Kobo Touch takes on the Kindle with free e-books, ad-subsidized pricing

The Kobo Touch e-readers are in it to win it against the popular Amazon Kindle Touch this holiday.

After announcing a $99.99 Kobo Touch with Offers to go head-to-head with the similarly priced and ad-supported Amazon Kindle Touch last week, Kobo is once again showing its competitive streak with the introduction of the Kobo Book Club for its e-reader owners.

Taking a page from Amazon where Kindle owners with Prime membership will be getting one free e-book per month each year, Kobo is matching that offer by giving its e-reader owners a free e-book every month in 2012, as long they join the free Kobo Book Club. No membership fee needed.

Your freebies could include books from the following publishers:

  • e-Reads: A trail-blazing reprinter of out-of-print genre and general fiction and nonfiction by leading authors
  • F+W Publications Inc.: A major source for special interest consumer hobby and enthusiast subject area books
  • Gooseberry Patch: A publisher that offers a rich selection of homestyle, family-friendly cookbooks that are now recognized as national bestsellers
  • Harvard Business Review Press: An idea-driven publisher, HBR Press provides books and digital tools enriched with rigorous insights and best practices to help professionals lead themselves and their organizations more effectively
  • Kensington Publishing Corp.: An independent U.S. publisher of hardcover, trade and mass market paperback books - plus digital books
  • New Word City: Specializing in short-form eBooks on a variety of topics, such as biographies, business, fiction, food, history, sports, and travel

Writers confirmed to participate in the book club include:

  • Blake Crouch
  • J.A. Konrath
  • Shayna Krishnasamy
  • Phyllis Smallman

North American owners of any Kobo touch-based e-readers (Touch with Offers or Kobo eReader Touch Edition) can participate in the Kobo Book Club as long as they set up their devices to receive emails from Kobo no later than March 31, 2012. That way, they can receive a monthly promo-code giving them access to the e-books of the month from Kobo. January's selection will include:

  • Pride and Prejudice - The Wild and Wanton Edition
  • HBR's 10 Must Reads: On Managing People
  • Star Wars Vs. Star Trek

The $99.99 Kobo Touch with Offers is available at Target.com, Best Buy and Buy.com, while the $129.99 ad-free version can be found at Walmart and Best Buy in America.