Chris Anderson’s almost-’Free,’ Kindle price drop and more book news


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The entirety of Chris Anderson’s book ‘Free’ is currently available free on the online service Scribd and at GoogleBooks. The not-quite-practicing-what-it-preaches rub: it’s free to read online, but not to print or to download. What you can get for free: a downloadable 9-page excerpt at Scribd and the complete audiobook (links here). The abridged audiobook is on sale for $7.49, and no, I don’t get the logic of that, either.

In other news, yesterday Amazon dropped the price of its Kindle 2 from $359 to $299. The company has not released sales figures for the device, which has perhaps been overshadowed by its newer, larger brother, the Kindle DX, whose price hasn’t budged from the original $489. The lower price for the Kindle 2 makes it more competitive with the basic Sony eReader, which sells for $279 in navy and silver -- not just beige -- and includes special Michael Connolly and Danielle Steele editions.


And I knew it was coming: Octogenarian Ray Bradbury has more on his summer agenda than the two previously noted benefits. As they’ve done in years past, the Mystery and Imagination Bookshop in Glendale will throw the science fiction icon a party on Aug. 22, his actual birthday. Bradbury, who is turning 89, will be in attendance, and I believe there will be cake. Events get underway at 1 p.m.

-- Carolyn Kellogg