Thursday, 30 June 2011

Great Kindle Deals Newsletter - Thursday, 30th June 2011

Hello everyone, and welcome to this week's edition of Great Kindle Deals. It's already the end of June and summer is nearly here, so it's time for some great summer reads in this week's cheap and good books. In the news, "Harry Potter" author J.K. Rowling has changed her tune with regards to e-books it seems...

1. Pottermore! - J. K. Rowling, author of the "Harry Potter" series of books and one of the wealthiest women in the UK, has announced that she will be releasing e-book versions of the Harry Potter series starting this Autumn. A website entitled "Pottermore" will be launched in October, "a free website that builds an exciting online experience around the reading of the Harry Potter books." Entry to the site will be free and there will be no subscription charges. Rowling describes it as her chance to give back to her fans. E-books will be a paid-for option on the website.

However, the e-books will ONLY be available via Pottermore, meaning they won't be available for purchase in the Kindle Store. The e-books will be DRM-free meaning they may be put onto any supported device as many times as you want. Whether the Kindle willl be a supported device remains unclear. Understandably, retailers are fuming.

The BBC reports that "retailers have criticised the move, with Waterstone's saying that physical bookshops were "effectively banned" from selling the digital editions. A Pottermore spokesman said: "The decision to make e-books exclusive to the site was to ensure ease of availability across all reading devices and to the widest possible audience."

Cheap books:
1. The Beach by Alex Garland - £3.99
Rated 4 stars average from 5 reviews
Synopsis: "Late at night in a seedy hotel, Richard is drawn into a strange conversation with a fellow guest. Through a narrow strip of mosquito netting he hears for the first time of a secret beach, and island Garden of Eden hidden somewhere in the scattered islands of a Thai marine park. The next morning, Richard finds a map pinned to his door, and the man who put it there has slashed his wrists. The challenge is irresistible, and Richard sets off on a perilous journey in search of Shangri-La."

2. Too Proud to be Bought - £2.19
Rated 4 stars average from 2 reviews
Synopsis: "The humble waitress and the Russian billionaire… Waitress Zara Evans doesn’t belong in glittering high society. That is until she finds herself unexpectedly at an exclusive party and manages to captivate the most soughtafter man in the room – Russian oligarch Nikolai Komarov – by attracting his undivided attention… For Nikolai, there’s something about Zara’s beauty that makes her stand out from the firstclass crowd. Experience has taught him all women have their price, but he has never encountered anyone like Zara – a young woman who is too proud, too independent, too wilful to be bought…"

3. The Emporer's Gold - £1.00
Rated 4.5 stars average from 13 reviews

Synopsis: "July 1805: The armies of France have only to sail to England to complete Napoleon’s domination over Europe. Britain is militarily weak, politically divided, unsettled by her rioting poor. Into this feverish environment comes a dead man. Pulled half-drowned from a shipwreck, his past erased, Tom Roscarrock is put to work for the Comptrollerate-General for Scrutiny and Survey, a shadowy Government bureau. He is thrown into a bewildering world of political intrigue and violence. In France, a plan is underway to shatter the last of England’s stability. In England, the man who recruited Roscarrock has disappeared, his agents keep turning up dead, and reports of a secret French fleet are panicking the authorities.

His life in danger and his motives increasingly suspect, Roscarrock must pursue the complex conspiracy across England and then into the heart of Napoleon’s France, there to confront the greatest mystery of all. The Emperor’s Gold is the first in a series of historical espionage thrillers taken from the newly-uncovered archives of the Comptrollerate-General for Scrutiny and Survey."

Free books:
1. The Awakened [Book 1] by Jason Tesar
Rated 4.5 stars average from 3 reviews
Synopsis: " Over five thousand years ago, a renegade faction of angels abandoned the spiritual realm and began their inhabitation of earth. Worshiped as gods for their wisdom and power, they corrupted the realm of the physical and forever altered the course of history. Amidst the chaos of a dying world, a lone voice foretold the awakening of a warrior who would bring an end to this evil perpetrated against all of creation. But with the cataclysmic destruction of earth and rebirth of humanity, the prophecy went unfulfilled and eventually faded from the memory of our kind—until now!"

