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Sat January 30 2016

MobileRead Week in Review: 01/23 - 01/30

07:00 AM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Week in Review

We know, you're busy. You'd like nothing more than to keep up with the witty kids at MobileRead live and in real-time but, it's tough. We understand. Here is our weekly round-up:

E-Book General - Reading Recommendations


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Sat January 23 2016

February 2016 Book Club Vote

11:52 AM by WT Sharpe in Reading Recommendations | Book Clubs

February 2016 MobileRead Book Club Vote

Help us choose a book as the February 2016 eBook for the MobileRead Book Club. The poll will be open for 5 days. There will be no runoff vote unless the voting results a tie, in which case there will be a 3 day run-off poll. This is a visible poll: others can see how you voted. It is You may cast a vote for each book that appeals to you.

We will start the discussion thread for this book on February 20th. Select from the following Official Choices with three nominations each:

The Case of the Velvet Claws by Erle Stanley Gardner [WT Sharpe, issybird, GA Russell]
Goodreads / Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:
California lawyer Perry Mason takes client Eva, hated as "all velvet and claws" by his secretary Della Street. Her husband George Belter is behind tabloid editor Locke, blackmail of Congressman Harrison Burke at bungled robbery with Eva, and takes bullet to the heart after bath. Forged will benefits nephew Carl, engaged to secretive housekeeper Veitch's daughter.

From Wikipedia:
The influence of the television series has given the general public the impression that Mason is highly ethical. In the earliest novels, however, Mason was not above skulduggery to win a case. In The Case of the Counterfeit Eye (1935) he breaks the law several times, including manufacturing false evidence (glass eyes). Mason manipulates evidence and witnesses, resulting in the acquittal of the murderer in The Case of the Howling Dog (1934). The Case of the Curious Bride (1934) is

… a good Perry Mason except for one great flaw, which the author would scarcely have been guilty of later on: he tampers with the evidence, by having a friend move into an apartment and testify to the state of the doorbells. … One is left with the uncomfortable idea that maybe the murder did not take place as Mason reconstructs it.

— Jacques Barzun and Wendell Hertig Taylor, A Catalogue of Crime

In the later novels, the only crime which he can be seen to commit might be illegal entry, when he and Paul Drake are searching for evidence. And even then, he would expect to put up a strong and effective defense leading to an acquittal. Hamilton Burger is constantly under the impression that Mason has done something illegal, but is never able to prove it.

Absolution by Murder by Peter Tremayne [issybird, bfisher, DrChiper]
Amazon / Kobo / OverDrive

Spoiler:
From Amazon:

In A.D. 664, King Oswy of Northumbria has convened a synod at Whitby to hear debate between the Roman and Celtic Christian churches and decide which shall be granted primacy in his kingdom. At stake is much more than a few disputed points of ritual; Oswy's decision could affect the survival of either church in the Saxon kingdoms.

When the Abbess Etain, a leading speaker for the Celtic church, is found murdered, suspicion falls upon the Roman faction. In order to diffuse the tensions that threaten to erupt into civil war, Oswy turns to Sister Fidelma of the Celtic Church (Irish and an advocate for the Brehon Court) and Brother Eadulf of the Roman church (from east Anglia and of a family of hereditary magistrates) to find the killer. But as further murders occur and a treasonous plot against Oswy matures, Fidelma and Eadulf soon find themselves running out of time.

The Blackhouse by Peter May [JSWolf, bfisher, treadlightly]
Amazon UK / Amazon US / ebooks.com / Google / Kobo UK / Overdrive / Overdrive / Overdrive

Spoiler:
From acclaimed author and television dramatist Peter May comes the first book in the Lewis Trilogy—a riveting mystery series set on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland's Outer Hebrides, a formidable and forbidding world where tradition rules and people adhere to ancient ways of life.

When a grisly murder occurs on the Isle of Lewis that has the hallmarks of a killing he's investigating on the mainland, Edinburgh detective and native islander Fin Macleod is dispatched to see if the two deaths are connected. His return after nearly two decades not only represents a police investigation, but a voyage into his own troubled past. As Fin reconnects with the places and people of his tortured childhood, he feels the island once again asserting its grip on his psyche. And every step forward in solving the murder takes him closer to a dangerous confrontation with the tragic events of the past that shaped—and nearly destroyed—Fin's life.

