April Weekly Kindle Haul #4

I can’t believe that we are already at the end of April! This month has flown by. I’m back today with some more great books to share with an emphasis on some free romances.

Kaely Quinn’s talents as an FBI behavior analyst are impossible to ignore, no matter how unorthodox her methods. But when a reporter outs her as the daughter of an infamous serial killer, she’s demoted to field agent and transferred to St. Louis.

When the same reporter who ruined her career claims to have received an anonymous poem predicting a string of murders, ending with Kaely’s, the reporter’s ulterior motives bring his claim into question. But when a body is found that fits the poem’s predictions, the threat is undeniable, and the FBI sends Special Agent Noah Hunter to St. Louis.

Initially resentful of the assignment, Noah is surprised at how quickly his respect for Kaely grows, despite her oddities. But with a brazen serial killer who breaks all the normal patterns on the loose, Noah and Kaely are tested to their limits to catch the murderer before anyone else–including Kaely herself–is killed.

The road to happily ever after has never been more hilarious… or complicated…

Grace Montgomery has a very simple plan. Fly to her younger brother’s wedding, stop the wedding, go home, make partner at her law firm. Almost getting arrested by air marshal Nick O’Connor? Not part of the plan. Neither was puking on him. (Don’t ask.) Finding out he’s her soon-to-be brother-in-law… also a minor setback to her plan. And don’t even get her started on her untimely attraction to the tall, dark, and dead-sexy jerk. 

If Nick had a plan, it wouldn’t include getting involved with a woman as complicated as Grace. It especially wouldn’t include road tripping with her to attend a week of pre-wedding family events. But as it turns out, traveling—and sparring — with the lovely, sharp-witted Grace is the most fun Nick’s had since, well, ever. And their sexual chemistry? Off. The. Charts.

It doesn’t take long for Grace to realize there’s a lot more to her air marshal than a pretty face and a big, um, gun. If she’s not careful, she just might lose her highly prized control — not to mention her heart — to Nick. But before Grace and Nick can set foot on the road to happily ever after, they’ll have to deal with Grace’s meddling ex, a slew of dysfunctional family members, and a contaminated pumpkin bisque (long story)… and that’s all before the end of day two. 

It’s gonna be a long, complicated week…

You Complicate Me is book 1 in the You Complicate Me duet, but both books can be read as a standalones. Book 2, You Wrecked Me, is also now available. This duet is not intended for anyone who doesn’t like characters who cuss, snarky banter, tons of nerdy pop culture references, and all manner of familial silliness. For the rest of you, happy reading!

After a traumatic few years, Leah picks up and moves to the small lake town of Cedarville Ohio. Ready to finally find herself – possibly for the first time – she joins her friends and together they open a new business in town. She never expected to love Cedarville so much nor did she expect her heart to fall for the HOT AS SIN police chief, Brandon. But when someone from her past starts causing problems for her in her new home, she has no choice but to put her trust, and her heart, in Brandon’s hands to keep her and her friends safe. 

Within these pages Mary Oliver collects twenty-six of her poems about the birds that have been such an important part of her life-hawks, hummingbirds, and herons; kingfishers, catbirds, and crows; swans, swallows, and, of course, the snowy owl; among a dozen others-including ten poems original to this volume. She adds two beautifully crafted essays, “Owls,” selected for the Best American Essays series, and “Bird,” one that will surely take its place among the classics of the genre.

*No synopsis since this is the third book in a series.

Aspiring chef Sarah Thomas isn’t a very good liar, but when the opportunity to compete in a prestigious culinary contest presents itself, she jumps at the chance. Too bad the opportunity involves a whopper of a lie. She has to pretend to be engaged to playboy restauranteur Raffe Washburn. 

Raffe Washburn is sick of everyone chalking his success up to his father’s money. He’s desperate to prove he can achieve something on his own. So when his best friend suggests he borrow his culinary student assistant for the couples-only contest he’s all for it. 

It should be easy, right? Pretend to be engaged, cook some meals, and take the prize. 

But things get complicated fast, and they soon find themselves battling a backstabbing competitor, dodging an old enemy bent on seeing them lose, and trying to avoid their own feelings, which are suddenly spiraling out of control. 

