15 January 2014

I now have a Kindle (and my thoughts on e-books)...

I have a Kindle! (Yay?)

When e-books and e-readers started becoming really popular I dug my heels in. I'm an old-fashioned sort of gal, and I don't like when technology creeps up and snatches something away, something I thought was beautiful without techies having to get their hands on it. I wrote posts about my love for actual, tangible books. I didn't have a hate for them, I just didn't want to convert right away and toss my love for physical pages out the window.

But this Christmas my family surprised me with a Kindle. I was, oddly, extremely excited. I think I downloaded several dozen (free) books on it before Christmas morning had ended. Okay, I was in love with the idea that I could tote around any number of classics in my bag. And then I named my Kindle Aloysius and once you name something you want to keep it, right?

I thought of the pros and cons of having an e-reader before I got the Kindle, so I thought I'd do the same now that I have one.

Pros:

It is nice to have the kindle in my pocket and have any number of books on it. Recently, I started David Copperfeild but my copy weighed a ton. I didn't take it anywhere because it just wouldn't... fit in any of my bags, and I felt like I was taking a brick anywhere. So I read my hard copy at home, and I have a copy on my Kindle to read while I'm out. I think this is a good time to mention I can get a lot of free books for my Kindle, as well. A lot of them are classics, but I know Amazon offers some Kindle books for free if you keep a look out for them.

The Kindle is just fun. It's easy to take out, go straight to a book, move to another book you have downloaded, and of course there are the apps. (I downloaded the Goodreads app RIGHTaway.) Plus, for those of you who are super creative otherwise, like I am with writing, it's great to keep your ideas organized.

But the Kindle will never replace the real books...

Cons:

It's a device. It runs out of power, the screen gets smudgy, there's glare, etc... It's not a book. I don't like the way it feels in my hands, at all, and if I can't get the book for free I just don't want to buy it as an ebook. I don't like purchasing something I can't just hold in my hands, something that is floating in some suspicious "cloud."

I find it easier to actually buy books and not ebooks. I just love the way they feel in my hands. Honestly, when I think about it, the only good thing about the kindle is that I've gotten enough free books that, in a way, it's paid for itself. But I never had to charge books, my books never alerted me with obnoxious alerts, and I wasn't attacked with Candy Crush Crap. It's like reading on a damn phone, it's pretty impossible to block out the world. And then there are the little things I miss about books. I'm more afraid of dropping my Kindle in the water if I want to read in the tub.

Kindles are kind of high maintenance. They're not romantic in the idea books are at all. Really, I treat it like a tablet, not an e-reader.

This weekend I went to the bookstore to spend a gift card. While there, I saw tons of people just loading up on books. And no line at the Nook desk. I was so happy. I felt that, despite having e-readers, we were still going to buy real books.

And books just smell awesome...

3 comments:

  1. I'll be honest, when I saw that you had gotten a Kindle, my heart sank a little. But, I'm impressed by your balanced (well, perhaps a little book-biased) view of the device as a whole. It wasn't Kindle Love, but at the same time, you weren't trying to burn it at the stake. It was refreshing to find someone who wasn't passionately at either extreme.

    I have the Kindle app on my computer, but I only use it to download books that I can't get otherwise (like Jonathan L. Howard's "Johannes Cabal" short stories.) I think if I had a Kindle, I'd use it the same way you did. But, I know my family's not going to buy me one--I'm too vocal about how much I don't want it, and I think they'd worry it would be a waste of money.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Becca,
    Nice review, I have to agree with you on 90% of you review . Kindle are not romantic, but are much more functional. If you have to travel a lot, a Kindle is just perfect, also I was amazed with battery life.
    What I really miss the smell of books. :(. Nothing like the smell of a new book.

    ReplyDelete
  3. There is a chance you're eligible to receive a $1,000 Amazon Gift Card.

    ReplyDelete

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