Today’s News and Notes:
Happy May! Enjoy these free ebooks to start your month off right!

The Great Talent Show Lie

by Pricilla Bleik

Like any young girl, India Roman’s sister Cylia dreams of making it big by entering the worldwide phenomenon that is the STAR singing competition. The only hitch is that Cylia suffers from a number of anxiety disorders and India is convinced that her sister won’t be able to join the winding audition queue without having a major breakdown.

A mother of two with a distant husband, India finds it difficult to feel sympathy for Cylia, particularly as her mother has always favoured her much younger sibling. However, fate steps in and Cylia somehow ends up on the edge of the stage, about to audition for two of the toughest critics on TV. What happens next is both shocking and life-changing for the entire family.

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Red Clover

by Florence Osmund

Imagine feeling like an outsider. Now imagine feeling like an outsider in your own family.

Evanston, Illinois. Lee Oliver Winekoop is born into extreme wealth, but despite his near genius IQ, he doesnʾt have the resourcefulness to realize any of its benefits. His motherʾs passive parenting style and frequent absences from their lakefront mansion leave him in the care of nannies as a child even when sheʾs home, making Lee feel unwanted and alone. Further undermining his self-worth is his fatherʾs inexplicable contempt toward him. If Lee only knew why his parents disliked him so, he would fix whatever it was he was doing wrong, and remove the invisible barrier that keeps him from fitting in.

Lee wants nothing more than to be like his two older brothers—successful at everything they do, sons who make their parents proud—even if it means buying into the familyʾs philosophy that money is the answer to oneʾs success in life.

In the thick of Leeʾs discontent, his motherʾs favorite uncle dies and leaves him a sizable inheritance—an inheritance with some bizarre strings attached. But as soon as he tries to start using it to mold an identity for himself, his world is turned upside-down when he learns shocking family secrets—causing him to rethink who he is and where heʾs going.

The Dark Genesis Of Daniel James

by Kevin Riley

They were coming, he knew it, and there was nothing he could do to stop them. But once they came, 16 year old Daniel James found himself thrown into a world very few people even know exists. As he struggles to fit into a society he did not grow up in, Daniel must learn how to control the growing power inside him in order to save the girl he’s fallen for and to stop the man responsible for the evil that forever changed his life.

Blue Like Elvis

by Diane Moody

Do you remember where you were the day Elvis died?

I do. I know exactly where I was.
I was there.

In the spring of 1977, Shelby Colter moved back to Memphis, Tennessee hoping to make a fresh start after breaking off her engagement. Working as a patient representative hostess at Baptist Memorial Hospital–the world’s largest private hospital–she’s thrilled with her new job, assisting patients with their non-medical needs. She has to laugh at her colorful co-workers who constantly chat about Elvis-sightings. After all, Baptist Memorial was “Elvis’s hospital.”

Shelby hits the ground running, taking care of her patients, getting to know her new friends, and bumping into . . . Dr. Tucker Thompson? Who knew that annoying kid who used to hang out with her big brother was now a resident at Baptist Memorial Hospital? Little Chubby Tucker–a compassionate, handsome doctor?

As the summer rolls along, three people she loves face life-threatening situations, drawing Shelby back to her faith. And then one night, in a hospital prayer room, she pours out her heart to a most unexpected visitor . . .

Blue Like Elvis is loosely based on the author’s real-life experiences while working at Baptist Memorial Hospital in the summer of 1977. While most of the novel is fiction, the setting of Shelby’s adventures are based on the author’s memories of those days in Memphis leading up to that unforgettable day . . . the day Elvis died.

No Human Involved

by Barbara Seranella

Munch Mancini is trying to get clean and get her act together, but when she becomes the prime suspect in a murder case, sobriety may be what gets her killed.

A former junkie-turned-auto mechanic, Miranda “Munch” Mancini just wants to make an honest living. But nothing in life is easy, and Munch’s hopes for a new life are dashed when her abusive father turns up murdered, and Munch is the main suspect. Staying clean is one thing, but staying off Detective Mace St. John’s radar, especially when a series of gruesome murders all point to Munch as the culprit, may prove impossible. Her only hope is to cut a deal with the detective, putting her own life on the line to catch a killer. But trust doesn’t come easily for ex-junkies, or for cops. The impulse to betray this precarious alliance may be too strong for either to resist – and may get both of them killed.

