myspace layouts, myspace codes, glitter graphics Totally Biased Book and Movie Review: The Amazon Kindle Review

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Amazon Kindle Review

Kindle: Amazon's 6" Wireless Reading Device

Price: $299.00

The Amazon Kindle... also known as :"The device I didn't realize I couldn't live without until I got one and loved it beyond anything other than my children and cold gin...but that's a really long name, so let's just stick with the original, if boring, Amazon Kindle."

I resisted buying one because of the price tag. Hello, I have SO many things on the list of stuff I could use $300 for, it's not even funny... (and I mean that. I have an actual LIST of things that I could spend $300 on, and it doesn't make you laugh.
At all.
I know, I've tried it on several people.)

...but then my BFF, who is a truly awesome gift-giver, gave me one for my birthday. So the dilemma was gone, the Kindle was in my hands, and I immediately began buying books to be downloaded via free "whispernet" ...and it's quick, too.
There are some beta-testing-kinda thingies on the Kindle, like web browsing. You can visit the Kindle store from the menu. You can download blogs and newspapers and audiobooks, so they say. You can listen to some books in this really bizarre, robotic voice (male or female, your choice, as well as the speed of if you like your books to be read to you like..."The quick brownuh Fox jump-ed overthe dog was the questeeown you askedme...", well here you go. I think it's horrible, and I have a computer and or blackberry for my other Internet needs, so I use my Kindle solely for...reading.

My first complaint was girly in nature and a bit embarrassing to admit, but hell, I'm all about being real, yo. So here goes.... It wasn't very attractive.
It's plain, and white, and the screen is shades of black and gray. This thing could be in sooooo many cute colors and designs, but nope, three hundred bucks for a 6" by 8" WHITE PLASTIC device with a boring old b&w screen.
Secondly, I thought they couldn't possibly have enough books for this thing yet, it's a fairly new technology, and it will take time before the titles and authors I want to see.
Well, I was right about the first thing. It's boring to look at. I was wrong about the second. There are a lot, a LOT of books available for this pretty little critter.
Let's just give you the official Amazon spiel, shall we?

Say Hello to Kindle

Slim: Just over 1/3 of an inch, as thin as most magazines

Lightweight: At 10.2 ounces, lighter than a typical paperback

Wireless: 3G wireless lets you download books right from your Kindle, anytime, anywhere; no monthly fees, service plans, or hunting for Wi-Fi hotspots

Books in Under 60 Seconds: Get books delivered in less than 60 seconds; no PC required

Paper-like Display: Reads like real paper; now boasts 16 shades of gray for clear text and even crisper images

Long Battery Life: 25% longer battery life; read for days without recharging

Carry Your Library: Holds over 1,500 books

Read-to-Me: With the new text-to-speech feature, Kindle can read every newspaper, magazine, blog, and book out loud to you, unless the book's rights holder made the feature unavailable

Free Book Samples: Download and read first chapters for free before you decide to buy.

Large Selection: Over 350,000 books plus U.S. and international newspapers, magazines, and blogs available

Low Book Prices: New York Times Best Sellers and New Releases $9.99, unless marked otherwise

When they say "large selection", they kind of mean it, which is refreshing in today's duplicitous marketing world, eh? There are many titles, and here is the best part... they have LOTS of them for ZERO dollars.
You heard me. There are many books that they will give you for the low, low price of nothing. And the catch? Well, there technically isn't one...although I have discovered that most of the freebies are the first in a series. Which might seem tricksy but is just dang good business. I'm not going to tell you how many books I have purchased that I probably wouldn't have even heard of, that just happen to be second-third-forth-and-so-on in a series, that are sequels to those delightful free ones I downloaded. I won't tell you because it would just embarrass us both, and probably make you feel like you should at least mention my $300 list, and the fact that I'm not going to get very far on it if I keep spending all my stinking money on books.
But that brings me to my final point... I am actually saving bucks. Especially on titles that are in hardback format down at Barnes and Noble, going for $25-$35 a pop, read in a half a day. There are certain authors, people who live, smugly, on my Keepers Shelf, and they know very well I will buy them in hardback, no matter how much it is. I just CANNOT wait for the soft and cheap version....hmm, that sounds dirty, but I honestly didn't mean it to. Anywayz, on my Kindle, these babies are only ten dollars. Other titles are anywhere from $9.99 on down to one penny, and let's not forget our darling free books.
If you have any idea how much I read... well, let's just say terms like "junkie" and "fix" and "blew the inheritance on pages, man" all are appropriate to the situation. I spend absurd amounts of money on books, even when I only shop in USED books stores. Then there's the overflow factor- I have stacks upon stacks upon stacks of books, everywhere... in bookshelves, by my bed, on the floor by the couches and chairs, on the steps going upstairs and downstairs, in the bathroom... and then boxes uncountable in the shed out back. I have so many books that when I want to re-read one (which is often...I like to read books over and over, like some people like to watch movies repeatedly), I often can't find it. I end up buying a new copy. I have probably four complete sets of Lee Child's books, and let's not even think about Stephen King or Dean Koontz. I know, I know, it's crazy, but what can I say? I'm sick. Well, the Kindle is changing this, too. All of my books are here, in my computer, or actually on the Kindle itself. Can't be lost. Can't be water-stained or torn. Can be re-downloaded when needed. It's bitchin', to put it mildly.
I am saving money in, like, buckets, because of this Kindle.
As far as the ugly goes, well, I bought a "skin" for my Kindle. It was about 18 bucks, and turned out to be a sticker that fits on the back ...only. So the front of my kindle is still its plain boring old self, but the backside, well, that's a riot of frickin beauty.
I'm sure in time they will get cheaper, sleeker, prettier, but in the meantime, they are perfectly awesome for people like me- reading junkies who cannot be without several books per week.
With that all said, I am going to be starting a new blog soon- Kaat's Kindle. My plan is to review the freebies that I get, and let people know which are worth pursuing, and which series are worth following.

And now I am off to devour te next books in the series after "His Majesty's Dragon" by Naomi Novik, which I just happened to get for free awhile back and finally got around to reading. It now appears to be $6.39, so maybe the free-ness wears off after awhile, like being drunk, or in love. Well, it's worth the 6 and a half bucks, and I'm looking forward to the rest of them very much.

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