Amazon Announces Big Summer Kindle eBooks

Amazon Summer Reading

It feels like the first week of summer, since all across America people just enjoyed a sunny three-day weekend. It’s the last holiday before summer, and it always reminds me that fun times are just around the corner. And whatever you do this summer, Amazon wants to make sure that your Kindle is freshly stocked with new Kindle ebooks. They’ve just created a special “Summer Reading” page — and it’s really fun to browse through Amazon’s list of Summer Reads!

For a shortcut to Amazon’s page, point your browser to

There’s 1,890 books on the list — but Amazon’s broken them down into some interesting categories. There’s recommendations, “books to explore,” young adult beach reads, and “compelling true stories”. And even these categories are broken down further into subcategories. For example, the “Recommended Summer Reads” has an intriguing new section called “Blockbusters”. It’s a page where Amazon’s called out 20 of the most highly-anticipated of the summer — including some new books by some very popular authors!

Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King

This Tuesday, Stephen King releases a brand new mystery-thriller in which a killer taunts a retired detective who’s still trying to bring him to justice. This 448-page novel delivers all the rich details of Stephen King’s fiction, as well as a complicated game of cat-and-mouse. King actually flashes to the killer’s point of view, and delivers the narration in a “present tense” style which Booklist said makes the story “feel pretty darn fresh. Big, smashing climax, too.” And Amazon notes on the book’s page that Stephen King is already their #1 most popular author not just in the Horror category, but also for writing Contemporary Fiction!

Personal: A Jack Reacher Novel by Lee Child

Stephen King once called Jack Reacher “the coolest continuing series character now on offer,” and Reacher is also one of the most popular characters among Kindle readers. The character’s creator, Lee Child, became one of the first five authors to ever sell more than one million ebooks on the Kindle, and according to Amazon, he’s currently their #14 most-popular author. At the end of this summer, he’ll be releasing the newest Jack Reacher novel — and this time, it’s Personal. That’s the name of the book, and it follows an assassination attempt on the President of France. “Only one man could have done it. And Reacher is the one man who can find him…..”

Top Secret Twenty-One: A Stephanie Plum Novel by Janet Evanovich

It’s the 21st novel in this best-selling series of comic mysteries, and this one involves a popular used car dealer who’s out on bail — and missing. There’s dead ends and dead bodies, according to the book’s description at Amazon, and no clues for Joe Morelli (described as “the city’s hottest cop.”) Meanwhile, assassins are targetting bounty hunter Ranger (described as “Stephanie’s greatest temptation“), and somewhere in the mix is a crazy grandmother and a pack of feral Chihuahus. This book will finally be released on June 17th, but it’s already become Amazon’s top 10 best-selling books in their Humorous Fiction category! (And of course, Evanoich has also sold more than one million Kindle ebooks.)

If you just can’t wait until June 17th, Evanovich has also just released a new author co-authored with Lee Goldberg — a “Fox and O’Hare” mystery called The Chase!

Invisible by James Patterson and David Ellis

They thought she was crazy, but Emmy Dockery is convinced that hundreds of unsolved kidnappings and murders are connected. She’s an FBI researcher on a leave of absence — who’s now covering the walls of her bedroom with newspaper clippings about the crimes. Has she found the one piece of evidence that connects them all? More inexplicable murders are piling up in a book that Amazon describes as “James Patterson’s scariest, most chilling stand-alone thriller yet.”

Remember, for a shortcut to Amazon’s page, point your browser to

New Books for Summer of 2014

Five Special New eBook Releases

Five New Kindle Ebooks

There’s five brand new ebooks in the Kindle store — and each book, in its own way, represents a special milestone.

Fahrenheit 451
Ray Bradbury’s classic imagines a future where books are banned

It’s been unavailable as an ebook, even though it was written 58 years ago, and is often cited as one of the best books about books. It describes a future where books have been banned — paper burns at a temperature of Fahrenheit 451 — and the Pulitzer Prize committee gave author Ray Bradbury a special citation in 2007.