The Blackhouse is a thriller of rare power and vision that explores the darkest recesses of the soul.

Baltimore Blues by Laura Lippmann [obs20, Dazrin, JSWolf]
Amazon US

Spoiler:
In a city where someone is murdered almost every day, attorney Michael Abramowitz’s death should be just another statistic. But the slain lawyer’s notoriety—and his taste for illicit midday trysts—make the case front-page news in every local paper except the Star, which crashed and burned before Abramowitz did. A former Star reporter who knows every inch of this town—from historic Fort McHenry to the crumbling projects of Cherry Hill—now unemployed journalist Tess Monaghan also knows the guy the cops like for the killing: cuckolded fiancé Darryl “Rock” Paxton. The time is ripe for a career move, so when rowing buddy Rock wants to hire her to do some unorthodox snooping to help clear his name, Tess agrees. But there are lethal secrets hiding in the Charm City shadows. And Tess’ own name could end up on that ever-expanding list of Baltimore dead.

Midnight Riot(US)/Rivers of London(UK) by Ben Aaronovitch [CRussel, bfisher, issybird]
Goodreads | Amazon UK / Amazon US / Audible / Kobo

Spoiler:
From Amazon US:
Review
“Fresh, original and a wonderful read. I loved it.”—Charlaine Harris

“Midnight Riot is what would happen if Harry Potter grew up and joined the Fuzz. It is a hilarious, keenly imagined caper.”—Diana Gabaldon

“Filled with detail and imagination . . . Aaronovitch is a name to watch.”—Peter F. Hamilton

“The perfect blend of CSI and Harry Potter.” --io9.com

“Aaronovitch has created a fun and funny character in Grant, who displays wit more than snark (a welcome attitude) and shows he can think on his feet. . . . It's a great start to what will hopefully be a long series of adventures.”--SFrevu.com

From AmazonUK:
My name is Peter Grant and until January I was just probationary constable in that mighty army for justice known to all right-thinking people as the Metropolitan Police Service (and as the Filth to everybody else). My only concerns in life were how to avoid a transfer to the Case Progression Unit - we do paperwork so real coppers don't have to - and finding a way to climb into the panties of the outrageously perky WPC Leslie May. Then one night, in pursuance of a murder inquiry, I tried to take a witness statement from someone who was dead but disturbingly voluable, and that brought me to the attention of Inspector Nightingale, the last wizard in England.

Now I'm a Detective Constable and a trainee wizard, the first apprentice in fifty years, and my world has become somewhat more complicated: nests of vampires in Purley, negotiating a truce between the warring god and goddess of the Thames, and digging up graves in Covent Garden ... and there's something festering at the heart of the city I love, a malicious vengeful spirit that takes ordinary Londoners and twists them into grotesque mannequins to act out its drama of violence and despair.

The spirit of riot and rebellion has awakened in the city, and it's falling to me to bring order out of chaos - or die trying.

From GoodReads:
Probationary Constable Peter Grant dreams of being a detective in London's Metropolitan Police. Too bad his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit, where the biggest threat he'll face is a paper cut. But Peter's prospects change in the aftermath of a puzzling murder, when he gains exclusive information from an eyewitness who happens to be a ghost. Peter's ability to speak with the lingering dead brings him to the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, who investigates crimes involving magic and other manifestations of the uncanny. Now, as a wave of brutal and bizarre murders engulfs the city, Peter is plunged into a world where gods and goddesses mingle with mortals and long-dead evil is making a comeback on a rising tide of magic.

Deadly Appearances by Gail Bowen [HomeInMyShoes, CRussel, WT Sharpe]
Goodreads

Spoiler:
Andy Boychuk is a successful Saskatchewan politician – until one sweltering August afternoon when the party faithful gather at a picnic. All of the key people in Boychuk’s life – family, friends, enemies – are there. Boychuk steps up to the podium to make a speech, takes a sip of water, and drops dead. Joanne Kilbourn, in her début as Canada’s leading amateur sleuth, is soon on the case, delving into Boychuk’s history. What she finds are a Bible college that’s too good to be true, a woman with a horrifying and secret past, and a murderer who’s about to strike again.

Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey [BenG, CRussel, Mims]
Amazon US / Audible / Faded Page / Online PD

Spoiler:
From Amazon:
Brat Farrar has been carefully coached to assume the identity of Patrick Ashby, heir to the Ashby fortune who disappeared when he was 13. Just when it seems that Brat will pull off the deception, he discovers the truth about Patrick's disappearance, a dark secret that threatens to tear apart the family and jeopardize Brat's carefully laid plans. Called "the best of its kind" by the New Yorker, Josephine Tey's classic is a tale of unrelenting suspense and tension.

From New Statesman:
“Josephine Tey enjoys a category to herself, as a virtuoso in the spurious . . . the nature of the deception on this occasion is too good to give away.”

The Apothecary Rose by Candace Robb [DrChiper, WT Sharpe, sufue]
Goodreads

Spoiler:
The Owen Archer mysteries (including the short story "The Bone Jar") are set in England in the late 14th century. Owen Archer is a spy for John Thoresby, Archbishop of York and sometime Lord Chancellor of England. Owen is ably assisted in his sleuthing by an ensemble of York residents who include his wife, the Apothecary Lucie Wilton; Bess Merchet, proprietor of the York Tavern; Magda Digby, midwife; and Brother Michaelo, the Archbishop's secretary.

Full Dark House by Christopher Fowler [BenG, Mims, Dazrin]
Amazon UK / Amazon US / Kobo

Spoiler:
This mystery features the impending retirement of a Scotland Yard detective and the death of another. When Arthur Bryant is apparently blown up, his erstwhile partner, John May, begins reflecting on their first case together more than 60 years earlier. May, a raw recruit of 19, and Bryant, a 23-year-old detective, became the core of the Peculiar Crimes Unit, created to handle cases that were too important to ignore, yet that somehow seemed disproportionately insignificant in the face of the hundreds of civilians killed each night during the Blitz. Both men had been hurried through training and were suddenly faced with the strange case of the Palace Phantom, a killer victimizing the cast in an elaborate production of Offenbach's Orpheus in the Underworld. May was both intrigued by and dismayed at Bryant's methods and seeming flights of fancy. He used everything from crime-scene forensics to spiritualists to help him build his case. Fowler skillfully shifts the action between 1940 and the 21st century, building suspense and growing awareness as each case comes to its respective climax. Not surprisingly, they are connected. The details of wartime London and the destruction and deprivation of daily life are vividly conveyed. Today's teens will identify with the young lives so drastically affected by the war while following the clues, and red herrings, to a satisfactory conclusion.

Ovid by David Wishart [sufue, Dazrin, BenG]
Goodreads | Amazon UK / Amazon US / Kobo UK

Spoiler:
It's available both at Amazon US ($4.99 or free with KU) and Amazon UK (£4.99), and also at Kobo UK (also £4.99).

From Goodreads:

When young aristocratic layabout Marcus Corvinus is approached by the stepdaughter of the exiled and now dead Roman poet Ovid and asked to clear the return of the ashes for burial, he cheerfully agrees; there should, he thinks, be no problem. Only when he makes the application to the imperial authorities it’s turned down flat. So what, Corvinus asks himself, did Ovid do that was so bad that they won’t even allow his bones back into Italy?

[ 39 replies - poll! ]


MobileRead Week in Review: 01/16 - 01/23

07:00 AM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Week in Review

In case you've missed any MobileRead news from this week, here is our usual roundup:

E-Book General - Reading Recommendations


Wed January 20 2016

February 2016 Book Club Nominations

08:54 AM by WT Sharpe in Reading Recommendations | Book Clubs

Help us select the book that the MobileRead Book Club will read for February, 2016.

The nominations will run through midnight EST January 26 or until 10 books have made the list. The poll will then be posted and will remain open for five days.

Book selection category for February is: Mystery

In order for a book to be included in the poll it needs THREE NOMINATIONS (original nomination, a second and a third).

How Does This Work?
The Mobile Read Book Club (MRBC) is an informal club that requires nothing of you. Each month a book is selected by polling. On the last week of that month a discussion thread is started for the book. If you want to participate feel free. There is no need to "join" or sign up. All are welcome.

How Does a Book Get Selected?
Each book that is nominated will be listed in a poll at the end of the nomination period. The book that polls the most votes will be the official selection.

How Many Nominations Can I Make?
Each participant has 3 nominations. You can nominate a new book for consideration or nominate (second, third) one that has already been nominated by another person.

