Category: Housekeeping
Housekeeping: Lawsuit Round 2 4 comments
Lawsuit the Sequel
If you are successful one time, try it again. The law firm that successfully sued Apple and major publishers for e-book price fixing way back in 2011 has filed a class action suit against Amazon. The suit accuses Amazon of colluding with the Big Five publishers to limit competition for e-books.
Amazon is the defendent while publishers Hachette, HarperCollins, Macmillan, Simon & Schuster, and Penguin Random House are listed as as “co-conspirators” in a pricing scheme to keep e-book price artificially high.
The lawsuit was filed the same week Connecticut Attorney General William Tong (D) said his office has an “active and ongoing antitrust investigation” into Amazon over “potentially anticompetitive terms in their e-book distribution agreements with certain publishers.”
Read more about the filing here.
Stay tuned. A few years from now we may receive a large credit at Amazon in settlement of the lawsuit.
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Housekeeping: Echo Frames and Amazon Editors’ Top 20 2 comments
Echo Frames
If you didn’t find the perfect gift under the tree over the holidays, treat yourself to a pair of Echo Frames for $249.99.
With this fashionable eyewear you will get:
• Glasses with open-ear audio and hands-free access to Alexa.
• Alexa – Make calls, set reminders, add to your to-do lists, get the news, listen to podcasts, or control your smart home from anywhere.
• Open-ear audio – Echo Frames direct sound to your ears while minimizing what others can hear. Plus, they can adjust volume based on the noise level of your environment.
• VIP Filter – Customize which notifications to receive from the contacts and apps on your phone that matter to you.
• All-day wear – Echo Frames are lightweight, splash-resistant, and compatible with most prescription lenses.
• Battery life – Get over 2 hours of talk time, Alexa interactions, and media playback over a 14-hour day. Or, up to 4 hours of nonstop listening on a full charge.
• Does even more – Supports access to Google Assistant and Siri from a compatible device.
• Designed to protect your privacy – Microphones are designed to respond to the voice of the person wearing the frames and turn off with the double-press of a button.
NOTE: I haven’t ordered the frames yet. Maybe when spring arrives I’ll splurge.

 
Check out the Amazon Editor’s Best Book of 2020 along with their Top 20

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Housekeeping: A sweet Christmas message from our European friends 6 comments
A Christmas Message
This commercial created by German ad agency Jung von Matt for Dutch mail-order pharmacy Doc Morris is perfection for this holiday season.
If you haven’t seen it, please take a couple of minutes and watch to the very end. Watch it a couple of times.

 

 

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Housekeeping: Cover story and Christmas reads 0 comments
Give Me a Cover!
Last week I wrote of my frustration with the default device being overwritten with MY KINDLE LIBRARY. This week I’m complaining about the downloads to my Voyage. Book covers for new downloads were no longer appearing. Instead a generic book shape with title and author was displayed.
I searched the web for answers and found it is a common problem. One solution was to download software and perform techy things. I immediately rejected that idea.
The solution that worked for me was to reset my Kindle back to factory settings. I copied the names of the book that were downloaded on my Voyage so I could reload after the reset. The negative of this solution is that the date of the registration of the device is set to the current date.

 

Love Christmas Books!
I’ll admit to loving Christmas books – romances, mysteries, historicals, family fiction, children’s books. I cannot consume all that I want during the holiday season.
I’ve been posting multiple Christmas titles the last few weeks as publishers are slashing the prices to entice us to buy more. With a 4-6 week optimum sales window, they are competing for our patronage. Now is the time to fill your Kindle library. The books below are only 99 cents each.

 

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Housekeeping: Default Device Woes and Credits Expire 2 comments
Default Device
Don’t want to be a complainer, but several times in the past few weeks my default Kindle device for downloading new purchases has been replaced by MY KINDLE LIBRARY.
I could understand if this occurred once but three times I have had to re-identify my Voyage as my default device. Frankly, it’s annoying!
 
