A humongous October TBR (ScreamAthon + Victober)

I found out about the ScreamAthon back in August and I have been *impatiently* waiting ever since. During that time I realized that October also means it is time for Victober and I knew that I still wanted to try to participate in that as well. There is also a readathon happening toward the end of the month (October 12-October 18) that Chantel at Chantel at An Intentional Life is hosting that I want to support. Her and her husband have created their own TBR card game website that I think is fun and I want to support. I also did my normal Romanceopoly rolls but somehow rolled THREE doubles so I have a ton of books for that too. I had already picked a book for every single ScreamAthon prompt so by adding in all these other books, I have basically curated a HUGE stack of books to choose from this month. I feel like this is maybe the best way to approach my reading because there is such a variety between mystery/thrillers, Victorian literature and romance books. I will be sharing my HeyReaderathon TBR closer to the actual date of it starting.

ScreamAthon

A lot of these books will work for multiple prompts but I thought it would be fun to come up with a book for each prompt. At the end of the month, I will see what I managed to read and hopefully will have made at least one bingo!

Wrong #

What should have been a fun-filled, carefree day takes a tragic turn for the worse for one mother when her best friend’s child goes missing in this suspenseful, compulsively readable, and darkly twisted psychological thriller. 

It all started at the school fair…

Charlotte was supposed to be looking after the children, and she swears she was. She only took her eyes off of them for one second. But when her three kids are all safe and sound at the school fair, and Alice, her best friend Harriet’s daughter, is nowhere to be found, Charlotte panics. Frantically searching everywhere, Charlotte knows she must find the courage to tell Harriet that her beloved only child is missing. And admit that she has only herself to blame.

Harriet, devastated by this unthinkable, unbearable loss, can no longer bring herself to speak to Charlotte again, much less trust her. Now more isolated than ever and struggling to keep her marriage afloat, Harriet believes nothing and no one. But as the police bear down on both women trying to piece together the puzzle of what happened to this little girl, dark secrets begin to surface—and Harriet discovers that confiding in Charlotte again may be the only thing that will reunite her with her daughter….

This breathless and fast-paced debut—perfect for fans of Big Little Lies and The Couple Next Door—takes you on a chilling journey that will keep you guessing until the very last page.

Making popcorn

Barista Lana Lewis’s sleuthing may land her in a latte trouble as Tara Lush launches her new Coffee Shop mysteries.

When Lana Lewis’ best — and most difficult — employee abruptly quits and goes to work for the competition just days before the Sunshine State Barista Championship, her café’s chances of winning the contest are creamed. In front of a gossipy crowd in the small Florida town of Devil’s Beach, Lana’s normally calm demeanor heats to a boil when she runs into the arrogant java slinger. Of course, Fabrizio “Fab” Bellucci has a slick explanation for jumping ship. But when he’s found dead the next morning under a palm tree in the alley behind Lana’s café, she becomes the prime suspect.
Even the island’s handsome police chief isn’t quite certain of her innocence. But Lana isn’t the only one in town who was angry with Fabrizio. Jilted lovers, a shrimp boat captain, and a surfer with ties to the mob are all suspects as trouble brews on the beach.
With her stoned, hippie dad, a Shih Tzu named Stanley, and a new, curious barista sporting a punk rock aesthetic at her side, Lana’s prepared to turn up the heat to catch the real killer. After all, she is a former award-winning reporter. As scandal hangs over her beachside café, can Lana clear her name and win the championship — or will she come to a bitter end?

I wanna play a game

A gripping thriller from the international bestselling author Jørn Lier Horst

Twenty-four years ago Katharina Haugen went missing. All she left behind was her husband Martin and a mysterious string of numbers scribbled on a piece of paper. 

Every year on October 9th Chief Inspector William Wisting takes out the files to the case he was never able to solve. Stares at the code he was never able to crack. And visits the husband he was never able to help.

But now Martin Haugen is missing too. 

As Wisting prepares to investigate another missing persons case he’s visited by a detective from Oslo. Adrian Stiller is convinced Martin’s involved in another disappearance of a young woman and asks Wisting to close the net around Martin.

But is Wisting playing cat and mouse with a dangerous killer or a grief-stricken husband who cannot lay the past to rest? 

Set between the icy streets and dark forests of Norway, The Katharina Code is a heart-stopping story of one man’s obsession with his coldest case.

Atmospheric, gripping and suspenseful; this is Nordic Noir at its very best.

