Celebrate The Bard with Bill Bryson, be transported to the Civil War in the Bregdan Chronicles and read short novels by best selling authors Stephen King and Jodi Picoult in our latest edition of Free & Cheap Reads.
“William Shakespeare, the most celebrated poet in the English language, left behind nearly a million words of text, but his biography has long been a thicket of wild supposition arranged around scant facts. With a steady hand and his trademark wit, Bill Bryson sorts through this colorful muddle to reveal the man himself.
Bryson documents the efforts of earlier scholars, from today’s most respected academics to eccentrics like Delia Bacon, an American who developed a firm but unsubstantiated conviction that her namesake, Francis Bacon, was the true author of Shakespeare’s plays. Emulating the style of his famous travelogues, Bryson records episodes in his research, including a visit to a bunkerlike room in Washington, D.C., where the world’s largest collection of First Folios is housed.
Bryson celebrates Shakespeare as a writer of unimaginable talent and enormous inventiveness, a coiner of phrases (“vanish into thin air,” “foregone conclusion,” “one fell swoop”) that even today have common currency. His Shakespeare is like no one else’s—the beneficiary of Bryson’s genial nature, his engaging skepticism, and a gift for storytelling unrivaled in our time.” – Amazon
“A preacher is found brutally murdered in a Tennessee motel room.
A beautiful, mysterious young girl is accused.
In this bestselling debut, criminal defense lawyer Joe Dillard has become jaded over the years as he’s tried to balance his career against his conscience. Savvy but cynical, Dillard wants to quit doing criminal defense, but he can’t resist the chance to represent someone who might actually be innocent. His drug-addicted sister has just been released from prison and his mother is succumbing to Alzheimer’s, but Dillard’s commitment to the case never wavers despite the personal troubles and professional demands that threaten to destroy him.
“Pratt’s richly developed characters are vivid and believable, especially the strong Southern women who fight their male-dominated culture from behind a facade of vulnerability in this brilliantly executed debut.” — Publisher’s Weekly
“It’s Scott Turow and Grisham… The opening chapter is maybe the most compelling I’ve read in a decade.” – Ken Bruen
Smart and sophisticated, with a plot twist that will leave you shaking your head in wonder, “An Innocent Client” — the first in the acclaimed Joe Dillard series — will also leave you begging for more.” – Amazon
“Ten thousand years ago, a single alien super-ship survived a desperate battle. The vessel’s dying crew set the AI on automatic to defend the smashed rubble of their planet. Legend has it the faithful ship continues to patrol the empty battlefield, obeying its last order throughout the lonely centuries.
In the here and now, Earth needs a miracle. Out of the Beyond invade the New Men, stronger, faster and smarter than the old. Their superior warships and advanced technology destroy every fleet sent to stop them. Their spies have infiltrated the government and traitors plague Earth’s military.
Captain Maddox of Star Watch Intelligence wonders if the ancient legend could be true. Would such an old starship be able to face the technology of the New Men?
On the run from killers, Maddox searches for a group of talented misfits. He seeks Keith Maker, a drunken ex-strikefighter ace, Doctor Dana Rich the clone thief stuck on a prison planet and Lieutenant Valerie Noonan, the only person to have faced the New Men in battle and survived to tell about it.
Maddox has to find a place hidden in the Beyond and bring back a ship no one can enter. If he fails, the New Men will replace the old. If he succeeds, humanity might just have a fighting chance…” – Amazon
“Carrie Cromwell comes of age as the dark clouds of the Civil War swallow the country. Born with a fiery spirit and a strong mind, she finds herself struggling between the common wisdom of the South and the truth she has discovered.
The activities of the Underground Railroad and her close friendships with the Cromwell Plantation slaves create difficult choices. But when her decisions put her at odds with her heritage, and challenge her dreams, will she be able to give up all that is precious to her?
This first book of The Bregdan Chronicles historical fiction series will pull you in and never let you go. You’ll experience the Civil War era (and all the years to come) through the eyes of both White and Black, free & slave, Southern & Northern – and you’ll fall in love with every character.” – Amazon
“Winner of the Pulitzer Prize: Lanny Budd faces the unstoppable tide of Nazi terror in the third installment of Upton Sinclair’s monumental saga of twentieth-century world history
In the wake of the 1929 stock market crash, Lanny Budd’s financial acumen and his marriage into great wealth enable him to continue the lifestyle he has always enjoyed. But the devastation the collapse has wrought on ordinary citizens has only strengthened Lanny’s socialist ideals—much to the chagrin of his heiress wife, Irma, a confirmed capitalist.
