Amazon’s Amazing Deal: a Free FireTV Stick?!

FireTV discount on Amazon

Amazon’s FireTV boxes cost $99 — but the same functions are now available for just $39 in Amazon’s new FireTV Stick. But they’ll give you one for free if you sign up for the $20-a-month “SlingTV” service. Frankly, I’m amazed at how low its price has dropped.

Check out Amazon’s cheap FireTV prices at
tinyurl.com/FireTV39

When it was first released last year, Amazon was selling the “box” version of Fire TV for $99, so it already feels like Amazon is offering a massive 60% discount with their FireTV sticks. Maybe Amazon’s calculated how many digital videos you’ll rent from Amazon once you’ve purchased a FireTV stick. And the SlingTV service feels like getting a basic cable TV package at a much cheaper price. I just told my girlfriend — she loves the Food Network — and it’s part of the SlingTV package (along with the Disney Channel, ESPN, TNT, and Adult Swim.)

So why is the FireTV stick so cheap? And ultimately, what’s the difference between FireTV and and the FireTV stick? Fortunately there’s a helpful chart on Amazon, but it makes the two FireTV products look nearly identical. The stick version of FireTV is wireless only — you can’t use a cable to connect it, even if you want to. And the stick also only offers Dolby Digital Plus sound (and not the fancier “5.1 surround sound”).

Both devices can also run games and apps on your big-screen digital TV — though fewer of them will be comptaible with the stick version of FireTV. And there’s also a service for children called “Amazon FreeTime” which is only available on the larger FireTV box. FreeTime gives you a library of child-friendly videos for which you pay a small monthly subscription fee. It’s optional for the FireTV boxes — but the optional service isn’t available if you’re only using a FireTV stick.

I think we’re the winners in a price war between Amazon and the other digital media companies. They’re lowering their prices to attract customers to Amazon’s own streaming media service. “18 times more apps and games than Apple TV,” reads a new ad that just appeared on the front page of Amazon.

They’re anxious for you to try FireTV — and now they’re making it as cheap as they possibly can!

Check out Amazon’s cheap FireTV prices at
tinyurl.com/FireTV39

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Amazon Discounts eBooks for March!

The Girl With No Name book coverRants by Dennis Miller

The Three Pigs by David Wiesner

Every month Amazon chooses over 100 Kindle ebooks to sell at a special discounted price. It’s their “$3.99 or less” sale, and my favorite part of each new month is browsing through the selection to see what’s on sale! There’s discounted ebooks in just above every category, from science fiction to biographies — and there’s even some great non-fiction books.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

Here’s some of the most interesting selections…


Rants by Dennis Miller

The Rants by Dennis Miller ($1.99)

You may remember him as Saturday Night Live’s “Weekend Update” news anchor, or from his mid-’90s talk show. But he collected together his trademark jokes and insights into a laugh-out-loud collection which ultimately made him a best-selling author, according to the book’s description at Amazon. “The New York Times called Dennis Miller’s Rants ‘a pleasing mix of profanity and wit…that will make fans of his irreverent liberal angst laugh out loud.” And one Amazon reviewer wrote simply that Dennis Miller is one of the five funniest comedians in the world, adding that his rants are among some of the most original stuff to come around in a long time.”


The Girl With No Name book cover

The Girl With No Name: The Incredible Story of a Child Raised by Monkeys ($1.99)

Wait, what? Wow. Just wow…. I can’t even imagine! It’s a true story. In the mountains of South America, back in 1954, a 4-year-old girl was abandoned in the jungles of Colombia, according to this ebook’s description on Amazon. “[H]alf-drugged, terrified, and starving, she came upon a troop of capuchin monkeys. Acting entirely on instinct, she tried to do what they did: she ate what they ate and copied their actions, and little by little, learned to fend for herself.” And so begins the story of her next five years, lived entirely within a family of monkeys. It sounds like an incredible story, and Amazon promises that “this rousing story… will astonish readers everywhere.”


The Three Pigs by David Wiesner

The Three Pigs by David Wiesner ($1.99)

It’s a Caldecott Medal-winning children’s book with a story so mind-boggling that even I had to buy it! A big wolf huffs and puffs a little pig right out of his house — and out of the frame of the illustration. “Come on — it’s safe out here,” he tells the other pigs, who also escape from the other pictures of the story. “We got away from that wolf for good.” Then they frolic in an impossible neverland of pure imagination, which Amazon describes as “a dazzling fantasy universe” — which leads to a wonderful and surprising happy ending.

Smart Women Finish Rich by David Bach

Smart Women Finish Rich by David Bach ($1.99)

It’s a seven-step program that can provide a huge payoff, according to this ebook’s description on Amazon. “David Bach is a financial genius with a passion for helping women get rich,” reads a testimonial by finance writer Laurie Beth Jones. “Read this book–and prosper! And another best-selling author added “Finally, a book for women that talks about money in a way that makes sense. David Bach is not just an expert in managing money — he’s the ultimate motivational coach for women. I can’t recommend this book enough!”


Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

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Amazon Announces One-Day Tablet Sale!

Amazon Thank You Sale on Fire Tablets

It’s like a “flash sale”. Until midnight, Amazon’s discounting all of their Kindle Fire tablets by 15%. It’s a special one-day sale to celebrate Amazon’s first-place finish in a new survey about customer satisfaction. “To say thank you, we’re taking 15% off all Fire tablets,” reads an announcement on Amazon’s front page today.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s promotion, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/AmazonThanksYou

That front-page announcement leads to a grid showing Amazon’s Fire tablets — each with its old price crossed out, and a lower price printed in bright orange numbers. The Fire HD6 tablet is now just $84, and the larger Fire HD7 is just $118. (Today only!) And while normally the massive 8.9-inch Fire HDX would cost $379, it’s just $322 until midnight.

Even the kids edition of the Fire HD has been discounted. Normally it costs $149, but today Amazon’s reduced its price to just $126. “If you’ve been waiting, today might be a very good day to buy a Fire tablet from Amazon,” wrote my friend Len Edgerly on his “Kindle Chronicles” blog. “This display of corporate gratitude was triggered by an impressive performance by Amazon in the 2014 American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) rankings released last week…”

Amazon Thank You Sale on Fire Tablets

It’s a big triumph, because general satisfaction is down among all shoppers, according to the results of the study. But Amazon achieved a score of 86 in the survey — the highest of any retailer. Amazon actually scored an 88 last year, but even this two-point drop still leaves them at the top. NetFlix came in second — tied with Newegg (an online retailer of computer hardware and software) — but both Amazon’s competitors only achieved a score of 81.

Amazon’s always been very aggressive about pleasing their customers, Len Edgerly points out — and this survey suggests that it’s working. A lot of Amazon’s customers are now officially reporting that they’ve enjoyed their shopping experiences. And it’s nice that Amazon’s acknowledging that in a way which is actually meaningful to shoppers.

“To say thank you, we’re taking 15% off all Fire tablets…”

For a shortcut to Amazon’s promotion, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/AmazonThanksYou

Amazon Thank You Sale on Fire Tablets

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Amazon Discounts Their Kindles for Valentine’s Day!

Amazon Discounts Their Kindles for Valentine's Day

You can now buy a Kindle for just $59 — a special deal celebrating Valentine’s Day. That’s a 25% discount, and Amazon’s even offering to spread that out over five payments of just $11.80 each! But there’s also big discounts on Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD6 tablets, as well as their newest Kindle Paperwhite!

For a shortcut, just point your web browser to
tinyurl.com/AmazonFebruary14

Amazon’s reduced the price of their Fire HD6 to just $84. Described as “the most powerful tablet under $100,” it comes with both front and rear-facing cameras (and a speedy quad-core processor). Weighing in at just over 10 ounces, it still offers a high-resolution screen with a very high pixel count (252 pixels per inch!) And there’s also a special edition for children with a tougher screen (and parental controls) which Amazon is now also offering with a special Valentine’s Day discount.

Amazon Kindle Fire HD6 sale

But don’t forget the Kindle Paperwhite! It’s Amazon’s newest touch-screen Kindle which Amazon claims is like reading on paper. (“No annoying glare, even in bright sunlight!”) Its low power consumption lets you read for a half an hour each day without needing a recharge until the end of the month — and its screen also has the ability to glow softly (for reading in the dark). The Kindle Paperwhite weighs just 7.3 ounces, and its “sleek” design makes it the perfect gift for Valentine’s Day. And Amazon’s now lowering its price to just $99!

Kindle Paperwhite discount

I couldn’t find Amazon’s “terms and conditions” for these offers, but they are warning that it’s a “Limited Time” discount. Presumably these are Valentine’s Day specials, so the low prices should last through midnight on Saturday. If you order by Friday — and pay for overnight shipping — you could have a nice geeky gift for your significant other on Valentine’s Day.

But with prices like these, it’s also a great time to do some shopping for yourself!


Remember, for a shortcut, just point your web browser to
tinyurl.com/AmazonFebruary14

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Amazon Offers Free Philip K. Dick Stories!

