Saturday, 1 January 2011

Many, many updates - 1 January 2011

Hi everyone,

First I'd like to apologise to all those readers who have stuck with us without any updates for the past three weeks - there have been some terrible problems at my end but I've now managed to get it all sorted out and was unable to get a newsletter up for the last while. However, I can now guarantee you more regular updates and more information. Thanks to everyone who has written in asking if everything is OK. I hope you all had a very merry Christmas and have a very Happy New Year where all your dreams come true! Welcome to all the new Kindlers who have just got a Kindle for Christmas! Now, let's get into the news:

1) 1.6million shipments of the Kindle - Suppliers have leaked information stating that Amazon has shipped over 1.6million Kindles to customers in December, as much as the Apple iPad. Ming-Chi Kuo of Concord Equity Research stated that "Kindle is going to mass market from niche market" and that "iPad cannibalization of Kindle is not obvious." This undoubtedly means that Amazon must be enjoying fantastic sales of the Kindle and investing more into a newer version of the Kindle- we'll keep you updated with news and rumours of the Kindle 4 as soon as we have them.

2) Amazon enables book lending - Amazon has enabled Kindle book lending for its customers in the US, meaning that they are able to lend a book to a friend for up to 14 days while not being able to read it during that time. 14 days does seem to be a bit low to me especially for longer titles and there is yet another caveat - you can only lend a title to a single person ever, meaning that if you have a book that you wish to lend to two people you can only lend it to one of them ever. This feature is not available outside the US at the moment and not all books are eligible.


Free commercial Kindle books:
Some publishers periodically make their books available for free on the Kindle store and we like to keep you updated on these. Here are the latest free commercial Kindle books:

1) Painless by Derek Ciccone
Rated 5 stars average from 1 review
Synopsis: "A fast-paced thriller mixed with a heartwarming story of redemption. A series of ominous incidents make Billy Harper realize there is something very different about Carolyn Whitcomb. But when a rogue organization called Operation Anesthesia learns of Carolyn’s “gifts,” Billy must risk everything to save the life of the little girl who taught him to live again."

2) Wish by Alexandra Bullen
Rated 4.5 stars average from 7 reviews

Synopsis: "For broken-hearted Olivia Larsen, nothing can change the fact that her twin sister, Violet, is gone... until a mysterious, beautiful gown arrives on her doorstep. The dress doesn't just look magical; it is magical. It has the power to grant her one wish, and the only thing Olivia wants is her sister back.With Violet again by her side, both girls get a second chance at life. And as the sisters soon discover, they have two more dresses-and two more wishes left. But magic can't solve everything, and Olivia is forced to confront her ghosts to learn how to laugh, love, and live again.In a breathtaking debut from Alexandra Bullen, WISH asks the question: If you could have anything, what would you wish for?"

Rated 4 stars average from 8 reviews
Synopsis: "Called to North Carolina to consult on the case of an area serial killer, Bowers finds himself caught in a deadly game of cat and mouse. Cunning and lethal, the killer is always one step ahead of the law, and he's about to strike again. It will take all of Bowers's instincts and training to stop 
the man who calls himself... the Illusionist.
Thrilling, chilling, and impossible to put down, The Pawn will hold you in its iron grip until the very last page."

Cheap Kindle Books:
Many publishers have made their books available on Amazon for £1 or less for the new year and holiday season - in fact Amazon is running the 12 days of Kindle with popular books available for only £1.00!
You can find the "12 days of Kindle" full list here which includes 54 books all priced at just £1 until 6th January. In fact, at the moment Amazon has done a fantastic job of rounding most sub-£1 books up as they are the bestsellers - take a look at this list here on the left and see for yourself some of the fantastic deals that are available.

Remind of thousands of free books on project Gutenburg:
Many publishers are trying to make money selling out of copyright books on the Kindle store for under £1 - you can get the complete works of Shakespeare, Jane Austen or read WUthering heights for under £1! It sounds like a bargain, but in fact you can get all these, legally, for free by visiting Project Gutenberg at -  in fact there's over 33,000 books and they list links to other sites which total over 100,000 free books. To get the books on your Kindle find a book you like, click the download tab, download the Kindle version and email it to your [kindlename] email address (you can find this in your account until Kindle management) as an attachment with the word "convert" in the subject line. Switch on wifi on your Kindle and hey presto! There's a free book for you within minutes.

Get free samples:
If you're new to the Kindle, or even if you're not, you may want to know that you can usually read the first couple of chapters on your Kindle for free! Navigate to the book you want on and click "send sample now" to your Kindle. Connect your Kindle to Wifia and 3G and the sample will appear within seconds.

Kindle 2 cases:
This one was a request from one of our readers which I am sure will interest those of you with a previous (not latest) generation Kindle 2. There are still a few cases available at quite reasonable prices - DURAGADGET has a case at £3.99 (reduced from £29.99) + £4.50 shipping which looks very nice. CRAZYPRICESHOP has a case for £6.99 + £4.25 delivery which looks like a simple leather cover which is also nice, and finally there's the more expensive (and in my opinion less practical) Proporta case at £19.99.

That's it for this week - see you next weekend, or earlier if there's some breaking news! With the Consumer Electronics Show next week, let's hope for heaps of e-reader news. See you next weekend and Happy New Year!

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