Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Kindle.


I've really wanted one, but couldn't think of a reason I really, really needed it. But as I've been trying to figure out how I will pack everything I need for three weeks in Italy into one 22" carry-on backpack (yes, it's true), I've been crossing some books off my packing list. And if I only pack four books, two will certainly be finished by the time I land in Milan. That's just not going to work.

So I ordered a Kindle today. It helps that they just lowered the price. (Although at $299, it's still not exactly cheap). Thanks to Amazon Prime, I will have it tomorrow (love that part). I've started stocking up on new Kindle books.The amazing thing is that you can also download a Kindle app for your iPhone, and you can read the books you buy on either your Kindle or your iPhone and each device will remember what page you are on, and you can pick up where you left off on either device. It's SICK. The whole thing is so totally sick I can hardly stand it. I can't wait! Several people at work have a Kindle and they all love it and they all say they read more than ever now that they have a Kindle. I still love the fact that you don't need to connect it to your computer to download new books. It's totally wireless. It's totally bananas, is what it is.

I am so very excited. Now if Amazon can get more books to $7 (most are $9.99), and if they can allow you to add Kindle books to your Amazon wishlist (the best workaround that I have figured out is to just click the "Try It Free" sample button (which sends the first few pages to either your Kindle or your iPhone, if you have downloaded the application) and then you can keep those as a working list of what you might want to buy.

So far I have added On The Road (the scroll edition), The Corrections (I never did read that...), The Tropic of Cancer, Never Let Me Go (REALLY excited to read that one), Housekeeping, and The Day of the Locust.

Blogging is great (both writing one, and reading other blogs.... and trust me, I read a LOT of them...), but my addiction to Google Reader may be rotting my brain. Hopefully a few weeks in the sun with Henry Miller and Kazuo Ishiguro will do my brain some good.

Do you have a Kindle? Are you glad you got it? Regrets? Tips? Complaints?

40 comments:

east side bride said...

I don't know anything about kindles, but boy can I relate to google reader = rotten brain.

Penelope Bianchi said...

kindle. My daughter adores it. It makes so much sense....except for design books!

Your BLOG about art is so great! Love the combinations!

DO NOT MEASURE! MY MOTTO! DEATH IF YOU MEASURE!

DO NOT BE INDECISIVE....AND DO NOT MEASURE!

GOOD THING I DON'T KNOW HOW TO READ THE COMMENTS. I DIDN'T EVEN KNOW I WAS BEING TEASED FOR MY........(whatchacallits!)(aka ellipses)

My fave of all was "what the fuck is an "ellipse"!!! (whatchacllit!) really funny

My daughters also disapprove. Not copying them anymore! HA!! They can fend for themselves and miss all this genius on the blogs!!

IT IS JUST HOW I WRITE. STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS!!

CALL ME THOMAS MANN FOR SHORT! Or just Tom!

XXOO

ps no brain which reads...kindle or book...whatever...rots. Not ever!

Starling said...

I don't have one, but I keep hearing about Kindle editions that are free or $.99 during July, so you may want to see if you can find a list. Even if you end up not liking them, hey, they didn't cost much, right?

Anonymous said...

I downloaded the app for iPhone, but haven't made use of it yet. Howard Dean's newest book is waiting for me. I thought I'd dig in because of the hotness; I was wrong.

I lost my powers of concentration during the Democratic primary and blogs seem to suit my attention span. Penelope makes perfect sense.

Perhaps I need therapy.

Bonniesgirl said...

What about outdoors - like on the beach? What about polarized sunglasses?

Fixer Mamma said...

I'm drooling over the idea, but it's not available to Canadians... stupid copyright/distribution rules.

Anonymous said...

I bought a kindle for the same reason you did. We went to Europe last October, and I didn't want to carry a lot of books. I love it.

The advice: when I went, I couldn't access the "whispernet" (wireless network)in Europe. I know that they are trying to set this up in Europe, but I don't know if It's available yet. Anyway, I burned through all 4 of my downloads in about 10 days and didn't bring the USB cable to hook up to the internet to download books. So either download a lot of books stateside, or bring a USB and go to an internet cafe. Although I'm not sure I'd want my cc info on some random computer anyway....
If you want to take it to a hot tub or pool, or even bath, bring a large ziplock to place it in (sans cover) so if you drop it in the water, it'll have a better chance of survival.
The cover isn't fitted and the kindle can fall out. Place some velcro to the back of the kindle and to the cover to secure it. You can buy nicer covers for it, but after shelling out the money for the kindle, I felt too guilty to buy one.
I can't think of anything else right now. If I do, I'll come back.