Would you settle for pg-13?

The YA thriller of the summer.” —Bustle

For fans of Sadie and Serial, this gripping thriller follows two teens whose lives become inextricably linked when one confesses to murder and the other becomes determined to uncover the real truth no matter the cost.

What happened to Zoe won’t stay buried…

When Anna Cicconi arrives to the small Hamptons village of Herron Mills for a summer nanny gig, she has high hopes for a fresh start. What she finds instead is a community on edge after the disappearance of Zoe Spanos, a local girl who has been missing since New Year’s Eve. Anna bears an eerie resemblance to Zoe, and her mere presence in town stirs up still-raw feelings about the unsolved case. As Anna delves deeper into the mystery, stepping further and further into Zoe’s life, she becomes increasingly convinced that she and Zoe are connected—and that she knows what happened to her.

Two months later, Zoe’s body is found in a nearby lake, and Anna is charged with manslaughter. But Anna’s confession is riddled with holes, and Martina Green, teen host of the Missing Zoe podcast, isn’t satisfied. Did Anna really kill Zoe? And if not, can Martina’s podcast uncover the truth?

Inspired by Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, Kit Frick weaves a thrilling story of psychological suspense that twists and turns until the final page.

Sydney Prescott: the final girl

It’s a local legend. No one is sure if this “Camp Slaughter” place is real or not. But a group of college kids renting out a cabin deep in the woods of Pennsylvania will soon realize the truth. They’ll realize the danger, too. Or rather, the cannibal out in the woods will bring the danger to them…

Gale Weathers

From the award-winning author of Quicksand , a gripping legal thriller that follows one woman’s conflicted efforts to overturn what may be a wrongful conviction. 

I’m giving you a chance to achieve every lawyer’s dream, said Sophia Weber’s old professor. Freeing an innocent man.

Thirteen years ago, a fifteen-year-old girl was murdered. Doctor Stig Ahlin was sentenced to life in prison. But no one has forgotten the brutal crime. Ahlin is known as one of the most ruthless criminals.

When Sophia Weber discovers critical flaws in the murder investigation, she decides to help Ahlin. But Sophia’s doing her utmost to get her client exonerated arouses many people’s disgust. And the more she learns, the more difficult her job becomes. What kind of man is her client really? What has he done? And will she ever know the truth?

Deputy Dewey

Yasuko Hanaoka is a divorced, single mother who thought she had finally escaped her abusive ex-husband Togashi. When he shows up one day to extort money from her, threatening both her and her teenaged daughter Misato, the situation quickly escalates into violence and Togashi ends up dead on her apartment floor. Overhearing the commotion, Yasuko’s next door neighbor, middle-aged high school mathematics teacher Ishigami, offers his help, disposing not only of the body but plotting the cover-up step-by-step. 

When the body turns up and is identified, Detective Kusanagi draws the case and Yasuko comes under suspicion. Kusanagi is unable to find any obvious holes in Yasuko’s manufactured alibi and yet is still sure that there’s something wrong. Kusanagi brings in Dr. Manabu Yukawa, a physicist and college friend who frequently consults with the police. Yukawa, known to the police by the nickname Professor Galileo, went to college with Ishigami. After meeting up with him again, Yukawa is convinced that Ishigami had something to do with the murder. What ensues is a high level battle of wits, as Ishigami tries to protect Yasuko by outmaneuvering and outthinking Yukawa, who faces his most clever and determined opponent yet.

Randy: rules to abide by

*This is also the #ReadWithCBTB book for October

First published in 1959, Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House has been hailed as a perfect work of unnerving terror. It is the story of four seekers who arrive at a notoriously unfriendly pile called Hill House: Dr. Montague, an occult scholar looking for solid evidence of a “haunting”; Theodora, the lighthearted assistant; Eleanor, a friendless, fragile young woman well acquainted with poltergeists; and Luke, the future heir of Hill House. At first, their stay seems destined to be merely a spooky encounter with inexplicable phenomena. But Hill House is gathering its powers—and soon it will choose one of them to make its own.

Don’t blame the movies

*Upcoming Netflix adaptation

The heart-pounding debut from the creator of the hit Scandinavian television show The Killing.

If you find one, he’s already found you.

A psychopath is terrorizing Copenhagen.

His calling card is a “chestnut man”—a handmade doll made of matchsticks and two chestnuts—which he leaves at each bloody crime scene.

