Friday, 31 October 2014

The Digital Reader

The Digital Reader

Breaking News: Amazon Attributes Poor Fire Phone Sales to High Price

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 10:35 AM PDT

amazon-fire-phone-666The hot tech news story this morning comes from Fortune, which reported that Amazon has figured out why they’ve sold so few Fire Phones.

Fortune interviewed  Amazon Senior Vice President of Devices David Limp, who shared the shocking that Amazon may have made a mistake with the price of the Fire Phone:

“We didn't get the price right,” Limp admitted. “I think people come to expect a great value, and we sort of mismatched expectations. We thought we had it right. But we're also willing to say, 'we missed.' And so we corrected.”

After debuting with a retail of $49 and an AT&T subsidized price of $199, the Fire Phone’s subsidized price was dropped to under a dollar. That hasn’t done much to boost sales, or so a market survey of Amazon Prime members suggests.

Amazon has admitted to sitting on $83 million in Fire Phone stock at the end of the 3rd quarter as well as taking a $170 million loss on the phone in that quarter, but that hasn’t quelled their interest in smartphones.

“We are going to keep iterating software features to get it better and better,” said Limp. “Each release that we're doing, we're learning. Beyond that, I leave it out there to see what people think.”

Amazon has a history of putting out cheap but adequate hardware in order to get customers to use their other services (digital music, book, movie, and app stores), so much so that I was surprised first by the specs and cameras and then by the high price and AT&T exclusive. Neither decision follows from Amazon’s past product decisions, so perhaps if Amazon corrects those two missteps they could sell more phones.

The post Breaking News: Amazon Attributes Poor Fire Phone Sales to High Price appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Video: Four Fantastic Features We Don’t Have In The English Language

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 10:46 AM PDT

4ffwdhitelThe English language has a history of borrowing words, letters, and even tenses from other languages, or as James Nicoll put it “pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and riffle their pockets for new vocabulary”.

This has given the English language a set of pronunciation rules that would best be described as crazy, frustrating even native English speakers, but while some of us would like to reduce the complexity, others are looking at other languages and thinking about English might steal next.

Slate recently found a video by Tom Scott where he details 4 parts of other languages which English lacks and could benefit from. The video was actually posted last year, but since I have never posted it I find it fair game.

As much fun as I found the video, only one of the 4 parts (time-independent verbs, clusivity, absolute direction, evidentiality) which English lacks really strike me as a shortcoming.

English has terms for absolute (cardinal) direction in addition to relative direction (left/right) so it’s not like it’s missing anything. Clusivity (inclusive vs exclusive pronouns) is handled by possessive adjectives serving double duty. And as for time-independent verbs, that just trikes me as a way of sowing more confusion by providing less detail in a sentence.

But evidentiality, now that could be useful. As explained in the video, there are languages which are structured so that when you make a statement that an event occurred, you also implicitly say how you know that the event happened – what was your source, in other words.

Speaking as a blogger who regularly has to judge the reliability of a report based on that report’s source (first-hand, second-hand, video, etc), evidentiality is a constant hazard. And while I can explicitly ask for this kind of detail, I would so love if it were instead baked into the language in the first place. It would make writing about events so much easier by guaranteeing that a summary would also include a mention of the source of information.

Do you know what I would also appreciate? Tenses  (this was mentioned in a sidenote in the video). English has an excess of past, present and future tenses, many of which I only vaguely understand, but other languages have tenses which don’t map on to English at all. I would like to see more of those foreign tenses purposes be added to the English language.

On the other hand, I also regret never having been taught to fully understand the tenses we have now, but that is another story.

P.S. If you like this video, you might also like the following:


The post Video: Four Fantastic Features We Don’t Have In The English Language appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Podcast: Will Amazon Lead Us to the Golden Age of Books?

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 07:37 AM PDT

FT-141030-Amazon.jpg.CROP.promovar-mediumlarge[1] Amazon has been the subject of much debate in the book industry for at least the past decade, and it will continue to be debated long after the stake is lit. The retailer has been the subject of numerous panels at conferences, and on Wednesday night it received special attention.

Slate and New America held a special panel in New York City two nights ago to answer the question: “Will Amazon Lead Us to the Golden Age of Books?”

Luckily for those of us who were unable to attend, the event was recorded and it’s now available online. The podcast can be found on Soundcloud, and you can listen to it below. It’s 48 minutes long. (You can find more details on the panelists over here.)

I’ve listened to it twice, and I’ve found that it is not as easy to summarize or break down into sound bites as that debate held in July. (That event could be summed up as “Die Amazon, Die”.) Slate posted a recap, but I don’t think they captured the nuances of the discussion.

I’m not sure I can either, but I did gain a couple insight. One of my takeaways from this debate, and it’s something I learned not so much from what someone said but the viewpoint he revealed, is that some still see Amazon as – but not Amazon plus all the subsidiaries like Goodreads. (I make this mistake as well.)

That point came to me about two thirds of the way through when one of the panelists remarked that Amazon is really great at selling books but that book stores were still better at discovery, and at book culture. That got me thinking about how online bookselling proving the economic theory about a new sub-optimal competitor disrupting the old by focusing on one area and doing it better. That led me to the understanding that Amazon had bought Goodreads because it knew that alone was great at one thing, selling, and that to really compete with bookstores Amazon needed to also match the discovery and culture aspects as well.

That point is rather off topic for Wednesday night’s debate, I know, and now that I’ve written down I see that it is also obvious. But it was something I learned.

What did you think of the discussion?

The post Podcast: Will Amazon Lead Us to the Golden Age of Books? appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Today's Kindle Books

Today's Kindle Books

More Bargain and Free Books For 10-31-14

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 06:10 AM PDT

Here are 3 bargain books and 2 free books to curl up on the couch with on this Halloween night.

You can read Kindle books wherever you are and on any device with the Free Kindle App – you don’t even have to own a Kindle to use the app!


The Scarecrow
by Scott Nicholson
Rating: 4.0 Stars
Genre: Paranormal
Price: $0.99 Save $2.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“Always surprises and always entertains.” -Jonathan Maberry, author

Amazon Bestselling Author

When Katy Logan moves her troubled teen daughter Jett to the Appalachian community of Solom, she envisions a peaceful rural lifestyle on her new husband’s farm.

But there’s more to Solom than she ever imagined. Gordon Smith’s first wife Rebecca died under mysterious circumstances, and Katy believes her spirit is still in the house.

Gordon’s great-grandfather was a horseback preacher who vanished while on a mission one wintry night, and local lore holds that he returns from time to time seeking vengeance.

And Gordon teases Katy and Jett with a story about a wicked scarecrow that comes in from the fields at night to slake an unnatural thirst.

