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I got a Kindle for Christmas . . . Now what do I do?

You fill it up with books, of course!
Here are a few “First of a Series” and “Stand Alone” books from the Mad Geniuses.

Science Fiction:

 

 

Darkship Thieves by Sarah Hoyt

Athena Hera Sinistra never wanted to go to space. Never wanted see the eerie glow of the Powerpods. Never wanted to visit Circum Terra. Never had any interest in finding out the truth about the DarkShips. You always get what you don’t ask for. Which must have been why she woke up in the dark of shipnight, within the greater night of space in her father’s space cruiser, knowing that there was a stranger in her room.

 

Morning Star by Dave Freer

Across the one human colony world, a place technologically regressed to near medieval, possibly the last place humans still survive, a desperate search continues. Scattered across the deserts, tangled jungles, and alien fortresses, lie the core sections of the matter transmitter.

These sections hold the key to vast wealth, power, or… the fulfilment of the colony’s purpose: to help humankind survive the rabidly xenophobic alien Morkth who will tolerate no other intelligent species. The Morkth managed to follow the colony ship, and, despite their mothership being shot down and their queen being killed, they continue their relentless struggle to destroy humankind… and to reconstruct that incredibly valuable matter transmitter. If they succeed, they’ll be able to return to the hive with the location of the colony of vile humans, and have a new world to occupy. If they fail, they’ll destroy the planet.

The search has gone on for centuries, and it is all reaching an end point. The future hangs in the balance.

 

Rats, Bats, and Vats by Dave Freer and Eric Flint

Chip Connolly was a conscripted grunt in trouble. Here he was, stuck behind enemy lines with a bunch of cyber-uplifted rats and bats. Rats with human speech, but with rat values. Rats that knew what was worth fighting for: sex, food and strong drink. True, they were holed up on a ruined wine-farm with enough brandy to swim in. Trouble was, there wasnt much food. And with shrew-metabolism the rats had to eat. He was next on the menu. The bats were no help: they were crazy revolutionaries planning to throw off the yoke of human enslavement with high explosive. As if that wasn’t bad enough, there was the girl they’d rescued.

 

Outcasts and Gods by Pam Uphoff

Wolfgang was a nice kid–until they decided he wasn’t even human.

First they cured the genetic diseases. Then they selected for the best natural traits. Then they made completely artificial genes. As the test children reached puberty, abilities that had always been lost in the random background noise were suddenly obvious. Telepathy, telekinesis.
At first their creators sought to strengthen these traits. Then they began to fear them.
They called them gods, and made them slaves.

Wolfgang Oldham was sixteen when the company laid claim to him. He escaped, and stayed free for three years. When he was arrested, identified and returned to the company, they trained him to be useful. They didn’t realize that they were training him to be dangerous.

 

Vengeance From Ashes by Amanda Green writing as San Schall

First, they took away her command. Then they took away her freedom. But they couldn’t take away her duty and honor. Now they want her back.

Captain Ashlyn Shaw has survived two years in a brutal military prison. Now those who betrayed her are offering the chance for freedom. All she has to do is trust them not to betray her and her people again. If she can do that, and if she can survive the war that looms on the horizon, she can reclaim her life and get the vengeance she’s dreamed of for so long.

But only if she can forget the betrayal and do her duty.

This special edition contains exclusive material (approximately 20,000 words) not available in other editions of the novel.

 

Tanager’s Fledglings by Cedar Sanderson

When the starship’s captain died midway through a run with a cargo of exotic animals, the owner gave first mate Jem one chance, and one choice. The chance: if he successfully runs the trade route solo, he’ll become the new captain. If he fails, he’ll lose the only home he’s ever known.

And the choice? He’s now raising an old earth animal called a basset hound. Between station officials, housebreaking, pirates, and drool, Jem’s got his hands full!

 

Wraithkin by Jason Cordova

One brother must save himself; the other must save the universe.

How far would a man go to potect those he loved? For Gabriel Espinoza, the answer was simple: to the ends of the universe.

How far would a man go to protect the empire he was sworn to uphold? For Andrew Espinoza, the answer was a bit more complicated.

