Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Plus Ca Change, Plus C'est...

 HANK PHILLIPPI RYAN: I remember the day TV changed. When I started as a reporter, in 1975, I saw the news director walk across the newsroom with a yellow plastic box.

"What's that?" I asked.
He held it up, holding it like a moon rock, or some other remarkable object. "It's a 'vid-e-o-cas-sette,' he said, pronouncing each syllable carefully. "Some people think vid-e-o-tape is  gonna replace film. But I say--it's a silly product. It'll never last."
I laughed, he laughed.

 You know the rest. We were wrong. And now--has the same thing happened in book world?
Take a look at that book in your hand. Will it someday be a relic? 

Today's blog all began when I was at the Derby Street Barnes & Noble (in Hingham, MA. A fabulous store--have you been there?)

While I was in the front of the store wooing readers to THE OTHER WOMAN, there was a salesguy in the Nook, um, nook, talking to readers about e-reading. I couldn't help but listen, reporter that I am.  He  was charming, and respectful, and funny, and knowledgeable. And he seemed to know everything.

So of course, dear Reds, I latched right onto him, figuring he knew the new secrets of the universe, and he would tell them to us!

 And now, here's David Factor. He has seen the change approaching, and embraced it--even though some of his customers have a bit of a hard time. He teaches classes in the intricacies of his ereader--and now tells all. (And I'll bet he'll be here to take your questions!)

 Inside the Nook
                    by David Factor

When I was growing up, things like ereaders were relegated to the realm of science fiction, as in an episode of Star Trek. We have now it seems, reached that stage of enlightenment. As a traditional reader for many years, I ducked it like a bill collector. As with anything, the proof is in the pudding. Try one and you may love it. A trip on the starship Enterprise is not even required.

This is not to say that you shouldn't stick with books. If books are your friends and the smell of paper pages intoxicates you, then you should not make the change. There are things that make these machines great that go beyond the odor of paper, however. Instant access to media and customized reading are two of the distinctive features that they offer. People also like the price of ebooks and the amount of space these devices save in their houses. One can also now get books from their public library right on their reader.

After working with these devices for years now, I' m still amazed at some of the questions people ask.

My favorite one is if the books are free. I often feel like saying that my company, in a brilliant plot to put themselves out of business, decided to not charge them for the ebook version.

I also love when people ask me if they're durable. I mean, compared to what? No. They are not waterproof and you should not use them in the bath. An active four year old, bless their soul, may indeed break it by smashing it on the ground.

People also want to know if their paper book libraries will automatically transfer to their device. No, there is not some way, through some bizarre osmosis, they will suddenly appear in your reader.

More than one person has asked me what would happen if they lost their place in an ebook. My response is always what if you lost your place in a real book?

People also are compelled to sometimes tell me that these devices are evil. A segment of the population seems to think that reading on a machine is unnatural and a violation of everything that is holy in the book world. I used to try to convince them that it is not a moral issue, but at this point, I find it best to not argue. Even after I say yes, books are better, they still look at me as the messenger of evil. This is no exaggeration. Despite this, I love these people as much as the digital reading heathens.

There are moments of joy as well. It's satisfying and reassuring when a 92 year old woman who doesn't own a computer embraces you because she can finally read again after her stroke. The class I teach is also extremely rewarding because of the looks of triumph people get when they learn how to use their device. Unfortunately, many bring me cookies, which of course I have to eat. After all, I can't be rude. Even if I am amongst the unholy!

HANK: Wonderful, Dave! And of course you'll eat the cookies! So what do you think, dear Reds? Are you in love with your e-reader? Was it love at first sight--or did it take a while? Do you sometimes buy a book-book AND the ebook like I do? Have you changed your opinon?

(Yesterday's winner of THE OTHER WOMAN is Diane Hale!  Send  me your address at hryan at whdh dot com! Who will win today? A version in the format of your choice to one lucky commenter.)


David Factor is a life long reader, long time bookstore employee, and converted digital reader. His interests include spending time with his family, his beloved New England Patriots, chinese food, and the music of Phish. Mr. Factor currently resides in Plainville, Massachusetts.


  1. Sorry. I have Kindle for PC and because I spend so much time on this computer, when I want to read I want a real book! Dee

  2. I haven't gone to an ereader yet, but I lust after one. I just can't figure out which one to splurge on! (Sorry, David.)