When the legends come to life, Katy and Jett discover the Smith family secrets cut deep. And they must face the supernatural menace together or become part of Solom’s legends forever.


Cry Wolf Series- Paranormal Romance Box Set- Steamy Shifter Romance
by Sarah Makela
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Genre: Romance
Price: $0.99 Save $4.00
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Cry Wolf Series- Shifter Romance Box Set – Nook
Cry Wolf Series- Shifter Romance Box Set – Apple iBooks
Cry Wolf Series- Shifter Romance Box Set – Google Play
Cry Wolf Series- Shifter Romance Box Set – Kobo

NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

The Witch Who Cried Wolf – Book 1- Be careful what you wish for…

A potion gone wrong…

Mia Brooks is a reluctant witch, with powers that she tries to hold in check. But when her magic gets mixed up, supernatural forces are unleashed and suddenly she's being pursued by werewolves—that she didn't even realize existed…

Hidden emotions…

Ethan Parker, Mia's brother's best friend, is home from deployment for the holidays. Mia's not only hiding from werewolves, she's trying to keep her feelings for Ethan secret, it would be a disaster if he knew she's been nursing a long-time crush…

The power of love…

Things take a terrifying turn when Mia and Ethan are attacked by a werewolf. Ethan is amazed when Mia reveals her paranormal prowess as she tries to shield them from danger.

But can she really protect them from the darkness that lurks? And how can he tell her that, for ages, he's been denying what he really wants? Mia…

Cold Moon Rising – Book 2- Passions flare when the cold moon rises…

Kelly- a normal college girl, who knows what she wants—to survive her final exams, and find someone to share her life with. Studying with Jacob is becoming too hot to handle, she's falling for him, but he's going too fast…

Jacob- a not-so-typical frat guy, who hides a secret—he's a werewolf. Whenever the moon is high, he's driven to shed his human form and satisfy his powerful desires. He craves Kelly, but she's pushing him away…

Fallout- Jacob can smell Kelly's arousal, but she insists she doesn't want sex. A wolf can only take so much before his natural instincts win out. When the tension between them explodes, Jacob has no choice but to walk…

Kidnapped! Kelly is abducted by evil scientists who've mistaken her for a female werecat and, despite their differences, Jacob has to try and find her.

But it's a race against time and the lunar tides. The scientists have taken Kelly to their lab and turned her into a shapeshifter for real.

The full moon is rising, and soon neither Kelly nor Jacob will be able to control their inner beasts. Who knows what the consequences will be when they are consumed by unquenchable animal lust…

The Wolf Who Played With Fire – Book 3- Some magic can't be unspun…

Meddling in magic…

If Mia Brooks could turn back time, it would be to when she used her fledgling magic to craft a potion for an injured werewolf.

It nearly killed the Pack Alpha, and now the lives of her witch mentor, Jessa, and her soldier boyfriend, Ethan Parker, have been changed forever.

Jessa is in hospital after a vicious werewolf attack. And, Ethan, having being bitten, is becoming a werewolf himself.

A wolf at the door…

Mia can't turn back time, but she can try to make things right with the two people she cares about most. She's keeping Jessa's shop, Eternally Magick, open, and she's there for Ethan as his inner wolf grows.

But, by the next full moon, his transformation will be complete. Can she really be the mate of a half-man-half-wolf, living within the law of the Pack?

Under his spell…

Struggling to contain his new lupine senses, Ethan goes missing on active duty. When Mia realizes her werewolf lover has been abducted, she knows must harness every magic power she possesses to get him safely back…


SEO 2014
by Adam Clarke
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Genre: Non-Fiction
Price: $0.99 Save $4.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“Updated, relevant, and lots of practical advice and examples.” -J. Richardson

No matter your background, SEO 2014 will walk you through search engine optimization techniques successfully used to grow countless companies online, show you the exact steps to rank high in Google, and explain how get a ton of customers to your site with SEO.

First, let me tell you a little secret about SEO marketing…

Most of the search engine optimization advice on the Internet is wrong!

If you’ve sifted through the torrents of search engine optimization advice online, you may have noticed two things:
– Most advice on SEO is either completely outdated or just dead-wrong.
– Google’s constant updates have rendered many popular SEO strategies useless.

Why is this so? Google are constantly evolving, making it difficult to know what currently works. Recent changes:
1. October, 2014 – Google released new update Penguin 3.0, targeting websites with low quality links.
2. September, 2014 – Google released new major update Panda 4.1, punishing sites with “thin” content.
3. August, 2014 – Google announced sites secured with SSL certificates will get an advantage in search engines.

SEO 2014 walks you through the above updates and more. This book also reveals industry secrets about always staying ahead of Google’s algorithm, how to learn SEO from a fundamental level, achieve top rankings, and generate a constant wave of new customers to your site.

Discover the latest powerful link building techniques experts use to get top rankings

Link building is simply the strongest factor for ranking high in Google.

Unfortunately, most widely-used methods suck!

This chapter walkers you through the most powerful techniques that work wonders, and won’t get you in hot-water with Google…..and much much more!!!



Please make sure the price says "Kindle Price $0.00″ before clicking “Buy”. If it says "Prime Members $0.00″ “read for free”, it is NO LONGER FREE. All books are free at the time they are posted but are subject to change back to full price at any time. If you are outside of the United States, these books may not be free.

Family Pack
by Michael Jasper
Rating: 4.0 Stars
Genre: Horror
Price: $0.00 Save $16.95
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

Some family curses really should be passed on…

Tommy Roling does everything humanly possible to raise his infant daughter Corinne the right way.

But a half year out of high school, Tommy finds himself a single parent as well as flat broke.

And, with every full moon, he can’t fight the urge to strip off his clothes and run wild through the pastures outside town.

So when a stranger shows up, slashed to death, the day after Tommy’s most recent full-moon run, Tommy must resolve this murder or he could lose what little he has left.

That includes his innocent baby girl Corinne, who just might have inherited his werewolf gene from him.


The Shadow Soul
by Kaitlyn Davis
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Genre: Fantasy
Price: $0.00 Save $12.99
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

The Shadow Soul – Nook
The Shadow Soul – Apple iBooks
The Shadow Soul – Kobo

When Jinji’s home is destroyed, she is left with nowhere to run and no one to run to–until she meets Rhen, a prince chasing rumors that foreign enemies have landed on his shores.

Masquerading as a boy, Jinji joins Rhen with vengeance in her heart.

But traveling together doesn’t mean trusting one another, and both are keeping a deep secret–magic. Jinji can weave the elements to create master illusions and Rhen can pull burning flames into his flesh.

