Archive for the ‘Sales’ Category

Monthly Kindle Deals for $3.99 or less each: September 2015

September 2, 2015

Monthly Kindle Deals for $3.99 or less each: September 2015

Amazon does the Kindle Daily Deal (at AmazonSmile…benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*), which discounts (usually) four books a day (often general fiction, a romance, a science fiction/fantasy book, and a kids’ book). However, I have to say…today, it looked different. Then didn’t have each of the deals tiled, as they usually do. They were in a “ribbon” along with other Kindle deals. Amazon is clearly changing things: they just dumped the Free App of the Day in favor of Amazon Underground. The links for offers on my Kindle Fire HDX aren’t going directly to the products. It may just be part of Amazon Phase 2 (as I call it), or it might presage a major announcement along with new hardware, probably this month.

They are stilldoing Monthly Kindle Book Deals for $3.99 or less each) (at AmazonSmile). That’s a rebranding: they used to say it was “100 Books”, but that’s also gotten to be more…there are 299 for this month at the time of writing (eight more than last month…).

Those prices only apply to the USA, and one weird thing is that some of the books seem to sell out at that price sometimes (or become unavailable for some other reason).

It’s also interesting…about 51% of the books in the USA Kindle store are $3.99 or less (1,923,320 of 3,802,069). Still, these are on sale, and that’s worth something. :)

Another thing is that many of these books may be part of

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

Amazon lists that information prominently. If they are, then you need to consider whether it is worth buying them…even at these low prices. While they are in KU, you can, if you are a subscriber (and there’s a free month available right now), read them at no additional cost. There are, of course, advantages to owning books, especially if you want to re-read them. A book could move out of KU at any time. Even if you think you want to own it, if you are a KU member, you could always read it first to make sure. ;) I will mark them with KU.

Oh, interesting! I see they are now also clearly marking when a book is available through the KOLL (Kindle Owners’ Lending Library)! That’s nice…there was a period of time when it was quite hard to tell. Eligible Prime members can borrow one per calendar month. If you are both a Prime member and a Kindle Unlimited subscriber (like me), I think you are more likely to get them through KU (where you can have up to ten at a time out, with no limit per month), but I’m sure I have many readers who are Prime members and don’t subscribe to KU. I’ll mark those with KOLL.

I’m going to list some of the $3.99 or lower ones that caught my eye…I’m not necessarily recommending them, but I do think they are interesting.

The ones I link (if I actually link to specific books) also don’t block text-to-speech access**…but I think blocking it is becoming rarer.

  • Kiss and Tell by Fern Michaels (and other Sisterhood Fern Michaels books)
  • The Field of Blackbirds by Thomas Ryan
  • Deserves to Die by Lisa Jackson (and other Lisa Jackson books)
  • My Sister’s Grave by Robert Dugoni
  • Dust by Hugh Howey
  • Childhood’s End by Arthur C. Clarke (and 2010, Rama II, The Garden of Rama, 2061, 3001)
  • The Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett (Discworld)
  • Highland Surrender by Tracy Brogan
  • The Motivation Manifesto by Brendon Burchard
  • What if Everybody Did That? by Ellen Javernick, Colleen M. Madden
  • Play Dirty by Sandra Brown
  • At least some Beatrix Rose novels by Mark Dawson
  • At least some Eve Duncan novels by Iris Johansen
  • Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith (kicked off the classic/horror mash-up genre, soon to be a major motion picture) $3.49
  • If Tomorrow Comes by Sidney Sheldon
  • This Book Is Full of Spiders by David Wong
  • The Paradox of Choice by Barry Schwartz
  • Winter Wind by J.R. Rain (and other J.R. Rain novels)
  • Missy’s Murder by Karen Kingsbury
  • The Einstein Pursuit by Chriz Kuzneski
  • The  Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick (has had  an Oscar honored movie)
  • We All Fall Down by Simon Wood
  • The Day of the Triffids by John Wyndham (a classic of science fiction)
  • The Gathering Storm by Winston Churchill
  • Easily Amused by Karen McQuestion
  • Pecan Pie and Deadly Lies by Nancy Naigle (and lots of other Naigle books)
  • Stinger by Robert R. McCammon
  • Avatar: The Last Airbender – The Search Part 1 by Gene Luen Yang, Gurihiru (a popular TV series..could be a way to get a child reading more
  • Bloodchild: And Other Stories by Octavia E. Butler
  • Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion (already a movie)
  • At least some of The End series by Tim LaHaye, Craig Parshall
  • I, Zombie by Hugh Howey
  • The Doctor Is In: Dr. Ruth on Love, and Joie de Vivre
  • Golf in the Kingdom by Michael Murphy
  • At least some books in The Mongoliad series (authors include Greg Bear and Neal Stephenson)
  • The Boys of ’67 by Andrew Wiest
  • Silent Night by Mary Higgins Clark
  • True Detective by Max Allan Collins (and many other Collins books)
  • Periodic Tales by Hugh Aldersey-Williams
  • The Reckoning by David Halberstam
  • The Brimstone Wedding by Ruth Rendell
  • The Ground Beneath Her Feet by Salman Rushdie

This is probably the best Kindle Monthly Deals ever! Many of these are highly rated, and I was familiar with what seemed like a much higher percentage of them than was typical. :) It’s definitely worth looking at the list: I’d be surprised if you couldn’t find a gift for somebody here (e-books from the Kindle store can be delayed until the appropriate gift giving occasion).

