Category: Young Adult
Housekeeping – Server changes; Goodreads book tracking; and Cheap Reads 6 comments

Whew! Glad that’s over
This week we transitioned to a new server and cleared a few speed bumps along the way. The site is growing and we’ve updated and expanded to improve your experience. You will be able to buy cheap reads faster than ever before. If you experience any glitches on our site, please let us know. Our IT support will be right on it.
Meeting Goals; Keeping Track
At the beginning of 2011, I (Susan) decided I wanted to track how many books I read, instead of just having a vague idea. I asked for suggestions and several of you recommended Goodreads.
It’s like a social network for book lovers, where you can track what books you’re reading, share reviews and interact with other readers. It has been a lot of fun to check in with you and see the books you enjoy. Signing up for the 2011 Reading Challenge, I made a goal to read 55 books (that’s more than one a week!) and by the end of the year, had read 70. A few were children’s books but I discovered I read more than I thought.
One of the things I enjoy most about Goodreads is the virtual book shelf where you can line up the covers of books you’ve read. I scanned through the titles from 2011 and it was like reconnecting with some old friends (and a few distant acquaintances who had sucked up my time.)
One of my favorite books for the year was The Hunger Games.
This series is written for young adults, but many grown ups have enjoyed it as well. I had avoided it because I thought it would be violent but found it a compelling character study, except for the third book, which was a disappointment compared to the first two. The first book of trilogy is selling for $4.69.
For the 2012 Reading Challenge, my goal is 62 books. Do you have a reading goal this year? How many books do you hope to get to know in 2012?
Cheap Reads
Each short book below is only 89 cents – history, language and contemporary fiction.

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Book Review: The Merchant’s Daughter – Young adult Christian romance – $1.99 3 comments

I just read this book and am delighted to tell you it is being offered for $1.99 on the Kindle.
If you believe in fairy tales, or just enjoy the magic of romance, you’ll love Melanie Dickerson’s newest book The Merchant’s Daughter.
This Christian fiction is loosely based on the classic tale of Beauty and the Beast. Like her first novel, The Healer’s Apprentice ($1.99) inspired by Sleeping Beauty, this story is set in medieval Europe, this time in England.
Anabel is the daughter of a merchant, but after his death her family does not fulfill its obligation to work in the lord’s fields. She is forced to become an indentured servant for three years at the home of Lord Ranulf le Wyse. Rumors swirl about the irritable Lord le Wyse, who lost an eye and the use of his hand when he was mauled by a wolf. Anabel longs to join a nunnery, so she can read the Bible and escape marriage to Bailiff Tom, which her brother is trying to force upon her.
When Lord le Wyse protects her against the bailiff’s advances, a fragile friendship grows between them and Anabel believes he may not be the beast the servant girls whisper that he is.
This is an enchanting story with engaging characters, although at times I was frustrated with Anabel’s indecision. This is actually Christian fiction for young adults, so it reads quickly and the romance is tender, yet I thoroughly enjoyed it. A very interesting part of the story explored the challenges for people who didn’t have access to the Bible and priests who did not preach the word.
The Merchant’s Daughter is SuperCheap at just $1.99 on Kindle.

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Housekeeping – Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and a Cheap Read 0 comments