Farenheit 451 new edition cover

But surprisingly, Ray Bradbury has never actually been a fan of ebooks (or even the internet). The Associated Press remembers that Bradbury once said that e-books “smelled like burned fuel” and called the internet “a big distraction.” But they report that now at the age of 91, “Ray Bradbury is making peace with the future he helped predict,” and today the book made its first appearance in the Kindle store.

Explosive Eighteen
A new Stephanie Plum novel by Janet Evanovich

She’s flying back to Newark from a vacation in Hawaii, when the popular bounty hunter glimpses a crucial photograph that’s needed by the FBI (plus “a ragtag collection of thugs and psychos,” according to the book’s description on Amazon.) There’s trouble at her bail bond agency — and what exactly happened on that Hawaiian vacation? (“It’s complicated,” Stephanie insists…)

Janet Evanovich - Explosive Eighteen cover

68-year-old author Janet Evanovich released the eighteenth book in her “Stephanie Plum” series just last week, and it’s already become one of the top five best-selling ebooks for the Kindle. (In fact, it’s been in the top 100 for 39 days, spending more than a month on the best-seller list before it was even released thanks to a legion of fans who pre-ordered the title!) She’s been writing the series for 17 years, and in August, Evanovich became only the eighth author ever to sell one million copies of her ebooks. (When Amazon’s publicity department contacted the author with the news, her first reaction was a simple one-word interjection. “Wow!”)

A Little Bit of Everything for Dummies
A free eBook that celebrates the best titles in the popular “…for Dummies” series

Those familiar yellow covers have now been insulting us — or empathizing with us — for 20 years. So to celebrate, the publishers of the series have collected 20 chapters from from 20 different books, honoring “the breadth and depth of the For Dummies series.”

A Little Bit of Everything for Dummies yellow cover

There’s Sex for Dummies — one of their best-sellers — and DOS for Dummies, the 1991 book that launched their empire. There’s some self-help titles (like Meditation for Dummies) and even some titles to improve your social skills (like Dating for Dummies), plus some “international” titles like British History for Dummies (and Rugby Union for Dummies).

Guinness World Records 2012
The famous yearly record book finally comes to the Kindle

It’s become a part of our lives since it was first published in 1951 — and yes, it is related to Guinness beer. (The brewery’s managing director had wanted to create a reference book that could settle bar bets.) Its collection of strange triumphs may inspire you or disgust you, but it’s still a grand and compelling collection of all the things that people can do. (Previously, the only the “gamer’s edition” was available for the Kindle, but last week the complete world record book arrived in Amazon’s Kindle Store.)

Guinness Book of World Records 2012 cover

It may not be the stodgy collection of lists you remember, as one reviewer on Amazon reports, since over the decades the famous annual book has apparently started including include more pictures. They bought it as a gift for their family, and concluded that “There seems to be a lot of new records and there really is something for everyone! ”

The Moonlit Mind
A short “Kindle Single” by suspense novelist Dean Koontz

On Monday, horror author Dean Koontz released a brand new story about a child on the run from his mother and stepfather, who’s travelling with an unusually talented dog . Living on the streets (for several years) he’s haunted by the memories of what he saw in their house, and of course the story finds its way to a final confrontation.

Dean Koontz cover for Moonlit Mind

Koontz released the story Monday for just $2.99 as a Kindle Single, and it’s already become the #2 best-selling Single in the Amazon Kindle store. Amazon’s page quotes a reviewer from People, who wrote simply that Koontz “has the power to scare the daylights out of us.”

Two More Million-Selling Kindle Authors!

Stephanie Plum book author Janet Evanovich

The Help author Kathryn Stockett

Amazon announced today that two more authors had crossed the “one million mark” for their ebooks sales in the Kindle Store. But this time it’s different — for a couple of reasons — and there’s also two fascinating stories about the authors who earned the honor.

