Award-winning author Julie Lessman tops today’s Buffet with her inspirational debut novel, A Passion Most Pure, Book 1 of her “Daughters of Boston” series.

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This story will carry your heart from the sophisticated streets of Boston to the green hills of Ireland as men go off to war and women long for their return — a tale full of passion, romance, rivalry, and betrayal that will captivate you from the first line. The book won Julie the Holt Medallion Award of Merit for Best First Book and Long Inspirational.

Julie has had a true passion for romance since the tender age of 12. “It happened the moment Scarlett seared Rhett with a look on the winding staircase of Twelve Oaks,” she says. “Suddenly I was a goner, spellbound by the emotional ebb and flow of romantic relationships.”

Julie’s latest book is Love At Any Cost, the first installment in a new series called “The Heart of San Francisco.”

As usual, each book listed here has gone FREE within the past 24 hours, except for the Bargain books in the yellow section below. Warning: Kindle book promotions can end without notice, so before downloading click the link “See Kindle price at Amazon” to verify that the book is still free. (Prices and availability may differ outside USA.)

A Passion Most Pure

Romance > Historical > Religious Fiction
Author: Julie Lessman
A Passion Most Pure (The Daughters of Boston Book #1): A Novel

She’s found the love of her life. Unfortunately, he loves her sister.

As World War I rages across the Atlantic in 1916, a smaller war is brewing in Boston. Faith O’Connor finds herself drawn to an Irish rogue who is anything but right for her. Collin McGuire is brash, cocky, and from the wrong side of the tracks, not to mention forbidden by her father. And then there’s the small matter that he is secretly courting her younger sister. But when Collin’s affections shift, it threatens to tear her proper Boston family apart.

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Through the Wildwood

Fantasy > Magic & Wizards
Author: M. R. Mathias
Through the Wildwood (The Legend of Vanx Malic)

 

A half-zythian bard named Vanx is in chains for bedding the Duchess of Highlake. The Duke wants him dead, but his wife secretly sent their daughter to buy his freedom from the slave markets. This is bad news, for bad things can happen to an ill guarded caravan in the mountains. When the duke’s mercenaries attack to kill the adulterous prisoner all hell breaks loose. Now, the only way Vanx and the Princess of Highlake can escape the duke and his men is if they can somehow make it through the Wildwood, a place that no one has ever returned from before…..

Dragon Isle

Fantasy > Magic & Wizards
Author: M. R. Mathias
Dragon Isle (The Legend of Vanx Malic)

Vanx, Trevin, and Darbon, along with Prince Russet and the crew of the Sea Hawk, sail to Vanx’s homeland to find an old friend who just might know the wyrm lore needed to make their quest to Dragon Isle seem survivable.

Meanwhile Coll and Duke Martin have set their shadowy schemes in motion in Dyntalla where Quazar is keeping the princess from death with all he has.

What will King Oakarm do about Duke Martin’s treachery when he arrives? Will Matty the one-handed whore get her wish? Can two High Wizards of the Royal Order hold off the ogres, and the even darker thing that is seeking the Bloodstone? And what will happen on Dragon Isle, where our hero and his friends have become little more than prey under the revealing light of Aur’s Moon. 

Somewhere to Belong

Christian Fiction > Historical
Author: Judith Miller
Somewhere to Belong (Daughters of Amana Book #1)

Johanna Ilg has lived her entire life in Main Amana, one of the seven villages inhabited by devout Christians who believe in cooperative living, a simple lifestyle, and faithful service to God. Although she’s always longed to see the outside world, Johanna believes her future is rooted in the community. But when she learns a troubling secret, the world she thought she knew is shattered and she is forced to make difficult choices about a new life and the man she left behind.

Berta Schumacher has lived a privileged life in Chicago, and when her parents decide they want a simpler life in Amana, Iowa, she resists. Under the strictures of the Amana villages, Berta’s rebellion reaches new heights. Will her heart ever be content among the plain people of Amana?

