there is no one to call for help? Captain Kate Hillman is faced with those answers after an EMP sends New York City and it’s nine million residents, back into the stone age.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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101 People to Kill Before I Die on Kindle

101 People to Kill Before I Die by Anthony O’Connor: Brian Samuals has less than six months to live. A lot of people have upset him over the years so he decides that if he goes, they go first. He sets off on a killing spree of epic proportions. Early on he saves a beautiful stripper, Natasha, from Russian thugs and she joins in with him. He is not too careful who he kills, so before long everyone is after them: the Russian Mob, the Chinese Mob, the CIA, the SAS, every cop in Australia. As the violence and the mayhem escalates it becomes increasingly difficult to see this ending well for Brian or Natasha.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Bankland on Kindle

Bankland by Stephen Cole: In a race against time, a legendary FBI agent is forced to rob three banks in three hours or never see his daughter again. Thriller fans that love classic movies like Speed and Taken will be taken on an adrenaline ride in Bankland!

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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The Lafayette Campaign on Kindle

The Lafayette Campaign by Andrew Updegrove: America is coming into another election year and someone is hacking the vote. Cybersecurity super sleuth, Frank Adversego must find the Black Hats who are trying to steal the presidential election and stop them before they do.

This book is Free on September 20, 2017

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Enjoy An Exclusive Sneek Peek Of: Release by Patrick Ness!

Release  
Adam Thorn doesn't know it yet, but today will change his life.

Between his religious family, a deeply unpleasant ultimatum from his boss, and his own unrequited love for his sort-of ex, Enzo, it seems as though Adam's life is falling apart. At least he has two people to keep him sane: his new boyfriend (he does love Linus, doesn't he?) and his best friend, Angela.

But all day long, old memories and new heartaches come crashing together, throwing Adam's life into chaos. The bindings of his world are coming untied one by one; yet in spite of everything he has to let go, he may also find freedom in the release.

LEARN MORE
 


1

THE YOKE



ADAM WOULD HAVE
to get the flowers himself.

His mom had enough to do, she said; she needed them this morning, pretty much right now if the day wasn’t going to be a total loss; and in the end, Adam’s attendance at this little “get-together” with his friends tonight may or may not hinge on his willingness/success in picking up the flowers and doing so without complaint.

Adam argued—quite well, he thought, without showing any overt anger—that his older brother, Marty, was the one who’d run over the old flowers; that he, Adam, also had a ton of things to do today; and that new chrysanthemums for the front path weren’t exactly high in the logical criteria for attendance at a get-together he’d already bargained for—because nothing was free with his parents, not ever— by chopping all the winter’s firewood before even the end of August. Nevertheless, she had, in that way of hers, turned it into a decree: he would get the flowers or he wouldn’t go tonight, especially after that girl got killed.

“Your choice,” his mom said, not even looking at him.

It’s only the Yoke, Adam thought, getting behind the wheel of his car. And the Yoke isn’t forever. Still, he needed a few deep breaths before he started the engine.

At least it was early. The late summer Saturday stretched ahead, with its hours to fill, hours he had filled with a schedule of things (he was a scheduler): he needed to go for a run; he had a few hours’ stock-taking to do at the Evil International Mega-Conglomerate; he had to help his dad at the church; he had to stop by Angela’s work to make sure the pizzas were still on schedule for the party—

Morning, his phone buzzed in his lap.

He smiled in a small way. There was that today, too.

Morning, he typed back. Wanna buy flowers?

Is that code?

He smiled again and backed out of the driveway. Fine, let go of the anger, because what a day ahead! What fun it promised! What laughs! What drinks and food and friends and sex! What a stab in the heart at the end of it because the party was a going-away one! Someone was going away. Adam wasn’t sure whether he wanted them to go away or not.

What a day ahead.

What time are you coming by? asked his phone.

Around 2? he typed back at a stop sign.

The reply was a thumbs-up emoji.

He pulled out of his wooded neighborhood onto the wooded road into town. “Wooded” in fact described everything within fifty miles; it was the overwhelming feature of the town of Frome, indeed the overwhelming feature of the state of Washington. Take it as a given, a sight so often seen it became invisible.