If there were others you’d like to mention for me and my readers, please comment on this post.

Prime members, don’t forget to pick up your

Kindle First books (at AmazonSmile*)

You can get one of the six (same as last month…previously, it had been four) books to own (not borrow) for free…these are books which will be actually released next month. The choices this month are:

  • The Prettiest One by James Hankins (Thriller)
  • Pale Queen Rising #1 by A.R. Kahle (Fantasy)
  • Still Waters by Viveca Sten, Marlaine Delargy (Mystery)
  • Kissing M. Right by Michelle Major (Romance)
  • The Capital of Latecomers by Nina Nenova, Vladimir Poleganov (Modern Fiction)
  • Hot Sur by Laura Restrepo, Ernesto Mestre-Reed (Literary Suspense)

People like to know which one I pick…I’m going with The Capital of Latecomers. This is a science fiction novel, translated from the Bulgarian. It sounds intriguing! It’s set in the modern world, by the way, so if you are resistant to things that are too “unrealistic”, that might not be a barrier. “Eastern Europe” has some fascinating science fiction/fantasy, and the feel is often quite different what may be more familiar “space opera” or military science fiction. That’s not to say that a Bulgarian author will write like the Czech author Karel Čapek, the Russian author Alexander Volkov, or the Polish author Stanislaw Lem…but there is some shared market there.

Enjoy!

 Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

** A Kindle with text-to-speech can read any text downloaded to it…unless that access is blocked by the publisher inserting code into the file to prevent it. That’s why you can have the device read personal documents to you (I’ve done that). I believe that this sort of access blocking disproportionately disadvantages the disabled, although I also believe it is legal (provided that there is at least one accessible version of each e-book available, however, that one can require a certification of disability). For that reason, I don’t deliberately link to books which block TTS access here (although it may happen accidentally, particularly if the access is blocked after I’ve linked it). I do believe this is a personal decision, and there  are legitimate arguments for purchasing those books. 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

My favorite Kindle sale: hundreds of books for students up to 90% off each

August 31, 2015

My favorite Kindle sale: hundreds of books for students up to 90% off each

Amazon has lots of ways to save us money on ebooks…I even listed

10 ways Amazon saves us money on e-books

back in 2013.

One of my favorites, though, is one they do from time to time…huge savings on books putatively for students, but there is likely to be something there just about anybody would want (student or not)

It’s today’s

Kindle Daily Deal (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

That means that these are special prices for today (expect these books to cost more tomorrow)…and they may not apply in your country. As always, check the price before you click or tap that Buy button.

Also, this is a great opportunity to buy gifts! You can buy them now at these prices, and delay delivery until the appropriate gift giving occasion. E-books can be terrific small gifts…and big ones too, of course. :)

If you average five seconds per book (for some, you’ll skim over it…for others, you might look much more than five seconds making a decision), it would take you close to twenty minutes to look at this list. I’ll do it for you. ;)

Just kidding: I’m not going to list every book here, just the ones that caught my eye. I will go through the list myself…that’s going to be more for gifts than for me. As a happy

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I’m less inclined to make an impulse buy of a book than I was in the past. I always have things I really want to read.

However, while you can gift Kindle Unlimited memberships, you obviously can’t gift books you borrow from KU (you borrow them, you don’t own them).

Here we go:

  • Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor E. Frankl
  • 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey (also KU)
  • Lies My Teacher Told Me:Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong by James W. Loewen
  • On Writing Well (30th Anniversary Edition) by William Zinsser
  • Brain Rules by John Medina
  • Statistics Done Wrong: The Woefully Complete Guide by Alex Reinhart
  • Ignorance: How It Drives Science by Stuart Firestein
  • Genome: The Autobiography of a Species in 23 Chapters
  • Cybersecurity and Cyberwar by P. W. Singer and Allan Friedman
  • Stay the Rising Sun by Phil Keith
  • Hacking: The Art of Exploitation by Jon Erickson
  • Lean UX by John Gothell and Josh Seiden
  • Why Geography Matters More Than Ever by Harm de Blij
  • Knowing Your Value: Women, Money and Getting What You’re Worth by Mika Brzesinski
  • American History by Paul S. Boyer
  • Be a People Person by John C. Maxwell
  • The Hot Sea: The Startup CEO Guidebook by Dan Shapiro
  • Dealing with People You Can’t Stand by Dr. Rick Brinkman and Dr. Rick Kirschner
  • Emotional Vampires by Albert Bernstein
  • Point Made: How to Write Like the Nation’s Top Advocates by Ross Guberman
  • The Ultimate French Review and Practice by David Stillman
  • Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature is Almost Certainly False by Thomas Nagel
  • Dog Whistle Politics: How Coded Racial Appeals Have Reinvented Racism and Wrecked the Middle Class by Ian Haney Lopez
  • The History of Jazz by Ted Gioia
  • APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur – How to Publish a Book by Guy Kawasaki and Shawn Welch (KU)
  • Cuba: What Everyone Needs to Know by Julia E. Sweig
  • Perfect Phrases for Conflict Resolution by Lawrence Polsky and Antoine Gerschel
  • Saigon Has Fallen by Peter Arnett (KU)
  • Thirteen: The Apollo Flight That Failed by Henry F.S. Cooper (KU)
  • Korean for Beginners by Henry J. Amen IV and Kyubong Park
  • Austerity: The History of a Dangerous Idea by Mark Blyth
  • The Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkum
  • The 1910 Slocum Massacre by E.R. Billis
  • If the Universe is Teeming with Aliens…Where is Everybody? by Stephen Webb
  • Beyond Talent: Creating a Successful Career in Music by Angela Myles Beeching
  • The Culture of Connectivity: A Critical History of Social Media by Jose Van Dijck
  • The Language hoax: Why the World Looks the Same in Any Language by John H. McWhorter
  • Mad Madame Lalaurie by Victoria Cosne Love and  Loelei Shannon
  • Think Better by Tim Hurson
  • Think: Why You Should Question Everything by Guy P. Harrison
  • Merriam-Webster’s Advanced Learner’s Dictionary
  • Grammar Girl’s 101 Words to Sound Smart by Mignon Fogarty
  • The Plot Thickens: 8 Way to Bring Fiction to Life by Noah Lukeman
  • Turing: Pioneer of the Information Age by B. Jack Copeland
  • Vanishing Seattle by Clark Humphrey
  • They Say in Harlan County by Harlan Portelli
  • Los Angeles Television by Joel Tator
  • First Ladies: From Martha Washington to Michelle Obama by Betty Caroli
  • The 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair by Bill Cotter and Bill Young
  • What to If a Bird Flies in the House and 72 Other Things You Ought to Know by Now by Elizabeth Nix and Elizabeth Hurchalla

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

225 Kindle books for $1.99 or less each, through September 20th

August 26, 2015

225 Kindle books for $1.99 or less each, through September 20th

It’s hard to keep up with all of the Amazon sales!

How about this one?

225 Kindle books for $1.99 or less each (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

Now, these aren’t what I call “People Magazine” books…they aren’t current frontlist titles from traditional publishers.

Still, there are some good books in this group.

I’ll list a few that caught my eye:

  • The Brainrush series by Richard Bard (3 books, $1.99 each). The first book in the series has 4.3 stars out of 5 with 1,434 customer reviews.  They are also all available to read at no additional cost through Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) (as are 203 of the books in this sale)
  • The Immortalist by Kyle Mills
  • Killer’s Payoff (87th Precinct Mysteries) by Ed McBain (hugely popular lengthy series, now published in e-book by Amazon) (they also have some of McBain’s Matthew Hope books)
  • Why Have Kids?: A New Mom Explores the Truth About Parenting and Happiness by Jessica Valenti
  • Gulliver Takes Manhattan by Justin Luke Zirilli
  • The Salt Maiden by Colleen Thompson
  • The Saint versus Scotland Yard (The Saint Series) by Leslie Charteris
  • Next Year I’ll be Perfect by Laura Kilmartin
  • Happy Stories!: Real-Life Inspirational Stories from Around the World That Will Raise Your Happiness Level by Will Bowen
  • Maker Dad: Lunch Box Guitars, Antigravity Jars, and 22 Other Incredibly Cool Father-Daughter DIY Projects by Mark Frauenfelder
  • Veronica Mars – the TV series: Venus and Mars (Kindle Worlds) by MLP (and some other Kindle Worlds book)
  • Make Art Make Money: Lessons from Jim Henson on Fueling Your Creative Career by Elizabeth Hyde Stevens
  • Alfred Hitchcock: The Man Who Knew Too Much (Icons)Mar 24, 2015 | Kindle eBook
    by Michael Wood
  • Dorn of the Mountains by Zane Grey (one of the most popular writers of all time…known for Westerns like this)

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

 

New York Times describes Amazon as a “Bruising Workplace”; Bezos responds

August 18, 2015

New York Times describes Amazon as a “Bruising Workplace”; Bezos responds

A couple of my readers called my attention to this

New York Times article by Jodi Kantor and David Streitfeld

I had seen that it existed but it’s quite lengthy, and it took me until today to read it all.

In the meantime, I had even seen it referenced in the “news crawl” on a 24 hour news channel.

The article is entitled “Inside Amazon: Wrestling Big Ideas in a Bruising Workplace”.

Amazon has faced accusations of being an unsafe workplace (in particular, heat issues in warehouses), but this doesn’t claim that Amazon is doing anything illegal (at least not directly: they reference the heat issue, but didn’t investigate it).

It does claim that the company is…unempathetic. It says, essentially, that coworkers can criticize their teammates…without being identified to the accused.

It describes what could be interpreted as a harmfully competitive environment.

Jeff Bezos has responded, as referenced in this

CNN Money article by David Goldman

and other places, including this

GeekWire article by John Cook

which reproduces Bezos’ memo.