TODAY’S BARGAINS……………What’s this?

Very Valentine

Women’s Fiction > Humor
Author: Adriana Trigiani
Regular Price $9.99, Today $1.99
Very Valentine: A Novel

Meet the Roncalli and Angelini families, a vibrant cast of colorful characters who navigate tricky family dynamics with hilarity and brio, from magical Manhattan to the picturesque hills of bella Italia. Very Valentine is the first novel in a trilogy and is sure to be the new favorite of Trigiani’s millions of fans around the world.

In this luscious, contemporary family saga, the Angelini Shoe Company, makers of exquisite wedding shoes since 1903, is one of the last family-owned businesses in Greenwich Village. The company is on the verge of financial collapse. It falls to thirty-three-year-old Valentine Roncalli, the talented and determined apprentice to her grandmother, the master artisan Teodora Angelini, to bring the family’s old-world craftsmanship into the twenty-first century and save the company from ruin.

While juggling a budding romance with dashing chef Roman Falconi, her duty to her family, and a design challenge presented by a prestigious department store, Valentine returns to Italy with her grandmother to learn new techniques and seek one-of-a-kind materials for building a pair of glorious shoes to beat their rivals. There, in Tuscany, Naples, and on the Isle of Capri, a family secret is revealed as Valentine discovers her artistic voice and much more, turning her life and the family business upside down in ways she never expected.

Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules

Short Stories > Anthologies > Humor
Author: David Sedaris
Regular Price $9.99, Today $1.99
Children Playing Before a Statue of Hercules

From the #1 bestselling author of Me Talk Pretty One Day and Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim comes a collection of the short stories David Sedaris loves most. Containing the work of both contemporary and classic writers, this book edited and introduced by Sedaris, gives his legions of fans a glimpse at the writing he finds inspiring — and helps them discover the truth about loneliness, hope, love, betrayal, and certain, but not all, monkeys.

David Sedaris fell in love with short stories while living in Odell, Oregon. Sedaris writes, “When apple-picking season ended, I got a job in a packing plant and gravitated toward short stories, which I could read during my break and reflect upon for the remainder of my shift. A good one would take me out of myself and stuff me back in, outsized, now, and uneasy with the fit.” Featuring such notable writers as Alice Munro, Tobias Wolff, Lorrie Moore, and Joyce Carol Oates, readers will reconnect with classics, as well discover fantastic but lesser-known writers.

Included in CHILDREN PLAYING BEFORE A STATUE OF HERCULES are:

  • Introduction by David Sedaris
  • “Oh, Joseph, I’m So Tired” by Richard Yates
  • “Gryphon” by Charles Baxter
  • “Interpreter of Maladies” by Jhumpa Lahiri
  • “The Garden Party” by Katherine Mansfield
  • “Half A Grapefruit” by Alice Munro
  • “Applause, Applause” by Jean Thompson
  • “I Know What I’m Doing About All the Attention I’ve Been Getting” by Frank Gannon
  • “Where the Door Is Always Open and the Welcome Mat Is Out” by Patricia Highsmith
  • “The Best of Betty” by Jincy Willett
  • “Song of the Shirt, 1941” by Dorothy Parker
  • “The Girl with the Blackened Eye” by Joyce Carol Oates
  • “People Like That Are the Only People Here: Canonical Babbling in Peed Onk” by Lorrie Moore
  • “Revelation” by Flannery O’Connor
  • “In the Cemetery Where Al Jolson Is Buried” by Amy Hempel
  • “Cosmopolitan” by Akhil Sharma
  • “Irish Girl” by Tim Johnston
  • “Bullet in the Brain” by Tobias Wolff
  • Epilogue by Sarah Vowell

Emma’s Secret

Women’s Fiction > Domestic Life
Author: Steena Holmes
Regular Price $9.99, Today $1.99
Emma's Secret: A Novel

For two years, Megan, Peter, and their two older daughters, Alexis and Hannah, dream of nothing but being reunited with the family’s youngest child, Emma, who was kidnapped just before her third birthday. When Emma is miraculously found living with an elderly couple just miles from the family’s home, they are hopeful that her return will heal the wounds her disappearance created.