Examining the dolls, forensics makes a shocking discovery—a fingerprint belonging to a young girl, a government minister’s daughter who had been kidnapped and murdered a year ago.

A tragic coincidence—or something more twisted?

To save innocent lives, a pair of detectives must put aside their differences to piece together the Chestnut Man’s gruesome clues.

Because it’s clear that the madman is on a mission that is far from over.

And no one is safe.

Billy Loomis

Lisa lives for her daughter Ava, her job, and her best friend Marilyn, but when a handsome client shows an interest in her, Lisa starts daydreaming about sharing her life with him too. Maybe she’s ready now. Maybe she can trust again. Maybe it’s time to let her terrifying secret past go. Then her daughter rescues a boy from drowning and their pictures are all over the news for everyone to see. Lisa’s world explodes, and she finds everything she has built threatened. Not knowing whom she can trust, it’s up to her to face her past to save what she holds dear.

Stab

You Let Me In delivers a stunning tale from debut author Camilla Bruce, combining the sinister domestic atmosphere of Gillian Flynn’s Sharp Objects with the otherwordly thrills of Neil Gaiman’s The Ocean at the End of the Lane.

Cassandra Tipp is dead…or is she?

After all, the notorious recluse and eccentric bestselling novelist has always been prone to flights of fancy–everyone in town remembers the shocking events leading up to Cassie’s infamous trial (she may have been acquitted, but the insanity defense only stretches so far).

Cassandra Tipp has left behind no body–just her massive fortune, and one final manuscript.

Then again, there are enough bodies in her past–her husband Tommy Tipp, whose mysterious disembowelment has never been solved, and a few years later, the shocking murder-suicide of her father and brother.

Cassandra Tipp will tell you a story–but it will come with a terrible price. What really happened, out there in the woods–and who has Cassie been protecting all along? Read on, if you dare…

Mrs. Loomis: good ole fashioned revenge

Sweden’s most notorious serial killer.
Jurek Walter was shot and killed years ago. The police moved on and managed to forget the darkness that had tainted their lives.

Has come back from the dead.
But now someone is leaving a trail of broken bodies across Sweden and the clues all point to Walter. Detective Joona Linna is convinced his worst nightmare is becoming a reality: the man who tore apart his family has returned to finish the job.

He doesn’t just kill you. He buries your loved ones alive.
When Joona’s partner is taken – and locked inside an underground coffin – he finds himself with an impossible choice: leave her to die or walk into the trap set by the only man he ever feared.

Mickey: our little secret

Platform Seven at 4am: Peterborough Railway Station is deserted. The man crossing the covered walkway on this freezing November morning is confident he’s alone. As he sits on the metal bench at the far end of the platform it is clear his choice is strategic – he’s as far away from the night staff as he can get. What the man doesn’t realise is that he has company. Lisa Evans knows what he has decided to do. She knows what he is about to do as she tries and fails to stop him walking to the platform edge.

Two deaths on Platform Seven. Two fatalities in eighteen months – surely they’re connected?

No one is more desperate to understand what connects them than Lisa Evans herself. After all, she was the first of the two to die…

Sober sister

At a university in Reykjavík, the body of a young German student is discovered, his eyes cut out and strange symbols carved into his chest. Police waste no time in making an arrest, but the victim’s family isn’t convinced that the right man is in custody. They ask Thóra Gudmundsdóttir, an attorney and single mother of two, to investigate. It isn’t long before Thóra and her associate, Matthew Reich, uncover the deceased student’s obsession with Iceland’s grisly history of torture, execution, and witch hunts. But there are very contemporary horrors hidden in the long, cold shadow of dark traditions. And for two suddenly endangered investigators, nothing is quite what it seems . . . and no one can be trusted.

Rules of the sequel

Siglufjorour: an idyllically quiet fishing village in Northern Iceland, where no one locks their doors–accessible only via a small mountain tunnel.

Ari Thor Arason: a rookie policeman on his first posting, far from his girlfriend in Reykjavik–with a past that he s unable to leave behind.

When a young woman is found lying half-naked in the snow, bleeding and unconscious, and a highly esteemed, elderly writer falls to his death in the local theater, Ari is dragged straight into the heart of a community where he can trust no one, and secrets and lies are a way of life.

Past plays tag with the present and the claustrophobic tension mounts, while Ari is thrust ever deeper into his own darkness–blinded by snow, and with a killer on the loose.

