Amazon First Reads December

Al Woodworth on December 16, 2019
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December’s Amazon First Reads will keep you on “the edge of your seat;” will “break your heart open, in the best way”; encourage your little ones to have “bath-time silliness of their own”; and will “linger…for weeks after reading.” From gripping novels of suspense and romance, to a tragic true story of a basketball team’s road to redemption, and a historical novel set in the Alaska frontier, this month’s picks offer something for every reader.

Check back next month for more picks from Amazon First Reads.


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Lost Hills by Lee Goldberg

The bestselling author Michael Connelly raves about Lee Goldberg’s newest series – “Lost Hills is Lee Goldberg at his best. Inspired by the real-world grit and glitz of LA County crime, this book takes no prisoners. And neither does Eve Ronin. Take a ride with her and you’ll find yourself with a heroine for the ages. And you’ll be left hoping for more.” What more is there to say?


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Unspeakable Things by Jess Lourey

Inspired by the terrifying true story from her hometown, Jess Lourey’s Unspeakable Things is a heart-pounding look at the evil that surrounds a small Minnesota town. When local boys begin to go missing and return violent, withdrawn—changed—Cassie is determined to figure out what’s going on in the dark and dangerous corners of her home. If she is to survive, Cassie must find her way in an adult world where every sin is justified, and only the truth is unforgivable. Lourey’s editor describes the book as a “cross between Stephen King’s The Body and Megan Abbott’s The Fever…that is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat.”


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We Will Rise: A True Story of Tragedy and Resurrection in the American Heartland by Steve Beaven

Calling all sports fans. As the editors of the book, Barry Harbaugh and Erin Calligan Mooney write, “here is the greatest story of basketball you’ve never heard.” On December 13, 1977, the entire five-time champion basketball team from the University of Evansville perished in a plane crash—just four games into their season, which promised to catapult them to the national stage. We Will Rise is the page-turning story of the tragedy, the rebuilding, and the new team that came together to honor the legacy of the game their peers played so well.

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Naughty Ninja Takes a Bath by Todd Tarpley, illustrated by Vin Vogel

It’s not every month that Amazon First Reads offers a children’s book and this month it’s a “splashtastic” story for bath time. Will is a Ninja, ready to protect anyone and everyone who needs protecting--especially at bath time when the bath toys begin to go after his dad. A bubbly adventure of Ninja’s in the tub, this book is “sure to leave your little ninjas wanting some bathtub silliness of their own,” says Tarpley’s editor, Kelsey Skea.


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This Is Not How It Ends by Rochelle B. Weinstein

This Is Not How It Ends is a tender, moving story of heartbreak and healing that asks the question: Which takes more courage—holding on or letting go? Charlotte Myers is caught between two love stories – her fiancé and a man named Ben who is supportive in ways she never knew she desired. But when a hurricane passes through, Charlotte is forced to examine the choices she’s made and wonder if there’s really such a thing as a second chance. The editor of the book shared “This Is Not How It Ends, by Rochelle B. Weinstein, is one of those rare books that consistently breaks my heart wide open, but in the best way possible."


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Toward the Midnight Sun by Eoin Dempsey

Toward the Midnight Sun will transport you to the turn of the 20th century in Alaska – when the Klondike Gold Rush enticed prospectors  to journey to the freezing and lawless lands of the Yukon in search of gold. It’s here that Anna Denton finds herself – not in search of gold, but of a husband to shore up her family’s wealth. As the brutal winter sets in, Anna is caught between the promises she made for her family, her beguiling guide, and the dangerous and deadly corrupter at the heart of it all – Klondike, her betrothed. Eoin Dempsey’s editor, Chris Warner, describes he book as “cinematic, sweeping, and full of adventure and romance.”


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A Beginners Guide to Freefall by Andy Abramowitz

A Beginners Guide to Freefall by Andy Abramowitz takes place over one turbulent summer for two siblings, Davis and Molly. Davis had it all – until he didn’t, and his sister Molly whose journalism career is steeped in the relationship between mothers and daughters must confront her own mother’s actions when she disappeared years ago. Over the course of the summer, these two siblings rely on each other to get them through life’s sharp and unexpected turns. At turns hilarious and heartwarming, Abramowitz’s editor calls it a “pitch-perfect story of a family trying to find it’s way back to each other – and the wild ride that ensues.”


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I Choose You by Gayle Curtis

I Choose You by Gayle Curtis is a tense psychological thriller—that for Curtis’s editor “lingered…for weeks after reading.” Thirty years ago, Elise and Nathaniel shared a horrific trauma that united them in grief. Now, grown up and married with a young family, they feel their worst nightmares are behind them. Until the day their daughter is abducted and murdered. Both Elise and Nathaniel lost their mothers to a notorious killer, why are they being targeted again? Why are they blaming Elise's family? And who can they trust if not the ones they love?



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