Many months ago I bought my wife a first-generation Kindle ereader and gave it to her for a present, thinking that she would like it better than the nice Singer sewing machine I gave her decades ago and which still resides in pristine splendor in the downstairs bedroom just in case a ripped seam needs stitched. My wife read one book on the Kindle, grousing about the Kindle as she went along, and put it aside. I didn't pay any attention to it, even though first adopters always pay through the nose for new technology and then I totally forgot about it. My wife preferred turning pages and seeing rows and rows of books she had finished reading in the book shelves.
Lately, I dug out the Kindle, turned it on, and discovered, miracle of miracles, there are tons and libraries and more tons of free books for Kindle. After paying several hundred dollars for the Kindle, I wasn't too excited about paying $9.99 for most new titles, especially those currently-popular authors whose breathless prose shows up on the Costco paperback table in a few months for $4.38 or thereabouts. But when I discovered that Amazon and some publishers put some new titles on as freebies, some times for a few hours, some times for a few days before cranking up the price to $9.99, I was hooked. Plus several ebooks exist that tell you how to find free stuff, not just from Amazon, but from everywhere else as well. I haven't done so yet, but when you can get the complete works of various classical authors for one buck, you definitely save hauling 75 pounds of books around in your backpack.
So I downloaded over three dozen freebies, which if I would have paid for them, would have cost me nearly $400. Being an economist, I prefer a marginal cost of zero or even one cent to a marginal cost of $9.99. In this way, I can pay for my Kindle and not feel like I stupidly got myself ripped off. Of course, the new generation of Kindles is a refined and improved generation, but mine works fine for now and, besides, I have to "pay for it." So far I have whizzed through four espionage novels. I watch daily with an eagle eye to see which new titles Amazon will dish out on the freebie list. I find the Kindle extremely easy to read after I took the book cover off and quit fighting it. And I find I can read infinitely more quickly by not fussing around with pages. Of course, I will still buy books that I truly want to mark up, write in, annotate, and leave on my bookshelves to impress people with how erudite I am or to irritate them if they think my choices are way, way, too liberal. But I may get to where I haul only a handful of books back and forth between Salt Lake City and St. George UT, and that would be a blessing. Got to check and see if any new freebies worth downloading today and finish reading Conspiracy in Kiev after reading Midnight in Madrid.