Wednesday, November 17, 2010

On the Kindle

Mark got me a Kindle for my birthday, and I love it, just like I knew I would.  I'm sort of a techie geek.  I've been loving my laptop, my DSLR camera, my ipod and my blackberry (although I'm envious of everyone who has the Smartphone now, or whatever those phones are called where you can just swipe your finger across the screen....) for ever.

I love being able to download books and have tons of them right there at my fingertips.  I love the idea of having 3000 books in my purse.

"I've got 3000 books in my purse right now.  How many have you got, wuss?"

Fun, huh?

The thing is.....I don't feel like I have the real books.  I have a great deal of respect for the written word.  I respect that a book written is a book, whether it is on paper or on a harddrive.  But when you think about a book that you've read, that you've picture the cover, don't you?  The colors.  The design.  The art.  The font used for the title and author.  Naturally I remember the characters, the dialogue, the setting, everything else I loved about the story too, but I think recalling the physical book I held in my hands is a big part of that memory.

When I put the latest book I'm reading on the sidebar in this blog, I put the cover art.  You're looking at what I'm looking at every time I pick it up.  If I just put the text of the title there, even if it included a link, it wouldn't be the same.

I've had my Kindle for a week now, and here's what I think so far:

If I want a book, I'll get the book.  The paper copy.  The old-fashioned, traditional version where I can read the author's biography on the back cover and see his or her picture.  The one where I can see the color and design on the cover.  The one where I need a paper bookmark and, if the gods were with me, I found in excellent shape in the clearance section of Half Price Books (unless I really want to support the author and the story, in which case I might pay full price somewhere and get it brand new -- for example, Giving it All Away, the Doris Buffett Story, by Michael Zins).

But if I just want to read the story -- I don't care about the cover art and I don't have any personal interest in supporting the author -- then I'll download the Kindle version.  And this will happen too.  I've already downloaded a bunch of classics I have always been meaning to read; Pride & Prejudice (although I did read some of Pride & Prejudice & Zombies, does that count?) and Uncle Tom's Cabin, to name a couple. 

And I will feel SO hip, reading old classics on my trendy new Kindle.

1 comment:

Rosie said...

I hardly ever buy hardcover books anymore. Before I got a Kindle, I got them from the library. Now, I download the sample from Amazon before I commit to buying the Kindle version. After I buy and read it on the Kindle, if I LOVE it and know I'll want to read it again, I'll buy the hardcover.


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