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Tue August 26 2014

Kobo Aura H20 Officially Announced

09:51 PM by tnforpaul45 in E-Book Readers | Kobo Reader

Cool

Tech Specs:
http://www.kobo.com/koboaurah2o#techspecs

Ongoing Discussion:
MobileRead

More Details:
The Digital Reader

[ 65 replies ]


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Sat August 23 2014

September 2014 Book Club Vote

04:02 PM by WT Sharpe in Reading Recommendations | Book Clubs

September 2014 MobileRead Book Club Vote

Help us choose a book as the September 2014 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 September 20th. Select from the following Official Choices with three nominations each:

The Giver by Lois Lowry
Amazon US / Goodreads

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Jonas' world is perfect. Everything is under control. There is no war or fear or pain. There are no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the Community. When Jonas turns twelve, he is singled out to receive special training from The Giver. The Giver alone holds the memories of the true pain and pleasure of life. Now, it is time for Jonas to receive the truth. There is no turning back.

The Call of the Wild by Jack London
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub

Spoiler:
The Call of the Wild is a novel by Jack London published in 1903. The story is set in the Yukon during the 1890s Klondike Gold Rush—a period when strong sled dogs were in high demand.

From Banned Books Awareness:

The book is commonly challenged in the United States because of its violent scenes. Jack London personally experienced the Klondike Gold Rush, including its triumphs and its horrors. The Yukon of the early 20th century wasn’t a Sunday picnic. It was barren, and hard on the mind and body.

Dogs like Buck were cheap, and animal cruelty was commonplace, leading some to criticize London of glorifying or condoning animal abuse.

Furthermore, the real-life atrocities committed against Native tribes in the name of Manifest Destiny were thought of as just and honorable in the wake of the Great Indian Wars that wiped out the cultures across the United States.

This point of contention is explored in the tribe that takes in Buck, the Yeehats. This tribe is entirely of London’s creation, but some groups feel that the negative light he sheds on the Yeehat is a slam against all Native tribes.

So, here we are again, having an early American novel about a period in history challenged because it paints a picture of a past that is dark and bloody that we’d much rather forget about than admit to, or learn from.

But most notably, according to the University of Pennsylvania, Jack London’s writing was not favored among several European dictatorships during the 1920’s and 1930’s, resulting in many regimes censoring his work.

In 1929, Italy and Yugoslavia banned Call of the Wild for being ‘too radical’. London’s works were also burned by the Nazi Party in 1933 because he had an infamous reputation for being an outspoken supporter of Socialism.

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US / Angus & Robertson / B&N / Google Play / Kobo US / Overdrive

Spoiler:
Harper Lee's Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south—and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred, available now for the first time as an e-book.

One of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than forty languages, sold more than thirty million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the twentieth century by librarians across the country. A gripping, heart-wrenching, and wholly remarkable tale of coming-of-age in a South poisoned by virulent prejudice, it views a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, as her father-a crusading local lawyer-risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
Amazon UK / Amazon US / Barnes & Noble / Overdrive UK / Overdrive US / Pottermore GBP / Pottermore USD

Spoiler:
NOTE: This book is also known as Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.

Harry, an orphan, lives with the Dursleys, his horrible aunt and uncle, and their abominable son, Dudley.

One day just before his eleventh birthday, an owl tries to deliver a mysterious letter the first of a sequence of events that end in Harry meeting a giant man named Hagrid. Hagrid explains Harry's history to him: When he was a baby, the Dark wizard, Lord Voldemort, attacked and killed his parents in an attempt to kill Harry; but the only mark on Harry was a mysterious lightning-bolt scar on his forehead.

Now he has been invited to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where the headmaster is the great wizard Albus Dumbledore. Harry visits Diagon Alley to get his school supplies, especially his very own wand. To get to school, he takes the Hogwarts Express from platform nine and three-quarters at King's Cross Station. On the train, he meets two fellow students who will become his closest friends: Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger.

Harry is assigned to Gryffindor House at Hogwarts, and soon becomes the youngest-ever Seeker on the House Quidditch team. He also studies Potions with Professor Severus Snape, who displays a deep and abiding dislike for Harry, and Defense Against the Dark Arts with nervous Professor Quirrell; he and his friends defeat a mountain troll, help Hagrid raise a dragon, and explore the wonderful, fascinating world of Hogwarts.

