Quickie: The Corpse King by Christopher Kellen

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I was pleasantly surprised but this short! I’ve read quite a bit of self-published work lately and this ranks up there with some of the best I’ve read. Of course, it helps that this is Sword & Sorcery…a favorite of mine. 😉

There were a few things that bothered me – the section when D’Arden meets the old man felt a little off and I would have liked a bit more depth in some places.

One of the things I would have liked to have seen given greater explanation was the magic system. I do realize that this short story is prequel to a full trilogy but I feel that each portion needs to be able to stand alone. In this story the magic isn’t explained – it’s taken for granted that the reader had some prior knowledge of the series.

I rather enjoyed it and I’ll go into reading the first book in the trilogy (Elegy) with a lot more excitement.

The one thing I don’t like is the author has signed up for Amazon’s KDP Select Program.

What does it mean to publish exclusively on Kindle?
When you choose KDP Select for a book, you’re committing to make the digital format of that book available exclusively through KDP. During the period of exclusivity, you cannot distribute your book digitally anywhere else, including on your website, blogs, etc. However, you can continue to distribute your book in physical format, or in any format other than digital. See the KDP Select Terms and Conditions for more information.

While I’m sure that being a part of the KDP Select program is great for authors – shoot, I found him cause it was free for a limited amount of time and a friend told me to go grab the free book – it’s a pain in the ass for me as a reader. I don’t own a Kindle. I own a Kobo Touch, a Sony T1, an iPhone and a computer. You would think this was enough, right? I guess not. Amazon’s DRM does not allow me to read purchases on my dedicated reading devices. While I have no problem reading shorts on my iPhone (my only kindle enabled tech) reading full length novels isn’t quite the same thing. SO while I have plans to read this entire series…the fact that I can’t read it in E-Ink right now is going to put a major kink in those plans.

All in all – Recommended!

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10 responses »

    • Great idea! Now how would I get an actual copy of the file? I use calibre but other than that…no experience with Amazon book formats nor how to get the file outside of it downloading directly to my phone.

  1. Connect your iphone or sony T1 to your pc via usb. Find the kindle folder. In there you will find the books. They are listed by the number assigned by Amazon. e.g http://www.amazon.com/Corpse-King-Tales-Eisengoth-ebook/dp/B005MDD0PC . That last number is what you would look for. take out that file, put in on your pc and convert it using calibre. Tada. You’re done. It’s one of the things I myself tell readers because I’ve known a few people with issues getting books they bought on other devices or simply didn’t want to use the kindle app to read and prefer other apps that have tons of better options. Books in KDP select aren’t available in epub format unless the author creates one to pass out to readers.

    • Thanks for the reply! I think you forgot some steps…like the additional programs necessary to actually explore my iPhone, lol. When I plug in my iPhone I only have access to my photos. I spoke to a friend and was told that the phone probably needs to be jail broken AND I need a iPhone explorer program. I can’t just plug in my phone and get access to the file structure. So…even without DRM it is damn near impossible for me to access. 😦

  2. Hi! I’m the author – thanks for the very nice review! =)

    None of my books are DRM’ed on the Kindle store. I chose to go with KDP Select for a single 90-day window because it is a great promotional tool — but if you follow the instructions above from terrycsimpson, you will be able to convert any of my books to the format you want.

    I am firmly against DRM of all kinds, and I absolutely encourage you to convert my books to whatever format you prefer. Calibre is a fantastic program, and I use it all the time.

    Amazon is a great tool for authors, especially independent ones, but their restrictions chafe sometimes.

    Thanks again!

    • You’re welcome!

      Thanks for the lack of DRM as well! Sadly, Terry’s system isn’t the best for us people who are not too tech inclined, lol.

      I agree…Amazon is great for those who are in their system…not so great for the rest of us. *sigh*

      • For your iPhone, it should be as easy as downloading the Kindle app for reading Amazon-only books. For the Sony T1, the steps above should convert it to a DRM-free epub which could then be loaded via Calibre.

        If you’d rather not use the Kindle app on your iPhone, there is a free app called Stanza which can be used to read books as well. Here’s a link for more specific instructions on how to make that work: http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?p=391919 Since Stanza imports the books directly, there’s no need to jailbreak your phone. You will need to use Calibre to convert in this case, but Stanza works pretty well from what I understand.

        Amazon definitely can be a pain, and the tools to get around that can be tricky to figure out. Sadly, with BN doing almost nothing to promote indie authors and Smashwords about the same, more and more people are going to be turning to Amazon.

        I’m a Nook owner myself, and my wife and I are firmly ePub readers, but unless some other company steps up to the plate and starts supporting the indie market, more and more will end up at Amazon. A sad state of affairs, indeed.

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