My reading life is about to change.* I will soon be the owner of an Amazon Kindle electronic reader!
They came back in stock last week after having sold out in less than six hours after being released last December. When I learned that my sister would be coming to London on a business trip, I immediately ordered one for her to bring for me. Woohoo!!
I will be missing out on the wireless connectivity that’s available only in the U.S. but it’s much more important to me that I have access to books in a timely fashion. When we started our expat life in 1998, books in English weren’t always easy to find.
- In Taiwan, there was a decent selection at Eslite even though I was at the mercy of whatever was on the shelf.
- In Japan, Maruzen was ok but it was very expensive. A couple of years after we’d moved there, Amazon.co.jp launched and it was wonderful!!! (Yes, that deserved three exclamation points.)
- In Vietnam, very few English books could be found in the shops except for classics. Relatively new releases with Vietnam as the main subject were available but only as pirated versions on the street corner. Otherwise, the International Ladies in Vietnam library was actually pretty well stocked but in disarray. So once again at the mercy of whatever was on the shelf.
I’m not trying to make it sound like I was very deprived, though. We made frequent trips to Singapore where the selection of English books between Borders and Kinokuniya is quite good. My personal stash of not-yet-read books is also consistently worth several months if not a year of reading.
- Right now, we’re in London, UK which is, of course, fabulous for books but can still be quite pricey esp. compared to the U.S.
In contrast, Amazon Kindle books are $9.99 or less and available immediately for download.
Whether you prefer biographies, classics, investment guides, thrillers, or sci-fi, thousands of your favorite books are available. The Kindle Store offers more than 100 of 112 books currently found on the New York Times® Best Seller list and we’re adding more all the time. New York Times Best Sellers are $9.99, and you’ll find many books for less.
You spoiled lot in the U.S. will get to download sample chapters as well not to mention doing it all wirelessly (assuming you’re in the wireless coverage area). I, on the other hand, will be very satisfied with downloading my content via USB. Three features I’m really looking forward to are the built-in dictionary, search of all materials downloaded onto your Kindle, and clippings and notes which can be uploaded to the computer for other uses.
The first set of books I intend to download includes:
Escape by Carolyn Jessop
The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch
The Fortune Cookie Chronicles by Jennifer 8. Lee (If you’re wondering why she has a number for her middle name, she added it herself when she was a teenager because “Jennifer” is too common.)
Bringing Home the Birkin by Michael Tonello
Pretty is What Changes by Jessica Queller
My books wishlist (started using delishlist in March) is, of course, much longer than this. Unfortunately, not all books are available for the Kindle. So while you may still find me at home with traditional paper books in hand, when out and about, I’ll most likely bring my Kindle.
What do you think of the Kindle and of eReaders in general? If you already have a Kindle, what books have you downloaded?
*Although hopefully not in the way of what’s been assumed about pregnant and post-partum women and their reading habits.
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