2. Chief Cook and Bottle Washer by Rita Hestand
Rated 5 stars average from 1 review
Synopsis: " Emma Smith hadn't been straight with her new boss, but he hadn't given her much of a chance to explain. Trapped in her own lies and uncertainties Emma was running in fear of losing her baby. Deke Travers, oldest son on the 4 Bar None Ranch, needed one thing to make his life more peaceful, his brothers to settle down and get with the business of ranching. There was only one solution, marry them off to country girls. And Emma will be the first bride on the 4 Bar None Ranch."

3. The Arrival by Nicole MacDonald
Rated 4 stars average from 5 reviews
Synopsis: " Cat, Kassie, Sian and Loi are anything but damsels in distress. Fed up with a lack of decent male specimens they cast a love spell in the hopes of finding their soul-mates. And inadvertently land themselves on another planet.

The Arrival, follows the girls' adventures as they stumble through a foreign and often hostile world where humans are NOT at the top of the food chain. Friendships are forged and love teeters on the horizon while the threat of civil war looms thanks to the girls' very unexpected 'gifts'. Will the girls master these gifts in time to survive a war in which, not only are they the ultimate weapons, but also the ultimate prize?"

I'll see you next week with more Great Kindle Deals.

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Great Kindle Deals Newsletter - Thursday, 23rd June 2011

Hi everyone, I trust you're having a great week and welcome to this week's edition of Great Kindle Deals. This week we're taking a look into e-book spam, as well as having our usually cheap and free books.

The News (Extended Feature) - Spam Books:
Several news outlets have been reporting about the increase in "spam books," books which essentially offer no relevant content and are in low-quality English.

"TheGlobeAndMail" reports that instead of people writing these books themselves, "they are built using something known as Private Label Rights, or PLR content, which is information that can be bought very cheaply online then reformatted into a digital book."

Another technique that many are using is to use automated programs which generate books randomly with only a few keywords: these are usually non-fiction titles.

Perhaps the worst case however is when one of these people publishes a book which us not their own work. Several cases have been found where someone has simply copy and pasted an entire book and submitted it under a different title to the original. This has garnered the fake book good reviews, yet gives no percentage of that to the original author.

So, what's your opinion: have you encountered any of these spam books? We encourage you contact us at and to rate the said book with a 1 star rating and explain the situation in the comments. Hopefully measures like this will cut out ebook spam. Of course if you feel a book is a spam book you can always contact Amazon via email or phone reporting the book, as well as requesting a refund.

Other news: Indie author sells 1million titles - 7 authors have already sold 1 million copies of their books on the Kindle store and now the 8th joins then - John Locke. The difference being that John Locke is a completely independant author who has no backing from a publisher and has sold over 1million copies. A very big well done to him. As a credit to him, you can fund one of his books in this week's "cheap books" section.

Cheap books:
1. Vegas Moon by John Locke - £0.49
Rated 5 stars average from 3 reviews
Synopsis: "In order to save his own life, Donovan Creed signs on as bodyguard to the most famous gambler in Las Vegas history, Jim “Lucky” Peters. Lucky, worth millions, has hit a losing streak and must raise a lot of cash in a short period of time from some of the world’s creepiest people. It doesn’t take long for Creed to learn that the person who holds the key to his survival is none other than Lucky’s smokin’ hot wife, Gwen, who has secrets of her own.

Preliminary reviewers term Vegas Moon “Hilarious!” “Uproarious!” “Funniest book in the series!” With Vegas Moon, “Locke hasn’t just hit a home run, he’s hit it over the fence, out of the park, and into the comedy hall of fame!”"

2. Shadow of the Serpent by David Ashton - £0.94
Rated 5 stars average from 8 reviews
Synopsis: "McLevy is one of the great psychological creations and Ashton is the direct heir to Robert Louis Stevenson' - Brian Cox, star of the BBC Radio 4 McLevy play'David Ashton's writing is excellent, his characters thoroughly convincing, and his narrative grabs you . . . and doesn't let you go' - The Sherlock Holmes Society of London'An intriguing Victorian detective story . . . elegant and convincing' - The Times Known as the father of forensics and a likely influence on Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, real-life police inspector James McLevy is here reinvented by David Ashton in a thrilling mystery, Shadow of the Serpent. 1880, Edinburgh, Election fever grips the city. But while the rich and educated argue about politics, in the dank wynds of the docks it's a struggle just to stay alive. When a prostitute is brutally murdered, disturbing memories from thirty years ago are stirred in McLevy who is soon lured into a murky world of politics, perversion and deception - and the shadow of the serpent."