Having read both, I have a few takeaways:

  • Based on the articles, Amazon isn’t doing things that are illegal
  • It’s hard to work at Amazon…definitely challenging
  • It’s possible that some managers at Amazon have treated some  employees without compassion
  • If that is the case, it troubles me that Jeff Bezos says that isn’t the Amazon that Bezos know. If it as indicated (the NYT claims to have spoken with 100 employees and ex-employees), it would trouble me that Bezos woudn’t  know
  • Some of the good things which have come out of Amazon have happened because of their unconventional policies
  • Update: looking at more responses, I also want to say that part of the reaction to this might be people assuming that what is reported is specific to Amazon, when it might be much wider spread. It may be seen as unique to Amazon, when it could actually be a broad indictment of not uncommon corporate behavior. That’s not to say that Amazon doesn’t do some things differently…it does. However, it may be that it just does some things more effectively than some others. Many companies would like to cull their lowest performers every year…Amazon might just be better at it
  • Update: the biggest concern for many people here will be the stories of unempathetic treatment…that after someone has had a family tragedy, they are punished for lowered performance during that period. I can tell you that that is not the case where I work: I’ve coworkers out for long periods due to personal challenges, and be supported and welcomed back by management. Again, though, it’s not illegal (and it may not be  unusual) to judge someone’s performance regardless of extenuating circumstances, as long as the law if followed in terms of family leave and such. In my opinion, not illegal…but not necessarily wise, either

I’ve been a successful manager, and I would not lead my team using the techniques alleged. It was always a big thing to me (and still is) that the team works together.

I don’t like competition within the team…I think it is counter productive.

Let me give you an example.

I was managing trainers, who are naturally inclined to want to help other people (it’s what we do for a living).

We had evaluations from students.

When I became manager, there had been a bonus for the person with the highest evaluation average.

That seemed like a bad thing to me.

To have the highest average doesn’t mean that you have to improve what you are doing. If you could make everyone else do worse, that would be enough.

Again, trainers wouldn’t do that consciously: but would they work after hours to help someone else improve their scores? It would be hard to justify taking the time away from their families, if it could also cost those families money.

I proposed a change, which was accepted…and seemed to really help.

We changed it to say that if the team reached an overall average goal, we randomly selected someone who had made a minimum score to receive the bonus.

You couldn’t get the bonus twice, until everybody on the team had won it once.

In other words, you needed to  make sure everybody on the team did well to have a chance at a bonus. If they did, you would eventually get a bonus…even if your score wasn’t the highest that week.

Every Microsoft certified training center in the USA (might have been North America) had to use the same evaluation system with Microsoft…I think it was thousands of teams.

We were sometimes #1, usually top ten.

That thinking was alien to the sales manager…sales teams usually rely on competition. I greatly credit that sales manager for recognizing the value of my suggestion for my team.

What is alleged (not proven…but my guess is that the article’s authors are reporting accurately what they had heard) isn’t what I would want in my company, and isn’t what has worked for me. My guess is that it would produce some  good results…and suppress others.  I don’t think it would be illegal…just, for me, ill advised.

My intuition is that Jeff Bezos wouldn’t have known about it…that it would have been something that developed in a loosely supervised, decentralized company, where the people in Seattle might not have a firm hand on the corporate culture in New York, for example.

If that’s the case, and this is all speculation, I think it could be fixed.

None of this makes me any less likely to shop at Amazon. It would be different if what was alleged was illegal.

The presentation in the article is more of people being jerks than being crooks.

I think the article is significant enough  to have an impact…and that’s a good thing.

What do you think?  Do you believe the article? If so, does it change how you feel about being an Amazon customer? Is competition necessary within a team? Feel free to tell me and my readers what you think by commenting on this post.

Bonus deal: this may be too late for some of you, but two of Amazon’s Fire tablets are $30 off today only:

Update: thanks to two of my regular readers (Harold Delk and Edward Boyhan) and commenters for catching me on a substitution error. I have corrected that error (I had attributed something the NYT did do another (main)streamer…and the two are quite different), which has improved this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Over $90 in paid apps & games free (limited time)

August 15, 2015

Over $90 in paid apps & games free (limited time)

This offer ends at 11:59 PM on Saturday (August 14th…either tomorrow or today, most likely, when you see this).

It’s any of 40 apps and games, which normally cost you something (values up to $9.99, although many are $0.99) for free.

Over $90 in Paid Apps & Games Free (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I would say the standout for me is

Goat Simulator (at AmazonSmile*)

Yes, that’s right…you are a goat!

I first encountered this app in YouTube videos…and it’s definitely goofy to watch.

That’s one reason why I’m happy this is available for our

Amazon Fire TV (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I think it’s going to be a great thing in groups…maybe especially with kids, although I haven’t seen enough of it to be sure about the appropriateness. It is rated for “all ages”  though, so it’s probably okay.

Cubistry is also part of this group: 4.4 stars (out of 5) with 1,674 customer reviews!

Another very popular game in this batch: Bloons TD 5, with 2,075 reviews and 4.4 stars.