But while they struggle to hide the truth, a shadow lurks in the night. An ancient evil has reawakened, and unbeknownst to them, these two unlikely companions hold the key to its defeat.

Because their meeting was not coincidence–it was fate. And their story has played out before, in a long forgotten time, an age of myth that is about to be reborn…


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More ENT Deals for 10-31-14

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 05:50 AM PDT

Add more books to your Ereader library with this set of 4 bargain books and 3 free books.

You can read Kindle books wherever you are and on any device with the Free Kindle App – you don’t even have to own a Kindle to use the app!


All Hallows at Eyre Hall
by Luccia Gray
Rating: 4.8 Stars
Genre: Historical Romance
Price: $0.99 Save $2.43
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“Written as a rotating narrative, the reader will find the richness of each character's soul, perception, and thoughts conveyed in the first person.” -Susan M.

Rediscover the world of Jane Eyre…

Twenty-two years after her marriage to Edward Rochester, Jane is coping with the imminent death of her bedridden husband – and the revelation of his unspeakable secrets.

Richard Mason has returned, instigating a sequence of events which will expose Rochester's disloyalty to Jane, his murderous plots, and innumerable other sins.

Drawn into a complex conspiracy, everything Jane holds dear is threatened. Who was the man she thought she loved? What is she prepared to do to safeguard her family and preserve her own stability?


Friends and Foes
by Mildred Colvin and Jonathan Colvin
Rating: 4.9 Stars
Genre: Christian Fiction
Price: $0.99
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

Friends and Foes – Nook
Friends and Foes – Apple iBooks
Friends and Foes – Kobo

“There’s plenty of twists, turns and surprises to keep the reader turning the pages and a bit of humor too!” -Gail P.

Award-Winning Author

In this 19th Century action, adventure romance, an innocent wrong turn sticks Louella Tolivar in the middle of a train robbery that threatens her life and the lives of those around her.

She is forced to make a drastic decision to protect those she loves including James Carlin, Pinkerton agent.

James, better known as Jimmy in Mammoth Spring, Arkansas, returns to his childhood playground on assignment to find Robin Hood, the ringleader of an outlaw network robbing trains from Kansas City, Missouri to Memphis, Tennessee.

He reunites with Ellie and Robert, two best friends from his childhood, and becomes entangled with them in a life-threatening adventure no one expects or wants.

As James fights to keep Louella safe from the outlaws who want her dead, she grows into the woman he would like to spend his life with.

If only danger and death didn't threaten with every assignment, they might have a chance, but can a lawman truly give up his badge? Ellie knows he can't, but is she willing to give him up so he can continue the life he needs and craves?


Retirement You Can’t Outlive Updated and Expanded
by Dennis Postema
Rating: 4.8 Stars
Genre: Non-Fiction
Price: $0.99 Save $2.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“This is also a good read for everyone because financially wise, you will learn a lot from it!” -John D.

Would you walk into the fight of your life without a weapon?

If you're planning for your retirement but don't know how to create a secure retirement savings that can provide income for life, you're doing exactly that.

Retirement You Can't Outlive cuts through the hype, challenges the conventional wisdom of the stock jockeys and focuses on conservative, reasonable, and sane ways that savers can approach the process of saving for retirement.

Using plain language and a lot of common sense that's been missing from financial planning sessions for decades, Retirement You Can't Outlive helps you restore the dreams you once had of your retirement years being truly golden.


by Thomas A. Knight
Rating: 4.7 Stars
Genre: Fantasy
Price: $0.99 Save $2.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“The characters are captivating and are weaved together with great care.” -mnawij

Amazon Bestselling and Award-Winning Author

Once upon a time…

…a warrior of light defeated an insane wizard, but behind every heroic story lies a truth never told.

A man washes ashore on the island of Arda after a terrible storm, remembering nothing but his name: Krycin. The blue wizard Gladius finds him, takes him in, and is determined to help Krycin regain what he’s lost.

The Fates have other plans. Krycin’s presence on Galadir is disrupting the fabric of the universe. The solution? Eliminate him, by any means necessary.

When Gladius sides with the council, his efforts to destroy Krycin spark a war that threatens all life on Galadir.

In order to save himself and what remains of his people, Krycin must defeat Gladius, but time is running out. Every step Krycin takes to destroy Gladius makes things worse, and now a massive army is marching on Findoor.

Krycin must come up with a way to defeat Gladius before it’s too late, and forge his legacy for the future of Galadir.



Please make sure the price says "Kindle Price $0.00″ before clicking “Buy”. If it says "Prime Members $0.00″ “read for free”, it is NO LONGER FREE. All books are free at the time they are posted but are subject to change back to full price at any time. If you are outside of the United States, these books may not be free.

Dream Killing
by Magus Tor and Carrie Lynn Weniger
Rating: 4.8 Stars
Genre: Mystery
Price: $0.00 Save $3.99
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

Ex-CIA agent Drew Corrigan never imagined that after leaving a life of fighting crime he would enter a life of killing…in his dreams. Each night Drew faces playing a game of 'kill or be killed', all while sleeping.

Given only a gun and a watch that counts down his lives, he has no choice but to go against his better judgment and kill in order to save himself.

Every night he plays he loses a life, if he is killed another life will be lost, but if he kills he earns a life. Drew must avoid reaching zero lives or he will die in real life.

If he makes it to 100 lives he will win…but what is the prize? As he plays this dangerous game, he realizes that the people he meets in the game are just as real as he is in the waking world.

Can he figure out how to stop this game from taking more lives including his own? Dreaming has never been more dangerous.


The Space In Between
by Jen Minkman
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Genre: Young Adult
Price: $0.00 Save $12.99
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

The Space In Between – Nook
The Space In Between – Apple iBooks
The Space In Between – Google Play
The Space In Between – Kobo

When Moira helps out her sister and brother in a Wiccan ritual on Halloween, the last thing she expects is to be swept away to a mystical wilderness.

Sitting within the stones of the ancient circle of Penmaenmawr, Wales, she’s convinced it’s an illusion. But the dark-haired, handsome man with amnesia that Moira meets during her trance cannot be blinked away like a dream.

Hayko, the mysterious stranger, won't let go. After returning home from her stone circle adventure, she is beckoned back night after night to the outlandish dreamland by an invisible force.

But the hardest part isn’t having to fight the terrifying creatures of these nightmares–it’s realizing she's falling for a guy without a past who isn't real.

What if you really can fall in love with the man of your dreams?


Legal Ease
by Lori Ryan
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Genre: Romance
Price: $0.00 Save $11.59
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

Legal Ease – Nook
Legal Ease – Apple iBooks
Legal Ease – Kobo

NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

Jack Sutton is a man who’s used to getting his way. So when his mother’s will forces his hand, he does the only thing he can.