Adam thought about two o’clock this afternoon. There was so much happiness to be had there. So much secret happiness.

And yet, a sinking of the stomach, too . . .

No, stop that. He was looking forward to it. Absolutely. Yes. In fact, think about—

In fact, yes, that.

Another stop sign. Blood is flowing places, he messaged. Engorging things.

The reply was two thumbs-up emojis.

So consider Adam Thorn, as he pulls out onto the farther main road—wooded, naturally—the one that leads to the garden center, the one with ever-increasing traffic, even at this early hour on a Saturday. Adam Thorn, born almost but not quite eighteen years ago in the hospital ten miles along this same road. The farthest from here he’s been in his life is when his family went on a fun-free driving holiday to Mount Rushmore. He didn’t even get to go on the mission trip to Uruguay with his father, mother, and Marty when Adam was in the sixth grade. Afterward, his dad had made it sound like a nightmare of mud and evangelical-resistant locals, but Adam—deemed too young and sentenced to three weeks of four-thirty suppers with Grandpa John and Grandma Pat—couldn’t help but feel that wasn’t the point.

Twelve more months, he thought, and the Yoke is off. Senior year started in just over a week.

After that, the sky.

For Adam Thorn wants to get away. Adam Thorn longs to leave, with an ache in his gut so acute it feels like vertigo. Adam Thorn wishes he was going away with the person going away at the end of tonight’s going-away party.

Well, maybe he does.

Adam Thorn. Blanched blond, tall, bulky in a way that might be handsome but is only just starting to properly agree with gravity. A-student, fighting for the college of his choice, fighting for college at all as the money troubles that are supposed to be passing don’t seem to be doing so, not helped by pointless purchases of chrysanthemums because “preachers’ houses have to look a certain way,” but he is focused on a goal, focused on what will get him the hell out of Frome, Washington.

Adam Thorn, keeper of secrets.

His phone rang as he pulled into the garden center. “Everyone’s up early today,” he answered as he parked.

“How many times do I have to tell you I’m not everyone?” Angela grumped.

Everyone is everyone. Whole point of ‘everyone.’”

“The whole point of everyone is for them to constantly do stupid things while we—not everyone—make fun of them for it and feel superior.”

“Why are you up?”

“Why else? The chickens.”

“The chickens are every reason for everything. They’ll rule us one day.”

“They rule us now. Why are you up?”

“Replacement flowers. For my mom’s garden of punishment.”

“You are so going to need therapy.”

“They don’t believe in it. If you can’t pray it away, it’s not a real problem.”

“Your parents. I’m amazed they’re letting you go tonight. Especially after Katherine van Leuwen.”

Katherine van Leuwen was the girl who was killed, which seemed impossible with a name so strong. She’d gone to Adam’s school, a year ahead, but he didn’t know her. And okay, so, fine, she had been murdered last week at the same lake where the get-together was planned (Adam had never used the word “party” with his parents as that would have closed discussion immediately), but the girl’s killer, her much older boyfriend, had been caught, had confessed, and was awaiting sentencing. She had always hung out with the meth heads and it was meth her boyfriend was amped up on when he killed her, raving about—of all things—goats, according to an equally methed witness. Angela, Adam’s closest friend, raged against anyone’s even slight suggestion that Katherine van Leuwen had brought it on herself.

“You don’t know,” she’d nearly shout at whoever. “You don’t know what her life was like, you don’t know what addiction is like. You have no idea what goes on inside another person’s head.”

That was certainly true, and thank God for that, in the case of Adam’s parents.

“They think it’s a quote get-together with three or four of my friends to say good-bye to Enzo,” he said now.

“That sentence is factually true.”

“While at the same time omitting much.”

“Also true. When pizzas? Because, pizzas.”

“I’ve got a run to do, then work, then I’m seeing Linus at two, and I have to help my dad set up for church tomorrow–”

“Dad and church post-coitus with Linus? You dirty boy.”

“I was thinking seven? Then we could go straight to the party. ”

“Get-together.”

“There will be together to get, yes.”

“Seven. Good. I need to speak to you.”

“About what?”

“Stuff. Don’t worry. And now chickens. Because, chickens.”

