I had a post scheduled for this morning that I bumped to Wednesday to make room for an unusual post.
First, many people may know that I am a huge fan of my kindle. I posted a review when I got my original kindle, first generation. But I never really updated the review when I bought the second generation (which is a big improvement). I share the account with several missionary friends (Chile and France) and my brother. So we have five kindles that share an account. If a book is purchased by one of us, we all can read it. This isn’t talked about much as a feature for kindle, but it is a great one. I also enabled the kindles to listen to my Audible.com account. So each of them can listen to any audiobooks I buy from Audible. (By the way, if you are interested in both Audible.com and a Kindle. You can get $100 off a kindle when you sign up for a 1 year subscription to Audible.)
I bring this up primarily to talk about free books. One of the best parts of the Amazon Kindle world is the free books. Often the books are free for only a few days (sometimes just a few hours) to boost sales and get them recognized on the bestseller charts. Other times, the books are free for a longer time because they are the first book in a series, and the author/publisher want you to buy the rest of the books in the series. That has certainly worked for me. There is a wide variety of books that are free so there is probably something for almost anyone. Since the beginning of January, I have “purchased” 22 books from Amazon that were completely free. There have been about another 10, that were also free that either I didn’t get in time, or were in genres that I knew I would not read (mostly romance/horror). There were also another 4 or 5 books that I was able to get free from other sources. Today there were a bunch of new free books announced, including: Rob Bell’s Velvet Elvis, A Biography of John Newton, and four fiction books from Zondervan (Never Say Never, Talk of the Town, Peculiar Treasures, and Daisy Chain (All four fiction books look like they are either teen girl or Christian romance books.) Also yesterday Zondervan release two legal thrillers for free, Deadlock and Sins of the Fathers. If you have a kindle and want to hear about free kindle books you should subscribe to the RSS feed of Books on the Knob or their twitter account.
ChristianAudio.com gives away one audiobook a month. This month it is Religion Saves by Mark Driscoll, a book based on questions that were asked by visitors to Mars Hill Church website. I haven’t listened to it yet, I am often 3 or 4 months behind when I get around to listening to these books. But many of them are really good. I have reviewed a couple of books from ChristianAudio, including some of my favorite from the last year. These are all MP3 format audiobooks, so you can burn them to cd, listen to them on your computer or any music player. Audible.com has also been giving away free books (four in the last couple months.)
I also updated the design of the blog yesterday. I am beta testing a theme that John Saddington designed call StandardTheme. When I updated it I decided to change my subtitle. It used to be “Random and Very Occasional Musings” which turned into “Mr. Shields: No one calls me that” to now “Mr Shields: I am a reader not a fighter”.
Last but definately not least, I am sending out a call for book reviews. I just am not going to be able to maintain a three book a week pace forever. So I would like to start doing at least two guest posts a month. If you would like to post your own book review email me Adam at Chicago2000.net. I am not sure I can afford to do it for long. But for the next two months I will give $10 Amazon gift certificates to reviews that I post.
Also if you want to be really helpful. Whenever you are planning on buying something on Amazon, come to this blog and click on one of the book links. That will take you to Amazon and you will be seen as having been referred by this site. Depending on what you buy I can get some referral income. It isn’t much (I have made $2.58 so far). But it might be enough to pay for the guest posts and blog hosting.