Sunday, December 7, 2008


Reading is a passion a pleasure and an escape. It is one of my favorite pastimes. Biographies, novels, true crime, history, art books--- there is always a stack of books to be read on the bedside table and a list in my wallet of favorite authors and titles that interest me. Garage sales, library sales and second hand book stores are favorite hunting grounds and (a division of EBAY) has also been a great source of reading material.
In June of this year I was gifted with a Kindle. My incredibly indulgent husband and daughter Fred and Melissa came up with the was inspired.
For those of you not familiar with Kindle it is Amazon.coms version of an electronic reader. It is compact, lightweight, convenient and in my opinion the way of the future---and I am not a gadget person.
Kindle gives you access to over 100,000 books as well as newspapers, magazines, and assorted weblogs. They are available almost immediately over Amazon's cellular data network called Whispernet which is included with the purchase price of Kindle without an additional monthly fee. The Whispernet gives you access to Amazon's Kindle store You can search for, shop for and purchase books and as on the website your personal recommendations will be listed.
Kindle is easy to read. The screen is a grey scale display with no back lighting so it reads like print on paper. There are text sizes from tiny to blind as a bat that accommodate your eyesight.
The controls are easy to use. Large buttons to page forward and back and a scroll wheel to access and navigate the menus.
Kindles battery remains charged for 3-4 days, longer if you only turn on the Whispernet connection when you need it. Recharging takes 2 hours.
Kindle allows me to read more than one book at a time and remembers my place in each book. It also allow me to mark quotes and make notes for future reference.
Despite the fact that Kindle is a high tech device it is easy to forget about it when you are reading. Like reading any good print book, when you become immersed in the story the device "disappears."
I have really only discovered one drawback to Kindle. It is difficult to read in a public place. Kindle is a magnet to the curious. Whether on the train, waiting in a doctors office or in the break room at work I find myself answering questions and giving Kindle demos to people not familiar with the device.
A small price to pay for the convenience.

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