Category Archives: Books

Amazon Is Giving Away a Top Kindle Book for Less than Three Dollars

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Advertorial by Paul A. Achoa

Readers are usually asked to pay a premium for first-rate fiction. Recently, however, countless readers were pleasantly shocked to see one of the year’s top thrillers go on sale for just under three dollars. Widely praised for its unique and suspenseful story, The Xactilias Project had already been one of the hottest sellers on Amazon. Now, it’s getting even more interest, thanks to the unannounced price reduction, which has caused a huge stir.

“In my opinion, it’s the best book of the year without a doubt,” says Ronald J. Bushwell of the HBC Literary Review. “The story is a roller-coaster ride, and the characters are great. The dialogue, the writing. It’s all first-rate.”

The Candid Book Review’s Sarah McDaniels agrees, calling The Xactilias Project fresh and inspired.

“We’re talking about a very unique story at a time when every book seems to be a rip off of something else,” McDaniels says. “This book is special for a lot of reasons. It’s entertaining as hell. It’s really well written, and it sticks with you long after you’ve finished reading.”

Released two months ago, The Xactilias Project didn’t land on store shelves with much fanfare. In fact, it went relatively unnoticed for the first few weeks. Then, huge interest began filtering through the literary community, as readers started buzzing about this original, stimulating tale about a genius named Claire Foley who finds herself swept up in a uniquely terrifying situation.

If you think the story sounds basic, prepare to have your doors blown off: Somewhere in the shadows, a mysterious organization manipulates Claire’s every move until she finds herself in their employ. That’s when things really get delightfully strange, and soon readers are turning pages furiously to see if this empathetic figure can use her incredible wits to escape her predicament.

“One of the great things about this book is its ability to merge great writing and literary merit with good old-fashioned commercial entertainment,” says Lois McGinty of The Best Books Journal. “Right now with only a month left in the year, I have The Xactilias Project at the top of my recommendation’s list, because it’s intelligent, a bit nerve-wracking and a whole lot of fun.”

3 of the Best Novels to Read if You Like Short Stories

The Hell that Followed

Unfortunately for people who enjoy brief fiction, publishers tend to prefer full-length novels which make readers feel as though they’ve gotten their money’s worth. While you can find plenty of short fiction collections, the quality isn’t always up to par. Most of the best writers tend to craft longer books which allow them to develop characters. That said, some full-length books contain characteristics that make them appeal to readers who appreciate short stories.

Three Good Examples

Recently, I published a brief list at Amazon.com featuring the best novels to read for people who like short fiction. While all of these books are full-length; each features characteristics that will make them attractive to people who prefer short stories.

Illusions

Breezy and short, this beautiful novella is touching and funny. It’s also extremely thought-provoking and entertaining. If you’re looking for a book you can consume in a single evening; this is a fantastic option. It’s also the type of novel which will stay with you for weeks after you’ve read it.

The Hell that Followed

On sale for only $2.99 at Amazon.com, this is the best novel to read for anyone who likes their stories cut up into easily-digestible segments. With an assortment of fascinating characters, The Hell that Follows features several parallel plotlines and a brisk pace which is perfect for people who usually love shorter fiction. The plot is gritty and intense; and there’s an emotional element that will stay with you long after you’ve finished the book.

Fools Die

Author of The Godfather, Mario Puzo wrote plenty of fantastic novels before his passing in 1999; however, many people remain unaware of them. This particular novel offers an interesting mix of crime, gambling, danger and some deep insight into the confounding relationship between women and men. Focused on two different main characters, this novel jumps back and forth between plots, making it a good option for readers who generally prefer brief fiction.

New Book Lists for Thursday, May 16

A great resource which offers reliable suggestions, Listmania is quickly becoming one of Amazon.com’s most popular features. Our in-house book reviewer, Lois McGinty compiles new lists on a weekly basis to guide readers toward novels and authors that are similar to many of their favorites. Below, we’ve listed her most recent lists:

Authors Similar to James Patterson
Books Similar to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Books Similar to The Perks of Being a Wallflower
Books Like Outlander
Must Read Novels that Stick with You
Books like The Lord of the Rings
Books Like Harry Potter
Books Like Game of Thrones

If you have an idea for a new Listmania topic, contact Lois at lmcginty.kingofhowto@gmail.com.

