(Continued from this previous entry)
It’s been just over a week since I began using my Amazon Kindle.
And already, my life has changed in several ways.
The first ebook I purchased and read on my Kindle was Andrew D. Blechman’s Leisureville. It was a great read – hilarious, mind-boggling, moving and thought-provoking – and a great way to begin my Kindle experience.
And maybe it was partly or wholly because of Leisureville, but as I ploughed my way through it, something that Roosh mentioned in his post about his Kindle once again came to mind – he found that he could now read faster.
I was starting to feel the same way as well.
After I finished Leisureville, I moved on to Blake Crouch’s horror novel Run, my second Kindle purchase. Alas, after a promising start Run soon disappointed me and I stopped reading it (David Moody’s Hater, which Run had reminded me of, is much more grim, intense and startling) – but despite that, it had also felt like I’d been racing through Run.
And it wasn’t only because the Kindle is easier to handle and use than a book – especially where turning pages is now replaced by clicking buttons. I also found that the screen area, which is slightly smaller than a paperback’s page, improved reading focus – less text meant greater concentration.
I eat out most nights, and when I do I often like to read at the same time.
Unfortunately, because I’m very OCD about keeping books in as immaculate condition as possible (especially brand-new ones – and I hate creased spines), sometimes I make a ridiculous ordeal of reading while eating. While one hand is lifting food or drink to my mouth, the other hand is holding a book and trying not to crease the spine, or dent the cover, or bend pages while turning them, or get the book stained if food or drink suddenly splatters, or all of the above, damn it…
With the Kindle, though, I can easily hold it up closer to my face or prop it upright against something, and just press buttons.
Propping it upright has become the preferred method, and although I usually have something else at hand for a prop I’ve been thinking of some sort of stand. There are specific Kindle stands from Amazon, but I’ve also been looking locally for ersatz solutions – and that included my first-ever visit to Sydney’s flagship Apple store, which like IKEA is somehow always crowded with people.
Even Apple accessories aren’t cheap, but even they look pretty good. I may return there.
As I mentioned in my previous post, I was especially amazed at how cheap Amazon ebooks are compared to books sold in local stores.
And almost every day as last week progressed, I was still finding myself amazed.
I haven’t gone on an ebook-buying spree – yet – and I still enjoy visiting local bookstores, but I’ve found that if I mentally noted the price of a new book that looked interesting and later checked for an available ebook edition on Amazon, in most cases I would save up to $20 each time if I bought the ebook.
By the end of the week, I’d developed a new habit when visiting bookstores – whipping out a notepad and writing down lists of titles to later investigate at Amazon and, if they were available Down Under as ebooks, add them to my wish-list.
Which keeps growing. And growing.
I own large paperback copies of two long novels – Jonathan Littell’s controversial historical epic The Kindly Ones and Justin Cronin’s bestselling post-apocalypse saga The Passage.
I haven’t yet read either of them, though, because of their physical size – they’re each about as thick as a telephone book.. I do most of my reading away from home, but either of them would be a bastard to lug around – and at home I do most of my reading lying down in bed, so holding them aloft or while on my side wouldn’t be very enjoyable.
The other night, though, I was looking at my copy of The Kindly Ones where it currently sits within a stack of books, and I realised how I could finally start reading it with much less hassle…
…so, sometime in the near future, The Kindly Ones and The Passage may become my first books to be replaced on the Kindle.
For the past year or so, I had already bought a few ebooks on my PC, and I had also downloaded a few free ebooks here and there – but they had all sat on my PC either little read or not read at all,
The other night, I moved most of these ebooks onto the Kindle, but in PDF they don’t look all that great – so I downloaded Calibre, test-converted one of the PDFs, and was very impressed.
Now I’ll finally be reading those ebooks.
My third purchase for the Kindle was Timothy D. Snyder’s Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin, which cost less than $9.99.
Now that Calibre has opened up more possibilities, I decided to see what ebooks were available locally and how they compared in price so if I couldn’t find them on Amazon, I could perhaps buy local and convert them.
So I moseyed on over to Borders Australia online, and as a test did a search for an ebook edition of Bloodlands.
I was expecting a local ebook to cost a little more than something from Amazon…
…but $24.95 for a PDF?!?
Next weekend, I may be staying in a hotel for two nights.
One thing I like the most about staying at hotels is that while there I do a lot of reading.
And now I can get even more done at much less expense and with much greater ease.
So now I’m hoping even more that I’ll be able to hotel it next weekend.
Until next time, stay well and take care 🙂
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An accessory I have found very useful is the leather book jacket. It’s less comfortable to hold than the device alone, but I have dropped it a few times, especially when commuting/travelling, so I always use the jacket in places where a drop might do the Kindle in.
I bought the following jacket when I got my Kindle – very attractive and sturdy, and the built-in light is very handy indeed: http://tinyurl.com/6lyr8u9