Monday, August 31, 2015

8% Tax will be applied to all Kindle ebooks in Japan


Starting October 1, 2015 an 8% consumption tax will be applied to all Kindle ebooks sold to customers living in Japan.

One-time Adjustment for Existing KDP Titles  Beginning October 1, list prices set for will be tax-inclusive, meaning that the 8% consumption tax will be included in the list price that authors establish. For example, if you set your list price at ¥1250, your new tax-inclusive list price would be ¥1250. Tax will be deducted from this price, and your royalties would be calculated on a resulting price of ¥1157.

Minimum and Maximum List Prices

The minimum and maximum list prices for the 35% and 70% royalty plans will now also be inclusive of tax. Previously the minimum and maximum list price for the 35% royalty plan were ¥99 and ¥20,000 respectively.  The new minimum and maximum list prices for the 35% royalty plan will be ¥99 and ¥20,000 inclusive of tax (or ¥91.67 and ¥18,518.52 exclusive of tax).    Similarly, the minimum and maximum list prices for the 70% royalty were ¥250 and ¥1250.  The new minimum and maximum list prices for the 70% royalty plan will be ¥250 and ¥1250 inclusive of tax (or ¥231.48 and ¥1,157.41 exclusive of tax).

Setting List Prices for

Starting October 1, to make it easier to set customer friendly list prices without having to calculate tax, authors will set list prices for the JP marketplace that include consumption tax. To accommodate this, the KDP pricing grid will be updated to accept tax-inclusive list prices. In the pricing page, authors will also see their suggested price without tax to help them understand how royalties will be calculated. For those authors who set their JP marketplace price automatically from their US list price, we will convert the US list price to local currency and that will be the list price that includes tax.

Rachel Kray’s 10 deserted island books

Ed. Note: This is the 3rd in our series of books we'd take on a deserted island if we could only pick 10. Thanks again to Time Magazine for the idea!


The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

Stories don't get more compelling than this. I plan to read this book once a year and no desert island will stop me!

Just Kids by Patti Smith

A powerful love story that paints a rich picture of the New York City lifestyle and culture in the 60s and 70s. Anyone who has ever loved a punk rock song, a piece of art, or has loved love itself will be captivated by every one of Smith's words.

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

Three words: The Prince's Tale.

Another Roadside Attraction by Tom Robbins

Tom Robbins obviously had lots of fun writing this book and I always have even more fun reading it. Quirky, brilliant, and hilarious – this book is my go-to read when I'm feeling down.

The Stand by Stephen King

If I was stranded on a deserted island, I might finally have time to read this one J

The Weirdness by Jeremy Bushnell

A "hipster" sells his soul to the devil in a last ditch attempt to sell his novel. And there's also werewolves and an evil wizard trying to end the world with a very special lucky cat. Hilarious with brilliant prose, this book in unlike anything else I've ever read.

We Need To Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver

Exceptionally well written and equally disturbing, I would bring this book with me to remind myself that there are worst things than being stuck on a deserted island.

The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

I generally consider this title my all-time favorite book so this was a no brainer. I could also learn from survival and coping tips from the characters.

Running With Scissors by Augusten Burroughs

I love a good memoir and they don't get much better than Augusten Burroughs. I could read his writing all day and would love to do so. This book is my idea of a perfect beach read. Is that weird of me?

Dewey: The Small Town Library Cat Who Touched the World by Vicki Myron

This is my ultimate 'feel-good' read. Also, I'm sure I'd miss my own orange tabby while marooned on an island so this book would certainly make me feel better.

10 Free Kindle eBooks and 90% Off Book Deal for Students

Amazon is running a big sale on Kindle ebooks for students today only, August 31st. The deal takes up to 90% off Kindle ebooks for students, with over 425 titles being offered. I’ve also included a list of 10 highly-rated free Kindle ebooks below. Please note that the Kindle ebooks are free as of August […]

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein: A perfect back to school book club read

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's Library by Chris Grabenstein is a New York Times Bestseller and has received starred reviews from both Booklist ("An ode to libraries and literature that is a worthy successor to the original madman puzzle-master himself, Willy Wonka.") and Kirkus (“Full of puzzles to think about, puns to groan at and references to children's book titles, this solid, tightly plotted read is a winner for readers and game-players alike.”).  It is recommended for ages 8-12, grade levels 3-7 and boasts a mere 336 pages of fun from Yearling Publishers.

This is a story about an eccentric billionaire, Mr. Lemoncello, who decides to donate funds to rebuild the town library.  Mr. Lemoncello made his fortune by creating games and this influences the making of an eclectic library layout.  He decides to award some children a sneak peek at the library before it officially opens.  Reminiscent of Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, we follow the adventures of these children trying to "Escape for Mr. Lemoncello's library".

I recommend this book to book clubs and readers of all ages.  Additionally, there are many ways you can incorporate this book into your fall library programs.

For schools, consider displaying the book prominently in your media center.  Make it your book club's first eRead of the school year. (Don't forget that September 18th is International Read an eBook Day!)  Display the eBook on your monitors in the media center during Open House night.  Create gaming tables and include old favorites like checkers, Candy Land, and Jenga!  Be sure to load your digital library with plenty of fun read-a-likes and gaming books from OverDrive.

