The Great Big ARC Giveaway of 2013!

Yes, indeed, it’s freebie time! Leave a comment
below and on as many other posts as you want
between now and the end of the day next
Saturday, December 7th. Each comment will
earn you an entry into the random drawing for
one of these fine ARCs (and occasional finished
books). You can state preferences but I make no
promises 😉 Open to US and Canadian residents.
Winners will be announced Sunday, December 8th.

Stay at Home DeadStay at Home Dead by Jeffrey Allen (2012)—It’s a day like any other for Deuce Winters, a stay-at-home dad in sleepy Rose Petal, Texas, where he and his three-year-old daughter Carly are making their weekly trip to the grocery store. But the discovery of a dead body in his mini-van quickly throws his quiet life into disarray. In a town where gossip spreads faster than a brush fire in July, it doesn’t help that the victim ruined Deuce’s high school football career and married his ex-girlfriend. . .As the number one suspect in the court of public opinion, Deuce is determined to clear his name, with a little help from his wife Julianne, a high-powered attorney who lovingly refers to him as her “househusband.” His search for the killer leads him to a business plan gone awry and a gaggle of jilted lovers. All the while, he’ll have to contend with a diminutive but feisty detective, the ruthless preschool PTA, and more than his fair share of Texas-sized hairdos–not to mention the laundry. . .

The Phoenix ApostlesThe Phoenix Apostles by Lynn Sholes & Joe Moore (2011)—Magazine journalist Seneca Hunt is reporting on the opening of Montezuma’s tomb in Mexico City when the dig team learns that the remains of the Aztec emperor are missing. Within moments of the discovery, an apparent terrorist attack kills everyone at the site except Seneca, who barely escapes the carnage. Determined to get answers, Seneca starts investigating. She finds out that someone is stealing the remains of the most infamous mass murderers in history-and plotting to slaughter millions in the name of an ancient cult. Seneca needs to prove the threat really exists while trying to stay one step ahead of those who want her dead. With time running out, she must follow a deadly 2,000-year-old trail that leads back to the death of Jesus Christ.

Dark SoulsDark Souls by Paula Morris (2011)—Welcome to York, England. Mist lingers in the streets. Narrow buildings cast long shadows. This is the most haunted city in the world. . . .Miranda Tennant arrives in York with a terrible, tragic secret. She is eager to lose herself amid the quaint cobblestones, hoping she won’t run into the countless ghosts who supposedly roam the city. . . .Then she meets Nick, an intense, dark-eyed boy who knows all of York’s hidden places and histories. Miranda wonders if Nick is falling for her, but she is distracted by another boy — one even more handsome and mysterious than Nick. He lives in the house across from Miranda and seems desperate to send her some sort of message. Could this boy be one of York’s haunted souls? Soon, Miranda realizes that something dangerous — and deadly — is being planned. And she may have to face the darkest part of herself in order to unravel the mystery — and find redemption.

Across the Great BarrierAcross the Great Barrier by Patricia C. Wrede (2011)—Eff is riding west, away from the safety of the frontier city she’s always known…. Eff could be a powerful magician if she wanted to. Except she’s not sure she wants that kind of responsibility. Everyone keeps waiting for her to do something amazing–or to fail in a spectacular way. Worse, her twin brother, Lan, a powerful double seventh son, is jealous of all the attention she’s been getting. Even as Eff protests that she’s just an ordinary girl, she’s asked to travel past the Barrier Spell with one of the new professors at her father’s school. The land west of the Barrier is full of dangers, both magical and wild. Eff will need to use all her strength–magical and otherwise–to come safely back home.

The VaultThe Vault by Boyd Morrison (2011)—Tyler Locke’s routine commute on a Washington State ferry is interrupted by a chilling anonymous call: his father has been kidnapped, and a truck bomb is set to detonate on board in twenty minutes. When Tyler reaches the bomb on the boat’s car deck, he’s stunned to find classical languages expert Stacy Benedict waiting for him. She’s received the same threat, and her sister has also been taken. In order to disarm the bomb, Tyler and Stacy must work together to solve an engineering puzzle—a puzzle written in ancient Greek. But preventing the explosion is only the first step; they soon learn the entire setup is a test created by a ruthless criminal who forces them to go on a seemingly impossible mission: uncover the legendary lost riches of King Midas.