Taut and terrifying, Snowblind is a startling debut from the extraordinary new talent Ragnar Jonasson.

Joel the cameraman

The electrifying number one New York Times best-selling authors of An Anonymous Girl and The Wife Between Us return with a brand new novel of psychological suspense.

Shay Miller wants to find love, but it eludes her. She wants to be fulfilled, but her job is a dead end. She wants to belong, but her life is increasingly lonely.

Until Shay meets the Moore sisters. Cassandra and Jane live a life of glamorous perfection, and always get what they desire. When they invite Shay into their circle, everything seems to get better. Shay would die for them to like her. She may have to.

Headshot, just in case

In this wry take on the post-apocalyptic horror novel, a pandemic has devastated the planet. The plague has sorted humanity into two types: the uninfected and the infected, the living and the living dead. 
Now the plague is receding, and Americans are busy rebuild-ing civilization under orders from the provisional govern-ment based in Buffalo. Their top mission: the resettlement of Manhattan. Armed forces have successfully reclaimed the island south of Canal Street–aka Zone One–but pockets of plague-ridden squatters remain. While the army has eliminated the most dangerous of the infected, teams of civilian volunteers are tasked with clearing out a more innocuous variety–the “malfunctioning” stragglers, who exist in a catatonic state, transfixed by their former lives. 
Mark Spitz is a member of one of the civilian teams work-ing in lower Manhattan. Alternating between flashbacks of Spitz’s desperate fight for survival during the worst of the outbreak and his present narrative, the novel unfolds over three surreal days, as it depicts the mundane mission of straggler removal, the rigors of Post-Apocalyptic Stress Disorder, and the impossible job of coming to grips with the fallen world. 
And then things start to go wrong. 
Both spine chilling and playfully cerebral, “Zone One” bril-liantly subverts the genre’s conventions and deconstructs the zombie myth for the twenty-first century.

The rules don’t apply

The second book in the #1 internationally bestselling Joona Linna series, The Nightmare finds Joona teaming up with a national security agent to solve two murders and take down a network of arms dealers before they can kill again. 

One summer night, police discover the lifeless body of a young woman on an abandoned pleasure boat. Forensics indicate that she drowned, but her clothes are dry and the boat is still afloat. The next day, a man is found hanging in his completely empty apartment. It seems like a suicide, but how did he kill himself with no furniture to climb on? Detective Joona Linna is called in to investigate, and he soon finds a surprising connection: arms trafficking. Because of the potential tie to terrorism, Joona is forced to join forces with Saga Bauer, a detective with the Swedish Security Police To stop the bloodshed, the two must find a way to get into the heads of dangerous arms dealers, but what they find there will shake them to their very cores.

Stab 3: movie magic

Every year, the people of the Protectorate leave a baby as an offering to the witch who lives in the forest. They hope this sacrifice will keep her from terrorizing their town. But the witch in the forest, Xan, is kind and gentle. She shares her home with a wise Swamp Monster named Glerk and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon, Fyrian. Xan rescues the abandoned children and deliver them to welcoming families on the other side of the forest, nourishing the babies with starlight on the journey. 

One year, Xan accidentally feeds a baby moonlight instead of starlight, filling the ordinary child with extraordinary magic. Xan decides she must raise this enmagicked girl, whom she calls Luna, as her own. To keep young Luna safe from her own unwieldy power, Xan locks her magic deep inside her. When Luna approaches her thirteenth birthday, her magic begins to emerge on schedule–but Xan is far away. Meanwhile, a young man from the Protectorate is determined to free his people by killing the witch. Soon, it is up to Luna to protect those who have protected her–even if it means the end of the loving, safe world she’s always known.

Maureen Prescott

Simmering in Patagonian myth, The Tenth Girl is a gothic psychological thriller with a haunting twist.

At the very southern tip of South America looms an isolated finishing school. Legend has it that the land will curse those who settle there. But for Mavi—a bold Buenos Aires native fleeing the military regime that took her mother—it offers an escape to a new life as a young teacher to Argentina’s elite girls.

Mavi tries to embrace the strangeness of the imposing house—despite warnings not to roam at night, threats from an enigmatic young man, and rumors of mysterious Others. But one of Mavi’s ten students is missing, and when students and teachers alike begin to behave as if possessed, the forces haunting this unholy cliff will no longer be ignored.

One of these spirits holds a secret that could unravel Mavi’s existence. In order to survive she must solve a cosmic mystery—and then fight for her life.