Total Recall book cover by Philip K DickA Scanner Darkly book cover by Philip K DickValis book cover by Philip K DickUbik book cover by Philip K Dick

There’s seven free science fiction stories by Philip K. Dick that are now available in Amazon’s Kindle Store. (Many of the famous author’s earliest short stories have fallen into the public domain.) And Amazon’s also discounting the Kindle version of several of his full-length novels to just $2.99!


For a shortcut to Amazon’s Philip K. Dick stories, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/DickeBooks

 
The six seven free short stories are:

        The Crystal Crypt
        Piper in the Woods
        Beyond Lies the Wub
        Mr. Spaceship
        The Variable Man
        Beyond the Door
        The Skull

 
Two more ebooks are available for just 99 cents — the author’s 93-page novel Second Variety, and a special 364-page collection of 13 of the author’s best stories. And the Kindle Store is also offering big discounts on eight more Philip K. Dick novels. 
 

        The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch ($2.99)
        A Scanner Darkly ($2.99)
        The Man in the High Castle ($2.99)
        Ubik ($2.99)
        VALIS (Book 1 of the VALIS Trilogy) ($2.99)
        Time Pawn ($2.99)
        Total Recall ($3.99)
        The Father Thing ($3.99)

 
Most of these ebooks can be synced with their audiobook version, for a futuristic reading experience. While reading the text of an ebook, you can instantly switch over to its audiobook version on your Kindle tablet smartphone – and the audiobook’s narrator will continue reading right where you left off! And Amazon’s offering a special “Read and Listen” deal for three of the ebooks. You can purchase their audiobook and Kindle editions together for just $8!

 
        The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch
        A Scanner Darkly
        The Man in the High Castle

 
But best of all, there’s 26 Philip K Dick novels that are all being made available free for subscribers to Amazon’s “Kindle Unlimited” program!
 
        Total Recall
        The Man in the High Castle
        Ubik
        Now Wait for Last Year
        The Simulacra
        Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said
        Time Out of Joint
        The Penultimate Truth
        Martian Time-Slip
        Eye in the Sky
        The Game-Players of Titan
        A Maze of Death
        Dr. Bloodmoney
        The Crack in Space
        The Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch
        A Scanner Darkly
        VALIS (Book 1 of the VALIS Trilogy)
        The Transmigration of Timothy Archer (Book 3 of the VALIS Trilogy)
        Galactic Pot-Healer
        Gather Yourselves Together
        Confessions of a Crap Artist
        We Can Build You
        The World Jones Made
        The Cosmic Puppets
        Dr. Futurity
        Selected Stories of Philip K. Dick

Amazon’s just released the pilot for an original TV series based on “The Man in The High Castle”. (Offering an “alternate timeline” where the Nazi’s won World War II, it presents a world filled with spies and imposters and raises questions about both authenticity and history itself.) Its executive producer is Ridley Scott, who first popularized the author to mainstream audiences with his 1982 film Blade Runner. It’s nice to see that the author’s stories are also being giving careful attention, and that they’ll survive humanity’s ongoing movement towards digital reading formats.

I want to believe there are people at Amazon who appreciate Philip K. Dick just as much as we do.


Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s Philip K. Dick ebooks, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/DickeBooks

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January’s Kindle eBook Discounts!

900 Miles - a Zombie Novel by S Johnathan DavisThe Heart of Everything That Is - The Untold Story of Red Cloud, An American Legend

Regarding Ducks and Universes - science fiction book coverMoonshine - a Cultural History of Hooch

Every month Amazon picks a special selection of Kindle ebooks to sell for $3.99 or less. And this month has some fascinating books to expand your mind with both history and science fiction. But Amazon’s discounted over 100 different Kindle ebooks to just $3.99 or less, so there’s lots of bargains to choosse from.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

Here’s some of the most interesting selections…


Moonshine - a Cultural History of Hooch

Moonshine: A Cultural History of America’s Infamous Liquor by Jaime Joyce ($2.99)

It’s a $25 history of moonshine – now discounted in Amazon’s Kindle store to just $2.99! “Hooch. White lightning. White whiskey. Mountain dew…” begins the book’s description at Amazon — promising “Nothing but clear, 100-proof American history.” The underground infamy of backwoods booze is an all-American tradition that dates back several centuries. But this book dips into the facts and the folklore behind untaxed liquors and unlicensed stills, whether brewed up by mountain people or the “craft distilling” that’s still being practiced today!


Regarding Ducks and Universes - science fiction book cover

Regarding Ducks and Universes by Neve Maslakovic ($1.99)

It’s an awesome title, and this science fiction book lives up to its promise. “On a foggy Monday in 1986, the universe suddenly, without warning, bifurcated,” explains a description on Amazon. 35 years later, a food writer in “San Francisco of Universe A” discovers a photograph showing himself with his father, dated 10 days before the writer was actually born! Of course there’s only one thing to do — head to “San Francisco B”, flagrantly violating the rules of both worlds, and spying on his other self. But it turns out that someone knows he’s changed universes, and the answer to all these provokative mysteries lies, impossibly, in a rubber duck…


The Heart of Everything That Is - The Untold Story of Red Cloud, An American Legend

The Heart of Everything That Is: The Untold Story of Red Cloud, An American Legend by Bob Drury ($1.99)

The Lakota warrior chief was nearly 90 years old when he died in Pine Ridge, South Dakota, having served as chief for 41 years from 1868 until 1909. But his fascinating life included an 1875 visit to Washington D.C., according to Wikipedia, where he attempted to persuade President grant “to honor existing treaties and stem the flow of miners into their lands.” This 2013 biography was chosen as the best book of the year by Salon magazine, and it also became a New York TImes best-seller. It’s the story of of the only American Indian in history to defeat the U.S. Army in a war, and one reviewer praised its beautiful handling of the historical material, calling it “epic…big, blazing history, writ large on the High Plains.”


900 Miles - a Zombie Novel by S Johnathan Davis

900 Miles: A Zombie Novel by S. Johnathan Davis ($0.99)

This book describes its hero’s “harrowing 900 mile race against time to get to his wife just as the dead begin to rise.” There’s no rules left in society, only one man bringing rumors of an underground stronghold, and so a New York businessman teams up with an ex-army pilot in an intense and fast-paced thriller. “Zombies are not the only things to fear in a DEAD world…our fellow Man is!” wrote one reviewer on Amazon — one of 145 people who awarded the novel five stars. It enjoyed 8 months as one of Amazon’s top 100 occult horror novels, and spent several weeks in the #1 spot on Amazon’s list new ebooks. And after finishing this frightening story, one reader even posted a review on Amazon that was titled “It’s settled – when the zombie apocalypse comes, I’m stealing a humvee….”

Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

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Amazon Discounts Every James Bond Kindle eBook!

James Bond montage

Today Amazon’s discounting every James Bond ebook in their Kindle Store.
Casino Royale, Goldfinger, Thunderball, and more — each of 14 original original James Bond novels — are all priced today at just $1.99! They’ve even discounted Ian Fleming’s final collection of Bond stories, published posthumously (which includes “The Living Daylights”).

For a shortcut to Amazon’s deal, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/JamesBondEbooks

It’s a special version of Amazon’s “Daily Deal”, where they highlight one set of books with a special price for just 24 hours. Amazon may be trying to catch the attention of book buyers who received their first Kindle for Christmas. It’s nice to see new audiences returning for the classic Cold War super spy. The first James Bond book was published more than 60 years ago — and it was 50 years ago the first James Bond movie was released!

But now the famous secret agent has found his way into the world of ebooks. In 2012 Amazon announced a 10-year license for the every one of Ian Fleming’s “James Bond” books for North America — both in print and as Kindle ebooks. “We believe that Amazon Publishing has the ability to place the books back at the heart of the Bond brand…” announced the managing director of Ian Fleming Publications, Ltd., praising Amazon for ” balancing traditional publishing routes with new technologies and new ways of reaching our readers.” They seemed intrigued by the reach of the Kindle, and the possibility that it could open up an entirely new market. “We are excited to be using the opportunity of this re-license to introduce Ian Fleming’s books to a broader audience in the USA.”

Amazon noted that the books have already sold more than 100 million copies — and that the James Bond series of films is “the world’s longest-running film franchise.” But more importantly, “We are devoted fans of Fleming’s Bond novels here at Amazon Publishing,” noted business development director Philip Patrick. In a statement, he said that Amazon’s book-publishing arm could offer famous authors “a new life for great backlist titles” (adding that Ian Fleming was “the perfect fit.”) So how does it feel to be keeping Ian Fleming’s books alive on one of Amazon’s own publishing imprints?

“We’re thrilled…”

Here’s a list of all the James Bond titles which will be available as Kindle ebooks.