A Dublin Student DoctorA Dublin Student Doctor by Patrick Taylor (2011)—In the 1930s, fresh from a stint in the Royal Navy Reserve, and against the wishes of his disapproving father, Fingal O’Reilly goes to Dublin to study medicine. Fingal and his fellow aspiring doctors face the arduous demands of Trinity College and Sir Patrick Dun’s Hospital. The hours are long and the cases challenging, but Fingal manages to find time to box and play rugby—and to romance a fetching, gray-eyed nurse named Kitty O’Hallorhan. Dublin is a city of slums and tenements, where brutal poverty breeds diseases that the limited medical knowledge of the time is often ill-equipped to handle. His teachers warn Fingal not to become too attached to his patients, but can he truly harden himself to the suffering he sees all around him—or can he find a way to care for his patients without breaking his heart?

The Big Cat NapThe Big Cat Nap by Rita Mae Brown (2012)—It’s mid-May, and Crozet, Virginia, is heating up fast, or so it seems to Harry. The town’s beloved ex–post mistress is never idle, dividing her time between raising this year’s bounty of crops; taking care of her veterinarian husband, Fair; indulging her passion for classic cars; and adding further to her reputation as a nosy neighbor. It starts when Harry’s dear friend Miranda Hogendobber takes her on a leisurely drive that ends in a narrow drainage ditch. The chaos continues when the Very Reverend Herbert Jones’s Chevy pick-up also abruptly goes kaput. But these vehicular mishaps are nothing compared to the much more distressing state of a mechanic discovered by Harry in a local repair shop: His head’s been bashed in. Despite numerous warnings from her much-loved coterie of friends, human and otherwise, Harry rather quickly surmises that the time has come to pop the hood and conduct her own investigation. Her animal companions see disaster fast approaching but can do little except try their best to protect their foolishly intrepid human. Harry’s race to the truth leads straight to powerful forces determined to avoid scrutiny at any cost—even if it means running Harry Haristeen off the road for good.

Eyes To SeeEyes to See by Joseph Nassise (2011)—Jeremiah Hunt has been broken by a malevolent force that has taken his young daughter and everything else of value in his life: his marriage, his career, his reputation. Desperate to reclaim what he has lost, Hunt finally turns to the supernatural for justice. Abandoning all hope for a normal life, he enters the world of ghosts and even more dangerous entities from beyond the grave. Sacrificing his normal sight so that he can see the souls of the dead and the powers that stalk his worst nightmares, Hunt embarks upon a strange new career—a pariah among the living; a scourge among the dead; doomed to walk between the light of day and the deepest darkness beyond night. His love for his departed daughter sustains him when all is most hopeless, but Hunt is cursed by something more evil than he can possibly imagine. As he descends into the maelstrom of his terrifying quest, he discovers that even his deepest fears are but prelude to yet darker deeds by a powerful entity from beyond the grave…that will not let him go until it has used him for its own nefarious purposes.

AwakeningsAwakenings by Edward Lazellari (2011)—Cal MacDonnell is a happily married New York City cop with a loving family. Seth Raincrest is a washed-up photographer who has alienated even his closest friends. The two have nothing in common—except that they both suffer from retrograde amnesia. It’s as if they just appeared out of thin air thirteen years ago, and nothing has been able to restore their memories. Now their forgotten past has caught up to them with a vengeance. Cal’s and Seth’s lives are turned upside down as they are stalked by otherworldly beings who know about the men’s past lives. But these creatures aren’t here to help; they’re intent on killing anyone who gets in their way. In the balance hangs the life of a child who might someday restore a broken empire to peace and prosperity. With no clue why they’re being hunted, Cal and Seth must accept the aid of a strange and beautiful woman who has promised to unlock their secrets. The two must stay alive long enough to protect their loved ones, recover their true selves—and save two worlds from tyranny and destruction.