Woodsboro

Quinn Maybrook just wants to make it until graduation. She might not make it to morning.

Quinn and her father moved to tiny, boring Kettle Springs to find a fresh start. But ever since the Baypen Corn Syrup Factory shut down, Kettle Springs has cracked in half. On one side are the adults, who are desperate to make Kettle Springs great again, and on the other are the kids, who want to have fun, make prank videos, and get out of Kettle Springs as quick as they can.

Kettle Springs is caught in a battle between old and new, tradition and progress. It’s a fight that looks like it will destroy the town. Until Frendo, the Baypen mascot, a creepy clown in a pork-pie hat, goes homicidal and decides that the only way for Kettle Springs to grow back is to cull the rotten crop of kids who live there now.

Jill: world-wide sensation

THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!
THE INSTANT USA TODAY BESTSELLER!

Two women. Two Flights. One last chance to disappear.

Claire Cook has a perfect life. Married to the scion of a political dynasty, with a Manhattan townhouse and a staff of ten, her surroundings are elegant, her days flawlessly choreographed, and her future auspicious. But behind closed doors, nothing is quite as it seems. That perfect husband has a temper that burns as bright as his promising political career, and he’s not above using his staff to track Claire’s every move, making sure she’s living up to his impossible standards. But what he doesn’t know is that Claire has worked for months on a plan to vanish.

A chance meeting in an airport bar brings her together with a woman whose circumstances seem equally dire. Together they make a last-minute decision to switch tickets ― Claire taking Eva’s flight to Oakland, and Eva traveling to Puerto Rico as Claire. They believe the swap will give each of them the head start they need to begin again somewhere far away. But when the flight to Puerto Rico goes down, Claire realizes it’s no longer a head start but a new life. Cut off, out of options, with the news of her death about to explode in the media, Claire will assume Eva’s identity, and along with it, the secrets Eva fought so hard to keep hidden.

The Last Flight is the story of two women―both alone, both scared―and one agonizing decision that will change the trajectory of both of their lives.

Stab-a-thon

Seraphine Mayes and her twin brother Danny were born in the middle of summer at their family’s estate on the Norfolk coast. Within hours of their birth, their mother threw herself from the cliffs, the au pair fled, and the village thrilled with whispers of dark cloaks, changelings, and the aloof couple who drew a young nanny into their inner circle.

Now an adult, Seraphine mourns the recent death of her father. While going through his belongings, she uncovers a family photograph that raises dangerous questions. It was taken on the day the twins were born, and in the photo, their mother, surrounded by her husband and her young son, is beautifully dressed, smiling serenely, and holding just one baby.

Who is the child and what really happened that day?

One person knows the truth, if only Seraphine can find her.

Scream: the tv series

THE INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER! 

For readers of Kara Thomas and Karen McManus, an addictive, twisty crime thriller with shades of Serial and Making a Murderer about a closed local murder case that doesn’t add up, and a girl who’s determined to find the real killer–but not everyone wants her meddling in the past.

Everyone in Fairview knows the story.

Pretty and popular high school senior Andie Bell was murdered by her boyfriend, Sal Singh, who then killed himself. It was all anyone could talk about. And five years later, Pip sees how the tragedy still haunts her town.

But she can’t shake the feeling that there was more to what happened that day. She knew Sal when she was a child, and he was always so kind to her. How could he possibly have been a killer?

Now a senior herself, Pip decides to reexamine the closed case for her final project, at first just to cast doubt on the original investigation. But soon she discovers a trail of dark secrets that might actually prove Sal innocent . . . and the line between past and present begins to blur. Someone in Fairview doesn’t want Pip digging around for answers, and now her own life might be in danger.

This is the story of an investigation turned obsession, full of twists and turns and with an ending you’ll never expect.

Victober

Katie’s Challenge: Read a Victorian book that equates to your favourite modern genre

‘When you looked down into the stone, you looked into a yellow deep that drew your eyes into it so that they saw nothing else’

The Moonstone, a yellow diamond looted from an Indian temple and believed to bring bad luck to its owner, is bequeathed to Rachel Verinder on her eighteenth birthday. That very night the priceless stone is stolen again and when Sergeant Cuff is brought in to investigate the crime, he soon realizes that no one in Rachel’s household is above suspicion. Hailed by T. S. Eliot as ‘the first, the longest, and the best of modern English detective novels’, The Moonstone is a marvellously taut and intricate tale of mystery, in which facts and memory can prove treacherous and not everyone is as they first appear.