Raffe discovers some things are more important than proving himself to his father and he can walk away with something worth a lot more than a trophy… if he can just stand the heat.

From the winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award, her most personal book yet “What good company Mary Oliver is!” the Los Angeles Times has remarked. And never more so than in this extraordinary and engaging gathering of nine essays, accompanied by a brief selection of new prose poems and poems. (One of the essays has been chosen as among the best of the year by THE BEST AMERICAN ESSAYS 1998, another by The Anchor Essay Annual.) With the grace and precision that have won her legions of admirers, Oliver talks here of turtle eggs and housebuilding, of her surprise at an unexpected whistling she hears, of the “thousand unbreakable links between each of us and everything else.” She talks of her own poems and of some of her favorite poets: Poe, writing of “our inescapable destiny,” Frost and his ability to convey at once that “everything is all right, and everything is not all right,” the “unmistakably joyful” Hopkins, and Whitman, seeking through his poetry “the replication of a miracle.” And Oliver offers us a glimpse as well of her “private and natural self—something that must in the future be taken into consideration by any who would claim to know me.”

The mage-marked granddaughter of a ruler of Vaskandar, Ryx was destined for power and prestige at the top of Vaskandran society. But her magic is broken; all she can do is uncontrollably drain the life from everything she touches, and Vaskandar has no place for a mage with unusable powers.

Then, one night, two terrible accidents befall her: Ryx accidentally kills a visiting dignitary in self-defense, activating a mysterious magical artifact sealed in an ancient tower in the heart of her family’s castle.

Ryx flees, seeking a solution to her deadly magic. She falls in with a group of unlikely magical experts investigating the disturbance in Vaskandar—and Ryx realizes that her family is in danger and her domain is at stake. She and her new colleagues must return to the family stronghold to take control of the artifact that everyone wants to claim—before it destroys the world.

Straight out of college, five friends with a dream joined forces to build success. Ten years later, their exclusive fitness club, Flatiron Five Fitness, is the hottest destination in Manhattan. People flock to F5F to get fit, to get lucky, and even, to fall in love. The founding partners have been immune to F5F’s romantic spell—at least, so far…

Tyler McKay has a plan…
And it doesn’t include a serious relationship anytime soon. Between his day job and being a partner at Flatiron 5 Fitness, he’s busy investing in the future. But Ty knows that going stag to his sister’s wedding will encourage the family matchmakers: he needs a fake date, fast, in self-defense. When the one woman who hates him walks into F5F, Ty knows he’s found the perfect candidate—that Shannyn doesn’t play by anyone’s rules just leaves Ty wanting more…

Shannyn Hawke is done with plans and dreams…
She had her whole life mapped out, but it all went wrong. Now, she’s taking care of number one and living in the moment, with no concern for the future. If her college crush wants to trade a fake wedding date for physical satisfaction, Shannyn is in. But just one night proves that Tyler is everything she believes a guy should be, plus he takes it as a challenge to change her mind about him. Shannyn never wants to have her heart broken again, but she’s falling hard and fast. Can she remember that it’s just for show? Or will Tyler convince Shannyn to take a chance on forever again?

Two former best friends return to their college reunion to find that they’re being circled by someone who wants revenge for what they did ten years before—and will stop at nothing to get it—in this shocking psychological thriller about ambition, toxic friendship, and deadly desire.

A lot has changed in the years since Ambrosia Wellington graduated from college, and she’s worked hard to create a new life for herself. But then an invitation to her ten-year reunion arrives in the mail, along with an anonymous note that reads “We need to talk about what we did that night.” 

It seems that the secrets of Ambrosia’s past—and the people she thought she’d left there—aren’t as buried as she’d believed. Amb can’t stop fixating on what she did or who she did it with: larger-than-life Sloane “Sully” Sullivan, Amb’s former best friend, who could make anyone do anything. 

At the reunion, Amb and Sully receive increasingly menacing messages, and it becomes clear that they’re being pursued by someone who wants more than just the truth of what happened that first semester. This person wants revenge for what they did and the damage they caused—the extent of which Amb is only now fully understanding. And it was all because of the game they played to get a boy who belonged to someone else, and the girl who paid the price. 