But Emma is vastly different from the sunny toddler they remember. She barely remembers her parents or her older sisters. She is quiet and withdrawn, and, worst of all, longs for the very people who kidnapped her.

Megan is consumed with bitterness, while Peter works later and later nights in the company of his gorgeous business partner. And in the middle of everything, Megan’s best friend has become suddenly distant and secretive.

Then a chance encounter in town leads to a secret that changes everything again for Emma. And Peter must decide between the happiness of his youngest daughter and the trust of his family.

Heart-Shaped Box

Thrillers > Horror > Ghosts
Author: Joe Hill
Regular Price $9.99, Today $2.99
Heart-Shaped Box

Judas Coyne is a collector of the macabre: a cookbook for cannibals . . . a used hangman’s noose . . . a snuff film. An aging death-metal rock god, his taste for the unnatural is as widely known to his legions of fans as the notorious excesses of his youth. But nothing he possesses is as unlikely or as dreadful as his latest discovery, an item for sale on the Internet, a thing so terribly strange, Jude can’t help but reach for his wallet.

I will “sell” my stepfather’s ghost to the highest bidder. . . .

For a thousand dollars, Jude will become the proud owner of a dead man’s suit, said to be haunted by a restless spirit. He isn’t afraid. He has spent a lifetime coping with ghosts—of an abusive father, of the lovers he callously abandoned, of the bandmates he betrayed. What’s one more?

But what UPS delivers to his door in a black heart-shaped box is no imaginary or metaphorical ghost, no benign conversation piece. It’s the real thing.

And suddenly the suit’s previous owner is everywhere: behind the bedroom door . . . seated in Jude’s restored vintage Mustang . . . standing outside his window . . . staring out from his widescreen TV. Waiting—with a gleaming razor blade on a chain dangling from one bony hand. . . .

Two Graves (Pendergast)

Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
Author: Douglas Preston, Lincoln Child
Regular Price $9.99, Today $2.99
Two Graves (Pendergast)

After his wife, Helen, is brazenly abducted before his eyes, Special Agent Pendergast furiously pursues the kidnappers, chasing them across the country and into Mexico. But then, things go terribly, tragically wrong; the kidnappers escape; and a shattered Pendergast retreats to his New York apartment and shuts out the world.

But when a string of bizarre murders erupts across several Manhattan hotels-perpetrated by a boy who seems to have an almost psychic ability to elude capture-NYPD Lieutenant D’Agosta asks his friend Pendergast for help. Reluctant at first, Pendergast soon discovers that the killings are a message from his wife’s kidnappers. But why a message? And what does it mean?

When the kidnappers strike again at those closest to Pendergast, the FBI agent, filled anew with vengeful fury, sets out to track down and destroy those responsible. His journey takes him deep into the trackless forests of South America, where he ultimately finds himself face to face with an old evil that-rather than having been eradicated-is stirring anew… and with potentially world-altering consequences.

Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America

Politics & Social Sciences > African-American Studies
Author: Gilbert King
Regular Price $9.99, Today $2.99
Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America

Winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction
* Book of the Year (Non-fiction, 2012) The Boston GlobeChristian Science Monitor

 
In 1949, Florida’s orange industry was booming, and citrus barons got rich on the backs of cheap Jim Crow labor. To maintain order and profits, they turned to Willis V. McCall, a violent sheriff who ruled Lake County with murderous resolve. When a white seventeen-year-old Groveland girl cried rape, McCall was fast on the trail of four young blacks who dared to envision a future for themselves beyond the citrus groves. By day’s end, the Ku Klux Klan had rolled into town, burning the homes of blacks to the ground and chasing hundreds into the swamps, hell-bent on lynching the young men who came to be known as “the Groveland Boys.”