    But Hank - you never told us the secret of the universe yesterday! Do share.

  3. I have e-reader software on my Mac for when I need to read something that's only electronic, but I still like to read book-books.

    I know the change is happening... It scares me that nowhere is there an archive of actual newspapers any longer. I hope that doesn't happen to books.

  4. Oh David, so delightful to have you visiting!

    I'm like Dee, I'm on the computer absolutely all day so I don't want one in bed with me at night. We were on a cruise last month and I did notice a big uptick in e-readers. And usually they have a nice library of books that vacationers can exchange. the shelves were a little bare this time...

    My husband doesn't mind at all reading on our ipad. In fact, Hank, he's been slogging through THE STAND since you recommended it to him. (I only say slog because it's over 1000 pages--he loves it!)

  5. I was slow to embrace an ereader, but I am enjoying it. With a few taps on the screen I can borrow a book from my local library system. And I'm more likely to try something new now that I don't have to figure out where I'll put the book when I'm finished reading it. I do still buy by favorite authors in physical form, though.

  6. Good morning, David . . . thanks for a delightful column! I chuckled over the “are the books free” but was a bit surprised you didn’t mention the huge number of eBooks that Barnes and Noble offers for the Nook that are . . . well, free. My Nook is stuffed with them [and I love Free Fridays!]

    Thanks to our resident Princess, around here my eReader is known as Miss Nook. Over time, I’ve saved my pennies to upgrade and then to upgrade again and have never been disappointed; on the rare occasion that I’ve actually spoken with the folks in the “Argh . . . I need help” department of the company regarding some complexity I’ve overlooked or misunderstood, about the only comment of note that I’ve received is, “Don’t you know you can archive books?” [This because the gentleman was suggesting I reset Miss Nook to the factory settings to solve an issue with my book opening but the displayed page being blank. I, of course, was reluctant to do this because I would then have to reshelve the 1.500 or so volumes residing there. Fortunately for both of us, the issue resolved itself and I was saved that particular bit of aggravation.] During the recent hurricane, Miss Nook kept me reasonably sane by allowing me to read despite the loss of power [until the battery ran too low] . . . .

    I have never thought of Miss Nook as being Star Trek worthy, but I love that intellection . . . and I’d definitely be thrilled to take that trip on the Starship Enterprise!

    I haven’t found that Miss Nook saves any space around here, however . . . I still have [and love] gazillions of print books in my library and I don’t see that particular love affair diminishing any time soon. But I also love that my eReader gives me the ability to adjust the print size of the books it holds, which means I can automatically make the print size large enough for me to read easily. I also appreciate the ease with which my eReader allows me to take all those books with me when I travel, which means no more browsing through the newsstand at the airport hoping there will be a book there that I would like to read on the plane . . . .

    Hank, while most of my eBooks are not duplicates of books in my library, I do on occasion find books that I love so much that I have purchased both the print book and the eBook versions . . . and a very few for which I have print, eBook, and audio versions.

    1. You my friend, are almost as nook crazy as me.I love it!

  7. OH, I know--I have ereader ADD, a new syndrome that I wonder about.

    I start reading on my ereader--and then I think, I wonder if I really should be reading something else. So I click to a different book. Then I think--oh, maybe not. ANd I try something else. Then I think--maybe I need A NEW book! And I click to the bookstore. I have difficult time settling on an ebook--because it feels so easy to start another one!

    Is it just me?

    And in all the airports I've been in recently--EVERYONE has Nooks and Kindles. EVERYONE.

    1. This happens to metallic the time Hank. Sometimes I spend more time shopping than reading. Of course, I get paid to do this.

  8. Hi, David! Thanks for a visit from the Dark Side, apparently. I'm on my second Nook, a Tablet, and could be a Nook ambassador, I love the device that much.

    Because of pre-arthritic hands, reading on an e-reader has changed from pain to joy--no more gorilla grip needed. I'm about to get one for my 83-year old mother, too, since her eyesight is beginning to force her to give up her favorite pasttime. With the Nook she can instantly change the typeface size, colors, and brightness to suit herself. Since I already have some 300 e-books, she and I can share, via the Lend-Me program. This is a biggie for her, since she's on a fixed income, and for me, too. We are both readers of gluttonous proportions, and while we enjoy supporting all our favorite authors, it does get pricey, especially for her. Mother also does not have room for a lot of books in her tidy little home.

