Kindle v. Kindling

Amazon is justifiably trumpeting that it’s now selling more e-books for its Kindle than new hardcovers.

Amazon has been joined by Sony, Barnes & Noble, Apple, and soon, Sharp, in the e-reader business.  And, of course, the competition has driven the price of a Kindle down $70 since I got mine just last January.  (Timing, as always, is everything.)

I really like my Kindle.  Almost as much as I still like walking into a bookstore and browsing.  I don’t know blog reader and semi-regular contributor Wendy personally, but I happen to know through a shared acquaintance that she owns a bookstore, Turning Page, in Old Lyme.  I hope Wendy and all the Wendys of the world who own small bookstores can survive the e-onslaught. 

I’m trying to do my part by reading one book on my Kindle (over dinner at work, or even on the Kindle smartphone app), and an honest-to-goodness hard copy book at home.

That book, by the way, is called “You Had To Be There.”  It’s written by regular blog contributor Terrence McCarthy.  It’s about his transition from Hartford ad man to counselor in a psych ward in Western Massachusetts.  Is there that big a difference?  (I’ve known a lot of ad agency folks.)  I’m finding out over a glass of wine every night.

The good news for the Wendys of the world is that I’m holding an actual book.  The bad news is, I had to buy it on the internet.

The page is turning.  More quickly than we could have imagined.

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About Gerry

I've been covering Connecticut news and sports since 1974. I know, I don't look that old.
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16 Responses to Kindle v. Kindling

  1. Wendy says:

    Woo Hoo!!! I’m famous…sorta. I just read your comments about Kindle, etc. Thank you for continuing to purchase “real” books! Independent book store owners are grateful, Gerry. As for the mutual acquaintance…I shall have to ponder that one and do some sleuthing. 🙂 The Turning Page survives yet another day!

  2. Mary says:

    Technology is wonderful, I’d love to own a Kindle, it would free up so much book space. I have a hard time parting ways with the hard cover, there’s nothing like a good book store to get lost in, it’s so comforting. I’m not a big bill payor over the internet either, I really like our mailman, so off the bills go in his trusty hands.

  3. James says:

    I guess I should be pleased that more people are reading books, regardless of the format. But I have this Big Brother/Fahrenheit 451 paranoia about people in power re-writing history whenever it gets inconvenient. And it’s a lot easier to alter/eliminate electronic content than hard copies.

    Also, I actually miss roaming around a bookstore looking for the book that will strike my interest on a given day. Some of the most memorable books I’ve ever read were discovered while looking for another book.

    • Gerry says:

      Never thought of that. Not sure I want to.
      I’m with you on the pleasures of roaming around a bookstore and stumbling on something unexpected. (Though I do like the Kindle feature of offering a free sample chapter or two before you buy.) There’s still something about roaming from shelf to shelf that e-books will never be able to simulate.

  4. Linda says:

    Most libraries offer a service that provides free audio book downloads if you have a valid library card with that library. You can download to any computer, IPod/IPad, just about any mobile device including most ereaders. The service is available 24/7. Most libraries have all the information right on their website’s home page. A library is also a great place to roam around not only for books, but DVDs, music CDs, artwork, museum passes, puppets. And if a library doesn’t have a particular title, you can request that they purchase it, or borrow it from another library. Let’s enjoy them all – e-books, book stores, and libraries!

  5. Thanks for the shout out, Gerry. Thanks very, very much.

  6. Beckie says:

    Funny enough, I just had this conversation w/my aunt, but regarding newspapers. The reason daily papers are dieing is because most people today get their news by the Web, radio or tv, my self-included.
    I was saying that there was just something satisfying about reading a newspaper. The action of turning the pages, the feel of the paper, the smell of the ink….I feels like an indulgance for me. I feel the same way about books. I want to feel the weight of the book and the sensations above.
    Audio books aren’t for me. I end up not paying attention.
    The e-readers also hurt my eyes after a while. Studies show we blink less while looking at a computer screen, thus causing dry eyes that are uncomfortable. My guess is that’s what I experience with the e-readers.
    For me, nothing replaces a book.

  7. Larry Wood says:

    I have used the Kindle and I have bought an iPad. I prefer the iPad over the Kindle. Next to the iPad, the Kindle is a clunker, though it is lighter to hold.

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