Yule Love These Sizzling Deals on Fire and Kindle!

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It’s tough to keep up with all the smart merchandising and discounting Amazon does this time of year, but today’s medley of limited-time holiday deals is worth making a special effort to tell you about.

$125 off Fire HDX 8.9″ – This is not the latest generation Fire HDX 8.9, but it’s still an impressive deal on the previous generation model. So it places the full-size tablet at a very attractive price point. It’s available today only, December 15th, or while supplies last. They’re cleaning out the inventory on the old models.

$20 off Amazon Fire TV – The full-featured Fire TV is on sale for $79, compared with the usual price of $99. This one is described as a “limited-time offer,” so there’s no telling how long it will last.

$30 off Fire HD Kids Edition Tablet – Again, a “limited-time” offer on the kids version of the 6″ or 7″ HD Fire tablet. They come with thick, soft protective casing and an unusual two-year, worry-free guarantee. One year of Amazon FreeTime Unlimited is included in the deal, along with best-in-class parental controls.

$20 off the Basic Kindle – Remember when we used to dream of a $50 Kindle? Well, this is pretty close: the new basic Kindle with touchscreen and Special Offers is on sale for $59, compared with the usual price of $79. You save $9 more when you add six months of Kindle Unlimited, Amazon’s subscription reading program. If you’ve been thinking you want to give this eReading thing a try but didn’t want to dig deeply into your credit card to do it, this is a good entry point.

$200 off 32GB unlocked Amazon Fire Phone – This phone is pretty terrific, based on my personal experience. I’ve been using mine since July 24th, and I even switched my cell number over from iPhone and moved from Verizon to AT&T to do it. I’m not saying there is no turning back, because the Apple Watch next year may lure me back to Apple. Meanwhile, this unlocked Fire phone can be used like an iPod Touch–everything the iPhone has without the phone. If you don’t sign up for a phone contract, it’s like a Fire Touch that takes great photos (with free unlimited storage in the Amazon Cloud for photos AND video), offers a sweet read of your Kindle books, and snaps real-world information with Firefly. Oh, and you get a year of free Prime, so this deal in effect makes the unlocked Fire Phone available for $199.

These are great products at terrific prices.

And if you click on any of the links above (or the Amazon display ads at the right of the page) when you begin your shopping, you will be giving a seasonal boost to The Kindle Chronicles through Amazon Associates commissions. Thank you for shopping here at TKC!

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TKC 332 Pamela Paul

Pamela Paul

Editor of The New York Times Book Review

Interview starts at 11:41

Many people who bought an eReader of some kind or another will use it for some things and not for others. Some people use it to travel, but at home they like to read a book. Some people use it for genre fiction but not for literary fiction. Some people prefer nonfiction in a print book, while they enjoy fiction on an eReader. I think that that kind of balancing of one’s reading diet, as one does with media overall these days, kind of makes sense.


“Can Apple Win Its E-book Appeal” by Andrew Albanese at Publishers Weekly – December 11, 2014

Tech Tip

Mayday is more tech concierge than traditional tech support

Interview with Pamela Paul

The New York Times Book Review

Inside The Book Review podcast

Books by Pamela Paul:

By the Book: Writers on Literature and the Literary Life from The New York Times Book Review

The Starter Marriage and the Future of Matrimony

Parenting, Inc.: How the Billion-Dollar Baby Business Has Changed the Way We Raise Our Children

Pornified: How Pornography is Transforming Our Lives, our Relationships, and Our Families

“Talking Books with the Editor of The New York Times Book Review” at BuzzFeed – December 12, 2014

Deep Down Dark: The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine, and the Miracle that Set Them Free by Hector Tobar

Family Life: A Novel by Akhil Sharma

The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber

Act One: An Autobiography (1959) by Moss Hart


Mystery authors recommended by Darlene:

John Sandford – Virgil Flowers series

CJ Box – Joe Picket series

Craig Johnson – Walt Longmire mysteries

Donna Leon – Comissario Guido Brunetti mysteries

Joseph Flynn- Jim McGill series

James Patterson- Women’s Murder Club series – These are old but good. The first ones are the best.

Julia Spencer Fleming

Jack’s recommended mystery writers:

Faye Kellerman – Peter Decker and Rina Lazarus Crime Thrillers series

A. Jance – A J. P. Beaumont series

Catherine Coulter – FBI series

Michael Connelly - Harry Bosch series

Sue Grafton – Alphabet series

Archer Mayor – Joe Gunther Novels

L. J. Sellers – Detective Jackson mysteries

“An Art Form Rises: Audio Without the Book” by Alexandra Alter at The New York Times – November 30, 2014

The Starling Project by Jeffery Deaver, an Audible Drama

Next Week’s Guest

Richard Hollick, author of the Making Book blog

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

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TKC 331 Peter Hudson


Co-founder and CEO of BitLit.com

Interview starts at 14:02

We do continue to see growth [in eBooks reading] amongst more of the older generation, the Boomer generation, on font size, on convenience. As Boomers retire they do more traveling. They want to travel light, to downsize their houses, they want simplification in their lives.