    Reading in bed used to be a big issue if there was someone else in the room. Now I can read in the dark, with the brightness turned way down, and the other person is not disturbed.

    Even more than the reading, though, is the fact that the Nook Color, Tablet, and HD versions are actual, full computers, albeit with virtual keyboards. I have a Netbook that I used to take on trips with me, but it barely leaves the house now. The Nook gives me access to all my favorite web sites, including JRW, my email, Facebook, stock market and weather updates, and even Google Maps (or Mapquest, or whatever). Watching Netflix movies is easy, as is listening to Pandora and doing a ton other things. Words with Friends, anyone?

    And unlike my laptop, the Nook turns on and off instantly, and links to whatever Wi-Fi system I want to use just as quickly. And it fits in almost all my bags; think of it, carrying hundreds of books in one small gadget. I am in love with this device, which is way less expensive than an iPad, but has almost every feature of that device. Yes, I bought it for the e-reading, but I love it for a million other reasons.

    Also, unlike some e-readers, the Nook does not insinuate ads everywhere. I like that the most.

    1. I' m so glad that this working so well for you! Great to hear from you! It sounds like you are using your device to its true potential:)

  9. I never thought I'd like an eReader; however, I was on a train a while ago and the woman opposite me was reading a book on a tablet and I thought how great that was for traveling. When I got my iPhone, I downloaded some books and, well, I was hooked. Granted, reading the text on the phone is tough on these old eyes.

    I still haven't been able to spring for an iPad but I did get a tablet and now reading an eBook is somewhat easier on the eyes.

    I love the idea of the instant dictionary and the ability to search for specific words.

    That being said, I really enjoy audiobooks because they allow me to multi-task. I usually read (listen) while I knit. And sometimes there are little extras at the end, like the interview at the end of the audioversion of THE OTHER WOMAN.

    But, above all, holding a book is special. Nothing can take that away.

    My biggest concern has been that the authors lose out if we, the readers, don't buy the physical book. I hope you benefit from the book in whatever medium it's delivered.

  10. Yes! Free Fridays are the best. I've found several new-to-me authors that way.

    I meant to also address the books AND ebooks thing: some books are destined to be read and discarded, but I have some favorite authors whose physical books I collect, so they (most of you, dear JRWs) are added to my bulging shelves, and sometimes also to the Nook.

    What is really fun about the Nook is the number of kinds of electronic formats it can handle, more than any other device. (The Kindle used to be limited to whatever format Amazon uses. I don't know if that has changed or not.) I've downloaded a ton of free classics from a couple of sites, and am rereading books by Jane Austen, Shakespeare, and others no longer bound by copyright laws.

  11. I don't have an ereader, but I have the kindle app for my iPod. (The Nook app and I didn't get along...sorry, David!)

    Although I love holding a "real" book, sometimes I just have to have the instant gratification of starting a new book Right Now!

  12. I had a Nook (until I left it on top of the car and drove off, sigh) and replaced it with a Nexus 7 tablet.

    On the tablet I have Nook and Kindle apps and am not limited by what either B&N or Amazon thinks I should be able to do with the operating system or which apps I can download.

    I love the feel of physical books, but I have to admit that I've quickly adapted to the ease of carrying only one "book" on trips, and that "book" also gets my magazines while I'm away, and allows me to get email, and ...

    Although I suspect David and B&N might disagree, I think dedicated readers will rapidly be replaced by more flexible tablets. Either way, the percentage of reading done electronically will continue to increase at the expense of paper.

    ~ Jim

  13. Hank:
    Every Friday, Barnes and Noble offers a free book [occasionally two free books] to Nook readers. They also have a gazillion books that are free, so with just a bit of browsing you can fill your eReader with all sorts of wonderful books . . . and if occasionally I find I thoroughly dislike an eBook I've found on the booklist, it's never a big deal: I simply delete the book from my library and I'm not "out" anything because it was free in the first place . . . .

  14. I was very skeptical of e-book readers before I held one. Once I read my first book on there, I was hooked. I do still buy many books in paper version (hardbacks mostly for author signing), but there is something about the ease of the reader that makes it a joy.

