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Amazon’s is now called Amazon First Reads. In addition to letting Amazon Prime members pick one of the selected books for free (to keep), Prime members can now purchase the hardcover edition of these books for $9.99 or less and there are free Short Stories and Kindle Singles, as well, for those with Kindle Unlimited.
The new picks for this month’s Amazon First Reads program have been available long enough that we can now look at the reviews before making a selection. If you are an Amazon Prime Member, you can pick any one of these books for free and get it to read — and keep — now.
If you are not an Amazon Prime Member, then you can purchase any one of the books at a discounted price (usually $1.99) and download immediately (hardcovers are specially priced at $12.99 or less). Either way, If you want more than one, you’ll have to pre-order and the price generally goes up to $4.99-$5.99 for the subsequent books.
Lies That Bind Us by Andrew Hart
From a prize-winning and New York Times bestselling author comes a chilling novel of deception under the sun…
Jan needs this. She’s flying to Crete to reunite with friends she met there five years ago and relive an idyllic vacation. Basking in the warmth of the sun, the azure sea, and the aura of antiquity, she can once again pretend—for a little while—that she belongs. Her ex-boyfriend Marcus will be among them, but even he doesn’t know the secrets she keeps hidden behind a veil of lies. None of them really know her, and that’s only part of the problem.
Then again, how well does she know them?
When Jan awakens in utter darkness, chained to a wall, a manacle around her wrist, her echoing screams only give her a sense of how small her cell is. As she desperately tries to reconstruct what happened and determine who is holding her prisoner, dread covers despair like a hand clamped over her mouth. Because, like the Minotaur in the labyrinth in Greek myth, her captor will be coming back for her, and all the lies will catch up to her…
A Marriage in Dog Years: A Memoir by Nancy Balbirer
When Nancy Balbirer learns her beloved eleven-year-old beagle has kidney failure, she’s devastated. She and her husband had gotten Ira as a puppy—a wedding gift to each other, and their first foray into “parenthood.” Now, her dog is terminal, her marriage is on life support, and Nancy is desperate to save them both (whether they want it or not). In a single year, she loses her two best friends, but Nancy’s life is about to take yet another unexpected turn.
With humor and heart, Nancy Balbirer shares her story of relationships, loss, and canine friendship in this illuminating memoir about the lengths people will go to keep love alive…and the power of finally letting go.
The Speed of Sound by Eric Bernt
In this propulsive thriller, one of the most ingenious young men in the world has also become the most dangerous…or has he?
Harmony House is more than a “special place for special people.” It’s a think tank where high-functioning autistic savants harness their unique abilities for the benefit of society. Resident Eddie Parks’s contribution is nothing less than extraordinary: an “echo box” that can re-create never-recorded sounds using acoustic archeology.
All Eddie wants is to hear his late mother’s voice. But what he’s created is inadvertently posing a threat to national security.
To Harmony House’s shadowy government backers and radical extremists, the echo box is the ultimate intelligence asset—an end to the very concept of secrecy. Now for Eddie and the compassionate Dr. Skylar Drummond, the true nature of the institution is becoming chillingly clear.
As ruthless competing enemies close in on Eddie and his miraculous machine, Skylar risks all to take him on the run. Because once that prize is won, Eddie Parks will no longer be considered a “special person” but a dangerous redundancy. An inconvenient echo that must be silenced.
Never Stop Walking: A Memoir of Finding Home Across the World by Christina Rickardsson and Tara F. Chace (Translator)
An extraordinary memoir of one woman’s fight to find her true self between the life into which she was born and the one she was given.
Christiana Mara Coelho was born into extreme poverty in Brazil. After spending the first seven years of her life with her loving mother in the forest caves outside São Paulo and then on the city streets, where they begged for food, she and her younger brother were suddenly put up for adoption. When one door closed on the only life Christiana had ever known and on the woman who protected her with all her heart, a new one opened.
