Archives for: September 2011
Housekeeping: The new Kindle options, a poll, and cheap reads 6 comments

Fire and all the new Kindles
Yesterday was an exciting day for Kindle users – the goodies from Amazon just kept coming. Price reductions, better devices with several highly desired features, and the
long anticipated tablet. Here’s a brief recap of the new Kindles now available or coming soon:
Kindle Fire ($199) Wi-Fi only tablet available to U.S. customers only, backlit, pre-order with deliveries beginning November 15. Great for children’s books.
 
Kindle Touch 3G + WiFi($149 w/ Special Offers; $189 w/out Special Offers) 3G Works globally, U.S. customers only, most-advanced E-Ink display, lighter and overall smaller than previous Kindles, holds 3,000 books, tap pages to seamlessly turn pages, and much more. Pre-order with deliveries beginning November 21.
 
Kindle Touch Wi-Fi ($99 w/ Special Offers; $139 w/out Special Offers) Available to U.S. customers only, most-advanced E-Ink display, lighter and overall smaller than previous Kindles, holds 3,000 books, and much more. Pre-order with deliveries beginning November 21.
 
Kindle Wi-Fi ($79 w/ Special Offers; $109 w/out Special Offers) Available now and to all customers, 30% lighter and 18% smaller than previous Kindles, most-advanced E-Ink display, holds 1,400 books and easy to use. Great Kindle for older children and the casual reader.
 
Kindle Keyboard Wi-Fi ($99 w/ Special Offers; $139 w/out Special Offers) Formerly known as the Kindle 3 – same Kindle as before now with a lower price.
 
Kindle Keyboard 3G + Wi-Fi ($139 w/ Special Offers; $189 w/out Special Offers) Formerly known as the Kindle 3 3G.
 
Vote in the poll below of what you will be purchasing of the new Kindle options. You can vote for more than one device.  

 
The Cinderella Obsession – Lost in the announcements
The 10:00a.m. post yesterday was a romance by Opal Carew, writing as Amber Carew. The Cinderella Obsession is a contemporary romance and the price has been reduced to $2.99 for a limited time – especially for the feature on DailyCheapReads. With all the announcements yesterday, this wonderful book may have gotten lost. I’m reposting here for anyone who missed it.
The Cinderella Obsession: Vanessa always wanted to be Cinderella. Taking the opportunity to attend a lavish masquerade ball-even if she wasn’t invited-was just too delightful an opportunity to resist. When Nicholas Powers dragged her into his arms for the most explosive kiss she ever experienced, she floated on cloud nine. It is a fantasy night she’ll never forget, especially when she winds up working for Nick as a temp.
Nick had never felt such fiery passion as he did when he held the dazzling beauty in his arms. He swears to find her and make her his. Why, then, does his little spark of a secretary make his pulse quicken? Buy the book for $2.99 for a limited time only.
 
Short stories  
This price is too good to miss. To Cut a Long Story Short is a collection of Jeffrey Archer short stories and is selling for only 99 cents today. From the master storyteller comes a masterful collection of fourteen riveting tales of elaborate confidence tricks, political chicanery, immoral behavior, and dangerously illicit affairs. Fourteen stories, 416 traditional print pages.
 

 
Twenty-five Agatha Christie short stories are now available for immediate download to your Kindle and are only 99 cents each.

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Book Review: A Most Unsuitable Match 0 comments

Stephanie Grace Whitson is my new favorite author. Not that she is new, but I’ve just discovered her. I chose to read A Most Unsuitable Match because this historical novel is set on the Missouri River. (My hometown even got a shout out!)
Fannie Rousseau has grown up in the sheltered comfort of her wealthy parents’ home in St. Charles, Mo. After her mother’s death, Fannie sorts through papers and finds letters from an aunt she never knew existed. She and her maid take a steamboat to Fort Benton, Montana, the location of the last letter posted by Aunt Edith.
On the river, Fannie encounters tragedy, but also the friendship of Samuel Beck, who has escaped his abusive father and is looking for his runaway sister.
Samuel and his new companion, a former slave, watch out for Fannie when they make it Fort Benton. In this rough frontier settlement, Fannie sets to find her aunt and discovers herself and love in the process. It’s this second half of the book that is the most interesting.
I enjoyed the swift-moving story that had some predictable points but also several surprises. There was an inordinate amount of fainting, but otherwise an entertaining historical.
I received a copy of A Most Unsuitable Match through Bethany House’s book review program. It is selling for $9.22 in the Kindle store.
In addition, I read Whitson’s Sixteen Brides which was offered free on Kindle this summer.
This is most unusual twist on the “prairie romance.” Each of the brides had a secret to hide and it wasn’t easy to predict who the brides would end up marrying. It is now $8.54.