How Do I Nominate a Book?
Please just post a message with your nomination. If you are the FIRST to nominate a book, please try to provide an abstract to the book so others may consider their level of interest.

How Do I Know What Has Been Nominated?
Just follow the thread. This message will be updated with the status of the nominations as often as I can. If one is missed, please just post a message with a multi-quote of the 3 nominations and it will be added to the list ASAP.

When is the Poll?
The poll thread will open at the end of the nomination period, or once there have been 10 books with 3 nominations each. At that time a link to the initial poll thread will be posted here and this thread will be closed.

The floor is open to nominations. Please comment if you discover a nomination is not available as an ebook in your area.


Official choices with three nominations each:


(1) The Case of the Velvet Claws by Erle Stanley Gardner [WT Sharpe, issybird, GA Russell]
Goodreads / Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:
California lawyer Perry Mason takes client Eva, hated as "all velvet and claws" by his secretary Della Street. Her husband George Belter is behind tabloid editor Locke, blackmail of Congressman Harrison Burke at bungled robbery with Eva, and takes bullet to the heart after bath. Forged will benefits nephew Carl, engaged to secretive housekeeper Veitch's daughter.

From Wikipedia:
The influence of the television series has given the general public the impression that Mason is highly ethical. In the earliest novels, however, Mason was not above skulduggery to win a case. In The Case of the Counterfeit Eye (1935) he breaks the law several times, including manufacturing false evidence (glass eyes). Mason manipulates evidence and witnesses, resulting in the acquittal of the murderer in The Case of the Howling Dog (1934). The Case of the Curious Bride (1934) is

… a good Perry Mason except for one great flaw, which the author would scarcely have been guilty of later on: he tampers with the evidence, by having a friend move into an apartment and testify to the state of the doorbells. … One is left with the uncomfortable idea that maybe the murder did not take place as Mason reconstructs it.

— Jacques Barzun and Wendell Hertig Taylor, A Catalogue of Crime

In the later novels, the only crime which he can be seen to commit might be illegal entry, when he and Paul Drake are searching for evidence. And even then, he would expect to put up a strong and effective defense leading to an acquittal. Hamilton Burger is constantly under the impression that Mason has done something illegal, but is never able to prove it.

(2) Absolution by Murder by Peter Tremayne [issybird, bfisher, DrChiper]
Amazon / Kobo / OverDrive

Spoiler:
From Amazon:

In A.D. 664, King Oswy of Northumbria has convened a synod at Whitby to hear debate between the Roman and Celtic Christian churches and decide which shall be granted primacy in his kingdom. At stake is much more than a few disputed points of ritual; Oswy's decision could affect the survival of either church in the Saxon kingdoms.

When the Abbess Etain, a leading speaker for the Celtic church, is found murdered, suspicion falls upon the Roman faction. In order to diffuse the tensions that threaten to erupt into civil war, Oswy turns to Sister Fidelma of the Celtic Church (Irish and an advocate for the Brehon Court) and Brother Eadulf of the Roman church (from east Anglia and of a family of hereditary magistrates) to find the killer. But as further murders occur and a treasonous plot against Oswy matures, Fidelma and Eadulf soon find themselves running out of time.

(3) The Blackhouse by Peter May [JSWolf, bfisher, treadlightly]
Amazon UK / Amazon US / ebooks.com / Google / Kobo UK / Overdrive / Overdrive / Overdrive

Spoiler:
From acclaimed author and television dramatist Peter May comes the first book in the Lewis Trilogy—a riveting mystery series set on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland's Outer Hebrides, a formidable and forbidding world where tradition rules and people adhere to ancient ways of life.

When a grisly murder occurs on the Isle of Lewis that has the hallmarks of a killing he's investigating on the mainland, Edinburgh detective and native islander Fin Macleod is dispatched to see if the two deaths are connected. His return after nearly two decades not only represents a police investigation, but a voyage into his own troubled past. As Fin reconnects with the places and people of his tortured childhood, he feels the island once again asserting its grip on his psyche. And every step forward in solving the murder takes him closer to a dangerous confrontation with the tragic events of the past that shaped—and nearly destroyed—Fin's life.

The Blackhouse is a thriller of rare power and vision that explores the darkest recesses of the soul.

