Monthly Archives: July 2011

E-Readers Revisited

Last September I posted my thoughts on the topic of E-Readers. I summarized that I would love such a device but cannot justify the cost. I concluded that it was not something I needed at the time.

Recently I have found myself with some quiet time holding my daughter while she sleeps. This has been a great opportunity to get some reading done. Unfortunately the fact I am holding a sleeping baby makes it hard to turn the pages of the book. It crossed my mind that an E-Reader would easily allow for one-handed reading. My wonderful husband suggested that perhaps this would be a good Mother’s Day gift. This seemed like the perfect idea.

Nook E-ReaderThe question then became “Which E-Reader should I buy?” I narrowed my choices down to two; the Nook and Kindle. I compared them to determine which was the right one for me.

One feature I considered a “must have” was a 3G connection. This would allow me to purchase a book at any time. Both options include this feature. The Nook–like my iPhone–takes the internet connection one step further and allows you to browse the web. I did not want to pay extra for this feature since I would not use it. Another feature the Nook had was that it displayed in color. I could not justify getting a device with color–again it is not something I would ever use.

Kindle E-readerIn comparison the Kindle was filled with features I would use. The fact it was not back-lit meant I could easily use it in direct sunlight. The Kindle mobile app allows me to read my books on my Macbook, iPhone, or iPad. The syncing feature allows me to pick up exactly where I left off no matter the device. My Amazon.com addiction–90% of my books have been purchased from the site–was another plus for this device. Purchasing the E-Reader from Amazon meant I could continue on with my shopping habits.

In the end the thing that finally made my decision had nothing to do with the features of either product. As a Mother’s Day special, Amazon offered a free $25 gift card with the purchase of a Kindle. This was the perfect thing to start my collection of E-Books. With my husband’s credit card in hand, I ordered the device and eagerly awaited its arrival.

Kindle App IconI have had my Kindle for two months now, and I am very happy with the decision I made. I find myself frequently enjoying how I can easily download several sample selections to my Kindle to peruse. I can determine if I’m interested in a book before spending money on it. I love being able to easily read books with one hand. Since I can purchase a new book at any time, means I always have something to read. I could go on and on about all the reasons I love my Kindle.

Now that I have an E-reader, I eagerly endorse them to anyone who asks. I initially thought I would miss having paper books, but that hasn’t been the case. I think this purchase has been instrumental in me meeting my reading goal in record time. These devices may not be for everyone, but I am really glad I finally got one.

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Abandon by Meg Cabot

I mentioned Meg Cabot’s latest release Abandon in my “Most Anticipated Books of 2011” post. In that post I discussed how I felt a bit apprehensive about this release. Here are my thoughts on the story.

From Goodreads.com

Book cover of Abandon by Meg CabotNew from #1 New York Times bestselling author Meg Cabot, a dark, fantastical story about this world . . . and the underworld.

Though she tries returning to the life she knew before the accident, Pierce can’t help but feel at once a part of this world, and apart from it. Yet she’s never alone . . . because someone is always watching her. Escape from the realm of the dead is impossible when someone there wants you back.

But now she’s moved to a new town. Maybe at her new school, she can start fresh. Maybe she can stop feeling so afraid.

Only she can’t. Because even here, he finds her. That’s how desperately he wants her back. She knows he’s no guardian angel, and his dark world isn’t exactly heaven, yet she can’t stay away . . . especially since he always appears when she least expects it, but exactly when she needs him most.

But if she lets herself fall any further, she may just find herself back in the one place she most fears: the Underworld.

This book confused the crap out of me. The way in which Cabot wrote this book had me often wondering what was going on. I had to read it twice in order to follow the plot–this has never happened before! There were two reasons for this befuddlement: 1) There have been three times in Pierce’s life when this “mysterious figure” has made an appearance. The author doesn’t explain all three of them until the second half of the book. 2) The encounters are only vaguely referenced before they are detailed. This made me confused about which encounter Pierce was talking about at times.

The perplexed feeling was made worse by the author’s mixing of flashbacks into the story. The fact she frequently went from present to past with little warning left me lost. I often found myself several paragraphs into a memory before realizing I had gone into the past. I would then have to reread the last page or so to catch back up.

I did feel that the plot was a bit “Twilight-esque”. [Spoiler Alert] The novel centers around a dead young man in love with a young woman who can not get keep out of trouble. [/Spoiler Alert] I could not help notice the similarities between the main characters of this book and of Stephanie Meyer’s novels. That being said, Cabot tells a story around these characters that is entertaining, and I found her use of the underworld to be original. In the end found myself enjoying the story–once I understood it–despite being reminded of Meyer’s characters.

Review: After finishing my first read of this novel, I felt disoriented, thus making me feel disappointed with the book. It’s unfortunate as there was much to like about this story. After my second reread I found the plot was quite entertaining. Cabot created great suspense leaving me wondering what will happen in the next book in the series Underworld. I wished that I could have enjoyed these things the first time.