Alternating between the reunion and Amb’s freshman year, The Girls Are All So Nice Here is a shocking novel about the brutal lengths girls can go to get what they think they’re owed, and what happens when the games we play in college become matters of life and death.

In a flat near Reykjavik city centre, a young man lies dead in a pool of blood although there are no signs of a break-in or any struggle. A woman’s purple shawl, found under the bed, gives off a strong and unusual aroma. A vial of narcotics found in the victim’s pocket among other clues soon lead Erlendur’s colleagues down a trail of hidden violence and psychological brutality, and of wrongs that will never be fully righted.

Desperate men do desperate things. 
When Decker Gabrielli hits rock bottom, he accepts a job as a hired companion at Infidelity. 
Surrendering a year of his life to a woman he’s never met might be the worst idea ever. But money, prestige, and sex are powerful incentives. That is, until the job becomes more than a contractual agreement. 
Hard limits are breached, panties are shredded, and rules are broken. 
In the end, his secret to getting ahead is… her.

Friendship turns into young love, a nasty breakup, and maybe a second chance. Can this billionaire make his great life perfect?

Blake Murphy wants redemption. More than that, he wants a second chance. He’d been avoiding his home town since the day he left for college. Trista Kennedy would be there and he had no idea how he’d face her after the way he’d treated her. But now he’d find out. His high school reunion was coming up and he’d see her then. 

Trista had moved on from Blake. Until she saw him when he came home for their high school reunion. He was handsome, rich, and easy going. He’d only been boyishly good looking in high school. So much had happened in a decade. 

Blake’s old flame – the one who’d come after he’d broken Trista’s heart – was ready to scoop him up again. Trista couldn’t even think about competing with her. She’d never outshine the former cheerleader and constant social butterfly. But she felt something. Yearning. What might have been. Regret. She thought he felt it, too. 

Is there a chance to mend broken relationships in the heat of a small Arizona town after a decade apart? 

My name is Matt Connover. I am a Litigation God. Other lawyers quake before me. Women crawl on their knees just to spend the night in my bed and when I’m finished with them, I walk away without a backward glance. I am well satisfied with my life and there isn’t a damn thing I’d change about it.

That is, until McKayla Dawson came along.

She was meant to be for one night only. But she got under my skin, and now I want her back underneath my body.

It’s torture working with her in my law firm… day in and day out. But I have to think maybe the Fates have intervened to throw us together because she is unlike anyone I’ve ever known, and thus I need to pay careful attention to these Legal Affairs.

****
Confessions of a Litigation God is a stand alone, full length novel. It follows the affair of Matt Connover and McKayla Dawson as told in Legal Affairs. This book is told strictly from Matt’s point of view and has many additional scenes as well as an extended epilogue. You do not need to have read Legal Affairs to enjoy this novel.

Pulitzer Prize-winning poet Mary Oliver presents a personal selection of her best work in this definitive collection spanning more than five decades of her esteemed literary career.

Throughout her celebrated career, Mary Oliver has touched countless readers with her brilliantly crafted verse, expounding on her love for the physical world and the powerful bonds between all living things. Identified as “far and away, this country’s best selling poet” by Dwight Garner, she now returns with a stunning and definitive collection of her writing from the last fifty years. 

Carefully curated, these 200 plus poems feature Oliver’s work from her very first book of poetry, No Voyage and Other Poems, published in 1963 at the age of 28, through her most recent collection, Felicity, published in 2015. This timeless volume, arranged by Oliver herself, showcases the beloved poet at her edifying best. Within these pages, she provides us with an extraordinary and invaluable collection of her passionate, perceptive, and much-treasured observations of the natural world.

A mysterious mansion, a suspicious death, and a cat too smart for its own good…

When Laura Lee took the summer job as a housekeeper at the old Thornberry Estate, she knew it was a creepy place, but she had no idea how creepy. Mrs. Fitzwater warned her to keep her mind on her work and her nose in her own business, but one thing after another leads her astray, between the mansion giving up its puzzles as she goes about her work, fun secrets to share with the clever ladies in her book club who are always up for a mystery, and a cat that seems to know more than she does.