Angela’s family had a working farm. She swore they’d adopted her from Korea because it was cheaper than hiring a laborer for the livestock. This wasn’t true, even Angela knew it; Mr. and Mrs. Darlington were unobtrusively decent, always good to Adam, always giving him an implicitly safe place to get away from those parents of his, even if they were too kind to say such a thing out loud.

“When is it that you’ve got my back again, Adam?” Angela asked, in their usual farewell.

He grinned. “Always. Until the end of the world.”

“Oh, yeah. That’s right.” She hung up.

He got out of his car into the early morning sunshine. The lot was nearly full at a little past eight. Serious gardeners around here, getting ready for the approaching fall. He stopped a minute under the sky, only cleared of trees for the parking lot but still: open sky. He closed his eyes, felt the sun on his eyelids.

He breathed.

The Yoke wasn’t even his word. It was Biblical. It was his dad’s. Big Brian Thorn. Former professional football player—three seasons as a tight end for the Seahawks before the shoulder surgery—now longtime head preacher at The House Upon The Rock, Frome’s second-largest evangelical church. “Until you leave my house,” he’d bellowed right into Adam’s face, “you are under my Yoke.” Adam’s car had been taken away for a month that time. For missing curfew by ten minutes.

He breathed again, then went inside for chrysanthemums.

JD McLaren was working the flower department. They had world literature and chemistry together. “Hey, Adam,” he said, with his usual plump friendliness.

“Hey, JD,” Adam said. “I didn’t even know you guys opened this early.”

“They saw how many people were lined up at the drive-thru Starbucks at five every morning and thought there was business they were missing out on.”

“They’re probably right. I need chrysanthemums.”

“Bulbs? Wrong time of year to plant those.”

“I need the full, blooming flowers. My brother flattened the ones bordering our driveway. My mother had a stroke.”

“Oh, my God!”

“She didn’t really have a stroke, JD.”

“Oh. Okay.”

“But I need to procure them or be denied social occasions.”

“You mean Enzo’s thing tonight?”

“I do. You going?”

“Yeah. I heard there’s going to be kegs because his parents are European and don’t care if we drink.”

“Angela and I are bringing pizzas from her work.”

“Better and better. Does it matter what color chrysanthemums?”

“Probably, but as she didn’t specify, I have the chance to blame her if they’re wrong.”

“I’ll get you the most garish.”

“And maybe . . .”

JD waited. Adam couldn’t quite meet his eye. “Maybe not the most expensive?”

“Not a problem, Adam,” JD said, seriously, and headed off into the massive field of flower pallets. Those were all in dirt, to be planted into your own gardens, but the garden center had a cooler of cut flowers, too, if you needed a bouquet. Adam wandered over to it, his brain idly moving through the day ahead, coupled with a song he was presently unaware of even humming.

A red rose, alone in its plastic bucket. He reached for it, though it didn’t really register in his consciousness until it was in his hands. A single red rose. Could he buy it? Was that something that was okay? That boys did? If it was for a girl, obviously, yes, but if it was for . . .

He had no rules for this. Which was liberating some of the time because that meant there were none to obey, not even with Linus. But sometimes a guide or history or a long-established literature would have been useful. Could he buy a rose? And give it? How would Linus take it? Did everyone else in the world know the answer except him?

If it was even Linus he gave it to.

He placed the pad of his right thumb onto one of the rose’s thorns—which, along with “crown of,” was one of the two “jokes” people told about his last name, never making anyone laugh but themselves—and slowly but firmly pressed. It pierced the skin and in the quickness of the drop of blood that flowed there, he saw—



—an entire world, fast as a gasped breath, of trees and green, of water and woods, of a figure that followed in the darkness, of mistakes made, of loss, of grief—



Adam blinked and put his bloody thumb to his lips. It was gone. Like a dream. Like vapor. Leaving behind only a feeling of disquiet and the tang of blood on his tongue.

When JD returned, Adam bought the rose. It was only two bucks.



She wakes, suddenly, to the smell of blood, of roses, as if her heart has been pricked by a thorn. She is drenched. Has she walked up from the water’s edge? Has she stepped out of the water itself?

She doesn’t know. There was flurry, there was rush, there was release—

And then a snag, as if on that thorn in her heart, a drop of blood pearling itself . . .

