There’s a special tradition in May that happens all around the world. (Or at least, in America, England, Canada…) The first Saturday in May is always “Free Comic Book Day,” where you can walk into any comic book store and receive free comic books as a thank-you from their publishers. This year, the event has come to the Kindle Store — and it seems to be continuing through the whole month of May. And I’ve also discovered a great way to get free Marvel comic books on your Kindle Fire as well as comic books from D.C.!
I’m a big fan of “Free Comic Book” day. It’s exciting to see big crowds descend on your local comic book store, and some stores even feature greeters who are dressed up in superhero costumes. The stores get some support, the fans get a special treat, and it’s nice to see parents introducing their children to a fun new medium. Plus, I get free comic books — and this year I discovered that two of those same titles are also being distributed for the Kindle Fire in Amazon’s Kindle Store!
Point your browser to tinyurl.com/FreeKindleComicBooks for a list of Amazon’s best-selling comic books — and then click on the “Free” tab for these great free comic books…
Superman: Last Son of Krypton #1 — Special Edition
The first chapter of a new graphic novel written by Richard Donner and Geoff Johns (illustrated by Adam Kubert)
D.C. Nation: Beware the Batman / Teen Titans Go! #1
Amazon’s description calls this a “super sampler…the perfect place to check out two sensational series, Beware The Batman and Teen Titans Go,” which are coming to the Cartoon Network on Saturday mornings.
In addition, you can also still download a free issue of Superman by John Byrne (which finds the man of steel fighting a deadly kryptonite-enhanced robot!) at tinyurl.com/SupermanOne. And remember D.C. Comics is also releasing a regular free comic book that includes samples from their whole “universe” of characters, called D.C. Comic Digital Sneak Peeks. But where are the rest of the comic books from Free Comic Book Day? And what if you prefer Spider-Man — or The Avengers, or Captain America, or even the X-Men?
Amazon doesn’t have a deal with their publisher, Marvel comics — but I’ve still found a way to read Marvel Comics on my Kindle Fire…and to find a bigger selection of titles from Free Comic Book Day. The “secret sauce” is an app that’s called ComiXology, which is available in Amazon’s Kindle Store. Once downloaded, you can shop for comic books — including Marvel titles. And there’s even a nice selection of free comic books, including digital editions of these “Free Comic Book Day” titles.
The Steam Engines of Oz
Worlds of Aspen
Buck Rogers: 25th Century A.D.
Molly Danger /Princeless
NFL Rush Zone:
There’s also free issues of two 2012 comic books — Avengers Prime (Volume 1, #1), which features Iron Man, Thor, and Captain America, plus Secret Avengers #16, featuring the Black Widow, Captain America, and The Beast. Also free is Marvel’s official comic book prequel to their 2011 movie, Captain America: The First Avenger, and a 2012 issue of Uncanny XMen #10. But my favorite comic is probably the stunning free issue of The Amazing Spider-Man from 2001, which pays tribute to the firefighters who died in the 9/11 attacks. (It’s written and illustrated by some of the biggest names at Marvel Comics — J. Michael Straczynski, John Romita Jr. and Scott Hanna.)
And there’s a wide variety of other free titles available in the Comixology app for Kindle Fire. (Where else could you find Battlestar Galactica with The Best of the Three Stooges, Nancy Drew and the Clue Crew, and Garfield and Company?) But best of all, they’ve got a really nice interface for their comic books which may even be better than downloading the comics straight to your Kindle Fire. For comparison, Amazon lets you tap on a panel of a comic book to increase its size — once — but the Comixology app lets you “pinch and expand” the panels to whatever size you want.
Free Comic Book Day was started to “introduce everyone to the joys of reading comics”, according to its page on Wikipedia. But if you missed it when it was happening on the first Saturday in May, you can still join in on the fun with your Kindle Fire!