As Christina Rickardsson, she’s raised by caring adoptive parents in Sweden, far from the despairing favelas of her childhood. Accomplished and outwardly “normal,” Christina is also filled with rage over what she’s lost and having to adapt to a new reality while struggling with the traumas of her youth. When her world falls apart again as an adult, Christina returns to Brazil to finally confront her past and unlock the truth of what really happened to Christiana Mara Coelho.
A memoir of two selves, Never Stop Walking is the moving story of the profound love between families and one woman’s journey from grief and loss to survival and self-discovery.
Matchmaking for Beginners: A Novel by Maddie Dawson
Marnie MacGraw wants an ordinary life—a husband, kids, and a minivan in the suburbs. Now that she’s marrying the man of her dreams, she’s sure this is the life she’ll get. Then Marnie meets Blix Holliday, her fiancé’s irascible matchmaking great-aunt who’s dying, and everything changes—just as Blix told her it would.
When her marriage ends after two miserable weeks, Marnie is understandably shocked. She’s even more astonished to find that she’s inherited Blix’s Brooklyn brownstone along with all of Blix’s unfinished “projects”: the heartbroken, oddball friends and neighbors running from happiness. Marnie doesn’t believe she’s anything special, but Blix somehow knew she was the perfect person to follow in her matchmaker footsteps.
And Blix was also right about some things Marnie must learn the hard way: love is hard to recognize, and the ones who push love away often are the ones who need it most.
True: A Novel by Karl Taro Greenfeld
Karl Taro Greenfeld, acclaimed author of Triburbia and Boy Alone, offers a literary coming-of-age novel that deftly and unflinchingly imagines a world where an angry teenage girl discovers the nature of the bigger game of life and what it really means to be a team player, a sister, a daughter, and a born survivor.
True has a singular path: to be the greatest soccer player of her generation. But to realize her dream, she’ll need to make the Under-17 National Team, then the Residency Program, and the ultimate: the US Women’s National Team. Otherwise she can say goodbye to the Women’s World Cup. And True will do whatever it takes to be the top girl on the field.
True has to stay focused because her family is crumbling. With the loss of her mother, True is forced to take care of her autistic younger sister while her grieving father wastes his time gambling. And high school isn’t much better. While True’s teammates are getting taller and growing up, she’s hardening around the edges, at a loss for what it means to be a typical teen girl. But when she’s in the game, the anxieties of family and fitting in just fade away. True—with her soft feet and deft first touch—can knock anyone off the ball. And more importantly, she can throw an elbow harder than anybody else. On the pitch, she’s a soccer player first, a sister second. On the pitch, she’s free.
Beneath a Scarlet Sky by Mark Sullivan, an April 2017 Kindle First pick, has reached a million readers, so Amazon has marked down the hardcover edition to $9.99 for this month, while the Kindle Edition is $6.99 (and free to read with Kindle Unlimited).
Soon to be a major television event from Pascal Pictures, starring Tom Holland.
Based on the true story of a forgotten hero, Beneath a Scarlet Sky is the triumphant, epic tale of one young man’s incredible courage and resilience during one of history’s darkest hours.
Pino Lella wants nothing to do with the war or the Nazis. He’s a normal Italian teenager—obsessed with music, food, and girls—but his days of innocence are numbered. When his family home in Milan is destroyed by Allied bombs, Pino joins an underground railroad helping Jews escape over the Alps, and falls for Anna, a beautiful widow six years his senior.
In an attempt to protect him, Pino’s parents force him to enlist as a German soldier—a move they think will keep him out of combat. But after Pino is injured, he is recruited at the tender age of eighteen to become the personal driver for Adolf Hitler’s left hand in Italy, General Hans Leyers, one of the Third Reich’s most mysterious and powerful commanders.
Now, with the opportunity to spy for the Allies inside the German High Command, Pino endures the horrors of the war and the Nazi occupation by fighting in secret, his courage bolstered by his love for Anna and for the life he dreams they will one day share.
Fans of All the Light We Cannot See, The Nightingale, and Unbroken will enjoy this riveting saga of history, suspense, and love.
Note: Kindle Unlimited subscribers can borrow the Amazon First Reads books when they are officially released.
May Amazon First Reads – Books on the Knob Download Link
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