Credits Expire

I’m probably the last person in the world to know this, but those no-rush rewards for delayed shipping expire. I’ve usually redeemed them quickly and not given it a thought.
I recently clicked on the DETAILS link beside the line YOUR CREDITS and learned the expiration dates.

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Housekeeping: Ever Thankful and Susie’s Thanksgiving Memory 3 comments
Ever Thankful
Who could have imagined 2020 when we celebrated Thanksgiving a year ago? As challenging as the times have been and may be in the near future, we have many reasons to be thankful.
• Writers and editors continue to release gripping and compelling novels, thorough biographies and histories and self-help tomes.
• Talented narrators are producing audiobooks in record numbers.
• When the pandemic came, Amazon had stream-lined logistics in place to meet the world’s needs and fulfilled record-breaking order numbers as efficiently as possible.
• The internet has eased the isolation of quarantine, sheltering-in-place and separation from loved ones.
• In all the world’s uncertainty, God is on His throne and is not surprised by the events that unfold. We are ever thankful.

 

Susie’s Thanksgiving Memory
We always celebrated Thanksgiving at Grandma’s. I remember one year she had the table set with her dogwood china (Grandma always had it together!) and on each plate were seven pieces of candy corn to represent the daily rations for the pilgrims their first winter. A reminder that Thanksgiving’s true roots were not in abundance but in endurance. This year, I am thankful for things that once seemed insignificant – to share a meal with family, a long conversation with a friend, freedom to worship, the breath to start a new day and most of all, the love of God that sustains us. Wishing you a very happy Thanksgiving and God’s blessings to you and your family.
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Housekeeping: Selling S&S; Pharmacy and Audible Black Friday 2 comments
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Read the full disclosure here.
 
Auction Block
Simon & Schuster, the nation’s third largest publisher, is on the auction block. The top contenders in the bidding process are HarperCollins and Penguin Random House (PRH) – the two largest publishers in the country.
The continued consolidation of publishing houses is sad. Fewer large publishers leads to a consolidation of ideas and reduces competition. Fewer editors narrows the spectrum of books available. Perhaps a smaller publisher will rise to fill the gap.
 
Pharmacy Is Open
Amazon has announced that their pharmacy is now open. Amazon is promising a simple process and may have better prices for consumers who do not use insurance plans. Competition may help keep prices in check for all consumers.

 
Audible $6 Sale
Audible has announced a Black Friday sale starting Sunday November 22 and ending November 30. Audible is promising hundreds of titles for only $6 each. Even sweeter: Buy four or more titles and get a $5 credit.
Audible has teased us with a few titles:
American Gods: Tenth Anniversary Edition (A Full Cast Production) by Neil Gaiman
28 Summers by Elin Hilderbrand
The Lincoln Conspiracy by Brad Meltzer
Calypso by David Sedaris
Seven Stones to Stand or Fall: A Collection of Outlander Fiction by Diana Gabaldon
And hundreds more!
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Housekeeping: Throwback to Veterans Day 2011 – A personal post and a book review 2 comments
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Read the full disclosure here.
 
Enjoy this throwback post to Veterans Day 2011. Our wonderful father passed away in 2016. We are proud of his service to our country.
 
Today is Veterans Day, a day to remember the men and women who have served in the military around the world. The two ladies who run this website are proud of their father, an American veteran. Please allow us to tell you about him.
 
Dad began his military service in February 1942. He was assigned to the Army Air Corps based in Kunming, China, as a mechanic on B-24 aircrafts. The China-Burma-India Theatre fought the Japanese who were attacking China. The only way to deliver supplies to the troops fighting in China and north of the Himalayan Mountains was to fly over the Hump, a perilous journey on any day. The planes that carried the supplies were the B-24 airplanes my dad serviced. He returned to the United States in October 1945.