Casino Royale (1953)
Live and Let Die (1954
Moonraker (1955)
Diamonds Are Forever (1956)
From Russia with Love (1957)
Dr. No (1958)
Goldfinger (1959)
For your Eyes Only (1960)
Thunderball (1961)
The Spy Who Loved Me (1962)
On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1963)
You Only Live Twice (1964)
The Man With The Golden Gun (1965)
Octopussy (1966)
The Living Daylights (1966)

In addition, Amazon’s also publishing two interesting non-fiction books written by Ian Fleming — The Diamond Smugglers, a true-crime story from 1957 analyzing the illegal trade in precious stones, plus Thrilling Cities, a 1963 collection of travel stories.

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Massive Kindle eBook Sale for Cyber Monday

Amazon Cyber Monday 2014 (front page)

Wow! Amazon’s discounting over 2,000 Kindle ebooks in a huge Cyber Monday sale. “The Biggest Kindle Book Deal of the Year,” reads a new headline on their front page. And it links to a massive selection of discounted Kindle ebooks in nearly a dozen different categories.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s ebook sale, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/AmazonCyberMonday2014

O’Reilly Books — another online bookseller — is offering their own massive new sale through Tuesday, December 2nd: 50% off on every ebook. They focus more on technology titles, but they’re very popular with tech-savvy shoppers. And their ebooks can be uploaded onto a Kindle (or synced with online cloud services like Dropbox or Drive). They’re boasting that their ebooks are DRM-free — so it’s another great place to shop for ebook bargains.

I see 2,034 different titles listed on sale at Amazon.com — and it’s fun to see which one became the #1 best-selling ebook for this Cyber Monday sale. Currently it’s Business Adventures: Twelve Classic Tales from the World of Wall Street by John Brooks, a contributor to The New Yorker. It was just published in 2014, so it’s a brand new book with a lot of “buzz” — but author Pat Conroy also land two of his novels on Amazon’s list of the best-selling ebooks for Cyber Monday. (Prince of Tides and The Great Santini.) And several other popular authors also have discounted ebooks on Amazon’s best-seller list today, including Michael Chabon, Carl Hiaasen, James Herriot.

Of course, Amazon is discounting more than ebooks today. There’s a separate web page for their other Cyber Monday Deals, which include and At one point they were selling Halo 4 (the popular videogame) for just $14.99 — and even if every copy gets “claimed,” there’s a wait list for more people who are also interested in the special price.

But even if you’re only interested in ebooks for your Kindle, today’s the one day of the year where they’ve discounted over 2,000 of them…

Amazon Cyber Monday 2014

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Amazon’s Big Thanksgiving/Black Friday Kindle Sale!

Amazon Black Friday Kindle sale

Amazon’s announced a special Black Friday sale on Kindles which is starting today! This morning Amazon began discounting all of their Kindle readers and color tablets, meaning you can now buy a Kindle for as low as $49. A banner on the front page of Amazon announces “Black Friday starts now!”

For a shortcut to all Amazon’s sales, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/ThanksgivingKindleSale

Amazon Black Friday Knidle sales

You can also buy Amazon’s color, high-definition tablet HD6 for just $79. That’s their smaller six-inch device, but even Amazon’s seven-inch HD7 tablets are on sale for just $109. (Normally they’re $139, so it’s a savings of over 20%.) And Amazon’s also discounted their glowing “Kindle Paperwhite” readers. Their newest black-and-white readers are now finally priced below one hundred dollars — at $99.

Those are the four deals featured on Amazon’s front page — but there’s one more deal if you click through on their link. Now you can get Amazon’s Fire Phone for just $199— a savings of over $250. It’s “unlocked”, meaning you can use it with any carrier now (instead of a mandatory contract with AT&T). And when you purchase your $199 phone, you’ll also get a full one-year membership in Amazon’s Prime service (which gets you free movies and TV shows, and even free Kindle ebooks!)

It’s a larger selection of deals than Amazon has ever offered before. (Although Amazon has traditionally started their Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving Day, instead of waiting for all the other discounts on Black Friday.) Some people are waiting in line right now to be the first through the door at the big “box” stores” for their limited-supply discounts on Black Friday.

But if you’re shopping for a Kindle, you can always just enjoy the holidays at home — and then order one online!

tinyurl.com/ThanksgivingKindleSale

Amazon Black Friday Starts Now

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Amazon Discounts their Kindle Fire HDX!

Kindle Fire HDX discount

Amazon’s just announced a big sale on their Kindle Fire HDX — a $20 discount! “Built for work and play” reads their headline, describing “the 7″ tablet with an with an ultra-fast quad-core processor, powerful graphics engine, world-class Dolby Audio, a perfect-color HDX display, and Mayday.” Now you can get a new one for just $179!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s special offer, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/HDXdiscount

It used to cost $50 more when it was first released, but even then its reviews were amazing. “Far better than an iPad,” wrote one reporter at ZDNet, adding “what Apple bought to market, Amazon has improved upon dramatically.” Even at $229, its price was much lower, but there were also more tangible benefits too. “Side-by-side, the display on the Kindle Fire HDX blows away that of the iPad.

“Not only do the colors look superior and more vivid, but also the brightness is better and the way blacks are handled – especially in video – is much more even…”

Of course, Amazon has even cheaper tablets. I’m amazed that a Fire HD 6 now costs just $99, and the Fire HD 7 is just $139. But the HDX has a stunning high-definition display (with 323 pixels per inch), and a faster quad-core processor which makes it extra responsive. Even its battery will last 11 hours without a charge

But the best thing about the Kindle Fire HDX may be its special on-device “Mayday” button. You can actually summon a live Amazon representative whenever you want, so any technical issues can be resolved instantly. Yes, some Amazon customers abuse the privilege with silly questions like “Will you read me a bedtime story?” But when I’ve got a technical problem with my device, I want it gone just as soon as possible.

Because then I can go back to having fun with my high-definition tablet…!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s special offer, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/HDXdiscount

Kindle Fire HDX discount

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October’s Discounted Kindle eBooks!

Crazy Horse and Custer by Stephen Ambrose      Deadpool Classic

Goosebumps - Night of the Living Ventriloquist's Dummy      A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers


There’s some great discounts in the Kindle Store this month. Every month Amazon picks 100 Kindle ebooks for a steep discount, with most of the books selling for $1.99 or less! And this month there’s some ebooks that I’m really excited about.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks


A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers

A Heartbreaking Work Of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers ($1.99)

“Exhilarating…. Profoundly moving, occasionally angry, and often hilarious…” wrote The New York Times Book Review — and this was one of the most intriguing memoirs I’ve ever read. A surprisingly funny and entertaining memoir about what happens to two sons when their parents both die of cancer, the Times writes that it “manages to be simultaneously hilarious and wildly inventive as well as a deeply heartfelt story of the love that holds a family together.” It was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, according to Wikipedia, and The London Times also named it one of the best books of the entire decade. When it was first released in 2000, Time magazine called it “The Best Book of the Year”, and it’s one of those rare books that you’ll never forget.


Deadpool Classic

Deadpool Classic, Vol. 1 ($3.99)

Marvel comic books are a guilty pleasure, so it’s great when they’re collected together into a big “graphic novel” for your Kindle. “Deadpool Classic” brings you 264 pages — nine full issues! — for just $3.99, starting with the four issues of Deadpool’s very first mini-series — and also the four issues of his next mini-series. Deadpool eventually got his own ongoing title, and this graphic novel also includes that as its final story. Like the She-Hulk, Deadpool actually “breaks the fourth wall,” talking directly to readers, which makes this collection a special treat. And if you’re interested in more Deadpool comics, Amazon’s also discounting another graphic novel — Deadpool: Dead Head Redemptionto just $3.99!


Crazy Horse and Custer by Stephen Ambrose

Crazy Horse and Custer: The Parallel Lives of Two American Warrior by Stephen Ambrose ($1.99)

I’ve always loved how Stephen Ambrose describes history. Little Bighorn, Montana saw the moment when General Custer launched a his infamous attack on 3,000 Indian warriors led by native American war leader Crazy Horse. “Both were men of aggression and supreme courage,” reads the book’s description at Amazon. “Both became leaders in their societies at very early ages. Both were stripped of power, in disgrace, and worked to earn back the respect of their people.

“And to both of them, the unspoiled grandeur of the Great Plains of North America was an irresistible challenge….”

And if you’ve got a subscription to the Kindle Unlimited service, this ebook is free!


Goosebumps - Night of the Living Ventriloquist's Dummy

Classic Goosebumps #1: Night of the Living Dummy by R. L. Stine ($1.99)

Just in time for Halloween, Amazon’s discounting a great tale about a ventriloquist’s dummy. One reviewer on Amazon described it as children’s horror literature, adding that Night of the Living Dummy “is quite possibly the greatest Goosebumps book ever written…” That’s no small claim, since there’s over 60 different books in the series, and It’s hard to underestimate the huge popularity of the series. Over 350 million Goosebumps titles have been sold, and one newspaper even called their author the Stephen King of children’s books. So it’s especially nice that for Halloween, Amazon’s discounting one of the very first books in the series, which they’re lovingly describing as a “fan-favorite thriller and chiller”. (And it even includes new bonus material — about the scary ventriloquist dummy who comes to life…!)