We wish a happy and safe Thanksgiving to each of you today. We are grateful for each of you who visit our site and tell others about us. You motivate and inspire us! We will be enjoying the day with family and friends and have reduced our posting schedule this afternoon and evening.
I have been engrossed in The Hunger Games Trilogy ($17.85) and am thrilled to find it really is as good as promised. I’m in the middle of Book 2 – Catching Fire ($7.70) where a rebellion is building because the people are starving. By contrast, my biggest challenge in preparing the Thanksgiving meal was fighting off the hordes at the grocery store.
The last few months, I have been keeping a gratitude journal, inspired by Ann Voskamp’s One Thousand Gifts ($9.99). I’m up to 263 of everyday gifts that make me thankful. Some highlights:
#4 Morning coffee
#17 Social events where it is acceptable to wear flip flops
#46 A waitress who gives good advice on what to order
#90 and #123 Pain reliever
#119 A friend’s medical test coming back negative
#235 Books I want to live in
Have you read a book this year that has motivated you to an action? Leave a comment to tell us about it?
Special Offers Humor Book
If you have the Kindle with Special Offers, today is the last day to claim the offer of one humor book for $1.00.
After the Pumpkin Pie
Amazon’s Black Friday Store is open and the deals are plentiful. Discounts on hundreds of popular gift items like cameras, video games, movies, tools, watches, jewelry, clothing and more, are available now. Shop from home and no one will even know you had another piece of pie.
A Cheap Read for the next holiday – Wishin’ and Hopin’ – $1.99
It’s 1964 and ten-year-old Felix is sure of a few things: the birds and the bees are puzzling, television is magical, and this is one Christmas he’ll never forget. LBJ and Lady Bird are in the White House, Meet the Beatles is on everyone’s turntable, and Felix Funicello (distant cousin of the iconic Annette!) is doing his best to navigate fifth grade—easier said than done when scary movies still give you nightmares and you bear a striking resemblance to a certain adorable cartoon boy.
Back in his beloved fictional town of Three Rivers, Connecticut, with a new cast of endearing characters, Wally Lamb takes his readers straight into the halls of St. Aloysius Gonzaga Parochial School—where Mother Filomina’s word is law and goody-two-shoes Rosalie Twerski is sure to be minding everyone’s business. But grammar and arithmetic move to the back burner this holiday season with the sudden arrivals of substitute teacher Madame Frechette, straight from Québec, and feisty Russian student Zhenya Kabakova. While Felix learns the meaning of French kissing, cultural misunderstanding, and tableaux vivants, Wishin’ and Hopin’ barrels toward one outrageous Christmas.
From the Funicello family’s bus-station lunch counter to the elementary school playground (with an uproarious stop at the Pillsbury Bake-Off), Wishin’ and Hopin’ is a vivid slice of 1960s life, a wise and witty holiday tale that celebrates where we’ve been—and how far we’ve come. You can buy this book today for only $1.99.

Click here to purchase Wishin’ and Hopin’

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Housekeeping – Cheap reads for the season, 47North, and Kindles in the wild 4 comments

Vampires, Ghosts, Werewolves, Horror and More
Now is the time of the year when publishers offer great prices on books intended to scare you witless. In the coming days, you will see many books about vampires, werewolves, horror, ghosts, fantasy, and all things grisly and ghastly. Children’s books are also discounted this month and we are featuring them on our jr. edition. The three books below are for children, tweens and teens and selling for $1.99 each.

Amazon announces another publishing imprint
Amazon recently announced the launch of their own publishing imprint for science fiction, fantasy and horror – 47North. The name is based on the latitude coordinates of Seattle, the location of Amazon’s corporate offices. Click here read the full press release.
Among the authors who will have books released in the next few months are Lee Goldberg, Dave Duncan, Arik Davis, Stephen Leather, and BV Larson.
The first books under the imprint will release later this month. You can pre-order the first book in the Dead Man series by Lee Goldberg and William Rabkin today with delivery scheduled for October 24.
Face Of Evil: ($2.99) Matt Cahill is a widower leading a quiet, solitary life-cutting wood at a lumber mill in the Pacific Northwest, watching out for his trouble-prone friend Andy, and making his first, tentative attempt at romance with Rachel. But a trip with Rachel to a ski resort goes tragically wrong and he is killed in an avalanche. That should be the end of his story. But for Matt, it’s only the beginning, the first step in a horrifying odyssey across a dark world that exists within our own…and where he must confront a violent, supernatural entity that spreads evil among us like a plague…
Sitting in the Designated Kindle Row
Jean Brashear sent this wonderful picture and told us the story behind it:

I was flying Southwest Airlines, returning from being the retreat speaker for Romance Writers Ink in Tulsa. There was already someone in the aisle seat, and I sat down in the window seat and immediately pulled out my Kindle because I was getting close to the end of the book. Then another young man came to sit in the middle and said, “This is funny.” I looked up and realized all three of us were reading Kindles!
I asked them if we could get a picture, and the man across the aisle helped out. He was grinning, too. He asked, “So are all of you reading the same thing?” Uh…nope! I was reading a historical romance, Aisle Guy was reading Game of Thrones, and I don’t know what our middle seatmate was reading because there *is* a no-snooping etiquette, right?
I finished my book and was delighted to be able to download another while in the air, thanks to Southwest’s WiFi–go, Kindle and Southwest!

Jean has three indie-published books available for the Kindle. The romance novella and novels below are selling for 99 cents, $2.99, and $3.99, respectively:

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Housekeeping – From the In-Box, Clever Graphics, Sci-Fi, and Top Four Summer Reads 4 comments

Out of the in-box
Vicki dropped us a note telling us about a fraud alert from her credit card company. Vicki immediately thought of her daughter and the new phone she had acquired. But, no, it wasn’t her daughter. Vicki had tripped the fraud alert with her many small purchase amounts from Amazon. When she explained the charges were legitimate and that she loved to read and found books through DailyCheapReads, the credit card company representative took down the website address to share with her mother – a woman who also loves to read and loves her Kindle.
We appreciate that you share the site with others and hope that you don’t trip a fraud alert to have the opportunity. I’ve often wondered why Amazon doesn’t total our Kindle purchases at the end of the day and send one charge through to the credit card company. Then again, it doesn’t look so bad when it is in $1.99, $2.99, and similar doses.

Dog Days and a clever graphic
While searching for a graphic to use use for our Dog Days of Summer posts, I came across this clever graphic titled Dog-Eared Kindle. I don’t recommend you try this. Even Amazon’s stellar customer care might not send a replacement Kindle.
Read the book before the movie releases
Suzanne Collins is one of the first young adult authors to sell over one million Kindle ebooks. The Hunger Games, the first in her popular trilogy, has been made into a movie . The movie is rumored to release sometime in March of next year. The book is much beloved by young adults and adults; it is frequently chosen for discussions in book clubs and on book forums. Read it before the movie at the great price of $4.69.
Book description: In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before-and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love. You can buy the book for $4.69 today.
Top Four Summer Reads
Over the next few weeks we will be featuring posts of the Top Four Summer reads of several authors and seasoned book reviewers. Today are my (Paula) top four. With a full-time job and the three sites, time to read is scarce. Much of my reading is for the jr. edition of DailyCheapReads or shorter works of fiction.
In the Eye of the Beholder: (99 cents) A charming story of how two young men who were in school together continued on through adulthood, crossing paths even though they are very different men with divergent careers. The beauty of any created work – whether a person or man-made art – is indeed in the eye of the beholder. The ending was not expected, but re-enforced the idea of the story title. Pen and ink drawings add a bit of whimsy to the story. The product description states that this story is one of Jeffrey Archer’s personal favorites which makes me wonder if the story is autobiographical.

Royal Weddings: An Original Anthology: ($1.99) Ahhh, a royal wedding. I joined the worldwide wedding watchers and loved the ceremony. I also read a few books released this spring in honor of the event. The three short Regency romances in this anthology were written by favorite authors and were rich with pomp and pageantry of British society. My favorite was Gaelen Foley’s Ever After. A countess falls in love with her husband. Imagine that!
The Millionaire Next Door: ($8.90) I’ve read several of Dr. Stanley’s books and purchased this book when it was included in the Sunshine Deals. Even as a re-read I learned many behaviors that all of us can practice to be wiser with our money and assets. No doubt some of the people living in our town are millionaires. . . . they just don’t toot their horn about it.
The Husband Trap: ($4.99) During a three day trip I read this first book in an historic romance trilogy by Tracy Anne Warren. It’s a familiar plot of twin sisters trading places at a wedding. The bad twin was very bad; the good twin was just a little too gullible, but overall a good summer read. I found time to read the remaining two books of the trilogy: The Wife Trap ($5.99) and The Wedding Trap ($5.99). The bad twin gets her come-uppance.

