How I got my first Kindle

01:39, Mar 31 2014

I know I talked about my birthday last time.  But as birthdays go, it was an unusually good one, because my Beloved Non-Reader got me a Kindle.  As I confided to Facebook, he doesn't always do presents, but when he does, they're freaking good ones.


I've ummed and aahed for a couple of years about whether I actually wanted an e-reader.  I didn't (and still don't) know much about them.  I'm one of those people who like to own and hold a real thing.  I still use CDs, DVDs and of course, books.  But over Christmas, when the BN-R and I got a rare chance to go shopping together, I ended up hefting a couple in my hands and discussing their possible merits with him. 

It was still a shock to open one up on my birthday morning.  It's not the latest bells and whistles, touch screen, backlit, it's really a tablet, Kindle Fire job.  It's pretty basic.  But I love it.  I think about it all day.  A whole new world has opened up.

I actually agonised over what to get first.  Something I wouldn't normally prioritise, but should read.  Something I wouldn't go to the trouble of getting from the library, borrowing from a friend or buying a hard copy of.  Of course, something I don't already own.  I ended up getting Bill Bryson's A Short History of Nearly Everything.  I read the first paragraph to see if the screen annoyed me.  It didn't. 



In the end, the first book I read completely on my Kindle (should I name it?  Do people give their gadgets names?) was A Study in Scarlet, the first time I've read any Sherlock Holmes.  Not for any particular reason other than that it was the first thing I saw after searching 'free' that appealed.

The whole thing has been a much more momentous occasion than I'd ever considered.  I suppose it'd be the same if I (as the last person on Earth not to have one) got an iThing.  Which app to get first?

I lack enough disposable income to be a big consumer of gadgetry.  Even the ancient rellies are more teched-up than me.  So it was a pretty huge leap to make, to add digital consumption to my favourite leisure activity.  The BN-R is beginning to realise he's just lost rather a lot more of my attention.

What are your thoughts on e-readers?  If you have one, how much did you deliberate over that first download?  And what was it?

* Rohani Alexander is a writer, mother and regular guest blogger for Reading is Bliss.

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