Amazon best sellers, Amazon Kindle, Books, E-books, fiction, GoodReads., Indie bookstores, Non-fiction, Summer reads for adults, Summer reads for children

Seven Ways to Build an Inexpensive Summer Reads list

                                                                   “Summertime and the living is easy…” 

Remember that 1935 Gershwin song from Porgy and Bess. Well the living may be easy but if you are a book lover summertime may be expensive. The prices for most traditionally published print books have climbed. E-books and the costs for download compared to print version is almost the same.

Amazon announced its ten best books of 2012 (as far as chosen by its book editors) and all ten on the list were from big-six publishers who set their own prices for the e-books. None was self-published.

Random House published most of the books and all are priced at $10.99 or above for the Kindle edition, a price underscored on the Amazon sell page that was “set by the publisher.” The prices range from $10.99 to $19.99. The average price on the list is $13.79. For many of the books on the list, the Kindle price is ranges from .99¢ to $6 cheaper than the print price.

If you’re like most booklovers, you will read 24+ books a year. More than that if you are an E-Book reader.

The average American reader comes in at 3-5 books annually. Pew Research found that the majority of print readers (54%) and readers of e-books (61%) prefer to purchase their own copies of these books. Bottom line:

                            Ave. price of book (13.79) x 24 books = $330.96 per year

                   Let’s break it down per quarter. Six books purchased for summer reads: 13.79 x 6= $82.74

I’m pinching pennies for a while (I have a huge trip of a lifetime coming up soon) so reading has to come cheaper for the next year.

Here are 7 ways to get some good inexpensive reads this summer:
  •  Only Indie every new book starts at $0. The first 15 downloads are free and every download after that is a penny more, up to a maximum of $7.98, a number chosen by the site’s founders in response to what they see as too-high e-book prices at other retailers. If a book isn’t downloaded for 24 hours, its price begins to slowly drop per an algorithm designed to take 100 days to bring the price back to $0.
  • Shakespeare series for students and general readers alike. 
  • e-Libro announced more than 48,000 Spanish-language e-books are available on millions of smart phones, tablets, and other devices using ebrary’s dedicated iOS and Android™ apps with Spanish language interfaces. They digitize more than 800 titles every month. 
  • Amazon’s Kindle Top 100-Best Sellers. There are loads of e-books under $9. If you haven’t gotten around to reading Hunger Games and trilogy they’re $5. Many more well reviewed (4 star+ with 50+ reviews) e-books at $2.99. OrAmazon’s Top 100 Free e-books.  I found 3 pretty interesting books on the list.
  • Good Reads has a recommendations site that has some great looking books.
  • Free sites  such as 
  • Used books: Almost every independently owned bookstore has a shelf or more of gently read used books. For not so gently read try the thrift stores.
 I know I did not list going to the library or swapping books with friends (both good choices, but each have their downsides) as these are given ways to reduce costs. 

There may be more sites out there to get quality reads, so if you know any, please contribute your finds to the list. Maybe we can get to “10 Ways…”

Oh wait,  I didn’t list my favorite way to find good inexpensive reads:

Clean out the bookself and re-read a favorite or find the one you missed. 

Happy reading!

Amada Irma Perez, Americas Award Books, Books, Summer reads for children

Summer Reads for Children

Studies show that children who read four or more books over the summer fare better on reading-
comprehension tests in the fall than their peers who read one or no books.

Here are some Américas Award book recipients, given in recognition of U.S. works of fiction or poetry published in English or Spanish that authentically portray Latin America, the Caribbean, or Latinos in the United States. The National Consortium of Latin American Studies Programs (CLASP) sponsors the award. These recipients rated excellent in: 1) distinctive literary quality; 2) cultural contextualization; 3) exceptional integration of text, illustration and design; and 4) potential for classroom use.

Clemente! by Willie Perdomo, 2010. This is a tribute to a man considered by many to be one of the finest baseball players ever–Roberto Clemente. A little boy who is the son of the president of “The Greatest Fans of Roberto Clemente Club, Boogie-down Bronx chapter,” tells the book in the first person. The story illustrates how this outstanding athlete lived his life amidst discrimination and troubles. His life had a tragic ending when the plane he was on, bound for Nicaraguan earthquake victims, crashed and disappeared.

 The Dreamer by Pam Muñoz Ryan. Inspired by the life of Chilean poet, Pablo Neruda, the book’s prose is dream-like and lyrical. This is a wonderful introduction to the early life and work of Neruda. The main character, Neftali Reyes (Neruda’s real name), is a lonely boy with a stuttering problem. He is a child who experiences the world differently than most, and who is criticized by his domineering father for “foolishness.” Though written for children, it is a story readers of all ages will find engaging.

 My Diary from Here to There by Amada Irma Perez, Illustrated by Maya Christina Gonzales, Children’s Book Press, 2009. This Ventura County author also wrote “My Very Own Room,” a Tomas Rivera Award winner and Américas Honor Award and “Nana’s Big Surprise.” 

“My Diary from Here to There” is inspired by the author’s childhood and explores her feelings as she leaves Juarez, Mexico for Los Angeles. Her five brothers are excited but she has some concerns, which she keeps to herself in her journal. Her father tells her, “You are stronger than you think,” but Amada isn’t so sure. In this emotional journey, she discovers her strength, as well as a way to keep friends and relatives back in Mexico “in my memories and in my heart.” Any child who has moved and left a best friend or neighborhood can relate to this story. The book is beautifully illustrated and is bilingual.

You can find other award winning books at your local library. Better yet, take your child for an afternoon of browsing through the shelves of your favorite bookstore or the library. Make it enjoyable and make it a summer of reading.