Jack cuts a deal with the confident, sexy law school student who walks into his office with a proposition he can’t refuse.

The deal may have kept Jack in control at Sutton Capital but his private life quickly spirals out of control.

Just when Jack realizes that he wants more than a year with Kelly, his wealth puts her in great danger and he is left scrambling to save her life and their future together.


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Check out the lineup of Kindles here!

More Ereader Deals for 10-31-14

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 05:33 AM PDT

Give yourself a treat by downloading this selection of 4 bargain books and 2 free books.

You can read Kindle books wherever you are and on any device with the Free Kindle App – you don’t even have to own a Kindle to use the app!


Apparition Lake
by Daniel D. Lamoreux and Doug Lamoreux
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Genre: Thriller and Suspense
Price: $0.99 Save $4.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“Great read! I had trouble putting it down! Was so good….” -Sandra C.

Award-Winning Author

Something is terribly wrong in the nation’s oldest national park.

Horrific deaths have occurred throughout Yellowstone and everyone believes that a monstrous grizzly bear is on a rampage. Scientific evidence suggests another terrifying conclusion.

For Chief Ranger Glenn Merrill, putting an end to the mysterious deaths is more than just his job, it is a mission that will take him to the brink of death and shatter the foundation of his beliefs.

Apparition Lake plunges Glenn, his full-blooded Shoshone friend Johnny Two Ravens, and Jennifer Davies, an aggressive young biologist, into a world of Indian mysticism where mankind and nature struggle for control of Mother Earth.

Apparition Lake races through its supernatural tale of an environment that has “had enough” and the Native American spirit it uses to mete out its revenge.


The Handfasting
by David Burnett
Rating: 4.6 Stars
Genre: Womens Fiction
Price: $0.99 Save $2.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“….a captivating story that will evoke strong emotions as you read it.” -Create With Joy

Katherine had joined hands with Steven in the ruins of the old abbey church. Standing before the high altar, they were handfasted in the Celtic custom, engaged to be married.

Katherine was going to college, going to med school. Steven was studying art in Italy for the next year.

She could not marry Steven, then. A rose bush had bloomed beside the ruined altar. Stephen had reached out to caress one of the flowers.

"I'll find you," he had said. "In ten years, when we have finished school, when we are able to marry, I'll find you. Until then, whenever you see a yellow rose, remember me. Remember I love you."

Ten years after the handfasting, Steven fulfils his promise to find Katie.

Stephen, though, is not Katherine's only suitor. Bill Wilson –arrogant, selfish, sexist, abusive- has known Katherine since they were in high school, and he has long planned to wed her.

When Steven appears, he realizes that he must finally stake his claim. The conflict that follows takes an unexpected, violent twist.

Will Steven fight for their love?

Will Katie see Bill's abuse for what it is, or is she doomed to a tortured life as his wife?


The Cowboy and the Vampire
by Clark Hays and Kathleen McFall
Rating: 4.9 Stars
Genre: Horror
Price: $0.99 Save $3.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“Clark Hays and Kathleen McFall are original and entertaining authors. Brilliant!” -A Bookish Libraria

Say goodbye to LonePine, Wyoming, a typical small town in the American west with typical small town problems — romantic intrigues, warm beer and vampires.

When Lizzie goes missing on their wedding night, Tucker is forced to team up with his bloodthirsty Russian nemesis to find answers.

Crashing through cowboy country, the vampire spirit world and wrecked salmon canneries, they confront an evil more ancient than even the undead — human greed — twisting science into something terrible.

Can there be a happily-ever-after for a cowboy and vampire, or is their unusual love just a delusion? Time to cowboy up!


The Devil Drinks Coffee
by Destiny Ford
Rating: 4.4 Stars
Genre: Mystery
Price: $0.99 Save $2.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

The Devil Drinks Coffee – Nook
The Devil Drinks Coffee – Kobo

“…..superbly written with a great cast of characters, comedy, a mystery with a twist, and a budding love triangle to round it out!” -InD'tale

A cow suicide, a revolving door rescue, and the birth of a bright purple pig are starting to make Kate Saxee wonder if taking a job in her small hometown of Branson Falls, Utah, was such a great idea.

As The Branson Tribune editor, Kate covers local news, which, more often than not, involves her accident-prone mom.

Nothing truly newsworthy has ever happened in the quiet town until local teen Chelsea Bradford turns up dead in a Branson Falls lake.

The police rule Chelsea's death an accident, but Kate suspects there's more to the story—and she's not the only one. Two of Branson's most eligible bachelors are determined to help her solve the crime—among other things.

But the small town social network is faster than Twitter, and gossip about Kate's love-life is quickly branding her the Branson Falls hussy.

As Kate learns more about Chelsea, she discovers that plenty of people are trying to cover up the real story behind the girl's death—including Chelsea's parents.

Now Kate has to juggle work, men, her mom's most recent disaster involving a low-speed John Deere Combine chase on the freeway, and fend off the Mormons heaven-bent on saving her soul—all while solving Chelsea's murder.

Dealing with this is going to require a lot of coffee, chocolate frosted donuts, Neil Diamond’s greatest hits, and a slew of words not on the town approved imitation swear list.



Please make sure the price says "Kindle Price $0.00″ before clicking “Buy”. If it says "Prime Members $0.00″ “read for free”, it is NO LONGER FREE. All books are free at the time they are posted but are subject to change back to full price at any time. If you are outside of the United States, these books may not be free.

Taffeta and Hotspur
by Claudy Conn
Rating: 4.1 Stars
Genre: Historical Romance
Price: $0.00 Save $2.99
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

Taffeta and Hotspur – Nook
Taffeta and Hotspur – Apple iBooks

Lord Thurston Tarrant, known as Hotspur on the London social scene, thinks Lady Taffeta Grantham is too young and idealistic.

Experience has taught him that love is found only in fairy tales and that very few women can be trusted—especially young and attractive ones.

As for Taffy, she finds the rakehell cynical and arrogant—definitely not the hero, the man of principles and romance, her heart longs for.

Besides, as one of the Rogues Three, she is more concerned with social injustice than a man who could use his influence to right wrongs but shows no interest in doing so.

So why does Tarrant find himself enchanted by the beautiful and high-spirited Taffy? Why does Taffy's sporadic gift of sight insist on showing her visions of Tarrant as a bold and passionate lover—her lover?

When the prince of flirts catches the princess of thieves in a 'Robin Hood' encounter gone wrong, a secret is discovered, a promise is given, and two lives will be changed in ways neither could have dreamed.


Dear Coca-Cola
by Terry Ravenscroft
Rating: 3.7 Stars
Genre: Humor
Price: $0.00 Save $3.99
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

Putting pen to paper with hilarious results, in Dear Coca-Cola Terry Ravenscroft homes in on the Food & Drink industry.