Let Me Go

by L.L. Akers

The pasts of three sisters and their mother collide head-on with a mysterious present in this surreal and gripping family drama. One of these women finds herself trapped. Alone. In a box. She battles to survive the terrifying darkness. With long hours of nothing to do but wait in terror for her captor to return, she grapples through obscure dreams and memories of a painful family past, painting the story of the dragonfly tattoo–once meant to be a beautiful, family mark of freedom–but destined to become a prophetic brand of survival shared by the four women who wear it.

Identical twins, Gabby and Olivia, and their little sister, Emma, flee their less-than-perfect childhoods, and find they take more of their mother with them than her long chocolate-colored hair and her startling blue eyes.

Wanting to just get away… Olivia marries her first love–at age 17–and realizes later he’s not what he’d first seemed to be. She falls victim to his fury when his mask finally slips, and she attempts to break free. But she finds herself unwillingly flittering back to a familiar cycle of abuse–one she’d watched her own parents circle for years.

Meanwhile, her twin sister, Gabby, finds sweet love with Jake, a humble, well-mannered southern boy who saves her not once–but twice. However, when she is pursued by a dangerous admirer at work, her happily-ever-after is threatened and may come to an end far too soon.

And there’s little sister, Emma… with her own hidden secrets, painfully bottled up inside of her, wrestling to get out and take revenge.

Amelia’s Story

by D.G Torrens

This is a powerful true story of one young girls struggle to survive the state care system in the 70’s and 80’s. Amelia has just one wish, to make it to adulthood, to hold her destiny in her own hands. This is a harrowing true story, one of survival and human strength. Amelia has been separated from all her siblings never to see them again for many years, she is moved from one children’s home to another, until finally it’s just too much for her to bear. Amelia starts to wonder about the peace and finality of her own death.

Exodus Lost

by S. C. Compton

Exodus Lost reopens cold cases from antiquity and applies cutting-edge science, classical scholarship, and tenacity to solve them. The adventure begins with Aztec and Mayan chronicles of an epic voyage across the Atlantic Ocean. By mapping the details within these texts, the author tracks down their lost homeland and corroborates the local traditions of an ocean-crossing long before Columbus. This discovery leads to new insights into the origins of Mexican and Western civilizations, the Bible (including new archaeological evidence for two major biblical events), the alphabet, and much more. Enter a world of exploration and discovery, mystery and revelation. Whether your passion is archaeology or religion, history or simply a great adventure, Exodus Lost delivers.

Beautifully illustrated with 126 photos, maps, and engravings.

Just Add Water

by Jinx Schwartz

Hetta Coffey is a globe-trotting civil engineer with a swath of failed multi-national affairs in her jet stream.

Plying the San Francisco waterfront, trolling for triceps, her attention is snagged by a parade of passing yachts—especially their predominantly male skippers—and experiences a champagne-induced epiphany: If she had a boat, she could get a man.

In spite of a spectacular ignorance of all things nautical, Hetta buys her dream boat, but a shadowy stalker, an inconvenient body, and Hetta’s own self-destructive foibles imperil her goal. Hetta Coffey brings a whole new meaning to the phrase “sink or swim!”

Sweet Enchantress

by Parris Afton Bonds

Dominique de Bar, proclaimed by some a seductress, by others a sorceress, was the chatelaine of Montlimoux, its mistress of moonlit spires and sunlit meadows, a chatelaine of a peaceful, contented land that time had left behind. Paxton of Wychchester was a leader of men, a conqueror who knew more of war than love. He commanded Dominique’s surrender, taking first her lush holdings and then her vulnerable virgin’s body. But in the sweet ecstasy of their union lay an unexpected twist. Which of them had been seduced, and which truly conquered?

Welcome To Fred

by Brad Whittington

Can you keep a secret? Mark Cloud isn’t sure he buys the whole God thing anymore. The problem is, he can’t really tell anyone. Especially not his dad, the Baptist preacher.

As the last of the modern nomads, a preacher’s family is always on the move, and Mark has learned to cope with life as the new kid in town. At least he’s in a town.

