New Books to Read in Literary Fiction | September 15

Literary fiction readers are in for a treat. This week’s latest releases list is full of intriguing reads you won’t want to miss! The new releases list includes so many bestselling authors like Ken Follett, Jude Deveraux, Beatrice Colin, and many more. Enjoy your new literary fiction books. Happy reading!



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New Books to Read in Literary Fiction | September 8

Literary fiction readers are in for a treat. This week’s latest releases list is full of intriguing reads you won’t want to miss! The new releases list includes so many bestselling authors like Fredrik Backman, Chuck Palahniuk, Sue Miller, and many more. Enjoy your new literary fiction books. Happy reading!



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New Literature & Fiction Books For Your Reading List | September 2020

New Literature & Fiction Books For Your Reading List | September 2020

Does your library need some new literature & fiction books? You can stop searching because we’ve made a list of some of our favorite new releases from authors June A. Converse, Lori Benton, Mary Ellen Taylor, Asha Lemmie, Peace Adzo Medie, and Nancy Jooyoun Kim. Happy reading!


Journey to Hope

by June A. Converse

Release Date: August 22, 2020

The second book in The Hope Trilogy by June A. Converse… When Matt Nelson found Kathleen on the beach, she had been hiding for three years behind a scarf and sunglasses. But there was one thing she couldn’t hide… her loneliness. When her flashbacks start, they are both unprepared for the repercussions and the depth of her emotional suffering. She agrees to return to intensive trauma recovery, where the sounds and smells and images of that terrible night await her.

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Mountain Laurel

by Lori Benton

Release Date: September 1, 2020

The first book in the Kindred Series by bestselling author Lori Benton… North Carolina, 1793. Ian Cameron has come to Mountain Laurel hoping to remake himself yet again-into his planter uncle’s heir. No matter how uneasily the role of slave owner rests upon his shoulders. Then he meets the beautiful and artistic Seona, who is enslaved to his kin. As his fascination turns to love, he can no longer be the man others wished him to be. The path Ian chooses will set the course for generations of Camerons to come.

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Honeysuckle Season

by Mary Ellen Taylor

Release Date: September 1, 2020

Adrift in the wake of her father’s death, a failed marriage, and multiple miscarriages, Libby McKenzie feels truly alone. Her new life as a wedding photographer provides a semblance of purpose, it’s just a distraction from her profound pain. When asked to photograph a wedding at the historic Woodmont estate, Libby meets the owner, Elaine Grant. Libby is immediately drawn to the old greenhouse shrouded in honeysuckle vines.

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Fifty Words for Rain

by Asha Lemmie

Release Date: September 1, 2020

The debut novel from Asha Lemmie, that Kristin Hannah describes as “a lovely, heartrending story about love and loss, prejudice and pain, and the sometimes dangerous, always durable ties that link a family together.” Fifty Words of Rain spans decades and continents to tell a dazzling epic story about the ties that bind, the ties that give you strength, and what it means to be free.

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His Only Wife

by Peace Adzo Medie

Release Date: September 1, 2020

Afi Tekple is a young seamstress in Ghana that has been convinced by her mother to marry a man she does not know. Of course, Afi knows exactly who he is. Elikem is a wealthy businessman whose mother has chosen Afi in the hopes she will distract him from a relationship with a woman his family claims is inappropriate. But Afi is not ready for the shift her life takes when she is moved from her hometown to live in Accra.

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The Last Story of Mina Lee

by Nancy Jooyoun Kim

Release Date: September 1, 2020

A Reece’s Book Club Pick… Margot Lee’s mother, Mina, isn’t returning her calls. It was a mystery to her until she visits her childhood apartment in Koreatown, LA, and finds that her mother has died suspiciously. This discovery sends Margot digging through the past in efforts to unravel the tenuous invisible strings that helf together her single mother’s life.

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Interview with June A. Converse, Author of Journey to Hope

What can you tell us about your new release, Journey to Hope?