But all events lead irrevocably toward a second encounter with Lord Voldemort, who seeks an object of legend known as the Sorcerer's Stone.

The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
Amazon

Spoiler:
No synopsis provided.

Rabbit Run by John Updike
No links provided.

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:
Rabbit, Run is the book that established John Updike as one of the major American novelists of his—or any other—generation. Its hero is Harry “Rabbit” Angstrom, a onetime high-school basketball star who on an impulse deserts his wife and son. He is twenty-six years old, a man-child caught in a struggle between instinct and thought, self and society, sexual gratification and family duty—even, in a sense, human hard-heartedness and divine Grace. Though his flight from home traces a zigzag of evasion, he holds to the faith that he is on the right path, an invisible line toward his own salvation as straight as a ruler’s edge.

From Banned Book Club:
Labeled as obscenity (for sex scenes and promiscuity) and banned in Ireland (1962) by the Irish Board of Censors, but apparently was allowed into circulation in 1967. This board, btw, apparently still exists – meets in secret BUT is required to review all submissions (some check whoever submitted a complaint regarding the Bible, in 1988). In the US, was challenged in Maine (1976) and Wyoming (1986) – the Maine students were allowed to read it if parents granted permission. (Well, the whole story felt remarkably like a field trip…)

The Country Girls by Edna O'Brien
Amazon Au / Amazon UK / Goodreads

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Meet Kate and Baba, two young Irish country girls who have spent their childhood together. As they leave the safety of their convent school in search of life and love in the big city, they struggle to maintain their somewhat tumultuous relationship. Kate, dreamy and romantic, yearns for true love, while Baba just wants to experience the life of a single girl. Although they set out to conquer the world together, as their lives take unexpected turns, Kate and Baba must ultimately learn to find their own way.

"It's a difficult trip, this coming of age . . . O'Brien tells it with love and outrage, compassion and contempt." (Los Angeles Times Book Review)

"A treasure . . . powerful . . . intelligent . . . ironic." (The New York Times Book Review)

Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: Kindle | Kindle (Omnibus) | ePub

Spoiler:
GA Russell:

It's been quite a while since I have read of its being challenged, but back in the '70s it was an annual event for parents of public school children to object to its presence in the schools' libraries because it includes the use of the "n-word."

I read it when I was in the eighth grade, and I'm sure that as an adult I would get much more out of it now.

Fanny Hill: Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure by John Cleland
Amazon US / Feedbooks / Project Gutenberg

Spoiler:
From Amazon:

Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure (popularly known as Fanny Hill), is an erotic novel by John Cleland first published in England in 1748. Written while the author was in debtors' prison in London, it is considered "the first original English prose pornography, and the first pornography to use the form of the novel." One of the most prosecuted and banned books in history; it has become a synonym for obscenity.

From her position of wealth and happy respectability, Fanny Hill looks back at her early life and disreputable adventures. Arriving in London alone, poor and innocent, she falls into the hands of a brothel-keeper. But only when she is separated from the man she loves does she enroll in the 'unhappy profession' of prostitution. Fanny becomes a kept woman and also works in an elegant bawdy-house, entertaining polite voluptuaries. By the age of eighteen, she can afford to retire; in her marriage she can at last combine sexual passion with romantic love.

Fanny Hill, shrouded in controversy for most of its more than 250-year life, & banned from publication in the U.S. until 1966, was once considered immoral & without literary merit, even earning its author a jail sentence for obscenity.

The tale of a naïve young prostitute in bawdy eighteenth-century London who slowly rises to respectability, the novel & its popularity endured many banning’s & critics, & today Fanny Hill is considered an important piece of political parody & sexual philosophy on par with French libertine novels.

A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US / Barnes & Noble/ Goodreads/ OverDrive (audio)

Spoiler:
From Wikipedia:

Clockwork Orange is a dystopian novella by Anthony Burgess published in 1962. Set in a not-so-distant future English society that has a culture of extreme youth violence, the novel's teenage protagonist, Alex, narrates his violent exploits and his experiences with state authorities intent on reforming him. When the state undertakes to reform Alex—to "redeem" him—the novel asks, "At what cost?". The book is partially written in a Russian-influenced argot called "Nadsat". According to Burgess it was a jeu d'esprit written in just three weeks.

