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5 Infectious Non-Fiction Reads

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on March 31, 2020

With the engine of the world grinding to a halt in the face of COVID-19, we thought our regularly-scheduled list of recommended books might be a good place to explore some of the most infectiously immersive non-fiction books about plagues, pandemics, and all manner of other biological unpleasantness. While none of those will make you feel comfortable, they’re all valuable reads when it comes to understanding just how devastating infectious diseases can be – and how modern society is often ‘whistling past the graveyard’ in the face of an inevitable infectious apocalypse. And what better time to read about these than when you’re stuck in home quarantine anyway? Viruses, Plagues, and History: Past, Present and Future by Michael B. A. Oldstone AIDS, influenza, polio, and smallpox make up a chilling cast of characters – with the last in that list responsible for 300 million deaths in the 20th century alone. In… Read More >

5 Books for Kids – For Bedtime or Beyond

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on March 10, 2020

When you subscribe to Hidden Gems, you’ll have the opportunity to select from over 15 different genres of books to receive FOR FREE, sent straight to your inbox for you to read and review. This week, we’re looking at some of the top-rated books for kids that have been enjoyed by subscribers – ranked according to their popularity and reviews. When Dinosaurs Go to Bed by Josh Bluman How do dinosaurs go to bed? It’s a legitimate question – and one I bet they never taught you the answer to in school! In this beautifully illustrated children’s classic, author Josh Bluman explores the possibilities – and gives young readers a fun way to learn all the names and attributes of everybody’s favorite retro-reptiles. “Just WOW!” Praises reviewer NabooksSL in a 5-star review. “Any dino-mad kid (or adult) will absolutely LOVE this. The colors are so vivid and cute. I can foresee… Read More >

5 Future Classics for Young Adults

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on February 25, 2020

Each and every month, Hidden Gems subscribers get the opportunity to read and review dozens of new books from over fifteen different genres. As reflected in the publishing industry at large, Young Adult novels continue to be one of the more popular genres; and so we’ve compiled a list of a few of our subscriber favorites from the last few months. The Fae & The Fallen by Brittni Chenelle This book blew me away with its fresh, spicy new take of high school gossip and drama. The tale takes place at the mythical Gifted Fae Academy – a Hogwarts for fairies, I guess – and sees an un-magical girl find herself drawn intoxicatingly toward the most dangerous guy at school… literally.   In her 5-star review, Pinkwitch5 praised the author’s writing: “The author uses a unique way of story telling that had me immediately invested in the welfare of all the characters…. Read More >

5 Magnetic Mysteries for the New Year

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on February 11, 2020

At the end of 2019, Hidden Gems subscribers were treated to a myriad of mysteries to read and review for FREE – and we’ve cross-referenced the ratings and reviews to select five of the most compelling. It’s always tough to pick from all the great reads authors share with us, so if you’re a fan of the mystery genre, don’t hesitate to sign up and enjoy them all! Wings and Broken Things by Trixie Silvertale Trixie Silvertale‘s Mitzy Moon series are a unique blend of paranormal and cozy mysteries – with a frisson of romance thrown in for good measure. In this book, the third in the series, we really see our determined psychic hit her stride as she tries to track down who ran down her beloved veterinarian. “Another wonderful book by this author!” Darla writes, in her 5-star review. “Mitzy has two cases to solve. The local vet… Read More >

Five Favorite Fantasy Novels

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on January 28, 2020

Hidden Gems subscribers were in for a treat over the holidays, as we offered up the chance to read a plethora of fantastic fantasy novels, delivered to their inbox FOR FREE! It was hard to choose from the dozens we sent out over the last few months, but based on reviews and engagement, here are the hottest titles from the last quarter of 2019. A Company of Monsters by Shami Stovall Fellow history major Shami Stovall has already won over fans with her range of alternative history science fiction and fantasy novels, and A Company of Monsters is one that will instantly appeal to anybody who enjoyed Kim Newman’s Anno Dracula. Set in a twisted 1917 – with the Russian Empire on the verge of collapse – this World War I-set tale sees feisty female sorcerer Florence embark on an adventure behind enemy lines in order to prop up the Russian… Read More >