Household names such as Heinz, McDonalds, Tesco, Kentucky Fried Chicken and those wonderful people at Coca-Cola are the targets for his entertaining epistles, resulting in a laugh-out-loud letters book with a difference.

Is he really a fan of Butcher’s Dog Food? (For him. not his dog.) And you really don't want to know what he asks Jacob's Biscuits for! But you will when you've read his letters to them.

You will never look at the contents of your refrigerator or kitchen cupboards in the same way again.


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Check out the lineup of Kindles here!

Book Of The Day – DEAD- Special Edition Compendium

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 05:11 AM PDT

Today's Halloween Book of the Day is a Horror box set by TW Brown and it's 63% off for a limited time. DEAD- Special Edition Compendium has a 4.6 star rating and is on sale for only $2.99 – save $5!

“A fun fast ride that keeps you engaged and turning the pages.” Tim – Amazon Reviewer

DEAD- Special Edition Compendium
by TW Brown
Rating: 4.6 Stars
Genre: Horror
Price: $2.99 save $5


This is a compilation of the first three books in the DEAD series-
DEAD- The Ugly Beginning
DEAD- Revelations
DEAD- Fortunes & Failures
Each book also contains close to 10,000 words of additional material requested by YOU…the readers! This special edition allows you to sink into a DEAD world with your favorite people and not be “distracted” by those long absences as other stories intrude and get in the way. This is the first three books of the series with the three story lines separated and enhanced with bonus material requested by you, the reader.

Here’s what the reviewers have to say:

I really liked how the stories all tied in together in one way or another. Had a hard time putting it down, and I was disappointed that it ended.


Well developed characters with enough intrigue to make me ask when the next book is coming out. A must read for any Zombie or Apocalypse reader!


After previewing the free chapters – I was hooked! I found the action in these three books breathtaking to say the least. There are a lot of characters to keep track of but by the time I got halfway through the second book I got used to author’s writing style and flow. I believe that the depth of character building in these three books made it easier to remember who was whom and each individual story.


I love all things vampire, werewolf or zombies and this did not leave me disappointed! Same story from differing but connected viewpoints. Loved it!


If your a die-hard zombie fan like me, the DEAD series is a must read! I plan to read all of them again.

Get DEAD- Special Edition Compendium here: DEAD- Special Edition Compendium

About The Author

Welcome to MY world…
A few minutes with author TW Brown.
Tucked away in the Pacific Northwest with my wife Denise, a Border Collie named Aoife (pronounced EYE-fa), a guitar collection, and an increasing number of aquariums sporting a variety of fish (cichlids are my new favorites), I live for football season when I can cheer on the Oregon Ducks my Super Bowl Champion Seattle Seahawks. I am a fan of Cookie Monster, KISS, and Dr. Who (along with most things British).
His blog can be found at-
You can contact him at-
You can follow him on twitter @maydecpub and on Facebook under Todd Brown, Author TW Brown, and also under May December Publications.

Thank you for considering today’s Book Of The Day – TW Brown and ENT appreciate it.


Bargain and Free Books for 10-31-14

Posted: 31 Oct 2014 05:02 AM PDT

Happy Halloween, friends! Here are 4 bargain books and 2 free books for you to enjoy.

You can read Kindle books wherever you are and on any device with the Free Kindle App – you don’t even have to own a Kindle to use the app!


Seductive Supernaturals
by Various Authors
Rating: 4.9 Stars
Genre: Romance
Price: $0.99 Save $44.01
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“The storylines of all of the books were great with characters that come to life as you are reading the books.” -Jusnana

NY Times, USA Today, and Amazon Bestselling Authors

DIABLO SPRINGS by Erin Quinn- Gracie Beck vowed that she would never to return to Diablo Springs, but the haunted town lures her back—along with the man who betrayed her years ago.

Reilly broke her heart with his lies. Now, he wants a second chance to win her, but can they survive the ghosts of Diablo Springs?

VAMPIRE REBORN by Caridad Pineiro- Would you be reborn for love? Ryder Latimer, sexy Southern vampire, will have to make one of the most difficult choices in his undead life. Become human again or protect his new wife and child.

SHADOW FALL by Erin Kellison- Just discovering her magic, ballerina Annabella Ames didn't mean to summon a dark wolf from Twilight, nor the tempting fallen angel Custo Santovari, who has no place in Heaven.

The cunning wolf stalks them relentlessly, and danger seduces as they fight for redemption and love.

NIGHT ANGEL by Lisa Kessler- When Colin Flynn returns home to Ireland, the immortal Night Walker’s flesh has healed, but the scars hide a broken spirit.

Juliana Duffy plays piano in spite of her deafness, challenging him to redefine himself and find the strength to battle an ancient enemy.

SHADOWS TILL SUNRISE by Chris Marie Green- Two monster hunters fighting a star-crossed attraction and one bloodthirsty phantom leaving a trail of death… Can love survive till the sun rises?

A SHADOW AT TWILIGHT by Mary Leo- They say Hotel Colorado is haunted, but when Dillon Spencer appears in his hotel room to find Hilly Thompson, his assistant, soaking in the tub, he begins to question whether or not he's alive, dead, or caught in another dimension.

MORE THAN FIENDS by Maureen Child- At 32, Cassidy Burke discovers she's a legendary Demon Duster. But she's got bigger problems than some pesky demons.

Like, Logan Miller–first love, baby daddy to her genius daughter is back. Then there's Devlin Cole, walking sin with too many secrets. Cassidy's life is out of control and about to get way too interesting.

IMMORTAL POSSESSION by Cassi Carver- When Dr. Evelyn Vale is paired with Immortal Bounty's sexy commander to go undercover and infiltrate a supernatural body-trafficking ring, she's eager to get to work.

Until she learns the catch… To crack this case, he'll need to possess her body.

FOREVER ROSE by Janet Wellington- Tarot cards predict a dangerous journey for Taylor Rose, but she doesn't expect to travel back to 1888 San Diego.

What the cards didn't predict was falling for a man bent on revenge, a helpful ghost, and spooky séances. Is she there to prevent a murder or to find love?

WELCOME HOME, VAMPIRE by Theresa Meyers- Corporal Cole Wagner lost his humanity in war – literally.

Turned into a vampire by the military's Vector Force, he's the ultimate weapon, but when he returns home to set the past right, will the enemy stop at nothing to get him, including threatening the life of the woman he loved, and lost, before?

VAMPIRE MAGIC (Blood Genie, books 1 and 2) by Sheri Whitefeather- Two tenderly romantic, wildly sensuous stories featuring supernatural hybrids (vampires/genies) who grant wishes for the exchange of blood.