In 2005, A Clockwork Orange was included on Time magazine's list of the 100 best English-language novels written since 1923 and it was named by Modern Library and its readers as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. The original manuscript of the book is located at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada since that institution purchased the documents in 1971.

[ 23 replies - poll! ]


Delaware becomes first state to give executors broad digital assets access

07:22 AM by AnemicOak in E-Book General | News

Delaware has become the first state in the US to enact a law that ensures families’ rights to access the digital assets of loved ones during incapacitation or after death.
Last week, Gov. Jack Markell signed House Bill (HB) 345, “Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets and Digital Accounts Act,” which gives heirs and executors the same authority to take legal control of a digital account or device, just as they would take control of a physical asset or document.

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2...assets-access/

[ 12 replies ]


MobileRead Week in Review: 08/16 - 08/23

06:00 AM by Alexander Turcic in Miscellaneous | Week in Review

Been away? Fear not! Here is your chance to check out what appeared on our frontpage this week:

E-Book General - News

E-Book General - Reading Recommendations


Thu August 21 2014

Samsung-made Nook tablet announced by Barnes & Noble

07:24 AM by alanHd in E-Book General | News

"Barnes & Noble has unveiled a customised version of an existing Samsung tablet as a replacement for the Nook HD+, which it manufactured itself.

The US book chain is marketing the device as the "first-ever full-featured Android tablet optimised for reading", based on its inclusion of pre-installed Nook apps and homescreen shortcuts.

However, its screen is lower resolution than Kobo's Android-powered Arc 7HD."

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-28872196

[ 2 replies ]


2015 Categories Poll

07:03 AM by Dazrin in Reading Recommendations | Book Clubs

2015 MobileRead Book Club Category Selection Options Vote

We need to decide on the categories for 2015. WT Sharpe has asked for someone else to lead this charge, so I thought I would at least get us started. First up, do we want to keep the same categories as 2013/2014 for 2015?

We had several suggestions in the MR 2015 Categories Discussion thread which I have summarized for the poll, more details are in the spoilers and there are links to the most descriptive post for each as well.

This poll is and open to anyone who wants to participate in the book clubs. This is a visible poll; others can see how you voted. This poll will be open until August 26th.

Everyone who wants to participate in the book club should feel free to vote.

Tie-breaker will the tied category with the most moderator votes. If there is still a tie WT Sharpe, in his role as benevolent (and neutral) dictator will choose and we will move on from there.

Do we want to keep the same categories as 2013/2014 for 2015?

  1. Yes, they are good as-is.
    Here is the list:
    Spoiler:
    January — Second Chance (no nominations, a vote of all the runners-up nominations from the last 11 months)
    February — Romance
    March — Travel/Adventure
    April — Classics
    May — Mystery/Thriller
    June — Award Winners
    July — Non-Fiction
    August — Science Fiction
    September — Banned or Challenged Books
    October — Patricia Clark Memorial Library (MobileRead Library)
    November — Foreign (Books originally written in a language other than English)
    December — Short Stories
  2. No, let's vote on the current categories to get rid of our least favorite ones. Posts 7, 8, 13.
    Here is the description:
    Spoiler:
    As something to chew on in the mean time, I would like a poll with the current categories listed and have everyone vote on their three favorite categories and replace the bottom 2-4 with new selections. That should help us keep the ones we like and reduce the number of new categories we need to come up with. Sort of a compromise between full category selections and status quo.
  3. No, let's get more non-fiction, posts 10, 11.
    Here is the description:
    Spoiler:
    Perhaps alternating between fiction and non fiction and a different genre of fiction each time? For example:
    * Jan-Fiction
    * Feb-Non Fiction
    etc.
    And something like:
    *Jan-Mystery
    *March-Sci Fi
    *May-Romance
    etc. for the fiction months. And having it be open to any topic under non-fiction on those months that are non-fiction months.
  4. No, let's use JSWolf's list, post 46, 28, 37, 40, 41.
    This is the order proposed, as updated by treadlightly:
    Spoiler:
    Jan - Anything Goes
    Feb - Romance
    Mar - Science Fiction
    Apr - Humor
    May - Nonfiction
    Jun - Modern Fiction
    Jul - Classic
    Aug - Historical Fiction (was accidentally "not modern fiction", see comments below.)
    Sep - Fantasy
    Oct - Mystery
    Nov - Thriller/Suspense
    Dec - Second Chance (the year's second place titles)
  5. No, let's have a new vote (Dazrin's suggestion), posts 39, 25, 27.
    Here is the description:
    Spoiler:
    Since nobody wants to redo the category nominations we did in 2012; let's have 3 simultaneous, multiple choice polls that cover most of the categories nominated in 2012. The three votes would be split into General, Non-Fiction Friendly and Fiction categories so that we will have a good variety throughout the year. Additional details in the spoiler.
    Spoiler:
    Preselected Category: No vote needed since everyone seems to like this category.
    January: Second Chance (All the runners-up from last year) - Placed in January so that way we don't need nominations during the holidays and can just have the vote which can be extended since people may be busier than normal.