Sherri

Alison said...

That sounds awesome!

I'm kind of a grandma when it comes to technology, so this may be a dumb question, but if there's a kindle iphone application, why would an iphone owner need a seperate device? Does it have something to do with battery life?

I should go ask my mom. She's all up on this stuff. She's the one who forced me to use pandora, which i now love.

Decorina said...

Pen is right. Never, ever measure for art. And don't let a man loose to hang art - they inevitably over engineer everything and want to use hollow wall fasteners.

Use Floreat cast brass hangars. They are magic - and what galleries use. Never use those metal twisted flat hangars that the galleries give you - they are garbage.

Kimberly Julie said...

i'm currently reading the scroll edition of On The Road, too... the complete lack of paragraphs makes it rather difficult, but it's pretty good nonetheless.

the quarter rat said...

A friend's mother has one and loves it, but I'm still not sold on the Kindle - I only use Amazon to buy housewares the local stores can't seem to keep in stock.(Why can't they just order extra Votivo Deep Clover for me, for fuck's sake? They know I'm gonna burn through those bastards in a month).

And, um, you might want to wait until you get back to read "Never Let Me Go." Now I've thought about that book and need to get a cookie or a glass of wine to make me feel better. Thanks a lot.

Decorno said...

On "what about the sun" - - they invented a new kind of screen for the Kindle... there is no glare. You can read it in the sun with no problem and no eye strain, which is great.

Re: why not just use the iPhone app. I thought about it, but it would run down my puny iPhone battery way too fast. On the flight to Europe my iPhone would be toast. The Kindle battery is supposed to last for about 5 days on charge (if you're not constantly downloading stuff like subscription blogs, WSJ and new books all the time, anyway). So that's the advantage for me to get the actual device.

Anonymous said...

The Kindle is a dream come true for traveling. There is nothing better than finishing up a book on the beach and being able to not move--and download your next book.

Nothing takes the place of a real book, but the Kindle is the best second place product you could ever have.

DDgirl said...

of course it's cute, but:
- Italy, right now, is filled with light, so you won't be able to read on that outdoor, grare or not glare: you actually cannot even step outside without sunglasses, let alone read on screens!
- In most of the places you'll visit, you'll discover that bookshops sell also books in English

vidalia said...

Love love love books. Havent jumped on the kindle train yet put its slowly sucking me in.
Do you use www.goodreads.com? I love keeping track of what I've read and want to read. If you do use, can you share your ID? so we can see what you've read, want to read and what your reviews are. Thanks Love the blog

The Sale Rack said...

i'm debating...

interestingly, i see a lot of women reading from them on the nyc subway..never men. maybe too feminine looking?

Alison said...

ok. that makes sense. so glad i wasn't totally out to lunch on this one.

Lise said...

I sat next to a guy in first class with one and it was so tiny and nice looking. As a frequent flier it would be nice to not have to leave my books behind. But I'm all about carrying less stuff so I would want a color screen option so that I could merge my google reader reading onto it and truly replace a device for certain trips (my laptop in that case). Let us know how it works out.

Jenny said...

I have one and I love it. But I do spend a ton more money buying books because it is so quick and easy.

birdy said...

Can I offer one suggestion?

Make sure you download at least one or two trashy books before you go. Reading serious material always sounds like a good idea when you're traveling -- you have time, you're already being all cultural and shit. But in my experience, those books can often such too much energy out of you. I remember sobbing my eyes out in a Paris hostel over an Anne Taylor book.

BasilBee said...

My husband bought my Kindle for me because he knew I loved to read. You do find out what kind of reader you are (I like to skim back a few pages--doable on a Kindle but not as easy) and sometimes the page breaks will leave a word or sentenced stranded on the next page. Do download BEFORE you go because I don't think you can (from your Kindle,that is, internet--maybe?) once you are out of the states. Also bring your charger cord as the trip across the Atlantic about drained mine! Totally agree re: light reads--something that you can put down and pick up easily again.