In Journey to Hope, Kathleen, with the support of Matt, has decided to step into The Center in Charlotte for intense PTSD rehabilitation after losing her family in a horrific way. While Kathleen struggles through the therapy, Matt also struggles to look at his own life choices. Together they face Kathleen’s demons. Separately, they face their own choices and consequences.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

I never planned to become an author. After a medical crisis forced me to give up my career, I made taking care of my health a priority. To that end, I started hiking daily. On one of these hikes, my character Matt entered my mind and started to tell him his story. On that first day I thought I was going a little crazy. Matt returned day after day telling me “you have to write my story”. Finally, to get him to go away, I sat on my deck and wrote his story. It was 200 pages of yucky writing. It was also the start of a new journey for me, for Matt and for Kathleen.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

• All the Light We Cannot See by Doerr
• Outlander by Gabaldon
• We Need to Talk About Kevin by Shriver
• Wuthering Heights by Bronte
• A Gentleman in Moscow by Towles

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask

Jodi Picoult. All of your stories focus on a difficult topic and you force the reader to see shades of grey. We enter your books with one opinion about say, abortion, and when we close the book, we aren’t quite as solid in our view. Is this your reason for writing? Do you start the journey with one view and then force yourself to look at shades of grey through your characters? Which book has changed you the most and why?

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

When the characters become so real they take me on a journey instead of me taking them on one. I love it when a character tells me I didn’t represent them correctly and tell me I have to re-write.

What is a typical day like for you?

I’m up by 630AM. The early morning is about coffee, exercising, walking the dog and prioritizing my to do list. By 9AM, I’m usually working on some sort of writing – the blog I write for an organization working with the visually impaired, my own blog or novel number three. The morning is writing draft. After lunch I either move to editing for someone else or my own stuff. Fridays is dedicated to coaching other writers and Wednesdays I often teach at the local colleges. Thankfully, I have good people behind me and can focus on writing and not marketing/sales. By 4PM, I’m exhausted and read until time to make dinner.

What scene from Journey to Hope was your favorite to write?

This is actually a scene re-write. At about the 2/3 mark, Matt and his sister get into an argument. I wrote this and read it to my husband. He liked it and agreed it was how he would handle a conflict with his own sister. But while taking a bath, Matt (the fictional character), stood above me and said, “I am not your husband. I would not be that nice. I would tell her to get the f*!* out of my office. Get up tomorrow and re-write the scene.” I did as he asked and it’s a great scene and more authentic to Matt.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

If it’s going to be funny in five years, then laugh about it today.

And my coffee cup reads … “Zero F*$% Given” – this reminds me to give emotional energy in areas important to me and not anywhere else. Plus, my kids gave it to me because they know me well.

June A. Converse is the author of the new book Journey to Hope.

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Interview with Lori Benton, Author of Mountain Laurel

What can you tell us about your new release, Mountain Laurel?

Mountain Laurel is set in 1793 North Carolina. After a couple of false starts, Scottish-born and Boston-bred Ian Cameron is once again set on establishing a life that will make his father proud, though Ian would settle for unashamed. But in his newly adopted role as his planter uncle’s heir, Ian soon finds himself at odds with his kin’s acceptance of slavery and the injustices he witnesses. He’ll need a force more compelling than familial expectations to guide him through the web of kinship, oppression, and casual cruelty in which he’s all too quickly become entangled.

As an enslaved young woman, Seona has few avenues of self-expression. The one she has found, secretly drawing on scraps of paper she scrounges, has been discovered. To Seona’s surprise, Ian Cameron not only keeps her secret but encourages the endeavor. But trusting her master’s nephew in this one thing leads to complications Seona could never foresee.

What or who inspired you to become an author?