 

Last week my father and 62 other WWII, Korean, and Vietnam veterans participated in an Honor Flight – a non-profit organization whose mission is to take every able veteran to Washington, DC, to see the national monuments which honor their service. Just a few weeks shy of his 92nd birthday, my father took his first commercial flight ever, spent a whirlwind day with comrades and volunteers touring the capital city, and returned to a 200-member motorcycle escort and a thousand well-wishers. The top picture is Dad at 22; the lower picture nearly 70 years later.

 

Only my father could get me to read military fiction. As Veterans Day was approaching, I began searching the Kindle Store for a book about where my dad had served. Last Known Position is just the book. Written by William L. Heath, the book was published in 1949. Mr. Heath received the Distinguished Flying Cross for service in the CBI Theatre and flying the Hump.
 
The book is short. The story is powerful. Four young men, the flight crew of a B-24, must deliver fuel to troops stationed north of the Hump. Each of them could be someone you know – a nephew, a neighbor, the young man working in a store you frequent, your son. They have been thrown into a war and, even though they don’t understand all the implications of the world struggle, they know their responsibilities and perform them well. Each has a method of escaping the present to cope with the stress of war.
 
The story requires detail of the plane and the flying process. This is all woven into the story and doesn’t read like a technical manual. The story is suspenseful and I whispered a prayer for these young men, hopeful all would end well yet fearful that it wouldn’t.
 
Dad read the book on his Kindle. He said it is factual and that he knew the places in the book. I strongly recommend this book this Veterans Day. You will meet four young men who fought to preserve freedom in the world and you will remember that freedom isn’t free. God bless every man and women who has served to protect the world.

 

Book description: The planes these men flew were called tankers – B-24’s with the guns and turrets removed and four large containers of gas in the bomb bays instead of bombs. They flew these planes with a minimum crew of pilot, copilot, radio operator, and engineer; and they went out on their missions unescorted and defenseless, crossing the dangerous mountain terrain day and night in all forms of weather, most of it bad.
 
It was not as bad a war as some men fought, but there were times when it was bad enough. And since the real adversary was the weather through which these men flew, their most gallant campaigns aloft were reduced to lonely, private struggles for survival. The book is available today for $2.99.
 
Click here to purchase Last Known Position

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Housekeeping: Two First Reads, 100 Years of Agatha Christie 0 comments
Prime Members First Reads
As part of Prime Day, Amazon is allowing Prime members to download two books from this month’s First Reads selections.
I usually wait until the second half of the month to choose my books when the titles have plenty of reviews. Hope you find two that interest you.

 

Agatha Christie, 100 Years
October marks the 100th anniversary of Agatha Christie publishing her first whodunit – The Mysterious Affair at Styles (Just 44 cents).
William Morrow just released a collection of Ms. Christie’s most puzzling winter-themed tales – Midwinter Murder: Fireside Tales from the Queen of Mystery ($11.99). This chilling compendium of short stories—some featuring beloved detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple—is an essential omnibus for Christie fans and the perfect holiday gift for mystery lovers.
A few of Ms. Christie’s short stories are selling for only 20 cents each. You can browse 40 pages of her writings available on Kindle here.
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Read the full disclosure here.
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Housekeeping: Prime Day to Holiday 8 comments
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Read the full disclosure here.
 