Can either survive long enough to achieve their goal?

 

Take the Star Road by Peter Grant

Nineteen-year-old Steve Maxwell just wants to get his feet on the star road to find a better homeworld. By facing down Lotus Tong thugs, he earns an opportunity to become a spacer apprentice on a merchant spaceship, leaving the corruption and crime of Earth behind. Sure, he needs to prove himself to an older, tight-knit crew, but how bad can it be if he keeps his head down and the decks clean?

He never counted on the interstellar trade routes having their own problems, from local wars to plagues of pirates – and the jade in his luggage is hotter than a neutron star. Steve’s left a world of troubles behind, only to find a galaxy of them ahead…

 

The Chaplain’s War by Brad Torgersen

Harrison Barlow, who like so many young men of wars past, simply wants to serve his people and partake of the grand adventure of military life. Only, Harrison is not a hot pilot, nor a crack shot with a rifle. What good is a Chaplain’s Assistant in the interstellar battles which will decide the fate of all?

 

 

Scaling the Rim by Dorothy Grant

Never underestimate the power of a competent tech.

When Annika Danilova arrived at the edge of the colony’s crater to install a weather station, she knew the mission had been sabotaged from the start. The powers that be sent the wrong people, underequipped, and antagonized their supporting sometimes-allies. The mission was already slated for unmarked graves and an excuse for war…

 

Fantasy:

 

Tom by Dave Freer

Tom is a cat in trouble. The worst possible kind of trouble: he’s been turned into a human. Transformed by an irascible old magician in need of a famulus — a servant and an assistant, Tom is as good at being a servant as a cat ever is. The assistant part is more to Tom’s taste: he rather fancies impressing the girl cats and terrorizing the other toms by transforming himself into a tiger. But the world of magic, a vanished and cursed princess, and a haunted skull, and a demon in the chamber-pot, to say nothing of conspiring wizards and the wickedest witch in the west, all seem to be out to kill Tom. He is a cat coming to terms with being a boy, dealing with all this. He has a raven and a cheese as… sort of allies.
And of course there is the princess.

 

Dragon’s Ring by Dave Freer

Tasmarin is a place of dragons, a plane cut off from all other worlds, where dragons can be dragons and humans can be dinner. It’s a place of islands, forests, mountains and wild oceans, filled with magical denizens. Fionn—the black dragon—calmly tells anyone who will listen that he’s going to destroy the place.

 

 

 

Draw One in the Dark by Sarah Hoyt

Every one of us has the beast inside. But for Kyrie Smith, the beast is no metaphor. Since she was 15, when she first shape-shifted into a savage, black panther, Kyrie has questioned her humanity and moved from town to town, searching for a way to feel human again.

Kyrie’s lonely life changes forever while waitressing at a cheap diner. Investigating screams from the parking lot, Kyrie stumbles upon a blood-spattered dragon crouching over a mangled human corpse.

 

Witchfinder by Sarah Hoyt

In Avalon, where the world runs on magic, the king of Britannia appoints a witchfinder to rescue unfortunates with magical power from lands where magic is a capital crime. Or he did. But after the royal princess was kidnapped from her cradle twenty years ago, all travel to other universes has been forbidden, and the position of witchfinder abolished. Seraphim Ainsling, Duke of Darkwater, son of the last witchfinder, breaks the edict. He can’t simply let people die for lack of rescue. His stubborn compassion will bring him trouble and disgrace, turmoil and danger — and maybe, just maybe, the greatest reward of all.

 

Demi God by Pam Uphoff writing as Zoey Ivers

In a world where prayers are often answered, and saints talk to the Gods . . . men continue to act like men. Power accumulates, attracts and nurtures both good and bad stewards.

This is a time of the bad stewards. A time when the Church has ceased to serve god and congregants, and insists that the congregants serve the Church. A time when the saints are constrained in what they ask the Gods to do. A time when the son of a saint and a god is well advised to keep himself away from the gaze of the powerful.

This is a time when the gods themselves have become corrupted. This is a time when a demi god can save the world—if he manages to first save himself.