It was Leah, my best friend in the third grade. One day she told me she’d written a story and showed it to me to prove it. It was a moment of revelation, one of the standouts in my life. Already an avid reader, inspired by my favorite stories to create costumes and role-play my favorite characters, it had not yet occurred to me that I could write an original story of my own. I promptly did so. I continued writing stories into high school and always enjoyed writing projects best of any schoolwork—except for art. When I was in my early twenties, knee-deep in an art career, I decided to write a novel and see if I could get it published. Since then I haven’t stopped writing, except for a few years in my early thirties when I struggled with chemo fog, post cancer treatment. The journey from that decision to write a novel to finally seeing one published took twenty-two years. I wrote several novels that turned out to be for practice before Burning Sky was published in 2013.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

This is always a tough question to answer. Tomorrow I might come up with another list but the ones that come to mind right now are:

Summer of the Danes by Ellis Peters (narrated by Patrick Tull)
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
To Say Nothing of the Dog, or How We Found the Bishop’s Bird Stump at Last by Connie Willis (narrated by Steven Crossley)
Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon (narrated by Davina Porter)
The Mitford series by Jan Karon (narrated by John McDonough)

That last one was a cheat (a whole series!) but I’m going to cheat again because I really ought to put James Alexander Thom’s eighteenth-century frontier stories on this list. If it were a six-book list, I’d include The Red Heart or Panther in the Sky.

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask

Diana Gabaldon, author of the Outlander books. I’ve known her for a long time via a writers’ forum we both frequent. She’s been a huge inspiration to me in many ways, including the writing of Mountain Laurel. It was an unexpected characteristic given to a minor character in her book Drums of Autumn that inspired Mountain Laurel and its sequel (coming in 2021). In Drums, Josh, an enslaved young man on a plantation, speaks with a Scottish accent. When I asked whether she had made this up or found it in her research, Diana shared the source that inspired her to give Josh that surprising character trait. I read it for myself then did what writers do: let my mind go spinning away with a thousand what-if questions. That story-weaving eventually led to the creation of Lily and Malcolm, two secondary characters readers will meet in the pages of Mountain Laurel.

What would I ask Diana? Just a million things! But I’d start by asking what challenges she faced writing Outlander, a novel about a place (Scotland) she’d never at the time visited, a thing I’ve done myself with some of my eighteenth-century stories.

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

It’s also the thing I find the hardest—the actual writing. Most days writing is flat-out hard work. Until it isn’t. Until inspiration shows up at last and something surprising happens on the page, something that moves me to tears, makes me laugh, solves a plot issue, reveals another facet of a character I thought I knew inside and out, or deepens a theme in some unexpected way. Those are the moments I write to reach.

What is a typical day like for you?

I like to be at my computer as close to 8 a.m. as I can manage, after seeing my husband off to work, feeding the dog, etc. I’ll dink about with email and social media for a bit but when 9 a.m. rolls around, I want to be working. I’ll write until lunch, take a break and ride my stationary bike, then, if a deadline is pressing or I feel motivated to do so, I’ll go back to the computer for a couple more hours. (This might be to write or for promotional work.) That’s the shape of a typical writing day. In the weeks right before a deadline, I’ll often set my alarm for 3 a.m. and get an extra writing session in before my husband wakes up, then break until he leaves for work. I do my best work in the mornings. Afternoon work tends to be less productive.

What scene from Mountain Laurel was your favorite to write?

I’m normally a linear writer, but not with Mountain Laurel. It was the first book I wrote as I was recovering from the aforementioned chemo fog and discovering that I needed to retrain my brain to do what I’d been doing for a decade before the cancer journey began—sit down at the computer each morning and hammer out words for about four hours at a stretch. Plotting a whole novel was beyond me, but I could see a few vivid scenes. So I wrote those, not knowing where they might fit into the vague notion I had for this story. Proceeding in that manner, I eventually finished Mountain Laurel, but those early scenes remain some of my favorites, because they brought me out of the fog and returned the joy of writing to my life. One of those has to do with that raven on the book’s cover. It’s the first scene in Mountain Laurel that features the raven, but that’s all I can say without giving away a major spoiler in the story!

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

Taped to my monitor is this quote, unattributed, and it’s been there so long I have forgotten who said it, but it’s a reminder my oft-impatient spirit needs constantly. “Don’t steal tomorrow out of God’s hands. Give God time to speak to you and reveal His will. He is never too late; learn to wait.”

Lori Benton is the author of the new book Mountain Laurel.

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New Books to Read in Literary Fiction | September 1

Literary fiction readers are in for a treat. This week’s latest releases list is full of intriguing reads you won’t want to miss! The new releases list includes so many bestselling authors like Lori Benton, June A. Converse, Yaa Gyasi, Asha Lemmie, and many more. Enjoy your new literary fiction books. Happy reading!