Amazon’s newest million-selling author is 68-year-old Janet Evanovich — who’s been writing the popular “Stephanie Plum” series of novels for more than 17 years. The world of digital information had barely existed when Evanovich published her first “Plum” book back in 1994 (when she was 51), but it already represented a big change in her career. She’d started her career seven years earlier, publishing her first novel — a romance — back in 1987. But according to Wikipedia, “After finishing her twelfth romance, however, Evanovich realized that she was more interested in writing the action sequences in her novels rather than the sex scenes.”

Looking around for inspiration, Evanovich ultimately based Stephanie Plum on the bounty hunter played by Robert De Niro in the 1988 comedy Midnight Run, and even followed some real-life bounty hunters to learn about their jobs. (Interestingly, Robert De Niro had also followed real-life bounty hunters to prepare for his role — and 22 years later, was preparing a sequel!) And Hollywood is also finally working on a film adaptation of Evanovich’s own Stephanie Plum novels, staring actress Katherine Heigl (from Grey’s Anatomy) in the title role.

“My books have pizza and cussing and sexy guys,” Evanovich later joked about her formula — and it’s earned her a huge audience of loyal followers. Each of the last 11 books in her series debuted at the #1 spot on the New York Times best-seller list, according to Wikipedia. In fact, according to Amazon’s press release, Evanovich’s latest Plum novel, Smokin’ Seventeen, spent over 100 days on the Kindle Best Seller list — even though it was released just 56 days ago! Before the book was even available, Evanovich’s loyal readers had pre-ordered so many copies, the she obtained “best-seller” status for a full 44 days before the book was even released!

When she heard the news about the million-ebook club, Evanovich made sure to thank her readers, saying she was grateful “and looking forward to reaching more milestones with them and with Amazon in the years to come.” And she added that it was a very exciting distinction, saying “I’m thrilled to join such a talented group of writers who’ve also reached this million-copy milestone.” But when Amazon tracked her down for their press release her first reaction was a simple one-word interjection. “Wow!”

Of course, it’s easier to join the million-sellers club when you’ve written a lot of books — but author Kathryn Stockett did it the hard way. She published her first and only book, The Help, just two years ago — and 30 months later, she’d already sold over a million copies in the Kindle Store. “Kathryn Stockett is the first debut novelist to join the Million Club,” announced Amazon’s Vice President of Kindle Content, saying Kindle customers “were highly engaged with her book right from its publication.”

There’s also another interesting statistic about Stockett’s novel: it’s sold around 5 million copies (according to an article published Thursday in an Atlanta newsweekly). That means that Kindle ebooks accounted for almost 20% of her sales! “It’s as exciting to see Kindle readers propel a new author’s career as it is to see them add to the success of a long-time Amazon best-selling author like Janet Evanovich,” noted Amazon’s Vice President of Kindle Content. And it’s an even more inspiring story, since her book’s manuscript was originally rejected more than 50 times.

“After graduating from the University of Alabama with a degree in English and Creative Writing, she moved to New York City where she worked in magazine publishing and marketing for nine years,” Amazon explained in their press release. But there’s another story behind her novel about the maids in a household in Jackson, Mississippi. “I was born in Jackson, Mississippi,” Stockett remembered in an autobiographical article in the Daily Mail, “in 1969, in a time and place where no one was saying, ‘Look how far we’ve come,’ because we hadn’t come very far.” It was just days before her novel was finally published, and she acknowledged her fond memories of the housekeeper who’d looked after her as a child, then writes “I am ashamed to admit that it took me 20 years to realise the irony of that relationship. I’m sure that’s why I wrote my novel, The Help – to find answers to my questions, to soothe my own mind about Demetrie…”

Her story instantly touched the hearts of millions of readers around the world — and her life has been a whirlwind ever since. Last week a movie adaptation of book (starring Emma Stone) appeared in theaters all across America.

And it’s currently the #1 best-selling book in Amazon’s Kindle store.