    Vote 1 - General Categories: Top 4 will be selected.

    • Award Winners (choose your own award)
    • Banned/Challenged Books (someone had a problem with this book somewhere)
    • Classics (choose your own definition of "classic")
    • Contemporary Books ("newer" books, any source)
    • Foreign (originally non-English)
    • MR Author (especially if we can find an author who would provide a copy of their book for discussion and discuss it with us)
    • Patricia Clark Memorial Library (celebrate our own wonderful resource!)
    • Free-For-All
    • Lottery (volunteer or winner provides a list for selection, see Literary club rotating nominations. If no one wants to provide a list, this becomes a free-for-all month.)
    • Short Stories or Essays (specific short story or a collection which could be an anthology, a collection, or a web list of "best stories", etc.)
    • Independently published books
    • Personal Favorites (what is yours? Maybe limit nominations to 1 book, but don't require a second/third?)

    Vote 2 - Non-Fiction Friendly Categories: Top 3 will be selected

    • Non-Fiction (anything non-fiction)
    • Science
    • Philosophy
    • Biography/Memoirs
    • Travel/Adventure (could be fiction or non-Fiction)
    • History
    • Mythology (and folk tales, etc)
    • Humor (could be fiction or non-fiction)

    Vote 3 - Probably Going to be Fiction Categories: Top 4 will be selected, see note about SF/F.

    • Romance
    • Crime (fiction or non-fiction)
    • Mystery (cozy mysteries, etc.)
    • Thriller/Suspense (hard to be cozy with the action and/or tension in here)
    • Historical Fiction
    • Graphic Novels
    • Young Adult
      Note: Final selection will be limited to at most 2 of the following (to prevent saturation):
    • Speculative Fiction (catch-all for fantasy, science fiction, horror, steampunk, etc.)
    • Science Fiction (general sci-fi, Space opera, post-apocalyptic, etc.)
    • Fantasy (magic is generally involved)
    • Urban Fantasy (and paranormal or other contemporary magic.)
    • Horror (Psychological, physical, supernatural, choose your own flavor.)

    Final list would be arranged by a volunteer (I will do it if no one else wants to) in a way that makes "sense", similar to what was done for the 2012 categories.

  6. No, let's use sun surfer's list, post 54.
    Here is the proposed list:
    Spoiler:
    January - Second Chance
    February - Romance
    March - Adventure/Travel
    April - Classics
    May - Mystery/Thriller
    June - Award Winners
    July - Non-Fiction
    August - Science-Fiction or Fantasy
    September - Banned/Challenged
    October - Free-For-All
    November - Foreign
    December - Short Stories

    It's almost exactly the same as our current categories, except I've added Fantasy to Science-Fiction since there was no Fantasy, and I've replaced the MR Library with Free-For-All.