Other titles include:

  • Docs to Go Premium Key
  • Toca Kitchen 2
  • Distant Suns
  • Songsterr Guitar Tabs & Keys
  • Sleepy Time
  • Bridge Constructor Playground
  • C25K Pro (this is a good wellness program: I know of several people who have used it. It stands for “Couch to 5K”…at least, I think this is the one they’ve used)
  • King of Math
  • Handy Photo
  • AVG AntiVirus PRO Android Security
  • 150 Flavorful Cupcake Recipes
  • Toca Nature
  • Fruit Ninja (5th anniversary)
  • XnRetro Pro
  • PrintHand Mobile Print Premium
  • Daily Ab Workout
  • Tiny Scan Pro: PDF Document Scanner
  • Bridge Constructor Medieval
  • Elements of Photography Pro
  • Photo Lab 2
  • Sonic the Hedgehog 2
  • Doodle Creatures
  • Synchronize Ultimate Pro
  • Call of Atlantis (Premium)
  • Atomus HD
  • Trainyard
  • Ice Rage: Hockey
  • Nyan Cat: Lost in Space
  • Bunker Constructor
  • Montezuma Puzzle 3
  • Slydris
  • Scribblenauts Remix
  • Ultimate Hangman HD
  • Lyne
  • Blox
  • Mind Games Pro
  • Sudoku 4ever Plus

Enjoy!

Also,  two new articles on the Amazon Echo (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*) in my The Measured Circle blog:

Alexa Skills come to the Echo, plus more home automation

Can the Amazon Echo’s Alexa avoid controversy?

Finally, as you know, I like to give you a book piece when I do an apps story…I’ll highlight some recent price drops from

eReaderIQ

Note: the prices can go back up at any time, and they may not apply in your country (I have readers around the world). Check the price before you click or tap that Buy button.

  • Are You There, God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume | 4.6 stars | 851 reviews | $3.43
  • Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan | 4.6 stars | 163 reviews | $4.90
  • Giotto and His Publics by Julian Gardner | $21.49
  • Science and Football IV by Aron Murphy | 5.0 stars  | 1 reviews | $52.20
  • Cat Body, Cat Mind by Dr. Michael W. Fox | 3.7 stars | 10 reviews | $11.99
  • Childhood’s End by Arthur C. Clarke | 4.3 stars | 855 reviews | $4.93

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

$20 off Mindle Touch and Kindle for Kids bundle: back to school deals

August 11, 2015

$20 off Mindle Touch and Kindle for Kids bundle: back to school deals

There are public schools in the USA that start in August (many Utah schools, for example), so this actually seems like appropriate timing. :)

As the former manager of a brick-and-mortar bookstore, I understand these “time themed” sales…and they are often very effective.

For many people, it feels like buying a book is not the default, as it is with some “serious readers”. ;) For some of us, we look for a reason not to buy a book. For most people, they need a motivation to move to that “buy” position: time themes are a good reason for those folks.

Back to school is one: clearly, you are going to spend money when the kids start back to school, and that feels justified. In some ways, it’s an investment. We’ve seen the evidence that reading is actually associated with positive brain changes in children. Giving your child a better life clearly motivates many guardians…and then, of course, there are those who want their kids to take care of them in their dotage. ;)

Amazon has two deals right now on Kindle EBRs (E-Book Readers)…and they are both $20 off:

This is definitely, as I described it when it was on sale for this price in March, a serviceable device. It’s lit the same way as a p-book (paperbook): that is, it has no built-in light, and you would use a lamp to read it in an otherwise dark room.

What would you be “missing out on” if you bought this one rather than the next one up?

Well, the most obvious difference with the

All-New Kindle Paperwhite, 6″ High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Built-in Light, Wi-Fi – Includes Special Offers (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

is that it has a built-in “frontlight”, which makes it the most comfortable reading experience I’ve had…including paper.

It has the same basic screen technology as the “Mindle Touch”, but includes a light pointed at the screen (not at your eyes, like a backlit tablet/laptop/SmartPhone).

However, right now, you’d pay $60 more to have that frontlight…$119.

That might not be what you want to do all the time…you may just want something on which to read at the best price.

If you don’t do this one, when might we see a discount again?

Here are some possibilities:

  • When new models are announced (probably September)
  • Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) and other holiday sales)
  • Returns/gift card week (December 26th through January 2nd)
  • Valentine’s Day (February 14th)
  • Mothers’ Day (May)
  • Grads and Dads (June)
  • Prime Day (July 15th…I’m assuming that will become an annual thing)

I think they’ll keep this sale going at least through today, and perhaps for a few days…

Enjoy!

 

 

Today’s KDD: another Kindle Daily Mega-Deal…$1.99 each for top-rated books

August 9, 2015

Today’s KDD: another Kindle Daily Mega-Deal…$1.99 each for top-rated books

Part of my morning routine is to look at the

Kindle Daily Deal (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

It’s one of many ways that Amazon saves us money on e-books (I listed 10 ways Amazon saves us money on e-books a couple of years ago).

I do that in the Maxthon browser (my preferred browser) on my

Kindle Fire HDX (at AmazonSmile)

As a

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

member, it’s quite unlikely that I’ll buy one when I see it…even at $1.99 or a huge discount (or both).

Why do I look?

Part of it is for you. I want to alert you to great deals…I think it’s one of the things I can do with this blog that helps people.

The other thing is for gifts…both for me to give a gift to someone else (you can delay delivery until the appropriate occasion) and for me (by adding books to Amazon Wish List so friends and family can get the oy of buying me books). :)

When I see that there are several books at the top instead of just one, that’s exciting! It sometimes indicate a broad range sale of fifty or so titles.