WILD NIGHTS WITH A LONE WOLF by Elisabeth Staab- A mandatory vacation lands Agent Sherri Walker in bed with a local werewolf.

Asher Hughes walked away from his outlaw pack but couldn’t ditch the bad blood. Together they'll have to pull off one hell of an act to get out of treacherous territory alive


First Breath
by Cate Dean
Rating: 5.0 Stars
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Price: $0.99 Save $3.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

First Breath – Nook
First Breath – Apple iBooks
First Breath – Kobo

“Twists and turns plus a bit of history thrown in. A must read for fans of time travel romances.” -Colette W.

Trapped in the ancient past, Kane and Elizabeth must find a killer – before one of them becomes a victim.

Jackson Kane and Elizabeth Barrritt head for home – and land at the edge of Roman Britain, on Hadrian’s Wall. The wrong side of Hadrian’s Wall.

After Kane is accused of murder just minutes into their painful arrival, Elizabeth does everything she can to free him.

When the body count rises, the investigation takes a dark turn, and she becomes desperate to prove him innocent.

She has to find the real killer – or risk losing Kane forever.


by Mark Dawson
Rating: 4.8 Stars
Genre: Thriller and Suspense
Price: $0.99 Save $3.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“A talent to be watched.” -Birmingham Post

John Milton is a ghost.

He was Number One. The most dangerous assassin in Group Fifteen, the black-ops organisation that solves problems when diplomacy has failed.

Now Milton is Her Majesty’s most wanted fugitive – an anonymous loner with a deadly set of skills.

So when he is arrested following a brawl in a Texas bar, the last person he expected to bail him out was a glamorous operative from the Russian Secret Service.

Milton is blackmailed into finding his predecessor as Number One. But she’s a ghost, too, and just as dangerous as him.

He finds himself in deep trouble, playing the Russians against the British in a desperate attempt to save the life of his oldest friend.

Some ghosts are better left alone. But these two have been disturbed and now there’s going to be hell to pay.


The Snow Falcon
by Stuart Harrison
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Price: $0.99 Save $3.00
Make sure price is still $0.99 before clicking "Buy".

“This is a wonderful, well written story.” -Romance junkie

When Michael Somers returns to the small town where he had a troubled upbringing, he is isolated and shunned.

Through the unlikely catalysts of an injured falcon, and a derelict hardware store that once belonged to his father, Michael unwittingly becomes the focus for people who are struggling with their own lives.

Pete Ellis is losing his wife, Rachel, and everything he does to try to rescue his marriage seems to backfire on him, while Susan, Michael's neighbour, is trying to cope with her troubled son and her feelings for the town cop, who is in love with her.

The harsh, but also beautiful snow-covered mountains of the Pacific Northwest where the story is set, reflects the characters themselves. They are neither all good nor all bad, but are capable of both.



Please make sure the price says "Kindle Price $0.00″ before clicking “Buy”. If it says "Prime Members $0.00″ “read for free”, it is NO LONGER FREE. All books are free at the time they are posted but are subject to change back to full price at any time. If you are outside of the United States, these books may not be free.

Love Begins
by Teresa Slack
Rating: 4.8 Stars
Genre: Christian Fiction
Price: $0.00 Save $2.99
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

Abandoned by her parents, Michelle Hurley and her kid sister Nicole are reminded every day their livelihood depends on a grandmother who never wanted them.

Nearly twenty years later, Michelle has accepted the fact she isn’t worthy of the love she so desperately needed as a child. She lives alone on the family farm and is content in the niche she’s carved out for herself.

All that changes the morning Nicole abandons her two young children under Michelle’s lilac bushes. Michelle doesn't want her life to change. She doesn’t want to be responsible for fixing Nicole’s mistakes.

Nor does she want to admit she may be more like the grandmother she can’t forgive.

Having two little kids suddenly dependent on her isn't the only change in Michelle’s life. The only man to ever make her take a chance on love reenters her world and makes her question every decision she ever made.

Kyle Swann reminds her that nothing has turned out the way she hoped it would. He also makes her realize shutting her heart against the world might not be as easy as she thought.


Stealing Destiny
by J.D. Selmser
Rating: 5.0 Stars
Genre: Paranormal
Price: $0.00 Save $12.99
Subject to change back to full price at any time.

It took one kiss for Destiny to steal his heart and Damien lived his life for another one from the woman he loved. If he only knew that that one kiss would lead to his death and eternal damnation, would he still have kissed her?

In one mere second of time, Damien loses his life because of a supernatural twist. On a stormy night in the back roads of nowhere his car careens out of control and into a field claiming his life.

Suddenly, everything he ever thought about heaven, hell and angels takes on a whole new meaning as he struggles to get his life back. Falling from heaven, Zahir makes the ultimate sacrifice but who is to benefit from it?

When Zahir stole Damien's future, his destiny and his body, he decides it's time to steal it back. But then he is offered a choice between the life he was destined to live and the one Death offers him, putting him at a crossroad.

Damien wants to make the best choice he can so that he can carry out his plans to marry Destiny.

However, what Damien fails to recognize is that getting his life back is going to take him into a whole new dimension of what the afterlife means.

In every lovers triangle there has to be someone who loses. No romance ever truly sees the happily ever after. One fell from heaven, someone is headed for hell and Destiny is the prize.

When your heart and soul hang in the balance, is there ever really any second chances?


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Check out the lineup of Kindles here!

Thursday, 30 October 2014

The Digital Reader

The Digital Reader

The Morning Coffee – 31 October 2104

Posted: 30 Oct 2014 07:58 PM PDT

Here are 8 stories to read this morning.

  • After privacy glitch, the ball is now in our court (District Dispatch)
  • Agents Behaving Badly(A Newbie’s Guide to Publishing)
  • Amazon's Impact on Publishing? It's Complicated (PW)
  • Ask The Chefs: How Do You Stay Informed About Scholarly Publishing? (The Scholarly Kitchen)
  • Flipboard, Circa, And Yahoo Deliver The News (ReadWrite)
  • Madefire Updates Motion Book Tool to Add Animation Features (TNW)
  • OdiloConsortia to power the eBook pilot project for the State Library of NSW in Australia (No Shelf Required)
  • The publishers that put their content directly on social platforms (Digiday)

The post The Morning Coffee – 31 October 2104 appeared first on The Digital Reader.

UK Moves to Solve Orphan Works Problem

Posted: 30 Oct 2014 05:54 PM PDT

web-copyright-2[1]Copyright may be one of the underpinnings of the publishing industry but it has clay feet: orphan works. It’s not uncommon for a really old work, or old personal documents, to sit molding in an archive because the copyright holder either can’t be identified or can’t be reached.