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Must-Read Literary Fiction Novels | August 2020

Must-Read Literary Fiction Novels | August 2020

Need some recommendations for your next literary fiction read? We’ve got you covered with some amazing new releases from bestselling authors Jenni Ogden, Christina Baker Kline, Margot Livesey, Ali Smith, Joanne DeMaio, and Danielle Steel. Happy reading!


The Moon is Missing

by Jenni Ogden

Release Date: August 25, 2020

The new novel from the bestselling author of A Drop in the Ocean… Georgia Grayson has perfected the art of being two people. She is a neurosurgeon on track to becoming the first female Director of Neurosurgery at a large London hospital but she is also a wife and mother. Home is her haven, with her husband Adam’s support, she copes with her occasional anxiety attacks. That is until her daughter demands to know more about Danny… Her mysterious biological father who died before she was born.

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The Exiles

by Christina Baker Kline

Release Date: August 25, 2020

The new novel from the New York Times Bestselling Author of Orphan Train… Seduced by her employer’s son, Evangeline is discharged when her pregnancy is discovered and sent to the notorious Newgate Prison. After months in the fetid, overcrowded jail, she learns she is sentenced to “the land beyond the seas,” Van Diemen’s Land, a penal colony in Australia. She knows that her child will be born on the months-long voyage to the distant land.

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The Boy in the Field

by Margot Livesey

Release Date: August 11, 2020

From the New York Times Bestselling Author of The Flight of Gemma Hardy… One afternoon in 1999, Matthew, Zoe, and Duncan Lang discover a boy lying in a field, bloody and unconscious. The boy’s life is saved thanks to their intervention. In the aftermath, all three siblings are irrevocably changed.

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Summer

by Ali Smith

Release Date: August 25, 2020

The fourth book in the Seasonal Quartet Series from bestselling author Ali Smith… Sasha knows the world is in trouble. Her brother is trouble. Their mother and father are having trouble… Meanwhile, the world is in meltdown and the real meltdown hasn’t even happened yet. This is a story about people on the brink of change.

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The Beach Cottag

by Joanne DeMaio

Release Date: August 15, 2020

The latest novel from New York Times Bestselling Author Joanne DeMaio… For Mack and Avery Martinelli, the summer is their oyster. They can spend all day on the beack, or not. They can cruise the dusty beach roads or never leave their deck. Every decision this week is theirs… Until it is not.

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Royal

by Danielle Steel

Release Date: August 18, 2020

The war rages during the summer of 1943. The King and Queen choose to quietly send their youngest daughter, Princess Charlotte, to live with a trusted noble family in the country. Despite her headstrong nature, the princess’s fragile health poses far too great a risk for her to remain in war-torn London.

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Interview with Jenni Ogden, Author of The Moon is Missing

What can you tell us about your new release, The Moon is Missing?

It is a family drama, a book club read, a tale of family secrets and mother–daughter conflict set in London, New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, and on a remote island off the coast of New Zealand. It draws on my knowledge of things medical and especially neurosurgery, my psychology training, three locations I am familiar with and love, and my own experience of being a mother of four. I was somewhat surprised when I discovered from reading the cover blurbs written by two superb authors that it was a domestic suspense! This is what they said:

“Jenni Ogden is a beautiful writer. In her newest, a tale of domestic suspense, Ogden tells the story of a neurosurgeon bedeviled by her own sophisticated brain and the memories of a long-ago tragedy that still has the power to destroy her and her family. Pick up The Moon is Missing. You won’t put it down.”— Jacquelyn Mitchard, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Deep End of the Ocean, the book that began Oprah’s Book Club.

“With gripping scenes set during Hurricane Katrina and on a remote New Zealand island, this tightly-woven family drama—fueled by long-buried secrets and a daughter’s desperate need to answer the question, ‘Who am I?’ —is ripe for book club discussion.” —Barbara Claypole White, bestselling author of A Perfect Son

What or who inspired you to become an author?