That was the case recently with books by guests of The Daily Show…and it’s true today for “Top-Rated Reads: Novels, Nonfiction, and More”.

My guess is that the TDS thing was sort of spur of the moment, and this one was already planned.

I’m impressed with today’s list! Titles (and there are 73) include:

  • Ask the Dust by John Fante
  • The Son by Phillipp Meyer
  • I Never Had It Made: An Autobiography of Jackie Robinson
  • Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes (yes, you can get free versions…this is the Edith Grossman translation)
  • The Crusades by Thomas Asbridge
  • Mossad by Michael Bar-Zohar
  • Ten Thousand Saints by Eleanor Henderson
  • Clara’s War by Clara Kramer
  • What Do Women Want? by Daniel Bergner
  • Lost Memory of Skin by Russell Banks
  • My Year with Eleanor by Noelle Hancock
  • Thy Neighbor’s Wife by Gay Talese
  • I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead by Crystal Zevon (about Warren Zevon)
  • Higgs Discovery by Lisa Randall
  • John Lennon by Philip Norman
  • Missing Mom by Joyce Carol Oates
  • The Man in the White Sharkskin Suit by Lucette Lagnado
  • Being Wrong by Kathryn Schultz
  • A Widow’s Story by Joyce Carol Oates
  • Brotherhood of Warriors by Aaron Cohen
  • Little Bird of Heaven by Joyce Carol Oates
  • The Septembers of Shiraz by Dalia Sofar
  • Cyber War by Richard A. Clarke
  • The Falls by Joyce Carol Oates
  • Unless by Carol Shields
  • Tubes by Andrew Blum
  • The Arrogant Years by Lucette Lagnado
  • Knocking on Heaven’s Door by Lisa Randall
  • Together Tea by Marjan Kamali
  • Restoration by Olaf Olafsson
  • Who’s in Charge? by Michael Gazzaniga
  • I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen by Sylvie Simmons
  • The Gravedigger’s Daughter by Joyce Carol Oates
  • Mind of the Raven by Bernd Heinrich
  • The Story of the Jews by Simo Schama
  • Londoners by Craig Taylor
  • Mick Jagger by Philip Noman
  • The Astor Orphan by Alexandra Aldrich
  • The Basic Eight by Daniel Handler
  • Fire Season by Philip Connors
  • Kind of Kin by Rilla Askew
  • Molto Gusto by Mario Batali
  • Keep the Change by Stev Dublanica
  • A Ship Made of Paper by Scott Spencer
  • An Appetite for Wonder by Richard Dawkins
  • Making Toast by Roger Rosenblatt
  • Terror in the Name of God by Jessica Stern
  • The House on First Street by Julia Reed
  • Ted Williams, My Father by Claudia Williams
  • The Last Night of the Yankee Dynasty by Buster Olney
  • Alone Together: My Life with J. Paul Gety by Theodora Getty Gastn
  • Winter World by Bernd Heinrich
  • Dust to Dust by Benjamin Busch
  • Dinner by Jenny Rosenstrach
  • House Rules by Rachel Sontag
  • Why We Run  by Bernd Heinrich
  • Auschwitz: A History by Sybille Steinbacher
  • The Road to Woodstock by Michael Lang
  • Letters to Jackie by Ellen Fitzpatrick
  • Man in the Woods by Scott Spencer
  • Unbelievable by Stacy Horn
  • Denial by Jessica Stern
  • The American Future by Simon Schama
  • Middle Age: A Romance by Joyce Carol Oates
  • An Eagle Named Freedom by Jeff Guidry
  • Red to Black by Alex Dryden

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Monthly Kindle Deals for $3.99 or less each: August 2015

August 2, 2015

Monthly Kindle Deals for $3.99 or less each: August 2015

Amazon does the Kindle Daily Deal (at AmazonSmile…benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*), which discounts (usually) four books a day (often general fiction, a romance, a science fiction/fantasy book, and a kids’ book).

They’ve also been doing Monthly Kindle Book Deals for $3.99 or less each) (at AmazonSmile). That’s a rebranding: they used to say it was “100 Books”, but that’s also gotten to be more…there are 291 for this month at the time of writing (fifteen fewer than last month…).

Those prices only apply to the USA, and one weird thing is that some of the books seem to sell out at that price sometimes (or become unavailable for some other reason).

It’s also interesting…about 50% of the books in the USA Kindle store are $3.99 or less (1,869,098 of 3,715,922). Still, these are on sale, and that’s worth something. :)

Another thing is that many of these books may be part of

Kindle Unlimited (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

Amazon lists that information prominently. If they are, then you need to consider whether it is worth buying them…even at these low prices. While they are in KU, you can, if you are a subscriber (and there’s a free month available right now), read them at no additional cost. There are, of course, advantages to owning books, especially if you want to re-read them. A book could move out of KU at any time. Even if you think you want to own it, if you are a KU member, you could always read it first to make sure. ;) I will mark them with KU.

Oh, interesting! I see they are now also clearly marking when a book is available through the KOLL (Kindle Owners’ Lending Library)! That’s nice…there was a period of time when it was quite hard to tell. Eligible Prime members can borrow one per calendar month. If you are both a Prime member and a Kindle Unlimited subscriber (like me), I think you are more likely to get them through KU (where you can have up to ten at a time out, with no limit per month), but I’m sure I have many readers who are Prime members and don’t subscribe to KU. I’ll mark those with KOLL.