Sandra Kemp’s introduction examines The Moonstone as a work of Victorian sensation fiction and an early example of the detective genre, and discusses the technique of multiple narrators, the role of opium, and Collins’s sources and autobiographical references.

Lucy’s challenge: Read a Victorian diary or collection of letters

Anne Lister defied the role of womanhood seen in the novels of Jane Austen: she was bold, fiercely independent, a landowner, industrialist, traveler, and a lesbian. She kept extensive diaries of her life and loves, written partly in code. Made up of Greek letters mingled with other symbols of her own devising, Anne referred to the code as her “crypthand,” and the use of it allowed her the freedom to describe her intimate life in great detail. Her diaries have been edited by Helena Whitbread, who spent years decoding and transcribing them.

Kate’s challenge: Read a new to you book and/or short story by a favourite Victorian author

*This is also the group book where we are reading pretty much a chapter a day with a few expectations.

Following the tremendous popular success of Jane Eyre, which earned her lifelong notoriety as a moral revolutionary, Charlotte Brontë vowed to write a sweeping social chronicle that focused on “something real and unromantic as Monday morning.” Set in the industrializing England of the Napoleonic wars and Luddite revolts of 1811-12, Shirley (1849) is the story of two contrasting heroines. One is the shy Caroline Helstone, who is trapped in the oppressive atmosphere of a Yorkshire rectory and whose bare life symbolizes the plight of single women in the nineteenth century. The other is the vivacious Shirley Keeldar, who inherits a local estate and whose wealth liberates her from convention.

A work that combines social commentary with the more private preoccupations of Jane Eyre, Shirley demonstrates the full range of Brontë’s literary talent. “Shirley is a revolutionary novel,” wrote Brontë biographer Lyndall Gordon. “Shirley follows Jane Eyre as a new exemplar but so much a forerunner of the feminist of the later twentieth century that it is hard to believe in her actual existence in 1811-12. She is a theoretic possibility: what a woman might be if she combined independence and means of her own with intellect. Charlotte Brontë imagined a new form of power, equal to that of men, in a confident young woman [whose] extraordinary freedom has accustomed her to think for herself….Shirley [is] Brontë’s most feminist novel.”

Readers’ challenge: Read a Victorian book from a previous Victober TBR that you didn’t get to, or one you’ve been meaning to read for ages

*I haven’t read this since high school and I don’t remember a lot of it so I would love to finally reread it

Orphaned as a child, Jane has felt an outcast her whole young life. Her courage is tested once again when she arrives at Thornfield Hall, where she has been hired by the brooding, proud Edward Rochester to care for his ward Adèle. Jane finds herself drawn to his troubled yet kind spirit. She falls in love. Hard.

But there is a terrifying secret inside the gloomy, forbidding Thornfield Hall. Is Rochester hiding from Jane? Will Jane be left heartbroken and exiled once again?

General challenge: Read a Victorian book while wearing something Victorian/Victorian-esque 

The Stephen West MKAL starts on October 9 and we are knitting a mystery shawl so I am going to count it towards this. The shawl won’t be finished until November (or longer) but I will be sort of wearing it as I knit… right?

Romanceopoly

First, I’m going to share September’s picks because if you remember, they were having trouble with their website when I did my picks last month. I did end up figuring it out soon into the month but I don’t think I ever officially shared them on my blog. These are all done with the moon pack.

Emergency Services (Read a romance where the h/H is a firemen or police officer)

The third installment of Annabeth Albert’s Hotshots series—the emotions and intensity of Chicago Fire with the raw, natural elements of Man vs. Wild .

When their career paths bring two high school sweethearts together again, the forest isn’t the only thing ablaze…

Fire behavior specialist Luis Riviera goes where his job takes him. But when he’s assigned to an arson investigation in Central Oregon—the place he left his broken heart twenty years ago—he’s afraid of being burned all over again.

Tucker Ryland had planned to join his first love, Luis, in LA after high school graduation, but life got in the way. Now a fire management expert and a divorced father of teen twins, Tucker’s thrown for a loop when he finds himself working side by side with his Luis, now all grown up and more intriguing than ever.

Though consumed by a grueling fire season and family responsibilities, the two men discover their bond has never truly broken. Tentative kisses turn to passionate nights. But smoking sheets aside, old hurts and new truths stand in the way of this time being the start of forever.