(4) Baltimore Blues by Laura Lippmann [obs20, Dazrin, JSWolf]
Amazon US

Spoiler:
In a city where someone is murdered almost every day, attorney Michael Abramowitz’s death should be just another statistic. But the slain lawyer’s notoriety—and his taste for illicit midday trysts—make the case front-page news in every local paper except the Star, which crashed and burned before Abramowitz did. A former Star reporter who knows every inch of this town—from historic Fort McHenry to the crumbling projects of Cherry Hill—now unemployed journalist Tess Monaghan also knows the guy the cops like for the killing: cuckolded fiancé Darryl “Rock” Paxton. The time is ripe for a career move, so when rowing buddy Rock wants to hire her to do some unorthodox snooping to help clear his name, Tess agrees. But there are lethal secrets hiding in the Charm City shadows. And Tess’ own name could end up on that ever-expanding list of Baltimore dead.

(5) Midnight Riot(US)/Rivers of London(UK) by Ben Aaronovitch [CRussel, bfisher, issybird]
Goodreads | Amazon UK / Amazon US / Audible / Kobo

Spoiler:
From Amazon US:
Review
“Fresh, original and a wonderful read. I loved it.”—Charlaine Harris

“Midnight Riot is what would happen if Harry Potter grew up and joined the Fuzz. It is a hilarious, keenly imagined caper.”—Diana Gabaldon

“Filled with detail and imagination . . . Aaronovitch is a name to watch.”—Peter F. Hamilton

“The perfect blend of CSI and Harry Potter.” --io9.com

“Aaronovitch has created a fun and funny character in Grant, who displays wit more than snark (a welcome attitude) and shows he can think on his feet. . . . It's a great start to what will hopefully be a long series of adventures.”--SFrevu.com

From AmazonUK:
My name is Peter Grant and until January I was just probationary constable in that mighty army for justice known to all right-thinking people as the Metropolitan Police Service (and as the Filth to everybody else). My only concerns in life were how to avoid a transfer to the Case Progression Unit - we do paperwork so real coppers don't have to - and finding a way to climb into the panties of the outrageously perky WPC Leslie May. Then one night, in pursuance of a murder inquiry, I tried to take a witness statement from someone who was dead but disturbingly voluable, and that brought me to the attention of Inspector Nightingale, the last wizard in England.

Now I'm a Detective Constable and a trainee wizard, the first apprentice in fifty years, and my world has become somewhat more complicated: nests of vampires in Purley, negotiating a truce between the warring god and goddess of the Thames, and digging up graves in Covent Garden ... and there's something festering at the heart of the city I love, a malicious vengeful spirit that takes ordinary Londoners and twists them into grotesque mannequins to act out its drama of violence and despair.

The spirit of riot and rebellion has awakened in the city, and it's falling to me to bring order out of chaos - or die trying.

From GoodReads:
Probationary Constable Peter Grant dreams of being a detective in London's Metropolitan Police. Too bad his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit, where the biggest threat he'll face is a paper cut. But Peter's prospects change in the aftermath of a puzzling murder, when he gains exclusive information from an eyewitness who happens to be a ghost. Peter's ability to speak with the lingering dead brings him to the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, who investigates crimes involving magic and other manifestations of the uncanny. Now, as a wave of brutal and bizarre murders engulfs the city, Peter is plunged into a world where gods and goddesses mingle with mortals and long-dead evil is making a comeback on a rising tide of magic.

(6) Deadly Appearances by Gail Bowen [HomeInMyShoes, CRussel, WT Sharpe]
Goodreads

Spoiler:
Andy Boychuk is a successful Saskatchewan politician – until one sweltering August afternoon when the party faithful gather at a picnic. All of the key people in Boychuk’s life – family, friends, enemies – are there. Boychuk steps up to the podium to make a speech, takes a sip of water, and drops dead. Joanne Kilbourn, in her début as Canada’s leading amateur sleuth, is soon on the case, delving into Boychuk’s history. What she finds are a Bible college that’s too good to be true, a woman with a horrifying and secret past, and a murderer who’s about to strike again.