    I find that I read faster on the reader as well. This is likely because I can adjust the font size to my desire at the moment and read longer.

    The downside of it all is that I have no self-control, so when I see a book I want to read, if I can download it immediately, I will and do. ;-)

    There are worse problems to have.

  15. The minute the first Kindle was introduced, I had one. But it hasn't stopped my real-book-buying habit. I find that I now buy printed books when I know I'll want to share them or when I'm getting friends to sign them. Of course, on occasion this leads to buying the e-version and then buying the paper version because I have to share it with someone. Better for the author, I guess.

    David, I bet the stories you could tell are hilarious. Does anyone ask if radiation from the device will cause cancer?

    1. Actually yes Tammy. If this was true, I would be even balder than I am now.

  16. We have had a subscription to The New Yorker for 20 years, and because it goes first to my husband's office, I rarely get to read it until a couple days after it arrives. However, since I signed up to receive the magazine electronically, as well, I now have read pretty much the entire magazine on my Nook before it ever hits the mailbox.

    It does take longer to download a content- and graphics-rich magazine than most books, though. Books download in an incredible two or three seconds.

    When I read paper books now I find myself missing the ability to look up unfamiliar words, or to translate foreign phrases.

  17. I love my eReader and I still love books and have never understood why I can't love both.

    There are some author's books I want in on my shelves - first edition, signed. There are others that I just want to read for the enjoyment of reading.

    I'm guessing when I'm moved into the old folks' home I won't be able to bring my whole library of "real" books, but I am hoping to be able to bring that library with me on my eReader.

  18. Yes, I'm very fond of my ereader. Jonathan is, too.

    DO we have aname yet for the period of time on an airplane where you can;t use your ereader?

    I call it: crossword puzzle time.

    And--seriously!--I have now noticed the puzzle in the airplane magazine in my seat pouch is OFTEN worked on these days--MUCH more often than in the past. My theory--it's ereader readers, looking for some way to fill the e-gap.

    And ideas?

  19. The ringer on my cell phone is the 'Communicator' sound from THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E. Back in the day, I clearly remember my father saying during one episode, "A thing you can carry in your pocket? You can reach anyone in the world? They can reach you? Aw, TV Secret Agent BULLSHI*!"

    Yep, you called that one, Dad....:)

    I remember when VHS was a *wonder*. Then came DVDs. I've been resisting upgrading to Blu-Ray (Dearlord, please don't make me re-do my video collection a THIRD time!) but between the Bond Collection, the Universal Monsters, and the Hammer Studios Movies on Blu-Ray, I fear the decision is being made for me....

  20. I don't have an e-reader. I do have the Kindle app for my laptop and have downloaded books with that and read some. In fact, when I'd read the earlier books and desperately wanted to read Drive Time after stores had closed, I downloaded it and read it on my laptop--and stayed up WAY too late.

    I spend all day on the computer usually, however, and when I get a chance to read, I'd rather have a hardcover or paperback book. I don't find the actual process of reading as much fun when it's electronic as I do when it's in a physical book. Still, when I travel, I see folks reading on e-readers, and I can see what a great idea they are for travel. Also, my house is filled to bursting with actual, tangible books. There's just no more room.

    I'm resigned to one day owning an e-reader of some kind. Now, I'm considering whether I want a Nook or a tablet. My son has a Nook and swears by it. And I'd still have the Kindle app for anything that's available only in that form. But if I'm going to put out that much money, I want something that can multi-task.

    But I think I will always want some books in physical format. I don't think I can give up the pleasure of reading real books.

  21. Maybe I'm a reading opportunist because I like both books and e-books. However, when going on a trip, I no longer want to pack or carry a book. I go with whatever's most convenient.

  22. I tried the Kindle app for PC once, but just couldn't sit at the computer for long enough to read comfortably. I'm at the computer too much of the day anyway! On the one hand, I can understand how an e-reader could be easier when traveling, but I would be constantly worrying about leaving it somewhere. A paperback book can be replaced for a few dollars. You can't say that about an e-reader!

  23. I'd been planning to buy a Nook next year, before our trip to India, and now I'm even more convinced. I'll still have to pack a paper book or magazine -- in case someone else has already done the x-word puzzle -- but just one!