Past Eaves (read a historical fiction)

*This comes out December 29, 2020

A princess in disguise is forced to live with a rogue in order to protect her from danger in this fun, sexy regency romance.

Bow Street agent Sebastien Wolff, Earl of Mowbray, doesn’t believe in love―until a passionate kiss with a beautiful stranger in a brothel forces him to reconsider. When the mysterious woman is linked to an intrigue involving a missing Russian princess, however, Seb realizes her air of innocence was too good to be true.

Princess Anastasia Denisova has been hiding in London as plain ‘Anna Brown’. With a dangerous traitor hot on her trail, her best option is to accept Wolff’s offer of protection―and accommodation―at his gambling hell. But living in such close quarters, and aiding Wolff in his Bow Street cases, fans the flames of their mutual attraction. If Anya’s true identity is revealed, does their romance stand a chance? Could a princess ever marry a rogue?

Passion Place (read an erotic romance with a menage or reverse harem)

Meg Sanders enjoyed her wild night with a prince and his bodyguard—but now she’s moving on. She has enough problems without borrowing the kind of trouble Theo brings just by being who he is. But no matter how determined she is to leave that night a fond memory, she hasn’t seen the last of Theo and Galen…

Galen Mikos’s life boils down to one goal. Keep Theo alive. But as long as Theo draws breath, he’s a threat to the powers that have taken over Thalania—and anyone they associate with runs the risk of becoming a target, too. Galen will never forgive himself if they let their selfish desire for Meg puts her in danger. But it might already be too late…

Theo Fitzcharles might be an exiled prince, but he doesn’t intend to stay that way. He’s only concerned with one thing—clearing his mother’s name and reinstating himself as Crown Prince of Thalania. There’s no room in that plan for distraction, especially when it makes him forget himself the way Meg does. But after spending one perfect night with her and his best friend, Theo has no intention of leaving her alone. 

Even if it damns all three of them in the process.

_______

Now we are onto October’s Romanceopoly rolls. A couple of them will look familiar since I just landed on them last month as well.

Drive In Movie (read a romance that develops from a tryst)

Life is a mixed bag for Piper Calloway.

On the one hand, she’s a twenty-nine-year-old VP at her dad’s multibillion-dollar real estate development firm, and living the high single life with her two best friends in a swanky downtown penthouse. On the other hand, she’s considered a pair of sexy legs in a male-dominated world and constantly has to prove her worth. Plus, she’s stuck seeing her narcissistic ex-fiancé—a fellow VP—on the other side of her glass office wall every day.

Things get exponentially more complicated for Piper when she runs into Kyle Miller—the handsome new security guard at Calloway Group Industries, and coincidentally the first love of her life.

The guy she hasn’t seen or heard from since they were summer camp counsellors together. The guy from the wrong side of the tracks. The guy who apparently doesn’t even remember her name.

Piper may be a high-powered businesswoman now, but she soon realizes that her schoolgirl crush is not only alive but stronger than ever, and crippling her concentration. What’s more, despite Kyle’s distant attitude, she’s convinced their reunion isn’t at all coincidental, and that his feelings for her still run deep. And she’s determined to make him admit to them, no matter the consequences. 

Emergency Services (Read a romance where the h/H is a firemen or police officer)

They say one action doesn’t define you. 
I killed a man. Stabbed him in the neck and licked the blood off my lips after I did it. 
Still, one action doesn’t define you. 
I could have called anyone. My father, the Prez of The Fallen MC, our family lawyer, my best friend, Lila, or my brother, King. 
I didn’t. 
Instead, I called Lionel Danner, the police officer renowned for taking down the Nightstalkers MC. The man who had been my father’s arch nemesis for decades. The man who hated everything I stood for. A man who had disappeared from my life without explanation three years ago. 
I called him. 
And maybe one action doesn’t define you, but killing a bad man and calling in the good changed my life and it sure as hell changed his. 

The third book in the Fallen Men series. A standalone featuring Harleigh Rose and Officer Lionel Danner.

Nice View (friends to lovers)

Strike One – My mother named me Theodore after her favorite chipmunk. 

Not cool, Mom. 

I‘ve spent most of my life answering to Teddy, because I couldn’t make Theo work. 

Except for here. College. The place where all bets are off, and I’ve managed to redeem myself. 
There’s only one problem, my new roommate, Troy, is football royalty and looks like he stepped off the set of an Abercrombie shoot. 

