Amazon accused of raising ebook prices, 4 Kindle free books + deals

Before we jump into the bizarre news of Amazon being accused of raising ebook prices let’s look at the 4 kindle free books -

  1. Breakthrough: How the 10 Greatest Discoveries in Medicine saved Millions and Changed our Lives by Jon Queijo.

    • The unforgettable life-or-death stories behind antibiotics, vaccines, DNA, X-rays, and more
    • What happened, how it happened, and what it means to you today
    • A colorful cast of characters whose discoveries were often driven not only by personal tragedy, curiosity, and hard work, but petty bickering, dumb luck, and a healthy dose of humor
    • For anyone interested in science, medicine, and beyond…

  2. 15 Successful Communication Lessons by FT Press. It’s pretty big at 1.5 MB.

    Make Your Point, Get Heard, Get Understood, and Get Action!

    Get results! Master breakthrough communications techniques for every audience and every medium-from PowerPoint to face-to-face conversations! Learn to succeed at everything from making a great first impression to communicating complex data-listening effectively to managing a flood of email

  3. Who Can You Trust with Your Money? by Bonnie Kirchner. Rated 5 stars on 5 reviews.

    Learn how to:

    Choose an honest, qualified financial advisor and avoid the crooks
    Spot the warning signs that you’re being ripped off
    Empower and protect yourself, and get more help for your money

    Is your financial advisor the next Bernie Madoff? Can you afford not to know? Get this book, and find out! Read Bonnie Kirchner’s unforgettable personal story.

  4. Thank God It’s Monday by Roxanne Emmerich. Rated 4 stars on 73 reviews.

    Whether you’re on the front line, in an office, or running the show, you’ll see how to:

    • Replace dysfunctional behaviors with passion and creativity
    • Overcome setbacks with a “bring it on” attitude
    • Breathe results-generating life into vision and values
    • Think big and make big things happen

    Thank God It’s Monday! presents a unique approach that makes an impact on three groups at once:

    • Employees discover how to win at work and love their work
    • Companies turn around results quickly and profoundly
    • Customers experience a powerful and visible commitment to their success

The last three are business books. It’s strange how business books always have all these effusive reviews from other business book authors and it’s everyone patting everyone else’s back. It’s the same way with the self-improvement type of books.

Next, let’s look at some free books from other sources (courtesy MobileRead) -

  1. We’ll Always Have Paris by Harvey Levenstein. A book about American tourists in France since 1930. Doesn’t work on Kindle – works with Adobe Digital Editions on PC. 
  2. A free collection of essays from John Scalzi (That was the Millenium that Was). Mobi Format works on Kindle without conversion. 
  3. Ministries of Mercy: The Call of the Jericho Road (audiobook) by Tim Keller. Free at Christian Audio.

We also have some good kindle book deals -

  1. Oryx and Crake: A Novel by Margaret Atwood is just $0.99. It was shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 2003 and is rated 4 stars on 356 reviews. Thanks to koland at MobileRead.

    In Oryx and Crake, a science fiction novel that is more Swift than Heinlein, more cautionary tale than “fictional science” (no flying cars here), Margaret Atwood depicts a near-future world that turns from the merely horrible to the horrific, from a fool’s paradise to a bio-wasteland.

    Snowman (a man once known as Jimmy) sleeps in a tree and just might be the only human left on our devastated planet. He is not entirely alone, however, as he considers himself the shepherd of a group of experimental, human-like creatures called the Children of Crake. As he scavenges and tends to his insect bites, Snowman recalls in flashbacks how the world fell apart.

  2. The Scrubs by Simon Wood and Simon Janus is $0.99 and rated 5 stars on 4 reviews.

    James Jeter, the notorious serial killer with a sixth sense, holds court inside London’s Wormwood Scrubs Prison. He’s the focus of the “North Wing Project.”

    Under the influence of a hallucinogen, Jeter can create an alternative world known as “The Rift” containing the souls of his victims. Pardons are on offer to inmates who’ll enter The Rift.

    Michael Keeler has nothing to lose and little to live for. He’s sent into The Rift to learn the identity of Jeter’s last victim.

  3. Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella is just $0.99.