  7. No, let's have a new vote (sun surfer's suggestion), post 57
    Here is the description:
    Spoiler:
    A single category poll run by Dazrin. Multiple choice, visible votes, all votes are final so consider everything carefully beforehand, you can vote for as many or as few as you like. Voting open say two weeks to give everyone a chance to pass by here and vote. The top twelve become our categories. Any relevant ties and we have a run-off, single choice. Everyone can vote but if there’s a tie again then whatever Dazrin (or Tom) voted for breaks the tie.

    Polls only allow thirty options, so here is the list I propose using as they seem to be the thirty most popular options (most often used, repeated, talked about, nominated or supported) when looking back at previous years and previous category nominations and polls:

    Adventure/Travel
    Award Winners
    Banned/Challenged Books
    Classics
    Contemporary
    Fantasy*
    First in a Series
    Foreign (Originally Non-English)
    Free-For-All
    Historical Fiction
    History (Non-Fiction)
    Horror
    Humour
    Indie
    Mystery*
    Mystery/Thriller*
    Non-Fiction
    Not Classic or Contemporary (Around 1980-2000)
    Patricia Clark Memorial Library
    Planes, Trains and Automobiles (and Boats)
    Philosophy
    Pulp Adventure
    Romance
    Science (Non-Fiction)
    Science-Fiction*
    Science-Fiction/Fantasy*
    Second Chance
    Short Stories
    Thriller*
    Young Adult

    The apostrophe indicates similar categories that can’t all be voted into the top twelve. If a combined category (Science-Fiction/Fantasy, Mystery/Thriller) has more votes than either of its two single categories, then its two single categories are disqualified. If either single category has more votes than its combined category, then its combined category is disqualified.

    Once we have our twelve categories then Dazrin (or Tom) will sort them into appropriate months and that’s that.

  8. No, let's get rid of three low voter turnout categories, posts 67, 19, 20, 23.
    Here is the description:
    Spoiler:
    One vote to come up with the three relegated categories from the 6 lowest voter turnout categories, one nomination period for potential sub-in categories and one vote to find three categories to put in. Order is up to whomever is running the club. That order would allow people to see what is moving out which may affect what they might like to see before nominating new categories and voting them in.
  9. No, let's do something else. Explain your response in the comments, be specific.

What's next you ask? We won't know for sure until the poll is over since several of the options require additional voting; but here is what should happen: I will take the lead if item B, E, or G is chosen; items A, D and F are pretty much decided so don't require additional follow-up; and someone else will be asked to take the lead if C, H or I is chosen.For item I specifically... the reason this poll is visible is so that if the last item wins we can out whoever votes for it and one of them can take the lead.

Note for option D, the version with "historical fiction" in place of "not modern fiction (year 1999 and earlier)" had much more support and was intended to be the poll, I missed that when posting the poll originally. The spoiler shows the as-intended version now.

[ 57 replies - poll! ]


Wed August 20 2014

September 2014 Book Club Nominations

04:44 AM by WT Sharpe in Reading Recommendations | Book Clubs

MobileRead Book Club
September 2014 Nominations

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

The nominations will run through midnight EST August 31 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 September is:

Banned or Challenged Books

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 Giver by Lois Lowry
Amazon US / Goodreads

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Jonas' world is perfect. Everything is under control. There is no war or fear or pain. There are no choices. Every person is assigned a role in the Community. When Jonas turns twelve, he is singled out to receive special training from The Giver. The Giver alone holds the memories of the true pain and pleasure of life. Now, it is time for Jonas to receive the truth. There is no turning back.

(2) The Call of the Wild by Jack London
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: ePub

Spoiler:
The Call of the Wild is a novel by Jack London published in 1903. The story is set in the Yukon during the 1890s Klondike Gold Rush—a period when strong sled dogs were in high demand.

From Banned Books Awareness:

The book is commonly challenged in the United States because of its violent scenes. Jack London personally experienced the Klondike Gold Rush, including its triumphs and its horrors. The Yukon of the early 20th century wasn’t a Sunday picnic. It was barren, and hard on the mind and body.

Dogs like Buck were cheap, and animal cruelty was commonplace, leading some to criticize London of glorifying or condoning animal abuse.

Furthermore, the real-life atrocities committed against Native tribes in the name of Manifest Destiny were thought of as just and honorable in the wake of the Great Indian Wars that wiped out the cultures across the United States.

