10 Best Books on Amazon Kindle Unlimited: Fiction

Back in July Amazon opened up its Kindle Unlimited subscription service to the U.S., throwing their hat in the ring to be the “Netflix of books.” For just $9.99 a month, users can access over 700,000 e-books on their Kindle e-readers, through the Kindle app for iOS, Android, Windows Phone or Blackberry, or on their desktop.

Having access to this library is a boon for bookworms—that is, if they can figure out what to read. With so many titles to choose from and, frankly, quite a few duds, the choices can be a bit overwhelming. We’ve dug through their fiction selection to find the best books on Kindle Unlimited for you to download.

71qsXVeH9oL._SL1500_The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers (1940)
Often named one of the best novels of the 20th century, McCullers’ modern classic debuted when she was just 23. The story follows a deaf man named John Singer and the friends he makes in a small Georgia town in the 1930s. Singer’s life changes when he is separated from his mute companion and meets heroine Mick Kelly, a tomboy who loves music.

Up the Down Staircase by Bel Kaufman (1965)
This novel is the original “young idealistic teacher fights bureaucracy and small budgets in an inner-city school” tale, but it’s told through inter-office memos, students’ notes, suggestion box ideas, and lesson plans. After spending 64 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list when it debuted, it was adapted into a film in 1967, becoming an instant classic.

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Win Two Tickets To Philly Mag Shops! (CONTEST CLOSED)


Looking for something to do this weekend? I’ve got your plans, and they include champagne, cocktails, freebie beauty treatments, and insane shopping. It’s called Philly Mag Shops, and it goes down this Sunday, October 5th, from 12pm to 3pm.

Think of it as the ultimate shopping mall—all of Philly’s best boutiques, all gathered in one spot, and all selling their latest clothing, accessories, jewelry, and gift-y goods at ridiculously discounted prices, for one day only.

Interested? Of course you are.

The Details: 

  • Sunday, October 5th, from 12-3pm, at Crane Arts, Philadelphia
  • Over 30 of Philly’s top boutiques and local designers
  • 40% off ALL boutique clothing
  • 30% ALL accessories (think: belts, bags, shoes, scarves, home goods)
  • 25% ALL jewelry (we’ve got TownHome, Concrete Polish, John Wind, Menagerie and Bario Neal coming!)
  • Food, cocktails, and all the freebie beauty treatments you could want (including nail art and a braid bar!)

Tickets are $25 ($35 at the door), and then it’s all the shopping you could ask for! Even better, we’re giving you a shot to win two free tickets. To win, be the first to email Josh Middleton, at jmiddleton@phillymag.com, with the subject line “I want to go Philly Mag Shops-ing!”

Don’t want to test your luck? Get tickets here, and I can’t wait to see you there!

DO THIS: Questlove Playing This Weekend at UNIQLO Philly Love Fest

Questlove001The Roots drummer Questlove is spinning a set in town this weekend at the free UNIQLO Philly Love Fest on Saturday, October 4th, from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m.

The festival, taking place at Smith Memorial Park Playground and Playhouse (3500 Reservoir Drive) is a welcoming celebration of sorts for the new UNIQLO store opening in Rittenhouse at 1608 Chestnut Street on October 3rd. The afternoon will feature all kinds of activities, like runway shows, carnival games, food trucks and a variety of kid-friendly shenanigans. But our eyes are on the closing affair:

Questlove will end the party with a free set from 4:15 p.m. to 5:45 p.m.

More information can be found here.

16 Workshops and Classes Worth Trying This Fall in Philly


Everyone has that one thing they’ve always wanted to try: painting, singing, cooking … taxidermy. So, what stops us? Well, learning a new skill takes a lot of time and effort, as well as money and a bit of courage. (Ok, a lot). Philly is full of exciting classes and workshops to help you scratch that creative itch you’ve always had. The list of fun and funky options below is just the tip of the iceberg. Go forth and explore!


Knife Skills ClinicClean Your Plate featuring Christina Dimacali
Tuesday, October 21st | 6-8:45 p.m.
$55 per person
This quickie class will teach you the basics of wielding that unruly chef’s knife sitting unused in your butcher’s block.

