Joining the dark side.. (Why I finally want an e-reader)

flabbergasted

 

I know. I KNOW. You never thought it would happen. Mainly because I went on this big huge rant 2.5 years ago about how it would never happen. I would never buy an e-reader, or use e-books.

I changed my mind. *shrug*

Because of the rant I mentioned about, this is kind of awkward, and I feel a bit hypocritical. But that rant was written when I found out my beloved Borders was closing (*SOB*), and I was pissed. I still am pissed. A few years before that, the Waldenbooks that I worked at closed. Ten years ago I had three nice chain bookstores to visit in my area – now I’m down to one, Barnes and Noble. (Hopefully, Barnes and Noble will be here to stay for a few more decades. I love going book shopping.) And the closing of big chain bookstores around here hasn’t led to a bunch of new indie bookstores opening. There are just less places to go and buy books. I do still blame all the bookstores closing on e-readers. It’s not really deniable. It’s like saying that Media Play, FYE, and other record/music stores didn’t close because of mp3 music. Of couse they did. People started downloading music instead of buying cd’s. People started downloading books instead of buying paper books.

BUT. I’m over it, I guess. I don’t think I’ll ever switch to mainly e-books, at least not by choice. I love buying books too much. I love having them on my shelves. They make me happy. And I’m not very willing to spend a lot of money on e-books – If I’m going to spend more than $5 or so on a book, it better damn well be tangible. But there are a few reasons why I’ve decided I want an e-reader (a Kindle Paperwhite, I’ve decided), so I guess that’s what this post is.

Bring on the bullets!

  • Reading in bed. Since I’ve switched jobs two months ago, my reading time is a lot more limited, and I’ve been wanting to read in bed more often. But booklights are kind of a pain in the ass, and I tend to fall asleep sometimes (unless the book is super action-y awesome, or I’ve had a lot of caffeine), so that’s not a good option. I’ve had the Kindle app on my phone for a while, with a few novellas on it, but I plug my phone in across the room when I go to sleep, so that’s not a great move either. Reading in bed is the #1 reason I’ve decided I want a Kindle Paperwhite. I want to make use of the little time I have, especially those nights when I want to be in bed, but not asleep yet.
  • Science. Basically, I’ve developed kind of a crush on technology of the last few years. I used to hate touchscreens – now I freaking love my Samsung S4. I read and learned about 3D printing, and it is basically the coolest thing I can think of and I can’t wait to see where that goes. Space, and the idea of sending people to Mars? That’s my JAM. I’ve come to marvel at all the wonderful things technology has made possible, IS making possible, and it’s hypocritical to sneer at e-readers at the same time.
  • Oyster. Sooo this doesn’t really apply if I get a Kindle Paperwhite, because that’s an Amazon-only device. But Oyster is a “Netflix for books” kind of app. You pay $10 a month, and you can read unlimited books. It’s not the newest books, but I’ve scrolled through and their selection is still pretty awesome. And you don’t have to download the books – you can just click, and start reading. If it’s not your thing, then no harm done. Pick something else. I am going to be ALL over this when they come out with an app for Android. It’s just too cool to pass up. And HOPEFULLY there will a really awesome non-dedicated e-reader out eventually that I’ll be able to use Oyster on.
  • Already been using the Kindle app anyways. Not often, because reading on my phone can be a pain and I don’t like to drain my battery a lot. But I am a sucker, and I have been downloading novellas by authors that I like. Mind as well have the actual e-reader so that I can read these when I’m in bed.
  • ARC’s. I rarely accept review request, and almost never request books to review. But some publishers that I like, such as Angry Robot Books, have cool ARC programs. I’m slightly interested in being able to request galleys to books that I really want to read.

There we have it. All my stubbornness, and anger, and book-snobbing towards e-readers, and I’ve finally caved. All it took was a slight change in my reading time, and an ever-growing affection for technology.

cant hide my crazy

 

I’m not sure when I’ll get one, but I’ll let you know how it works out. Who knows, I may end up hating the thing. But I’m willing to finally give it a try.

