Indie promotion – The Sword of Solonus

Dear reader,

Monday. One of the last ones of this year. As we are cutting close to the year’s end today’s Indie Promotion may help you to cut some more corners:

The Sword of Solonus

sword of solonus
by Adam Matthews

Ebook Short Description: Human life is a struggle in the medieval kingdom of Orenelle, and the high elves promise King Ceron and his people an escape from this struggle. Only by embracing the Light of the Elwan, (the forest spirit and life force of the elves) will the population achieve everlasting life- whilst leaving behind famine, disease, and death. When the day of salvation arrives, mankind will undergo a metamorphosis and will join the high elves to live in the sacred woodland paradise of Sera Norem, but at what cost?

Where to find.
You can find the e-book on Amazon.com.

Don’t wait to download your e-book

Dear reader,

Do you buy e-books? And do you pay for them by credit card? If yes and yes, it is wise to download your e-books as soon as you can, and keep them safe somewhere! Read on why, as I found this on “Opposing Views“:

DRM rears its uglymalformedmalignantcross-eyed head again. Despite the fact that, as Cory Doctorow so aptly put it, no one has ever purchased anything because it came with DRM, an ever-slimming number of content providers insist on punishing paying customers with idiotic “anti-piracy” schemes.

Combine this “malware” with digital distribution that sticks the end user with an unfavorable license rather than, say, an actual book, and you’ve got another ready-made disaster. The Consumerist has the details on yet another paying customer dealing with DRM stupidity. It starts off with this physical analogy.

[I]f reader Synimatik had bought a paperback book a few months ago and picked it up to read now, the book’s pages wouldn’t magically glue shut just because the credit card she normally uses at the bookstore has expired.

Obviously, no one would expect a physical book to be subject to the whims of the publisher or the store it was purchased from. A sale is a sale, even if many rights holders would rather it wasn’t. But, Barnes & Noble doesn’t see it that way. Sure, you can buy an ebook from them, but you’d better keep everything in your profile up to date if you plan on accessing your purchases at some undetermined point in the future.

Yesterday, I tried to download an ebook I paid for, and previously put on my Nook, a few months ago. When I tried, I got an error message stating I could not download the book because the credit card on file had expired. But, I already paid for it. Who cares if the credit card is expired? It has long since been paid for, so the status of the card on file has nothing to do with my ability to download said book. I didn’t see anything in the terms of service about this either, but it’s possible I missed it.

This is just one more reason to either not buy ebooks, or strip the drm off of the ones you purchase so you can you the book you BUY on all your devices without having to purchase multiple copies for no reason and have access to something you already bought when you want it.

Read more on  “Opposing Views“.

APG Indie promotion – Doodling

Dear reader,

As it’s Monday again, I present to you a new Indie Promotion:

Doodling


by Alexandria Publishing Group author Jonathan Gould

Ebook Short Description: Neville Lansdowne fell off the world.

Actually, he did not so much fall off as let go. The world had been moving so quickly lately and Neville was finding it almost impossible to keep up.

Douglas Adams meets Lewis Carroll (with just a touch of Gulliver’s Travels) as Neville wanders through an asteroid field, meeting a variety of eccentric characters and experiencing some most unexpected adventures.

 

Where to find: this e-book is available from Amazon.com.

 

Ashes and Blood

Dear reader,

Don’t fear, we are not after your blood. We just want to present the latest publication with the Alexandria Publishing Group, which is

Ashes and Blood, the new release in the series Aegis of the Gods by Terry C. Simpson:

If you are ready for “A battle of trust, treachery, hate, love, and faith.” then do not hesitate to follow this link to Amazon.com for your own copy of this book!

We congratulate Terry on this new release which he made possible despite being a victim of “Sandy”. Well done, Terry, and thank you!