She sits up and the water pours off her like she passed through a waterfall seconds before. But the shore is dry, as shores go, the mud beneath her damp but firm. She runs her palm over it, like she is mystified by it, and maybe she is. It is coarse under her fingertips. She pinches a bit between her thumb and index finger, bringing it to her nose, inhaling deeply. Rich, peaty, the smell of earth, but not the source of the blood scent.

But then why would it be? she thinks, of a sudden. She is surrounded by wild rosebushes, she knows this, she doesn’t know how, but she does. She is surrounded by thorns—

And the scent shimmers away, like a voice heard before waking.

She stands, still dripping into the newly formed puddle at her feet. This dress is hers, she thinks. This dress is not hers, she thinks. The contradiction is true. It is patterned floral, light, tasteful, a young woman’s dress but either ironically retro or actually from another time.

Do I wear dresses? she thinks.

Yes. No.

There are pockets in the dress, which would seem to mark it out as very old-fashioned, but they’re distended, stretched, heavy. She reaches for the weight inside each and pulls out two solid bricks, dense enough to drag her down.

To drown her.

She stares at them for the longest while.

She drops the bricks. They each bounce once on the mud.

“Death is not the end,” she speaks aloud.

What? What was that? What does that even mean? She puts a hand over her mouth as if to keep it from speaking again, holding the words in.

A song. It’s a song. She feels the tune humming itself in her diaphragm, a melody emerging, words that she knows. A song for funerals, gravesides. Or perhaps one only written to sound so, perhaps done with the same irony that wove this dress.

She closes her eyes against the sun breaking in the trees. She sees the veins and capillaries on the insides of her eyelids, red as murder.

She breathes.

Then she vomits up more water than her stomach could possibly contain. It is only water, no bile or food, clear in the cataract that rushes from her mouth. She eventually has to kneel from the force of it, until the overwhelmed puddle beneath her opens a channel to the lake.

Finally, there is no more. She pants, gathering herself. When she stands again, her hair, her skin, her dress, are all dry, not a hint of dampness anywhere.

She breathes once again.

“I will find you,” she says, and on bare feet, she begins to walk.


Behind the rosebushes, the faun watches her go. After a moment, he follows, worried.

 

The Flirtation (Submissive #10) by Tara Sue Me

 

 

 

 

 

Author: Tara Sue Me

Title: The Flirtation

Series: Submissive

Cover Rating:

Book Rating:

 

Buy This Book:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lynne has not wanted for anything since she began working as Nathaniel and Abby's nanny--until the night they invite her to a group BDSM meeting. The abrupt breakup she had with her last Dom made her turn her back on the lifestyle, but now she's ready to dive back in. When she starts chatting on online BDSM message boards, she's shocked to discover Simon, her former Dom, is a frequent poster--and even more shocked at herself when she creates a secret identity and strikes up a conversation.

After messaging with a mysterious submissive online, Simon forms an immediate connection. Lynne and Simon's D/s relationship grows in intensity, but can their relationship survive after the truth is exposed, and Lynne's identity is laid bare?

 

 

 

 

Catfished but in reverse? The Flirtation wasn't a favorite of mine. Having to trick your ex lover into being with you when things already fell apart is kinda sad, and trying to be someone you aren't to make them happy when they aren't fully engaging in what it is you're both supposedly into wasn't enough reason for me to have Lyn and Simon brought together again. The sex was okay but I didn't feel any engagement on either side from either of them for any of it to take place which kinda bummed me out but I don't really think it fully captured the feel and genuine relationship of a true DOM or SUB. 

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a print copy in exchange for an honest review from Penguin Publishing.

All thoughts, comments and ratings are my own.

If any of Krissy's Bookshelf Reviews has been helpful please stop by to like my post or leave a comment to let me know what you think. I love hearing from you!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

 

 

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The Final Score (Play-by-Play #13) by Jaci Burton

 

 

 

 

Author: Jaci Burton

Title: The Final Score

Series: Play-by-Play

Cover Rating:

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Buy This Book:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nathan Riley is ready to follow in the footsteps of his famous football player father. He’s been drafted as quarterback for his dad’s former team, and his sports future is bright. When his friend Mia Cassidy moves to the same city, their years-long friendship suddenly sparks hot, reminding him of the one night they had together in college that he can never forget. 

