Now, this is not meant to be a review of the Kindle Touch. I’m not qualified to write anything like that and I’m not even going to try. So this post won’t really be a review, it’ll just be me raving about the Kindle. Because it is fantastic.
I won’t lie, I still miss books sometimes. I miss the feel of turning a page, the weight of a book in my hands. But the convenience and portability of a Kindle cannot be denied. The Kindle Touch, in particular, is small, so much smaller than I or anyone expected it to be. Everyone I’ve shown my Kindle to were surprised at how small it was. At 6.8 in. x 4.5 in. (according to Amazon), it’s small enough that I can hold and operate it with one hand.
I was worried about the touch screen being problematic, I haven’t had any problems so far. Sure, I accidentally turn the page forward instead of back sometimes (the first third of the screen on the left side is to turn it back, the remaining 2/3 is to go forward), but I think that’s more my fault than Amazon’s. I also end up missing the first or last few words of a passage I want to highlight (a feature I love, by the way, because I could never bear to write on the pages of my books) but again, that’s more my fault for not checking what’s actually highlighted than Amazon’s.
And it’s so damn easy to use. Really. I think within 10 minutes of ripping it out of its packaging, I was already connected to the Kindle store and downloading books. And I am no techie by any stretch of the imagination (I actually made a point to read the full user’s guide before reading anything else), so it really was THAT simple.
So, yes, obviously, I am loving my Kindle. I bring it with me almost everywhere. I read it in the car, while waiting in line to pay for something or for friends to arrive and basically any other time I think I have a couple of minutes to read. And I couldn’t have done that with an actual book/s, unless of course I was willing to risk back and shoulder pain and lug my current book in my handbag with me everywhere I went. With my Kindle, I can carry thousands of books with me and read them with even getting eye or wrist strain (I’m looking at you, iPad).
I am now, unabashedly, a Kindle fan and would encourage any avid reader to get one. I don’t know why I was so reluctant about it in the first place. Some people will argue (and I once did) that reading e-books is a betrayal of the written word, that it takes away from the experience of leafing through a book and all the romantic associations that come with it. But isn’t the point of books (paper or electronic), well, reading? I read more often now than I did before my Kindle, and isn’t that the more important thing? I used to not buy and consequently not read certain books for fear of the waste if I ended up not reading the book more than once. And by waste I don’t just mean the money, but also of the paper, the space on my bookshelf. And now, with the Kindle, the latter two constraints no longer exist (unfortunately the budgetary constraint will always be there). I can now buy books I’m not entirely sure I’ll love and not feel any guilt that trees were felled to provide me with a book that may end end up just rotting away in my bookshelf. And that just opens up an entirely new world of reading material for me.
So, yeah. I want to slap my ridiculous old self, the one who used to think that reading from e-books is not “real” reading. God, what a condescending bitch I was. If anything, what I’m doing now with my Kindle, buying and reading books outside my comfort zone and waiting to see where they’ll take me, THAT’s “real” reading, right?