Top 10 E-Book Comic Book, Crime, and SF/Fantasy Bargains This Week

Top 10 E-Book Comic Book, Crime, and SF/Fantasy Bargains This Week

Cheap Entertainment to Feed Your Tablet

♦ The man known only as “Cheapskate” writes…

I don’t know about you, but I’m what you call “price sensitive.” Or cheap. Every week I buy quite a lot of books for my Kindle, Kindle Fire or other Tablets, taking a somewhat opportunist attitude, focusing on searching Amazon for subjects I’m interested in, across the various price offers/incentives they have. Recently that has included comic books as well as fiction and non-fiction.

There are quite a lot of comic runs I want to read, but don’t particularly want to pay a lot of money for – the entire Infinity Gauntlet/Infinity War runs for example. At the moment Marvel seems to be running a sale about once a month on Amazon for the Kindle editions of various runs, but they also discount titles often anyway, with ranges of regularly discounted books as low as 99p in comcis, fantasy, science fiction, crime fiction etc.

So we thought as a monthly (or more frequent – let us know) feature for Tripwire we’d take a look at what was available. Here’s our first top 10. We have put add to cart buttons for Amazon UK at the bottom of each selection – this takes you directly to Amazon and put it in your basket. As we have no control over Amazon’s prices, check that it’s still the same price, as Amazon can change prices on a daily basis. Will try and do this for Amazon USA in the future, but it’s a little complicated (Amazon aren’t really interested unless you sell a lot of stuff). Here we go:

 

 

Amazing Spider-Man Masterworks Vol. 1 (Marvel Masterworks) by [Lee, Stan]

1: Amazing Spider-Man Masterworks Vol. 1 

This beauty collects Amazing Fantasy #15 and Amazing Spider-Man  #1-10, part of the beginning of the Marvel age of comics, and showing work by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko at their best. It’s an astonishing £1.89 or $2.62 depending on where in the world you are. To put that in context for less than the price of one single new comic you get 11 issues of Spider-Man goodness, and I do mean goodness. Spider-Man fans should notice that volumes 6, 9, 12, 15 are available at very keen prices as low as £2.89 (and the American equivalent). Some of these volumes include work by Gil Kane and other top artists and are well worth having.

 

 

X-Men Epic Collection: Second Genesis (Uncanny X-Men (1963-2011)) by [Claremont, Chris, Wein, Len, Mantlo, Bill]

2: X-Men Epic Collection: Second Genesis

At £2.89 this volume begins the modern age of X-Men collecting Giant-Size X-Men (1975) #1, Uncanny X-Men (1963) #94-110, Marvel Team-Up (1972) #53, 69-70, Annual (1976) #1, Iron Fist (1975) #14-15 and material from FOOM (1973) #10. And with the volume at number three gives you a good start to a definitive modern X-Men collection. Unfortunately, this seems to be only discounted in the UK running to $8.50 in the United States.

 

X-Men: The Dark Phoenix Saga (Uncanny X-Men (1963-2011)) by [Claremont, Chris]

3: X-Men: The Dark Phoenix Saga 

Another UK only bargain, £2.89 gets you the complete Dark  Phoenix saga collecting Uncanny X-Men (1963) #129-137. Now you just need to fill in #111-128…

 

Daredevil Masterworks Vol. 1 (Daredevil (1964-1998)) by [Lee, Stan]

4: Daredevil Masterworks Vol. 1

Another Marvel Masterworks, this time Daredevil. Collects Daredevil (1964) #1-11, starting off with Bill Everett and Joe Orlando, and ending with some of the best art ever seen in Daredevil by the late great Wally Wood. In the UK this is currently £2.39, and others in the Daredevil Masterworks can be found at reasonable prices as well.

 

After The Angels by [Graves, Jack]

5: After the Angels by Jack Graves

Naked plug department: After the Angels is the first book written by Tripwire scribe Jack Graves, and is currently available on a Kindle Countdown Deal. That means that for the next few days it’s available for 99p/$1.37, then it’s available for £1.98/$2.74, and then at the end of the deal, it returns to its original price of £2.99/$3.99. It’s currently got five-star reviews and to quote one of the reviewers it:

builds a deep and fascinating world/mythos that I’d love to see given the graphic novel treatment! Echoes here of Neil Gaiman and China Miéville, and lots of cool bits influenced by ancient and esoteric philosophy and religion. I highly recommend this one!

Got to be worth a try at 99p if you’re a fan of Gaiman or Mieville!

 

 

Date Night on Union Station (EarthCent Ambassador Book 1) by [Foner, E. M.]

6: Date Night on Union Station (EarthCent Ambassador Book 1) by E. M. Foner

Ignore the pretty awful cover – Date Night on Union Station is the first in E M Foner’s Union Station EarthCent Ambassador series, and if you like a little bit of humour with your science-fiction, this is a really enjoyable series. Set on Union Station, a multi-tiered habitat for many races run by a super-intelligent species, this series is occasionally laugh-out-loud funny, but more often brings a wry smile or a grin of recognition. It approaches science-fiction from the sociological rather than technological point of view – although there’s lots of technology involved – and is both engaging and entertaining. This first book is available at 99p in the UK and $1.38 in the US. If you like Terry Pratchett, Douglas Adams et cetera you will probably find this entertaining, even though Foner’s writing style is in no way a pastiche of either author.

