[Free eBook] Cliffhanger by T. J. Middleton [Literary Crime Thriller Satire]

Cliffhanger by T. J. Middleton, a pseudonym for Tim Binding, an award-nominated literary fiction author and screenwriter for assorted British TV comedies, is the 1st novel in his Cliffhanger series of satirical literary fiction crime thrillers, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Ipso Books.

The series is a literary fiction black comedy take on crime thrillers, which explores the slightly demented psyche of middle England via wacky crime hijinx. This installment is a modern-day tale of a man planning the “perfect crime” with the intention of murdering his wife, but initially failing to succeed despite his best efforts, which are further complicated by the eccentricities of his nosy neighbours, leading to escalating crime upon crime as he commits further ones to try and cover up the tracks of the previous.

Offered DRM-free in selected countries worldwide, available at multiple retailers.

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[Free eBook] Except For One Thing by John Russell Fearn [Vintage Crime Thriller]

Except For One Thing by the late British author John Russell Fearn is his vintage standalone crime thriller novel, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press.

This was originally published in 1947 by Stanley Paul using the pseudonym Hugo Blayn. The plot of the story is a precursor to such suspense/crime thrillers such as Alfred Hitchcock’s classic film Dial M For Murder, and is the tale of a man planning to commit “the perfect crime” of ridding himself of his fiancée, with the unwitting aid of a Scotland Yard friend, whose budding suspicions may not come soon enough to stop him in time.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

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[Free eBook] Secret Strangers by Thomas Tessier [Psychological Suspense Horror Thriller]

Secret Strangers by Thomas Tessier, a two-time recipient of the International Horror Guild Award, is his standalone horror suspense thriller novel, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press’ Venture Press imprint.

This was originally published in 1990 by Macdonald This is a psychological horror crime novel (apparently non-supernatural, despite having been filed as a paranormal) centred around a teenager who uncovers a secret about their neighbours which she and her boyfriend decide to use for blackmail, only to find the tables turning upon them as events spiral out of control.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

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[Free eBook] Watch Me by James Carol [Serial Killer Crime Thriller]

Watch Me by British author James Carol is the 2nd novel in his Jefferson Winter series of contemporary mystery/crime thrillers, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Faber & Faber’s Crime imprint.

This is the featured Free Book of the Week in the iTunes UK store, but is also available elsewhere. The series stars a former FBI profiler who now travels the world hunting serial killers, and has the unusual background of having been the son of one. This story takes him to consult for the sheriff in a small town in Louisiana, where a mysterious murder—which may be tied to a past secret—threatens to escalate.

Offered in the UK only, available at selected retailers.

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[Free eBook] Code of Conduct by Kristine Smith [Science Fiction Thriller]

Code of Conduct by Kristine Smith, the 2001 recipient of the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer, is the 1st novel in her Jani Kilian Chronicles of far-future science fiction thrillers, free for a limited time courtesy of the author herself via the backlist author re-publishing consortium Book View Café.

This was originally published in 1999 by Avon’s Eos imprint. The series contains space opera, MilSF, and political intrigue elements, and stars a disgraced former captain turned fugitive cyborg, The Six Million Dollar Man-style. This installment has a touch of murder mystery in it, as a former lover who managed to track her down asks her to help him find his wife’s killer, and she must secretly return to the Commonwealth she once fled in order to do so.

Offered DRM-free worldwide through the month of March, available directly from the publisher as well as via several other retailers.

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[Free eBook] dozens of freebies during Smashwords Read an Ebook Week sale [Fiction & Non-Fiction]

Today is the last day of the annual Smashwords Read an Ebook Week Sale, and dozens of previously-published free ebooks are being given away (alongside thousands more by indie authors). These are all DRM-free, available worldwide, and will require signing up for an account with them (no payment info needed), ending midnight tonight (March 11th), probably Eastern Time (possibly Pacific).

For free, Canadian backlist publisher BevEditions has an excellent selection of Canadian fiction and non-fiction in many genres, including history, biography, true crime, mysteries, historical and literary fiction, mostly previously published during the 1980s and 1990s by major publishers such as Doubleday and HarperCollins, including works by historian Marian Fowler, Arthur Ellis Award-winning mystery author Lyn Hamilton, Jewish-Canadian Order of Canada recipient Morley Torgov (whose works have been adapted into film), and many more. I’ve read several of these in the past, and highly recommend picking up the lot if you can get it.

I apologize for the very short notice on this. My internet has been down, and I’m posting this from the library. NB: Smashwords’ site is currently buggy, so to get the freebies (or purchase discounted books), you’ll have to add the book to your cart by choosing to ignore the expired coupon warning, then manually apply the coupon code (e.g. SFREE) from the book’s product page, to see the discount price appear before checking out. For the most efficient “shopping”, add a bunch of stuff to your cart first, and then copy-paste the coupon code into their respective boxes, and hit “Apply Coupon” at the bottom to have them all discount at once.

