Friday, January 21, 2011

To Kindle or Not to Kindle...That is the Question.

So I don’t think it’s a huge secret that I’ve always been a huge opponent of the Kindle (and the Nook, and any other device that takes away the actual physical action of turning a page in a book). I LOVE books. And by that I mean real books: books that I can see, touch, and smell (not taste, that’s yucky). And yes, I smell books. Sue me. I read all different kinds of books—fiction, non-fiction, biography, autobiography, etc. The Great Gatsby and The Fountainhead are two of my favorites, as is anything about John Adams and then I also enjoyed the Russell Brand books. One of my most favorite stores in the world is Strand bookstore (it’s in NYC on 8th just down from Union Square). I can spend hours perusing the 18 miles of books—some used, some new. One day when I have a house I want to have a library in it full of books on bookshelves that are wall to wall, floor-to-ceiling, and there’s a ladder that rolls around for the higher shelves. Think the library from Beauty and the Beast, but most likely on a smaller scale since I will probably not live in a castle. Anyway, that said, I’ve felt a lot of pressure lately to jump on the Kindle train. There’s part of me that wants to take that leap. It’s as though there is a devil on one shoulder and an angel on the other. The devil’s saying “do it, get a kindle, it’s so much more convenient for traveling…” and then the angel’s saying, “no don’t do it, think of all the books that need your love and a place on one of your bookshelves.” I’m really not sure what to do, and I’m aware that to some this may seem petty and nerdy with you saying, “it’s just a book,” but I love walking into my apartment and seeing my bookshelves (I have 3—2 floor-to-ceiling and 1 half-way) full of all my books. That’s another thing…I kind of need to get another bookshelf and I don’t have a place to put it without rearranging all of my furniture and I’m pretty sure the rearrangement wouldn’t look very good. Which means that unless I stop reading, or start piling books places (I think not), I have to get a Kindle. But even then I feel like I would be betraying real books.

Here’s my thought: I think I’m going to get a kindle but just for certain categories. The Kindle will be for ebooks that are fiction, non-historical non-fiction (psychology & Christian living type books), and biographies/autobiographies that have nothing to do with my heritage. If I love a book that I read on Kindle and think I must have it in real book form, I’ll buy it. If a book has anything to do with my family history, I buy it (or it’s gifted to me)—I just about have an entire shelf dedicated to John & Abigail Adams. I also collect first editions and very old books—my most prized book is Catcher in the Rye (thanks to my brother and Zach).

So, I guess, the answer is to Kindle.

…I just hope the books forgive me…


  1. I use Kindle (on iPad) for books I want to read or skim through and don't want to spend full price on nor really keep after I read them. Anything that's more archival or interesting or elitist, like non-pulpy fiction or some business books or the like, I prefer paper editions. If I'm just doing a lot of research or learning something simple and obscure I get it on the Kindle.

  2. I should say that last night I did download the Kindle app on my iphone, but it's kind of a pain on such a small screen so purchasing an actual Kindle is going to be necessary I think.

  3. I love my Kindle...and I was in the same boat as you a couple of years ago. I still buy regular books and I still love regular books. But the Kindle is great for traveling and its great because all of the classics are free (super amazing) and then each week certain books are sold for "free" (they are usually in the "top" downloaded list for Kindle) and that has been great when I dont know what I want to read and I just want a fluff book for a plane ride or car ride or at the beach. I think its totally worth the money just for the fact that you can download a ton of books for free and then you have them all at your fingertips.

    It took me a an hour or two to get used to "clicking" from page to page, but now its like second nature.

  4. Jax, I know I keep pushing it, but I freaking LOVE my kindle! When I first got it I was kinda overwhelmed, and it took a bit of getting used to - but now I'm ALL about it. I kinda became a kindle snob, I have some books at home that I have had but never got around to reading - but I just want to read everything on my kindle only. I freaking LOVE it. I am a HUGE fan of all the freebie classics (can't beat that). If you do get one, let me know, I have a ton of other freebies that someone gave me as well. I especially love traveling with it, and keeping in my purse for when I am somewhere with a little time to kill. I love that I have everything in one little handheld device. Just Do It.