In Germany to visit relatives, Lanny encounters a disturbing atmosphere of hatred and jingoism. His concern over the growing popularity of the Nazi Party escalates when he meets Adolf Hitler, the group’s fanatical leader, and the members of his inner circle. But Lanny’s gravest fear is the threat a national socialist government poses to the German Jewish family of Hansi, the musician husband of Lanny’s sister, Bess—a threat that will impel the international art dealer to risk his wealth, his future, even his life in a courageous attempt to rescue his loved ones from a terrible fate.
Winner of the 1943 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, Dragon’s Teeth brilliantly captures the nightmarish march toward the Second World War. An astonishing mix of history, adventure, and romance, the Lanny Budd Novels are a testament to the breathtaking scope of Upton Sinclair’s vision and his singular talents as a storyteller.” – Amazon
“The Green Mile, Stephen King’s #1 New York Times bestselling novel, was first published twenty years ago in six original paperback installments. Inspiration for the Oscar-nominated film starring Tom Hanks about an innocent man on death row, The Green Mile is now available for the first time in e-serial form.Two Dead Girls is Volume One.
Welcome to Cold Mountain Penitentiary, home to the Depression-worn men of E Block. Convicted killers all, each awaits his turn to walk the Green Mile—the prison’s death row. This is the story, told by former guard Paul Edgecombe, of what happened there in 1932 when an unusual inmate named John Coffey arrives. Condemned for a crime terrifying in its violence and shocking in its depravity, he has the body of a giant and the mind of a child. But there’s something about Coffey that makes Paul question if this man could have committed that crime. He is a rare, gentle spirit along the Green Mile.” – Amazon
“Leaving Home brings together three, previously published short pieces, each dealing with a variation on the theme of leaving home. The first, “Weights and Measures,” deals with the tragic loss of a child; the second is a non-fiction letter Picoult wrote to her eldest son as he left for college; and, “Ritz” tells the story of a mother who takes the vacation all mothers need sometime.” – Amazon
“In this international bestseller, Donna Woolfolk Cross brings the Dark Ages to life in all their brutal splendor and shares the dramatic story of a woman whose strength of vision led her to defy the social restrictions of her day.
For a thousand years her existence has been denied. She is the legend that will not die –- Pope Joan, the ninth-century woman who disguised herself as a man and rose to become the only female ever to sit on the throne of St. Peter. Now in this riveting novel, Cross paints a sweeping portrait of an unforgettable heroine who struggles against restrictions her soul cannot accept.
Brilliant and talented, young Joan rebels against medieval social strictures forbidding women to learn. When her brother is brutally killed during a Viking attack, Joan takes up his cloak–and his identity–and enters the monastery of Fulda. As Brother John Anglicus, Joan distinguishes herself as a great scholar and healer. Eventually, she is drawn to Rome, where she becomes enmeshed in a dangerous web of love, passion, and politics. Triumphing over appalling odds, she finally attains the highest office in Christendom–wielding a power greater than any woman before or since. But such power always comes at a price . . . ” – Amazon
“In her enthralling debut, Gilly Macmillan explores a mother’s search for her missing son, weaving a taut psychological thriller as gripping and skillful as The Girl on the Train and The Guilty One.
In a heartbeat, everything changes…
Rachel Jenner is walking in a Bristol park with her eight-year-old son, Ben, when he asks if he can run ahead. It’s an ordinary request on an ordinary Sunday afternoon, and Rachel has no reason to worry—until Ben vanishes.
Police are called, search parties go out, and Rachel, already insecure after her recent divorce, feels herself coming undone. As hours and then days pass without a sign of Ben, everyone who knew him is called into question, from Rachel’s newly married ex-husband to her mother-of-the-year sister. Inevitably, media attention focuses on Rachel too, and the public’s attitude toward her begins to shift from sympathy to suspicion.
As she desperately pieces together the threadbare clues, Rachel realizes that nothing is quite as she imagined it to be, not even her own judgment. And the greatest dangers may lie not in the anonymous strangers of every parent’s nightmares, but behind the familiar smiles of those she trusts the most.
Where is Ben? The clock is ticking…” – Amazon
“From Gone, Baby, Gone to Mystic River to Shutter Island to The Given Day, the phenomenal Dennis Lehane has proven himself to be one of the most versatile and exciting novelists working in America today—whether he’s breaking new ground with uniquely inventive psychological suspense, redefining the detective story, or bringing a bygone era to life with sweeping and masterful historical fiction. He’s back with Live by Night, an epic, unflinching tale of the making and unmaking of a gangster in the Prohibition Era of the Roaring Twenties.
