Saturday, April 26, 2014: Today’s Kindle Daily Deals listings with excellent Whispersync for Voice deals include recently-announced John W. Campbell for Best New Writer nominee Wesley Chu’s The Lives of Tao and The Deaths of Tao, along with a huge list of “book club” fiction mostly from 2012 and 2013 in a special Gold Box Deal of the Day: Book Club Favorites call-out, including “genre in the mainstream” novels The Curiosity, The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope, and The Stockholm Octavo, along with some mainstream fiction I’ve been considering for a bit, including Flight Behavior and The Orchardist.
First up, Wesley Chu’s The Lives of Tao, on sale for $1.99 in Kindle and offering a $0.99 Whispersync for Voice upgrade to the Audible edition, read by Michael Naramore for Angry Robot on Brilliance Audio. “When out-of-shape IT technician Roen wakes up and starts hearing voices in his head, he naturally assumes he’s losing it. He isn’t. As of last night, he has a passenger in his brain – an ancient alien life-form called Tao, whose race crash-landed on Earth before the first fish crawled out of the oceans. Over the millennia his people have trained human heroes to be great leaders, to advance our species at a rate far beyond what it would have achieved on its own. Split into two opposing factions – the peace-loving, but under-represented Prophus, and the savage, powerful Genjix – the aliens have been in a state of civil war for centuries.”
And the appropriately-named sequel, The Deaths of Tao, also on sale in Kindle for $1.99 and, thanks to the literally just-released audiobook, offering a $3.47 Whispersync for Voice upgrade to the Audible edition, also read by Naramore. “The sequel to The Lives of Tao. The Prophus and the Gengix are at war. For centuries they have sought a way off-planet, guiding humanity’s social and technological development to the stage where space travel is possible. The end is now in sight, and both factions have plans to leave the Earth, but the Gengix method will mean the destruction of the human race. That’s a price they’re willing to pay. It’s up to Roen and Tao to save the world. Oh, dear…”
Next up, a pair of genre in the mainstream (by this I mean “titles marketed as mainstream fiction but having speculative elements”) titles, starting with Stephen P. Kiernan’s The Curiosity: A Novel. On sale for $1.99 Kindle with a $3.99 Whispersync for Voice upgrade to the Audible edition, read by Kate Udall, Erik Bergmann, and George Guidall for Harper Audio. “Dr. Kate Philo makes a breathtaking discovery in the Arctic: the body of a man buried deep in the ice. Heedless of the potential consequences, Kate’s boss orders that the frozen man be reanimated. As the man begins to regain his memories, the team learns that he was – is – a judge, Jeremiah Rice. Thrown together by fate, Kate and Jeremiah grow closer. But the clock is ticking and Jeremiah’s new life is slipping away. Kate must decide how far she is willing to go to protect the man she has come to love.”
Rhonda Riley’s The Enchanted Life of Adam Hope is also a story of romance and a man out of place, but with an even more different “man” at its center. On sale for $1.99 in Kindle, with a $3.99 Whispersync for Voice upgrade to the Audible edition, read by Stina Nielsen for Harper Audio. “In the waning months of World War II, young Evelyn Roe’s life is transformed when she finds what she takes to be a badly burned soldier, all but completely buried in the heavy red-clay soil on her family’s farm in North Carolina. When Evelyn rescues the stranger, it quickly becomes clear he is not a simple man. As innocent as a newborn, he recovers at an unnatural speed, and then begins to change – first into Evelyn’s mirror image, and then into her complement, a man she comes to know as Adam.”
Two more titles have just a bit more tenuous of a “speculative” element, but enough to warrant a mention here. Karen Engelmann’s The Stockholm Octavo: A Novel takes place in an 18th-century Sweden of intrigue, and is on sale for $1.99 in Kindle with a $1.99 Whispersync for Voice upgrade to the Audible edition, read by the always-masterful Simon Vance for Blackstone Audio. “Life is close to perfect for Emil Larsson, a self-satisfied bureaucrat in the Office of Customs and Excise in 1791 Stockholm. He is a true man of the town – a drinker, card player, and contented bachelor – until one evening when Mrs. Sofia Sparrow, a fortune-teller and proprietress of an exclusive gaming parlor, shares with him a vision she has had: a golden path that will lead him to love and connection. She lays an octavo for him, a spread of eight cards that augur the eight individuals who can help him realize this vision – if he can find them.”
Lastly, Barbara Kingsolver’s Flight Behavior: A Novel takes place in contemporary Appalachia, but with a quasi-mystical event at its center. On sale in Kindle for $1.99, with a $4.99 Whispersync for Voice upgrade to the Audible edition, read by the author for Harper Audio. “Dellarobia Turnbow is a restless farm wife who gave up her own plans when she accidentally became pregnant at 17. Now, after a decade of domestic disharmony on a failing farm, she encounters a shocking sight: a silent, forested valley filled with what looks like a lake of fire. She can only understand it as a cautionary miracle, but it sparks a raft of other explanations from scientists, religious leaders, and the media.”
So! A pretty packed day in terms of Whispersync deals. There’s also a lot more titles of interest to those who also read and listen to mimetic (non-speculative) fiction, including Amanda Coplin’s historical fiction The Orchardist and Ron Rash’s Serena. Enjoy!