~Sarah

 

 

Advertisements

51 comments

  1. Welcome to the club! I hope you’ll love it! It does help saving money, and is much more convenient to carry with you 🙂 I can say that mine has changed my reading life for the better, and I wish you the same 🙂

    Like

    1. It will probably not decrease my spending on books much… I’ll only buy the little novellas, or the free/$1.99 sale books if it’s something I want. But I’m okay with the amount I spend on books, it’s worth it 🙂

      Like

  2. To e-read or not to e-read: that IS the question. It’s clearly okay that you’ve changed your mind. Lots of hardcore readers have, and I’m sort of one. I’m not anti-ereader but I’m still pro-book, so I use my ereader when it’s not practical to be reading a book. Sometimes that’s in bed, because I have the Kobo Glo. Mostly, though, it’s when I’m traveling.

    There’s one point I would argue with in your post, however, and that is that it’s not the ebook that has been the demise of the physical book store. It’s amazon and their ability to use books as loss leaders. Ebooks are here to stay, and so, I think, are physical books. but because most reader-consumers care more about the price than WHERE they’re spending their money, indie bookstores AND chain bookstores have lost a lot of ground.

    Disclaimer: I’m an indie bookseller, and sure, I’d prefer thatr readers would shop at an indie store. But I damn sure would rather that readers shop at a physical bookstore, whether it’s an indie or a chain like B&N, than to shop at Amazon. Amazon has eroded the fabric of so many small communities–not just bookstores, but almost every type of small local business–that it sickens and saddens me in equal measure.

    Like

    1. PRO-BOOK, that is a great way to put it. I guess I’m no longer anti-ereader, but I definitely prefer physical books.

      I think it migth be a mix of e-readers and Amazon… I know some people who pretty much stopped buying books when they got an e-reader (and some who still bought regular book, but definitely less because they were getting e-books more often instead). And for Amazon usage, the opposite happened to me. I started using Amazon more AFTER the bookstores in my area closed. I prefer bookstores and always chose them because I got my book immediately, browsing is more fun, and because reader discount programs were good. Since those two bookstores in my area closed, I’ve used Amazon more. There’s no indie stores in my city, and ordering from B&N takes SO long.

      Either way, I think e-books and Amazon are both here to stay – I just hope that physical bookstores, chain and indie alike, can stick around as well. At least until after I’m dead – after that, I guess I don’t care so much :-p

      Like

  3. I actually first bought my ereader BECAUSE Borders was going out of business. I used to work at Borders, and I sort of fell in love with the Kobo. Granted, I didn’t get to compare it to a Kindle or a Nook, but of the readers we sold, the Kobo was by far the best (and about half the price of either other brand at the time). So, when they were going out of business, I took advantage of the crazy closing sales and got one for $40. I didn’t have much use for it at the time, but library e-lending was starting to become more of a thing, plus I’d download the occasional short story tie-in for series that I enjoyed and figured it’d be nice not to have to read those on my phone.

    Fast forward to now, and between the decent-if-not-great selection of ebooks at my library and NetGalley, I use my reader more than ever. Not enough to justify buying a newer model (even if my “next page” button is completely worn down), and I still don’t buy ebooks very often (and never for more than a few dollars). But it’s nice to have the option.

    Like

    1. I think I would’ve grabbed an e-reader for only $40 too! Damn. I’m looking forward to having an e-reader as an option. Not sure how much I’ll use it for the library – I had the Overdrive app on my phone and downloading took SO LONG. Maybe it’s gotten better since then.

      Like

      1. When I use Overdrive to download on my computer, it takes no time at all. (Maybe it’s just the computer has more processing power than a phone? Hopefully a reader would as well.) Then I use Adobe Digital Editions and a USB cord to transfer it to my old-school reader. I’ve heard complaints about both Overdrive and Adobe Digital Editions but I’ve never had any issues with either. Not sure how Overdrive is for the Kindle.