I’m going to list some of the $3.99 or lower ones that caught my eye…I’m not necessarily recommending them, but I do think they are interesting.

The ones I link (if I actually link to specific books) also don’t block text-to-speech access**…but I think blocking it is becoming rarer.

  • 2001: A Space Odyssey by Arthur C. Clarke: 4.5 stars | 604 reviews (KU)
  • State of Fear by Michael Crichton: 3.4 stars out of 5 | 1,592 customer reviews
  • Murder 101: A Decker/Lazarus Novel (Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Series Book 22) by Faye Kellerman: 4.0 stars | 640 reviews
  • Truckers (Bromeliad Trilogy Book 1) by Terry Pratchett: 4.6 stars | 53 reviews
  • Shadow Divers: The True Adventure of Two Americans Who Risked Everything to Solve One of the Last Mysteries of World  War II by Robert Kurson: 4.7 stars | 733 reviews
  • Taken by Tuesday (Weekday Brides Series, Book 5) by Catherine Bybee: 4.6 stars | 557 reviews (KU)
  • Accused: A Rosato & DiNunzio Novel (Rosato & Associates Book 12) by Lisa Scottoline: 4.2 stars | 384 reviews
  • Deadly Decisions: A Novel (Temperance Brennan Book 3) by Kathy Reichs: 3.9 stars | 237 reviews
  • Heal Your Body by Louise Hay: 4.5 stars | 756 reviews
  • Agenda 21: Into the Shadows (Agenda 21 Series) by Glenn Beck: 4.7 stars | 295 reviews
  • Classic Goosebumps #1: Night of the Living Dummy by R.L. Stine: 4.6 stars | 107 reviews
  • Proficient Motorcycling: The Ultimate Guide to Riding Well by David L. Hough: 4.6 stars | 334 reviews
  • Foundation: The History of England from Its Earliest Beginnings to the Tudors by Peter Ackroyd: 4.2 stars | 155 reviews
  • The Ruby Brooch (Time Travel Romance) (The Celtic Brooch Series Book 1) by Katherine Lowry Logan: 4.4  stars | 532 reviews (KU)
  • Sweet Liar (The Montgomery/Taggert Family Book 6) by Jude Deveraux: 4.3 stars | 332 reviews
  • Warriors: Dawn of the Clans #1: The Sun Trail by Erin Hunter and Wayne McLoughlin: 4.8 stars | 442 reviews
  • The Whistling Season by Ivan Doig: 4.4  stars | 401 reviews (KU)
  • The Zombie Survival Guide: Complete Protection from the Living Dead by Max Brooks: 4.4 stars | 1,472 reviews
  • The Burning Wire: A Lincoln Rhyme Novel by Jeffery Deaver: 4.1 stars | 226 reviews
  • The Carrie Diaries by Candace Bushnell: 3.9 stars  | 292 reviews
  • The Detachment (John Rain) by Barry Eisler: 4.2 stars | 762 reviews (KU)
  • Harvest Home by Thomas Tryon (author of The Other): 4.3 stars | 195 reviews (KU)
  • The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark: 3.9 stars | 150 reviews (KU)
  • The Long Way Home by Karen McQuestion: 4.2 stars | 1,012 reviews (KU)
  • The Accursed by Joyce Carol Oates: 3.1 stars | 289 reviews
  • The Anodyne Necklace (Richard Jury Mysteries Book 3) by Martha Grimes: 4.3 stars | 54 reviews
  • Captain Underpants and the Invasion of the Incredibly Naughty Cafeteria Ladies from Outer Space by Dav Pilkey: 4.7 stars | 136 reviews
  • Grub Line Rider by Louis L’Amour: 4.3 stars | 136 reviews (KU)
  • The Pusher (87th Precinct Mysteries) by Ed McBain: 4.0 stars | 61 reviews (KU)
  • The Urantia Book: Revealing the Mysteries of God, the Universe, World History, Jesus, and Ourselves by Urantia Foundation: 4.4 star | 456 reviews
  • Mother of God: An Extraordinary Journey into the Uncharted Tributaries of the Western Amazon by Paul Rosolie: 4.6 stars | 113 reviews
  • Enter the Saint (The Saint Series) by Leslie Charteris: 3.9 stars | 77 reviews (the movie and TV series of  The Saint recently came up in comments on this blog)
  • Chinese and English Nursery Rhymes: Share and Sing in Two Languages [Downloadable Audio Included] by Faye-Lynn Wu and Kieren Dutcher: 4.2 stars | 53 reviews
  • The Worst-Case Scenario Ultimate Adventure Novel by David Borgenicht and Hena Khan: 4.5 stars | 38 reviews (KU)

I think there  are some great choices here! I’ve also added a few things to my KU Wish List. :)

If there were others you’d like to mention for me and my readers, please comment on this post.