Prime Day Recap
Prime Day 2020 – the day that almost wasn’t – is behind us. Here are a few of my thoughts:
• The Kindle books featured on Prime Day 1 were great selections; Prime Day 2 not so great.
• Audible’s deals during Prime Day were varied and a great price. Glad they joined the event.
• Amazon devices were selling at great prices too. Practically every reader, tablet, Alexa-enabled speaker, Ring security and more was on sale.
• Having the event in October and allowing most items to be returned in January may have spurred holiday shopping.
• Big vendors jumped on board giving coupons for multi-purchases. I bought a couple boxes of Bounce dryer sheets and saved $5.
• Amazon is pushing to be a big force in groceries and had some good deals. My husband snacks on dried cranberries so I grabbed two of these 3-pound bags of Ocean Spray Craisins for only $6.68 each. The price is still good today. For comparison, a 24-oz bag is $5.88.
If you had time to follow the lightning deals and look through the many categories, there were deals. My best deal was the $18 in credits for digital items because I passed on next-day shipping. Time to Kindle book shop!
Please tell us if you found great deals or if it was Prime Bust for you.
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Housekeeping: Sweet Audible Deal 4 comments
Sweet Audible Deal
Please read to the end!
Audible is offering a sweet deal for Prime Day – two years of Audible Premium Plus membership for $99.50/year (saving $50 a year). With this membership, you receive 12 credits immediately, access to the Audible Plus catalog to listen to thousands of titles free, access to members only sales and the daily deals. If you aren’t a member, go here to see the deal.


If you are an Audible member, you can get the deal, too. I started a chat session with a rep to ask about it.
Initial Question: 1::membership:::2::pause_switch_cancel:::
I have been a loyal member of Audible for years. I see there is a deal where new members can get 2 years of Audible membership for $99.50/year for 2 years. May I get that deal too? I would love to get a sweet deal like that!
09:42 AM PDT (Audible): Thank you for contacting Audible. My name is Xxxxx, I can certainly look into this for you.
09:43 AM PDT Xxxxx: Hi, Paula. Thank you very much for being a loyal listener with our service. We really really appreciate you. And thank you so much for showing interest with our new promotion.
09:44 AM PDT Xxxxx: You are correct that we are offering $99.50 which is good for a whole year and what you can get is 12 credits plus the membership benefits.

 
At this point I sent the link from Audible and the customer support rep checked to see if he could give me the 2-year deal. I also spent a bit of time emphasizing that this is a 2-year deal.
 
09:56 AM PDT Xxxxx: Sure. I can definitely enrolled (sic) you to that one and your next billing cycle will be on October 2021.
09:57 AM PDT Paula: Wonderful! Thank you for doing this! I will remain loyal to Audible with this special promotion you have extended to me.
09:58 AM PDT Xxxxx: Thank you so much for being a loyal listener. We really appreciate you.

 
My usual membership renewed in August and with this deal, I now have 24 credits. I’m hoping Audible has a 2-for-1 or 2-for-3 sale soon. Or I just might use them on a few Christmas novels.
A year from now if the renewal isn’t $99.50, I’ll be contacting Audible again and sharing the transcript of the call.
If you want this deal, I hope you are successful!

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Housekeeping: THAT’S customer service 6 comments
Customer service above and beyond
As you know I’ve come to love audiobooks. I listen while working on this site, exercising, preparing meals, commuting and just about every other opportunity I find.
My Audible.com library is ridiculously large. Probably 10% of the titles are less than three hours and I’ve listened to more than 800 of the other books.
A year and a half ago a discount site began selling great audiobooks at great prices – chirpbooks.com. The site doesn’t require a subscription and they tell you when the deal ends. Some audiobooks are as low as 99 cents. I tend to purchase books priced $3.99 – $5.99 – a significant savings over Audible.com.
I use the Chirp app on my phone and loved it. Well, loved it right up until September 17th. Chirp tech support updated the app that stopped it dead in its tracks. After uninstalling and reloading the app several times, rebooting my phone, doing the install/uninstall dance a few more times, waiting a couple of days, trying again, confirming the right version of Android and more, I was frustrated. I sent an email to Chirp support.
Yesterday a very kind woman named Grace sent an email telling me that this was a known issue and that the app developers were working day and night to resolve it. To apologize for the inconvenience, Grace refunded my last three purchases. She didn’t mean the last three audiobooks I bought, she meant the last three carts of audiobooks. The total credit was $106 for 27 books. THAT’S customer service.
If you haven’t giving Chirp a look-see and you want to buy audiobooks at great prices, click here. I am not an affiliate of Chirpbooks.
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