To browse the other freebies offered, start here at the Smashwords Read an EBook Week Sale dedicated promo page, then you can pick a genre category from the sidebar, and use the price/coupon categories to refine your results. I advise checking the SFREE 100% off category first, as the regular Free page will pull up things which are not necessarily part of the limited-time promo, but offered free as their usual price.

Also, if you are interested in reprints of 1980s/1990s science fiction, fantasy, horror, and mystery, the following imprints are offering 50% off previously-published works by authors such as Craig Shaw Gardner (humorous light fantasy formerly out from Ace Books), Elizabeth Ann Scarborough (Nebula-nominated, and one of my favourite fantasy authors), Bill Pronzini, Melissa Scott (John W. Campbell Best New Writer winner, and also a Lambda Literary Award-nominee), World Fantasy Award winner Robert Holdstock, and many more: Crossroad Press, Untreed Reads, Infinity Plus, Gypsy Shadow Publishing

If you happen to miss something, many of these publishers also participate in the Smashwords July sale, and will probably also do Read an Ebook Week next year as well.

[Free eBook] Night Frost by Basil Copper [Vintage Mystery/Crime Thriller]

Night Frost by the late British author Basil Copper, perhaps best known for his contributions to the Solar Pons series which was a popular Sherlock Holmes pastiche back in the day, is the 2nd novel in his Mike Faraday series of gritty hard-boiled mystery/crime thrillers, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Endeavour Press’ Venture imprint.

This was originally published in 1966. This long-running popular series (over 40 books published between the 1960s and the 1980s) stars a hard-boiled California P.I. with a sharp sense of humour. The story takes him out of Los Angeles, to a busman’s holiday in the Bahamas, where what he’d hoped would be a relaxing getaway embroils him into solving a mafia murder.

Offered worldwide, available at Amazon.

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[Free eBook] The Executioner by Chris Carter [Police Procedural Thriller]

The Executioner by Chris Carter, (no relation to the eponymous creator of The X-Files), is the 2nd novel in his Robert Hunter series of police procedural thrillers, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Simon & Schuster UK.

The series stars a Los Angeles police detective vs assorted serial killers. This installment pits him against a murderer who at first appears potentially ritualistic but may in fact be terrifyingly random, with an uncanny ability to seemingly read his victims’ minds.

Offered in the UK only, available at multiple retailers.

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[Free eBook] Manhattan Loverboy by Arthur Nersesian [Literary Identity Thriller Satire]

Manhattan Loverboy by Armenian-American author Arthur Nersesian, a recipient of the Anahid Literary Prize for Armenian literature, is his standalone contemporary literary identity thriller satire novel, free for a limited time courtesy of publisher Akashic Books.

This is a darkly comedic literary/weird fiction thriller novel which is grouped under Akashic’s multi-author Urban Surreal series. The story is a Kafka-esque paranoid social satire taking the standard journey of self-discovery, and applying it to an urban orphan from New York City who travels the world seeking answers to his true identity, eventually confronting the corporate executive who seems to be behind his myriad strange woes.

Offered DRM-free through midnight December 23rd, available worldwide directly from the publisher as the final offering in their generous holiday advent calendar promotion.

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[Free eBook] Hundreds of Free Books from Open Road Media [All Genres Fiction & Non-Fiction]

As a special holiday treat, publisher Open Road Media is making free literally hundreds of ebooks in every genre, for a limited time.

ORM was founded by ex-Random House editors, and has made a specialty of bringing back into print older works by well-known authors in their fields, as well as publishing newer works by them as well.

The freebies in their catalogue includes authors such as Howard Fast (author of Spartacus, the novel which the movie was based upon), Alice Walker (author of The Color Purple, also the basis of a film), Pearl S. Buck (Nobel Prize winner), and many more.

A very brief sampling of the genres and authors available (there’s literally probably something for every taste):

  • For non-fiction: history (Walter Lord, author of A Night to Remember, which a film about the Titanic was based upon); political history (Rebecca West); literary & arts criticism (Mary McCarthy); travel writing (Laurence Durrell); cookbooks (James Beard); biographies (Marion Meade); autobiographies (Candy Darling, a celebrity involved with Andy Warhol); author advice (Richard Curtis, a former literary agent)
  • For fiction: science fiction & fantasy (Andre Norton, Jane Yolen, Robert Silverberg, Poul Anderson, all SFWA Grandmasters); historical fiction (Cecelia Holland); westerns (Paul Lederer); murder mystery novels (Susan Dunlap); suspense thrillers (Geoffrey Household); LGBT novelists (National Book Award-winner Paul Monette, Jane Rule, and more); romance (Elizabeth Chadwick); YA suspense (Caroline B. Cooney); YA fantasy (Bruce Coville); YA horror (Diane Hoh); childrens’ picture books (The Berenstain Bears series)

Offered in the US only, at Amazon only, through December 20th or 21st. Unfortunately, it looks like the promotion was withdrawn early on the 19th. Nice while it lasted, though.

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