Daily Links: 50 Shades is back and more

First, some movie news: Fifty Shades of Grey is back on top of the bestseller lists again because of the movie trailer.  From Publisher’s Weekly

Also movie related, from Variety, Anne McCaffrey’s The Dragonriders of Pern series has been optioned for film.  (I am not holding my breath; I am still waiting for a film version of Robert Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land.)

Like MOOCs? How about a free course in photojournalism from MIT? From LifeHacker

From Android Central, Amazon’s AppStore now available in more countries.

Daily Links are interesting links I discover as I go about my online day. The frequency and number of links posted depend upon the daily news.

Daily Links: 90% of Public Libraries now lend e-books

From Digital Book World, American Library Association announces 90% of Public Libraries now lend e-books.

From a story in Publishers Weekly, Comixolgy to offer  DRM-free backup copies.

And a couple of e-book finds of the day from my TBR list in the Daily Deals: one of John Brunner’s fascinating SF titles, The Shockwave Rider, and, Midsummer Moon, a humoruous romance by Laura Kinsale (one with a hedgehog, no less!).

Daily Links are interesting links I discover as I go about my online day. The frequency and number of links posted depend upon the daily news.

Free Comic Books

weird_mysteriesLooking for Free Comic books?

How about free access to over 15,000 Golden Age Comics, including some interesting pre-code horror comics from the Digital Comic Museum?

Or if you want a great deal on something a little more recent, how about a trial subscription to Marvel Unlimited for only 99 cents for the first month?

Found via Open Culture – which happens to be one of the best resources for fascinating free public domain materials on the web. Hint: You should really subscribe to their feed. 🙂

Is Kindle Unlimited worth the price?

Amazon has introduced the Kindle Unlimited (KU for short) subscription service and it seems to have created quite a buzz.


It offers unlimited access to over 600,000 Kindle books and over 2,000 audiobooks with Whispersync for Voice. You can keep up to ten books at a time and there are no due dates. You can read your Kindle Unlimited books on any Kindle device or any of free Kindle reading apps.

For new subscribers, there is a free 30-day trial. That also includes a free Audible membership for up to three months. The Kindle Unlimited subscription includes 3 free Audible books (even if you are already a subscriber).

  • If you like to own books
  • If you like to read bestsellers
  • If you read very few indie published books
  • If you only read a few books every month
  • If you read mostly free books or classics
  • If you mostly buy books on sale
  • You already have an Audible membership
  • If you are already a Prime member and satisfied with one free book rental per month.

In that case, Kindle Unlimited may not be a good value for you.

The answer may be yes if the following is true:

  • If you need to read on e-ink only
  • If you read mostly indie authors
  • If you read lots of short stories and short non-fiction books
  • If you want more than one book per month from KOLL
  • If you don’t have an actual Kindle or Kindle Fire device (read on app, tablet, computer or phone)
  • If you use Whispersync to switch back and forth with audio for a lot of books
  • If you do not re-read books or do not want to own every book you read.
  • If you spend a lot each month on books that are also in the KOLL Library.

But what if you find that points from both lists apply to your situation?

First, browse or search available books  to see the offerings.

Compare the list of books in the KU program to to your Wishlist or TBR (To Be Read) list.

If you already subscribe to Scribd or Oyster, compare the lists of available books on those services to see which one offers you the most value.

Lastly, tale a look at your monthly book budget, your spending history and what types of book you are reading to see if the service is cost effective.

A case study:

I am going to use myself as a case study. 🙂 Here’s the background: I am an avid reader whose reading time is more constrained than I would like. I have both e-ink Kindles and Kindle Fire tablets. I like to own books and re-read favorites. I prefer to read on e-ink versus a tablet or phone.  I am already a Prime Member and also have an Audible membership. I rarely use Whispersync. I do have an Open Library membership. I also have a membership to Scribd (a gift), although not being able to use it on an e-ink device limits its usefulness for me – I haven’t yet finished one Scribd book.

Not including re-reads, I generally read 1-2 full length books per week (fiction and non-fiction). I also read serials, short stories and short non-fiction works. Since I only read e-books any more, I am replacing my print copies of old favorites with e-books. 