        Like

      2. Now that I think about it, I dont’ know how exactly the Kindle would work with Overdrive… I doubt you can put an Overdrive app on it, so maybe I’d have to download books to my computer and then transfer to it. I don’t know, I guess I’ll figure it out! Lol.

        Like

  4. While I was never completely against e-readers, I was surprised at how much I fell in love with my Kindle (keyboard if you’re curious). As you mention above, ARCs are much more readily available digitally, but I’ve also found that as there are so many offers, etc, I’ve expanding my reading into genres I never thought I would like. I choose the books based on whether they sound appealing, rather than what genre they are, which is something I used to do a lot.

    Anyway, hope you like your new e-reader when you get it. And I love the sound of that ‘Oyster’ thing you mentioned, but unfortunately it’s not available in the UK yet (and like you said, it needs to be Android compatible).

    Like

    1. I always see e-book offers come through via BookPerk, and I know there are a lot of email lists to sign-up for to see the deals going on. I’m curious to see how many I’ll be interested in.

      Have you tried the Kindle Match thing yet? I guess Amazon looks at physical copies you’ve purchased, and allows you to download some of the e-books for only a few dollars. It looks interesting..

      Like

  5. I used to be just like you, swearing up and down that I hated e-readers and that I’d never get one ever. But then last summer before I left for Mexico, I caved and got a Kobo to take with me on my trip. I must say it was quite handy for traveling… but I honestly haven’t used it since. I prefer real books to e-readers any day, and I already have so many hard copies of books that it seems stupid for me to pay for more books just to read on my Kobo. But it’s cool that I can borrow e-books from my library that I can read on my Kobo, so I think I’ll do that in February when I go back to Mexico.

    Like

    1. Using it for travel is a really good idea. I’m hoping we can take some sort of trip this year, so maybe I’ll get to try that out. I don’t really plan to use it a lot, except for reading in bed.

      Like

  6. Times change, opinions change. Go you for admitting it and writing a kickass post about it! I’ve had an ereader since the rise of ereaders, and while I love it, and I eread often, I still have a soft spot for printed books. I think I’ve finally struck a good balance after x number of years.

    Like

  7. I’m with you. It makes me sad to see bookstores going out of business. I LOVE physical books SO much more! But I have a kindle, and it’s nice sometimes. Like reading in bed. Or going on vacation and not having to stuff 5 heavy books in my bag. Or if it’s a book I’m not sure I’ll like, but still want to read, I don’t have to pay as much for it. So, it’s a good thing to have, but still not my #1 choice for reading.

    Like

    1. I think I’m still going to usually carry 2 books with my in my purse. Partly b/c I’ll use physical books a lot more, and partly because I’d worry a bit about carrying a $200 e-reader around and it breaking. I’ve heard not-great things about the Amazon warranties and customer service…

      Like

  8. The reading in bed thing was the one that finally got me, and I have to say, it was totally worth it. (And my husband agrees.) I read most of the first three Song of Ice and Fire books in the middle of the night while feeding/rocking my son during his first year – which should really tell you what a TERRIBLE sleeper he was because those are chunky books. 🙂 But really, it is super convenient to be able to read in the dark, and not worry about disturbing someone else.
    I found that having a library card at a major city (for me, Philly) and drastically expanded the collection of e-books that are available for me to borrow. I think most city libraries will allow you to buy a card to have access to their Overdrive site.
    I will cry and cry the day B&N closes its doors, though, because I do love walking around a bookstore. I hope that the power of children’s books will keep them afloat for a little while longer, as I’ve found ebooks pale in comparison to paper books for reading to kids. (why? I’m not sure, but it definitely feels different.)

    Like

    1. I think that when it comes to books for kids, it’s just not the same when it’s an e-book. Kids like to touch and turn the pages, especially if it’s those kids books with pop-ups or textured pictures. And there’s still a lot of evidence pointing to screens not being good for really young kids anyways.