OverDrive has curated lists for the books in Mr. Lemoncello's Library and read alikes. Chris Grabenstein even has a scavenger hunt for your library. Simply go to his web site, and follow the clues…er directions. Enjoy the Escape from Lemoncello's Library, have fun with your students and patrons while reading fun books like this one and others like it, and may you all have a successful year.

As Mr. Lemoncello says: "Knowledge not shared remains unknown."


Sheila Henline is a Collection Development Analyst with OverDrive

Toshiba BookLive! e-Book Store is Closing



Toshiba has been operating their own online digital bookstore since 2010 called Bookplace. They initially co-developed it with a company called Blio, but a year later they started a new in-house project called Book Live which was designed to replace Bookplace. The main premise behind the re-brand was to focus on the Japanese market. All good things must come to an end and it looks like Booklive! will be closing its doors on September 30th 2015.

We have official confirmation from Toshiba that they will be transferring all of their customer data and billing information from Booklive! to a company called U-Next.

U-Next is well known for being one of the top anime, movie and music services in Japan and many big companies rely on their content distribution network for gaming consoles and televisions. Recently, they got into selling e-books with a platform that is very much akin to Toshiba Booklive! and it should because the two sides collaborated on the development.


The Book Place for U-Next sells e-books, manga and graphic novels individually, and regularly updates the site with deals and promotions.  One of the new initiatives they recently started was an unlimited magazine subscription service that costs $20.00 US a month.

There hasn’t been any mainstream news coverage over this situation yet, so details are fairly scarce on what type of role Toshiba will be playing with the Book Place for U-Next. Likely, Toshiba is just withdrawing completely from the e-book market and got financially compensated by U-Next for all of the customer data. This is very much akin to what occurred when Sony closed their digital bookstore and worked out an agreement with Kobo for customer data.

Digital Magazine Subscriptions are on the Rise


It might be considered a moot point by now, but digital magazines are experiencing growth while print is on the decline. According to the latest ABC audit, the average circulation of magazines fell on average by 5% in the first half of 2015, while digital circulation rose to 409,414 in the period, up 21% year-on-year.

What is interesting about this latest report is that magazines such as Empire and Men's Health are hampered by both tough competition and also shifting consumer attitudes toward their content from online-first to online-only. That is to say, people are getting entertainment and movie news from websites such as the Hollywood Reporter or IGN on a daily basis and not Empire.

The other major component to the audit has to do with publishers starting to be successful with turning their print titles into premium advertising channels. Cosmo, for example, is still a key magazine brand and alongside its print version, has successful events such as Fash Fest and high profile awards like Ultimate Woman of the Year. The magazine has also started to double down on social media, such as Facebook where clickbait articles on sex are shared millions of times a day. They also have over 1.3 million Twitter followers – all of which are unaudited audience extensions.

Joker: a Raspberry Pi + Python joke machine

Today is a public holiday here in the UK, and Pi Towers is silent and still. Clive’s in a field “with no network (not even mobile),” he specifies, just in case someone were tempted to try and make him do something anyway. By the time this post appears, I’ll be pursuing a couple of kids around the Cambridge Museum of Technology. Liz and Eben have one-upped everyone by going to Scandinavia. So, in keeping with the leisurely, end-of-summer vibe of today, we thought we’d share a project that’s designed to amuse. We hope it’ll cheer up all those of you unlucky enough to live in places where you don’t automatically get to bunk off on the last Monday in August.

Raspython, a new project aiming to offer tutorials and learning resources for the Raspberry Pi community and for new makers and programmers in particular, brings us instructions for making Joker, a Raspberry Pi joke machine.

A fact that ought to be more widely known is that our own Ben Nuttall is founder and chairperson of the Pyjokes Society. He and co-founders Alex Savio, Borja Ayerdi and Oier Etxaniz have written pyjokes, a Python module offering lovingly curated one-liners for programmers, and it’s from this that Joker gets its material. Ben and friends encourage you to improve their collection by submitting the best programming jokes you know that can be expressed in 140 characters or fewer; you can propose them on GitHub via pyjokes’ proposal issue or via pull request.

Joker’s display is an affordable Adafruit 16×2 LCD Pi plate; this comes as a kit needing assembly, which Adafruit’s detailed instructions walk you through gently. With the LCD assembled and mounted, getting Joker up and running is just a matter of installing the pyjokes module, LCD drivers and Joker script, together with a little bit of other set-up to allow your Raspberry Pi to talk to the LCD.

Everything you need is in the tutorial, and it makes for a really great self-contained project. Give it a whirl!

The post Joker: a Raspberry Pi + Python joke machine appeared first on Raspberry Pi.

Nova Scotia Libraries Now Has e-books by Local Authors


Library patrons in the US are fairly spoiled when it comes to local self-published and traditionally published authors having their e-books available. The Library Journal has a program called Self-e and Smashwords also connects everyone up together. Here in Canada, there are less choices for local authors to get their digital titles in the local library. A new initiative by the Nova Scotia Library is hoping to change this paradigm.

The Nova Scotia Provincial Library, Halifax Public Libraries, and the Atlantic Publishers Marketing Association have collaborated to provide greater access to the region's e-Books through a project called Read Local.

Twelve regional publishers are participating in this program and over 600 e-books are currently available. This is the first province-wide agreement of its kind between libraries and locally based publishers.