The death of a chauffeur just outside the estate gates changes everything and suddenly creepy turns to deadly as Laura Lee finds herself in the middle of a murder investigation. When the police seem unable to solve the crime, can Laura Lee and her intrepid club find the killer before the killer finds Laura Lee?

After five years of wasting my Journalism Degree writing an advice column, my editor offers me my first real assignment.

Too bad I’ll have to work alongside a Private Investigator from out of town.

Enter Grayson Cole.

The broody and secretive bad boy who took my V-Card eight summers ago then broke my heart.

After years of hating Grayson for leaving without saying goodbye, now I’m the only person who can pose as his girlfriend.

Between the long hours working together and the public displays of affection, it’s getting harder to tell what’s real.

I need to walk away before history repeats itself.

But when Grayson shows up at my door in the middle of the night and tells me why he really came back…

What started out as fake, becomes dangerously real…

An all-new STANDALONE from New York Times bestselling author Julia Kent

It all started with the wrong Help Wanted ad. Of course it did.

I’m a professional fluffer. It’s NOT what you think. I stage homes for a living. Real estate agents love me, and my work stands on its own merits.

Sigh. Get your mind out of the gutter. Go ahead. Laugh. I’ll wait.

See? That’s the problem. My career has used the term “fluffer” for decades. I didn’t even know there was a more… lascivious definition of the term.

Until it was too late. 

The ad for a “professional fluffer” on Craigslist seemed like divine intervention. My last unemployment check was in the bank. I was desperate. Rent was due. The ad said cash paid at the end of the day. The perfect job! 

Staging homes means showing your best angle. The same principle applies in making a certain kind of movie. Turns out a “fluffer” doesn’t arrange decorative pillows on a couch.

They arrange other soft, round-ish objects.

The job isn’t hard. Er, I mean, it is — it’s about being hard. Or, well… helping other people to be hard.

Oh, man…

And that’s the other problem. A man. No, not one of the stars on the movie set. Will Lotham – my high school crush. The owner of the house where we’re filming. Illegally. In a vacation rental.

By the time the cops show up, what I thought was just a great house staging gig turned into a nightmare involving pictures of me with an undressed star, Will rescuing me from an arrest, and a humiliating lesson in my own naivete.

My job turned out to be so much harder than I expected. But you know what’s easier than I ever imagined?

Having all my dreams come true.

Calliope Thorne is a good girl. A straight-A student, a rule follower, and an aspiring ballerina. 

But most of all, she’s a good sister to her four older brothers. 

Brothers whom she loves and adores to pieces. Brothers who love and adore her to pieces in return. 

And who hate just one and one thing only–Reed Jackson. 

Rich, arrogant, and the most popular guy at Bardstown High, Reed is Callie’s brothers’ enemy and she has sworn to stay away from him. 

Until one night when she wanders into the woods and finds herself in his clutches. A villain with pretty gray eyes and a seductive smirk.

Until he asks her to dance for him with a look in those eyes that makes her forget why falling for her brothers’ enemy is a bad idea.

NOTE: This is a 40,000-word prequel novella for A GORGEOUS VILLAIN. The story concludes in A GORGEOUS VILLAIN.

When American resort tycoon Martin Walker travels to England in hopes of acquiring a lonely island off the northeastern coast, he brings his family along for the trip. Only then does he learn the island’s long-abandoned keep carries with it a legacy of terror.

Some say the ghosts of Viking raiders, clad in wolf-skins and drunk on slaughter, still haunt its twisted architecture. Some say the island itself is cursed. An ancient, hateful force slumbers within the windswept rock—and the Walker family has awakened it.

Can anyone escape THE BLACK LAND?

An acclaimed bestseller and international sensation, Patrick Suskind’s classic novel provokes a terrifying examination of what happens when one man’s indulgence in his greatest passion—his sense of smell—leads to murder.