Prime members, don’t forget to pick up your

Kindle First books (at AmazonSmile*)

You can get one of the six (it’s only been four before) books to own (not borrow) for free…these are books which will be actually released next month. The choices this month are:

  • The Girl from Krakow by Alex Rosenberg (historical fiction)
  • The Good Neighbor by A.J. Banner (psychological suspense)
  • About That Fling by Tawna Fenske (romance)
  • City of Echoes (Detective Matt Jones Book 1) by Robert Ellis (mystery)
  • Young Babylon by Lu Nei, Poppy Toland (modern fiction)
  • The Hundred-Year Flood by Matthew Salesses (literary fiction)

People like to know which one I pick…I’m going with The Hundred-Year Flood. When science fiction and fantasy tend to draw my eye first, literary fiction always gets a serious consideration from me. I do look at the customer reviews, and if the only thing presented as a negative is something I think I would actually find appealing, which is the case here, that’s actually a big selling point for me. :)

Enjoy!

 Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) By the way, it’s been interesting lately to see Amazon remind me to “start at AmazonSmile” if I check a link on the original Amazon site. I do buy from AmazonSmile, but I have a lot of stored links I use to check for things.

** A Kindle with text-to-speech can read any text downloaded to it…unless that access is blocked by the publisher inserting code into the file to prevent it. That’s why you can have the device read personal documents to you (I’ve done that). I believe that this sort of access blocking disproportionately disadvantages the disabled, although I also believe it is legal (provided that there is at least one accessible version of each e-book available, however, that one can require a certification of disability). For that reason, I don’t deliberately link to books which block TTS access here (although it may happen accidentally, particularly if the access is blocked after I’ve linked it). I do believe this is a personal decision, and there  are legitimate arguments for purchasing those books. 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Today’s KDD: up to 80% off “beach reads”

July 25, 2015

Today’s KDD: up to 80% off “beach reads”

One of today’s

Kindle Daily Deals (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

is up to 80% off “beach reads”.

Given that I would call that a pretty fuzzy category, it means that there is a good variety in this of 45 titles.

I’m not a fan of the beach,  unless it’s overcast…I really don’t like being out in the sun. :) Oh, I love seeing the nature there, but just sitting there baking in the solar radiation? Not my thing.

That doesn’t mean, though, that I wouldn’t want to read any of these books ;)

Titles include:

  • Zoo by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge (there is currently a TV adaptation running…”revenge of nature” has been the plot of many movies/books: it was arguably a genre in the 1970s)
  • The Littlest Angel (And Baby Makes Three Book 10 by Sherryl Woods
  • Night Moves by Nora Roberts
  • The Precious One by Marisa de los Santos
  • The Sheltering Sky by Paul Bowles
  • Protection Detail (Capitol K-9 Unit) by Shirlee McCoy
  • Kissing in America by Margo Rabb
  • The Unimaginable by Dina Silver
  • Help for the Haunted by John Searles

Hm…if I did have a beach read, it seems to me like I’d go with non-fiction nature science, perhaps, like Gerald Durrell (unfortunately not available for the Kindle).

Enjoy!

What are your favorite “beach reads”? Feel free to share with me and my readers by commenting on  this post.

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

*When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.

Dr. Seuss classics: on sale for $1.99 each

July 25, 2015

Dr. Seuss classics: on sale for $1.99 each

There is a previously unpublished Dr. Seuss book which you can pre-order now for delivery on Tuesday, July 28th:

What Pet Should I Get? (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

This will surely be a big hit…and that will make the second “discovered” book this year that may be a top seller, along with

Go Set a Watchman (at AmazonSmile: benefit a non-profit of your choice by shopping*)

I guarantee you right now that both tradpubs  (traditional publishers) and authors with their own rights (which may have reverted) are making a much more careful search of old file cabinets.  ;)

No doubt in connection with that, you can get classic Dr.  Seuss books for $1.99 each!

Dr. Seuss Kindle books in the USA store (at AmazonSmile*)

Yes, these are the titles…they include the most popular.

Before I give you a listing, let me point out that they will say that the text-to-speech is not enabled. In a case like this, it won’t be because the publisher has deliberately blocked the text-to-speech access. I’m reasonably confident that it is  because the text is part of the images: TTS can’t access that.

Okay, here are some of the titles:

  • The Cat in the Hat
  • Fox in Socks
  • Oh, the Places You’ll Go!
  • One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish
  • Green Eggs and Ham
  • The Lorax

There are 46 results on that page…that doesn’t mean 46 individual Dr. Seuss books (there is at least one omnibus), and What Pet is still $9.99.

Regardless, this is a great deal! I don’t know how long it will last.

Remember that you can buy these now to give as gifts, and delay delivery until the appropriate gift giving occasion. Oh, the Places You Go is a very popular graduation gift, for example…

Enjoy!

Join thousands of readers and try the free ILMK magazine at Flipboard!

* I am linking to the same thing at the regular Amazon site, and at AmazonSmile. When you shop at AmazonSmile, half a percent of your purchase price on eligible items goes to a non-profit you choose. It will feel just like shopping at Amazon: you’ll be using your same account. The one thing for you that is different is that you pick a non-profit the first time you go (which you can change whenever you want)…and the good feeling you’ll get. :) Shop ’til you help! :) 

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the I Love My Kindle blog. To support this or other blogs/organizations, buy  Amazon Gift Cards from a link on the site, then use those to buy your items. There will be no cost to you, and a benefit to them.


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