American Craft BrewsPhilly Beer School
Thursday, November 6th  | 7-9 p.m.
$47.98 per person
Get to know the differences between East Coast & West Coast American styles featuring some of the country’s best brews.

Couples Taste of ThaiClean Your Plate featuring Christina Dimacali
Wednesday, October 22nd | 6-8:45 p.m.
$190 per couple
Dinner for two? You got it. Learn all about Thai food and Southeast Asian influences with this four-course extravaganza.

Date NightThe Clay Studio
Friday, October 17th | 7-9:00 p.m.
$35 per person
Pretend you’re in Ghost as you throw on a potter’s wheel and then relax with light snacks, beer, and wine.  Romantic, no?

Aerial Yoga FoundationsKaya Aerial Yoga Philadelphia
Monday-Sunday, View Full Schedule 
$20 per class, $95 for 5 classes
Hot yoga is so over. Try it in a silk hammock instead. Bonus: Take 5 classes and you’re ready to explore more aerial techniques.

Adult TumblingPhilly InMovement
Thursdays, 6:30-8:30 p.m.
$15 per class, $50 for 4 classes
Get flexible! Beginners can learn back handsprings and more while experienced gymnasts can explore their skills.


Crafting for AdultsPhilly Art Center
Tuesdays, November 4th to December 16th | 6:30-8:30 p.m.
$195 per person
Over seven weeks, this course explores different techniques and mediums, perfect for creative types who can’t pick a favorite craft.

Introductory SewingMADE
Saturdays, November 1st to December 5th  | 10 a.m.-1 p.m.
$425 per person
This six-session course is no joke. It may seem a bit pricey, but you’ll leave feeling crazy comfortable behind a sewing machine.

Introduction to ImprovComedy Sportz Philly
Mondays, November 17th to January 12th | 7-9 p.m.
$225 per person
Explore spontaneity and storytelling in this eight-lesson course. You’ll graduate with a quick wit and a fine-tuned funny bone.

The Ultimate Beer & Brewing Course - Philly Beer School
Saturdays, October 11th to November 29th  | 4:30-6:30 p.m.
$550 per person
Over eight weeks of classes, you’ll learn the science and art behind creating your favorite beer, and brew your own batch.

Comedy IntensiveHelium’s Philadelphia Comedy Academy
By appointment
$400 per person
Receive one class, a performance at Helium’s open mic, a private consultation, and a “graduation” performance in this intense one-week package.


Private Dance LessonsAcademy of Social Dance
By appointment
Prices vary
Learn to salsa, cha-cha, swing, waltz, or tango to your heart’s content. Academy of Social Dance even offers free introductory lessons.

All-Ages Music LessonsPhilly Music Lessons
By appointment
$50 per hour, in-studio
Want to learn guitar? Piano? Ukulele? Pick from a variety of teachers and instruments and annoy all your neighbors while you practice.

Private Voice LessonsCory O’Neill Walker Voice Studio
By appointment
$40 per one-hour class
Have an inner Beyoncé wanting to claw her way out? Let Cory O’Neill Walker set her free. The opera-trained, instinctive vocal coach offers lessons from the privacy of his home, concentrating on technique, breath, and overall fierceness.

Private Cooking LessonsPhilly Cooking Lessons
By appointment
1-4 students: $200 for a 3-4 hour session
Create your own menu and learn to cook the dishes you’ve always wanted to make from two of the city’s finest chefs.

DJ Lessons for BeginnersAhh Fresh
By appointment
$300 per person
Let DJ Bizz teach you the ropes to being a club DJ in one three-week course. You’ll learn about equipment, music, and song selection.

9 Things To Do In Philly This Week: Make Beer at the Art Museum, Chinatown Night Market, Skate Level at Paine’s Park, and More

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PHOTOS: The Disco Biscuits and Giorgio Mordorer at City Bisco 2014

“We’re the Disco Biscuits. We came all the way from a couple blocks away.” That was the opening statement from tDB bassist Marc Brownstein at Saturday’s finale set, in a playfully poignant reflection on the jam pioneers’ near 20-year journey from house shows on Penn’s campus, to the headlining stage at the Mann Center.