    If you’ve ever paid off one credit card with another, thrown out a bill before opening it, or convinced yourself that buying at a two-for-one sale is like making money, then this silly, appealing novel is for you. In the opening pages of Confessions of a Shopaholic, recent college graduate Rebecca Bloomwood is offered a hefty line of credit by a London bank. Within a few months, Sophie Kinsella’s heroine has exceeded the limits of this generous offer, and begins furtively to scan her credit-card bills at work, certain that she couldn’t have spent the reported sums.

  4. Barefoot by Elin Hilderbrand. Rated 4 stars on 68 reviews and just $1.99.

    It’s summer on Nantucket, and as the season begins, three women arrive at the local airport, observed by Josh, a local boy, home from college. Burdened with small children, unwieldy straw hats, and some obvious emotional issues, the women–two sisters and one friend–make their way to the sisters’ tiny cottage, inherited from an aunt. They’re all trying to escape from something …

Finally, we get to the Amazon witch trials.

Connecticut AG a bit confused about Agency Model and new Contracts

The Digital Daily reports on the Connecticut AG’s fury at Amazon and Apple for the dastardly Agency Model -

 His office surveyed e-book prices for a number of bestsellers sold by Amazon, Apple, Borders and Barnes & Noble (BKS) and found them to be identical at all four companies.

“These agreements among publishers, Amazon and Apple appear to have already resulted in uniform prices for many of the most popular e-books — potentially depriving consumers of competitive prices,” he concluded.

It seems there are two parts to it -

  1. The AG has taken issue with the standardized pricing. This is great and perhaps he should go back to news from earlier this year and see all the fighting Amazon did against the Agency Model. 
  2. He’s also taken issue with the Most Favored Nation clause. This was Amazon making sure it didn’t get played by Apple and the Agency Model 5.

You have to wonder if there’s more to this than meets the eye. Here’s a bit more courtesy CNN Money -

“The concerns are compounded, and hence potentially more troublesome, since this arrangement appears to be something that will be agreed to by the largest e-book publishers in the United States and two competitors who combined will likely command the greatest retail e-book share,” Blumenthal wrote.

All these articles are puzzling.

Were these people sleeping when we had the entire Agency Model Battle? It’s really strange that after fighting for $9.99 and advertising that 510,000 out of 630,000 books in the Kindle Store are at $9.99 Amazon is being investigated for price-fixing.

On the flip side this might weaken and perhaps even kill the Agency Model.

Not only are the Kindle 3 and Kindle WiFi selling like crazy, the Connecticut Attorney General might end up killing the Agency Model. Not a bad week to be Amazon.

6 Responses

  1. Oryx and Crake is a freaky good book, and you should also read Year of the Flood when you have read O & C.

  2. Just tried to buy Oryx and Crake here in the UK but for us it is $8.99.

    I don’t believe that such a price is extortionate for a good novel, but knowing that millions of other readers (a mere click away) get a better deal makes you feel like a second-class customer. I’ll wait.

  3. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704271804575405181858061108.html?mod=mostpop

    Excerpt:
    Some publishers have argued that the agency pricing model fosters competition, because it allows book sellers to make money off of e-books—something that was too hard to do previously when Amazon was undercutting them with its $9.99 pricing. As a result of the better profit margins, more companies are going into e-book sales, publishers say.

    Critics of that argument say more competition is effective only if it brings down prices.

    Pricing of E-Books Draws Increased Antitrust Scrutiny

    By JEFFREY A. TRACHTENBERG And CHAD BRAY

    Just when publishers and sellers of digital books had made peace over how to price electronic titles, the market is attracting antitrust scrutiny.

    On Tuesday, Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal disclosed a preliminary review of the pricing agreements between five of the country’s largest book publishers and two leading digital retailers: Apple Inc. and Amazon.com Inc.

  4. Oryx & Crake is now showing at $9.99 for me, which is a shame because I saw the sequel in the store the other day and it reminded me I never read the first but I probably should.

  5. While I agree that authors and companies should be paid I feel that the cost should be less than that of a paperback as there are no printing costs etc. Storage is obviously electronic so significantly less than boxes of books in a warehouse that then need to be packed and distributed.

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