A page from the second Girl Genius webcomic collection, as displayed on my Fire HD 10.
Speaking of comic books, I was alerted to a great ebook bundle sale that just launched yesterday. For the next three weeks, Bundle of Holding is selling a digital bundle of the comic book turned webcomic Girl Genius by Phil and Kaja Foglio.
If you’ve never heard of Girl Genius, you’re in for a treat. This thrice-weekly steampunk webcomic follows the adventures of young mad scientist Agatha Heterodyne as she makes her way in alternate-history 19th-century Europe. As of January 2021, the comic will reach the 20th anniversary of its original print publication, and it’s been running continuously as a webcomic since February 2005. The entire comic (apart from any bonus content featured in the collected editions) can be read for free from the website—but these digital collections can be a little more convenient than keeping on clicking the “next” button and waiting for the page to load.
$14.95 purchases the first tier of the bundle. This includes ebook volumes of the first three webcomic collections plus a pre-launch “preview” comic, the first three prose novels published via Night Shade (and originally sold via Baen’s Webscriptions store), and a bunch of digital freebies including wallpapers and the like.
The second tier of the bundle requires you to beat a threshold price, which slowly rises as more people bid higher than the average. (At the time I wrote this, it was $31.22, but it rose 7 cents just since I started on this article, so it will be higher by the time you read this. You have to beat that amount by at least a penny to earn the second tier.) It includes ebooks of the fourth through thirteenth comic collections, as well as both collected volumes of Phil Foglio’s Buck Godot comic book. The retail value of the entire collection is over $175, so getting it all for just over $31 is a steal.
(Not included are the fourth prose novel that just released this year, or any of the seven books so far from “The Second Journey of Agatha Heterodyne,” the new story arc that began with the 14th volume of comic collections.)
All digital files are DRM-free, and they will be added to your library at digital RPG vendor DriveThruRPG if you have or create an account, as well as being downloadable in zip format from the Bundle of Holding site. The graphic novel collections are PDFs; the prose ebooks are presented in both MOBI and EPUB formats, suitable for adding to Calibre and syncing to whatever ereader you use.
Since purchasing the collection myself, I’ve loaded the first two volumes onto my Fire HD 10 and have been reading through them (as shown above). It works pretty well; the 10″ screen of the HD 10 isn’t too much smaller than a real comic book page would be, so the text is pretty close to the full size it would be on real paper. (It might look almost as good on a Fire HD 8 or HD 8 Plus, but I suspect that would be an exercise for younger eyes than mine. I just recently found myself making use of the “Very Large” font size on all three of my Fires and liking it.)
And, of course, if your eyes aren’t young either, or you’re using a Fire 7 or a smartphone, you can use the pinch-and-spread zoom functions to make everything bigger. Just try doing that with a paper book! (Though zooming in too closely does reveal that the images in these books are a little compressed, and there are artifacts visible on blow-up.)
Ten percent of revenues (after gateway fees) go to a charity chosen by the Foglios, food bank network Feeding America. So, why not help yourself to some great reading and help a worthy cause at the same time?
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