Gideon's SwordGideon’s Sword by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child (2011)—At twelve, Gideon Crew witnessed his father, a world-class mathematician, accused of treason and gunned down. At twenty-four, summoned to his dying mother’s bedside, Gideon learned the truth: His father was framed and deliberately slaughtered. With her last breath, she begged her son to avenge him. Now, with a new purpose in his life, Gideon crafts a one-time mission of vengeance, aimed at the perpetrator of his father’s destruction. His plan is meticulous, spectacular, and successful. But from the shadows, someone is watching. A very powerful someone, who is impressed by Gideon’s special skills. Someone who has need of just such a renegade. For Gideon, this operation may be only the beginning . . .

Trapped NorthropTrapped by Michael Northrop (2011)—The day the blizzard started, no one knew that it was going to keep snowing for a week. That for those in its path, it would become not just a matter of keeping warm, but of staying alive. . . Scotty and his friends Pete and Jason are among the last seven kids at their high school waiting to get picked up that day, and they soon realize that no one is coming for them. Still, it doesn’t seem so bad to spend the night at school, especially when distractingly hot Krista and Julie are sleeping just down the hall. But then the power goes out, then the heat. The pipes freeze, and the roof shudders. As the days add up, the snow piles higher, and the empty halls grow colder and darker, the mounting pressure forces a devastating decision. . . .

A Sheetcake Named DesireA Sheetcake Named Desire by Jacklyn Brady (2011)—New Orleans pastry chef Rita Lucero is out to bake her way to the top. But when she finds her almost-ex-husband killed with a chef’s knife in his back, she becomes suspect number one. Now it’s up to her to find the real killer before she winds up as the next victim served.

Dog in the MangerDog in the Manger by Mike Resnick (2012/1995)—A dog is missing. Not just any dog. The number one Weimaraner in the country and current Westminster winner. Down-on-his-luck private eye Eli Paxton is hired to find him. Not exactly an elite assignment, but better than nothing. Maybe it will help him pay his rent. It turns out to be anything but a routine case. People start dying in mysterious ways, a cargo plane goes missing, and someone is taking shots at him. It makes no sense. Even a top show dog isn’t worth that much. Now the hunt is on. Paxton needs to find this dog to save his own skin. The trail leads to Arizona, then Mexico, and finally back to his hometown of Cincinnati- Where he finds the startling solution.

TornTorn by Margaret Peterson Haddix (2011)—Still reeling from their experiences in Roanoke in 1600, Jonah and Katherine arrive in 1611 only moments before a mutiny on Henry Hudson’s ship in the icy waters of James Bay. But things are messed up: they’ve lost the real John Hudson, and they find what seems to be the fabled Northwest Passage—even though they are pretty sure that that route doesn’t actually exist. Will this new version of history replace the real past? Is this the end of time as we know it? With more at stake than ever before, Jonah and Katherine struggle to unravel the mysteries of 1611 and the Hudson Passage…before everything they know is lost.

Play NicePlay Nice by Gemma Halliday (2012)—Anya Danielovich was an assassin in her former life. But that was a long time ago. Today she’s just Anna Smith—a single, thirtysomething woman living in San Francisco with a simple desire to lead a better life. But she’s still haunted by her past—the people she killed, the mentor she betrayed, the woman she was. She’s taken care to cover her tracks, but she’s beginning to feel like she’s being watched…Nick Dade is a hired gunman—the best of the best. He’s read Anya’s file and, after weeks of surveillance, he’s ready to pull the trigger…until someone else beats him to the punch. With his agenda shattered, Nick suddenly finds himself thrown together with the woman he’s been sent to eliminate. Who is she really? Who hired the second hit? And who can he trust? Together Nick and Anna find themselves embroiled in a web of deceit and desire as an unknown enemy closes in. To unravel the truth, Anna must face her past even if that means risking both Nick’s life and her own.