 

 

Sherlock Holmes and the Shadwell Shadows (The Cthulhu Casebooks) by [Lovegrove, James]

7: Sherlock Holmes and the Shadwell Shadows (The Cthulhu Casebooks) by James Lovegrove

In Titan Books’ range of Sherlock Holmes novels, those of James Lovegrove already stood out as being well above average. In this series – the Cthulhu Casebooks – Lovegrove posits that Watson’s stories as published in The Strand magazine are cover-ups for Holmes and Watson’s decades-long battle with the Elder Gods and their tools on earth.

This conceit works remarkably well, and the Cthulhu Casebooks are enjoyable reading for anybody who likes both Conan Doyle and Lovecraft. If there is a mistake here, I feel it’s effectively setting this series in the ‘real’ world of Holmes and Watson. I’d have preferred it set in an alternate reality, for the selfish reason that then Lovegrove could have gone on as long as the series would bear it. This is the first book in the series and is available for a very reasonable £3.79 UK/$5.24 US. The second in the series is out now and is of equal quality.

 

Moriarty by [Gardner, John]

8: Moriarty by John Gardner

While on the Sherlock Holmes tip, here is Moriarty – no not the more recent Anthony Horowitz book (which is good in itself) but for 99p/$1.38 the last book in John Gardner’s Moriarty series which started out with The Return of Moriarty (1974) and The Revenge of Moriarty (1975). This book was first published posthumously in 2008. Gardner was an innovator in spy fiction starting with the first in his Boysie Oakes series The Liquidator (1965). He went on to write more James Bond novels than Ian Fleming, as well as novels featuring Derek Torry and Herbie Kruger. This finds Gardner at the height of his powers, it’s only a shame that the earlier two Moriarty novels aren’t available in e-book format.

 

 

Green Arrow Vol. 4: The Kill Machine (The New 52) by [Lemire, Jeff]

9: Green Arrow Vol. 4: The Kill Machine (The New 52) by Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino 

DC comics tried a sale recently, in which I bought a preposterous number of reprints, especially 60s and 70s Batman titles. Sadly, most of their Kindle titles are still (in my view) hideously overpriced. At the lower end of their price range are many of the Green Arrow titles by Jeff Lemire and Andrea Sorrentino. You may remember these were unceremoniously dumped for an appalling reboot of the character by the people involved in the TV show, a shame because they were one of the high points of the New 52 line at DC comics. Anyway, multiple volumes are available at £3.32/$4.59 in Kindle format. Still reasonable if you consider that the volume I’m showing (Green Arrow Vol. 4: The Kill Machine) is 208 pages, unlike Marvel graphic novels which these days struggle to collect four issues of the same comic. Unlike Marvel, the easiest way to find cheap DC trades in Kindle format is to simply go to Kindle books, select comics and graphic novels, select DC as publisher, and then sort from low to high. In Marvel’s case, this doesn’t work because they have what appear to be thousands of single issues of comics on the site.

 

10: Venom Vol. 1: Homecoming by Mike Costa & Gerardo Sandoval

Bargain of the day – as long as you like Venom that is. If you enjoyed Mike Costa and Gerardo Sandoval’s run on Venom then Venom Vol. 1: Homecoming is available at 99p/$1.37, and collects issues 1 to 6 of the 2016 run. This is a nice-looking book of the kind I wouldn’t normally spend money on, but for this price I’m happy to read six issues of alien symbiote ass-kicking fun.

Okay, last issues: if you’re in the market for a tablet the new Kindle Fire HD 8 inch tablet has a very good screen for the money. Currently £79.99 in the UK you lucky US people can get it for $59.99. This might look a little unfair, but it’s on special offer in the US, and has been on special offer in the UK recently – mine cost less than £50. My advice is to hang around until Amazon does a promotion on it whether you are in the US or the UK. Many people worry that you can’t get everything you want on the Kindle, but in my experience (and I’ve had a couple of these tablets now) it’s pretty easy to sideload anything from Google and the Android infrastructure. For those of you using other tablets, simply download the Kindle app from the relevant store. I also have Android and Apple tablets and the Kindle app works flawlessly on all of them. I prefer to read fiction/non-fiction books on my standard Kindle, and I’d recommend Calibre software (https://calibre-ebook.com/) which is free of charge for managing multiple tablets, e-books et cetera. A handy side effect of using Calibre is if you’re paranoid about Amazon going bankrupt at some point and would like to keep local backups, calibre download everything off your tablet for you put it into a sensible database.

If you’d like to let us know what kind of things you like to see in this column by leaving comments below, we’d be pathetically grateful.

Cheapskate

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