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September Kindle eBook Discounts!

John Lennon - The Life by Philip Norman Easy Go by Michael Crichton

The Best American Short Stories 2013 - Eliabeth Strout Daredevil Volume 1


I love Amazon’s Kindle ebooks sales — but this month selection seems unusually exciting. There’s famous authors (and famous characters), with new discounts on fiction, non-fiction, and even comic books. Amazon’s discounted over 100 Kindle ebooks to just $3.99 or less — including science fiction, biographies, and thrillers.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks


Here’s some of the most interesting selections…


John Lennon - The Life by Philip Norman

John Lennon: The Life by Philip Norman ($1.99)

This 800-page biography seems like it’s full of everything you want to know about the music legend — both before and after The Beatles. After three years of research, author Philip Norman apparently interviewed everyone who really knew John Lennon, according to the book’s description at Amazon, including Lennon’s own son Sean “whose moving reminiscence reveals his father as never before.” Norman also obtained rare interviews with Paul McCartney, George Martin, and Yoko Ono, “who speaks with sometimes shocking candor about the inner workings of her marriage to John.” And I have to admit that this book’s description is intriguing, calling it “Honest and unflinching, as John himself would wish…the whole man in all his endless contradictions…”



Easy Go by Michael Crichton

Easy Go by Michael Crichton ($1.99)

It’s a fun and fascinating novel from one of this century’s greatest literary careers. Just two years after making his debut at the age of 27, Michael Crichton imagined a fantastic story set in Egypt about an archaeologist who discovers ancient tomb filled with vast riches. There’s just one problem, according to Amazon. “He doesn’t just want to dig it up. He wants to steal it.” Soon our hero has teamed up with a smuggler, a thief, and an English lord to attempt history’s greatest heist — and of course, they’re walking right into a novel filled with danger. “Part Heist caper with some Indiana Jones mixed in,” writes one reviewer at Amazon, adding ” It would have made a great action movie….”


The Best American Short Stories 2013 - Eliabeth Strout

The Best American Short Stories 2013 by Elizabeth Strout ($2.99)

This collection is “wildly divergent and entertaining,” according to Booklist, “and each story is cultivated with a keen eye for voice and character…” I’ve always loved these collections of short fiction, and this year’s may be the best one yet (already becoming one of Amazon’s top 500 best-selling Kindle ebooks). “As our vision becomes more global,” explains this year’s guest editor, “our storytelling is stretching in many ways. Stories increasingly change point of view, switch location, and sometimes pack as much material as a short novel might.” That’s Elizabeth Strout, who also won the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and the editor of this series simply describes this collection as “twenty compellingly told, powerfully felt stories about urgent matters with profound consequences….”


Daredevil Volume 1

Daredevil, Vol. 1 by Mark Waid ($3.99)

Marvel Comic books are hard to find in Amazon’s Kindle Store — but they do have a great selection of graphic novels. And with new interest in The Avengers and The Guardians of the Galaxy, let’s not forget one of Marvel’s classic and most inspiring superheroes. Matt Murdock is “the man without fear,” and one comic book fan on Amazon describes this collection of six 2011 issues as “an incredible read, one of the best today!” (“If you like the fun of Spider-Man, but get a little tired of the self-deprecating humor or you love Batman, but don’t want to be bogged down by loads of continuity or maybe you just want to find something that’s both fun and thrilling all in the same place, do yourself a favor and pick this up!”)

And if you’re looking for more Marvel graphic novels, Amazon’s also discounted Ultimate X-Men Vol. 1: The Tomorrow People to just $3.99!

Ultimate X Men - Tomorrow People


Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s ebook discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

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OKCupid Founder Unleashes “Dataclysm”

Dataclysm by OkCupid found Christian Rudder

One of the founders of the dating site “OK Cupid” just released a new book — and it reveals some stunning insights about how people live today. (And Amazon’s discounting the Kindle edition to just $6.99.) After 10 years of running OKCupid, Christian Rudder has crunched the data to uncover some surprisingly clear patterns about what people really want. The title of his book? Dataclysm: Who We Are (When We Think No One’s Looking)

For a shortcut, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/Dataclysm

“Tonight, some thirty thousand couples will have their first date because of OkCupid,” Rudder writes in the book’s introduction. “Roughly three thousand of them will end up together long-term. Two hundred of those will get married, and many of them, of course, will have kids.” It seems like just one out of every 150 dates will end in marriage, I thought at first. But then I realized: that’s happening every night — so 73,000 marriages each year are beginning with OKCupid dates!

“There are children alive and pouting today,” jokes the site’s founder, “grouchy little humans refusing to put their shoes on right now, who would never have existed but for the whims of our HTML.” And Rudder used to maintain a blog on their dating site that was called “OKTrends” — interesting observations about what patterns they were observing — according to Wikipedia. Rudder only stopped writing the blog in order to collect the same kind of information into this book. And according to one reviewer at Amazon, “This book may be to Data Science…what Freakonomics was to Economics…”

So what did he learn? Rudder revealed one fascinating experiment in July. OKCupid tried blatantly lying about the compatability of online dates, telling customers they’d discovered someone who matched 90% of their dating criteria…when they’d actually only matched 30%. (And to test the opposite, OKCupid told some customers that they’d also found people matching a mere 30% of their criteria — when, secretly, those people were actually a 90% match!) The results? Users sent more messages –at least “a conversation” of four — when they believed there was compatibility. Their own interactions weren’t always enough to convince them to keep those conversations going….and they put more faith in the numbers from the web site!

And surprisingly, people were much more likely to take a chance on e-mailing a person when there were no pictures available to judge how attractive they were….

Christian Rudder graduated from Harvard with a degree in math, according to The New York Times, calling Rudder the “Unblushing Analyst of Attraction” for OKCupid. And there is a stunningly geeky frankness in the infographics he’s released in advance of the book. For example, Rudder reports that the most sexually-aggressive states in America are Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont, and Wyoming. Meanwhile, Ohio and New Hampshire are the states least interested in sex and most interested in finding love…

Of course, there’s also a startling confession in Rudder’s book. “I’ve never been on an online date in my life and neither have any of the other founders…” So he’s not trying to push people to their web site, “and if it’s not for you, believe me, I get that.

“Tech evangelism is one of my least favorite things!”

Remember, for a shortcut, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/Dataclysm

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A 35% Discount on a Kindle Fire HD!

Amazon discounts the Kindle Fire HD with a red gift bow for the Christmas holiday

“Today Only,” read the special announcement on Amazon. Friday they’d slashed the prices on the Kindle Fire HD to just $129!

For a shortcut, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/SeptemberKindleFire

But a more interesting question is why is Amazon offering massive discounts on their high-definition tablet?

First, it’s a refurbished version, but that doesn’t explain everything. And the second clue is that Amazon seems to running out of their basic $69 Kindle. “Expected to ship in 1 to 2 weeks,” reads the text Amazon quietly slipped onto their web page. Why the sudden dramatic shifting in Amazon’s inventory of Kindles?

Of course, one theory is that Amazon’s about to announce a new Kindle. They usually schedule these announcements in September, to build up anticipation for the devices they’ll be releasing right before the big shopping season after Thanksgiving. So Amazon, the theory goes, is making room for all these new Kindles. Which they’re going to have to store someplace while they wait for new customers to order them…

What will Amazon announce? They’ll want to upgrade their tablets to keep up with their new competition. Maybe Amazon will add the Firefly button, and the other cool new features that they introduced with their Fire Phone. Besides being fun to play with, those features also made it easier to buy more things from Amazon.

So my guess is Amazon will include it on as many devices as possible!

Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s Kindle Fire HD page, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/SeptemberKindleFire

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New XKCD Book Discounted 50% for Pre-Orders

XKCD cartoonist publishes a What If book

Amazon’s discounting the newest book by XKCD cartoonist Randall Munroe by up to 50% — and it’s already become one of their best-selling books! It’s available as Kindle ebook for just $11.99 — a 50% discount from its cover price of $24 — if you pre-order before its official release this week. Even the hardcover edition has been discounted by 40% (to just $14.40)!

For a shortcut to the discounted book’s page, point your browser to
tinyURL.com/XKCDAuthor

And in other news, “I’m excited to announce that I’ll be going on a book tour!” the author posted recently on his blog. When the book is finally released Tuesday, he’ll be appearing in Cambridge, Massachusetts at the Harvard Book Store. Then on Friday it’s New York City, for the Barnes and Noble at Union Square. Within four days, he’ll be appearing in Seattle (at Town Hall), for a Tuesday night appearance which is already sold out. And by Thursday and Friday, it’s San Francisco and Berkeley, for two appearances which are both, also, already sold out…

XKCD book tour map

Amazingly, his book has already jumped onto Amazon’s best-seller list even though it hasn’t been released yet, grabbing different spots in the top 10 throughout this weekend. (Currently it’s ranked #9 on Amazon’s list of hardcover best-sellers– higher than To Kill a Mockingbird and The Fault in Our Stars…) “This title will be auto-delivered to your Kindle on September 2, 2014,” Amazon advises shoppers, promising them the best of both worlds. You can still claim the huge pre-order discount — and then receive the ebook on Tuesday!