New Book Lists for Sunday, May 5

A valuable resource that provides great book suggestions, Amazon.com’s new Listmania is quickly gaining popularity for helping readers find authors and novels which have similarities to some of their favorites. Our in-house books and publishing expert Lois McGinty creates new lists on a daily basis to help readers unearth new books they might normally overlook. Below, you’ll find a few of her most recent compilations:

Must Read Novels that Stick with You
Books Like Into the Wild
Books Like Fight Club
Books Like the Alchemist
Books like The Lord of the Rings
Books Like The Hunger Games
Books Like 1984

If you have an idea for a new Listmania topic, contact Lois at lmcginty.kingofhowto@gmail.com.

Best Fiction Books for Fans of Cormac McCarthy

Realistic Fiction Books

Widely regarded as one of the best living American writers, Cormac McCarthy has gathered a substantial following of loyal readers. Unfortunately for them, the Pulitzer Prize winning novelist has only written ten books to date. Rumor has it, the reclusive author will release a new novel called The Passenger in the coming months. Until then, readers are forced to sustain themselves on novels written in similar fashion. If you loved Blood Meridian, No Country for Old Men and All the Pretty Horses; these are the best fiction books for you.

Expert Recommendations

Our in-house books and publishing expert, Lois McGinty maintains a list of the best fiction books available at Amazon.com. Of these, she’s singled out three which are sure to appeal to fans of Cormac McCarthy.

Similar Writing

The Sound and the Fury is an ideal choice for readers who love McCarthy’s writing style; in fact, the latter readily admits that William Faulkner had a tremendous impact on shaping his own writing style. Available for $10.99 at Amazon.com, this American classic may be a little too long-winded for casual readers who don’t appreciate descriptive literary fiction.

Similar Stories

Perfect for readers who enjoy realistic fiction books, The Hell that Follows contains several characteristics that are guaranteed to appeal to fans of novels such as Blood Meridian and No Country for Old Men. The story and plot are very similar to what you might find in one of McCarthy’s novels; as is the dialog and writing. One of the best realistic fiction books at Amazon.com, this novel is available in five parts, each priced at only a dollar apiece.

Similar Prose

For readers who appreciate McCarthy’s terse, intelligent prose, any Raymond Carver novel will do. Virtually all of his books are elegant, polished and beautifully written. They’re also more suited to readers who aren’t overly fond of McCarthy’s earlier works, which can be a bit verbose at times. For a list of some of Raymond Carver’s best novels, visit this page at Amazon.com.

Best Fiction Books like Mario Puzo’s The Godfather

A cinematic masterpiece which has gained incredibly lasting pop culture appeal, The Godfather originated as a best-selling novel. Written in 1969, Mario Puzo’s fascinating crime story continues to capture the imagination of movie-goers and readers alike; so much so, many are always looking for similar novels which feature fascinating characters and intense plotlines. Below, you’ll find three of the best fiction books which are similar to Mario Puzo’s award-winning mob epic.

An Expert’s Picks

Our in-house books and publishing expert has singled out three particular novels in her Amazon.com list of the best fiction books similar to the Godfather. Not only are these novels very well-written, they center on exciting stories and deep, interesting characters.

The Last Don

Also written by Puzo, The Last Don is based on the mafia; however, there’s a fascinating parallel plotline centered on Hollywood corruption. (On sale at Amazon.com for $7.99)

  • McGinty says: “If you want a book like The Godfather, read one written by its author.”

The Hell that Followed

Much like Puzo’s mob epic, this particular novel features some deep, original villains which will live in the minds of readers long after they’ve moved on to other stories. Available in five parts at Amazon.com, this is one of the best fiction books for people who enjoy crime stories.

  • McGinty says: “This is an exceptional novel for anyone; but it’s especially ideal for readers who love Puzo.”

The Day of the Jackal

Voted one of the best crime fiction novels ever, Frederick Forsyth’s doesn’t feature the same type of criminal activity as The Godfather; however, it’s very similar in tone. Available at Amazon.com for ten bucks, The Day of the Jackal is a great choice for anyone who appreciates a good classic.

  • McGinty says: “This isn’t exactly like Puzo; however, it’s close in all the right ways.”