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Housekeeping: Inspiring reads, mistake correction, and cheap reads 1 comment

Inspiring Reads
I had been feeling a bit down lately. That must have been why I picked out a couple of non-fiction books, which are not my normal fare.
Heaven Is for Real is a best-seller and a cheap read at $4.98. Small-town pastor Todd Burpo writes about his family’s ordeal as their 3-year-old son was deathly ill. A few months after his recovery, Colton started talking about his trip to heaven. I appreciated Burpo sharing his skepticism at first, as well as some of the humorous insights of a child describing the afterlife. As a children’s Sunday School teacher, this book was instructive. As a pilgrim with an eye toward home, it was an invaluable gift.
 
Written by Michael Hingson, Thunder Dog describes how he and his guide dog escaped the World Trade Center on September 11. The account was interspersed with Hingson’s reflections on his experiences growing up in a sighted world. The description of the fire and destruction of 9/11 are vivid but not disturbing. This would be an appropriate read for someone as young as middle school or someone who needs motivation or inspiration. The book is selling today for $7.99. 
If you have read an inspiring book, please leave a comment about the book on this post. 
Once in a while, I goof. . .  
That’s not news, but this time I’m confessing to it. Earlier this month I posted a book review by Mark, a site user who had read Stone in a Sling by Scott A. Meehan. The book is a non-fiction autobiography of Major (Ret.) Meehan’s life as a missionary kid through marriage and family and his service around the world in the United States military. I mis-categorized the book as fiction and corrected the category recently. You can read the review and purchase the book for $2.99 today.
 
Reminding you of a few cheap reads
Yesterday we featured eighteen 99 cent books. Scroll back through the posts. You are sure to find a couple of books to read during the rainy, cooler weekends and evenings this fall. Here’s another cheap read. Libby Fischer Hellmann’s Toxicity is only 99 cents today. A dark police procedural and thriller, this book is a prequel to the Georgia Davis PI series – Easy Innocence ($2.99) and Doubleback (99 cents).
 
Toll-Gate: by Georgette Heyer can still be pre-ordered for $1.99 with delivery October 1. Captain John Staple, back from the battlefront, is already bored with his quiet civilian life in the country. When he stumbles upon a mystery involving a disappearing toll-gate keeper, nothing could keep the adventure-loving captain from investigating. But winning her will be his greatest yet…
 
  
More than twenty of Georgette Heyer’s books are still priced at $1.99, including seven of her mysteries. I’m continuing to read Unfinished Clue ($1.99) and have come to totally dislike the pompous man who meets a deadly fate. The cast of characters in this whodunit is an entertaining lot and every one of them has a reason to snuff out the nasty man.
You can page through all of Georgette Heyer’s books here, including the mysteries. The $1.99 books are on all four pages.

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Housekeeping – Updated E-Books, Amazon and Hearst, and Cheap Reads 0 comments

A print book just doesn’t offer this
In your reading experiences, you have probably encountered the dreaded punctuation error, misuse of a word or typographical misstep. With the rise of e-readers utilizing different and complex file structures, formatting errors detract from the reading experience.
Unique to electronic publishing, the purchaser may be given the opportunity to receive a corrected version of electronic books at no additional cost.
Last week I received three opportunities to replace e-books with errors. Two of the books were independently published; one was from a traditional publisher. Below is the body of an e-mail I received:

We’re writing about your past Kindle purchase of Book by Author Author. The version you received had typos and formatting that have been corrected.

An updated version of Book (ASIN:Bxxxxxx) is now available. It’s important to note that when we send you the updated version, you will no longer be able to view any highlights, bookmarks, and notes made in your current version and your furthest reading location will be lost.

If you wish to receive the updated version, please reply to this email with the word “Yes” in the first line of your response. Within 2 hours of receiving the e-mail any device that has the title currently downloaded will be updated automatically if the wireless is on.

I rarely highlight, bookmark, or make notes so I replied to accept the revised editions. The choice is always yours.
 
Amazon announces an expanded relationship with Hearst Publications
Tuesday Amazon issued a press release stating that Amazon and Hearst Publications had entered into an “an expanded, multi-faceted consumer marketing, e-commerce and content relationship.” The business agreement will make Amazon the largest third-party seller of Hearst’s magazines via digital channels.
Hearst is one of the world’s largest magazine publisher. Because the Kindle does not have color, it does not present magazines well. When the Amazon tablet becomes available, magazine viewing will be optimized. A large inventory of magazine subscription offerings is crucial to capture the market.
Amazon is preparing for the tablet release. . . .
 