      I cried with Borders closed. I’ll probably cry if B&N ever closes. I want MORE bookstores!

      Like

  9. I think it’s fine that you changed your mind. I have a Kindle which my BF bought for me almost 3 years ago. Before I got it I never thought I’d want one even though I am a technology junkie and thought they looked cool. But I love physical books and figured I’d never read it. It even sat in the box for quite a while after I got it because I just wasn’t used to it, didn’t really understand how it worked fully, etc. And once I started using it, it took time to get used to it.

    While I still prefer physical books and get most of mine from the library, I still am glad I have a Kindle. It is invaluable for traveling and it’s great for reading in bed too. Mine isn’t backlit but my BF has a Kandle reading light so I just clip that on. It doesn’t illuminate the entire page but it works when I don’t want to disturb him and a regular bedside reading lamp would be too bright. Plus he keeps saying he’s going to buy me a new Kindle and upgrade mine but it still works perfectly fine and I see no reason to spend more money when I hardly use it.

    So, I guess I’m saying that eReaders have their place. I still love books. We are allowed to like eReaders and that doesn’t mean anything bad about us as readers or book lovers. I see eReaders and eBooks as a nice supplement to physical books, bookstores, libraries, etc. Definitely let us know how you like it when you get it! 🙂

    Like

    1. Yeah, I’ve finally accepted that e-readers have their place. And I don’t want to be one of those cantankerous grumpy people about them. They’re here to stay, I should probably at least test it out and use it when it’s convenient for me.

      Like

  10. Can I say that I’m kinda happy you’ve embraced e-reading? Or maybe just giving it a friendly handshake? 🙂 I love my e-reader for all the reasons you mentioned above, and I love that when we go on vacation, I don’t have to haul around 20 pounds of books, but my e-reader and maybe 4 pounds of books (because obviously I still take physical copies with me). And I’m also really excited about the Oyster thing! I hope they’ll get it for Android and/or ereaders soon!

    Like

    1. HA, giving e-readers a friendly handshake is a perfect way to put it!

      I’m pretty sure I’m still going to purposely buy big giant purses suitable for carrying 2 to 5 books in… I’ve gotten use to that, I love it 🙂 Hopefull I’ll like the e-reader, when I get it.

      Like

  11. You won’t regret it! I’ve had a kindle for years now and still read a lot of paper books, in fact this month I’m stepping away from my kindle altogether and that feels nice too.
    Happy browsing all the cheap kindle sales 🙂

    Like

    1. I admit that I’m just the slightest bit excited that Outlander is $1.99 on Kindle right now. It probably won’t be by the time I get around to owning a Kindle, but I have the Outlander series in hardcover, trade, mass market… guess I should add digital copy to that too.

      Like

  12. I love my e-reader, just got one in October but since 2010 I read ebooks. First on my computer at home, than on tablet, but discovered that ereader is so much better.
    I have the Paperwhite and Love It. The light is strong but don’t hurt my eyes and read on the e-ink is better for me.

    Like

  13. I really love my Kindle Paperwhite. It’s perfect for bedtime reading with the back light, plus it saves me so much physical storage space and it fits in every handbag I own. It’s okay to change your mind.

    Like

  14. I hope you like your ereader! I was skeptical about ereaders for a while, but I love love love my Nook. It’s wonderful being able to use NetGalley, and get e-books from the library, and all the other glorious things my Nook can do. And reading in bed is great too.

    Like

    1. I hope I like it too, when I get it, lol. I was considering the Nook GlowLight, but I keep hearing things about how B&N isn’t doing so good and they’ve lost a lot of money on the Nook, so now I worry a bit about getting one and then suddenly not being able to get books or customer service for it… It’s probably not a HUGE concern, but enough to make me hesitate.

      Like

  15. I never intended e-reader to replace physical books, it’s just a nice addition. For me, the main reason for buying Kindle was the simple fact that I’m running out of space for physical books, but I must say that while travelling and reading in bed it is excellent as well.

