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Provided by the publisher
"Death of a Kingfisher" is by M.C. Beaton.

Here are some fiction books that have crossed our desks recently.

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HARDBACK

"DEATH OF A KINGFISHER: A Hamish Macbeth Mystery," by M.C. Beaton, Grand Central Publishing, $24.99, 245 pages (f)

A little Scottish town tries to launch a plan to bring tourists there. They rename the forest "The Fairy Glenn," but when a kingfisher is found hanging from a branch with a noose around its neck and a wave of vandalism rocks the town, the townspeople turn to Constable Hamish Macbeth to put a stop to it. He realizes this is more than just animal cruelty, but murder.

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More hardback books recently released:

"TRAFFICKED," by Kim Purcell (f): Hannah is a teenager from Moldova and comes to Los Angeles as a nanny for a Russian family, but unbeknownst to her, she has been sold to the family. With false documents, no money and no one to help her, the family takes advantage of the situation and threatens and abuses her into submission while she tries to survive and hopefully find a way out, while fearing for her family back home.

"SONGS OF THE EARTH: The Wild Hunt Book One," by Elspeth Cooper (f): In the Holy City of Dremen, Gair, a young church knight-in-training, is sentenced to death as a witch ­— because he can hear the songs of the earth. After a last-minute reprieve, Gair barely escapes and finds himself under the care of Alderan, an old man who seems to know more than he lets on.

"THE SCAR," by Sergey and Marina Dyachenko (f): Egert, an arrogant member of a group of elite guards, kills a student in a duel and then is shamed by a man known as the Wanderer. Egert sets out to undo the damage through a long and harrowing journey. Originally published in Russian.

"THE FOREST LAIRD: A Tale of William Wallace," by Jack Whyte (f): This first novel in the Guardians Trilogy, which explores the men who helped Scotland achieve freedom, looks at the life of William Wallace, who was set to be executed in 1305.

"LIVING PROOF," by Kira Peikoff (f): A thriller set in 2027 that explores the future of stem cell research through the story of young doctor Arianna Drake. Her small fertility clinic surpasses government requirements, and popularity for her clinic spikes. An undercover agent begins to investigate for illegal activity as a scientific breakthrough hangs in the balance.

"ROBERT LUDLUM's THE JANSON COMMAND," by Paul Garrison (f): In this new series, former government spy and assassin Paul Janson is now an independent contractor with a new mission — to help contribute to the greater good. He's hired to rescue a doctor kidnapped by West African rebels. As he gets deeper into the rescue, he wonders if he's working for the right side.

"THE SHADOW PATROL," by Alex Berenson (f): Ex-CIA agent John Wells is called in to Afghanistan to investigate if an American is leaking secrets to the Taliban in this thriller set two years after Osama bin Laden's death.

"NO MARK UPON HER," by Deborah Crombie (f): An aspiring Olympic rower is found dead after going out to train one evening, and what looks to be an accident quickly turns into a murder investigation that Scotland Yard's Duncan Kincaid leads.

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PAPERBACK

"SIXTY ACRES AND A BRIDE," by Regina Jennings, Bethany House, $14.99, 368 pages (f)

A young Indian widow, Rosa Garner, and her mother-in-law return to their Texas family ranch and the county is demanding back taxes. Others offer what support they can as she tries to navigate the culture and customs of America while trying to avoid eviction. Based loosely on the story of Ruth and Boaz.

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More paperback books recently released:

"BLUE MOON BAY," by Lisa Wingate (f): When Heather Hampton returns to Moses Lake, Texas, to sell the family farmland — and secure a promotion ­­— she finds her family had secrets and unexpected connections, and she needs to find out what is true.

"WHAT HAPPENED TO HANNAH," by Mary Kay McComas (f): Hannah left home as a teenager and never looked back. When her mother and sister pass away, Hannah is named the guardian of her 15-year-old niece and is forced to deal with her past.

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REPRINTS

"LETHAL," by Sandra Brown (f); "SPYCATCHER," by Matthew Dunn (f); "SWEET TALK: Stories, 20th anniversary edition," by Stephanie Vaughn (f)

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