Indie promotion – Tea with the demon

Dear reader,

Welcom to Monday and today’s Indie Promotion:

Tea with the demon


by Isobel Herring

Ebook Short Description: Dez isn’t fully human, neither is Angel. He’s not often fully clothed either. He’s not looking for love. He’s creating something much more base in nature, and much more fun. Or, rather, it should be more fun.

Cursed to walk the streets of the sleepy town of Wingate, where nothing ever happens, for the rest of his life, or eternity (whichever is the sooner) Dez is bored. It used to be a challenge, but humanity has become far too easy to manipulate. Until he meets Helen Sharpe.

WARNING – This book contains material of an explicit adult nature. NOT FOR THOSE UNDER THE APPROPRIATE AGE OF CONSENT (USUALLY 18 YEARS)

Where to find.
You can find the e-book on Amazon.com.

The best places for DRM-free e-books – part 2 of 2

By Joanna Cabot

From Part 1: I love DRM-free books! I know that for most people, DRM is an issue they might not think about often; if their books work, they’re happy. But for many more experienced e-book users, it’s an issue to care about. Unless, that is, you buy and read books that are DRM-free.

Smashwords logoThe books referenced and linked to below can be kept forever, converted using free software such as Calibre, and read on any device you might own. But where to get them? Here are some of my favorite sources:

3. SMASHWORDS

This is the Amazon of self-published books. Some genres are better represented than others, and quality can vary, but it’s a polished-looking ecosystem. You can view online (or download for later) generous samples, and read reviews and comments by other users.

For authors, it’s a one-stop shop; if you format your work correctly, Smashwords can get it into the Kobo, Kindle, Sony and Nook stores for you. There is also a growing sub-group of authors publishing via this platform whose books started their life with mainstream publishers and are being re-released by their authors, who have gotten back the rights.

Many free books are available, as well as for-purchase titles. Once you buy, you can re-download, in any format you choose, any time you need a fresh copy.

Five to get you started:

♦ Soul Identity by Dennis Batchelder (free): A computer hacker is asked to investigate a mysterious group that promises to transfer your wealth to your next life by tracking your soul into its next incarnation. A great suspense read.

♦ Alien Murders by Stephen Goldin ($2.99): Three sci-fi stories featuring a ‘literary broker’ who travels to alien worlds via virtual reality, and represents Earth’s cultural property to alien buyers.

Still Life with Murder by Patricia Ryan, writing as P.B. Ryan♦ Deadly Gamble by Connie Shelton ($0.99): The first in a series of mystery novels featuring Charlie Parker, an accountant-turned-detective.

♦ Radium Halos by Shelley Stout ($2.99): An excellent historical novel based on the true events of the Radium Girls, female factory workers who contracted radiation poisoning in the 1920s from painting luminous watch and clock dials with radium paint.

♦ Still Life with Murder by Patricia Ryan (free): The first in Patricia Ryan’s historical mystery series featuring Nell Sweeney. Originally published by Berkeley Books.

4. FICTIONWISE

Fictionwise was once the e-book destination. Their sale to Barnes & Noble, followed soon after by the agency pricing fiasco, left them a shell of their former self. But they did—and still do—offer a good selection of DRM-free e-books. (Look for the word ‘multiformat’ when you’re browsing, to tip you off.) You can also select a genre and then use a drop down to filter your choices to only this type of book.

One drawback: Sampling is primitive, and often not available, and you’ll need to look elsewhere for reviews. But if you know what you’re looking for, you can get some good deals here. I won’t list prices for the following titles; if you’re a club member and wait for a coupon code, you can do much better than the list price.

Five good ones:

♦ Masters of Noir: Volume One by Ed McBain: The first in a series, edited by crime great Ed McBain and others, collecting classics from the crime noir genre into one omnibus volume.

♦ 3rd World Products: Book 1 by Ed Howdershelt: A fun and clever little sci-fi tale about alien first contact with Earth. They see our planet as a business opportunity! Try book one, and if you like it, go to Howdershelt’s website to get the rest of them in a much cheaper bundle.

