Saturday, December 17, 2011

ebook secrets ... shhhhh!

Leo Tolstoy, Age 20, 1848
Don't tell anyone I told you, but here are some of the secrets ebook lovers have discovered and do not want to share.  This is why they can't go back to books.

Secret No. 1:  No Glasses Required!

Know what this is?    Aa

You probably don't if you don't read ebooks.

"Aa" is the key on the Kindle that lets you set the font size so no matter where you are you can read WITHOUT putting your glasses on.  (That is, if you are myopic.)  And, let me tell you, once you get used to being able to read without having to go HUNT FOR YOUR GLASSES, it's very hard to get used to reading a real book again, where you can't change the font size instantly.  Like that baby on Youtube who thinks a magazine is an iPad, you'll find yourself whacking the paper book expecting the font to get bigger.

Secret No. 2:  No Lights Required!

If you have a dumb old paper book and you read from daylight into darkness, you have to either get up and turn on the light or go find a little clippy light.  With an ebook, you likely have a built-in light with the cute old Kindle cover, or you have the Kindle Fire or iPad which means the book is "lit" without doing anything.  Sounds like no big deal, but there are many times and places you want to read where turning on a big old light overhead is either very inconvenient or disruptive of others.  Ebook readers love not having to mess with lighting.

Secret No. 3:  Effing Count Alexei Kirillovich Vronsky 

If you read novels, and most ebook readers do, there is something so WONDERFUL about a quick search to find out who the hell a certain character is, with an unpronounceable  name like this one.  I mean, if you read Tolstoy and don't speak Russian, you are lost in a snowstorm of complicated character names.  Who can remember who the hell Count Alexei Kirillovich Vronsky is anyway?!  And you BETTER remember who Vronsky is, because he's Anna Karenina's lover and she throws herself under the train for the bastard. Not only does the plain old Kindle let you search the name, finding the first time it appears and other important data, but with the super cool upgrades on the Kindle Fire, it practically gives you all the Spark Notes info on the guy.  You start to feel less like a reader and more like a private eye.  What paper book can do that for you in 5 seconds?!

Secret No. 4:  Have I Got A Deal For You!

If you have a Kindle, you get so many terrific deals on books EVERY DAY, it's almost impossible to imagine going into a bookstore anymore.  I mean, maybe you could go into a bookstore, use one of their big comfy armchairs, open your Kindle and see what great books are on sale today at Amazon, download one in a split second and sit there and read, but that would be very rude behavior.  Can you honestly use a bookstore's chair, with no intention to buy their wares as you sit next to a hardcover book, priced at $19.95 or more and read the SAME BOOK in the e-version which you just bought for $1.00?! Please, be fair.  As the Ebook Wars rage, be polite enough to avert your eyes from the hopeless victims.

These are just a few of the secrets, I refuse to tell the others.


  1. Dead on! If I were making a list of the reasons to use an ebook, these would be my top 4 too.

    #5 would be "instant gratification when you buy a new book"

    Cheers :)

  2. While I dearly love reading my ebooks, for all the reasons you offer, both my feelings for small, local businesses and the thoughts of some of my librarian friends, have me lamenting the likely death of the local bookstore. A crying shame, if ever there was one.


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