Sunday, March 6, 2011

Succumbing to the Dark Side

If you don’t go with the flow, you’ll get dragged kicking and screaming into the future one way or the other. So, I broke down and asked for a Kindle for Christmas. And, I’m here to report that (I’m so sorry paperbacks!) I love it.

My wife was nice enough to purchase this for me for Christmas, along with a leather carrying case that has a light powered by the Kindle itself. Very handy for reading at night. For purists, it’s important to understand that, although it is a huge leap from uniformly cut crisp paper pages, it is not a flashy button and whistles electronic device. It can do many wonderful things but, first and foremost, it is an easy-to-use portable electronic reading device with a huge library of books and periodicals.

After several months of ownership, I have actually only purchased one book so far…and it was a bit of a stinker too (the book club would agree with me on that). However, it’s not for a lack of wanting books. On the contrary, I’ve been pleasantly surprised to have so many free books available! I’ve read Treasure Island, War of the Worlds, and I’ve even slogged two-thirds of the way through Moby Dick (not really recommended, unless you’d like an in-depth 19th century perspective on whales and whaling). But, that’s the great part…you really don’t have to spend a lot extra to have plenty of books in your library (my wife has downloaded pretty much every Jane Austen book…again, all free).

Anyway, I really have nothing negative to say about the device. I found it amusing that I attempted on several occasions to turn a page after finishing one. Yes, the electronic ink is pretty darn convincing. It’s also easy on the eyes because it isn’t backlit (also good for reading in direct light…no glare). The battery life is phenomenal. I think I’ve only charged mine three times since Christmas, and really only one time was truly necessary. I have the non-3G version, which just means that I need access to a WiFi in order to download new material. So, I just make sure that I’ve got something already downloaded when I take it on the train. The built-in dictionary feature is really great, especially reading some of the classics with their archaic or obsolete words. They also have several other features I haven’t even delved into, such as internet browsing, text-to-speech, and even MP3 listening capability.

If you do choose to get an e-reader, there are several options out there now (Kindle, Nook, Sony E-Reader, just to name the most popular). Make sure you do your homework. I did the research to find the device that would meet my needs and, so far, my decision hasn’t disappointed. Onward and upward. If my paperbacks and hardcovers won’t forgive me, at least the trees will.

1 comment:

  1. I do have one complaint about the Kindle. It doesn't work with eBooks in public libraries. Kindle is not supported at