The latest edition to my digital arsenal, if you can even call this ‘digital’, is Amazon’s Kindle after six months at Slimming World…
I resisted getting one of these things for months, and for good reason. I love books – despite an early love/hate relationship due to idiot ‘educators’ assuming poor spelling ability = poor reading ability. Their smell, the feel of the pages, the creak of a fresh unopened spine. Even the process of searching, selecting, and buying a book gets my geeky juices flowing. Normally, I’d even chose paying a little bit more in a local book shop – read: international chain of book stores – than order one via the internet.Then something changed– And I don’t bloody-well know what it was!
The clincher was Currys‘ offer of a free Logik case with every purchase of a Kindle. Looking back at it, I think I may have fallen prey to one of their cunning advertising tricks – these include such doozies as “Free Wi-Fi with every iPhone 4s.
Tales of the mildly unrelated aside, onto the main feature!
First impressions of the teen-eReader, are that it is much smaller, and lighter, than a book. I know I may be stating the obvious, but it’s true! Ever noticed how difficult it is to hold a large book for extended periods of time? It’s generally uncomfortable and you spend more time rearranging yourself and wrestling with the spine than you do comfortably reading. With this min-eReader you don’t have any of these issues. The only problems I’ve had are with it’s innate ability to attract dust, crumbs, and general bits of fluff. The accompanying black Logik case is rather cute, if somewhat poorly constructed for its regular retail price. I’m starting to suspect that its soft interior is partly responsible for the fluff situation.
After using the pigm-eReader – I’m running out of these already – for just over a month now, I must say that I’m more than converted on the whole digital reading thing. It’s made literature, classical especially, very accessible to me. Though they’re made to be harder to find than I can think to be accidental, many of the classics are in the public domain and therefore free of charge. I’m currently reading The Phantom of The Opera. There are also regular discounts on books still in regular publishing; the most notable being The Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy: a trilogy in five parts, which was recently sold for a fraction of the RRP price to celebrate Douglas Adams‘ 60th Birthday.
While I still prefer books, the Kindle has opened a whole new world of reading opportunities for me. I’m now able to access any classic I want and I may sample books I’m not sure about without a shop-assistant glaring angrily at me and grumbling something about “this not being a library.” And, though I may be judged for this, I’m able to pay less for books that I think are either over-priced or badly bound – since the dawn of the eReader I have seen a dramatic decrease in the quality of books kept on the shelves of shops.How hard is it not to mangle a book you’ve yet to pay for!?
I am not suffering from buyers remorse in the slightest. Anything that convinces me that I’m more educated than I actually am is well worth the money. The only down side I have found is that eBooks are subject to VAT, unlike the printed word.
If you’re considering purchasing an itsy-bitsy-teeny-weeny-yellow-polkadot-eReady for yourself, I do recommend it. But get a waterproof case. And be sure to pay for any insurance offered. Those black-magic fueled digital-ink screens can be fragile.