Moody’s Investors Service downgrades Amazon’s outlook to negative – December 1, 2014

“All the Amazon Haters Need to Hear This Quote from Warren Buffett” – Jeff Bezos video clip from Business Insider – December 5, 2014

Fire Table and E Ink Sales Soar on Black Friday – Amazon press release December 1, 2014

Tech Tip


The Magic Catalog for Project Gutenberg

Click here to download Kindle compatible catalog to your Fire or Kindle

Interview with Peter Hudson


PM Press

Braided Lives: A Novel by Marge Piercy at PM Press


Amazon Echo

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

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TKC 330 Otis Chandler


Co-founder and CEO of Goodreads

Interview starts at 22:02

The world is really moving fast towards mobile, and Goodreads is no exception. We’ve seen huge adoption of our mobile products this year, and we’ve innovated a lot on our mobile web, particularly our iOS app.


The music and blog of my talented niece, Fran Betlyon


Amazon Echo

Eddie Mikell’s YouTube demo of Amazon Echo

Free TuneIn radio app for Fire tablets

Kindle Scout

Housebroken by The Behrg – chosen for publication by Kindle Press through Kindle Scout crowdsourcing

Tech Tip

Print Your Kindle Highlights Chrome extension

Interview with Otis Chandler


If you have features you’d like to see in a future update of Goodreads on Kindle, email them to support AT goodreads DOT com


Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products by Nir Eyal

The Diamond Age (Bantam Spectra Book) by Neal Stephenson



Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

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TKC 329 Sara Nelson

Sara Nelson, Headshot

Editorial Director at Amazon.com

Interview starts at 11:43

There are all kinds of books in the world, and there are all kinds of people in the world, and there are all kinds of things that people would love to judge you for. We all do it, to some extent I suppose. We judge somebody by the car they drive, too. There’s enough of everything to go around, in my opinion.


Amazon Echo

“The Washington Post Launches New Tablet App, Free for Amazon Fire Customers” press release – November 20, 2014

The Washington Post free app for Fire tablets

“Washington Post Releases Free App for Kindle, in First Collaboration with Amazon” by Ravi Somaiya at The New York Times – November 20, 2014

“Washington Post launches twice-daily tablet editions on Amazon Fire app” by Steven Mufson at The Washington Post – November 20, 2014

Tech Tip

Adjusting Fire tablet font size through accessibility controls

Interview with Sara Nelson

Amazon editors’ selection of 100 Best Books of 2014

All Our Names: A Novel by Dinaw Mengestu


2014 National Book Award winners

Redeployment by Phil Klay

41: A Portrait of My Father by George W. Bush


Whoosh! screen cleaner, and as seen on Revision3

Next Week’s Guest

Otis Chandler, co-founder and CEO of Goodreads

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TKC 328 Scott McNulty

Scott McNulty

Author of The Amazon Fire Phone

Interview starts at 23:07

I read an interview where some Amazon exec in Europe talked about how they are learning from it, and they’re going to take their lessons and apply it to their next iteration. So that seems to me that there will be another Fire phone out there—and I’ll probably buy it!



“Amazon and Hachette Resolve Dispute” by David Streitfeld at The New York Times – November 13, 2014

“Amazon and Hachete Reach Deal Over E-Books” at Hear & Now – November 13, 2014

Hugh Howey’s blog post on Hachette agreement – November 13, 2014

“Amazon.com Should Stop Comparing the Fire Phone to the Original Kindle” by Evan Niu at The Motley Fool – November 7, 2014

Motley Fool Money podcast

Tech Tip

Amazon press release on new Kindle software – November 14, 2014

Kindle (7th generation) 5.6.1 software update

Kindle Paperwhite 2 5.6.1 software update

Kindle Voyage 5.6.1 software update

Interview with Scott McNulty

Scott McNulty profile at Linkedin

Scott McNulty’s blog

The Amazon Fire Phone: Master your Amazon smartphone including Firefly, Mayday, Prime and all the top apps by Scott McNulty

Amazon Fire Phone

Kindle Voyage


Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End  by Atul Gawande

Next Week’s Guest

Sara Nelson, Editorial Director at Amazon.com, discussing her team’s picks for The Best Books of 2014

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Amazon and Hachette Announce New Contract

Screen Shot 2014-11-13 at 11.39.44 AMAnd so it ends…


November 13, 2014 – Hachette Book Group and Amazon (AMZN) today announced that the companies have reached a new, multi-year agreement for ebook and print sales in the US.

Michael Pietsch, Hachette Book Group CEO said, “This is great news for writers. The new agreement will benefit Hachette authors for years to come. It gives Hachette enormous marketing capability with one of our most important bookselling partners.”

“We are pleased with this new agreement as it includes specific financial incentives for Hachette to deliver lower prices, which we believe will be a great win for readers and authors alike,” said David Naggar, Vice President, Kindle.

The new ebook terms will take effect early in 2015. Hachette will have responsibility for setting consumer prices of its ebooks, and will also benefit from better terms when it delivers lower prices for readers. Amazon and Hachette will immediately resume normal trading, and Hachette books will be prominently featured in promotions.

