Amazon First Reads for February 2019: Where the Forest Meets the Stars by Glendy Vanderah, Perfect Child by Lucinda Berry, Broken Circle by Enjeela Ahmadi-Miller, Fever King by Victoria Lee, What the Wind Knows by Amy Harmon, and It's Not Hansel and Gretel by Josh Funk

Amazon First Reads program is an amazing deal that not many people seem to know about.

As per the website:  The Amazon First Reads program gives Amazon First Reads members the opportunity to download a Kindle book from our editors’ picks each month before the official publication date, for $1.99 – Prime members receive it for free. Customers can also shop editors’ picks in hardcover at exclusive prices. New titles are announced on the 1st of each month. (source)

I’m always surprised when I find out that people aren’t aware of this program, but it’s well worth signing up! Granted, some month’s picks are better than others and I sometimes skip a month, but it’s a fun way to discover new titles! And did I mention that it’s FREE?

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February’s First Read titles:


After the loss of her mother and her own battle with breast cancer, Joanna Teale returns to her graduate research on nesting birds in rural Illinois, determined to prove that her recent hardships have not broken her. She throws herself into her work from dusk to dawn, until her solitary routine is disrupted by the appearance of a mysterious child who shows up at her cabin barefoot and covered in bruises.

The girl calls herself Ursa, and she claims to have been sent from the stars to witness five miracles. With concerns about the child’s home situation, Jo reluctantly agrees to let her stay – just until she learns more about Ursa’s past.

Jo enlists the help of her reclusive neighbor, Gabriel Nash, to solve the mystery of the charming child. But the more time they spend together, the more questions they have. How does a young girl not only read but understand Shakespeare? Why do good things keep happening in her presence? And why aren’t Jo and Gabe checking the missing children’s website anymore?

Though the three have formed an incredible bond, they know difficult choices must be made. As the summer nears an end and Ursa gets closer to her fifth miracle, her dangerous past closes in. When it finally catches up to them, all of their painful secrets will be forced into the open, and their fates will be left to the stars. (Amazon)

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Perfect Child by Lucinda Berry

Perfect Child by Lucinda Berry

Christopher and Hannah are a happily married surgeon and nurse with picture-perfect lives. All that’s missing is a child. When Janie, an abandoned six-year-old, turns up at their hospital, Christopher forms an instant connection with her, and he convinces Hannah they should take her home as their own.

But Janie is no ordinary child, and her damaged psyche proves to be more than her new parents were expecting. Janie is fiercely devoted to Christopher, but she acts out in increasingly disturbing ways, directing all her rage at Hannah. Unable to bond with Janie, Hannah is drowning under the pressure, and Christopher refuses to see Janie’s true nature.

Hannah knows that Janie is manipulating Christopher and isolating him from her, despite Hannah’s attempts to bring them all together. But as Janie’s behavior threatens to tear Christopher and Hannah apart, the truth behind Janie’s past may be enough to push them all over the edge. (Amazon)

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Broken Circle by Enjeela Ahmadi-Miller

Broken Circle by Enjeela Ahmadi-Miller

Before the Soviet invasion of 1980, Enjeela Ahmadi remembers her home – Kabul, Afghanistan – as peaceful, prosperous, and filled with people from all walks of life. But after her mother, unsettled by growing political unrest, leaves for medical treatment in India, the civil war intensifies, changing young Enjeela’s life forever. Amid the rumble of invading Soviet tanks, Enjeela and her family are thrust into chaos and fear when it becomes clear that her mother will not be coming home.

Thus begins an epic, reckless, and terrifying five-year journey of escape for Enjeela, her siblings, and their father to reconnect with her mother. In navigating the dangers ahead of them, and in looking back at the wilderness of her homeland, Enjeela discovers the spiritual and physical strength to find hope in the most desperate of circumstances.

A heart-stopping memoir of a girl shaken by the brutalities of war and empowered by the will to survive, The Broken Circle brilliantly illustrates that family is not defined by the borders of a country but by the bonds of the heart. (Amazon)

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Fever King by Victoria Lee

Fever King by Victoria Lee

In the former United States, sixteen-year-old Noam Álvaro wakes up in a hospital bed, the sole survivor of the viral magic that killed his family and made him a technopath. His ability to control technology attracts the attention of the minister of defense and thrusts him into the magical elite of the nation of Carolinia.

The son of undocumented immigrants, Noam has spent his life fighting for the rights of refugees fleeing magical outbreaks – refugees Carolinia routinely deports with vicious efficiency. Sensing a way to make change, Noam accepts the minister’s offer to teach him the science behind his magic, secretly planning to use it against the government. But then he meets the minister’s son – cruel, dangerous, and achingly beautiful – and the way forward becomes less clear.

Caught between his purpose and his heart, Noam must decide who he can trust and how far he’s willing to go in pursuit of the greater good. (Amazon)

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What the Wind Knows by Amy Harmon

What the Wind Knows by Amy Harmon

Anne Gallagher grew up enchanted by her grandfather’s stories of Ireland. Heartbroken at his death, she travels to his childhood home to spread his ashes. There, overcome with memories of the man she adored and consumed by a history she never knew, she is pulled into another time.

The Ireland of 1921, teetering on the edge of war, is a dangerous place in which to awaken. But there Anne finds herself, hurt, disoriented, and under the care of Dr. Thomas Smith, guardian to a young boy who is oddly familiar. Mistaken for the boy’s long-missing mother, Anne adopts her identity, convinced the woman’s disappearance is connected to her own.

As tensions rise, Thomas joins the struggle for Ireland’s independence and Anne is drawn into the conflict beside him. Caught between history and her heart, she must decide whether she’s willing to let go of the life she knew for a love she never thought she’d find. But in the end, is the choice actually hers to make? (Amazon)

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It's Not Hansel and Gretel by Josh Funk

It’s Not Hansel and Gretel by Josh Funk

Hansel and Gretel will not listen to their storyteller. For one thing, who leaves a trail of bread crumbs lying around, when there are people starving? Not Hansel, that’s for sure! And that sweet old lady who lives in a house made of cookies and candy? There’s no way she’s an evil witch! 

As for Gretel, well, she’s about to set the record straight – after all, who says the story can’t be called Gretel and Hansel? It’s time for these wacky siblings to take their fairy tale into their own hands. So sit back and enjoy the gingerbread!

With laugh-out-loud dialogue and bold, playful art (including hidden search-and-find fairy-tale creatures), this Hansel and Gretel retelling will have kids giggling right up to the delicious ending! (Amazon)

Which one looks good to you? I’m leaning towards What the Wind Knows, as it reminds me a little of Outlander with the whole time travel aspect. Where the Forest Meets the Stars looks good too, but I’m a sucker for time travel!

Read more about the Amazon First Read program and then be sure to sign up today!

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