3. How to be a woman by Caitlin Moran - £4.19 
Rated 5 stars average from 15 reviews
Synopsis: " 1913 – Suffragette throws herself under the King’s horse.1969 – Feminists storm Miss World. NOW – Caitlin Moran rewrites The Female Eunuch from a bar stool and demands to know why pants are getting smaller. There’s never been a better time to be a woman: we have the vote and the Pill, and we haven’t been burnt as witches since 1727. However, a few nagging questions do remain… Why are we supposed to get Brazilians? Should you get Botox? Do men secretly hate us? What should you call your vagina? Why does your bra hurt? And why does everyone ask you when you’re going to have a baby? Part memoir, part rant, Caitlin Moran answers these questions and more in How To Be A Woman – following her from her terrible 13th birthday (‘I am 13 stone, have no friends, and boys throw gravel at me when they see me’) through adolescence, the workplace, strip-clubs, love, fat, abortion, TopShop, motherhood and beyond."

Free books:
1. Thirst by Claire Farrell
Rated 4 stars average from 7 reviews
Synopsis: "Ava Delaney calls herself a hybrid - a living, breathing human who happens to have vampire poison running through her veins. The only thing greater than her thirst for human blood is her capacity for guilt. She does her best to avoid the human world, for everyone's sake.

When Ava accidentally enslaves a human while saving him from a vampire, she realises she has to look for help setting him free. Despite her misgivings, she expands her world but finds herself dragged into a possible vampire civil war. With the help of some new friends with ambiguous loyalties, she tries to find a way to keep her human, and herself, alive.

At approx. 45,000 words, Thirst is the first in a series of paranormal novellas. Now comes with preview chapters of Taunt (Ava Delaney #2)."

2. Be Assertive: The How to Guide
Rated 4 stars average from 5 reviews
Synopsis: "Have you noticed that assertive people tend to get more of what they want out of life? Learning to be more assertive can help you improve relationships, get promoted, reduce stress, and gain respect. Download “Be Assertive: The How-To Guide” now and get simple, winning strategies for being more assertive in your daily life.
With this Vook you’ll learn effective ways to become a more assertive communicator in all facets of life, in eight engaging chapters. First you’ll learn what assertiveness is and how to use assertive language in all of your verbal interactions. Then you’ll learn how to become more confident and poised with your body language and voice, and how to deal assertively with difficult friends, family members, coworkers and bosses. Finally, you’ll learn how to navigate pushy customers and service people and explore creative ways to respond when you’re met with a “No” and you want to hear a “Yes.” Helpful tips throughout provide additional strategies to improve your communications at home, at work, and in your free time."

3. Clutter-free home Living: The How-To
Rated 3.5 stars average from 5 reviews
Synopsis: "Wish you could get organized and STAY organized at home? Introducing “Clutter-Free Home Living: The How-To Guide," a Vook with easy instructions that will help you establish a cleaner, clearer living space, and save you time and money. Download it now and put an end to the cycle of constant clutter!
Researchers have found that we lose about a year of our lives looking for items we need. A clutter-free home not only makes you and your guests feel more comfortable, it also makes the things you need easier to find, literally saving you time and money. In eight chapters “Clutter-Free Home Living: The How-To Guide” highlights the important reasons to get your house in order and how to do it. You’ll learn step-by-step how you can better organize areas that tend to attract clutter, such as your kitchen, bathroom, and closets, putting you back on track. You’ll also discover how to organize items such as gadgets and electronics that tend to go missing when you need them most, and how to purge the items that you don’t really need.
Get this Vook and take control of your home and life from now on!"
I hope you enjoyed this week's newsletter. We'll have more great deals and free books to keep you going next week.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Great Kindle Deals Newsletter - Tuesday, 14th June 2011

Hello everyone, I hope you are having a very good week. As the Summer edges closer and closer and the nights get shorter, you have more time to read in the natural daylight and may even want a few summer reads for the beach  - we have some great free and cheap deals you'll love.