What’s even more amazing is it became a best-seller at Amazon five months ago. When the XKCD creator first announced this title, it became Amazon’s #2 most popular hard-cover book. “It’s like a surreal story from one of the author’s own comic strips,” I wrote in March. “In our yet-to-happen future, his book decides to travel backwards through time, stopping off in March of 2014 to inform Amazon’s best-seller list that yes, in our coming timeline this book will be widely read.” And ironically, the book’s title is What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions. (Like what would happen if you threw a baseball at 90% of the speed of light…? )

I thought it was nice of the author to include a “Google Hangout” on his book tour. On Friday September 12th, he’ll appear in the live online chat (though questions will be limited to four carefully-chosen fans…) Then there’s one more stop in Santa Monica, before he returns home to continue drawing his comic strip.

And yes, Amazon is also selling a collection of his popular comic strip –though that book is only available in hardcover…


Remember, for a shortcut to his book’s page — and the earlier collection of
the author’s comic strips — point your browser to
tinyURL.com/XKCDAuthor

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Amazon Discounts eBook/Audiobook Combinations


Dead Man's Folly - a Hercule Poirot Mystery by Agatha Christie   Sarah Silverman - the Bedwetter

Anathem by Neal Stephenson   Love is a Mix Tape by Rob Sheffield

I almost forgot to check Amazon’s regularly-scheduled monthly sale of ebooks. (“Each month we unveil a new collection of Kindle books for $3.99 or less…”) And Amazon’s also offering especially attractive discounts when you purchase an audiobook and its Kindle version together. They’ve discounted more than 75 audiobook/ebook pairs to less than $8.00!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounts, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

The discounts always disappear on the last day of the month, so this month that’d be Sunday, August 31st. (Which means if you re-visit the URL on Monday — September 1st — there’ll be an entirely new selection to choose from!) I always love the variety of choices — and this month there’s some unusually good choices.

Here’s some of the more interesting titles.


Anathem by Neal Stephenson

Anathem by Neal Stephenson ($1.99)

The science fiction maestro behind Snow Crash and Cryptonomicon delivers another mind-blowing piece of “speculative fiction”. Set on the planet Arbre, it describes a haven for intellectuals — the scientists, mathematicians, and philosophers of a strange civilization — who suddenly find themselves facing “cataclysmic change” (according to the book’s description at Amazon). The sprawling adventure fills over 1000 pages in its print edition — the audiobook runs a full 32 hours and 30 minutes. But thanks to Amazon’s special pricing, you can get that audiobook for just $3.99 when you purchase the ebook for $1.99 — making the whole combined package just $6.00.


Sarah Silverman - the Bedwetter

The Bedwetter: Stories of Courage, Redemption, and Pee by Sarah Silverman ($1.99)

Sarah Silverman shocks audiences with her fierce, raw jokes — and her latest book was no exception. “From the outrageously filthy and oddly innocent comedienne Sarah Silverman comes a memoir – her first book – that is at once shockingly personal, surprisingly poignant, and still pee-in-your-pants funny,” reads the book’s description at Amazon. But The Bedwetter also pulls back the curtain to reveal a little true information about Sarah, according to one reviewer at Amazon. “I expected this book to be hilarious, and it is… What I didn’t expect were the sensitivity and sincerity that Sarah has brought to both the writing of the book and to its glimpses behind the scenes into her personal life and the thoughtfulness behind the humor.”

And the audiobook — read by Sarah Silverman — is only $3.99 (when you also purchase the Kindle ediition for $1.99). For 5 hours and 42 minutes, she reads her own memoir out loud, and I even found myself laughing as she read the book’s copyright information with her classic deadpan enthusiasm. “Harper Audio presents The Bedwetter…by Sarah Silverman. Read by, Sarah Silverman. Me! Copyright 2010 by Sarah Silverman…. Dedication: for my family. I am so proud to be a part of us… A few names have been changed so I don’t hurt anyone’s feelings or get sued…”


Dead Man's Folly - a Hercule Poirot Mystery by Agatha Christie

Dead Man’s Folly: Hercule Poirot Investigates by Agatha Chrstie ($1.99)

“Agatha Christie’s Poirot” appeared for nearly 25 years on British television, with 70 episodes that introduced audiences to a brilliant but quirky Belgian detective (played by David Suchet). So it’s a real treat that David Suchet himself reads the audiobook edition for Dead Man’s Folly: Hercule Poirot Investigates. The audiobook is just $3.99 when you purchase the $1.99 Kindle edition.) And I always think of this book as one of Agatha Christie’s most personal mysteries…

It’s the story of a “murder party” — where people gather to solve a mock crime (which inevitably turns into a real one…) Hercule Poirot straddles the line between fact and fiction, in a story which Agatha Christie wrote to raise money for a local church’s fundraiser. They were raising money to purchase a stained glass window, but in the end, Christie gave them the proceeds from an entirely different story about her other famous detective, Miss Marple. And then she expanded this story into a full-length Hercule Poirot novel!


Love is a Mix Tape by Rob Sheffield

Love Is a Mix Tape: Life and Loss, One Song at a Time by Rob Sheffield ($3.99)

When Rolling Stone‘s contributing editor published his first book, it was a stunning story about his early days as a DJ — and falling in love with another DJ named Renée Crist. The ’90s were the decade “of Kurt Cobain and Shania Twain,” jokes the book’s description at Amazon, adding “It was also when a shy music geek named Rob Sheffield met a hell-raising Appalachian punk-rock girl named Renée, who was way too cool for him but fell in love with him anyway.

“He was tall. She was short. He was shy. She was a social butterfly. She was the only one who laughed at his jokes when they were so bad, and they were always bad. They had nothing in common except that they both loved music…” Sheffield himself reads the book’s audiobook version — $3.99 when you also purchase the $3.99 Kindle edition — and when he looks back on the memories of his late wife, you sense a tenderness and the emotion that compelled him to pull together this book.

“In Love Is a Mix Tape, Rob, now a writer for Rolling Stone, uses the songs on fifteen mix tapes to tell the story of his brief time with Renée… Love Is a Mix Tape isn’t a love song- but it might as well be. This is Rob’s tribute to music, to the decade that shaped him, but most of all to one unforgettable woman.”


Remember, for a shortcut to all of Amazon’s discounted ebooks,
point your browser to:

tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

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More Great eBooks Get “Big Deal” Discounts!

Perry Mason pulp fiction cover - the Case of the Angry MournerI'll Fly Away by Wally Lamb.jpg
Shot All to Hell - Jesse James history by Mark Lee GardnerProfit Over People by Noam Chomsky

I love these big discounts Amazon’s offering on Kindle ebooks. (Up to 85% off on over 400 books — but only through August 24th). There’s hundreds of fun and fascinating titles — and cheap enough that it’s easy to try something new!

Check out the selection! Point your browser to
tinyURL.com/TheBigEbookDeal

Here’s a few more of the most interesting titles…


Perry Mason pulp fiction cover - the Case of the Angry Mourner

Five Perry Mason Novels ($1.99 each)

The famous lawyer/detective frees the innocent in five of the original mystery novels by Erle Stanley Gardner. Amazon’s discounted each one to just $1.99 — and they’re free if you’re a subscriber to Amazon’s “Kindle Unlimited” program. There’s The Case of the Haunted Husband and The Case of the Sulky Girl — in a series which made Erle Stanley Gardner one of America’s all-time best-selling authors. Over 50 Perry Mason mysteries have now been published as Kindle ebooks — each one with a lurid cover that celebrates the glory days of pulp fiction. There’s also The Case of the Angry Mourner and The Case of the Fugitive Nurse. And it’s impossible not to be intrigued by an ebook titled The Case of the Grinning Gorilla!


I'll Fly Away by Wally Lamb.jpg

I’ll Fly Away by Wally Lamb ($1.99)

His first novel, She’s Come Undone was a best-seller — and so was his second novel, written six years later — I Know This Much Is True. But Wally Lamb also has a remarkable story about stories — the ones written by the inmates at a women’s prison in Connecticut. Since 1999 he’s worked at the York Correctional Institution, a maximum-security prison, where he learned that writing “was a way for these women to face their fears and failures and begin to imagine better lives,” according to the book’s description at Amazon. “Startling, heartbreaking, and inspiring, these stories are as varied as the individuals who wrote them, but each illuminates an important core truth: that a life can be altered through self-awareness and the power of the written word.”