And so began the chain of events that would bring Thurgood Marshall, the man known as “Mr. Civil Rights,” and the most important American lawyer of the twentieth century, into the deadly fray. Associates thought it was suicidal for him to wade into the “Florida Terror” at a time when he was irreplaceable to the burgeoning civil rights movement, but the lawyer would not shrink from the fight–not after the Klan had murdered one of Marshall’s NAACP associates involved with the case and Marshall had endured continual threats that he would be next.

Secrets to Die For

Mystery > Police Procedurals
Author: L.J. Sellers
Regular Price $2.99, Today $0.99
Secrets to Die For (A Detective Jackson Mystery)

When young social worker Raina Hughes arrives at a ramshackle trailer outside of town, she’s on a mission to protect a small boy from abusive parents. But when Detective Wade Jackson arrives at the same location hours later, his mission is far grimmer: investigating Raina’s murder.

The victim’s vicious death is a shocking event for laid-back Eugene, Oregon—and even more chilling when one of Jackson’s fellow officers suspects an elusive rapist whose appetite is turning murderous. Jackson thinks he’s got a tight case against the meth-head dad who menaced Raina, but the evidence seems to leave his suspect in the clear—and a homicidal sex offender still on the loose. What Jackson fears is that his new love affair with nurse Kera Kollmorgan may be knocking him off his game. And what he never expects is to find an ally in savvy reporter Sophie Speranza, who may have stumbled on the killer’s shocking motive. But even as Jackson and Sophie team up to tighten the noose, their quarry zeroes in on his next victim—ready to take his twisted game to the next level.

When young social worker Raina Hughes arrives at a ramshackle trailer outside of town, she’s on a mission to protect a small boy from abusive parents. But when Detective Wade Jackson arrives at the same location hours later, his mission is far grimmer: investigating Raina’s murder.

 

Running for My Life: One Lost Boy’s Journey from the Killing Fields of Sudan to the Olympic Games

Sports & Outdoors > Biographies
Author: Lopez Lomong
Regular Price $9.99, Today $2.99
Running for My Life: One Lost Boy's Journey from the Killing Fields of Sudan to the Olympic Games

Running for My Life is not a story about Africa or track and field athletics. It is about outrunning the devil and achieving the impossible faith, diligence, and the desire to give back. It is the American dream come true and a stark reminder that saving one can help to save thousands more.

Lopez Lomong chronicles his inspiring ascent from a barefoot lost boy of the Sudanese Civil War to a Nike sponsored athlete on the US Olympic Team. Though most of us fall somewhere between the catastrophic lows and dizzying highs of Lomong’s incredible life, every reader will find in his story the human spark to pursue dreams that might seem unthinkable, even from circumstances that might appear hopeless.

Words Spoken True

Religious Fiction > Romance
Author: Ann H. Gabhart
Words Spoken True: A Novel

Adriane Darcy was practically raised in her father’s newspaper offices. She can’t imagine life without the clatter of the press and the push to be first to write the news that matters. Their Tribune is the leading paper in Louisville in 1855. Then Blake Garrett, a brash young editor from the North with a controversial new style of reporting, takes over failing competitor the Herald, and the battle for readers gets fierce.

When Adriane and Blake meet at a benefit tea, their surprising mutual attraction is hard to ignore. Still, Blake is the enemy, and Adriane is engaged to the son of a powerful businessman who holds the keys to the Tribune‘s future. Blake will stop at almost nothing to get the story–and the girl. Can he do both before it’s too late?

Lion of Babylon

Christian Fiction > Suspense > Mystery
Author: Davis Bunn
Lion of Babylon (A Marc Royce Thriller Book #1)

Marc Royce works for the State Department on special assignments, most of them rather routine, until two CIA operatives go missing in Iraq–kidnapped by Taliban forces bent on generating chaos in the region. Two others also drop out of sight–a high-placed Iraqi civilian and an American woman providing humanitarian aid. Are the disappearances linked? Rumors circulate in a whirl of misinformation.

