I love my Kindle, there you go, I’ve said it. I actually think it might be the best thing that I have ever bought. I pretty much take it everywhere with me, and as it syncs to the Kindle app on my phone even if I haven’t got my Kindle I can still read and it knows where I’m up to. Now, it’s not always been like this, a few years ago I was extremely sceptical and wasn’t sure if I wanted one at all. But I have been turned, I have seen the light, I now understand what those e-reader owners before me were going on about and I am embracing it.
My first experience of an e-reader was several years ago when a member of my book group purchased a Sony e-reader. He mainly bought it so that it was easy to enlarge the text to make it easier to read; he also reads a lot and is a bit gadgety. He would take it everywhere and shout to the rooftops about how great it was. I looked at it several times and was not convinced. Over the years more members of book group seemed to get e-readers, all Kindles as it happens, but I do hear that other e-readers are just as good. I tried out a couple of those and liked the feel and look of them, I especially liked the standard Kindle that was released a couple of years ago without the keyboard. I started to see their appeal, the feel of it in the hand was nice, not too heavy. Reading on it didn’t seem too different from reading paper too. When the Kindle Touch was released I then knew that this was the e-reader for me. I tried one out, I liked it a lot and went for it.
I am not trying to advertise the Kindle specifically, I think e-readers in general are a good thing. I take on board that there are drawbacks, sharing books on e-readers can be difficult unless you manage to get a free version of the book that can be emailed. There are though some good websites where books are free to download… legally. I also admit that it isn’t the same as reading paper but it’s not far from it. I don’t get eye strain from reading on the Kindle like I know I would from a backlit device. It’s not the same as having the book, in your hand, flicking through the pages. Being able to flick back a couple of pages to check on something you have read is far easier with a paperback or hardback, but I have got used to this.
The advantages of an e-reader are there though, I have a lot of books on my Kindle and I carry them wherever I go. I used to take a book with me to most places, but when you’re reading a hardback novel (because that’s the copy you happen to own) it can be cumbersome. Even reading at home I find easier with the Kindle. I can hold it with one hand and turn the page easily, whilst having a mug of tea in the other hand! It is always lighter than a book, but not too light so it seems flimsy (I think the cover helps with this). I can read it outside in the garden without any problem seeing the screen. I can make notes and highlight passages that I particularly like (this is handy for book group sometimes). I can share parts of books and what I have read on twitter. Passages show up as popular highlights so that I can see what other people like. All in all, it is an enjoyable object to own and I will never look back.
However much I love my Kindle, it will not stop me from buying good, old fashioned books. I have read quite a few paperbacks since purchasing it, I haven’t gotten rid of any of the books from my bookshelf. I still pop into secondhand book shops to see what treasures I may find. And when the new Stephen King novel comes out I will be buying it in hardback so I can admire a lovely new book from my favourite author.
Anyway, that’s enough waffling about that, time to get some reading done!