Shot All to Hell - Jesse James history by Mark Lee Gardner

Shot All to Hell: Jesse James, the Northfield Raid, and the Wild West’s Greatest Escape by Mark Lee Gardener ($1.99)

Mark Lee Gardner is one of my favorite writers about “the old West.” He looks at America through the eyes of its outlaws, capturing the world they lived in and the larger forces that were shaping their time. Jesse James committed the most famous bank robbery of all time, according to this book’s description at Amazon, and Gardner gives the thief the same thoughtful appraisal that he brought to his previous book about Billy the Kid. “With compelling details that chronicle the two-week chase that followed — the near misses, the fateful mistakes, and the bloody final shootout on the Watonwan River, Shot All to Hell is a galloping true tale of frontier justice…”


Profit Over People by Noam Chomsky

Profit Over People: Neoliberalism and Global Order by Noam Chomsky ($3.03)

At the age of 71, Noam Chomsky penned a sharp critique of the world’s political (and economic) structure which was apparently ahead of its time. Written in 1999, this book uncovers the roots of the fiscal crisis of 2008, according to the book’s description at Amazon, which adds that “In the years since the initial publication of Profit Over People, the stakes have only risen…” Howard Zinn would call the book “brilliant and devastating…a powerful rush of facts and ideas,” and it offers a new perspective on the free market that my high school economics teacher kept talking about. “Now more than ever, Profit Over People is one of the key texts explaining how the crisis facing us operates,” claims the book’s description, “and how, through Chomsky’s analysis of resistance, we may find an escape from the closing net…”


Remember, for a shortcut point your browser to
tinyURL.com/TheBigEbookDeal

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Amazon Discounts 400 Kindle eBooks by up to 85%

Guardians of the Galaxy - Volume 1The Big Four - a Hercule Poirot mystery by Agatha Christie

More Stories from The Twilight Zone by Rod SerlingSlash by Slash

A lot of great ebooks are on sale at Amazon — but only for the next two weeks! It’s their special “Big Deal” sale — “up to 85% off on more than 400 Kindle ebooks” — and through August 24th, they’re offering an incredible variety of choices.

Check out the selection! Point your browser to
tinyURL.com/TheBigEbookDeal

Here’s some of the most exciting ebooks…


Guardians of the Galaxy - Volume 1

Guardians of the Galaxy: Volume 1 ($3.99)

It’s six issues of the Marvel comic book — 152 pages — bound together into a full-color Kindle ebook! See Peter Quill (a.k.a. “Star-Lord”), plus Drax the Destroyer, and Gamora — the “deadliest woman alive”. (And of course, Rocket Racoon…) You can read this cosmic comic book on any touch-screen Kindle — as well as the Kindle apps for smartphones and tablets — and it’s a good way to explore the strange characters from this summer’s big blockbuster movie. “Two words sum up this book: Action and Humor,” writes one reviewer on Amazon. “If you like either you should definitely pick it up.”


More Stories from The Twilight Zone by Rod Serling
More Stories from The Twilight Zone by Rod Serling ($1.99)

Are you ready for another eerie journey into a dimension of sight and sound — and the mind? Rod Serling promised TV viewers “the middle ground between science and superstition…the pit of man’s fears and the summit of his knowledge” — but the award-winning writer also delivered those same thrills in print! Serling adapated his favorite TV scripts into chilling short stories which are drawing wildly positive reviews from fans of the series. (” fantastically written…wonderful descriptions and wordsmithing.”) There’s even an introduction by Rod Serling’s daughter — and the whole ebook is free if you’ve subscribed to Amazon’s Kindle Unlimited service. (And if you’re a member of Amazon Prime, you can also watch all of the original Twilight Zone episodes for free…)


The Big Four - a Hercule Poirot mystery by Agatha Christie

The Big Four (a Hercule Poirot Mystery) by Agatha Christie ($1.99)

Agatha Christie’s famous Belgian detective — accompanied by his friend Captain Hastings — is enjoying a boat trip to South America. But suddenly a strange man appears (covered in mud and dust) scrawling the number 4 over and over again, delivering a crucial clue in yet another murder investigation. Or is it international intrigue — and potentially a sinister cabal of crooked criminals waiting to be brought to justice? One Amazon reviewer described this brilliant piece of detective fiction as “absolutely one of Agatha Christie’s best Hercule Poirot mysteries.”


Slash by Slash

Slash by Slash ($1.99)

The guitarist for Guns N’ Rose delivers a memoir “that redefines sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll,” according to this book’s description on Amazon. Sharing “intensely personal” stories about a life of unlimited debauchery (from riots to rehab), Slash reveals the path from a rock-and-roll salvation to his own evolution and triumph, in a book which was surprisingly well-reviewed. (“Funny, honest, inspiring, jaw-dropping . . . and, in a word, excessive,” reads its description on Amazon — and the British newspaper The Observer calls it “The most insane rock n’ roll autobiography you’ll ever read…”)


Remember, for a shortcut point your browser to
tinyURL.com/TheBigEbookDeal

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Amazon Introduces a New All-You-Can-Read Deal for EBooks!

Kindle Unlimited

Amazon’s just announced a surprising new deal! Now you can subscribe to their “all you can read” service for just $9.99 a month! This lets you read any ebook from their special selection of more than 600,000 titles.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s new offer, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/UnlimitedKindle

And the service isn’t limited to just Kindle ebooks. Amazon’s also including thousands of audiobooks as part of the package. “With Kindle Unlimited, you won’t have to think twice before you try a new author or genre,” points out an Amazon Kindle executive. “You can just start reading and listening!”

And Amazon also lets you “sync” your audiobooks with your ebooks, so you can switch over to a hands-free/listening mode whenever you need to — and then switch back to continue reading at that new location in your ebook! (Amazon calls this “allowing the story to continue even when your eyes are busy.”) It’s a feature that’s been enabled on thousands of the ebooks available in their “Unlimited” subscription service. Just look for this “Whispersync for Voice” logo on the book’s page at Amazon.

WhisperSync for Voice

There’s even a free 30-day trial, so you can feel what it’s like to have all of these ebooks available without having to worry about price. (Plus a free three-month subscription for every single audiobook available at Audible.com). And yes, this subscription service also includes Amazon’s “Kindle Singles”, so you can also read the shorter new works by authors like Stephen King. Amazon’s even got some exclusive ebooks — titles which haven’t even been released yet, but which are available a month early to Kindle customers…

It’s interesting to speculate about why Amazon’s offering a subscription service. But maybe it’s because people really were shopping around for the cheapest titles. It’s hard for Amazon to make any money if people keep choosing their ebooks from Amazon’s “free” section. With this new program, Amazon will at least get $120 a year from every subscriber.

And Kindle owners will get to read as many ebooks as they want!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s new offer, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/UnlimitedKindle

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Special Kindle eBook Discounts for July

Little Bee book cover     Ella Enchanted book cover

Murder in the Ball Park     A Dog Named Slugger


It’s one of my favorite things about owning a Kindle. “Each month we unveil a new collection of Kindle books for $3.99 or less,” Amazon explains on a special web page. It always feels like a special event, and if I don’t check out the new selection, I always feels like I’m missing something!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounted Kindle ebooks, point your browser to:
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

Here’s some of the most interesting titles…


LIttle Bee book cover

Little Bee by Chris Cleave ($1.99)

It’s impossible not to be intrigued by this novel’s description at Amazon. (“The lives of a sixteen-year-old Nigerian orphan and a well-off British woman collide in this page-turning #1 New York Times bestseller…”) But then they suddenly turn coy, adding “We don’t want to tell you too much about this book. It is a truly special story and we don’t want to spoil it… It is extremely funny, but the African beach scene is horrific. The story starts there, but the book doesn’t.

“And it’s what happens afterward that is most important…”


Murder in the Ball Park

Murder in the Ball Park (The Nero Wolfe Mysteries) by Robert Goldsborough ($1.99)

It’s a brand new mystery starring the famous “armchair detective,” Nero Wolfe — and there’s a fascinating story behind this story. The wealthy New York City detective first appeared in a novel in 1934, according to Wikipedia, and continued delighting mystery readers for the next 40 years. And then a new author took over the series in 1986 — publishing another 11 novels over the next 28 years that continued the detective’s investigations. Amazingly, the most recent Nero Wolfe story was published in 2014, and it looks like an exciting case. “Wolfe earns a big league call-up after a senator gets taken out at the ball game,” reads the mystery’s description at Amazon. (And in an ironic touch, the story opens with a baseball game between the Brooklyn Dodgers versus the New York Giants — two teams which have long since left Wolfe’s beloved New York City for California!)


A Dog Named Slugger

A Dog Named Slugger by Leigh Brill ($1.99)

It’s a true and heart-warming story about a “struggling college student and the Labrador with ‘a coat like sunshine’,” according to the book’s description at Amazon, “and a tail that never stopped wagging…” The student has cerebral palsy, but when she’s matched up with a service dog, “Together, they transformed a challenge into a triumph” — and also inspired everybody that they met. I love a good dog book, and this one has already become Amazon’s #1 best-seller in their category “Animal Care and Pet Essays”. Plus, it’s also drawing rave reviews from Booklist, which call it “a touching memoir”, and “a sweet story about a woman and her dog.”


