Saturday, June 21, 2014

Free and bargain Kindle books! (Saturday Jun 21)

Free today!

Apron Strings, by Mary Morony. (Still free?)

"Wonderfully realized! Author Mary Morony does a terrific job of depicting life in the 1950's south in this compelling novel of growing up in the segregated society of central Virginia. I literally couldn't put it down as I was swept into her descriptions of the conflicts and confusion that racism and apartheid inflicted on those (both black and white) who grew up in that era. Highly recommended." -- Amazon reviewer


When a grown-up tells you not to worry, you had better start—first rule of thumb, Sallee Mackey, age seven. She is already more than a little bit wary of the adults in her Jim Crow era, Southern world with good reason. Sallee’s mother Ginny is flat out dangerous; her father Joe is on his way out the door; and Mr. Dabney the bigoted neighbor seems to be just a little too interested with the goings on at Sallee’s house—like he knows something no one else does. The only adult to be trusted is Ethel, the family maid, who has known Sallee’s mother since Ethel and Ginny were both girls.

That complicated relationship started the day Ethel spied Ginny kissing the black stable boy years ago. While Ginny has conveniently forgotten that she even knew Ethel back then, Sallee has not as she constantly lobs questions at Ethel about her mother’s girlhood.

From Sallee’s oft times humorous and always guileless vantage, grownups have a most mixed up view of the world. What does skin color have to do with learning? Closing schools rather than have black and white children in the same classroom, what’s the sense of that?

Ethel gives her very own biased account of her shared history with Ginny while Sallee hones her vigilance and stealth, skills she and her brother and two sisters have acquired in an attempt to understand the drama that swirls around them. Rocks are thrown through windows, a car filled with angry white men shout racial slurs at the children at play and a tragic poisoning threatens the entire family’s sense of security.

When Joe Mackey asks Ethel to testify on his behalf in a custody suit, her conflicted loyalties throw the entire family into even more turmoil.

253 pages, with a 4.7-star rating from 32 reviews.

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Across Great Divides, by Monique Roy. (Still 0.99?)

"Across Great divides connects two of the 20th centuries great travesties: the Nazi occupation of Europe and the system called Apartheid in South Africa. Through the eyes of one families life story and trials here is a well written and colorful historical novel with abundant detail and enough passion to drive one's emotions against all totalitarian systems. A great novel that has a good pace and much enlightenment of these two oppressive systems with the added context of a family forced into unwanted situations." -- Amazon reviewer

Across Great Divides is a timeless story of the upheavals of war, the power of family, and the resiliency of human spirit. When Hitler came to power in 1933, one Jewish family refused to be destroyed and defied the Nazis only to come up against another struggle—confronting apartheid in South Africa.

Sixteen-year-old Eva and her twin sister, Inge, witness their lives in Berlin change before their eyes. Their best friend, Trudy, betrays them when she becomes a member of the Hitler Youth. A valuable family heirloom, a beautiful emerald and diamond pendant necklace, is confiscated by the Nazis as they continue to harass Jewish families and businesses.

Their younger brother, Max, a member of the underground resistance, sees even greater danger ahead. Their father, Oskar, a diamond merchant with a thriving business, refuses to leave his beloved Germany and believes Hitler will eventually fail. Their mother, Helene, the elegant matriarch of the family, holds her family together.

The family is conflicted whether they should leave home. But after the devastation of Kristallnacht in 1938, they finally flee Germany with the help of the underground resistance after hiding many diamonds. They seek refuge in Antwerp, but war follows them as Belgium is occupied by the Germans.

A young German man, a nun, a countess conspiring against the Nazis, and a winegrower secretly hiding Jewish children, help them to escape Europe. They hike over the Pyrenees Mountains while eluding German patrols and Spanish informers. Then, they spend agonizing days on a ship bound for Rio de Janeiro that is targeted by a German U-boat. As Rio’s diamond business is corrupt, they decide to go to South Africa, another diamond market.

In Cape Town, Eva encounters an impoverished colored woman, Zoe, who is in need of work. The family hires Zoe as their maid and shields her and her daughter, Zola, from the dangers they face in the slums of District Six and from the horrors of apartheid, which are all too reminiscent of Nazi Germany.

But, when Max gets into trouble with the South African police over his participation in an anti-apartheid march, will he be subject to imprisonment?

In a thrilling conclusion, the family comes to terms with the evils of society, both in their memories and current situation in South Africa.

223 pages, with a 4.6-star rating from 21 reviews.

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In the Mirror, by Kaira Rouda. (Still 0.99?)

"Beautiful story. In The Mirror by Kaira Rouda was a beautiful book. This book made me laugh and cry. I loved Jennifer and Ralph's special relationship, they made each other laugh, pulled each other up when they felt down and gave each other strength to fight their cancer. I enjoyed the twist of the old ex Alex, and the awakening of her relationship with her husband Henry." -- Amazon reviewer

What choices would you make if you knew you may die soon?

From the multi award-winning, best-selling author of four books, including Here, Home, Hope, a gripping and heart wrenching novel about a young mother who has it all. The only problem is she may be dying.

In her previous works including All the Difference, Rouda's characters "sparkle with humor and heart," and the stories are "told with honest insight and humor" (Booklist). "Inspirational and engaging" (ForeWord), these are the novels you'll turn to for strong female characters and an "engaging read" (Kirkus).

In the Mirror is the story of Jennifer Benson, a woman who seems to have it all. Diagnosed with cancer, she enters an experimental treatment facility to tackle her disease the same way she tackled her life - head on. But while she's busy fighting for a cure, running her business, planning a party, staying connected with her kids, and trying to keep her sanity, she ignores her own intuition and warnings from others and reignites an old relationship best left behind.

If you knew you might die, what choices would you make? How would it affect your marriage? How would you live each day? And how would you say no to the one who got away?

216 pages, with a 4.6-star rating from 27 reviews.

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Free today!

Twelfth Night (A Lady Julia Mystery), by Deanna Raybourn. (Still free?)

"Short but satisfying! Deanna Raybourn' s Lady Julia series is one of the best in the historical mystery genre. Although Twelfth Night is way too short, it is, as always, witty, clever and a pleasure to read. She crafts a small mystery around interesting and funny characters and leaves you wishing for more. I can't wait until the next installment." -- Amazon reviewer


New York Times bestselling author Deanna Raybourn returns with a brand-new novella, starring her beloved heroine, the intrepid Lady Julia Grey

To mark the passing of another decade, the esteemed—and eccentric—March family have assembled at Bellmont Abbey to perform the Twelfth Night Revels for their sleepy English village. But before Lady Julia and her handsome, sleuthing husband, Nicolas Brisbane, can take to the stage, a ruckus in the stable yard demands their attention. An abandoned infant is found nestled in the steel helm of St. George. What's more, their only lead is the local legend of a haunted cottage and its ghastly inhabitant—who seems to have returned.

Once again, Lady Julia and Nicholas take up the challenge to investigate, and when the source of the mystery is revealed, they'll be faced with an impossible choice—one that will alter the course of their lives…forever.

Don't miss a single tale in the Lady Julia Grey series—or Deanna Raybourn's latest novel, City of Jasmine.

51 pages, with a 4.5-star rating from 41 reviews.

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(We save you time by curating our selections of bargain books. We filter out books with a less than 4-star rating, or have few reviews. We exclude books that are merely teasers, and generally exclude those that are less than 100 pages in length. Your time is valuable and we strive to find quality for you in your bargain e-books!)

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