  24. David says hi--he's doing Daddy Day Care right now..and will be here a bit later!

    Yeah, I try to see if I can do the WHOLE crossword puzzle between take of and Okay-to-use-equipement time.

    Our house is FULL of books...we can;t resist! But--for example--11/22/63. We had it in book-book and eversion..and then got ANOTHER eversion so J could read it the same time I did--on vacation.

    SO complicated...

    1. You folks could link your devices to the same accounts and share them that way. Although the way you did it is effective nonetheless.

  25. Before I bought my first Nook Color I tried to read books on my laptop, via the Kindle app. It's a pain in the neck. The laptop doesn't balance as well in one's lap, and it can be too hot, as well. The Nook is more like holding a very slim book, folded back, than it is reading on a computer.

    I also like the touchscreen more than using buttons or a mouse. The lightest possible touch "turns" the page.

    The Nook also comes loaded with crossword puzzle, Sudoku, and solitaire apps.

    Magazines also work in the plane during "crossword puzzle" time.

  26. Count me in the "skeptical but converted" group. When Amazon released the Kindle, I thought, "No way this will replace books."

    I have an iPhone, so I have the Kindle app, plus iBooks. I love the fact that I can carry a dozen titles in my jacket pocket - and if I run out, I can buy another with a click. No more reading through outdated magazines at the doctor's office, no more sitting idly in a traffic jam wanting to be busy, no more packing five books on vacation only to go through them by day 4 and be without reading material.

    This is not to say I have given up print books. My house is stuffed with them. So stuffed that I am forced to be incredibly selective. Like others, I buy books (mostly) when I can have them signed - usually a nice hardcover or trade paperback that will look nice on a shelf. And I am a bathtub reader, so yeah, you do need something that is a little more water-friendly (although that is limited - have you seen what happens to a book when you drop it in the water?).

    And yes, I do sometimes buy both ebook and print. THE OTHER WOMAN was one of them - because how could I not have a signed copy? I lust after ebook versions of the Harry Potter series because I love it so. I also have ebook versions of Rick Riordan's OLYMPIAN series and my son has the print versions (because the school won't allow ereaders).

    My daughter has a Nook Color that she adores. She can watch Netflix movies, get email, and Facebook on it too. If I were buying for me, I'd get an iPad or a Nook Tablet because of the multi-function - and I've recommended that my father get one for travel.

    And I absolutely adore the comment about the woman who can read again after her stroke. I think people who think ereaders are "evil" too often overlook that they have brought the joy of reading back to a segment of the population who can't see or hold physical books because of health issues (poor eyesight, arthritis, etc.).

  27. Hank, your house sounds like ours. And your e-book reading habit sounds like Ben's with physical books. He dips into this one, then that one, then oh! another. Since he's been reading mysteries by my friends, though, he's been sucked into reading straight through--Hallie's, yours, Julia's, and now he's reading Debs' NO MARK UPON HER. Rave reviews from someone who reads mostly lit fiction (and publishes it) for all.

  28. I went iPad. Kindle, Nook, Book-A-Million, iBooks. Can read anything!

  29. Yeah, karen, I agree..reading on a laptop is not fun.

    And I'm not hot about reading on the iphone, either.

    But my mother was SO thrilled with the ability to change the font size! Wonder what that's doing to the large-print publishers...anyone know?

  30. First, thank you Hank for my promised book. I'm sooo looking forward to reading it.

    Second, thanks to our guest, David. I'm not surprised at the strange questions you've gotten. I'm retired now, but when I was a practicing nurse, I learned to not be amazed at some of the things I had to educate my patients about. (Although it did make for interesting stories among my colleagues.)

    I love my ebook, but like so many others have mentioned, I can't give up my "real" books. If I'm reading in the spa, the worst that can happen from a sudden wind gust is replacing a much cheaper paper book. The best part of an ebook is that it takes up so much less space in my purse. Makes it great for public waits--doctor's office, oil change, etc.

    I love the idea of the tablets, but some of us live in the boondocks, with marginal access to Wi-Fi, as well as the additional cost of connection capability. So my downloads are done via home PC.

