Friday 27 March 2020

Free Reads for #Covid-19 Isolation

How life can change in less than a month. Here at Hornsea Writers everyone is so far so good, and we hope all our readers are enjoying similar health.

Like other countries in Europe, in the UK we are getting used to life under lockdown: home-schooling, creating new routines, staying two metres apart while outside. But it still means an awful lot of time within our own four walls, and 24-hour television soon palls.

Reading has always been The Great Escape, and Hornsea Writers has some great free reads they want to share. Many people subscribe to Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited and here are a few offerings. Links go to the author’s Amazon page unless stated:


Penny Grubb, winner of a Crime Writers’ Association Dagger, offers two sometimes overlapping series: the DS Martyn Webber Mysteries and the Annie Raymond PI Mysteries, both set firmly in the realities of modern UK policing. The first three Annie Raymond books are available as a trilogy under the title Falling Into Crime.

April Taylor writes Cosy Crime with a touch of acerbic wit in her Georgia Pattison Mysteries. Georgia is an early-music singer, so giving recitals in cathedrals and the mansions of the aristocracy are her bread and butter. Alas, there always seems to be a body involved. For music lovers all the Georgia Pattison books have links to the music mentioned. She has written a somewhat darker, psychic Crime, The Angel Killer, with a lead character who does not embrace his “gift”, plus a Sherlock Holmes pastiche and a collection of short fiction.


Madeleine McDonald writes long and short fiction. Her Enchantment In Morocco is a heart-warming story of East meets West and the constraints and acceptance of traditions and modernity. Enjoy life in a sun-baked village where lemon trees overhang white-washed walls and olive groves offer shade to working donkeys.

Linda Acaster writes mythic fantasy and chillers, but also has two historical romances in Kindle Unlimited. There is the ‘sweet’ Mediaeval Hostage of the Heart set in 1066 on the English-Welsh borderlands, full of intrigue and derring-do, and the ‘sensual’ Native American Beneath The Shining Mountains set in a time when European encroachment was mere rumour.


Shellie Horst was one of the principal movers behind Distaff, an anthology of eclectic stories from women writers. It has been very well received, not least for the cover art which Shellie created. Anthologies and collections are always good for readers short of time, enabling them to dip in and out. Be sure to read My Little Mecha which Shellie wrote, especially if you are currently home-schooling.

The SMASHWORDS Authors Give Back Scheme
It isn't just on Amazon where free reads are available. Smashwords is hosting a collaboration with many of its authors to help readers cope with the Covid-19 isolation.

Stuart Aken has all six of his titles listed on the site downloadable for free until 19th April. Scroll down his Profile page for direct links. There’s a choice of erotic romance, heart-warming romance, speculative fiction, humour, dark crime, and for those with a family member suffering from ME/Chronic Fatigue, his own ten-year experiences complete with helpful information.

All authors have other titles available, on Amazon and other retail sites, for prices as low as 99p/99c, not listed here. Check the links to individual authorpages below the header.

We wish our readers many hours of immersive reading as a much needed diversion from the  sombre reality of current day-to-day life.

Stay safe. Keep your distance from others, and wash your hands. It’s the least we can do to alleviate the pressure on our health services, no matter where in the world we live.

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