Father's Day
Amazon is offering a special deal on Kindle cases for Father's Day. If you purchase any Kindle Wifi or Kindle 3g, you get 20% off the official Kindle cases. This is one of the very few times that official Kindle items are on sale so you may want to grab yourself a bargain. A Kindle is one of the most perfect gifts for Dad and with thousands of free books and cheap chart books, it is the gift that just keeps on giving.

1. Kindle only children's series - Thebookseller reports: "Agency 1454 has developed a new interactive children's adventure series that will be published exclusively on the Kindle worldwide. It is thought to be the first time a children's series has been produced solely for digital release.
BookSurfers, written by the children's writer David Gatward, is aimed at nine to 12-year-olds and is based on the classic novels Treasure Island and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The four Booksurfers, Ryan, Jake, Becca and Harriet use a bespoke digital gadget called The Nautilus to jump into classic adventure stories with the reader able to use hyperlinks to connect to the corresponding points in the original classic." The first 2 books are currently on sale for £3.67. Take a look!

Cheap books:
1. Troubled by Scott Nicholson - £0.70
Synopsis: "When twelve-year-old Freeman Mills arrives at Wendover, a group home for troubled children, it’s a chance for a fresh start. But second chances aren’t easy for Freeman, the victim of painful childhood experiments that gave him the ability to read other people’s minds.

Little does Freeman know that his transfer was made at the request of Dr. Richard Kracowski, whose research into the brain’s electrical properties is revealing new powers of the human mind. Kracowski is working for a secret society called the Trust, but also has his own agenda in exploring the nature of the soul. His experiments have an unexpected side effect, though. The electromagnetic fields used in his experiments are summoning the ghosts of the patients who died at Wendover back when it was a psychiatric ward."

2. The Emperor's Gold by Robert Wilton - £1.00
Rated 4.5 stars average from 10 reviews
Synopsis: "July 1805: The armies of France have only to sail to England to complete Napoleon’s domination over Europe. Britain is militarily weak, politically divided, unsettled by her rioting poor. Into this feverish environment comes a dead man. Pulled half-drowned from a shipwreck, his past erased, Tom Roscarrock is put to work for the Comptrollerate-General for Scrutiny and Survey, a shadowy Government bureau. He is thrown into a bewildering world of political intrigue and violence. In France, a plan is underway to shatter the last of England’s stability. In England, the man who recruited Roscarrock has disappeared, his agents keep turning up dead, and reports of a secret French fleet are panicking the authorities.

His life in danger and his motives increasingly suspect, Roscarrock must pursue the complex conspiracy across England and then into the heart of Napoleon’s France, there to confront the greatest mystery of all. The Emperor’s Gold is the first in a series of historical espionage thrillers taken from the newly-uncovered archives of the Comptrollerate-General for Scrutiny and Survey."

3. Mommy, May I? by A. K. Alexander - £0.69
Rated 5 stars average from 3 reviews
Synopsis: "Helena Shea is putting her life back together. Once a highly paid supermodel and now the owner and CEO of her own modeling agency, a recent bitter scandal that nearly destroyed Helena and the daughter she gave up for adoption years ago seems to be settling down. With a chance to have a relationship with her daughter, Frankie, and the development of a center for wayward young mothers that Helena is funding, it looks as if life is turning around for mother and daughter. However...


A killer raised amidst evil and seeking revenge is targeting Helena. Leaving a trail of blood in his wake, this sadist plans his return into Helena's life. When the madman abducts Frankie, Helena fears she might never see her daughter again. Seeking help from the journalist who almost destroyed her, an FBI agent with suspicions toward her, as well as her ex-lover who is also Frankie’s father, Helena must find the strength to fight past addictions and see her daughter back home again—alive.

Prepare to lock your doors. This eerie thriller will have you up late into the night looking over your shoulder. It is as equally compelling as it is disturbing."

Free books:
1. Falling Star by Diana Dempsey
Rated 5 stars average from 6 reviews
Synopsis: "For customers who enjoy Emily Griffin, Jennifer Weiner, and Sophie Kinsella: The page-turner for every woman who’s ever had better days …

Natalie Daniels’ husband just dumped her. Her boss is scheming to replace her. And she’s falling in love with her sexy Australian TV news agent – who’s about to propose to somebody else.

What’s a woman to do? Dig deep and show what she’s made of – which just might land her both the job and the man of her dreams."