The Spellman Files
Lisa sent a note to let us know that the first book in the Izzy Spellman series is selling for only $1.99 – a very rare price reduction. Click here to see the post about the Spellman Files series by Lisa Lutz. Enjoy a fun read about a female PI and her adventures.
 
Are you in the mood for a romance read? Every book below is selling for 99 cents each.
 

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Book Review: Easton Hearts: The Complete Series, Western historical romantic suspense by Anna Murray 0 comments

Easton Hearts: The Complete Series by Anna Murray is the bundle of her three historical suspenseful romances – Unbroken Hearts, Untamed Hearts and Undaunted Hearts. The author identifies the series as telling the unique tale of how Cal and Roy Easton built a family amidst the hardships of post-Civil War Montana.
 
Unbroken Hearts introduces the Easton brothers, two men ranching in the lawless west. Roy rescues orphaned Sarah and her younger sister Emily from an unsavory situation and takes the two home. While caring for the disabled mother of the Easton brothers, a romance blooms between Sarah and Cal, all the while they fight off violent men intending to take the ranch from the Eastons. I was a bit put-off by the violence at the beginning of the book, but the story soon finds its footing and continues through to the happily-ever-after.
 
Untamed Hearts is Roy’s story, now an outcast and rootless in the Montana Territory. He meets Margaret, an Eastern woman who needs his help finding her brother. She’s not entirely honest with Roy and he must save the day more than once. The mystery is a unique twist that I was not expecting in a Western romance. The tension between Roy and Margaret is the best developed of the series.
 
Undaunted Hearts is a shorter novel of a grown-up Emily and Luke, a man searching for his brother in the wild west. The story seemed a bit rushed, but still included suspenseful action. Two distant (and a bit odd) relatives are introduced late in the book. Perhaps they will have their own stories in upcoming releases.
 
The action keeps you reading, the formatting is excellent, and the plots are more than the usual Western romance fare. As for romance, these would be considered spicy. I purchased the books individually as they were released. You can purchase all three books in one e-book file today for only $5.95 – that’s like getting one free over the individual price.
Click here to purchase Easton Hearts: The Complete Series

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Housekeeping – Kindle Daily Deal, Game Sale, and Cheap Classics 4 comments

Kindle Daily Deal
The Kindle Daily Deal has been a popular feature and we will include the book on our site each day. You responded to a poll we posted Sunday through Wednesday, voting where you wanted the daily announcement to be placed on the site. Overwhelmingly you voted to see the Kindle Daily Deal where it is now – the first post on the site.
Updates of the current selection are made around 5:30 Central time each day. If you arrive at the site before that, click on the Kindle Daily Deal banner and you will link to the book that is available at that time. If an announcement needs to be made, I will place it on the KDD post.
Has the Daily Deal featured any books on your wish list?
 
A couple of Kindle notes
1. When you are in the Kindle Store browsing for books, Amazon provides a sort by feature. Among the choices are price low to high, price high to low, and publication date. Until a few days ago, the choice of bestselling was available. It has been replaced with popularity. This may be because of the many free books that are offered on the Kindle. Will the New York Times change their list to The Most Popular Books?
2. The Kindle with Special Offers is no longer the bestselling Kindle. According to Amazon’s popularity rankings, the Kindle 3 with 3G and wi-fi is once again their top selling e-reader.
 
99 Cent game sale ends September 12
Twelve games are selling at the reduced price of only 99 cents. The sale ends on Monday, September 12.
Have you purchased a new game? Leave a comment to tell us which one(s) and your impressions of the games.
 
Classics featured on the jr. edition
This past week on the jr. edition of DailyCheapReads we have been featuring classic books selling for wonderful prices – less than $2. Here are a few of the books, selling today for $1.99 each.
 

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Book Review: Stone in a Sling; Reviewed by Mark 1 comment

Mark sent a note recommending Stone in a Sling by Scott A. Meehan. I asked for hs impression of the book and he provided this review.
Mark is a doctoral student at Capella University and a big reader of both technical and fiction–keen on using this website every day looking for good deals.
  
I found the book to be a coming-of-age book outlining a unique story of one young man’s journey well into adulthood. The author develops the story with a series of vignettes that span his life as a youngster in Baltimore, a “missionary kid” in Columbia to the present where he was a retired veteran returning to worn-torn Iraq.
The story is filled with emotional and spiritual revelation, as Scott becomes a man in his own way from marriage, college, and through an interesting military career outlining the sacrifices made and the places visited. As a military member from the 80s, I could relate to his journey and the difficulties transient military life brings. Scott focuses in the aspect of particular deeds from a serviceman’s standpoint in Iraq that are important for the story.
Overall, the book is worth the $2.99. It is a “male” read especially with the title and by-line being miltary-based.
Click here to purchase Stone in a Sling

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Top Four Summer Reads – Tim Roux 0 comments

Tim Roux is the author of ten novels, including the crime / gangster novel The Dance of the Pheasodile (99 cents) that introduced the word ‘Pheasodile’ to the English language, and the fantasy thriller Missio (99 cents). He is also the Managing Editor of Night Publishing and a regular subscriber to the online international writers’ magazine, SpeakWithoutInterruption.
 