Meticulously researched and artfully told, Live by Night is the riveting story of one man’s rise from Boston petty thief to the Gulf Coast’s most successful rum runner, and it proves again that the accolades New York Times bestseller Lehane consistently receives are well deserved. He is indeed, “a master” (Philadelphia Inquirer) whose “true literary forefathers include John Steinbeck as well as Raymond Chandler” (Baltimore Sun). And, “Boy, does he know how to write” (Elmore Leonard).” – Amazon
“In A CRY OF HONOR (Book #4 in the Sorcerer’s Ring), Thor has returned from The Hundred as a hardened warrior, and now he must learn what it means to battle for his homeland, to battle for life and death. The McClouds have raided deep into MacGil territory—deeper than ever before in the history of the Ring—and as Thor rides into an ambush, it will fall on his head to fend off the attack and save King’s Court.
Godfrey has been poisoned by his brother by a very rare and potent poison, and his fate lies in Gwendolyn’s hands, as she does whatever she can to save her brother from death.
Gareth has fallen deeper into a state of paranoia and discontent, hiring his own tribe of savages as a personal fighting force and giving them Silver Hall—ousting The Silver and causing a rift in King’s Court that threatens to blow up into a civil war. He also schemes to have the fierce Nevaruns take Gwendolyn away, selling her off in marriage without her consent.
Thor’s friendships deepen, as they journey to new places, face unexpected monsters and fight side by side in unimaginable battle. Thor journeys to his hometown and, in an epic confrontation with his father, he learns a great secret of his past, of who he is, who his mother is—and of his destiny. With the most advanced training he’s ever received from Argon, he begins to tap powers he didn’t know he had, becoming more powerful each day. As his relationship with Gwen deepens, he returns to King’s Court in the hopes of proposing to her—but it may already be too late.
Andronicus, armed with an informer, leads his million-man Empire army to once again attempt to breach the Canyon and crush the Ring.
And just as things seem like they can’t get any worse at King’s Court, the story ends with a shocking twist.
Will Godfrey survive? Will Gareth be ousted? Will King’s Court split in two? Will the Empire invade? Will Gwendolyn end up with Thor? And will Thor finally learn the secret of his destiny?
With its sophisticated world-building and characterization, A CRY OF HONOR is an epic tale of friends and lovers, of rivals and suitors, of knights and dragons, of intrigues and political machinations, of coming of age, of broken hearts, of deception, ambition and betrayal. It is a tale of honor and courage, of fate and destiny, of sorcery. It is a fantasy that brings us into a world we will never forget, and which will appeal to all ages and genders. At 85,000 words, it is the longest of all the books in the series!
All 17 books in the series are now also available!” – Amazon
“Paisley Ray books are not your typical fiction. A young woman’s plan for an art history degree turns into an outrageous series of misadventures in this laugh-out-loud romp about a girl who enrolls in a southern college during the height of the crazy era that was the 1980’s. This collection crosses genres of chick lit, mystery, romance, humor, and action with the possibility of a corpse or two. To date there are 8 novels in this humorous romantic misadventure mystery series with book #9 due to release spring of 2016.
With freshman year behind her, things look grim for Rachael O’Brien’s summer back home in Canton, where the chances of hooking up with her college crush falls between slim and none.
As if “quality time” working in her father’s restoration shop isn’t tortuous enough, his ditzy, age-inappropriate aerobics-instructor girlfriend moves into their house and tries to bond. Just when things seem maxed-out weird, Rachael’s traveling psychic mom and her new “partner” make a surprise visit, sending life into warp-speed wackadoo. Attempting to convince her estranged mother to return to her old life gets sidelined by the theft of an eccentric client’s painting that unravels a guarded family secret and throws Rachael into the arms of a wanted man. Summer break ignites into an unexpected journey of personal discovery, heartache, and resiliency in Paisley Ray’s SUMMER FLAMBÉ.” – Amazon
“Sexy, seductive and simply delightful. Deanna Chase has worked magic, and I can’t get enough of Jade Calhoun and her adventures on Bourbon Street” – Viv Arend, New York Times bestselling author.
Jade loves her new apartment–until a ghost joins her in the shower.
When empath Jade Calhoun moves into an apartment above a strip bar on Bourbon Street, she expects life to get interesting. What she doesn’t count on is making friends with an exotic dancer, attracting a powerful spirit, and developing feelings for Kane, her sexy landlord.
Being an empath has never been easy on Jade’s relationships. It’s no wonder she keeps her gift a secret. But when the ghost moves from spooking Jade to terrorizing Pyper, the dancer, it’s up to Jade to use her unique ability to save her. Except she’ll need Kane’s help–and he’s betrayed her with a secret of his own–to do it. Can she find a way to trust him and herself before Pyper is lost?” – Amazon