2. Fifth Avenue by Christopher Smith
Rated 4 stars average from 31 reviews
Synopsis: "Look beneath all the power and all the wealth that represents New York City's Fifth Avenue, and you'll find greed, blood, revenge. In the international best-selling thriller "Fifth Avenue," each intermingles within a revered society that is unprepared for what's in store for it when one man finally strikes in an effort to destroy another man for murdering his wife thirty-one years ago.

Louis Ryan is that man. George Redman, his wife, two daughters and their close friends are his targets. Both men are self-made billionaires who came from nothing to stake their claim to Fifth Avenue. But when Louis Ryan hires an international assassin to literally rip the Redman family apart, a series of events that can't be stopped catapults them all through a fast-paced, hard-edged thriller in which nobody is safe. "

3. World Kitchen: World Recipes
Rated 4 stars avergae from 1 review
Synopsis: "Get 20 great recipes from our bestselling World Kitchen series -- each triple-tested in the Murdoch Books Test Kitchen for cooking success every time!

Recipes include Italian Wild Mushroom Bruschetta, Spanish Potato Omelette, Moroccan Beef Tagine with Okra and Tomatoes, French Raspberry Soufflé and many more.

The World Kitchen series takes you on a culinary journey exploring the influences of geography, climate, culture and tradition that have shaped some of the world's most popular cuisines."

That's it for this week. See you next week for more Great Kindle Deals and Happy Father's Day for this weekend!

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

Great Kindle Deals Newsletter - Tuesday, 7th June 2011

Hello everyone, welcome to the latest edition of Great Kindle Deals. There's no news on the Kindle front this week, so instead we've some Kindle tips and tricks, and the usual free and cheap books.

Kindle Tips and Tricks:
1. Web browsing - Got your Kindle with you when out and about? If you have a 3G version you can access web pages on it wherever you are. Make sure 3G is switched on, then go to Menu > Experimental > Web Browser. The browser is basic but if you need it, it's better than nothing.

2. Two games on your Kindle - On the main page with your book listings press Alt, SHift and M at the same time and you can play minesweeper, instructions are at the bottom of that page. Press G and you can play noughts and crosses.

3. Instant dictionary definitions - Use the arrow keys to find a word you dont know, place it over the word and at the bottom (or top) a definition will come up. Press return and a full definition will be expanded, then press back to get back to your original book.

4. Turn pages automatically - A tip from TechRadar: "Can't be bothered pressing the next page button? Trigger the text-to-speech function (press the Aa button, then turn on text to speech) and then turn the volume down until you can't hear anything. Pages will now turn automatically... eventually"

Cheap books:

1. Catch Your Death (for Fans of Dan Brown and Stieg Larsson) - £0.95
Rated 5 stars average from 3 reviews
Synopsis: "A secret conspiracy. A killer virus. A race to save the world.

Imagine if Dan Brown, Steig Larsson and Michael Crichton sat down together to write a fast-paced medical conspiracy thriller set in the English countryside, featuring evil scientists, stone-cold killers, a deadly virus and a beautiful but vulnerable Harvard professor.

That's CATCH YOUR DEATH, the new novel from Louise Voss and Mark Edwards, the writing team behind the Amazon Top 50 thriller KILLING CUPID.

Esteemed virologist Kate Maddox thought she was escaping to a new life. But before she can face the future she must deal with the ghosts of the past.
20 years ago, Kate was a volunteer at a research unit in the English countryside where scientists experimented to find a cure for the common cold. That summer, Kate fell in love with a handsome young doctor, Stephen. But her stay at the unit ended in Stephen's tragic death and Kate fled to Boston and a new life at Harvard.

Now, Kate is back in England and on the run again – this time, from her cruel husband – and trying to find a fresh start for her and her young son. But a chance encounter with Stephen’s twin brother, Paul, sets her on a terrifying path of discovery. What really happened at the Cold Research Unit two decades ago?