Like Nathan, Mia is from a sports dynasty family and embarking on an incredible new career—as founder of her own sports management company. Her friendship with Nathan means everything to her, and tossing sex into the mix again could jeopardize it all. But the chemistry between them has always sizzled, and it isn’t long before Mia realizes she wants more with Nathan than just late-night talks and pizza. 

Passion has a funny way of changing the rules, and soon Nathan and Mia realize that to win it all, they’ll have to make an unexpected play for love.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don't judge me for the three stars I gave the book I'd actually give the book four stars but the three stars is because of me. I would have loved this book so much more if I didn't already know who Nathan is.

For readers who have already read the Play by Play series you'll recognize the fact that Nathan Riley is the child of Mick and Tara Riley from book one, while Mia - Nathan's love interest is Mia Cassidy child of Grant and Katrina Cassidy in book nine. That's where I got snagged. I felt so odd reading about Nathan and Mia being intimate because in my mind here I am thinking that even though they're grown up that these are their babies and my mind got stuck on that. I felt like I shouldn't be reading about them, that I shouldn't see this part of their being adults because in my mind I wasn't ready for them to grow up so soon.

That doesn't prevent The Final Score or Nathan from scoring big with little Mia who isn't so little anymore but in my mind I'm still stuck on them being my previous fav's kids. Oy!

Fun. witty and very entertaining I just wasn't ready for our babies to grow up so soon! :)

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a print copy in exchange for an honest review from Penguin Publishing.

All thoughts, comments and ratings are my own.

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Dark Legacy (Dark #27) by Christine Feehan

 

 

 

 

Author: Christine Feehan

Title: Dark Legacy

Series: Dark

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In a beautiful compound hidden away from the world, Emeline Sanchez tries to blunt the pain that has wracked her body ever since her terrifying ordeal in the labyrinth beneath the city—when she was forced to exchange blood with an evil master vampire.

Now, it’s his voice that haunts her...that calls to her in the dark...that never lets her rest. And while the children that she helped to free from his clutches struggle to heal, watched over by their Carpathian protectors, Emeline knows one thing: She must sacrifice herself to keep them all from harm.

 

 

 

 

Dark Legacy is actually book 31 of the Dark Series and continues where we left off from Dark Carousel with Emeline sacrificing herself to the big bad dark Drag for a relationship she isn't so thrilled to be in despite being a victim puts herself back in that place for her own good and the good of the others.

We continue the new mix up that the bad guys aren't really bad guys anymore and that the real bad guys are evil or assumed to be evil must be conquered through love which is brought in by the women who don't actually do a whole lot or serve much of a purpose other than to empower the men who don't really fight anymore.

There's a lot of old dogs learning new tricks, men waiting for their child brides to grow up so that they can mate with them and be whole, crazy cameos, and some ackward not so thrilling circumstances that put it all in motion. Whats the most obvious is that despite this series being so long in installments Feehan obviously doesn't plan on stopping any time soon. This book spends a lot of time building up connecting her worlds and expanding them for more future series and installments but over all it was an okay read.

Warning: Dark Legacy contains continued topics of forced sexual interactions/ rape / dominance of women and children.

 

 

 

Until next time book lovers...

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews received a print copy from Berkley Publishing.

All thoughts, comments and ratings are my own.

If any of Krissy's Bookshelf Reviews has been helpful please stop by to like my post or leave a comment to let me know what you think. I love hearing from you!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

 

 

Krissys Bookshelf Reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Krissys Bookshelf Reviews has a QR code for your phone!

 

Krissy's bookshelf: read

Reaper's Stand
Archangel's Shadows
To Love a King
Touch a Dark Wolf
Gray Bishop
The Viscount's Christmas Temptation
The Second Chance Hero
Loving Him Off the Field
Only Enchanting
Final Lap
Hunt the Jackal
Linger
Before You Break
Priestess Dreaming
Scandal And The Duchess
Hunters
Rival
Sci-Fi Nights: Alpha Bad Boys & Wild Girls of Futuristic Romance
Frayed
Love Bites


Krissy's favorite books ยป

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