The Hottest Romances of 2019

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on January 14, 2020

Romance is always one of the most popular genres of books for subscribers to Hidden Gems, and 2019 had literally hundreds of romance books offered to our readers. With 2019 wrapped up, we’ve gone through and identified 12 of the hottest romance novels our subscribers enjoyed. Now, there’s a little wiggle room behind the science of how these books were chosen – roughly one per month, based on overall Amazon review score – but I don’t think anybody will deny that they’re some of the best romance books on Amazon; and thanks to the author’s of these books working with us,  all of them were sent to Hidden Gems subscribers for free – sometimes ahead of their publication date! The Road to Solace by Samantha A. Cole  Author Samantha Cole has a legion of fans, but took a different direction with this story; which stands alone from her other popular series…. Read More >

5 Holiday Classics – As You’ve Never Seen Them Before!

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on December 31, 2019

In Iceland, there’s a Christmas Eve tradition called “Jolabokaflod” – in which you’re allowed to unwrap one specific present early; a book which you can then curl with and read on the long, winter’s night. It sounds delightful – and inspired us to look up some unexpected holiday classics that you might like to read to your family in front of a crackling, log fire. For me, the holidays isn’t just about eggnog, presents, and listening to my uncles discuss politics for three hours. It’s also an opportunity to indulge in some classic holiday capers on the small screen – like the best Christmas movie ever made; Die Hard. But unfortunately, Die Hard isn’t exactly the most family-friendly movie to curl up with the kids to watch – and, in fact, many other favorites are a little suspect today. I watched Home Alone with my kids the other day and… Read More >

5 Out-Of-This-World Science Fiction Stories

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on December 17, 2019

Science fiction has always remained a popular genre, although many readers were once reticent to share their passion for out-of-this-world adventures or speculative science fantasy. Today, though, there’s been a resurgence in the genre – driven by comic book adaptations dominating the box office, and sci-fi shows ruling the roost on Netflix, Amazon Prime and Disney+. In fact, there’s never been a better time to let your nerd flag fly; and that’s why we’ve selected some of the best science fiction books to share with you, as recently reviewed by Hidden Gems subscribers. Fight the Good Fight by Daniel Gibbs We chatted to author Daniel Gibbs just a few weeks ago, so it should probably come as no surprise that his Hidden Gems reader reviews would be good enough to earn him a place on our list of best science fiction books. Subscribers have had the opportunity to read and review… Read More >

Women’s Literature Books to Curl Up With This December

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on December 3, 2019

Tis the season for a warm couch and a good book – and we’ve got you covered. In September and October, subscribers to Hidden Gems got the opportunity to read free copies of many books in the Women’s Literature genre, and these were their favorites based on the reviews and engagement the books received. Coming Home by Holly Kerr The first book in the Sisters in a Small Town series, readers of this title were introduced to the larger than life Skatt sisters – five boisterous redheads who fight about everything, but are fiercely loyal to each other. The subject of this book is Brenna – who thought she’d escaped her small-town, Ontario roots for the bright lights of Vancouver; but was brought reluctantly home when her life spectacularly implodes.  In classic Skatt fashion, Brenna wastes no time bringing scandal to her hometown as well – but she’s got competition… Read More >

Ten Tumultuous Romance Novels Loved By Our Subscribers

By: Hidden Gems | Posted on November 19, 2019

The romance genre delivers a constant stream of steamy fiction throughout the year, but this fall Hidden Gems subscribers were treated to a particularly bountiful batch of novels for FREE, to read and review at their leisure. We’ve put together a roundup of 10 of the most loved by our readers, so if you’re looking for a new romance to dig into, this list is a great place to start! Beautifully Broken Spirit by Catherine Cowles One of the best tropes in romance fiction is that of two broken people finding completeness in each other – since it’s an idea that’s so resonant with all of us. In this book, a single mom who looks after stray mustangs has to explore whether or not to pursue a relationship with her best friend – the handsome man who’s been with her through thick and thin, but seems to prefer any other woman… Read More >