Before I wrote fiction I was a clinical psychologist and neuropsychologist and published non-fiction books of cases of my own patients (Fractured Minds and Trouble in Mind, similar to the cases of Oliver Sacks). These have been long-time best sellers for me and I believe their popularity as college textbooks as well as for the general reader is due to the real-life stories and the emotional connection the reader forms with the patients and their families. This emotional connection, of course, is why we read fiction. I have always been an avid reader of fiction and wanted to have a go at that, so I retired from my university position early, moved with my husband to a spectacular off-grid island off the coast of New Zealand, and begun the long and involving journey that is writing fiction. My debut novel, A Drop in the Ocean, turned out to be a success, won four awards including the Nautilus Award for Fiction, Large Publisher (won most recently by Barbara Kingsolver), and has sold over 80,000 copies. Since then I have completed three more novels, one currently in the bottom drawer(!), one which I hope will be published in 2021, and my current new release, The Moon is Missing.

What’s on your top 5 list for the best books you’ve ever read?

Good grief, impossible to choose five… and of course there are always those childhood favorites to include! In many cases authors rather than specific books are easier…

Those authors no longer writing (ie: no longer in this world)! Rumer Godden (China Court, In this House of Brede), Emily Bronte (Wuthering Heights), P.D. James (her Adam Dalgheish seres), L.M. Montgomery (Anne of Green Gables), Gene Stratton-Porter (Freckles), Gerald Durrell (all his books), Oliver Sacks, Pat Conroy, Rosamunde Pilcher (Coming Home), Bryce Courtenay (The Power of One), Colleen McCulloch (The Thorn Birds).

Best books I’ve read in the last few years: The Splendid and the Vile: A Saga of Churchill, Family and Defiance during the Blitz, by Erik Larson, Richard North Patterson (all his books), Lionel Shriver, Ann Patchett, Barbara Kingsolver, Anna Quindlen (especially One True Thing), Chris Cleave (Everyone Brave is Forgiven), Colson Whitehead (The Underground Railroad), Sebastian Faulks (all his books).

Say you’re the host of a literary talk show. Who would be your first guest? What would you want to ask

Sebastian Faulks. He is a superb writer, a giant intellect, an engaging speaker and a very charming man! I think I would begin by asking him: “You write so many different types of books, from satire to drama, novels set in the World Wars, and even a James Bond novel, ‘impersonating’ the writing style of Ian Fleming. Which of all your novels is the one you consider your best, and why; which was the hardest to write, and why; and which, if any, do you now wish had never seen the light of day?

What’s your favorite thing about writing?

Being able to enter a world I am fascinated by (and perhaps could never experience in real life), and being able to spend a year or longer immersed in it (and not feel guilty about leaving the vacuuming for another day!)

What is a typical day like for you?

Avoiding vacuuming. Also depends on whether I have a book coming out (like now!) or I’m revising, or writing a new book. Marketing does rather take precedence around a new release, which can be fun, but outside of that, I write most days for varying periods depending on how sunny it is and whether the sea is inviting or I have a good book (by someone else) I can’t put down. I don’t rise at dawn to write, but usually write during the day, and read or watch Netflix in the evenings. I consider the hours (and hours) I spend on the beach also part of my writing time as that’s when I dream up characters and scenes and plot twists… Our very spectacular beach is a few minutes walk from our house, and usually, I am the only person on it. And yes, I know how lucky I am!

What scene from The Moon is Missing was your favorite to write?

I can’t think of a specific scene but Part Two, set during Hurricane Katrina, is my favorite part, and everyone who has so far read the book, whether an editor or a reviewer, has said they were gripped by that part and couldn’t tell it from real-life stories of Katrina. I did a lot of research for this section, as although I have been to New Orleans many times, I wasn’t there during Hurricane Katrina. It is interesting to me that that section wrote itself once I’d done the research, and I have changed nothing major in that part since the first draft, unlike the rest of the book which has had major revisions.

Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?

I am the eternal optimist, and I tend to like almost everyone and trust people I have formed a relationship with (including students I taught, trades-people who have worked for me, as well as acquaintances, colleagues, friends, and family). I have rarely been disappointed. I think that New Zealand’s ‘motto’ during these COVID times is a good one: “Be safe and be kind.” And to that I add “and you will be more likely to be happy.”