Ragnar the Murderer: (99 cents) Lily Byrne is the name the wonderfully smart writer Catherine Chisnall uses for her fun Romances, and I think she got it absolutely spot on with ‘Ragnar’ – the first of a series. It is beautifully written, wry, exciting and a little bit spicy. Can’t wait for the next one!
Book description: It is a time of uneasy truce, of two races living side-by-side, inter-marrying even, but forever on the look out for treachery among their neighbors. They meet, they bathe together and they consort. Life is short, fun is likely to be brief, and opportunity has to be seized wherever it can be found without unleashing long-held rivalries and carnage. Then the youthful Dane, Ragnar, falls in love with Aelfwyn the Angle who is already promised by duty to one of her own village. Ragnar and Aelfwyn’s passionate love affair is a secret which will never be hidden for long, but theirs is not the only secret around.
 

The Bringer: (99 cents) Despite all appearances, this is really high voltage Romance with tons of love and other emotions poured in, and some very surprising (but credible) twists. If you want to wallow in something warm and satisfying, this is for you. Written by Samantha Towle.
BiteMarks: (99 cents) This is a cop murder mystery thriller with lots of bite in all senses. Really electric stuff. It actually has nothing to do with the supernatural and everything to do with a roller-coaster ride of a great read, with a sequel to come. Written by Drew Cross.
New Beginnings: (99 cents) Another classic Romance of the girl who falls madly in love with a man who is firstly unobtainable because he is very happily married, and then unobtainable because he is grieving. How do you chat up a man under such sensitive circumstances without appearing exploitative and predatory? Johanna Nield handles this tale with great sensitivity herself and a speedy, charming style.

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Book Review: The Convenient Marriage by Georgette Heyer – $1.99 0 comments

A charming Georgian romance, The Convenient Marriage is the story of a less-than-perfect, very young heroine who marries the older Earl of Rule to free her sister to marry the man the sister loves.
Horatia, who stutters and stammers, naïvely falls in love with card games and gambling. Longing for a victory over a man known for his gaming skill, she finds herself in a spot of trouble with the very man her husband has instructed her to avoid.
She seeks the help of her brother and his friend to rescue her from her foolishness. The end result could be described as the Georgian equivalent of fraternity brothers with good intentions, but not much forethought. They try their best, but fail miserably in one humorous escapade after another.
The Earl has always been a step ahead of his young, naïve, but utterly charming wife. He is the picture of the strong, silent type, who won his bride’s heart by being her quiet hero. A delightful story with well-drawn characters and attention to detail, the romance is still available for only $1.99.
More than 20 of Ms. Heyer’s romances, mysteries and historical fiction novels are still selling for $1.99 or less still today. All of Ms. Heyer’s books at all prices are included in this link.

Click here to purchase The Convenient Marriage

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Book Review: Watch Your Back – Short Story Anthology by James Scott Bell 0 comments

If you are going to participate in crime or infidelity, you need to watch your back. Revenge is a very powerful force. That’s the common theme in this anthology by James Scott Bell.
 
Mr. Bell is known for his Christian fiction legal thrillers, such as Sins of the Fathers ($9.99) and Presumed Guilty ($9.99). After reading and enjoying Deadlock ($9.99), I was glad to see this novella and three short story collection by Mr. Bell selling for only $2.99.
 
The title novella is the story of a young man who had an opportunity for redemption and avoiding crime, but his lustful desires took him down the wrong road.
And those promises of fulling his desires? Not only were they hollow, but everything and everyone seemed to be working against him at the same time. The action was suspenseful and I wondered if anyone in the story told the truth.
 
Fore Play is the story of a very accomplished golfer who was unfaithful to his wife. The ending was different (so far) than any news articles you may have read concerning a real life well-accomplished golfer. Rage Road caused me to stop and think about what could happen on the highway when an angry person has a gun.
 
My favorite of the collection was Heed the Wife. A marvelous, ingenious twist that I didn’t see coming. If you are a word geek like me, you will enjoy the story.
 
With a bit of something for everyone in this book without being preachy, there were a few references to Christian values and scripture. Watch Your Back is a great read for $2.99 and won’t scare you at all. Unless you participate in crime or infidelity. Then you need to watch your back. Revenge is a very powerful force.

Click here to purchase Watch Your Back

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