Doesn’t matter, I cook a mean breakfast for his panty parade, and we get along well. 
And anyway, this year I got the girl. And she’s perfect. 

That’s right. Theodore Houseman, former band geek, now marching band rock star has finally landed the girl of his dreams. 

Everything is perfect. 

That is, until Troy takes a good look at her. 

I’m not going down without a fight. As a matter of fact, I’m not going down at all. As glorious as these days may be for my all-star roommate, Laney is my end game. 

I may not know much about play strategy, but I’ve been the good guy my whole life. I’ve been listening and I know exactly what women want. Framed in a picture standing next to me, Troy may seem like Mr. Perfect, but he’s underestimating the guy on the right. 

Spoiler alert: In this story, the underdog is going to win.

Lady Lane (women’s fiction)

Up-and-coming TV anchor Emery Bliss can’t imagine anything more humiliating than the sex tape her ex revenge-posted online. That is, until it causes her to lose her job on top of her self-esteem. Seeking solace—and anonymity—in Silver Springs, Emery isn’t looking to get involved with another man anytime soon. But when she’s thrown back into contact with Dallas Turner, she sees something that his many detractors have missed.

Being home for the holidays and his adoptive mother’s wedding isn’t where mountain climber Dallas feels most comfortable. Thanks to his troubled childhood, he’d rather be on a rock face alone than trying to connect with people. Emery, however, makes him want to overcome his past…somehow.

Both Emery and Dallas had been planning on a quiet, solitary Christmas, but the sparks between them are lighting a fire strong enough to last—possibly forever.

Passion Place (read an erotic romance with a menage or reverse harem)

All my life, I’ve wanted nothing more than to escape my father’s compound. Half human, half vampire, I have none of the perks and all of the weaknesses. Well, my father’s finally found a use for me. He’s sent me to Malachi Zion, the last vampire in his family. My role is to play resident blood bank and, should Malachi knock me up, my father gets access to a whole new bloodline to control. 

No one asks me what I want.

But the longer I spend with Malachi, the more I realize that he’s not the monster I first thought, which makes it harder to resist the heat that flares between us. And then his two friends show up and complicate things exponentially. 

As long as we’re stuck in this house together, I’m a trap just waiting to be sprung. But if we break free, there’s nothing holding these vampires to me… 

In gaining the one thing I want more than anything—my freedom—I might just lose everything. 

CW: Dubious consent, blood play, breeding, abusive parent (father), cliffhanger

Outer Space (read a sci fi with an alien or cyborg)

You’d think being abducted by aliens would be the worst thing that could happen to me. And you’d be wrong. Because now, the aliens are having ship trouble, and they’ve left their cargo of human women – including me – on an ice planet.

And the only native inhabitant I’ve met? He’s big, horned, blue, and really, really has a thing for me…

Autumn (orange, gold, or yellow cover; spooky or Halloween read; has leaves or tress on the cover)

Welcome to Autumnboro, New Hampshire, where the romance is sweet, the lattes are spicy, and more than leaves are about to fall…

After calling off her fall wedding, horror novelist Amy Fox is left with a broken heart, a mega case of writer’s block, and a serious aversion to all things pumpkin spice. When she receives news that her grandfather has broken his wrist driving through a Dunkin Donuts—literally straight through the front windows—five hundred miles away, in her hometown of Autumnboro, New Hampshire, Amy has no choice but to return to check on him. If she doesn’t make sure that he’s back on his feet, Grandpa may be moved into assisted living, and Amy’s beloved childhood home will be put on the market. 

Knowing she must return, Amy worries about the only thing worse than pumpkin spice—a reunion with Kit Parker—her childhood best friend, first love, and entire reason for skipping town in the first place. As the two reconnect, a second chance seems possible…if only Kit weren’t holding on to a secret that just might unravel everything. 

Set against the scenic backdrop of the White Mountains, New Hampshire, Pumpkin Everything is a small town, sweet romance, and the perfect way to kick off the fall season! A pumpkin spice latte wouldn’t hurt, either.

~Cassie

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I'm a SAHM of three boys. I was lucky enough to marry my best friend who is totally ok with my book hoarding tendencies. I have been a lover of books my whole life and it has been such a blessing to be able to share that love with my kids.

One thought on “A humongous October TBR (ScreamAthon + Victober)

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