To solve that problem, the UK is implementing a license scheme which is expected to make up to 91 million works available for public use, including cultural artifacts which literally had no owner:

Another beneficiary is The Museum of the Mind, which holds a wide range of culturally valuable works created by people who worked and were treated at the Bethlem Royal Hospital, which was founded in 1247 and was the first institution in the UK to specialise in the care of the mentally ill.

Many of the works they hold were collected from patients and staff by psychiatrists interested in the therapeutic value of creative expression and the rights then transferred to the museum.

The Imperial War Museum is among an alliance of UK museums, libraries and other bodies backing the Free Our History campaign, which is seeking to allow original letters, diaries and other important historical works to be displayed for the nation during the First World War Centenary.

That last is rather interesting from a US viewpoint; under US law those antique personal documents would have no copyright until they were published for the first time. I know of a very similar situation where a US university is digitizing and publishing personal journals from the 1800s. The journals had been either left to the school or collected by a historian, and now the school is filing for the copyright. (It’s not a perfect parallel, I know.)

The UK is making the works available in compliance with the EU’s Orphan Works Directive, the European Union’s patchwork solution to the concatenation of current copyright law’s problems: automatic registration and a copyright term of death plus 70 years.

While one could argue that automatically conferring a copyright on every single possible work helps creators, a copyright term of death plus 70 years helps no one – aside from a handful of corporations, and possibly a cryogenically suspended Walt Disney.

This has kept valuable historical documents hidden away, including:

The National Records of Scotland have a collection of over 150,000 maps and plans, most of which are unpublished. The archive sometimes knows the name of the authors but often does not know when they died or who their beneficiaries might be.

The collection includes a large number of plans relating to Victorian engineering projects, such as the Forth Bridge, which were unavailable for reuse as they couldn’t be copied.

Don’t get me wrong, I am pleased that these documents are finally seeing the light of day, but I also think that the orphan works law is a solution which is just as flawed as the problem it is trying to solve.

The orphan works directive itself creates a problem, namely that if and when the copyright holder is identified that individual will find that his IP has been infringed.

I think a better idea would be to fix copyright law by removing the compulsory registration or shorten the term, thus eliminating the problem in the future.

A radical idea, I know, but when you have century old documents which can’t be used because of copyright issues, it’s a sign that there is an inherent flaw in the existing laws.

The Independent

The post UK Moves to Solve Orphan Works Problem appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Spain Passes the Google Tax, And Makes Other Terrible Changes to Copyright Law

Posted: 30 Oct 2014 06:24 PM PDT

7027608495_daeb33feb7_b[1]A new amendment to Spanish copyright law passed the upper house of Spain’s Cortes Generales today, and it is due to become law next year. El Pais reports that the amendment makes a number of revisions to existing law, including the creation of a controversial tax on news aggregators.

The new law makes many problematic changes, including requiring universities to pay fees to a collection society for digital course materials which had otherwise been released under a CC license, but the one I am most interested in today is the tax on news aggregators.  (You can find a complete breakdown on the changes on Google en Espanol.)

Colloquially known as the Google tax, the new law is intended to force Google as well as other search engines and news aggregators to pay for the use of links to news articles published elsewhere.

But it probably won’t work – at least not with Google.

The text of the changes to Spanish copyright law (PDF) is difficult to understand, but Spanish news sources say that it is actually worse than previously expected.

The law gives copyright holders the inalienable right to be paid for the use of their work – including a link. This means that they can’t decide to give away the content for free, something Google has required in Germany and elsewhere.

TBH, I’m not sure myself that the law says that links must be licensed, but the text of the law  (PDF) is convoluted enough that I am not comfortable arguing with a native speaker.

On the plus side there is an exception for excerpts used for news and entertainment purposes, which means sites like this blog are safe (social networks might also be covered), but the law is still going to compel aggregators like Reddit, Google News, and Spain’s own Menéame to pay for the use of links.

And just so we’re clear, one of the core concepts of the internet, the web link, is now considered to be copyright infringement in Spain when used by certain parties.

Please excuse while I go roll a SAN check.


It’s not clear where news sites and aggregators in Spain will be going from here, but I do know that Google has already issued a statement (originally in Spanish):

We are disappointed with the new law because we believe that services like Google News help publishers to drive traffic to their websites. As regards to the future, we will continue working with Spanish publishers to help them increase their income while we consider our options under the new regulation.

Google hasn’t said how they will respond to the changes in the law but I would bet that at a minimum Google will be delisting any site that might be covered by the new provisions. The search engine giant has taken similar steps in the past, including in Belgium and Germany, when other publishers tried to force it to pay for the free advertising it sends them.

There’s even a chance that Google might pull out of Spain entirely, but at this point that is just wild speculation.

All I know for sure today is that most if not all of the publishers who pushed for this Google tax will come to regret it in short order. It is safe to say that these sites rely on Google for anywhere between a quarter and half of their site traffic, and with Google no longer sending visitors their way the drop in traffic will quickly be felt in the pocketbook.

To be fair, some of the publishers may have already adapted their business model to depend on other sources. The UK’s Telegraph, for example,  boosted their site traffic by 20% in June by focusing on better promoting on Facebook.

I do not know that any of the Spanish publishers who backed the Google tax will be able to make similar boasts, though.

image by Tax Creditsefile989

The post Spain Passes the Google Tax, And Makes Other Terrible Changes to Copyright Law appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Xiaomi is the Fourth-Largest Maker of eReading Devices

Posted: 30 Oct 2014 06:22 PM PDT

xiaomi_mi_3_india_launch[1]When it comes to ereading devices, smartphones and tablets will always outnumber true ereaders. This has led to Apple being one of the largest seller of ebooks, and if Xiaomi can find a way to capitalize on their device sales they too could be one of the majors.

New estimates from IDC today peg Xiaomi as the 4th largest seller of smartphones and tablets. While Xiaomi has only a negligible presence in the global tablet market, IDC estimated that it sold 17.3 million smartphones. That put Xiaomi just ahead of Lenovo in terms of smartphone sales but behind Lenovo in terms of combined sales.

For a company that is not active in Europe or the Americas, that’s not bad.


Xiaomi is focused primarily on China, and it has recently expanded into India, Singapore, and the Philippines. The company is reportedly gearing up to enter other major Asian markets as well as Brazil, Mexico, and other parts of South America.

The company makes a number of smartphone models as well as several phablets and a tablet, but that’s not where it gets most of its revenues. As the founder explained in an interview earlier this year, Xiaomi operates more along the lines of Amazon than Apple.