Mind Over MonstersMind Over Monsters by Jennifer Harlow (2011)—Beatrice Alexander is no ordinary schoolteacher—she can move objects with her mind, an embarrassing skill she hasn’t yet mastered or embraced. After nearly killing her brother by accident, she joins the F.R.E.A.K.S. Squad, the Federal Response to Extra-Sensory and Kindred Supernaturals. This top-secret branch of the FBI combats ghosts, ghouls, and other monsters threatening humanity. With her teammates—among them a handsome former-detective werewolf and an annoying Don Juan vampire who’s dead-set on seducing her—Beatrice investigates her first case. Disgustingly dismembered bodies have turned up, bearing bite marks of the undead. Someone—or something—is raising a horde of hideous, bloodthirsty zombies. Armed with Bette, her trusty machete, Beatrice takes on the master of the flesh-devouring corpses, who’s guarding a horrifying secret . . .

Dying for a DanceDying for a Dance by Cindy Sample (2011)—It takes two to tango-but only one to murder. Lead-footed single mom, Laurel McKay, agrees to learn a foxtrot routine for her best friend’s wedding. After she trips her instructor, crashes into a pair of dancers and breaks the heel of her new shoes, she thinks her evening can’t possibly get any worse. Then she stumbles over another dancer. A dead one. With her broken stiletto heel stuffed in his mouth. The action moves from the California Gold Country to Lake Tahoe as Laurel searches for the killer amid the sequins and flying feathers of a ballroom competition. Can she samba her way into the heart of the handsome detective who has once again entered her life? Or will dancing and detecting prove to be a lethal combination? One, two, three, four. Too many suspects on this dance floor. Five, six, seven, eight. Find the murderer before it’s too late.

WitherWither by Lauren DeStefano (2011)—By age sixteen, Rhine Ellery has four years left to live. She can thank modern science for this genetic time bomb. A botched effort to create a perfect race has left all males with a lifespan of 25 years, and females with a lifespan of 20 years. Geneticists are seeking a miracle antidote to restore the human race, desperate orphans crowd the population, crime and poverty have skyrocketed, and young girls are being kidnapped and sold as polygamous brides to bear more children. When Rhine is kidnapped and sold as a bride, she vows to do all she can to escape. Her husband, Linden, is hopelessly in love with her, and Rhine can’t bring herself to hate him as much as she’d like to. He opens her to a magical world of wealth and illusion she never thought existed, and it almost makes it possible to ignore the clock ticking away her short life. But Rhine quickly learns that not everything in her new husband’s strange world is what it seems. Her father-in-law, an eccentric doctor bent on finding the antidote, is hoarding corpses in the basement. Her fellow sister wives are to be trusted one day and feared the next, and Rhine is desperate to communicate to her twin brother that she is safe and alive. Will Rhine be able to escape—before her time runs out? Together with one of Linden’s servants, Gabriel, Rhine attempts to escape just before her seventeenth birthday. But in a world that continues to spiral into anarchy, is there any hope for freedom?

Port City Black and WhitePort City Black and White by Gerry Boyle (2011)—Brandon Blake, the tough and resourceful kid from the Portland waterfront, has made it. He’s been hired by the Portland Police Department, partly as payback for stopping a vicious cop killer in PORT CITY SHAKEDOWN. But the newest rookie on the night shift isn’t pulling any punches. And when a drug-addled mom can’t find her baby, Blake—whose mother left him and was killed when he was a toddler—comes down on her hard. Except the baby really is gone. Meanwhile, Blake’s girlfriend, aspiring writer Mia, sees Brandon drifting into the world of cops and crime and leaving her behind. Brandon’s relentless search for the child brings a load of trouble down on him, threatens his career, his life, his relationship. Will he end up alone on his old cabin cruiser Bay Witch? Or worse?

Dark Mirror 2Dark Mirror by Barry Maitland (2009)—A student in the Reading Room of the London Library, Marion Summers, suddenly goes into a seizure, then slips into a coma and then dies.  But what first appears to be a simple tragedy, is soon revealed to be  much more sinister.  During the autopsy, it’s determined that she actually died of acute arsenic poisoning. Brought to the attention of the Serious Crime Unit of Scotland Yard, the newly promoted Detective Inspector Kathy Kolla, with the help of her superior, DCI David Brock, investigate the mysterious Summers, leading them to suspect her death was related to unexplained and unusual aspects of her recent life.  The more they investigate, the more confounding the mystery becomes and the more clear it is that behind what really happened – and why – lies the most difficult-to-crack case Kolla and Brock have ever faced.

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