♦ Fellowship of Fear by Aaron Elkins: The first in a well-regarded series featuring an archaeologist detective.

3rd World Products Book 1 by Ed Howdershelt♦ Rx for Murder by Renee Horowitz: Another creative take on the detective genre, this cozy read features a pharmacist sleuth.

♦ Dell Fiction MagazinesAsimov’sEllery Queen and other Dell magazines, both current issues and a few months’ worth of past issues. These don’t expire, either. They’re treated like an e-book, and once you have one, it stays in your shelf.

5. AUTHOR WEBSITES

If you find an author you like and his or her work is DRM-free, chances are they own the rights to the work, and control their own collections. This means it’s highly likely the author has a website, where you can frequently get series books in a bundle at a significant discount.

Some to try:

♦ Cory Doctorow: Doctorow gives away the downloads to all his books for free. Most of them have short ads at the beginning; you can find links on his website to vendors for purchasing a clean copy, or you can purchase a print copy to donate to a school or library.

♦ Simon Haynes: This author writes the popular comedic space opera ‘Hal Spacejock.’ He is self-pubbing his new Hal Jr. series, and you can buy the first four volumes of the classic series in a bundle for $9.99.

♦ Diane Duane: This author of the children’s series So You Want to be a Wizard sells both the original published version and a new updated version which is only available at her site.

♦ J.A. Konrath: He writes detective novels, suspense novels and blogs that are revered by aspiring authors. You can get autographed or inscribed print books, as well as e-books—including a bundle of every book he sells, for $43.99.

♦ Blake Crouch: A suspense writer and sometime-collaborator with Konrath. Alas, no bundles, but all the books are there with links to vendors for purchasing, and bonus features such as reviews and excerpts.

So, is that enough to get you all started? Happy reading!

APG Indie promotion – Etchings of Power

Dear reader,

It is Monday again, so I present to you: today’s Indie Promotion:

Etchings of Power


by Alexandria Publishing Group author Terry Simpson

Ebook Short Description: The opening stanza in a new epic fantasy series that delves into the themes of war, corruptible power, love, betrayal, and absolution in the world of Denestia.
Ryne Waldron, a living legend at the edge of madness is haunted by a murderous past and the voices of his power that whisper in his head. Hunted, he strives to defend a village he swore to protect. But his enemies might be closer than he could ever suspect.
Ancel Dorn, a gifted student, struggles with rejection and must accept who he is or perish to the creatures that stalk him and his parents. When he discovers he’s targeted for death by beings that seemed to have stepped from the history of an ancient war, his only choice is to flee.
Irmina Nagel, Ancel’s former lover, and an assassin sent to find Ryne, is mired in her quest for revenge on Ancel’s parents, and must set aside her emotions or fail her final test. What she discovers may not only change her life but the world as a whole.

 

Where to find: this e-book is available from Amazon.com.

 

The best places for DRM-free e-books – part 1 of 2

As found on Teleread:

By Joanna Cabot

Project GutenbergI love DRM-free books! I know that for most people, DRM is an issue they might not think about often; if their books work, they’re happy. But for many more experienced e-book users, it’s an issue to care about.

If you acquire 100 Amazon e-books and then you buy a Kobo, how are you going to read those books? If you spend years as a loyal Sony customer and then buy a Kindle, what will you do with the books you’ve bought and loved? Unless you are blessed with some technical skills—and either a country whose laws permit format-shifting, or a moral compass that doesn’t care as much about the letter of the law—you’re stuck.