This point of contention is explored in the tribe that takes in Buck, the Yeehats. This tribe is entirely of London’s creation, but some groups feel that the negative light he sheds on the Yeehat is a slam against all Native tribes.

So, here we are again, having an early American novel about a period in history challenged because it paints a picture of a past that is dark and bloody that we’d much rather forget about than admit to, or learn from.

But most notably, according to the University of Pennsylvania, Jack London’s writing was not favored among several European dictatorships during the 1920’s and 1930’s, resulting in many regimes censoring his work.

In 1929, Italy and Yugoslavia banned Call of the Wild for being ‘too radical’. London’s works were also burned by the Nazi Party in 1933 because he had an infamous reputation for being an outspoken supporter of Socialism.

(3) To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US / Angus & Robertson / B&N / Google Play / Kobo US / Overdrive

Spoiler:
Harper Lee's Pulitzer prize-winning masterwork of honor and injustice in the deep south—and the heroism of one man in the face of blind and violent hatred, available now for the first time as an e-book.

One of the best-loved stories of all time, To Kill a Mockingbird has been translated into more than forty languages, sold more than thirty million copies worldwide, served as the basis for an enormously popular motion picture, and was voted one of the best novels of the twentieth century by librarians across the country. A gripping, heart-wrenching, and wholly remarkable tale of coming-of-age in a South poisoned by virulent prejudice, it views a world of great beauty and savage inequities through the eyes of a young girl, as her father-a crusading local lawyer-risks everything to defend a black man unjustly accused of a terrible crime.

(4) Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
Amazon UK / Amazon US / Barnes & Noble / Overdrive UK / Overdrive US / Pottermore GBP / Pottermore USD

Spoiler:
NOTE: This book is also known as Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone.

Harry, an orphan, lives with the Dursleys, his horrible aunt and uncle, and their abominable son, Dudley.

One day just before his eleventh birthday, an owl tries to deliver a mysterious letter the first of a sequence of events that end in Harry meeting a giant man named Hagrid. Hagrid explains Harry's history to him: When he was a baby, the Dark wizard, Lord Voldemort, attacked and killed his parents in an attempt to kill Harry; but the only mark on Harry was a mysterious lightning-bolt scar on his forehead.

Now he has been invited to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, where the headmaster is the great wizard Albus Dumbledore. Harry visits Diagon Alley to get his school supplies, especially his very own wand. To get to school, he takes the Hogwarts Express from platform nine and three-quarters at King's Cross Station. On the train, he meets two fellow students who will become his closest friends: Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger.

Harry is assigned to Gryffindor House at Hogwarts, and soon becomes the youngest-ever Seeker on the House Quidditch team. He also studies Potions with Professor Severus Snape, who displays a deep and abiding dislike for Harry, and Defense Against the Dark Arts with nervous Professor Quirrell; he and his friends defeat a mountain troll, help Hagrid raise a dragon, and explore the wonderful, fascinating world of Hogwarts.

But all events lead irrevocably toward a second encounter with Lord Voldemort, who seeks an object of legend known as the Sorcerer's Stone.

(5) The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
Amazon

Spoiler:
No synopsis provided.

(6) Rabbit Run by John Updike
No links provided.

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:
Rabbit, Run is the book that established John Updike as one of the major American novelists of his—or any other—generation. Its hero is Harry “Rabbit” Angstrom, a onetime high-school basketball star who on an impulse deserts his wife and son. He is twenty-six years old, a man-child caught in a struggle between instinct and thought, self and society, sexual gratification and family duty—even, in a sense, human hard-heartedness and divine Grace. Though his flight from home traces a zigzag of evasion, he holds to the faith that he is on the right path, an invisible line toward his own salvation as straight as a ruler’s edge.

