Free literary fiction Kindle books for 11 Feb 18

Shady Creek

by Russell Gilwee

SHADY CREEK is a coming of age story wrapped in a dark, atmospheric small town murder mystery.

Ten-year old Delbert and his troubled mother, Lillian, return to the small factory town of Shady Creek tucked in the rugged foothills of the Smoky Mountains in western North Carolina following the death of Delbert’s maternal grandmother.

Shortly thereafter, Delbert meets his father for the first time after his father is released from prison and discovers the unfolding truth behind what really happened in the days just before he was born.

With dark secrets festering beneath the surface like an old wound that promises to never to heal, Delbert’s new life in the small town is quickly and tragically complicated by his father’s release, the town’s long memory, and the subsequent murder of a young local girl on a cold autumn night — the teenage daughter of the only witness to testify against Delbert’s father a decade earlier.

But as the days become increasingly shorter and the nights longer, Delbert comes to the gradual realization not all is what it seems and that only he holds the keys to his father’s absolution.

SHADY CREEK is suspense cooked at a slow-burn — one that leaves us shaken and renewed.


by T.R. Connolly

Juan DeLuna lives under a pier at Boa Viagem beach in Recife, Brazil. He is orphaned at 13. As DeLuna grows, he harbors a haunting secret. A strong young woman tries to help and curb his criminal instincts. Eventually, she must make a decision about her own self-worth. With the Olympics approaching, the orphan has grown his gang of thieves into a large criminal enterprise; he sees the perfect opportunity for expansion.

Penelope Variations

by J.R. Hamilton

The query that failed to attract attention from publishers and agents ran as follows for this sad little book:

Penelope Variations is a 76,000-word short story collection about alcoholism and mental illness. The narrator, Charlie, links the stories, many of which are about botched relationships that serve as points along the map of his dysfunction. The stories take you through his drinking years, and his attempts at sobriety. The book doesn’t tell an entirely hopeful story, with Charlie, in the end, finding sobriety but also a hard-nosed fatalism, where he submits to life even when it seems hopeless.

The book opens with a series of stories told by and about a character named Sweeper, who, we later find out, is Charlie’s creation, and Sweeper’s sensational stories are a means for Charlie to process his psychotic episode. It foretells a situation of loneliness and isolation, as well as the beginning of a struggle to find normalcy. Charlie enters the book as he resurfaces among old friends, who don’t seem to treat him the same or recognize him. He finds comfort and magic in the bottle, as though this were his anodyne. What follows is a series of stories involving failed relationships, beginning with a love of alcohol and ending with a sense of being outside of life, as though just observing while tracing a trajectory that in retrospect seems to have been mapped out before. There is also one section that involves a return to Sweeper, with Charlie telling a somewhat hard-boiled story about finding a connection with this strange character through a narrator digging through fragments of Sweeper’s writing.

I am a retail clerk with the liberal arts major blues. After graduating UMass Boston with a degree in Philosophy and English, after climbing out of my own personal bottle six years ago, I find myself stuck behind a register. However, this has given me time to write some books, with this one being the most complete. Two of the stories have been published in literary journals, one in The Avalon Literary Review, and another in The Rag. I understand that this isn’t a very accomplished resume, and that I am searching blindly for representation. However, I do feel I have something truly worthwhile here, and believe people will sense the realness of these stories, which really run the gamut between classy and filthy, sad and humorous, and tell of the everyday madness and the high drama of mental illness.

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