Congratulations to the negotiators on both sides who reached a deal after this long, very public ordeal. I couldn’t be happier. This is a good day for book lovers.

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TKC 327 Mike Langlois

Mike Langlois

Author of Reset: Psychotherapy & Video Games, 2nd Edition

Interview starts at 14:24

I think that kids that don’t get to play video games are missing out on whole strata of ways to negotiate a 21st century high tech world as well as peer relationships. And I don’t think it needs to be a “versus.” I love reading. And I think one of the things that’s really cool about the Kindle is that you can read on it and play video games on it, at least with the Fire.

Show Notes and Links:


Amazon Echo

James McQuivey interview on TKC 296 – March, 2014

“Your Voice Will Control the Future” by James McQuivey at Forrester – April 16, 2014

Amazon Prime Photos

“The War of the Words” by Keith Gessen at Vanity Fair – December 2014

Tech Tip

How to make a screenshot with Kindle Voyage – via Scott McNulty’s Blankbaby blog

Interview with Mike Langlois

Gamer Therapist: Psychotherapy Meets Web2.0 (blog)

Reset: Psychotherapy & Video Games,2ndEdition by Mike Langlois

Killer Covers

Second Life



Publishers Weekly’s Best Books of 2014

Best Books of November selected by Amazon’s book editors

Revival: A Novel by Stephen King

Scribd adds 30,000 audiobooks for subscribers

“Better Living Through Minecraft,” Mike Langlois’s panel schedueld for South by Southwest 2015


Katie Loss’s update on her son Eric’s adventures since returning from his solo circumnavigation which began today (November 7) in 2011. He is now captain of Pangaea Exploration’s Sea Dragon.

Next Week’s Guest

Scott McNulty, Mac expert and Fire phone expert. Author of The Amazon Fire Phone: Master your Amazon smartphone including Firefly, Mayday, Prime, and all the top apps

Music for my podcast is from an original Thelonius Monk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” by Eval Manigat on the “Variations in Time: A Jazz Persepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording”.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

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TKC 326 Aaron Goldfarb

Aaron GoldfarbAuthor of The Guide for a Single Man and The Guide for a Single Woman

Interview starts at 19:11

It’s a lot of effort to get one book, but two simultaneous books, where you’re timing and syncing everything. It was just a huge challenge for the entire FG Press team, even beyond me writing the books.

Show Notes and Links:


Amazon’s press release announcing Fire TV Stick – October 27, 2014

Amazon Fire TV – $99

Tom Semple’s comment on the Fire TV Stick, compared with the Fire TV box

Motley Fool analysis of Fire TV Stick v. Google Chromecast – October 30, 2014

“Amazon CEO Bezos Faces Season of Worsts as Losses Mount” by Spencer Soper at Bloomberg Businessweek – October 24, 2014

“Amazon.bomb” by Jacqueline Doherty at Barron’s – May 31, 1999 (Behind paywall; try Googling “Amazon.bomb.”)

Kindle Scout opens for reader nominations

Magic Numbers: The Actuary’s Diary by Deb Hosey White – my Kindle Scout nomination

Tech Tip

Kindle Voyage 3G

Setting default device at Manage Your Content and Devices

Interview with Aaron Goldfarb

The Guide for a Single Man and The Guide for a Single Woman by Aaron Goldfarb

FG Press

How to Fail: The Self-Hurt Guide by Aaron Goldfarb – Audible Audio Edition, Kindle edition

The Cheat Sheet and Drunk Drinking by Aaron Goldfarb

The Game: Penetrating the Secret Society of Pickup Artists by Neil Straus

Aaron Goldfarb interviewed by Sandy Grason of FG Press

Music for my podcast is from an originalTheloniusMonk composition named “Well, You Needn’t.” This version is “Ra-Monk” byEvalManigaton the “Variations in Time: A JazzPersepctive” CD by Public Transit Recording” CD.

Please Join the Kindle Chronicles group at Goodreads!

Send to Kindle

Amazon Introduces Fire TV Stick – $20 Off for Prime Members Today and Tomorrow

Screen Shot 2014-10-27 at 10.15.43 AMAmazon this morning introduced a competitor to the Chromecast media-streaming device that plugs into the HDMI port on your TV. It’s called Fire TV Stick, and if you are an Amazon Prime member you can buy it for $20 off today and tomorrow only–for $19 instead of $39 for non-Prime members. Fire TV stick will ship November 19.

Fire TV stick has four times the storage and two times the memory of Chromecast, Amazon says. Click here for the full press release.

It comes with a remote control, and you can use your phone as a remote with the free mobile app that includes voice search. I’m glad to see it will work right away with my Fire phone, but the app for iPad and iPhone is “coming soon.”

Fire TV stick arrives less than seven months after the introduction of Fire TV, which apparently has been a big hit. Amazon says Fire TV is the best-selling streaming media box at Amazon.com.

I’ve ordered one and will tell you about my experience with it on an upcoming episode of The Kindle Chronicles podcast.


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