Books And The iPad

I have been enjoying several books because of having my iPad, that I would not have enjoyed were it not so darn easy to get them.

I have read several free books, mostly mysteries, that show up on the free lists from both Barnes and Noble,the Amazon site and the Apple site. Some have been very good and some have been fair, but for $0.00 who can complain.

I recently read The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Universe and learned the answer to the question “What is the meaning of life”. If you have read the book, then you know that the answer is “42”. I have always intended to read that book and just never did. I must admit that I had a hard time getting into it, but now I can put it on “been there and done that” list.

Of course I enjoyed a Clive Cussler book and it seems like I always enjoy them. Must be a guy thing.

Yesterday, I bumped into a Chiriquí Chatter reader and he was telling me about Audible.com where he gets all of his audio books. He made it sound so interesting by describing how listening to a good reader changed the entire experience of the book.

After doing a little research, I signed up for Audible.com. A membership may be canceled at any time and there several books I have wanted to read and with the special pricing, listening will be cheaper than reading. Audible is an Amazon company.

My first selection is the new Mark Twain autobiography.  You can see that the normal club price would be $24.47, but with the introductory offer, I get three books for $7.49 each (one a month). After three months a book will cost $14.95. Like I said before, you can cancel at anytime.

You will also notice on the Mark Twain example, that the reading time is 24 hours and 50 minutes. Some books are shorter times and some are much longer.

To put the book on the iPad, I had to do a little studying. First I had to download the book to my PC. The book comes in three downloads. Then you have to setup iTunes to move it from the PC to the iPad of iPod if that is what you have. A person could just listen to it on the PC, but on the iPad with earphones is a better choice for me.

The size of the downloads is pretty significant in MP3 format. Each of the downloads were over 100 megabytes. That takes a lot more space than a standard readable file.

I am expecting this book to be a great book. As you may or may not know, this is the 100th anniversary of Mark Twain’s death. He worked on the book for the last years he was alive and his request at his death was for it not to be published until after 100 years.

The only think I can imagine that would be better is for the voice reading the autobiography to be that of Mark Twain ( Samuel Clemens) himself. On this rainy day, I will try to listen to at least a couple hours.

9 thoughts on “Books And The iPad

  1. I’ll be moving to Boquete in January and have decided that an iPad is the way to prevent moldy books. My question is: when you buy the iPad in Panama, is it automatically “unlocked” so you can choose your internet provider?

  2. Since I have a wireless and not a 3G model, I never had a concern about that. However, I do not believe that any model is locked.

  3. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT download and read any of the Jack Reacher books by author Lee Child. Unless, of course, you don’t mind having another pesky “habit” to deal with.

  4. I, too, downloaded Twain’s autobiography. I started listening to it yesterday afternoon. I had to speed through the too long introduction to get to the juicy parts. I have to say, though, that I’m not too thrilled with the narration.

    I have a couple of suggestions you might consider. If you like Twain, as I do, his “Life on the Mississippi” is an excellent “read.” Listening to Norman Dietz, the narrator, you can almost imagine that it is Twain himself telling you the story.

    Another book I could recommend is Bryce Courtenay’s “The Potato Factory,” the first in his trilogy about Australia. The reader, Humphrey Bower, is excellent. His ability to give each of the characters their own voice really brings the book to life. I must warn you, though, that “reading” the Potato Factory will almost surely lead you into Tommo and Hawk, the end of which is unsatisfying unless you follow it up with “Solomon’s Song” which answers the questions left unanswered in the second book.

  5. Hi Richard,

    I agree that the intro was LONG! However, I dod find it interesting to learn about all of the behind the scenes efforts to preserve the Twain archives.

    I figure the first three books with the introductory pricing will tell me if audio books are for me.

    Thanks for the recommendations. I have them noted.

  6. Dan…I just got through The Killing Floor, the first of the Jack Reacher books. I’ll probably do more later. If you like death and destruction try Tannenbaum’s Butch Karp series. Haven’t listened to any of them but read them all in print start to finish. What I really liked was that, in chronological order the characters age as the series develops. Butch and his wife-to-be in the first one. Then they marry and have children. First child grows up through the series and last book she’s married, too.

    Stuart Woods’s “Chiefs” is also excellent.

    You can really get hooked on Audible.com.

  7. And when you aren’t reading but still have the iPad in lap, a great addictive game is “Angry Birds.”

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