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Book Review: Saint Training 0 comments

Mary Clare has purposed in her heart to commit her life to serving God and the Catholic church, becoming a mother superior in her quest for perfection. A topic this serious should not be laugh-out-loud funny, but it is. With Saint Training, Elizabeth Fixmer has written a delightful novel for the middle grades that is a funny read for children and adults alike.
Mary Clare is the oldest daughter in a very large family. She takes on the weight of too little money for the family’s needs, too much work to be done around the house, and too many changes in her world and around the world in 1967.
Mary Clare experiences conflicted feelings as she tries to fix everything around her, understand her changing emotions, and practice being a saint, sin-free and serving others. In seeking sinlessness, poor Mary Clare is a failure before she begins, but her dogged determination is admirable.
If you are familiar with Catholic schools or mass, the book will be more meaningful. Even without the background, the book is enjoyable. Not reading this book just might be a sin.
I downloaded the book when Zondervan Publishing offered it free last year. Today Saint Training is selling for only 99 cents . The book isn’t preachy; there’s no hidden message; it’s just a fun read.
Click here to purchase Saint Training

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Housekeeping – Worst Case Scenario, Manage Your Kindle and Cheap Reads 2 comments

What’s the Worst that Could Happen?
Summer is such a fun time and the book bargains coming from the Kindle Store are making the month of June especially fun. I’ve been scrambling to get the posts together and out so you can take advantage of the sales prices as I don’t know how long the prices will hold. If you have spent the family vacation fund on books, you can always suggest staying at home for two weeks and reading your great purchases.
Your children might consider that a worst case scenario.
Several Worst Case Scenario books are offered in the Sunshine Deals. As avid Kindle readers, we’ve imagined some worst case scenarios and put together some polls for the summer that will cause you to shudder. Take a look at the first poll on the right sidebar.
Here are several Worst Case Scenario books available at supercheap prices. The first four are $1.99 each; the last two for children are 99 cents each.

Under Better Management
Amazon has updated and expanded the “Manage Your Kindle” page on their website. Your Kindle library loads first on the screen. If it contains many items (like mine) it may take a while to load. You can now select from the left sidebar all your content or by type, such as book, blog, or active content.
The “Pending Deliveries” category is particularly useful if you have more than one device. You now see what is pending and to what device is scheduled to receive the download. Pre-orders are included in this area and can be cancelled and viewed with just the click of the mouse.
The serial number of your Kindle is provided under “Manage Your Devices” along with a picture of your Kindle device. While that is new, the payment settings section is the same.
If you subscribe to a blog, newspaper or magazine, you can now send the past issues to another device. Before this you were limited to one device for any subscription and had to buy multiple subscriptions to read a blog or magazine on your Kindle and phone application. The improvement is fulfilling Amazon’s pledge that you can buy it once and read it anywhere.
Kindle Support and the Getting Started Guide are also on the page. Overall, it’s a great improvement in allowing the users to have better access to information and give them self-service. We all need a better management tool as books in the Kindle Store have now passed the 1 million mark.

Cheap Reads on the jr. edition
If you enjoyed all the great books we featured yesterday for only $1.99 and $2.99 each, you will want to go to our jr. edition today. At noon and 4:00pm today we will have two posts featuring $1.99 and $2.99 books for children, tweens and teens. If you enjoy young adult fantasy and fiction, you might find more great books for your summer reading.

