After getting back into reading last year, I never thought that I would ever own an e-reader. I love the feel of having a physical book in my hands. But after the bookshelves in my bedroom were literally overflowing, I decided to look into possibly getting one. I basically used the fact that my birthday was only a few weeks away as my excuse to do a bit of research. And since I don't usually ask for anything for my birthday (it being in early February will do that), I thought that this could be the perfect gift and one that I could split with my parents, when it came to paying for it. After doing quite a bit of research, I ultimately chose the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite 2019 and I can't believe that it took me so long to discover the joy and real benefits of using an e-reader.
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It has completely transformed the way in which I read for the better. I'm also now getting through more books than ever.
So if you're thinking of getting one yourself, here's why I went for the Kindle Paperwhite over the standard Kindle and why I love it so;
Which e-reader is right for you?
When I was weighing up my options with my parents, my Dad was shocked at the price of e-readers. Yes, you can get a tablet (such as the Amazon Fire 7) for under £50. But I knew that I would get distracted each and every time a new app notification popped up. Or I'd find myself using it as a bigger version of my phone (being on Instagram, etc.), instead of reading.
This is why it had to be an e-reader. But which one was right for me? I decided to make a table of the pros and cons of some of the biggest e-readers available on the market right now. And here it is;
|Price||Screen Size||Screen Resolution||Special Features|
|Kindle||£69.99||15cm||167ppi||Available in white|
Available in Twilight Blue
|Kobo Clara||£109.99||15cm||300ppi||Capability to borrow books from local libraries|
|Tablet (Amazon Fire 7)||£49.99||17.8cm||171ppi||Has all the benefits of a tablet (camera, accessories compatible, MicroSD slot, etc.)|
BEST ALL ROUNDER: The Kindle Paperwhite
One thing that is worth mentioning though, Amazon's Kindles and Fire tablets come with 'special offers'. These are actually adverts that appear when the Kindle is not in use. You can remove them or buy one without for an extra £10.
I decided it was worth it to buy the £10 more expensive version solely because these 'special offers' can drain the battery. And if I was investing in something that I hoped I would use every day for many years, it made sense to pay the small amount to have it work as I'd like it to.
So here's what I've taken away from using my Kindle Paperwhite ever since;
I'm able to read any time of day, anywhere
During the Winter most of the day it's pretty dull but when I did have time to read in the evenings, it was pitch black. It isn't always convenient or fair in a house I share with the rest of my family to put a big lamp or light on. So having a screen that is backlit, means I can read in bed, when it's dark and in any room of the house. And obviously, anywhere I go to be honest.
It's incredibly light and is great for travel, commuting or taking with you day to day. I would usually only read hardback books at home just because they were too heavy to tote around with me. I also used to take several books on holiday with me. Whereas now, I will only need one small device, which can hold hundreds of books. Isn't it the worst when you take a book on holiday and you don't even like it but have to keep reading as it's all you have?! I won't have that situation arise again now.
I was a little bit shocked at how good the battery life is. Amazon claim it can last several weeks and I probably only charge it once a fortnight, if that. And even then it's maybe down to 40%, not totally out. And that's with me reading for at least an hour every day/night. I also have it connected to WiFi at all times, which will obviously use up battery quicker.
But you could easily take this on holiday with you and not need to worry about charging it every evening like you would a tablet or phone. Or even once during your trip.
My eyes & joints feel less strain
My eyes can get tired if I stare at my phone or a tablet for a considerable length of time. The Kindle Paperwhite screen, on the other hand, mimics a real book, whilst also having a lit screen. I don't feel the same kind of tiredness even after a few hours reading my Kindle.
I also have an issue with my joints, so if I'm holding a hardback book open for longer than about 30 minutes my wrists and fingers ache. I've sadly had to wait on many books coming out in paperback solely because of this issue. But now I can easily read them on my Kindle and all I have to do is tap to turn the pages.
I'd heard of NetGalley, as someone who reviews books online, both on here/my socials and Goodreads. But discovering and using NetGalley has easily been the biggest gamechanger for me when it comes to reading.
I now have access to advanced reader copies (ARCs) of books weeks or months before they are released. This saves me money in the long run, means I can keep up with new and exciting books and can share more reviews than ever. I cannot recommend it highly enough!
After getting back into reading I was starting to spend a silly amount of money on buying new books each month. And that was even with taking into consideration the 2 for £8 deal that most supermarkets run on their paperbacks. It would soon add up; £10-15 here on a hardback, £7.99 on a book from Waterstones, several 2 for £8 books.
Whereas each week, or even day, there are lots of great books at 99p! I've seen The Whisper Man (which I bought in the 2 for £8 deal), Lock Every Door (my favourite book of 2019), The Flat Share, plus lots of chart and bestselling books, all for 99p.
Of course, you have to invest in a Kindle to begin with but if you buy a lot of books, it makes total sense to use an e-reader. You can even sign up to Kindle Unlimited. If you spend more than the £7.99 a month on buying books, the subscription of the same price allows you to access thousands of books and audiobooks.
I honestly don't think I could go back to solely reading physical books. That's not to say that I don't read them now that I have my Kindle (I'm definitely making my way through my physical bookshelf too).
Do you have an e-reader? If so, what do you love about yours? Or have you been thinking about buying one?