As a general rule, I don’t like things that are too new or different.
I’m not sure if this is because my family was the one who waited until cassette tapes were no longer in circulation to get a DVD player, but sometimes I find myself overcome with a touch of that irritating take-me-back-to-the-good-old-days-when-kids-were-happy-to-play-with-a-doll-made-from-a-corn-cobb disdain for electronics (the internet and my iPhone will forever be exempt from this).
After years of resisting, my lovely mother offered to buy me one, and – oh my, you guys – has anyone else got a Kindle? Am I late to the party? What a marvel of modern science.
The Kindle has changed my life in a way that raw food, compression socks and L. Ron Hubbard are yet to do.
Recent convert that I am, I believe I have every right to jump on my soapbox and PREACH it, y’all! I want everyone to open themselves up to the happiness I was shirking for so long. Let me share this gift!
Because truly. The Kindle makes things better. And not just for your back, either, even though it is far more ergonomic to carry an e-reader in your handbag than an IRL copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
To all you haters. I know what you are thinking, for I was once one of you:
The Kindle is murdering the bookshelf.
Of course – *knowing wink* – I know what you really mean:
My Saturday night conquests won’t be able to see how cultured and literary and philosophical and so bloody thoughtful yet cool I am. How else can I casually mention Proust and Kerouac in the same sentence? And also no-one can marvel at a hip-to-the-now rainbow bookshelf if my library is floating in the freaking cloud, can they?
Well hear me out, snobs. This won’t affect your ‘cool’ factor. Rather, it will enhance it.
You can still express your literary tastes by displaying novels that are higher of brow than a surprised drag queen.
You can still load your coffee tables with arty coffee table art books on coffee art.
You can still hit up all the junk sales and book fairs you want, in search of vintage classics that double as a home for miscellaneous mites, and wouldn’t be too out of place at an archeological dig.
And you can still definitely, DEFINITELY find a place for anything ‘ironic’.
- quirky photo-books (Toilets of the world; Church signs across America).
- Blast-from-the-past children’s books (Enid Blighton; Babysitters Club).
- Retro lifestyle guides that make us proud of how far we’ve come, perhaps via thinly-veiled racism (make your own golliwog!), or misguided advice (let out a gallon of blood to ease hysteria!).
The Kindle is fiiiiine with all that.
The Kindle just wants you to be happy, which everyone knows can be bought with cool stuff. Because everyone knows “Look at all your cool stuff” is just a synonym for “Wow you’re so much better than me.”
The Kindle allows you to carefully curate your physical bookshelf, while still giving you permission to read whatever-the-hell crap you want from your electronic bookshelf.
Just as no-one need know that your svelte hourglass figure is concealing a seal-farm’s worth of blubber packed into a pair of too-small Spanx, with the Kindle as your ally, no-one needs to know that – behind the scenes – you’re not really reading critically acclaimed literature. Not exclusively.
Now you don’t have to smuggle Twilight to work and read it in the toilet, while conspicuously leaving a copy of Anna Karenina poking out of your bag.
You can read 50 Shade of Grey on the train, without actually being one of those people who actually reads 50 Shades of Grey.
You can read all the Marion Keyes you want on holiday, with the tampon-ad confidence of someone who knows that (a) no one can see what’s really going on down there, and (b) you can travel light.
And the best part is, there is so so so so oh so very much crap available to you that is, like the leftover dregs of other people’s pints at the pub, both wonderfully and disgustingly free.
Free e-Books seem to primarily fall into the following genres:
- How-to guides,
- Miscellaneous, and
Of course, this pictorial is just scratching the surface. Think how far we could go with Historical Romance … Dinosaur Love? Cave mummies? Mummy mummies?
Sometimes these genres get a little incestuous, and we might find a Christian mummy diary. Actually often that happens. Speaking of, anyone seen this marvelous specimen of fan fiction yet? (I call hoax …)
Anyway. To help you get to know your new Kindle-pod, I’m going to take you through the genres and from time to time, I will share my reviews/synopses/recommendation of some of the trash I have consumed via Kindle.
But not right now, because I just noticed there’s a new chapter (yeah, totes troll town).
That wasn’t a deliberate teaser either. I told you I could be non-committal.