 

Sword of Arelion by Amanda S. Green

War is coming. The peace and security of the Ardean Imperium is threatened from within and without. The members of the Order of Arelion are sworn to protect the Imperium and enforce the Codes. But the enemy operates in the shadows, corrupting where it can and killing when that fails.

Fallon Mevarel, knight of the Order of Arelion, carried information vital to prevent civil war from breaking out. Cait was nothing, or so she had been told. She was property, to be used and abused until her owner tired of her. What neither Cait nor Fallon knew was that the gods had plans for her, plans that required Fallon to delay his mission.

 

Baptism By Fire by David E. Pascoe

When a madman and a giant flaming thing attack James Lawrie’s Marine outpost, the medic and an explosively talented sergeant aren’t supposed to save the day. Life becomes no simpler when Petty Officer Lawrie returns home on leave to find federal agents investigating the disappearance of a young woman from his past. A young woman whose body turns up marked with eerily familiar symbols.

 

Mystery:

 

Dipped Stripped and Dead by Sarah Hoyt

A Dyce Dare Mystery

When she was six, Dyce Dare wanted to be a ballerina, but she couldn’t stop tripping over her own feet. Then she wanted to be a lion tamer, but Fluffy, the cat, would not obey her. Which is why at the age of twenty nine she’s dumpster diving, kind of. She’s looking for furniture to keep her refinishing business going, because she would someday like to feed herself and her young son something better than pancakes.

Unfortunately, as has come to be her expectation, things go disastrously wrong. She finds a half melted corpse in a dumpster. This will force her to do what she never wanted to do: solve a crime.
Life is just about to get crazy… er… crazier.

 

Death of a Musketeer by Sarah Hoyt writing as Sarah D’Almeida

When D’Artagnan, Athos, Porthos and Aramis discover the corpse of a beautiful woman who looks like the Queen of France, they vow to see that justice is done. They do not know that their investigation will widen from murder to intrigue to conspiracy, bring them the renewed enmity of Cardinal Richelieu and shake their fate in humanity. Through duels and doubts, they pursue the truth, even when their search brings them to the sphere of King Louis XIII himself and makes them confront secrets best forgotten.

 

Joy Cometh with the Mourning by Dave Freer

Reverend Joy Norton is a timid city girl, and she’s never been the primary priest in any parish. When her bishop sends her out to a remote back-country church, she doubts both her ability and her suitability. Those doubts grow when she hears of the mysterious death of her predecessor. But from the first encounter with her congregation — having her little car rescued from a muddy ditch, she finds herself deeply involved with her parishioners and touched by their qualities and eccentricities. Which makes it worse for her to think that one of the people she’s coming to care for murdered the previous priest…

 

Young Adult:

 

Changeling’s Island by Dave Freer

Tim Ryan can’t shake the feeling that he is different from other teens, and not in a good way. For one thing, he seems to have his own personal poltergeist that causes fires and sets him up to be arrested for shoplifting.

As a result Tim has been sent to live on a rundown farm on a remote island off the coast of Australia with his crazy grandmother, a woman who seems to talk to the local spirits, and who refuses to cushion Tim from facing his difficulties. To make matters worse, Tim is expected to milk cows, chase sheep, and hunt fish with a spear.

But he’s been exiled to an island alive with ancient magic—land magic that Tim can feel in his bones, and sea magic that runs in his blood.

 

The Barton Street Gym by Pam Uphoff writing as Zoey Ivers

In a future where no one needs to sleep, homes are unnecessary. A simple dimensional cubby in a hi-rise gymnasium is all anyone needs. Perhaps the designers ought to have considered the possibility of unintended effects from thousands of multi-dimensional bubbles in close proximity to each other.

Joe and his “bio-model” friend were exploring the pedestrian tunnels under the Barton Street Gym when they found themselves trapping in a strange landscape with a hungry dinosaur.

Alice Brown is used to getting in trouble. But being attacked by a Tyrannosaurus Rex in a strange dimension just a step across a malfunctioning D-door is not her usual sort of trouble.

 

Vulcan’s Kittens by Cedar Sanderson

12-year-old Linnea Vulkane is looking forward to a long, lazy summer on Grandpa Heph’s farm, watching newborn kittens grow up and helping out with chores. That all goes out the window the night Mars, god of war, demands her grandfather abandon her and return to Olympus for the brewing war.

