Bywater Books is pleased to announce our Summer 2018 New Releases, featuring Book #2 of Cheryl A. Head’s Charlie Mack Motown Mystery Series, a new romantic comedy from Ann McMan, and a swashbuckling romantic adventure from debut author, Anna Burke.

Wake Me When It’s Over by Cheryl A. Head

Charlie Mack and her crack team of private investigators have been asked to take on a seemingly impossible task—to identify and thwart an attack on the upcoming Detroit Auto Show. With a $100K incentive and the help of a dozen freelancers, Charlie and her team slowly begin to unravel a twisted plot that runs through several countries and even more bank accounts. But finding out who’s behind the deadly plot only solves half the problem, because Charlie is drawn into an intensive game of cat-and-mouse to locate dozens of hidden bombs before they can be detonated.

“Extremely well written, the story flows along at a reckless pace without ever feeling forced. The characters are well drawn with foibles and flaws, friendships and mock enmities that make them a real team. The plot is complex; the detail and threads convoluted and elaborate, and while they weave together, fading in and out, at no point do you feel that they wont resolve into a comprehensive whole. Very well done and highly recommended.”The Lesbian Reading Room

“Let me start with two facts about me. The first is that I do not remember ever having written a review that I entitled simply “Wow!”. The second is that I am not a mystery reader, so it is therefore safe to assume that there is something special bout Cheryl Head’s Wake Me When It’s Over.”—Reviews by Amos Lassen

Beowulf for Cretins: A Love Story by Ann McMan

English professor and aspiring novelist, Grace Warner spends her days teaching four sections of “Beowulf for Cretins” to bored and disinterested students at one of New England’s “hidden ivy” colleges. Not long after she is dumped by her longtime girlfriend, Grace meets the engaging and mysterious Abbie on a cross-country flight. Sparks fly on and off the plane as the two strangers give in to one night of reckless passion with no strings attached, and no contact information exchanged.

Back home at St. Albans, the college rocks Grace’s world when it announces the appointment of a new president, the first woman in its 165-year history. Cue Abbie—and cue Grace’s collision course with a neurotic dog named Grendel, a fractious rival for tenure, and a woman called Ochre, in what very well might be Grace’s last real shot at happiness.

This full-length novel reimagines and expands on the short story, “Falling From Grace,” which was originally published in the award-winning story collection, Sidecar by Ann McMan.

“Ann McMan has this amazing ability to combine intellectual wordplay with the portrayal of sympathetic characters, charming romances and genuinely wonderful friendships. While our focus must be on the erudite and entertaining main characters and their somewhat tortuous path through the brambles of professional integrity, the ensemble is filled out with absolutely adorable secondary characters and relationships.Is hard to know where to stop with the praise. The writing is immaculate, the use of language and references to the arts and literature make for extremely scholarly characters, well apart from Dean and Grendel, although Grendel has some great lines, and any author who can use “floccinaucinihilipilification“ in a sensible sentence deserves genuine genuflection.”The Lesbian Reading Room

“So here’s the thing, Beowulf for Cretins is possibly one of the best novels I have ever read”— Les Rêveur

Compass Rose by Anna Burke

In the year 2513, the only thing higher than the seas is what’s at stake for those who sail them.

Rose was born facing due north, with an inherent perception of cardinal points flowing through her veins. Her uncanny sense of direction earns her a coveted place among the Archipelago Fleet elite, but it also attracts the attention of Admiral Comita, who sends her on a secret mission deep into pirate territory. Accompanied by a ragtag crew of mercenaries and under the command of Miranda, a captain as alluring as she is bloodthirsty, Rose discovers the hard way that even the best sense of direction won’t be enough to keep her alive if she can’t learn to navigate something far more dangerous than the turbulent seas. Aboard the mercenary ship, Man o’ War, Rose learns quickly that trusting the wrong person can get you killed—and Miranda’s crew have no intention of making things easy for her—especially the Captain’s trusted first mate, Orca, who is as stubborn as she is brutal.

This swashbuckling 26th century romantic adventure is smart, colorful and quirky, yet it manages to deliver a healthy dose of heart, humor, and humility on every single page.

“A sparkling, impossible-to-put-down addition to the lesbian pirate genre, complete with underwater peril, brutal sailors, and a sexy but dangerous pirate named Miranda.” —Catherine Friend, author of A Pirate’s Heart and Spark

Available now from Bywater Books, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and fabulous independent bookstores everywhere.

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