    I haven’t announced in public in the past that I will never get an e-reader (even though I thought like that in my head for a long time), so it was a bit surprising when one of my friend’s reaction was something like “Omg I can’t believe you betrayed the real books”. Yeah, you are welcome to stay in the cave forever… (Not that I think people who choose to read physical books only are old in thinking; more like his whole attitude and arguments were so annoyingly arrogant, snobbish and “I’m holier than thou”.)

    Like

    1. I hope I never sounded snobby! I probably did… but I wasn’t intending to. I don’t think books are magical and that they smell great and all that, but I DO prefer tangible items. And that time that Amazon supposedly changed all uses of the word “nook” in their ebooks to say “kindle” kind of freaks me out.

      BUT, like you said, I’m not going to replace physical books with it. Now, being able to read in bed is just a big enough deal for me that it’s worth an e-reader.

      Like

      1. I think when speaking about some general things I also can come out snobby (working on it!), and it’s fine – but in this case it hurt a bit because obviously I went to my friend and was really excited about my new e-reader and wanted to share the joy, so in that sense his behaviour was slightly.. dunno… unfriendly? 😀

        Like, I can say that generally I don’t like Dan Brown books because I don’t think the writing is very good, but if my friend came to me and was happy that he/she had gotten a new Dan Brown book, and really excited about it, I wouldn’t start going “zomg why do you read this crap” because I’d know that friend likes it and it makes them happy to read it, so I’d be happy with them, even if I wouldn’t read the book myself. If that makes more sense now 🙂

        Like

      2. That does make sense, and I wouldn’t do that to people I know who are excited about a certain book, or e-reader, or show, etc. Well, I’m tempted to sometimes, but I don’t, lol. (Okay, except I do kind of shake my head at my friend who watches and loves Ancient Aliens and believes most of it… but come on now.)

        Like

  16. Woo! Go Sarah! Welcome to the dark side! 🙂

    I don’t use my ereader ALL the time, but I do love it when I’m taking a book with me to the doctor’s office or the dentist or something. I use my reader that lights up when I feed the little one at night. I use it in bed sometimes. When we travel, it’s great. Light and portable and perfect for loading LOTS of books on it. I can use it with the library, which is especially great in the winter when I don’t actually want to travel TO the library.

    So many great uses! I hope you love it if/when you get one. 🙂

    Like

  17. Soooo I tend to rant about ebooks too and then I just got a tablet for christmas and save one book, all I’ve read are ebooks. I’m kind of crazy with it suddenly. So I get it. And I’m pretty sure that I’ll be writing a post like this soon.

    Like

  18. The thing about e-books and physical books is that you don’t have to choose one over the other. You can have both. I buy more physical books than e-books, and use my Kindle mostly for ARCs and for reading on the metro.

    Word of warning: E-readers are super dangerous when you finish the first book in a series and it ends on a cliffhanger and you need to read the next book NOW and then suddenly it’s 3:30 am and you have work the next day and just one ore chapter… 😛

    Like

    1. I will keep that in mind about series-reading on e-readers, lol. There are probably some that I would do that… but then I’d want the physical copy too, if I’m liking that much. They should really start doing physical/e-book bundles.

      Like

    1. Maaaan, I hope I don’t get addicted to requesting e-galleys. I’m going to have to be REALLY strict about that. My whole blogging thing is that I don’t really like taking or requesting ARCs because I hate the obligation, you know?

      Like

  19. My husband got me a kindle a couple years ago and it took me more than a year before I used it regularly. I still prefer real books, but I love using it when I travel or when I am reading a huge book. It’s much easier to carry around. I’d recommend signing up for some daily kindle deal emails. I won’t but any that are more than a couple bucks.

    Like

    1. I’ve heard of some email service called BookBub that gathers up the really good ebook deals and sends you emails about them. I’m excited to try out the Kindle, but I know I’ll still prefer real books too.

      Like

Talk to me.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s