Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hypocrite Is My Name

On October 23rd 2011 I broke down and gave a publisher far more money for an e-book, then I ever should have, when I purchased Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson. I know I seem like a hypocrite after being blusterous on how I would NEVER purchase an e-book over $9.99 but the thought of not reading this book won me over. Of course I could have purchased the hardcover book for probably a bit less then the $16.99 I paid for the Apple iBooks version but then that would defeat my personal push to only read e-books. Am I happy I paid the big bucks for the book? No, not really. I felt pretty much forced into it; thanks greedy publishers!

So far the e-book is extremely interesting. Mr. Jobs was a very complicated person. Once I finish the e-book, I will place my review here.

*This post has been updated as of 9/8/2015 and the current price for Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson is now $12.99. Still expensive in my mind.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Moon Rock Make Out Session Ends Badly for Thief - REVIEW

How could you go wrong with a title like ‘Sex on the Moon’? Okay to be fair the full title of the book is’ ‘Sex on the Moon: The Amazing Story Behind the Most Audacious Heist in History’. It just screams READ ME! Right? So, I did, and what a story. The book is written by the author of the ‘Accidental Billionaire’, Ben Mezrich, which was turned into the film ‘The Social Network’. In ‘Sex on the Moon’ Mezrich introduces us to another young up and comer named Thad Roberts who is ready to become the first man on Mars. Well that is before he gets the crazy idea to steal some Moon rocks from NASA and sell them over the Internet! Oh the crazy things kids do for love.

The story is engaging as we see Thad’s spirited nature come out during his time at NASA. He sneaks his way on to a shuttle simulation test and gains favor with many of the up and coming scientists at NASA. His future looks bright until he decides to try and impress a girl and make a little money for himself. As I mentioned the story is intriguing and Mezrich unfolds the story in a fairly logical and orderly fashion. However the style of writing is a bit sophomore-ish. Lines like ‘…as she touched his muscular chest while standing next to him…’ just screams cheesiness, and for me, took away all sense of believability at times. Really did this woman really think that, at that particular moment in time? Why does something like that even have to be mentioned in a non-fiction book like this? I picked up a non-fiction book to read not a romance novel!

Overall the book was a good and interesting read. I always remembered reading or hearing something about this story and had pretty much chalked it up as an urban legend. Now I know differently. How does the title fit into the book? Well I will let the reader find out for themselves. Those Moon rocks will never be the same.

Friday, August 19, 2011

60,000 vote for Top 100 Sci-Fi & Fantasy Books

Last week NPR released a great list of 100 of the best Science Fiction and Fantasy books. Over 5,000 books were nominated and 60,000 people voted. The top book? 'The Lord of the Rings" was the #1 winner. I have to say I am happy with that choice. The runner up was 'The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy', with 'Ender's Game' coming in at #3. I wonder how many are currently in e-book format. Might be interesting to find out.

There is a wide variety of books selected in the list. It is an interesting read. I found several books I have never heard of and now would like to read. Hopefully the list will spur others to do the same, or maybe, even do a re-read of an old favorite.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Cost of History on the Rise?

Does it seem to you that the overall prices for history e-books are on the rise? Most of the history e-books on my wish list are now ranging from $12.99 up to $19.99 with the average cost around $14.99. Are the publishers trying to push the overall non-fiction e-book price up past their recent $12.99 big 5 price point in a greedy attempt to make more money?

Of course we know that Penigun Publishing is in for the price gouging, but even Random House and Simon and Schuster have gone from $12.99 to the higher priced non-fiction e-books. Such a shame, there are so many other reasonably priced e-books out there to read (Amazon's recent Sunshine Deals proved that) that these higher e-book prices just keep many of us e-book readers away.

Here are a few of the e-books on my wish list that I will be avoiding due to their current pricing. *I just saw that the Ann Coulter e-book has dropped from $14.99 to $12.99 this last week.

