lørdag den 6. november 2010

Why I Went Over to the Dark Side

I have thought about this for a few weeks, and yesterday I finally did it. I ordered that Kindle e-reader from Amazon.

Some reasons for wanting an e-reader
As I read more and more British and American books, I want to cut shipping costs. As I always have to add a couple of pounds or dollars for the shipping, I have bought many of my books second-hand so far. Another reason for this is that when I buy new books, I have to pay 25 % in VAT as a Danish resident. With e-books I don´t have to pay more for my books than the rest of the world.

My second reason is that some publishers have begun offering me review examples of e-books. I don´t mind the least reading old books, but I like reviewing a few new ones once in a while.

Some questions I tried to find an answer to first
Could I read Danish ebooks in my Kindle?
(I won´t buy many, new ebooks cost from eighteen to more than thirty dollars. But what if a Danish publisher offered to send review examples of e-books?). The answer is YES, they can be converted via a free programme so I won´t have to buy a second e-reader.

I know how much I love the feel of a book in my hand. Could I get used to reading on the screen?

My first test: reading a PDF-book on my PC. I got through it in two days, and the reading experience was ok, but not recommended.
My second test: I downloaded Amazon´s programme: Kindle for PC + a free book. Clearly a better reading experience.

What is the price level?
Well, there is no clear answer yet. Though Danish e-books are expensive, they seem to cost 5-10 dollars less than paper editions. On the other hand, Amazon.com have just raised their e-book prices considerably.

What about availability? 
There is always Amazon.com, but a few weeks ago I thought I could also buy e-books via British chains like Waterstones. Not any more; recently some of the major British sellers have stopped selling to customers from abroad.

So why did I push that order button yesterday? 
Don´t know. Perhaps because my husband was tired of all my on-the-one-hand-on-the-other-hand vacillation. And don´t worry about me. Once I have made up my mind, I never regret it. I may not love my Kindle, but I´ll find the positive sides to owning it – and use it.

Some recent blog posts about e-readers: 

Kimbofo (who gave inspiration to the title)
Maxine about the restrictions.
Bernadette about her eAdventure.

Tell me your e-reader story: do you have one? Do you love it? 
Have you considered buying one? Why (not)?

19 kommentarer:

Anonym sagde ...

Dorte - Thanks for sharing your thought process about getting a Kindle. You really outline clearly what might make a reader go one way or the other. I still haven't made up my mind yet...

Unknown sagde ...

I'll tell you this, since receiving my Kindle, I've bought almost a new book a day. However, one of my favorite features is that I can easily upload all my PDF files onto the Kindle and so a lot of textbooks I can read on the go. Also, I haven't found the books on Kindle to be too expensive, (most $1.99-2.99) but maybe we read different books.


Cathryn Grant sagde ...

When I saw the title for this post, I knew exactly what the topic was! [In summer 2009 I blogged about eooks under the very same theme ;)]

Fast forward to fall 2010 ... if I don't get a Kindle for my birthday this month, I'll be purchasing one.

Soon I'll be joining you on "the dark side". Happy Reading.

Dorte H sagde ...

Margot: I won´t try to persuade anyone else, but Bernadette and Maxine´s posts made an impression on me, and I think that if they can get used to reading on the screen, so can I.

Clarissa: I know there are some free classics, but apart from those, most of the books I have seen cost around $ 10. What I am after is new crime fiction of good quality, and if you can recommend any of those, I am interested!

Cathryn: now that I have finally ordered it, I can hardly wait. I am not really a gadgety sort of person, but a reading device is something else ;D

Bibliophile sagde ...

Congratulations! Incidentally, I don't think of it as going over to the dark side, but rather as adding an extra dimension to my reading and saving space in my luggage when I travel. I haven't got one yet, but I plan to as soon as I have been able to test drive a Kindle, a Kobo and a Nook.
Would you please post a report once you have got used to it?

Kelly sagde ...

Congratulations on your purchase!

My younger daughter is considering a Kindle because of all the reading she has to do in her graduate program.

I've been asking my friends who have them lots of questions about them. I didn't realize you could "archive" your books (in cyberspace) after reading them and retrieve them later if necessary. Also you can have it read aloud to you.

The reason I haven't gotten one is because I have SO many books sitting on my shelf.

I bet you'll really enjoy yours.

Maxine Clarke sagde ...

I agree with bibliophile, for me it is just one more way to read, eg like a library book. Sometimes it is convenient to read an e-book, or one can get hold of a book free in that format (for example there are several free e-books on Amazon not just of out-of-copyright authors but recent novels by eg Lee Weeks and Claire Seeber). Obviously they are good for holidays or other trips, also, where weight restrictions apply to luggage!

Good luck with your Kindle, I hope you enjoy it.

(Karen and Kerrie both told me about Netgalley for free e-review copies. I suppose you must know about this site.)

Dorte H sagde ...

Bibliophile: I am sure I will shout it from the rooftops as soon as my Kindle arrives, and I promise to keep you updated on my progress.

Kelly: I am glad I waited for this model. I don´t think the earlier ones were optimal for Scandinavian users. I also have plenty of books on my shelf, but I *do* like the idea of free review books.

Maxine: the title was just for fun (inspired by Kimbofo´s post). I think it may have been Bernadette who told me about NetGalley, and they have sent me my first PDF-novel. My review will be up by Monday or Tuesday.

Kelly sagde ...

I know you pretty much stick with crime fiction, but my friend also told me most all the "classics" are free for Kindle. That would be a plus for me since there are so many of those I never got around to reading.

I look forward to hearing all about it when it arrives!

Dorte H sagde ...

Kelly: I do plan to read a classic now and then. I could re-read Sherlock Holmes, and there are also other Golden Age mysteries that may be available for free or cheaply.

Bernadette sagde ...

Welcome to the dark side. As you know I love my eReader as a device so I hope you enjoy yours as much and save yourself a bit of money too.

Dorte H sagde ...

Bernadette: thank you. I may not save a lot, but that is because I have got into a habit of buying most of my books second-hand. I´ll probably buy more newly-published books in this way, and hopefully at a fair price - whatever that is for an e-book.

Private sagde ...

It's on my christmas wish-list, but I can't seem to decide if they're god or the devil...

Dorte H sagde ...

Alexandra: I am sure it depends on how you use it (didn´t that sound pious? :D)

Louise sagde ...

Dorte thanks for this post. I am just like you: on one hand...and on the other....and it is driving everyone crazy, especially myself. I still haven't caved in, but I am looking much forward to hear about your experiences with Kindle. I do have to say that I want one. I think.

Dorte H sagde ...

Louise: I promise a post about my experiences in a few days.

Beth F sagde ...

I don't have a a Kindle but am on my second eReader and I suspect that I'll be upgrading every few years.

Dorte H sagde ...

Beth: I must admit I haven´t thought about upgrading yet, but I suspect it will be just like your computer. You thought the first one was for life, but then ...

Anonym sagde ...

I just recently bought a Kindle and I really like it! I figured out a mixture of e- and paper books is right for me and it is really great! Here is my full review: http://booksaroundtheworld.wordpress.com/2010/11/01/kindle-first-impressions/