Book Giveaway: Hot Reads For Summer's End!

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Summer is getting away from us, and I have to admit I’m not terribly saddened by that. Fall has always been my favorite season, but I do dislike the way people refer to the upcoming school year as back to the books like that’s a bad thing.

Um…. I’ve been reading books all summer, thank you very much.

I thought I’d give away some of those books so that you can squeeze in a few more reads in the month of August!

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman: Delivers a quirky and charming novel chronicling the life of confirmed introvert Nina Hill as she does her best to fly under everyone's radar.

The only child of a single mother, Nina has her life just as she wants it: a job in a bookstore, a kick-butt trivia team, a world-class planner and a cat named Phil. If she sometimes suspects there might be more to life than reading, she just shrugs and picks up a new book.

When the father Nina never knew existed suddenly dies, leaving behind innumerable sisters, brothers, nieces, and nephews, Nina is horrified. They all live close by! They're all—or mostly all—excited to meet her! She'll have to Speak. To. Strangers. It's a disaster! And as if that wasn't enough, Tom, her trivia nemesis, has turned out to be cute, funny, and deeply interested in getting to know her. Doesn't he realize what a terrible idea that is?

Nina considers her options.
1. Completely change her name and appearance. (Too drastic, plus she likes her hair.)
2. Flee to a deserted island. (Hard pass, see: coffee).
3. Hide in a corner of her apartment and rock back and forth. (Already doing it.)

It's time for Nina to come out of her comfortable shell, but she isn't convinced real life could ever live up to fiction. It's going to take a brand-new family, a persistent suitor, and the combined effects of ice cream and trivia to make her turn her own fresh page.

How Could She? by Lauren Mechling: An assured and savagely funny novel about three old friends as they navigate careers, husbands, an ex-fiancé, new suitors, and, most importantly, their relationships with one another.

After a devastating break-up with her fiancé, Geraldine is struggling to get her life back on track in Toronto. Her two old friends, Sunny and Rachel, left ages ago for New York, where they've landed good jobs, handsome husbands, and unfairly glamorous lives (or at least so it appears to Geraldine). Sick of watching from the sidelines, Geraldine decides to force the universe to give her the big break she knows she deserves, and moves to New York City.

As she zigzags her way through the downtown art scene and rooftop party circuit, she discovers how hard it is to find her footing in a world of influencers and media darlings. Meanwhile, Sunny's life as an It Girl watercolorist is not nearly as charmed as it seemed to Geraldine from Toronto. And Rachel is trying to keep it together as a new mom, writer, and wife--how is it that she was more confident and successful at twenty-five than in her mid-thirties? Perhaps worst of all, why are Sunny and Rachel--who've always been suspicious of each other--suddenly hanging out without Geraldine?

Hilarious and fiercely observed, How Could She is an essential novel of female friendship, an insider's look into the cutthroat world of New York media--from print to podcasting--and a witty exploration of the ways we can and cannot escape our pasts.

Don’t miss my podcast episode with Lauren where she talks writing, publishing, and the crossroads of writing a novel set in the publishing world.

The Orphan’s Song by Lauren Kate: a sweeping love story about family and music--and the secrets each hold--that follows the intertwined fates of two Venetian orphans.

Venice, 1736. When fate brings Violetta and Mino together on the roof of the Hospital of the Incurables, they form a connection that will change their lives forever. Both are orphans at the Incurables, dreaming of escape. But when the resident Maestro notices Violetta's voice, she is selected for the Incurables' world famous coro, and must sign an oath never to sing beyond its church doors.

After a declaration of love ends in heartbreak, Mino flees the Incurables in search of his family. Known as the "city of masks," Venice is full of secrets, and Mino is certain one will lead to his long-lost mother. Without him, the walls close in on Violetta and she begins a dangerous and forbidden nightlife, hoping her voice can secure her freedom. But neither finds what they are looking for, until a haunting memory Violetta has suppressed since childhood leads them to a shocking confrontation.

Vibrant with the glamour and beauty of Venice at its zenith, The Orphan's Song takes us on a breathtaking journey of passion, heartbreak, and betrayal before it crescendos to an unforgettable ending, a celebration of the enduring nature and transformative power of love.

Don’t miss my podcast episode with Lauren where she talks about her research for The Orphan’s Song, plus writing for the YA market versus the adult market.

Summer Thrillers Giveaway! Jeffery Deaver, Lisa Scottoline, Gillian McAllister & Bev Thomas!

I’ve got literal stacks of books around the house right now, so I thought it was time to give a few away. Here’s a collection of brand new, super fan thrillers for your summer beach reads! Check out the descriptions and enter to win below!

The Good Sister by Gillian McAllister: An electrifying novel about the unyielding bond between two sisters, which is severely tested when one of them is accused of the worst imaginable crime.