In the slums of eighteenth-century France, the infant Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born with one sublime gift—an absolute sense of smell. As a boy, he lives to decipher the odors of Paris, and apprentices himself to a prominent perfumer who teaches him the ancient art of mixing precious oils and herbs. But Grenouille’s genius is such that he is not satisfied to stop there, and he becomes obsessed with capturing the smells of objects such as brass doorknobs and fresh-cut wood. Then one day he catches a hint of a scent that will drive him on an ever-more-terrifying quest to create the “ultimate perfume”—the scent of a beautiful young virgin. Told with dazzling narrative brilliance, Perfume is a hauntingly powerful tale of murder and sensual depravity.

Using unprecedented, dramatically compelling sleuthing techniques, legendary statistician and baseball writer Bill James applies his analytical acumen to crack an unsolved century-old mystery surrounding one of the deadliest serial killers in American history.

Between 1898 and 1912, families across the country were bludgeoned in their sleep with the blunt side of an axe. Jewelry and valuables were left in plain sight, bodies were piled together, faces covered with cloth. Some of these cases, like the infamous Villasca, Iowa, murders, received national attention. But few people believed the crimes were related. And fewer still would realize that all of these families lived within walking distance to a train station.

When celebrated baseball statistician and true crime expert Bill James first learned about these horrors, he began to investigate others that might fit the same pattern. Applying the same know-how he brings to his legendary baseball analysis, he empirically determined which crimes were committed by the same person. Then after sifting through thousands of local newspapers, court transcripts, and public records, he and his daughter Rachel made an astonishing discovery: they learned the true identity of this monstrous criminal. In turn, they uncovered one of the deadliest serial killers in America.

Riveting and immersive, with writing as sharp as the cold side of an axe, The Man from the Train paints a vivid, psychologically perceptive portrait of America at the dawn of the twentieth century, when crime was regarded as a local problem, and opportunistic private detectives exploited a dysfunctional judicial system. James shows how these cultural factors enabled such an unspeakable series of crimes to occur, and his groundbreaking approach to true crime will convince skeptics, amaze aficionados, and change the way we view criminal history.

The day of my best friend’s wedding, I’m the one rocking the strapless red taffeta and chef’s apron ensemble, running on zero sleep. Being both the event caterer and a bridesmaid is crazy, I know. But, I’m a pro. This is my seventh wedding after all—as bridesmaid, that is. Pretty sure that’s some kind of town record.

Still, no amount of my trademark meticulous planning could’ve possibly prepared me to see him again. The prodigal Doctor Dreamy himself, Mason Stewart. My first (and only) love who disappeared without a word literally the day after proposing to me.

What the heck is he doing back in Bliss River? And how is it at all fair that he looks this good? Also, holy crap, why is he coming this way?

* * * * *

There she is. Somehow even more beautiful than I remember. This overdue apology is one I’ve rehearsed since the day I left, pulverized by my own family, positive I’d never be good enough for the only girl I’ve ever loved. Took a lot of both time and therapy, but I finally managed to fix what they broke. And now I’m here to repair what I broke.

I know Lark. She’ll see this second chance I’m hoping for as a no-strings fling so we can each get closure and move on. Right. Like it’s just that easy. You don’t move on from a woman like Lark. And I’m pretty sure a clothing-optional arrangement will make that feat infinitely more impossible.

Still, it’s a start—a way for Lark to see the man I’ve become. A man who isn’t looking for a fling, but rather, matching rings, kids, the whole nine yards.

Librarian and aspiring PI Mira James has discovered one corpse a month for each of the eleven months she’s lived in Battle Lake, Minnesota. She’d give her left foot to break that streak this April.

But when she stumbles across a disturbing note, and a Battle Lake girl vanishes, she has no choice except to get involved.

She follows the note’s trail and is horrified to discover that it leads to her father, who died 13 years earlier. It’s a race against the clock to crack the secret he carried to his grave in time to save the girl. Meanwhile, chiseled police chief Gary Wohnt is scrutinizing her every move, aching to finally put her behind bars, and Johnny, her sexy boyfriend, is planning a surprise for her. Problem is, she doesn’t know if it’s a marriage proposal or an intervention.

As Mrs. Berns and Mira take on their final case together, Mira discovers it’s more personal than she could have imagined, and that she holds not only the life of the vanished girl but the fate of all Battle Lake in her hands.

April Fools is the twelfth in an ongoing series featuring Mira James, an urban woman with rural Minnesota roots. The books can be read in any order; each novel stands alone.