    We live in an amazing time when we can download books and magazines, change font size to accommodate our aging eyes, and develop ebook ADD, as if I needed any help with *that* particular congenital affliction.

  31. David, you are too funny! Love your customers questions--and yes, I can believe them.

    My mantra is: I just want people to read.

    I don't care if they do on papyrus, paper, or a tablet. And I think ereaders must be a great way to get younger readers hooked on book dope:-) David, do you find that with your customers?

    And I've never seen why one shouldn't have print books along with digital books.

    My parents were manufacturers in the theater concession business, and I remember the cries of doom when movies came out on VHS. "It's the end of the theater business!!! No one will go to the movies and buy popcorn anymore!!!" But they did, and I think people will continue to buy print books, although perhaps more selectively.

    Have I taken the plunge myself? Not yet, but intend to by the end of the year. I want to be able to use both Nook and Kindle software, and don't really want an iPad. I've been reading really good reviews of the Nexus 7. James, do you like yours?

    1. Young people are absolutely intrigued by e readers Deb. These machines can be extremely useful to parents with kids of all abilities, ages,and interests. Of course being able to stream Barney at the doctor while my two year old gets a shot doesn't hurt either

  32. If anybody would like some information about the future of reading they should read Michio Kaku's book The Physics of the Future. Dr.Kaku theorizes that within 100 years many objects will will have computer chips inside them, including glasses and our actual brains. The books we read, the movies we watch and the music we hear could al be simply networked into our minds directly. At the very least, tablets might also be engrained into our clothing or physical bodies. The majority of people may have trouble believing this. All I can say is thatits a brave new world and anything is possible. And yes James, readers probably will go the way of the dodo

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  34. I have the Kindle Keyboard and I thank God that I got over my prejudice against anything that did not "feel" like a book...the Kindle makes my life far less painful than it was pre Kindle. A combination of arthritis/tendinitis/carpal tunnel/disk problems made reading more and more difficult for me. And then there were the books printed in teeny little fonts. My poor eyes!

    I have learned that just like with people, it is not the packaging that matters; it's what is inside that counts. A few minutes into whatever I am reading,and I can't tell if it's a book or a magazine or a newspaper or an eReader - I am totally engrossed in the story!

    I still do purchase "real" books, but only if they are easy to hold and if my eyes can handle the font size. The advent of the eReader has restored my pleasure in reading and I thank God for the technology that made that possible!

  35. I am glad that everyone enjoyed my blog. The silly questions from customers may be my favorite part of the day too, as they add some color to my day. And yes, I love all, including kindle users. It' s great to hear all your anecdotes also so keep them coming, fellow futurists...ha ha

  36. Hi,
    been trying and trying to be able to get email posts from Jungle Red Writers -- I signed up a long time ago for this -- but don't get the posts. When I try to re-sign up, it says that I'm already signed up!
    please help!
    Sandy Gardner

  37. I couldn't agree more with you Mary Sutton.

  38. My Kindle was a surprise gift from an author friend, and while I still do most of my reading in real books, the Kindle is wonderful for out-and-about reading. It's lighter than most books, and I have a selection of material to match to mood and environment. As the TBR mountain grows, though, I know I'll never be caught up -- NEVER!

  39. Diane, you can also hook up the Nook (and I assume the Kindle, as well) to your home PC to load books onto it.

    Dave, just curious, how hard is it to get a job selling and demonstrating the Nook? Do they hire separate people for the Nook department, or do they just place people there from the rest of the staff? I always wondered if they were specially trained, assuming they were.

  40. I am mostly self trained buts its not rocket science.Anybody can learn the technicality of things, but can you sell and deal with customers not just adequately, but exemplary. Most people I work with now own one so at least know enough.

  41. Dave, what are some of the things people don't know about ereaders?

  42. Mostly just how versatile they are now Hank. I actually watch movies on mine just as much as I read. Mine has almost fully replaced my laptop now as my preferred choice for anything I do in cyberspace. I remember when I used to buy three newspapers a day. Now its all there at a push of a button, whether you are in Boston or Austin.

  43. I'm an equal opportunity reader, print, Kindle and I've even gotten used to reading on my mini. But a printed book never runs out of battery.

    I've definitely purchased books in both formats. A couple of times I was out of town and forgot (the book) or didn't think I'd have a lot of time to read. So cool to be able to push a button and have the book appear. that said, I did just order three new bookcases...