And here is one that I have really been wanting to read for awhile now. The price has been up to $16.99 and is now $13.99. I am still holding out for a lower price! Sorry Random House, no sale!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Simon & Schuster Slaps Paris and Customers

David McCullough is a master at bringing history alive. I have always looked forward to any new release by him, however since I have gone exclusively e-book only these days I was once again appalled and shocked at publisher's Simon & Schuster's insane pricing for McCullough's latest, 'The Greater Journey - Americans in Paris'. Really Simon & Schuster's? $19.99? Have you gone MAD? Do you NOT want people to read this e-book? Heck the audiobook in abridged form is cheaper on Amazon then the e-book is!

I am seeing this a current trend by the big publishers with their non-fiction e-books. I have seen prices jump from $12.99 up to $14.99 and now we are hitting the $19.99 mark.

Thank goodness for Amazon's Sunshine Deals. I will reward the publishers and authors who have reasonable priced e-books with my business. There are plenty of other e-books in the sea!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Save Cash When Buying iBooks in June

Update - June 10, 2011 - Looks like Best Buy has extended their 15% off deal on iTunes gift cards out until June 18th, 2011!

Attention United States readers!!!!

Target is selling iTunes and iBook gift cards for 20% until Saturday June 11th. Best Buy is selling iTunes and iBook gift cards for 15% until Saturday June 11th. Staples will have a 'buy 2 $25 iTunes cards and get $10 off during the week of June 12th, 2011 - June 18th 2011.

What a great way to save some money if you purchase iBooks. Remember you can use either an iTunes gift card or iBooks gift card to purchase iBooks from Apple. Plus they make a great gift for grads and dads!

I also would like to point out that with the newest computer iTunes update you can now browse and purchase iBooks right on your computer. Before you could only browse the iBookstore on your iPad or iPhone.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Amazon Spreads Sunshine On Ebook Readers

I am sure many have already heard about or seen Amazon's hot new 'Sunshine Deals' offer but if you haven't head over to Amazon quick, the offers end June 15th, 2011. There are some great deals, on some terrific e-books, with prices starting at .99 cents up to $2.99.

I have already picked up several deals that I had on my wish list. Below are some of the e-books I purchased. Most were originally priced at around $9.99.

I hope publishers take notice and realize that lower e-book prices can generate more sales and create good-will towards their e-book customers! Now if we could get some of those crazy $19.99 e-book prices to come down! Yes Penguin Publishing I am talking about you!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

'Foundation' is Key to a Great Sci-Fi Read

I have always been fond of Isaac Asimov’s ‘Foundation’ series. Like the ‘Lord of the Rings’ I have come back to the ‘Foundation’ books several times over my last 50 years. Although I have read the original trilogy I never finished the entire 7 book series. I am currently on ‘Foundation and Earth’ and am enjoying it so far.

My current excitement for the 'Foundation' series was re-energized this last week (May 9th - 15th, 2011) when the web site iO9 took an in depth look into the series. It is an excellent read, written by Josh Wimmer and Alasdair Wilkins, and I wanted to share it will all ‘Foundation’ fans.

Now since this blog focuses on e-books I wanted to also point out the current 'Foundation' books that are available in e-book format. Not all of them are unfortunately. Luckily the first 3 books are available in both Kindle and ePub format.

Foundation -

Foundation and Empire -

Second Foundation

'Foundation’s Edge' and 'Foundation and Earth' are both available in ePub format on the Apple iBooks store but I could not find Prelude to Foundation or Forward the Foundation in e-book format anywhere.  All e-book editions are currently price reasonable at $7.99.

Now here are the links to a VERY interesting take on all seven of the Asimov written 'Foundation' books. Enjoy!

Day two featured - ‘Foundation and Empire’ - ‘In which events take a generally darker turn: Foundation and Empire by Isaac Asimov’ - 
Day three featured - ‘Second Foundation’ - ‘Mind games and mysteries abound in Isaac Asimov’s Second Foundation’ - 
Day four featured - ‘Foundation’s Edge’ - ‘Foundation’s Edge by Isaac Asimov: The end is the beginning is the end’ -
Day five featured - ‘Foundation and Earth’ - ‘Home again, home again, in so many ways: Isaac Asimov’s Foundation and Earth’ - 
Day seven featured - ‘Forward the Foundation’ - ‘In which a great work is finally completed: Isaac Asimov’s Forward the Foundation’ -

Friday, May 13, 2011

Macmillan Lets A 'Brother' Down

This will be a short post. All I can say is - REALLY? Ah, and then I noticed it is being sold by Macmillan. Should have known. $9.99 for a book that is in the public domain. Wow! I wonder, do I get a kiss with this purchase too?

