When did Kindle Become Essential?


image by DollyGarland


I have often talked about how I prefer paper books over e-books. I still hold to that. I love paper books. I love their individuality, their aesthetics, their use as home ornaments, and most importantly being able to flip the pages and make notations within the physical books. And yet, I am also a kindle user, and as it turns out quite a dedicated one. 

This realisation comes because my poor kindle currently seems to be ill. There have been a few dodgy days of it not functioning well, but then it works and I am hopeful. Still, I think it’s best days are probably over.

It is almost three years old, which is really not that much. It should last much longer. Lifetime, in my opinion. Alas, technology today is not meant to last otherwise we would have no reason to drop more cash in Amazon’s perpetually deepening coffers. So, while my kindle was going through its sick spell, I found it immensely frustrating, even though I have other paper books.

I read multiple books at a time, and at any given time my reading choice depends on my mood. When the book I wanted to read was on my kindle, it was no good having a completely different paper book. It wasn’t about lack of reading material. It was about the lack of reading material of my choice.

The main reason Kindle’s been great is because I love to travel. I am writing this post from India, and actually glad that the trip is coming to an end, because if my kindle does die, I will be able to buy a new one soon in the US. Coincidentally, within the last two years, I have been able to travel a lot more, which meant my Kindle’s travelled too. I have not ran out of reading material, and though I always buy paper books wherever I go, having a Kindle means I always have hundreds of books at my disposal. Thus, without even realising, I became rather dependent on having my kindle around. 

Here’s how much I have used it:

2011 – 37 books read on Kindle
2012 – 23 books read on Kindle
2013 – 46 books read on Kindle
2014 – 5 books read on Kindle (so far)

That’s a considerable amount of reading devoted to Kindle. Like anything, once we get used to something, it is difficult to do without it. Having the convenience of Kindle at my disposal, now I can’t imagine being without it. I can’t imagine not having the freedom to have numerous reading choices even when I travel. Though I still continue to spend far more money than necessary on paper books, and still dreaming of creating my personal paper-book library, it seems that e-books are here to stay as much in my life as they are in the world. Particularly with my upcoming further education plans, I am thinking how much easier it would be this time around with a kindle, then in the pre-kindle days. 

Is your e-reader essential for you? How much do you use it? 

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