I downloaded Mockingjay at 12:23am the day of the release. In my pajamas.
If my friend Adam Heine (*title credit belongs to him) had a Nook, I could have lent him my copy, rather than having to wait weeks for it to ship to Thailand
And I lent my copy of The Forest of Hands and Teeth to my niece in Wisconsin, without having to pay shipping. We chatted about it on Facebook (also Mockingjay. All her friends were Team Gale, so I gave her Team Peeta support).
It’s small things like these, and big things like saving money on lower e-book prices, that make e-books full of win.
But it gets better.
A Wall Street Journal article reports 40% of e-reader owners read more than they did before owning an e-reader, and buy 3.3 times as many books.
Should you jump into the e-reader frenzy now? That’s a decision between you and your pocketbook, but you may want to wait, as prices and options change at a dizzying pace. I’ve been telling friends and family to hold off for the Holiday electronic gadget rush, when supppliers are likely to put forth their best offerings.
Nathan Bransford has a still timely primer on the e-revolution, if you’re timid about dipping your toes in the water.
But I was surprised how many people I know who have already jumped in with both feet: our soccer coach, who charges his Kindle off his laptop on long business trips; my niece in Wisconsin (above), where the whole family got their own Nooks; my hairdresser with a gorgeous iPad that makes me drool with envy (she uses it for school).
Of course, e-books and e-readers have problems. I occasionally forget to recharge, which is annoying when I want to read right now. I’m one of those people who lurks and peeks over your shoulder to see what you’re reading, which is really impossible with an e-reader without having the cops called on you.** And of course there’s compatibility issues with readers and formats, but I expect that to all settle out in the coming years.
**that never happened, I swear
While e-readers may be carrying us into the future, this doesn’t mean the e-pocalypse is near. In fact, I think e-readers will soon be considered an obvious (in retrospect) next step in the constant forward march of progress (if you don’t believe me, see this hidden link between e-readers and sheep).
And the really cool stuff is yet to come:
- E-books as a way to reach reluctant readers
- One E-Reader Per Child from the same folks that brought you One Laptop Per Child
- Flexible E-paper, a tripling in e-reader ownership in the next three years, enhanced e-books with more content for readers
- 25% of kids say they would read more if they had an e-reader
- Navigating e-readers may be just one more component of e-literacy
This future is so bright, I need sunglasses.