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Book Review: Must’ve Done Something Good 0 comments

I’m trying to think of a word besides sweet. Charming? Touching? Uplifting?
Sweet, it turns out, is the best word I can find for Must’ve Done Something Good by Cheryl Cory that combines a coming-of-age story with romance, The Sound of Music and Pride and Prejudice.
A scary plane ride convinces 25-year-old Sylvie O’Rourke to quit her boring job as a newspaper reporter and do something “good” with her life, which leads to becoming an English teacher at St. Matthew’s, a financially strapped Catholic high school. The book title is taken from a song in the Sound of Music, the favorite movie of Sylvie and her two sisters.
Sylvie’s trials as a first-year teacher are entertaining with her witty narration. She becomes friends with Ben, another young teacher, but doesn’t understand why she is snubbed by the attractive fellow English teacher Evan Danes. Trying to figure out who she can trust in the school environment leaves her very confused. Discussions with her students sometimes energize her, while grading papers is deflating.
The relationships that develop between Sylvie and her students as they all try to understand themselves is truly wonderful. Sylvie’s realistic appraisal of herself and her teaching skills are both funny and uplifting.
At times, the interaction between the teachers seemed more suited for young teens than for adults and I had trouble seeing character development in anyone beside Sylvie and a few students. There were also a few times when the story hinted at other developments, but didn’t follow through. There were several times, though, that the story really pulled through with some sweet surprises than made it very worthwhile.
Must’ve Done Something Good is a good read for adults and I would highly recommend it for young adults, who would gain a lot of insight into their teachers. Today the book is selling for only $2.99.

Click here to purchase Must’ve Done Something Good

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Housekeeping – Beach Reads, E-Book Trends, and Cheap jr. Reads 1 comment

Who's ready for summer?!

In the Good Ole Summertime
June has arrived on the calendar and most of the United States is enjoying the weather and activities that come with the season such as water sports, outdoor dining, vacations, and beach reads – those delicious guilty pleasures that readers enjoy while on vacation or taking a vacation from the routine. Some consider a beach read a book that is light-hearted, fun, an easy read without a deeper meaning. Others consider a beach read a book outside their normal fare – a new genre or a new author. Have you read a book you would call a beach read that was a great read? One that surprised you as you read it? Drop us a note via the Your Two Cents Worth tab and tell us about your book. It doesn’t have to be a cheap read. We’ll share some of the favorites on the site over the summer months. Just yesterday Katie sent a note about A Dead Red Cadillac: This book was a LOT better than I expected it to be–it was a fast light read.
Amazon’s Sunshine Deals

Yesterday Amazon introduced its Sunshine Deals – over 600 books selling for 99 cents, $1.99, and $2.99. The books are history, mysteries, romances, Christian fiction, cookbooks, health and diet books, and much more. The sale ends at 23:59 (PDT) Wednesday, June 15, 2011. All of the books in the Sunshine Deal are books from publishers who do not participate in the agency model. I’ll be sifting through the many books and preparing posts that categorize the books by genre.
If video killed the radio star… does Kindle mean the death of print books?
In an article in The American, John Steele Gordon gives some interesting insight. He says the transformation taking place now is the biggest thing to hit publishing since Gutenberg. He also points out that reports of radio’s death were a bit premature. It’s changed, certainly, since the days of fireside chats with FDR, but radio persists. Speaking of fire, why is it that many new homes have fireplaces built in them? Didn’t central furnaces make them obsolete? Read here for some great observation on the e-book trends and modern life.
Great cheap reads from the jr. edition of DailyCheapReads
Here are some of the great cheap reads we have featured recently on the jr. edition of DailyCheapReads selling for 99 cents, $1.99, and $2.99:

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Housekeeping: Successful Authors, Post Times and Cheap Reads 1 comment