Melissa said...

oh dear god.. if I read On The Road while on vacation I might never return home. Love his writing style.

Kwana said...

I just got the Sony 505 and I'm in LOVE! So far 15 books right in my purse. It's heaven. I even got a bunch for free at the Sony store. I'm also able to put my own files on the Sony which I enjoy too.
I was afraid of my own impulses with Kindle's wireless abilities but that's my own um, twitch. Enjoy! You'll have so much fun.

Anonymous said...

I got a Kindle for the exact same reason and I love it. As others have noted, you cannot get new books from whispernet while you are in Europe, so download extras before you go. Also, I turned the wireless off and my battery lasted for 2 weeks.

hunkate said...

my husband really wants one and is always checking them out online. I'd love to get him one for his upcoming birthday but I'm so scared of newer, better models or sudden great deals I would miss by buying now. When I finally bought a 30G iPod, the 60G became the same price a month later!!

Jules said...

I'm with birdy on stocking up on trash. Buy a good mix so you have something to accommodate each mood as it strikes. I'm normally a serious reader, but holy cow have I been in am embarrassing mood for trash lately. It seems to be waning (thank goodness) but I would have been lost the last month if I had only my usual selection of books from which to read.

Jill said...

Is the kindle heavy?

Anonymous said...

It weighs less than a paperback

Hanako66 said...

for that reason, I think it is a good idea.....I just love books so much and collecting them, so I do not want one for every day.

Anonymous said...

Oh yes, I want one. Badly. Not available over here in Europe :-(.
We have some lame substitute that can't do half of what a Kindle can and costs twice as much. Hmpf.

jean said...

Here's a boring question: can you recharge it on European current? I didn't bring any plug ins over there, but I think you'd need a converter--and those are notorious for trashing stuff. Of course, if it literally lasts 5 days, you'll probably not have to worry about recharging. So much for that boring question!

Bring Barack Obama's autobiography, or something like Tony Horwitz's Confederates in the Attic. It's fun to read something very American in a foreign country.

Decs said...

Well, not a dumb question, really. I will be there for 3 weeks, so I will need to charge up at some point. I haven't figured out my charging gameplan however. I will research, figure out, and let you guys know.

BTW, I got it days ago. It's really fantastic. I love it. I am now reading things I wouldn't have bothered to read before. It makes impulsive reading (even quality stuff) a more likely thing since you can just think of what you want and download it asap. It's brilliant.

Fixer Mamma said...

here is a charging travel tip: i travel with one converter and a short multi-plug extension cord. plug the cord into the converter and charge 3/4 things at a time. also, the combination of convertor/extension cord provides extra protection to your electronics if the current is unstable.

Anonymous said...

fuck you

Jules said...

So jealous! Oh, and congrats! :)

JoAnn said...

Oprah.com. is offering a free download of a book that sounds good to me and has gotten some good reviews: Heroic Measures by Jill Ciment

Free download is ONLY available for 48 hours starting on July 20. Here are the details: http://www.oprah.com/article/omagazine/200907-omag-book-download-heroic-measures

Meg said...

We ended up getting one for free (a present through the husband's work), and although my gadget-loving husband has mostly stolen it for himself (his work, so fair enough), it's pretty cool, and most perfect for exactly what you ordered it for: trips and long flights. The plus is that if you download a book it turns out you hate or aren't in the mood for, you're not high and dry without anything good to read, because (hopefully) you've got several other options downloaded.

I recommend the Flashman series, but don't know if they're available for the kindle, or how reading the footnotes (a surprisingly enjoyable part of the series) goes on the kindle.

Samantha said...

I still like books. And if I leave one on the plane or drop one in the sand, I'm out $15, not $300.
Also, I still like bookstores, which, unlike the "whispernet" they do have in Europe.

Abbey said...

i want one so badly -- i hear it is great with the breastfeeding. Not kidding, since you only really have one hand available to turn pages (yes, motherhood is anything but glamourous) although reading decorno makes me feel glamourous.

JvA said...

Just discovered your blog and staying up way too late reading it!

The best way to add a Kindle title to your Wish List is to use the awesome Universal Wish List feature. Then you can add anything from any website to your Wish List.

--Amazon employee