(7) Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey [BenG, CRussel, Mims]
Amazon US / Audible / Faded Page / Online PD

Spoiler:
From Amazon:
Brat Farrar has been carefully coached to assume the identity of Patrick Ashby, heir to the Ashby fortune who disappeared when he was 13. Just when it seems that Brat will pull off the deception, he discovers the truth about Patrick's disappearance, a dark secret that threatens to tear apart the family and jeopardize Brat's carefully laid plans. Called "the best of its kind" by the New Yorker, Josephine Tey's classic is a tale of unrelenting suspense and tension.

From New Statesman:
“Josephine Tey enjoys a category to herself, as a virtuoso in the spurious . . . the nature of the deception on this occasion is too good to give away.”

(8) The Apothecary Rose by Candace Robb [DrChiper, WT Sharpe, sufue]
Goodreads

Spoiler:
The Owen Archer mysteries (including the short story "The Bone Jar") are set in England in the late 14th century. Owen Archer is a spy for John Thoresby, Archbishop of York and sometime Lord Chancellor of England. Owen is ably assisted in his sleuthing by an ensemble of York residents who include his wife, the Apothecary Lucie Wilton; Bess Merchet, proprietor of the York Tavern; Magda Digby, midwife; and Brother Michaelo, the Archbishop's secretary.

(9) Full Dark House by Christopher Fowler [BenG, Mims, Dazrin]
Amazon UK / Amazon US / Kobo

Spoiler:
This mystery features the impending retirement of a Scotland Yard detective and the death of another. When Arthur Bryant is apparently blown up, his erstwhile partner, John May, begins reflecting on their first case together more than 60 years earlier. May, a raw recruit of 19, and Bryant, a 23-year-old detective, became the core of the Peculiar Crimes Unit, created to handle cases that were too important to ignore, yet that somehow seemed disproportionately insignificant in the face of the hundreds of civilians killed each night during the Blitz. Both men had been hurried through training and were suddenly faced with the strange case of the Palace Phantom, a killer victimizing the cast in an elaborate production of Offenbach's Orpheus in the Underworld. May was both intrigued by and dismayed at Bryant's methods and seeming flights of fancy. He used everything from crime-scene forensics to spiritualists to help him build his case. Fowler skillfully shifts the action between 1940 and the 21st century, building suspense and growing awareness as each case comes to its respective climax. Not surprisingly, they are connected. The details of wartime London and the destruction and deprivation of daily life are vividly conveyed. Today's teens will identify with the young lives so drastically affected by the war while following the clues, and red herrings, to a satisfactory conclusion.

(10) Ovid by David Wishart [sufue, Dazrin, BenG]
Goodreads | Amazon UK / Amazon US / Kobo UK

Spoiler:
It's available both at Amazon US ($4.99 or free with KU) and Amazon UK (£4.99), and also at Kobo UK (also £4.99).

From Goodreads:

When young aristocratic layabout Marcus Corvinus is approached by the stepdaughter of the exiled and now dead Roman poet Ovid and asked to clear the return of the ashes for burial, he cheerfully agrees; there should, he thinks, be no problem. Only when he makes the application to the imperial authorities it’s turned down flat. So what, Corvinus asks himself, did Ovid do that was so bad that they won’t even allow his bones back into Italy?

Nominations for February are now closed.

[ 53 replies ]


Sat January 16 2016

MobileRead Week in Review: 01/09 - 01/16

07:00 AM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Week in Review

Here are the highlights from the past seven days of MobileRead:

E-Book General - News


Tue January 12 2016

Amazon Echo now reads Kindle books aloud

12:00 PM by fjtorres in E-Book General | News

http://www.aftvnews.com/alexa-can-no...book-chapters/

They finally got around to implementing Kindle TTS on the Alexa system.
For now, it's solely the Echo but the way Alexa is quietly spreading around, it might eventually show up on the FireTV or new Ford cars.

They also improved the controls for playback of Audible books.

[ 43 replies ]


Sat December 26 2015

MobileRead Week in Review: 12/19 - 12/26

07:00 AM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Week in Review

Here are the highlights from the past seven days of MobileRead:

E-Book General - Reading Recommendations


Sun December 20 2015

January 2016 VOTE

01:14 AM by WT Sharpe in Reading Recommendations | Book Clubs

MobileRead Book Club
January 2016
VOTE

Help us select the next book that the MobileRead Book Club will read for January, 2014.

Book selection category for January is:

Second Chance

There will be no nominations this month. The way Second Chance works is that the poll will be comprised of selections that either came in second place or tied for second place during the previous 11 months.