From Banned Book Club:
Labeled as obscenity (for sex scenes and promiscuity) and banned in Ireland (1962) by the Irish Board of Censors, but apparently was allowed into circulation in 1967. This board, btw, apparently still exists – meets in secret BUT is required to review all submissions (some check whoever submitted a complaint regarding the Bible, in 1988). In the US, was challenged in Maine (1976) and Wyoming (1986) – the Maine students were allowed to read it if parents granted permission. (Well, the whole story felt remarkably like a field trip…)

(7) The Country Girls by Edna O'Brien
Amazon Au / Amazon UK / Goodreads

Spoiler:
From Goodreads:

Meet Kate and Baba, two young Irish country girls who have spent their childhood together. As they leave the safety of their convent school in search of life and love in the big city, they struggle to maintain their somewhat tumultuous relationship. Kate, dreamy and romantic, yearns for true love, while Baba just wants to experience the life of a single girl. Although they set out to conquer the world together, as their lives take unexpected turns, Kate and Baba must ultimately learn to find their own way.

"It's a difficult trip, this coming of age . . . O'Brien tells it with love and outrage, compassion and contempt." (Los Angeles Times Book Review)

"A treasure . . . powerful . . . intelligent . . . ironic." (The New York Times Book Review)

(8) Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
Patricia Clark Memorial Library: Kindle | Kindle (Omnibus) | ePub

Spoiler:
GA Russell:

It's been quite a while since I have read of its being challenged, but back in the '70s it was an annual event for parents of public school children to object to its presence in the schools' libraries because it includes the use of the "n-word."

I read it when I was in the eighth grade, and I'm sure that as an adult I would get much more out of it now.

(9) Fanny Hill: Memoirs for a Woman of Pleasure by John Cleland
Amazon US / Feedbooks / Project Gutenberg

Spoiler:
From Amazon:

Memoirs of a Woman of Pleasure (popularly known as Fanny Hill), is an erotic novel by John Cleland first published in England in 1748. Written while the author was in debtors' prison in London, it is considered "the first original English prose pornography, and the first pornography to use the form of the novel." One of the most prosecuted and banned books in history; it has become a synonym for obscenity.

From her position of wealth and happy respectability, Fanny Hill looks back at her early life and disreputable adventures. Arriving in London alone, poor and innocent, she falls into the hands of a brothel-keeper. But only when she is separated from the man she loves does she enroll in the 'unhappy profession' of prostitution. Fanny becomes a kept woman and also works in an elegant bawdy-house, entertaining polite voluptuaries. By the age of eighteen, she can afford to retire; in her marriage she can at last combine sexual passion with romantic love.

Fanny Hill, shrouded in controversy for most of its more than 250-year life, & banned from publication in the U.S. until 1966, was once considered immoral & without literary merit, even earning its author a jail sentence for obscenity.

The tale of a naïve young prostitute in bawdy eighteenth-century London who slowly rises to respectability, the novel & its popularity endured many banning’s & critics, & today Fanny Hill is considered an important piece of political parody & sexual philosophy on par with French libertine novels.

(10) A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
Amazon Au / Amazon Ca / Amazon UK / Amazon US / Barnes & Noble/ Goodreads/ OverDrive

Spoiler:
From Wikipedia:

Clockwork Orange is a dystopian novella by Anthony Burgess published in 1962. Set in a not-so-distant future English society that has a culture of extreme youth violence, the novel's teenage protagonist, Alex, narrates his violent exploits and his experiences with state authorities intent on reforming him. When the state undertakes to reform Alex—to "redeem" him—the novel asks, "At what cost?". The book is partially written in a Russian-influenced argot called "Nadsat". According to Burgess it was a jeu d'esprit written in just three weeks.

In 2005, A Clockwork Orange was included on Time magazine's list of the 100 best English-language novels written since 1923 and it was named by Modern Library and its readers as one of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. The original manuscript of the book is located at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada since that institution purchased the documents in 1971.

[ 64 replies ]


Whispersync for Voice goes live in the UK

04:43 AM by tubemonkey in E-Book General | News

Amazon's Whispersync comes to UK

Whispersync for Voice, Amazon’s feature which allows for synchronised reading and listening across devices, has been made available in the UK for the first time.

The technology launched in the US in 2012, and allows people to switch between reading a Kindle book and listening to the corresponding audiobook without losing their place. It is available on Kindle devices, Kindle for Android and Kindle for iOA, and has been launched by Amazon UK and Audible.co.uk.

To promote the launch, Amazon is giving away 10 titles for a limited time.

Kindle Books with Audio Companions -- 32,000+ titles

[ 9 replies ]




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