Electronic Book Publishing Companies
People love a success story. We cheer when someone does well; wish that all who are working toward noble goals achieve their dreams; and long for the same for ourselves and family.
Electronic books have given the opportunity for success to many authors who might not otherwise catch the eye of traditional publishers. An exciting success story has been the rise of Amanda Hocking, a 26-year-old indie author who has earned over $1 million.
She caught the eye of the traditional publisher and has signed a four-book deal with a traditional publisher. Many of you purchased Hocking’s books and helped her to success and recognition.
One of our readers recently sent a note about another indie author who became well-known through the e-book experience. Here are excerpts from her note:

One of the first books I starting reading and fell in love with was from an indie. I am one of those people who can look past some spelling, format, grammar issues to focus on a good story and loved the idea of getting cheaper prices and finding gems in the rough so to speak. This book I started reading was book one of a planned five-book series. Book one and book two were out with a third book out soon. . . I talked several people into buying it and using Kindle for PC if they didn’t have a Kindle just to get people to try [the author] out.

This author became quite famous and approached publishers to negotiate the sale of the remaining books in the series. To make a long story short, our reader still doesn’t have book three on her Kindle because the author sold her book to Sterling Publishing, a wholly-owned publishing company of Barnes and Noble. At this time B&N is not producing a Kindle version. Our reader has the option of buying the book in hardcover or buying the book for a nook (which she doesn’t own) or a nook application. The original two books in the series have been pulled from the Kindle Store, too.
Are we happy to see this author succeed? At best, we have mixed emotions. I am happy that the consumers have chosen the authors who will rise to the top. Our reader feels betrayed in that some of the very people who helped this woman succeed now must buy her books in a different format or through a different company to continue reading the series. We are probably all saddened that the e-book publishing companies are not making books available to all e-readers.

Amazon has several publishing companies – AmazonEncore, Amazon Crossing, and the recently announced Montlake for romance titles. I checked a few random titles from these publishing companies and the books were not available for the Nook.

Yes, we love a success story. We also want to have access to the books we want in the format we prefer. Print books, no matter who published them, were available to all to consume without expense beyond the book. Times are changing . . . . and these are the growing pains of emerging technologies and content. Hold on for the ride!
Speaking of Times Changing
Did you notice that we have re-arranged the posting schedule? One more post was added to our daily schedule for a total of at least eight posts every day of great cheap reads. You just aren’t going to find anything like us anywhere else on the web. Our post times are all Central US time (Chicago) with the first one at 6:00am and new post every two hours through 8:00pm. We’ll post free books that meet our standards as we learn about them.
A Note for the Weekend
The United States will celebrate Memorial Day this weekend – the unofficial start of summer. Our nation has been battered by natural disasters, seemingly one after another. We are praying for the many people across our nation who have lost family, friends, homes, possessions, health and security. May your strength and hope be restored.
Books by the Millionaire Author
Amanda Hocking still has many of her books available for 99 cents for the first book in the series and $2.99 for the next books in the series. Below are some of her most popular books, all great, cheap reads. The Trylle Trilogy is a young adult paranormal romance with mild language and mild sexual situations recommended for ages thirteen and up.

Switched (Trylle Trilogy, Book 1): (99 cents) When Wendy Everly was six years old, her mother was convinced she was a monster and tried to kill her. It isn’t until eleven years later that Wendy discovers her mother might have been right. With the help of Finn Holmes, Wendy finds herself in a world she never knew existed – a world both beautiful and frightening, and Wendy’s not sure she wants to be a part of it.
Torn (Trylle Trilogy, Book 2): ($2.99) Wendy thought she finally understood who she was and what she wanted, but everything changes when the rival Vittra come after her. She’s caught between two worlds, torn between love and duty, and she must decide what life she is going to lead.
Ascend (Trylle Trilogy, #3) : ($2.99) With a war looming on the horizon, Wendy’s fate seems sealed. But everything she sacrificed might be in vain if she can’t save the ones she loves. Her whole life has been leading up to this, and it’s all coming to an end.

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