Martha and Becky Blackwater are more than sisters--they're each other's lifelines. When Martha finds herself struggling to balance early motherhood and her growing business, Becky steps in to babysit her niece, Layla, without a second thought, bringing the two women closer than ever. But when Layla is found dead one morning, at only eight weeks old, Becky is charged with the unthinkable: the murder of her sister's child.

Nine months later, Becky is on trial and maintains her innocence--and so does Martha. Unable to shake the feeling that her sister couldn't possibly be guilty, Martha sets out to uncover exactly what happened that night, and how things could have gone so wrong. As the trial progresses, fault lines between the sisters begin to show--revealing cracks deep in their relationship and threatening the family each has worked so hard to build. With incredible empathy and resounding emotional heft, The Good Sister is a powerhouse of a novel that will lead readers to question everything they know about motherhood, family, and the price of forgiveness.

A Good Enough Mother by Bev Thomas: A riveting page-turner that lets us inside the secret world of therapist and patient, where boundaries get crossed, and events spiral out of control. . .

Ruth Hartland is a psychotherapist with years of experience. But professional skill is no guard against private grief. The mother of grown twins, she is haunted by the fact that her beautiful, difficult, fragile son Tom, a boy who never "fit in," disappeared a year and a half earlier. She cannot give up hope of finding him, but feels she is living a kind of half-life, waiting for him to return.

Enter a new patient, Dan--unstable and traumatized--who looks exactly like her missing son. She is determined to help him, but soon, her own complicated feelings, about how she has failed her own boy, cloud her professional judgement. And before long, the unthinkable becomes a shattering reality....

An utterly compelling drama with a timebomb at its core, A Good Enough Mother is a brilliant, beautiful story of mothering, and how to let go of the ones we love when we must.

The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver: From the bestselling and award-winning master of suspense, the first novel in a thrilling new series, introducing Colter Shaw.

"You have been abandoned."

A young woman has gone missing in Silicon Valley and her father has hired Colter Shaw to find her. The son of a survivalist family, Shaw is an expert tracker. Now he makes a living as a "reward seeker," traveling the country to help police solve crimes and private citizens locate missing persons. But what seems a simple investigation quickly thrusts him into the dark heart of America's tech hub and the cutthroat billion-dollar video-gaming industry.

"Escape if you can."

When another victim is kidnapped, the clues point to one video game with a troubled past--The Whispering Man. In that game, the player has to survive after being abandoned in an inhospitable setting with five random objects. Is a madman bringing the game to life?

"Or die with dignity."

Shaw finds himself caught in a cat-and-mouse game, risking his own life to save the victims even as he pursues the kidnapper across both Silicon Valley and the dark 'net. Encountering eccentric game designers, trigger-happy gamers and ruthless tech titans, he soon learns that he isn't the only one on the hunt: someone is on his trail and closing fast.

Someone Knows by Lisa Scottoline: From the New York Times-bestselling author comes a pulse-pounding domestic thriller about a group of friends who have been bound for twenty years by a single secret—and will now be undone by it. Someone Knows is an emotional exploration of friendship and family, as well as a psychological exploration of guilt and memory.

Twenty years ago, in an upscale suburb of Philadelphia, four teenagers spent a summer as closest friends: drinking, sharing secrets, testing boundaries. When a new boy looked to join them, they decided to pull a prank on him, convincing him to play Russian roulette as an initiation into their group. They secretly planned to leave the gun unloaded—but what happened next would change each of them forever.

Now three of the four reunite for the first time since that horrible summer. The guilt—and the lingering question about who loaded the gun—drove them apart. But after one of the group apparently commits suicide with a gun, their old secrets come roaring back. One of them is going to figure out if the new suicide is what it seems, and if it connects to the events of that long-ago summer. Someone knows exactly what happened—but who? And how far will they go to keep their secrets buried?

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Of All The Books In All The Stores & Libraries In All The World...

I get dizzy when I go into bookstores and libraries. Physically dizzy.

Granted, I do have vertigo but I don't think that's necessarily what sets me off every time. I think it's the limitless possibilities I see in front of me, the stacks and piles of books that I couldn't plow through in an entire lifetime even if I dedicated every minute that I have to just reading.

And yes, there's an element of bittersweetness to that. I'm highly aware that I won't ever make it through my TBR pile, and that if my tombstone listed all the books I wanted to read but didn't get to it would be bigger than the Washington Monument. That makes me a little bit sad, but it's also a testament to the nearly inexhaustible choices all readers have.

And of all those books, quite a few of you have picked me.

Awwwww....

No, seriously. I'm not lying when I say that I sometimes walk into bookstores with full intent to find my stock and sign it, then I end up browsing, reading, lounging, buying, and walking back out having never even glanced at my own book. And I'm the author.

So HUGE thanks to everyone that went into a bookstore or library with the intention of picking up something with my name on it, and equal thanks to anyone that browsed, spotted my cover, read the flap and thought, "Sure, I'll give this McGinnis girl a try."

You're awesome.