The poll will be open for 7 days (2 days longer than usual because of the holidays). There will be no runoff vote unless the voting results a tie, in which case there will be a 3 day run-off poll. This is a visible poll: others can see how you voted. It is You may cast a vote for each book that appeals to you. Here are the selections you will be considering:

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
Lost Horizon by James Hilton
The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells
The Case of the Silent Partner by Erle Stanley Gardner
The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker
Pitching in a Pinch by Christy Mathewson
The Martian by Andy Weir
The Golden Compass (UK title: Northern Lights: His Dark Materials) by Philip Pullman
The Virginian by Owen Wister
Inspector Imanishi Investigates by Seicho Matsumoto
Close Range: Wyoming Stories by Annie Proulx

<><><> Descriptions <><><>

February: Romance (2-way tie)
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Goodreads | Amazon US / Barnes & Noble US / Google Play US / Kobo US / Overdrive UK / Overdrive US

Spoiler:
A medical miracle may have bought Hazel a few years, but she’s still a terminal time bomb, suffering from stage IV cancer. At a support group for her illness, she meets fellow cancer survivor Augustus Waters, a boy who pretends to smoke cigarettes and has a prosthetic leg. With a shared obsession for the novel An Imperial Affliction and a similar sense of sarcasm, the two fall in love, despite their inevitable fate. John Green’s story is honest and hilarious, exposing the fear, anger, and sadness that accompanies a terminal illness.

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
Amazon Australia
Spoiler:
As a child, Kathy – now thirty-one years old – lived at Hailsham, a private school in the scenic English countryside where the children were sheltered from the outside world, brought up to believe that they were special and that their well-being was crucial not only for themselves but for the society they would eventually enter. Kathy had long ago put this idyllic past behind her, but when two of her Hailsham friends come back into her life, she stops resisting the pull of memory.

And so, as her friendship with Ruth is rekindled, and as the feelings that long ago fueled her adolescent crush on Tommy begin to deepen into love, Kathy recalls their years at Hailsham. She describes happy scenes of boys and girls growing up together, unperturbed – even comforted – by their isolation. But she describes other scenes as well: of discord and misunderstanding that hint at a dark secret behind Hailsham’s nurturing facade. With the dawning clarity of hindsight, the three friends are compelled to face the truth about their childhood–and about their lives now.


March: Travel/Adventure
Lost Horizon by James Hilton
Goodreads | Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon US / Kobo
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

While attempting to escape a civil war, four people are kidnapped and transported to the Tibetan mountains. After their plane crashes, they are found by a mysterious Chinese man. He leads them to a monastery hidden in "the valley of the blue moon" -- a land of mystery and matchless beauty where life is lived in tranquil wonder, beyond the grasp of a doomed world.

It is here, in Shangri-La, where destinies will be discovered and the meaning of paradise will be unveiled.


April: Classics
The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells
The Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub / Kindle
Spoiler:
From Amazon:

With his face swaddled in bandages, his eyes hidden behind dark glasses and his hands covered even indoors, Griffin – the new guest at The Coach and Horses – is at first assumed to be a shy accident-victim. But the true reason for his disguise is far more chilling: he has developed a process that has made him invisible, and is locked in a struggle to discover the antidote. Forced from the village, and driven to murder, he seeks the aid of an old friend, Kemp. The horror of his fate has affected his mind, however – and when Kemp refuse to help, he resolves to wreak his revenge.


May: Mystery/Thriller
The Case of the Silent Partner by Erle Stanley Gardner
Goodreads | Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US
Spoiler:
A dynamic young businesswoman is in danger of losing control of her flower shop, and someone sends poisoned bonbons to a nightclub hostess. Mason must reacquire some stock and defend the businesswoman. This novel is the first to feature Lt. Arthur Tragg, although far from the only time that Perry Mason—at least in spirit—said, "Legality be damned."

June: Award Winners
The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker
Goodreads | Amazon US
Spoiler:
Winner of the Mythopoeic Award in 2014 for Adult Literature.

[/I]From Amazon:[/I]

Chava is a golem, a creature made of clay, brought to life by a disgraced rabbi who dabbles in dark Kabbalistic magic. When her master, the husband who commissioned her, dies at sea on the voyage from Poland, she is unmoored and adrift as the ship arrives in New York in 1899.

