It must be love, Ebook love..

You’ll have to bear with me as this is my first effort blogging on the iPad and it feels rather weird – but I have to get used to it as my family and I are embarking on a two month camping odyssey taking in most of the national parks in the Western United States. Tomorrow we head to Sequoia National Park and then Yosemite to start things off. Although I hope to be blogging from the road, there will be a few Mondays where we will be of the grid – but I am hopeful that my trusty iPad will keep me on track. Let’s just call it an adventure.

The one thing I do know for sure is that I am now an official ebook convert. I have to confess I initially viewed ebooks with trepidation. I was fully wedded to my paper book world – until now. Yes, it’s official I’m in love…okay and perhaps just a little addicted to my iPad.

It’s been only a couple of weeks and I have already amassed over 30 iBooks, 5 kindle ebooks and 28 Barnes and Noble ebooks. Now most of these are freebies I admit but still, it’s getting to be a bit of an addiction – believe me I am trying to be restrained! I just can’t help myself. I have also found myself trolling through the free ebook titles on all the sites – hey, you just never know when I might want to read that historical western or that paranormal erotica… Interestingly enough my major worry with ebooks used to be how to differentiate between the legitimate versus the self published but now I am actually browsing I find it is easy to see the distinction ( call me a snob but I haven’t downloaded any books from smash words as yet). To me the fact that publishers are giving me the chance to read titles like John’s No Mercy is great marketing and already I can see how free ebook samples can lure new readers in.

I also love how I get to carry a mini library wherever I go. On a recent flight I could keep my kids entertained with a variety of Beatrix Potter books complete with illustrations and it felt reassuring to know that I could read a number of other books in an instant if they wanted me too. In the past I have been weighed down by all the books I have had to carry.

Okay so enough of the love fest – what excites me is how technology has reinvigorated my love of books and, even more importantly, my children are just as excited as me. The reading experience has not been lost at all – just made a teeny bit cooler. So what piece of technology has done the same for you? Do you remember the thrill of the Walkman or watching your first VHS movie? What technology do you think will help reignite the passion for reading?

15 thoughts on “It must be love, Ebook love..

  1. When the Walkman first came out (long before the iPod), I remember reading articles that commented that people using them became cut off from the environment, and began doing a robotic-looking “Walkman walk” as they trudged along to their interior symphony (Or more likely, rock concert). I think as a society we’re undergoing an even more substantial conversion as we slowly transition to newer generations of gadgets. I’ve read about studies that indicate that the constant use of Internet-based devices is actually altering our brain chemistries, so that we’re comprehending less than people who read linear text:
    Does the Internet Make You Dumber?

    I doubt that people will worry too much about this issue, though. They have to have their constant fixes of Twitter, Facebook, email, Google alerts, et al. As a parent, though, I’m glad my child mostly eschews the Internet except when needed for school, and doesn’t even care for TV. No surprise, she’s a science student who is able to focus on complex tasks for long periods of time.

  2. Clare, have fun on your adventure vacation. I envy you. I think that any device or concept that gets people reading, especially young readers, is well worth it.

  3. No question about it, we will still have the mighty paper book to save us if need be! I am just about to get into the car so I guess I will find out just how reliable my gadgets will be…

  4. I wrote a rather lengthy comparison on my own blog yesterday, comparing the iPad to the Kindle (both of which we have in the household now). I have called the iPad a Ferrari and the Kindle a Yugo, but in a lot of ways they’re not comparable. The Kindle is an e-reader. The iPad is a high-end multi-media device as powerful as many laptops. When I pulled the Kindle out of the box I thought it looked like a piece of junk, but reading on it is primarily a pleasure. I love the iPad (when I can get my hands on it), but I compared it to reading in the middle of an amusement park–there’s just so many other distracting things you can do on it than read.

    And I still love the benefits of paper. Go figure.

  5. I received an iPad for my birthday, and my daughter is now completely obsessed with the animated Alice in Wonderland book. I’m all for anything that engenders a love of reading, in any format.

  6. I went public with my resistance to the Kindle over a year ago with a post here in the Killzone. I proudly pronounced my Luddite status–a paper purist, through and through. Now I renounce all of it.

    As much as I travel, the ready accessibility of an instantly refreshable library is not just amazing, it’s oddly comforting. I received my Kindle as a Father’s Day gift last February, and just like that, my life became less complicated. Wherever I am in the country, the Washington Post is delivered every morning to my Kindle. When one of my writer buddies has a new book released, I can read it immediately, for a fraction of the price that I would otherwise pay.

    Before I actually used one the beasts, I worried about the reading experience itself–that I would miss the feel of the book in my hands. At one level, I suppose I do, but an interesting read is an interesting read. Once you’re into the story, the device itself becomes as invisible as any book does. If you’re a commuter, though, standing in crowded trains, the ability to keep one hand in contact with something solid the whole time while turning “pages” with a press of the thumb is pretty darned cool.

    As I write this post, I’m listening to music through my new iPhone, passing my iPod officially into retirement. That’s one more fewer thing I have to carry when I travel. Again, pretty darned cool.

    As for the iPad, I’m not a fan. Granted, my current equipment load requires a netbook that could be rendered redundant by the iPad, but in its current version, the iPad is still too heavy to read one-handed for any length of time.

    Now, if only I can convince my big-boy job employer to grant my iPhone access to the company’s email system, I can finally ditch the BlackBerry. One thing at a time, I suppose . . .

    John Gilstrap

  7. iPads, E-readers, E-books…….have you people lost your minds. Don’t you know this is all just a big marketing scam to get you to buy more stuff. And what will you do when the power goes out…go hudle with the masses outside Starbucks looking for an open outlet?…..(GOD I WANT AN iPAD SO BAD (children are you litening)….lol)

    Clare have fun on your vacation and enjoy your iPad.

  8. I remember when I could buy whatever electro-apparati I wanted, but now if my iBook crashes I suspect I’ll be writing on a pad with a quill.. I might not actually mind.

  9. I remember when I could buy whatever electro-apparati I wanted, but now if my iBook crashes I suspect I’ll be writing on a pad with a quill.. I might not actually mind.

  10. I realize I am coming to this conversation a day late so if I get no answer it’s understandable.

    Clare said she hasn’t bought from Smashwords yet. I was wondering why that is. Is there some perception about Smashwords of which I am unaware?

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