25 Comments
  1. Draven #

    should add pixie noir, i just finished it and really liked it

    December 29, 2017
    • I was trying to keep the list small enough to not scare off new Kindle owners.

      December 29, 2017
  2. But what do I do with my hippopotamus?

    December 29, 2017
    • I recommend the local zoo.

      December 29, 2017
      • Sendarius #

        I took mine to the zoo yesterday.

        Today, I’m taking him to the mall.

        December 30, 2017
        • DaveK #

          Where do you find the cute “Service Animal” jacket for your hippo to wear?

          December 30, 2017
          • Sendarius #

            I had it specially made.
            Now I need to add an extra pocket for the pooper-scooper.

            December 30, 2017
    • Put the books on the Kindle.
      But Not the hippopotamus
      (with apologies to S. Boynton and Hippopotamuses everywhere…)

      December 30, 2017
  3. A great list of books to get.

    December 29, 2017
  4. Too much too read, some again lots of new stuff.

    December 29, 2017
    • It’s a terrible thing, idn’t it, when some of your favorite writers are 1) prolific and 2) control their own back-list? 😉

      December 29, 2017
    • My problem is: SO MANY BOOKS NEVER ENOUGH MONEY XD

      The time, well. That’s in short supply too, of late.

      December 29, 2017
  5. (Sigh) I already own most, if not all, of these.

    December 29, 2017
    • Yeah, this was a list for first time Kindle owners. If you know one, send him or her a link to this list.

      December 29, 2017
  6. sam57l0 #

    I bought Rats, Bats, & Vats in pb. It’s a fun read. Got a Kindle last Christmas; currently working my way thru the complete works of R.E. Howard, and loving it.

    December 29, 2017
  7. What. No John C. Wright? Come on!

    December 30, 2017
    • He doesn’t write for the Mad Genius Club.

      December 30, 2017
  8. Sea Writer #

    If you are looking for older books, check out the following sites:

    Archive – archive,org
    Project Gutenberg – http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page
    Faded Page (Canadian) – http://fadedpage.com/

    The books are all public domain, and a lot of classic stuff is there.

    December 30, 2017
  9. Bill #

    Here’s something I do with my kindle. Whatever your interest, subject or author, do a search at the Kindle store, sort by price, lowest to highest, for subjects or classical authors, the first several pages will bring up books that cost nothing, that are free. I have the collected works of several authors and poets that have cost me nothing.

    December 30, 2017
  10. Richaed #

    Download the Book Bub app!

    December 30, 2017
  11. Tristan Yates #

    This is why web browsers have a bookmark function. Thanks for putting this together!

    December 30, 2017
  12. Great list, read some of them will buy/read more!

    For new kindle owners I’d also recommend checking out Project Gutenberg, public domain books in kindle, and other formats.

    The fact that Jules Verne, Kipling and other authors therein, are not members of the Mad Genius Club, simply reflects the club’s horrid discriminatory, prejudicial exclusion of dead authors! Sigh in today’s world where humor, however lame, is often taken otherwise I better qualify this paragraph with a parenthetical aside: (Hey I was just trying to be funny.) OK? 😉

    Oh and considering the date; Cedar, et al, very best wishes in the coming New Year!!!!

    December 30, 2017
    • Draven #

      Sure they are, we just had to take them off the blogroll because their blogs seem to have gone defunct.

      December 30, 2017
  13. lfox328 #

    There is a neat Chrome Extension – Send to Kindle. I use it for webpages/pdfs that are long, so I can read them offline later.
    Also, download any manuals for car, phone, computer, etc. – having them on Kindle makes it convenient when you’re not near a wireless connection/yours is out.

    December 30, 2017
  14. Mike Houst #

    WARNING
    If you decide to load up Larry Corriea’s, “Monster Hunter International”; you’ll also need to get the 5 or 6 books that come after it.
    I made the sad mistake of getting the first one, and then having to drive back to B&N a couple days later to get the rest.
    Yes, MHI is that addicting.

    December 30, 2017

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