Reviewing E-Readers

I recently read that for the first time, digital books and media have outpaced paper in sales. This is surely good news for the rain forests, as well as for those of us that can’t fit anything more on our shelves. Space, too, is a commodity. But of course, there are some–my own spouse among them–that have just not adjusted to digital books and need the physical book to enjoy the experience. If you are the latter, you won’t really need the rest of this article. So for once in my life, I’m going to be brief, and give you the key points of my experiences with various types of digital readers:

NOOK (WITH LIGHT)

  • Last tried it in 2013
  • Lasted 6 months
  • Lightweight, convenient while it lasted; easy to annotate and highlight
  • Charged it daily
  • Purchased books at full cover price that I regret paying for now
  • Died when the light burned through the page, like a high beam flashlight pointed at one’s eyes.

KINDLE BASE MODEL

  • Last tried in 2014-2015
  • Lasted 1 year
  • Lightweight, no light, no frills
  • Used strictly for DRCs and library books
  • highlighting and annotating possible
  • Charged it daily
  • Died when I wore it out; no longer accepted charge.

KINDLE PAPERWHITE

  • Last tried in late 2015-early 2016
  • Lasted 6 months
  • Lightweight
  • highlighting and annotating used touch screen; nice!
  • Used strictly for DRCs and library e-books
  • Charged it daily
  • Mostly died when Ox, the huge beagle puppy, chewed on the corner
  • Completely died a month or two later, which was frankly a relief, as I was forced to guess two words of every page after Ox did a number on it.

DROPBOX/EBOOKS

  • Used intermittently for years on laptop, only for the rare DRC I was dying to read and could not access via Kindle or Nook
  • Have begun using on my tablet, but Kindle app is so convenient that I keep forgetting I even have it installed
  • Only for books free to me
  • Kind of a pain in the butt
  • Strictly a last resort.

KINDLE APP ON TABLET AND ANDROID PHONE

  • Used since the puppy ate my last Kindle in June 2016
  • Already had the tablet and was already paying line charges on cell bill, so no extra cost to me
  • Completely addictive; clear print, color highlighting for first time makes it possible to color code my notes, with yellow for basic info, blue for problem spots in DRC, orange for questions and points of interest, and red for passages I may want to quote in my review. Notes I’ve typed in can be accessed through the “notebook” link in the app.
  • Only for books free to me
  • Charge it daily, read for 4-5 hours and use lowest light setting possible
  • As long as this tablet works and the Kindle app is free, I will never use anything else. Would I buy another tablet and agree to a monthly line charge for this? Not so sure. But while I’m locked in, why not?
  • Use on phone seems more geared to casual reader; a very small screen for someone that reads fast and long. Not my first choice, but adequate.

HAVE NOT TRIED OR USED:

  • Any Apple product, per instructions from the house IT guy–the same one that won’t read books digitally. Go figure.
  • Kindle Fire–though if my tablet dies, and if I can get one without a phone contract for use strictly as an e-reader, I’d give it a go.