Ahmad is a jinni, a being of fire, born in the ancient Syrian desert. Trapped in an old copper flask by a Bedouin wizard centuries ago, he is released accidentally by a tinsmith in a Lower Manhattan shop. Though he is no longer imprisoned, Ahmad is not entirely free – an unbreakable band of iron binds him to the physical world.

The Golem and the Jinni is their magical, unforgettable story; unlikely friends whose tenuous attachment challenges their opposing natures – until the night a terrifying incident drives them back into their separate worlds. But a powerful threat will soon bring Chava and Ahmad together again, challenging their existence and forcing them to make a fateful choice.


July: Non-fiction
Pitching in a Pinch by Christy Mathewson
Amazon US / Barnes & Noble / Kobo
Spoiler:
This is considered one of the greatest baseball books ever written. Leopold Classic Library issued a new edition three months ago, calling it "a significant literary work."

August: Science Fiction
The Martian by Andy Weir
Goodreads / Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US / Audible US
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him & forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded & completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—& even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment or plain-old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—& a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?


September: Banned/Challenged Books
The Golden Compass (UK title: Northern Lights: His Dark Materials) the first volume in the His Dark Materials trilogy by Philip Pullman
Goodreads | Amazon UK / Amazon US
Spoiler:
Lyra's life is already sufficiently interesting for a novel before she eavesdrops on a presentation by her uncle Lord Asriel to his colleagues in the Jordan College faculty, Oxford. The college, famed for its leadership in experimental theology, is funding Lord Asriel's research into the heretical possibility of the existence of worlds unlike Lyra's own, where everyone is born with a familiar animal companion, magic of a kind works, the Tartars are threatening to overrun Muscovy, and the Pope is a puritanical Protestant. Set in an England familiar and strange, Philip Pullman's lively, taut story is a must-read and re-read for fantasy lovers of all ages. The world-building is outstanding, from the subtle hints of the 1898 Tokay to odd quirks of language to the panserbjorne, while determined, clever Lyra is strongly reminiscent of Joan Aiken's Dido Twite.

October: Patricia Clark Memorial Library
The Virginian by Owen Wister
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub | Kindle
Spoiler:
In the untamed West, pioneers came to test their fortunes -- and their wills. The Wyoming territory was a harsh, unforgiving land, with its own unwritten code of honor by which men lived and died. Into this rough landscape rides the Virginian, a solitary man whose unbending will is his only guide through life. The Virginian's unwavering beliefs in right and wrong are soon tested as he tries to prove his love for a woman who cannot accept his sense of justice; at the same time, a betrayal by his most trusted friend forces him to fight against the corruption that rules the land. Still as exciting and meaningful as it was when first published one hundred years ago, Owen Wister's epic tale of a man caught between his love for a woman and his quest for justice exemplifies one of the most significant and enduring themes in all of American literature. With remarkable character depth and vivid passages, "The Virginian" stands not only as the first great novel of American Western literature, but as a testament to the eternal struggle between good and evil in humanity. With an engaging new introduction by Gary Scharnhorst, professor of English at the University of New Mexico, this volume is an indispensable addition to the library of American Western literature.

November: Foreign (originally non-English)
Inspector Imanishi Investigates by Seicho Matsumoto
Goodreads / Amazon US / Kobo
Spoiler:
From Goodreads: The corpse of an unknown provincial is discovered under the rails of a train in a Tokyo station, and Detective Imanishi is assigned to the case.

In a police procedural by Japan's foremost master of mystery, Inspector Imanishi Eitaro, a typically Japanese detective fond of gardening and haiku, must follow a killer's trail across the social strata of Japan.


December: Short Stories
Close Range: Wyoming Stories by Annie Proulx
Goodreads | Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US / Kobo
Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning and bestselling author of The Shipping News and Accordion Crimes comes one of the most celebrated short-story collections of our time.

Annie Proulx's masterful language and fierce love of Wyoming are evident in these breathtaking tales of loneliness, quick violence, and the wrong kinds of love. Each of the stunning portraits in Close Range reveals characters fiercely wrought with precision and grace.

These are stories of desperation and unlikely elation, set in a landscape both stark and magnificent -- by an author writing at the peak of her craft.


Sometimes known as "Close Range: Brokeback Mountain and Other Stories"[/q_index]

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