In Praise of E-readers

Throughout my life, I’ve gone through phases where I read voraciously, and then got away from the habit for whatever reason.  I didn’t need glasses until I was in my 20’s and was in grad school – because of reading 8 hours a day…  and then there was my co-worker who had a friend who worked at Book of the Month Club and could get damaged books at a steep discount.

Well, I’m once again addicted, and this time, I can point to the E-reader as the cause.  There is some precedent.  I was an early Palm/Mindspring geek because I’m kind of anal about organization, and Al Gore had not invented Outlook yet.  But on the internet, sites were cropping up where you could download either free classics, or more current books at really good prices.  The Palm readers were really handy, but you had to deal with the tiny screens.  Otherwise, you could be in a really boring meeting, flip out your Palm, and everyone thought you were working while enjoying Winston Churchill’s History of the English Speaking Peoples.  seriously.

It started again with buying the Kindle 2 for my wife.  Amazon has a library of free to cheap classics, and I downloaded a boatload of books for her ( and me) and we would trade off.169671660

Then, I picked up a Barnes and Noble Nook Glowlight earlier this year, and have been off to the races.  I take it everywhere and find myself powering it up whenever I have a free moment.  And I now have the habit of reading for a half hour or so before falling off to sleep.  It’s really much better than anything on TV.

If there’s a downside, it’s that I have to budget – both my time and my money.  It’s easy to get wrapped up in a good read and put off other activity/chores.  It also gets a little expensive reading current releases, although they are still cheaper than hardbounds. 

The other factor is that the technology/competition brings down the prices quickly as new models are released.  Last I saw, the Kindle was selling for half of what I paid, and the Nook has already come down by $40 now that Amazon has a backlit model.

So this is a bike blog, right?  My point is that my Nook has become an integral part of my bike kit.  If I’m on a longer ride where I know I’ll be stopping halfway just to relax and chill, I toss the reader in the Carradice.  Stopping along the stream for 20 minutes and reading a chapter creates a wonderful interlude.

On the last four overnight outings, the Nook has assumed a spot of equal importance along with the french press.  Necessity – no; comfort – yup.  Nothing beats communing with nature than a good book, and climbing in the tent after dark and reading for an hour or so makes the luxury of quiet time that more delightful.

I’m not riding alot lately for a host of reasons: schedules, weather, house work, firewood, etc…, but the Nook is getting a good workout.

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4 responses to “In Praise of E-readers

  1. Hey George … have you explored getting books on your Nook from the library? I just bought the Nook Glowlight for my Mom for Christmas with that in mind. I’m told that the Nook is really good for library downloading, and it’s free! That could help out your budget … just sayin’.

    Once a librarian, always a librarian. Dee

    • Great to hear from you Dee. I did bookmark some titles through York County, but I wasn’t sure whether they were Nook compatible. Now I know, and will check them out (literally). thx. again.

  2. I still like bringing a book along. I don’t know if I will ever get into the techno reading. Actually I just gave away my Droid phone and reactivated my EnV Touch.

  3. The other aspect that i like about E-readers is the capacity. I have over 40 books in my Nook so far and am using less than 1% of the on-board memory and haven’t touched the extra 2 gig card. So no more books stacked about on shelves in our family room that chances are will never be read again.

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