Jenni Ogden is the author of the new book The Moon is Missing.

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New Books to Read in Literary Fiction | August 25

Literary fiction readers are in for a treat. This week’s latest releases list is full of intriguing reads you won’t want to miss! The new releases list includes so many bestselling authors like Jenni Ogden, Ali Smith, Christina Baker Kline, and many more. Enjoy your new literary fiction books. Happy reading!



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The Buzziest Books of August | 2020

The Buzziest Books of August | 2020

The month of August was a great time for readers with a host of exciting releases from bestselling authors. There were so many page-turning novels that captivated us from cover to cover this month. If you want to catch up on the books everyone was talking about, here are our choices for the buzziest books of August. Happy reading!


The Night Swim

by Megan Goldin

Release Date: August 4, 2020

From the bestselling author of The Escape Room… In The Night Swim, a true-crime podcast host that is covering a controversial trial suddenly finds herself drawn deep into a small town’s dark past and a shocking crime that took place there years before.

Buy on Amazon

Midnight Sun

by Stephenie Meyer

Release Date: August 4, 2020

From the bestselling author of The Twilight Saga comes a new take on the iconic love story of Edward and Bella told from the vampire’s point of view. Up until now, readers have only experienced Bella’s side of the story. Finally, readers can experience Edward’s side of the story. “People do not want to just read Meyer’s books; they want to climb inside them and live there.” – Time

Buy on Amazon

Critical Mass

by Craig Alanson

Release Date: August 4, 2020

The tenth book in the Expeditionary Force series by New York Times Bestselling Author Craig Alanson… After the end of their last mission, the Merry Band of Pirates are in desperate trouble. But the real danger to humanity is just getting started. Hostile aliens have discovered something odd going on with wormholes in the galaxy… their discovery could lead to finding a shortcut to Earth.

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Want You to Want Me

by Lorelei James

Release Date: August 4, 2020

The second book in The Want You Series by New York Times Bestselling Author Lorelei James… Gabriella “Gabi” Welk is a hockey player that has spent her life in pursuit of championships but has little to show for it. Now her career consists of several part-time jobs to make a living. When Gabi gets a chance at her dream job, she swallows her pride and asks her nemesis—smart, sexy, and savvy Nolan Lund—for help.

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The Last Prince

by E.G. Radcliff

Release Date: August 6, 2020

The second book in The Coming of Áed Series by E.G. Radcliff… Robbed of his childhood by tragedy and betrayal and forced onto the streets, only fury makes young Ninian feel whole. In a world of gangs and fae, he is more than willing to fight for his life. But by the time a desperate Ninian realizes he’s crossed the wrong person, it is much, much too late.

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It’s Not Over

by Willow Rose

Release Date: July 29, 2020

The sixth book in the Eva Rae Thomas Mystery Series by bestselling author Willow Rose… Peter and Mary Marshall went on a vacation with their son and daughter but returned without their children. Both went missing from their hotel room one evening while the couple was downstairs in the restaurant for dinner. They were never seen again. Ten years later, the Marshalls have moved on. But when their son goes missing on a vacation in Florida, the parents are in the limelight again.

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The Island Daughter

by Helena Halme

Release Date: July 17, 2020

The third book in the Love on the Island Series by Helena Halme… After her stepfather has a fatal heart attack, Alicia returns home to the Åland Islands to support her mother, Hilda. She leaves behind a new life with her lover, Patrick, in Stockholm. But when her lover’s ex, Mia, the daughter of the local property magnate, makes moves to rekindle her relationship with Patrick, Alicia is torn between duty and her own happiness.

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Druid Arcane

by M.D. Massey

Release Date: July 31, 2020

The 11th book in The Colin McCool Paranormal Suspense Series by M.D. Massey… I thought that learning magic from a druid master was tough, but that was before I started taking lessons from an insane quasi-god. For six long months, I’ve been under the tutelage of Click, working on my magic skills so I can survive the wrath of several Celtic gods and find a cure for my druid mentor, Finnegas.

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