Until he is whisked away behind the Pine Curtain of East Texas to the microscopic community of Fred. There, his urban coping skills fall flat as he fumbles every attempt to fit in. And the girl of his dreams is immune to his Sixties counterculture charm.

But these frustrations fade in comparison to the crisis prompted by a dusty book he finds lodged between the stacks on the library. Before it’s over, Mark will have to face his doubts. And his father.

The Scourge

by A.G. Henley

Seventeen-year-old Groundling, Fennel, is Sightless. She’s never been able to see her lush forest home, but she knows its secrets. She knows how the shadows shift when she passes under a canopy of trees. She knows how to hide in the cool, damp caves when the Scourge comes. She knows how devious and arrogant the Groundlings’ tree-dwelling neighbors, the Lofties, can be.

And she’s always known this day would come–the day she faces the Scourge alone.

The Sightless, like Fenn, are mysteriously protected from the Scourge, the gruesome creatures roaming the forests, reeking of festering flesh and consuming anything–and anyone–living. A Sightless Groundling must brave the Scourge and bring fresh water to the people of the forest. Today, that task becomes Fenn’s.

Fenn will have a Lofty Keeper, Peree, as her companion. Everyone knows the Lofties wouldn’t hesitate to shoot an arrow through the back of an unsuspecting Groundling like Fenn, but Peree seems different. A boy with warm, rough hands who smells like summer, he is surprisingly kind and thoughtful. Although Fenn knows his people are treacherous, she finds herself wanting to trust him.

As their forest community teeters on the brink of war, Fenn and Peree must learn to work together to survive the Scourge and ensure their people’s survival. But when Fenn uncovers a secret that shatters her truths, she’s forced to decide who and what to protect–her people, her growing love for Peree, or the elusive dream of lasting peace in the forest.

Deadly Kisses

by Kerri Cuevas

Aiden Grant has a killer kiss. Literally. And it’s not every reaper who gets to work with the Sixteenth President. Sure, Honest Abe likes to throw out history lessons with reaping assignments, but when you’re favored by the ancients, grim reaper life is pretty sweet for a newly dead seventeen-year-old.

Then things get messy.

Aiden is assigned to reap the soul of Bee, the only girl he has ever loved. When Aiden’s kiss of death fails, intertwining their souls, she is still very much alive and they are both in trouble. The ancients want Bee, who has special powers of her own, and they’ll do anything to get her.

Some rules are meant to be broken, even if that means Aiden must bargain with his own soul to save Bee. Who knew the afterlife could get so complicated?

Finding Esta: Urban Fantasy Paranormal & Mystery

by Shah Wharton

For Luna, each day is not about living and succeeding, but about survival.

Luna has never been popular, in fact, even her parents loath her. She can hardly blame them; her psychic issues do make her a little odd and her only friends — Flo and Ada- are Shadows who exist inside her troubled mind. Although the normal world is all she’s known, it’s a place where she’s never belonged, nor been understood. For Luna, each day is not about living and succeeding, but about survival. That is, until her work as a journalist leads her to investigate the disappearance of baby Esta, snatched from her home over twenty years earlier. Soon, our psychic heroine stumbles upon a series of revelations in a clandestine realm of vampires, weres, and magical alien-supernaturals. Revelations that make her oddities appear perfectly banal in comparison, and obliterate every preconceived idea of the normal world.

Her hunger for truth drives her forward. Yet, the constant physical changes, the undefined blood in her veins, the heightened power of psychic gifts she’s always hated, and an ache to finally belong somewhere, to someone, all force her to make discoveries about herself she could never have imagined.

Ignorance may be bliss, but the truth will set Luna free, if only she can face it.

Things That Make Me Happy

by Sarah Mazor

The children in Miss Happy Morejoy’s preschool class were surprised one morning when their beloved teacher arrived looking sad. The kids found out why Miss Happy’s smile was missing and they were saddened too. But then they reminded her of the power of happy. To chase away the blues, Miss Happy and her preschoolers played the Happy Game, a fun and engaging activity that lifted everyone’s spirit.

Read “Things that Make Me Happy” to or with your children and infuse happiness into their lives.

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