Marc must unravel the truth in a covert operation requiring utmost secrecy–from both the Americans and the insurgents. But even more secret than the undercover operation is the underground dialogue taking place between sworn enemies. Will the ultimate Reconciler between ancient enemies, current foes, and fanatical religious factions be heard?

Wings of Glass

Contemporary Fiction
Author: Gina Holmes
Wings of Glass

On the cusp of adulthood, eighteen-year-old Penny Carson is swept off her feet by a handsome farmhand with a confident swagger. Though Trent Taylor seems like Prince Charming and offers an escape from her one-stop-sign town, Penny’s happily-ever-after lasts no longer than their breakneck courtship. Before the ink even dries on their marriage certificate, he hits her for the first time. It isn’t the last, yet the bruises that can’t be seen are the most painful of all.

When Trent is injured in a welding accident and his paycheck stops, he has no choice but to finally allow Penny to take a job cleaning houses. Here she meets two women from very different worlds who will teach her to live and laugh again, and lend her their backbones just long enough for her to find her own.

The Rose of Winslow Street

Religious Fiction > Romance
Author: Elizabeth Camden
Rose of Winslow Street, The

The last thing Libby Sawyer and her father expected upon their return from their summer home was to find strangers inhabiting a house that had been in their family for decades. Widower Michael Dobrescu brought his family from Romania to the town of Colden, Massachusetts with a singular purpose: to claim the house willed to him long ago. Since neither party has any intention of giving up their claim, a fierce legal battle ensues between the two families.

When important documents go missing from the house, Libby suspects Michael is the culprit. Determined to discover the truth behind the stolen papers, Libby investigates, only to find more layers of mystery surrounding Michael and his family. Despite their rivalry, Libby finds herself developing feelings for this man with the mysterious past.

As a decision about the house looms in the courts, Libby must weigh the risks of choosing to remain loyal to her family or give her heart to a man whose intentions and affections are less than certain.

Love Isn’t Supposed to Hurt

Biographies & Memoirs
Author: Christi Paul, Sanjay Gupta
Love Isn't Supposed to Hurt

Like millions of other women, CNN’s Headline News and truTV’s In Session anchor Christi Paul blamed herself for the emotional abuse heaped on her by her first husband, whose violent, profanity-laced tirades left her feeling as though she had no value, no self-worth, and nowhere to turn for help.

Then one day, when Christi was taking refuge in a church parking lot, the verse “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding” popped into her head. In that moment, she realized she did have someplace to turn after all. Holding fast to her faith, Christi began the arduous process of rebuilding her self-image and regaining control of her life.

Now happily remarried and the mother of three girls, Christi feels called to share her story in the hope that other victims will find courage to seek the help they desperately need and deserve.

Written with great candor and poignancy, Love Isn’t Supposed to Hurt chronicles Christi’s personal experience of dealing with emotional abuse and shows how—with God’s help, some unconventional therapy, and the support of family and friends—she was able to break the cycle of abuse, regain her sense of self-worth, and discover what true love is really all about.

Paper Roses

Romance > Historical > Christian Fiction
Author: Amanda Cabot
Paper Roses (Texas Dreams Book #1): A Novel

The future stretches out in front of Sarah Dobbs like the pure blue Texas sky. Leaving the past behind in Philadelphia, mail-order bride Sarah arrives in San Antonio ready to greet her groom, Austin Canfield, a man she has never met but whose letters have won her heart from afar. But there is one problem–he has died. And Sarah cannot go back East.

As Sarah tries to reconcile herself to a future that is drastically changed, Austin’s brother, Clay, struggles with his own muddled plans. Though he dislikes working on the family ranch and longs for a different life, Clay is driven to avenge his brother’s death. But something between them is growing and neither Clay nor Sarah is ready to admit it.

 

… See the rest of today’s Editor’s Picks here on page 2