Ella Enchanted book cover

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine ($1.99)

Before it was made into an Anne Hathaway movie, this charming young adult novel won a prestigious Newbery honor back in 1998. It’s 240-page twist on the Cinderella story, according to the book’s description at Amazon. (“Instead of a demure heroine patiently awaiting a prince who will carry her off, this Ella is a feisty ball of fire with the courage and ambition to take matters into her own hands…”) But there’s one catch: an enchantment forces her to obey any orders that are given to her. It’s quite a premise, and at least one satisfied Amazon customer described it as “the best book I’ve ever read in my entire life.”


Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s discounted Kindle ebooks,
point your browser to:

tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

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Save $50 on a New Kindle Fire Tablet!

Amazon Discounts Kindle Fire HDX for Cyber Monday

It’s a summer special that’s hard to resist! Amazon’s offering big discounts on their Kindle Fire tablets — including their newest high-definition Kindle Fire HDX. It’s now possible to save up to $50 on a new Kindle Fire tablet. And Amazon’s also offering discounts on accessories for your Kindle.

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounted Kindles, point your browser to
tinyurl.com/KindleSummerSale

For example, for just $119 you can purchase a Kindle Fire HD — a $20 savings over its usual price of $139. That’s for the 8-gigabyte version, but if you’d like more storage space, Amazon’s also discounting the 16-gigabyte Kindle Fire HD, to just $129. (Normally it retails for $40 more — $169!) They’re described on Amazon’s web page as “Our most affordable Kindle Fire, now in high-definition…”

But of course, Amazon released an even better tablet last year called the Kindle Fire HDX — and they’re also on sale! Right now you can get a Kindle Fire HDX for just $199. That’s a $30 savings — and Amazon will give you the same discount if you purchase a tablet with extra storage space. The cheapest model comes with 16 gigabytes of storage, but for an extra $40 you can upgrade that to the 32-gigabyte version. And even the 64-gigabyte Kindle Fire HDX now costs just $259 — a $50 discount over its usual retail price of $309!

Amazon’s touting the special as a “Back to School” deal (calling their tablets “the perfect gift for students.”) But there’s also some other gift opportunities. If you look carefully at each Kindle’s page, you’ll notice that Amazon’s offering discounted accessories as the right side of the page. You can save up to $15 on a spiffy new case for your Kindle tablet. (My last Kindle had a leather case, and while reading it was really nice to feel that soft leather-y touch.) The joke’s on Amazon, because this September I have absolutely no plans of going back to school whatsoever.

But I’m definitely going to take advantage of this sale!


Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s discounted Kindles,
point your browser to
tinyurl.com/KindleSummerSale

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New Big Discounts on Kindle eBooks!

Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut Hollywood by Charles BukowskiThe Return of Little Big Man A Most Wanted Man by John le Carre

Every month Amazon discounts dozens of Kindle ebooks — to just $3.99 or less! And June is almost over, making this the last week to buy the ebooks at their discounted price. It’s my favorite time to browse for ebooks, and not just because there’s usually a great selection. You can browse all these discounts over the weekend, and then visit the same page on Tuesday (July 1st) to see a whole new selection of more discounted Kindle ebooks!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounted Kindle ebooks, point your browser to:
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

Here’s some of this month’s most interesting titles…


Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut

Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut ($1.99)

It’s one of Kurt Vonnegut’s last novel — and with one of his wildest plots. There’s a cluster of characters shipwrecked on an island who suddenly become the only survivors of a catastrophic epidemic — and the novel looks at the world which results…one million years later! One reviewer called it “the humorous, ironic and sometimes carping decline of the human race”, and at least one of Amazon’s customers described it as one of his favorite Vonnegut novels, applauding its grandiose plot and its sense of humor — concluding “in the end Galapagos is interesting, funny, unconventional, and just a great read.”


Hollywood by Charles Bukowski

Hollywood by Charles Bukowski ($1.99)

It’s the second-to-last novel ever written by Charles Bukowski. Just five years before his death at age 73, Bukowski created this 250-page portrait of one of the most extreme cultures of all — Hollywood! After living a life of drunkenness combined with some great and empathetic writing, Bukowski had been commissioned to write a screenplay about his own life in 1984. That resulted in the movie Barfly, but Bukowski wasn’t through with Hollywood yet. “In this hilarious roman a clef, Bukowski draws on his experiences while writing the script…” explains the book’s description at Amazon, adding that the book’s main character is also penning a screenplay about his early life, “as a barfly and brawler, before he became a famous author.” And you’ll recognize many real-life actors, directors, and other famous personalities — because the characters in this book are drawn straight from real life!


The Return of Little Big Man

The Return of Little Big Man by Thomas Berger ($1.99)

“Jack Crabb is now 112 years old,” begins the book’s description at Amazon, “and he isn’t done spinning yarns.” Thomas Berger’s original novel explored the life of an 111-year-old man who claimed (among other things) to be the only survivor of Custer’s Last Stand. His fantastic stories about real life in the American west inspired a 1970 movie. But nearly 30 years later, in 1999, 75-year-old Thomas Berger resurrected his own character to deliver even more tall tales. “Crabb claims to have witnessed most of the great historical events of the western frontier,” reads the book’s description at Amazon, “hiding behind a wagon after a drunken Doc Holliday provokes the shootout at the OK Corral; joining Buffalo Bill Cody and Annie Oakley on tour with their international Wild West show; even taking tea with Queen Victoria when she came out of seclusion after a quarter century!” Like the movie, the novel promises to be funny, but according to Amazon, there’s another layer to this historical fantasmagoria, which they ultimately describe as “a sidesplitting novel of surprising emotional depth.”

And the ebook edition includes a special new introduction by the now-89-year-old author!


A Most Wanted Man by John le Carre

A Most Wanted Man by John le Carre ($1.99)

John le Carre has been writing spy novels for more than 50 years. But in 2008, at the age of 76, he reached back to his own memories of working as a British spy in Germany. Or did he? The world’s changed a lot since the 1950s, and in le Carre’s novel (also set in Germany), the intrigue surrounds a mysterious young Russian smuggled into Germany, who may or may not be a terrorist. There’s also a strong female attorney defending him against deportation, and according to Amazon, le Carre’s novel quickly becomes “Thrilling, compassionate, peopled with characters the reader never wants to let go.” They called the novel “fiercely compelling”, but more than that, describe its overall effect as “a work of deep humanity and uncommon relevance to our times…”

Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s discounted Kindle ebooks,
point your browser to:

tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

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Four Sexy Discounted Kindle eBooks!

The G-String Murders by Gypsy Rose LeeThe Graduate Book Cover by Charles Webb

The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love by Oscar HijuelosBig Time - The Amazing Spider-Man Graphic Novel

Kindle means variety — there’s always so many ebooks to choose from. And Amazon surprised me last week with with some of their choices for their “Big Deal” discount event. They’d discounted over 400 Kindle ebooks — and at least a few of their selections were sexy literary classics!

To see the full selection, point your browser to
TheBigEbookDeal



The G-String Murders by Gypsy Rose Lee

The G-String Murders by Gypsy Rose Lee ($3.99)

Yes, the famous stripper wrote a murder mystery “set in the underworld of burlesque theatre,” according to this Kindle ebook’s description at Amazon. “The G-String Murders was penned in 1941 by the legendary queen of the stripteasers — the witty and wisecracking Gypsy Rose Lee…” The story’s full of twists (and a double murder), as Lolita LaVerne teams up with comic Biff Brannigan and Siggy the g-string salesman, squaring off against corrupt policemen…. It’s part of a special series called Femmes Fatales that’s resurrecting pulp fiction and hard-boiled noir detective tales for a new audience of ebook readers in the 21st century. And through May 11th they’re also discounting another Gypsy Rose Lee murder mystery — called Mother Finds a Body!


The Graduate Book Cover by Charles Webb

The Graduate by Charles Webb ($1.99)

At the age of 24, Charles Web published the ground-breaking novel which became the legendary movie chronicling a young man’s affair with the predatory Mrs. Robinson. But both the movie and the book were really about alienation, which comes through even more clearly in Webb’s original novel. While it’s laugh-out-loud funny, there’s also real angst, according to one review, as Webb “savors that that tension throughout the book, devoting large sections to rambling dialogue showing Ben’s failure to connect.” It’s fun to see scenes where this dialogue was faithfully recreated in the 1967 movie — as well as the tantalizing additional scenes that were left out!