  44. Another misconception is that one will somehow break their device by pressing the wrong button. I always tell people to play, because there's no button you can touch that can permanently break it.

  45. I confess to a love/hate relationship with e-readers. To be fair, I have only read books on an iPad, an iPhone, and an Apple computer. Notice a trend? They all have computer lighting.

    I love that, although I live in rural Indiana with no stand-along bookstore in the entire county, I can read any e-book I want within seconds. Plus, my e-book is on my phone so I'm never without a book, even if I forgot to stick one in my purse as usual. Saving bookshelf space is a huge advantage.

    However, I love to read until I doze off to sleep and that glo-light feeling doesn't do it for me. And I can't easily loan someone an e-book to read, nor can I sell a book I'm finished with (although print books resell for fractions of pennies). Finally, reading in the bathtub with an e-reader is never totally relaxing--but I do it!

    I'd love to win The Other Woman, in print, please...to see Hank's lovely signature in ink!!

  46. Dave, you're amazing! Thank you!

    And I must say, I ALWAYS worry that there's something I'll do that will blow the whole thing up.

    And Cathy, I'm from Indiana! Where do you live?

  47. ANd Roberta, so happy John loves The Stand! It's so gratifying when someone agrees with a recommendation..it's like the scary moment after you put the quarter in the jukebox, and everyone hears what you chose..

  48. Hi. My name is Rhonda, and I have e-reader ADD.

    My preferred method of consumption is through B&N Nook, although my Droid phone has both the Nook and Kindle apps because some folks publish Kindle-only or go with Kindle Select.

    May I add that I don't like reading on my phone, so my Kindle editions basically languish unfinished. (David, you'll appreciate that. ;) )

    I also buy BOTH ebooks and paper books if I'm studying a novel's construction OR if I need the book for research by my desk OR if I want an author to sign my copy. I do my initial reading on the ebook, though.

    If I can get access power for a charge during the day during blackouts, I can read the ebook at night, a statement I can't make about paper books.

    Also, I'm less likely to add an appearance on an episode of HOARDERS to my author platform now that stacks of books aren't growing so fast in our home.

  49. My earlier response was written on my lunch break and I ran out of time to say everything that I wanted to say:
    I use my Kindle to get on line (I currently have no Internet access at home) so all of my web surfing and JRW reading/responding, all of my non-work mail, and many other tasks are done on the Kindle. Many apps are extremely inexpensive. The one I find most helpful is a note-taking app. I use it to make note of questions I want to ask at Dr appointments. One of my doctors even pulled the Kindle out of a side pocket in my purse and told me "here; write these instructions down in your Kindly thing."

    My very tiny condo is already overflowing with books. Just this morning when I was brushing my teeth (trying to multi-task:-) I was trying to figure out how to store my current books. They are spilling out of bookcases, piled up on end tables, on top of and inside of my coffee table. At this point I don't have any books I want to give away. I did that a few years ago, donating many boxes of books to a library sale -but still have so many that nobody would ever guess that I got rid of anything. There are numerous boxes of books in my basement, too, and I fear that Hurricane Sandy has damaged most of them. I don't have the heart to look just yet.

    Thanks to all the freebies available for the Kindle, I have many of the old classics on Kindle. Among them are books like Pride and Prejudice, books by other long-deceased authors, favorite childhood books like Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland.

    You know how there will often be free older books by current authors when they have new books coming out? That is how I have discovered authors who are new to me. I have gone on to purchase other books that they've written.

    In the year and a half that I've had the Kindle, I have purchased more books than I would have otherwise, because I don't need to worry about where to store them. I still purchase print books...if I can read the print, if holding them does not cause pain, and if they are written by JRW authors and readers! It has been easier for me to pack for vacation...one less piece of luggage, because I used to pack one bag with nothing but books, and I still, as always, purchase at least one print book while on vacation. I can tell you where every bookstore in town is at my favorite vacation spot!

    David, before I purchased the Kindle, I investigated iPad, Nook, and Kindle devices. My favorite was the Nook but I could not afford it; that's the only reason I did not buy it. The clerk in the store was extremely helpful and friendly and I felt really bad that I could not buy one!