Unless, that is, you buy and read books that are DRM-free. These books can be kept forever, converted using free software such as Calibre, and read on any device you might own. But where to get them? Here are some of my favorite sources:

1. PROJECT GUTENBERG

This is the oldest e-book repository on the Web. It has over 40,000 free books, with more available through affiliates like Project Gutenberg Canada and Project Gutenberg Australia. These books are all public domain titles, but you would be shocked at what’s in the public domain these days. It’s not just Shakespeare and the Bible anymore—there arepulp sci-fi and mystery titles from the Golden Age, early issues of Scientific American andAstounding Stories, cookbooks, children’s classics (including books for very young readers, such as the complete works of Beatrix Potter) and more. Many are illustrated. Some have audio book versions. Most of the newer ones were prepared through Gutenberg’s Distributed Proofreaders program to ensure they are error-free. New books are added very frequently

Browsing can be a bit of a chore—some of the books are sorted into topical bookshelves, others are not. But if you know what you’re looking for, or stick to the ‘new release’ or ‘most-downloaded’ RSS feeds, you’re sure to find something good. And the scope of this project—their goal is to have every public domain book ever published—is incredible. This is truly an unparalleled resource, and one of the great gifts the Internet has given us.

Here are five books to get you started; I suggest downloading the HTML, as it seems to convert the cleanest.

Harvard Classics♦ The Harvard Classics: The vast majority of the works in Dr. Eliot’s famous ‘five-foot shelf,’ a collection designed to give a reader a complete classical education with only the books which might fit in a single shelf.

♦ The Best Short Stories: A collection of themed short story collections such as ‘The Best American Humorous Short Stories’ and ‘The Best Russian Shirt Stories,’ sorted by country or origin.

♦ The Golden Treasury, edited by Francis Turner Palgrave: One of the best poetry anthologies ever published. The poetry bookshelf has some other good ones listed.

♦ Legends of the Jews by Louis Ginzberg: This series draws together Jewish myth and folklore from a variety of sources, similar to how the Brothers Grimm synthesized fairy tales from multiple sources.

♦ Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte: My all-time favorite novel. A gothic story of the forbidden love between the beautiful Catherine and the mysterious Heathcliff.

2. DELPHI CLASSICS 

Interested in reading the great classics but don’t want to take the time to download two dozen Dickens books, or seek out individual volumes of Sherlock Holmes stories? Do you want to read Andrew Lang’s popular Fairy Books as they first appeared with complete illustrations? Do you want to learn more about the great artists or poets, but don’t know where to start? Delphi Classics is for you!

This store is known for their lavishly illustrated complete works collections (complete works of Dickens, complete works of Austen, and so on) but lately has branched out into two new series: Masters of Art and Masters of Poetry, which, as their titles imply, present the complete works of artists and poets. These books are very well-done, withDelphi Classics D.H. Lawrence numerous illustrations, biographical information and other goodies it would take a long time to track down on your own. They’re also updated frequently—with corrections as well, with new works, as they become available.

If you buy from Delphi’s website as opposed to the Amazon store, you can download the free updates at any time from your account. Two drawbacks:

a. Some of the files are very large, which may slow down a less robust reader.

b. Also, you have to pay separately for the .mobi and .epub versions. I tried converting a mobi version using Calibre and after 30 minutes of trying, Calibre crashed. I don’t relish paying again for an epub if I move to a Kobo Reader down the road, and I think Delphi Classics should amalgamate their editions and let their customers download a purchased title in whatever format they choose.

My five favorites:

♦ Delphi Poets: Emily Dickinson ($1.99) – Dickinson’s complete works, with bonus biographical material including Dickinson’s letters, as well as photographs and illustrations.

♦ Dickens eVolume Collection ($3.99) – The complete works of Dickens, plus biographical materials and extras, in a zipped file of 20 volumes.

♦ The Brontes – Complete Works ($2.99): The complete vollected works of all the Brontes, including their childhood writing and work by their lesser-known artist brother. Illustrated with photographs and reproductions and all the usual bonus features.

♦ Andrew Lang- Complete Works ($2.99): The complete fairy tales books, in order, plus his other short story collections, poetry, other writing and so on. As usual, illustrated with all the usual bonus features.

♦ Masters of Art – Leonardo da Vinci ($2.99): Da Vinci’s paintings in full colour, zoom-able, with bonus details. I reviewed this unique series for TeleRead earlier this year.