The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love by Oscar Hijuelos

The Mambo Kings Play Songs of Love by Oscar Hijuelos ($1.99)

This novel won the 1990 Pulitzer Prize for fiction — and when it appeared on the Kindle this November, it included a new afterword by the author! It became a movie and an international best-seller, but I was even more impresed with how one editor at Wikipedia condensed the entire novel into a few juicy sentences. “It tells the story of Cesar Castillo, an aged musician who once had a small amount of fame when he and his brother appeared on an episode of I Love Lucy in the 1950s. The book chronicles Cesar’s last hours as he sits in a seedy hotel room, drinking and listening to recordings made by his band, the Mambo Kings…” And if you’re an Amazon Prime member, you can even read this book for free!


Big Time - The Amazing Spider-Man Graphic Novel

Spider-Man: Big Time by Dan Slott and Humberto Ramos ($1.99)

If you like stories about superheroes, this is one of the best collections of Spider-Man stories I’ve ever read. But there’s some fun looks at Spider-Man’s personal life — including his relationship with a sexy jewel thief named The Black Cat! This graphic novel opens with a great story starring all of the Avengers, but it’s not just Dr. Octopus who’s attacking New York — soon there’s a high-powered new version of the Hobgoblin! (And there’s also a new character who I’d swear was modeled after Steve Jobs.) All 144 pages of this collection appear in full-color on your Kindle Fire tablet — but for many of the new e-ink Kindles, it’s also available in black and white!

To see all 427 of Amazon’s discounted Kindle ebooks, point your browser to
TheBigEbookDeal

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Amazon Announces a New eBook Deal!

Kurt Vonnegut Bluebeard Defining Moments book cover - Gordon Zacks
Perry Mason - Case of the Moth-Eaten Mink Garry Kasparov - How Life Imitates Chess

It’s one of the great things about owning a Kindle: there’s so many things to read! And for the next week, Amazon’s making it even easier, with an event called “The Big Deal”. More than 400 different Kindle ebooks have been discounted through May 11th, so everybody should be able to find something.

Check out the selection! Point your browser to
tinyURL.com/TheBigEbookDeal

I spent at least a half an hour browsing through the entire selection, and here’s some of the ebooks that looked especially interesting…



Garry Kasparov - How Life Imitates Chess


How Life Imitates Chess by Garry Kasparov ($1.99)

For 20 years he ruled the chess world with some of the highest ratings of any Grandmaster. But in 2007, as he approached middle age, Kasparov turned his mind to a book which “distills the lessons he learned over a lifetime…” according to Amazon, “to offer a primer on successful decision-making: how to evaluate opportunities, anticipate the future, devise winning strategies.” Amazon describes Kasparov’s style as “lively” and “insightful” which touches on memory, intuition, and even the fine art of fantasy. And best of all, you can also pair this ebook with an audiobook partly narrated by Kasparov himself — and then sync the audiobook to the ebook. This let’s you switch from one to the other without losing your place — or to read along while you’re listening to the professional narration!



Kurt Vonnegut Bluebeard


Bluebeard: The Autobiography of Rabo Karabekian (1916-1988) by Kurt Vonnegut ($1.99)

This isn’t like other Kurt Vonnegut novels. It was published in 1987, shortly before Vonnegut’s 65th birthday, and the introspective novel explores the life of a strange 71-year-old painter. (“I promised you an autobiography,” the painter apologizes in the first chapter, “but something went wrong in the kitchen…”) Amazon describes the book as Vonnegut’s “meditation on art, artists, surrealism, and disaster,” and it’s actually his second novel with his character of the eccentric painter. “Rabo Karabekian” also appeared 14 years earlier in a brief scene in Breakfast of Champions. And through May 11, Amazon is discounting both books to just $1.99 — as well as the Vonnegut novel Deadeye Dick. And there’s also discounts on two fun collections of Vonnegut’s short stories — Welcome to the Monkey-House and Bagombo Snuff Box!


Defining Moments book cover - Gordon Zacks


Defining Moments: Stories of Character, Courage and Leadership by Gordon Zacks ($1.99)

One reviewer described these as “Masterpiece snapshots of leadership with mind-blowing take-home value” by an author who “walked the halls of power with the greatest…” At the age of 73, author/activist Gordon Zacks took a look back at the inspiring people he’d worked with over his life. “These stories are first-hand accounts of how people — some famous, some not — followed their passion, lived their purpose, and aspired to be part of something greater than their selves. These people had the courage to seize their moment and make the world a better place, revealing valuable lessons on the path to a more rewarding life.”


Perry Mason - Case of the Moth-Eaten Mink


The Case of the Moth-Eaten Mink by Erle Stanley Gardner (99 cents!)

It’s a Perry Mason mystery — one of the original novels which formed the basis for Raymond Burr’s classic TV show. Through May 11th, five different Perry Mason mysteries are on sale for just 99 cents. Amazon also discounting The Case of the Velvet Claws, The Case of the Perjured Parrot, The Case of the Foot-Loose Doll, and The Case of the Runaway Corpse. I was surprised to discover that each of the original mysteries were nearly 400 pages long. But each one grapples with one of Perry Mason’s trademark mysteries wrapped in questions of law, like “Did Wealthy Fremont Sabin divorce his wife before his untimely death….?”


Remember, to see all 427 discounted Kindle ebooks, point your browser to
tinyURL.com/TheBigEbookDeal

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Amazon Discounts More Fun eBooks!

Upstairs at the White House - My Life with the First LadiesThe Forgotten Sister - Mary Bennet's Pride and PrejudiceBall Four - Jim BoutonThe New Avengers - Breakout

Today I took another look at Amazon’s discounted ebooks for the month of April — and I was stunned by how many more ebooks were on sale that I actually wanted to read! Yes, Amazon chooses over 100 ebooks each month to discount to “$3.99 or less”. But this month’s selection just seemed unusually good!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s discounted Kindle ebooks, point your browser to:
tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

Here’s some of the titles that I thought were especially intriguing…


Upstairs at the White House - My Life with the First Ladies

Upstairs at the White House: My Life with the First Ladies by J.B. West ($1.99)

For 28 years, J.B. West worked at the White House — a witty and discreet man who coordinated all the day-to-day details for the presidents, their first ladies, and the rest of their families. Jackie Onassis called him “one of the most extraordinary men I have ever met,” and when he finally published a memoir, it sold millions of copies and became a New York Times bestseller. Now available as a Kindle ebook, this 381-page classic begins with stories about Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, as well as Harry and Bess Truman and Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower. It’s nice to get a personal glimpse at the lives of the people in power, and West remained in the White House through 1969, so his book also contains some very dramatic stories about the end of the Kennedy administration, as well as the transition to president Lyndon B. Johnson and his wife Lady Bird (and ends with the arrival of president Richard M. Nixon). “Mr. West takes the high road, and we get to enjoy the view with him,” writes one reviewer on Amazon. “Well done, Mr. Chief Usher!”


The Forgotten Sister - Mary Bennet's Pride and Prejudice

The Forgotten Sister: Mary Bennet’s Pride and Prejudice by Jennifer Paynter ($1.99)

Another fresh twist on Pride and Prejudice tells the story of Elizabeth’s younger sister, “marginalized by her mother, and ridiculed by her father.” You may remember the quiet and “plain” who just wanted to read books, but in this new 440-page novel, author Jennifer Paynter imagines Mary finding her own intense feelings — for an impoverished young local fiddle player. Amazon’s description calls this book “elegant” and “graceful”, offering its own new look at Jane Austen’s familiar themes. “It is only after her sisters tease her about her ‘beau with the bow’ that Mary is forced to examine her real feelings and confront her own brand of pride and prejudice…”


Ball Four - Jim Bouton

Ball Four by Jim Bouton ($1.99)

This rollicking memoir by baseball player Jim Bouton became the best-selling sports book of all-time for its wild and funny stories about the major leagues — though it was extremely controversial when it was first published in 1970. (Bouton remembers when the San Diego Padres “burned the book and left the charred remains for me to find in the visitors clubhouse…” adding that “All that hollering and screaming sure sold books!”) Bouton describes Ball Four as “the kinds of stories an observant next-door neighbor might come home and tell if he ever spent some time with a major-league team,” and one of his teammates described Bouton as “the first fan to make it to the major leagues”. Bouton went from pitching in the World Series with the New York Yankees to Seattle’s forgotten expansion team (the Seattle Pilots ) before being traded to the Houston Astros — but he collects together all the lore and the secret taboos of professional baseball in what Time magazine once called one of the 100 greatest non-fiction books ever published.


The New Avengers - Breakout

The New Avengers, Vol. 1: Breakout by Brian Michael Bendis and David Finch ($1.99)

What would happen if every comic book super-villain broke out of prison at the same time? Spider-Man is about to find out, along with Captain America, Iron Man, Wolverine, Luke Cage, and Spider-Woman. It’s six issues of The New Avengers, presented in full color on Kindle Fire tablets (and any Amazon Kindle app), and also in black-and-white for the Kindle Touch and Kindle Paperwhite. And one reviewer notes one of the best things about this collection: “it is funny. Laugh out loud funny!”

Remember, for a shortcut to each month’s discounted Kindle ebooks,
you can always point your browser to:

tinyurl.com/399KindleEbooks

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