Xiaomi sells smartphones cheap so it can make money off of the services that run on the devices. This includes an ebookstore which was launched late last year, but that’s just one of the services integrated into Mui, Xiaomi’s custom version of Android.

I don’t know that Xiaomi will ever be a major ebook retailer, but with the kind of sales it has now this is a company to watch.  On the other hand, Xiaomi might end up taking the same route as Samsung, and simply letting third-party sellers like Amazon dominate its hardware platform.

We’ll just have to wait and see.

idc_tablets_q3_2014 idc-stats

Liliputing, VentureBeat

The post Xiaomi is the Fourth-Largest Maker of eReading Devices appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Google Play Books Updated with New Skim Mode, Better Support for Non Fiction

Posted: 30 Oct 2014 06:21 PM PDT

google play booksGoogle first got its start in ebooks with the often maligned book scanning project, and with the latest update to Google Play Books it is returning to its academic roots.

The tech giant announced a new version of Google Play Books today which features better support for non fiction ebooks. (The apps have not been released as of the time I published this post.) According to Google, the new apps will enable readers to  easily skim an entire book, browse all their notes and highlights, and quickly jump back and forth between different locations in the book.

The new apps will feature better support for managing your notes and highlights, which could be a nice compliment tor textbooks and study guides. Readers can also use the quick bookmark function to quickly jump around in a book, back and forth between multiple spots (different parts of a history book, for example).

And last but not least the app now features a skim mode which should make it easier to flip through an ebook in much the same way that a reader might flip through a paper book while searching for the info they need.

Books Update - Skim Mode (1)

Google Play Books is now available in 61 countries around the world, and supports apps on Android, iOS, and Chrome. it is, by my guess, one of the top 5 ebookstores in the world. I like to sum up the market as: Amazon, Apple, and the trailing three (Kobo, Google and B&N).

The post Google Play Books Updated with New Skim Mode, Better Support for Non Fiction appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Onyx Teases Us With New Glimpse at the Boox i86 8″ Android eReader

Posted: 30 Oct 2014 06:20 PM PDT

onyx boox i86 1 Onyx hasn’t said much about their upcoming 8″ ebook reader since first quietly announcing it this spring, so when these several photos crossed my desk today I had to share.

Onyx showed off the i86 and other ereaders at the Hong Kong Electronics Fair earlier this month, and got a few photos. To be honest, I don’t have much to show you and tell you other than the 3 photos, but I found them interesting and I bet I am not the only one who feels that way.

Zol didn’t offer much in the way of detail, but the photos tell us that the i86 now sports a pair of page turn buttons to the left of the 8″ screen. In comparison to the original product image, it has a decidedly lopsided appearance (which may or may not be a good thing).

onyx boox i86 3 onyx boox i86 4 onyx boox i86 2

According to the original specs, the i86 runs Android 4.0 on a 1GHZ CPU with 512MB RAM. It has Wifi, Bluetooth, 4GB internal storage, and a microSD card slot. The spec list also mentioned text to speech, suggesting that the i86 also has at least a headphone jack.

The 8″ Pearl E-ink display has a resolution of 1,600 x 1,200. That gives it a sharpness of about 250 ppi. That’s not a sharp as the 6.8″ screen on the Aura H2O or the T68 Lynx, much less the super high resolution screen of the Kindle Voyage, but what the i86 lacks in sharpness it makes up for in size.

When it comes to larger ereader, the screen on the i86 is the sharpest available.  And on top of the high resolution screen you’ll find a frontlight and an IR touchscreen from Neonode.

In terms of ebook compatibility, the i86 supports a broad range of formats, including ebook formats like (DRMed) PDF, (DRMed) Epub, and FB2 in addition to document formats like Doc, CHM, html, and RTF. There’s also support for MP3 playback. This device is running the same reading app as on Onyx’s other Android-based ebook readers (with the same note-taking and scribbling abilities).

Onyx hasn’t said when we might see the i86 on the market, and since we have so little information it is too early to speculate. Instead I will be keeping an eye on Mobileread Forums; Onyx sometimes posts product announcements there.

The post Onyx Teases Us With New Glimpse at the Boox i86 8″ Android eReader appeared first on The Digital Reader.

Sony Developing New eBook DRM Platform, Exploring the Idea of Used eBooks Sales

Posted: 30 Oct 2014 06:16 PM PDT

5164025887_98f2a9d37c[1]Sony may have gotten out of the consumer ebook market in May of this year, but that doesn’t mean they lost all interest. A new report is coming in today that, in addition to developing a new ebook DRM, Sony is looking into used ebooks.

Details are still scarce, but reports that the new project is being developed by Sony DADC, a completely different part of Sony from the previous ebook efforts. This firm is primarily interested in DVDs and CDs (they also made LaserDiscs way back when) but Sony DADC also develops the DRM and related tech used on those physical disks, and they have recently turned their attention to ebooks.

Sony isn’t sharing very many details, but they are saying that under their system, the seller will be able to transfer a sold ebook to the buyer and in the process lose access to the file. I can also report that this new DRM platform is indeed based on the work of Marlin, the cooperative DRM development group that Sony has been investing in for the past several years.

The Marlin ebook DRM platform, which I have reported on once or twice in the past, doesn’t have a huge presence in the market but it has shown up here and there. The platform supports consumers lending an ebook to their friend, and it also supports library loans and on the fly renewals.

And yes, it also supports the option of reselling a used ebook.

Sony hasn’t said how wide the interest is in the new DRM, but they did report that the first contracts with publishing customers have already been signed. The system is due to go live in the next 3 to 6 months.

To be honest, I think my source is overstating the possibility of used ebook sales; at this point we don’t even know who is planning to adopt the DRM and to what degree it will be supported, so it’s far too early to suggest that consumers will be able to resell ebooks.

eBooks are actually licensed and not sold, but it is arguably legal to sell them in the US and in parts of Europe. But since this issue hasn’t been decided either in the courts or by legislators it is too early to say whether it is a practical possibility.

And then there’s the question of publisher and retailer adoption, without which you have nothing to resell.

But in spite of the unanswered questions, I do expect to see this DRM platform show up here and there. FBReader announced earlier this year that they will be integrating Marlin DRM into their app. This should enable the app to support ebooks bought from ebookstores which (I assume) are working with Sony support this DRM.

I doubt Sony new DRM will supplant Adobe in the larger ebook market, but that doesn’t mean it won’t be used. Adobe might be the most visible DRM when it comes to Epub ebooks but they’re not the only one. Kobo, Google, and Apple all use their own unique type of DRM internally, and so does Oyster, the subscription ebook service.

image by Steve A Johnson

The post Sony Developing New eBook DRM Platform, Exploring the Idea of Used eBooks Sales appeared first on The Digital Reader.