I like to read a variety of books.I read almost every kind of fiction, but primarily enjoy read classics, mysteries and thrillers, SF and horror. In non-fiction, I enjoy history, and anthropology, self-help, spirituality,motivational reading and how-to books. More than half of the authors I read are indies and small press titles. Many of the short stories, non-fiction booklets and new authors I read come from trying books that are offered for free. If I like them, I then generally buy new and backlist titles of the author’s works. I refuse to pay more than $9.99 for a license to read an e-book and pay close attention to sales like the Kindle Daily Deal and price reductions for bestseller and backlist purchases. I frequently try new authors via the KOLL library, but there are months that I actually forget to borrow my free book.

I went back and looked at my book purchases for the month of June. Most of the paid books I purchased last month are NOT available as part of the Kindle Unlimited service. Two of my June purchases, Dead Spots and Trail of Dead, were originally KOLL borrows that I liked so much I went back and purchased copies to own when they were on sale. Most of the free books I picked up that month were gardening books for my container gardening project that I probably would not have gotten if they weren’t free.

I concluded that, at least for me, I probably would not have saved any money in the program. Because I already have access to most of the books already (either through KOLL or as free promotional books), I feel that it is doubtful the Kindle Unlimited program would be worth the extra cost to me.

I do intend to look back over a few more months’ past purchases to see if that data looks any different. And, I intend to watch my purchases over the next few weeks to see if a perhaps a subscription might seem to be worthwhile. Being able to read on and e-ink device would be a big plus. After all, Amazon is offering a 30 day free trial, so I can always change my mind. 🙂

What about you? Is the Kindle Unlimited program attractive to you?

Daily Links: Darwin’s Complete Galapagos Library Online

From ArsTechnica, Charles Darwin’s Complete Galapagos library is posted online.

Amazon is testing a new subscription service called Kindle Unlimited via The Digital Reader. (There will be lots more to come on this story!)

Daily Links are interesting links I discover as I go about my online day. The frequency and number of links posted depend upon the daily news.




Refurbished Kindle Paperwhite $85 Deal of the Day

paperwhiteToday’s Kindle deal of the day is a Certified Refurbished Kindle Paperwhite (current generation) with special offers for only $85.00.

My Paperwhite has become my go to ereader. The front lit screen is easy to read on and is a very bright white when compared to the screens of the other Kindles or either one of my Nook e-ink ereaders. It is great for reading in bed without an external light! 🙂

Digital Book Day site extends free book portal for one more day

Yesterday, July 14, 2014, the free book event being offered by DigitalBookDay.com came to a screeching halt when the server crashed–and crashed again. Over 400 e-books were available for free.

Today, there is a post on the website announcing that they will be keeping the site open another day due to the server crashes that kept many people from accessing the free books. Readers are cautioned to double check book prices as all authors may not be able to keep their books free for an extra day.

According to the site, even with the server crashes, over 10,000 readers were able to download over 70,00 books.

According to the blog stats on my post yesterday, there was a huge amount of interest in this free book event. 🙂


Updated: Digital Book Day: Free e-books July 14, 2014

Digital Book DayMonday, July 14, 2014 (Bastille Day) is the first digital book day, according to DigitalBookDay.com. It is intended to be a “day to celebrate readers, stories, and the authors who create them.” The site is offering links to over 400 free books on hosted various sites. There is a wide range of genres represented:  historical, romance, science-fiction, fantasy, mystery, non-fiction, thrillers, and young adult. Represented are books from authors from around the world, including C.J. Lyons, Bob Mayer, Linda Welch and many, many more.

PLEASE NOTE:  The book links will not be live until July 14, 2014. Without being able to click through, it was not clear to me what format the free books are being offered in (mobi, epub or PDF).

There is also a link on the site to sign up to be notified of future free digital book events.

Update: The Digital Book Day site seems to be down. I am getting a database connection error.

Update 2: Evidently, the server crashed. There is a post here on Google plus where authors have been invited to post links to their free books. Authors are welcome to post links to their free books below in the comments.

Daily Links: Free Kindle e-book and audiobook pair

From The Ebook Reader, this month’s free kindle e-book and audiobook bundle for users of the Amazon Kindle App.

From Make Use Of, an interesting infographic on breaking the cycle of e-book theft.

Daily Links are interesting links I discover as I go about my online day. The frequency and number of links posted depend upon the daily news.