NYT Bestselling Carrie Ann Ryan continues her Montgomery Ink series with a forbidden romance worth the risk.

Decker Kendrick has kept away from her for years, but now his best friend’s little sister is stepping up the game. No matter how hard he’s tried to stay away from Miranda, once she sets her sights on him, there’s no backing down.

Miranda Montgomery has loved her brother’s best friend for as long as she can remember and won’t walk away until he knows how she feels and what they could have together.

Only once they give in to their temptations, not all is at it seems. Decker’s father is out of jail, and someone from Miranda’s past refuses to stay away. And if he isn’t careful, Decker will lose her before they even have a chance.

In a sprint, every millisecond counts.  
When you’re waiting for love, those milliseconds can feel like eons.  

High school senior Lucas Preston has it all: star of the track team, a scholarship waiting for him, an apartment to himself and a revolving door of girlfriends. He also has an older sister, five younger brothers and a father who relies on him to make sure those brothers don’t kill each other.  
His saving grace? Lois “Laney” Sanders, a girl he started to fall in like with when he was just eleven. 
A girl who became his best friend, his confidant, his courage.  

It took only sixteen clicks and eight seconds for Lucas to realize that his like for Laney had turned into love.   
Eight life-changing seconds.  
It’s also the exact length of time it took to lose her.

Welcome to Three Pines, where the cruelest month is about to deliver on its threat.

It’s spring in the tiny, forgotten village; buds are on the trees and the first flowers are struggling through the newly thawed earth. But not everything is meant to return to life. . . 

When some villagers decide to celebrate Easter with a séance at the Old Hadley House, they are hoping to rid the town of its evil—until one of their party dies of fright. Was this a natural death, or was the victim somehow helped along?

Brilliant, compassionate Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec is called to investigate, in a case that will force him to face his own ghosts as well as those of a seemingly idyllic town where relationships are far more dangerous than they seem.

The Stranger appears out of nowhere, perhaps in a bar, or a parking lot, or at the grocery store. His identity is unknown. His motives are unclear. His information is undeniable. Then he whispers a few words in your ear and disappears, leaving you picking up the pieces of your shattered world.

Adam Price has a lot to lose: a comfortable marriage to a beautiful woman, two wonderful sons, and all the trappings of the American Dream: a big house, a good job, a seemingly perfect life.

Then he runs into the Stranger. When he learns a devastating secret about his wife, Corinne, he confronts her, and the mirage of perfection disappears as if it never existed at all. Soon Adam finds himself tangled in something far darker than even Corinne’s deception, and realizes that if he doesn’t make exactly the right moves, the conspiracy he’s stumbled into will not only ruin lives—it will end them.

Jackson Brodie, ex-military police, ex-Cambridge Constabulary, currently working as a private investigator, makes a highly anticipated return, nine years after the last Brodie, Started Early, Took My Dog.

Jackson Brodie has relocated to a quiet seaside village, in the occasional company of his recalcitrant teenage son and an aging Labrador, both at the discretion of his ex-partner Julia. It’s picturesque, but there’s something darker lurking behind the scenes.

Jackson’s current job, gathering proof of an unfaithful husband for his suspicious wife, is fairly standard-issue, but a chance encounter with a desperate man on a crumbling cliff leads him into a sinister network—and back across the path of his old friend Reggie. Old secrets and new lies intersect in this breathtaking novel by one of the most dazzling and surprising writers at work today.

Now from the mind of a true master of suspense comes the next chapter in Bird Box. This time, Malorie is front and center, and she will confront the dangers of her world head-on.

Twelve years after Malorie and her children rowed up the river to safety, a blindfold is still the only thing that stands between sanity and madness. One glimpse of the creatures that stalk the world will drive a person to unspeakable violence. There remains no explanation. No solution.

All Malorie can do is survive.
But then comes what feels like impossible news. And with it, the first time Malorie has allowed herself to hope. Someone very dear to her, someone she believed dead, may be alive.

Malorie has a harrowing choice to make: to live by the rules of survival that have served her so well, or to venture into the darkness and reach for hope once more.

~Cassie

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