    1. We still love ya Deb and I am happy you are enjoying your kindle!

  50. II have an iPad, the orininal nook, the nook colr and the kindlefire. I love them all but the kindle app and the nook app on the iPad is mighty fine. I have some books in my room that are calling out to me and I wait until I am outoors to read them . I had my iPad out the other day and a man said "Oh, you have one of this" in an envious tone. I think in the future everyone will have one of these.

  51. My mom bought me a Nook when I had cancer...and it was the best thing for me. I wouldn't have had the strength to hold a book. Now I use my Nook when my carpal tunnel acts up...which was aggravated by the chemo treatments.

    I can't see books just going away, though. Books have too much history.

    1. Hope you are doing well and so glad your device has been so helpful in the midst of troubling times!

  52. Can't afford an e-reader so I know books won't go the way of the dodo. Low-income people and kids can't afford them. Books will be needed at book signings, too, otherwise authors would have to sign the back of postcards that feature the book cover. Some e-readers don't display the cover art, right?

    I don't even own a computer (I'm at the library now) so only printed books for me. I have books all over my bedroom, living room, and in the garage I have bookcases, boxes, and tubs of books.

    I can do that A.D.D. thing with printed books and wander from one to another, although I do try to concentrate on one or two at a time. It's so tempting to start a new book that just arrived and at least read a few pages.

    If I got an e-reader, I'd probably want the PaperWhite Kindle with 3G. A bright, white surface would be best for reading. I wear glasses. I would love to be able to zoom up the print. A lot of books have small print, including the Berkley Prime Crime books. I like a lot of their books.

    Speaking of free books, a lot of giveaways are for e-books, which isn't good for me. Sometimes they don't even specify which version you'll win (print or e-copy).

    There was a discussion thread on Amazon about people leaving their Kindles in airports and how anyone else could take it and use it. If found, though, Amazon could be notified and trace the Kindle through its serial number and get it back to its owner.

    I don't travel so if I had a Kindle I'd use it at home. I used to travel by Greyhound bus but I listened to music or a book-on-tape. I never read much on vacation; I was too busy seeing the sites and planning what to do!

    Did they ever announce the winner of the Tasha Alexander book or Carolyn Hart book? If it was me, let me know. It's not always easy to find the winners on this site.

    How long before the airplane takes off are you grounded from using electronics? I've never flown.

    I still use my V.H.S. tapes, but I do watch D.V.D.'s.

  53. E-books are probably one of the best ever inventions for authors' backlist titles. It helps those of us who are obsessive about reading every title in the series, in order, to make sure we have every one of them.

  54. I received a Nook Color as a birthday gift this year. I've enjoyed being able to read authors' backlists that are being released in digital format. It's a great space saver and wonderful for traveling. I still prefer print over digital. I find it frustrating when books are available only in Kindle format.

    I have some books in print, digital and audio format.

  55. Racing in after giving a speech tonight=luckily we left way early--the one hour drive to the Cape took TWO AND A HALF hours...ah. We arrived in time and it was wonderful, but what a frustrating time! We wnt even tlak about how peope drive in the rain. But the sppec was lovely, and we are happy to be home.

    Anyway--let's hear it for AMAZING DAVE! Thank you so much..what a memorable day here on Jungle Red.

    The winner of THE OTHER WOMAN is Cathy SHouse! (whoa--the random winner picker stikes agian..)

    Michelle F, it's about fifteen minutes after takeoff til you can use your device agan--right?

    1. I had a fantastic time hearing everyone's insights

  56. Long time rabid reader. After a brief adjustment, I love, love my nook. For many reasons. How easy it is to get the next book in a series at 2 AM, for example. How light and easy to prop it up to read. Being able to change font size. How many books I can "carry."

  57. Dave, you ROCK! See you soon..and love to all..

    1. Big thanks to you Hank! The jungle reds are awesome!

  58. At the recent Crime Bake conference no one, not one single buyer, asked an author to sign their e- reader.
    Seriously, as the owner of several e- readers I use them for author's back issues, to discover lesser known authors and for convenience on long trips.
    When I'm fortunate enough to meet the author, I buy their book, ask them kindly to personalize them with a signature and I never part with the book.
    I now buy and read more books on an e-reader, mainly through my uncontrolled impulse buying when I read an interesting review.