Brownstein’s greeting would prove an apt encapsulation of the nostalgic attitude that drove all three nights of City Bisco 2014.

These days, the Biscuits may spend the bulk of their touring year highlighting festivals and concert runs in Denver, Chicago or New York. But remarks like Browstein’s reveal they haven’t forgotten where they came from, nor their very first gigs in University City bars and smaller venues across Philly.

Opening night kicked off with something of a pretty unabashed #ThrowbackThursday. The Biscuits started the weekend with a sold-out show at the comparatively modest Trocadero, exactly 14 years and two months from their last appearance at the venue.

If this alone weren’t enough of a nostalgia trip for seasoned followers, the night’s setlist bore a hardly subtle resemblance of Biscuits all-time most fan-beloved shows (a noteworthy superlative for a touring-centric band that’s played 30 to 100-plus yearly gigs over their 19-year tenure). The flashback to this fan-favorite moment (also held at the Troc, once upon a time) felt like a clear love note to the loyals who’ve listened from the beginning.

Friday kept the energy and the memory-friendly attitude up. Sharing the stage with American Babies, a Philly project helmed by longtime jamtronica cohort and frequent Biscuits collaborator, Tommy Hamilton, the band hit the Electric Factory for a night that kept the party going strong.

Everything culminated on Saturday at the Mann Center, with a 6-hour evening that featured two openers, three full Biscuits sets and a very special guest in legendary Italian producer Giorgio Mordorer. The proclaimed “Godfather of Disco” boasted an hour-long DJ set, featuring retro, nostalgia-happy house mixes of a host of his iconic throwback hits (including Blondie’s “Call Me,” Donna Summer’s “Hot Stuff” and what the hell, the Neverending Story theme too).

At the end of the night, Brownstein might have signed off by saying that this year’s Biscuits New Year’s Run concert series would split between Chicago and NYC, skipping over Philly for the fourth year. But if the past three years are any indication, Philly might always have a homecoming party to anticipate each summer’s end in City Bisco. That’s something to remember.

PHOTOS: Aziz Ansari Pans the Digital Age, Reads Audience Texts at the Wells Fargo Center Friday Night

Friday night, Aziz Ansari’s “Aziz Ansari Live” tour made a stop at the Wells Fargo Center. And after opener Hannibal Buress warmed up the crowd with more than a couple quips on Philly (yeah we know, man, South Philly parks in the middle of Broad Street, don’t worry about it) the Comedy Bad Boy (aka Comedy Heartthrob) was geared up to take on his LED-drenched stage.

Ansari’s most recent special, “Buried Alive”—shot in town last year at the Kimmel’s Merriam Theater—marked a pivotal moment in the comedian’s voice.

His once scattered, hyperactive observational comedy gave way to a more reflective approach, exploring the anxieties felt toward a looming adulthood—anxieties shared by pretty much any and everyone on the back end of their 20s.

“This new special, I hope, goes even deeper,” Ansari said in a Ticket interview last Wednesday. “I hit topics I never would have had the skill to handle a few years ago.”

Where “Buried Alive” dealt with the acknowledgement of, and subsequent distress that accompanies accepting one’s adult life, “Aziz Ansari  Live” explores the concepts with a higher sense of criticism, focus and confidence.

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13 Things To Do In Philly This Weekend: Free Museum Day, Pearl Street Block Party, Hard Cider Festival at the Navy Yard and More

Story Lines We Won’t See On How to Get Away With Murder Now that the Show Ditched Philly to Film on the West Coast


Watching the debut of super-producer Shonda Rhimes’ new show, How to Get Away with Murder, was a little like spotting one of your exes strutting around in a T-shirt you lent them and never got back. The new legal thriller, created by former Scandal and Grey’s Anatomy writer Pete Nowalk, shot its pilot here this past March. It was later picked up by Rhimes-obsessed ABC — a victory punctuated by the entire operation moving to the West Coast.

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