As Kate and Paul travel across England in search of the answers, they are unaware they are being hunted. Pursued by both her estranged husband and a psychopathic killer who has an unhealthy obsession with his quarry, Kate must fight to solve the puzzles of the past – uncovering a sickening betrayal and a truth she never dreamed possible."
Free books:

2. Life and Laughing: My Story by Michael McIntyre - £3.99
Rated 5 stars average from 167 reviews
Synopsis: "Michael McIntyre has become Britain�s biggest comedy star. His debut stand-up DVD, Live & Laughing, was the fastest selling of all time, only to be eclipsed by his second, Hello Wembley, that sold over 1.4 million copies and was the 2009 Christmas number one. He hosts his own BAFTA nominated BBC1 series, Michael McIntyre�s Comedy Roadshow, and won the British Comedy Award for Best Live Stand-up in 2009 following his record breaking fifty-four date Arena tour.
But how did he get there?
Michael reveals all in his remarkably honest and hilarious autobiography Life & Laughing. His showbiz roots, his appalling attempts to attract the opposite sex, his fish-out-of-water move from public to state school and his astonishing journey from selling just one ticket at the Edinburgh Festival to selling half a million tickets on his last tour. Michael�s story is riveting, poignant, romantic and above all very, very funny."

3. The Confession by John Grisham - £3.59
Rated 4 stars average from 71 reviews
Synopsis: "An innocent man is days from execution.Only a guilty man can save him. Travis Boyette is a murderer. In 1998, in the small East Texas city of Sloan, he abducted, raped, and strangled a popular high-school cheerleader. He buried her body so that it would never be found, then watched and waited as police and prosecutors arrested Donte Drumm, a local football star with no connection to the crime. Tried, convicted and sentenced, Drumm was sent to death row: his fate had been decided.Nine years later, Donte Drumm is four days from execution. Over 400 miles away in Kansas, Travis faces a fate of his own: an inoperable brain tumour will soon deliver the end. Reflecting on his miserable life, he decides to do what’s right. After years of silence he is ready to confess. But how can a guilty man convince lawyers, judges and politicians that they’re about to execute an innocent man?"

Free books: 
1. Murder on the Mind
Rated 5 stars average from 1 review
Synopsis: "Jeff Resnick hardly knew his well-heeled half-brother. But after suffering a fractured skull in a vicious mugging, he reluctantly accepts the fact that he has a long and brutal recovery to face—and his closest of kin can provide him with the time and place to do it.

Now, Jeff is haunted by unexplained visions of a heinous crime—a banker, stalked, killed, and eviscerated like a ten-point buck. When Matt Sumner’s murder is discovered, a still-recovering Jeff realizes this was what he had seen. Jeff must not only convince himself of his new-found psychic ability, but also his skeptical brother Richard Alpert. Since Sumner was Richard’s banker, both brothers have a stake in finding out what happened. With Richard’s reluctant help, Jeff’s investigation leads him to Sumner’s belligerent family and hard-nosed business associates, none of whom want him snooping around.

When Jeff discovers a second victim, he knows he must relentlessly chase his quarry even if it means risking his brother’s life."

2. Guilty as Sin
Rated 3.5 stars average from 6 reviews
Synopsis: " When seventeen-year-old Danielle Levy goes missing one lunchtime, DS Wendy Knight and DCI Jack Culverhouse believe they have a routine case on their hands. When a prominent local businessman is found dead in his warehouse, however, the case takes a whole new disturbing turn as Knight and Culverhouse begin to unravel the connections between the two cases which lead to a dark and disturbing secret."

3. L.A. Nore: The Collected Stories
Rated 5 stars average from 1 review
Synopsis: "Rockstar Games has partnered with Mulholland Books to publish a collection of short fiction expanding the world of the newest groundbreaking achievement in storytelling: the interactive crime thriller L.A. Noire. 1940s Hollywood, murder, deception and mystery take center stage as readers reintroduce themselves to characters seen in L.A. Noire. Explore the lives of actresses desperate for the Hollywood spotlight; heroes turned defeated men; and classic Noir villains. Readers will come across not only familiar faces, but familiar cases from the game that take on a new spin to tell the tales of emotionally torn protagonists, depraved schemers and their ill-fated victims. With original short fiction by Megan Abbott, Lawrence Block, Joe Lansdale, Joyce Carol Oates, Francine Prose, Jonathan Santlofer, Duane Swierczynski and Andrew Vachss, L.A. NOIRE: THE COLLECTED STORIES breathes new life into a time-honored American tradition, in an exciting anthology that will appeal to fans of suspense and gamers everywhere."

See you next week!