Friday, May 6, 2011

'The Shrike' Slashes On To E-book Format

I just discovered one of my favorite books, Dan Simmon's 'Hyperion', has finally made it to Amazon's Kindle and Apple's e-book stores! It has been awhile since I first read 'Hyperion' but it is indeed a CLASSIC as are the follow-up books to the story - 'The Fall of Hyperion', 'Endymion', and 'The Rise of Endymion'.

I am not sure how long these e-books have been out but if you are a sci-fi fan this is a must read. I have read, in some reviews of the e-book, that the conversion of the book to e-book format has many misspellings and has some formatting issues. Hopefully a cleaned up version will be release to address these issues.

I am VERY excited about this release and have already downloaded and purchased all of the 'Hyperion' e-books and will re-read them as soon as I finish Simmon's 'The Terror'.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Penguin Vs. 'The Bugs'

The other day I was surfing around the web site eReaderiQ.com and under the recently Kindized section I found Robert Heinlein's "Starship Troopers" being offered at $9.99 US dollars. My first thought was REALLY 10 bucks for an almost 52 year old book! Pricing like this really has me questioning publishers pricing policies on older e-books. Then I looked to see who the publisher is for this latest outrageous offering and I should have known - Penguin Publishing strikes again!

It almost seems that Penguin Publishing purposely prices their e-books high to force a reader to go elsewhere. I can't remember the last time I even bothered purchasing any e-book from Penguin Publishing. In fact now I won't even purchase ANY book from Penguin Publishing.

Publishers need to realize there are hundreds of thousand if not millions of books to pick from to read and if a book isn't priced right or is priced outrageously, I, as a consumer, can easily just move on to something else, which is what I do whenever I now see something published by Penguin.

Now for anyone who hasn't read Heinlein's 'Starship Troopers' try and find an old paperback edition or run to your library and give it a read. It is indeed a classic and highly recommended! It is a lot better then movie!! I would have loved to have given it another read on my iPad or Kindle but at the current e-book pricing I will sadly pass. The Penguin strikes again!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

New Ad Support Kindle

Yesterday Amazon announced their new ad supported Kindle for $114 dollars. As much as I like the idea of a cheaper Kindle I was a bit surprised that Amazon only reduced the overall price for the ad supported Kindle $25 dollars. Of course I would have preferred a free Kindle if I am going to be bombarded with ads. Like many others I feel the best price point would have been $99 dollars. Although I am pretty much a full time iPad e-book reader these days I have to admit this ad supported Kindle does seem some what attractive to me. I guess the one thing I will want to find out is how intrusive the ads will be to the reader. If the ads are just on the screen saver screen and go away the instant I want to get down to reading then I won't have a problem with this idea at all. If however ads pop up while I am reading, which I don't think will be the case, then I would have a REAL big problem! I have to give a huge thumbs up to Amazon for trying different things to bring new users to the Kindle reader. I might be retiring my 1st generation Kindle very soon.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

I'm Back!

Wow! I can't believe I haven't touched this blog since Nov. 2010. Insane! I guess between the holidays, family, work, and my little side app making business I let my poor e-books blog fade. That doesn't mean I haven't been reading and staying on top of the e-book world. I have read several e-books over the last couple of months and I will try and share the best of the best that I have read as the weeks move forward.

Today I wanted to restart this blog again and share an awesome link I found to help keep track of new Kindle e-books and price reductions for the Kindle. I have used this link the last couple of days and have found it extremely handy. The name of the website is ereaderiq. Check it out! I think you will find it very useful. I have already purchased several e-books I didn't even know were finally available on the Kindle.