On a bit of a whim 2 weeks ago I purchased a new Kindle Paperwhite. I don’t have Prime, but apparently because it’s an Amazon device (I assume), they gave me free “Prime Now” delivery and had it delivered later that afternoon for no extra cost. Honestly — that was pretty cool! And I would definitely impulse purchase more things I don’t need if I had regular access to Prime, so it confirms my decision not to subscribe to Prime. (I unsubscribed years ago when I realized I was impulse shopping a lot on Amazon just because I “might” need something but truly, I rarely did)

Anyway. I like that this Kindle is splash-proof so I have been taking it to read in the hot tub at my rec center. I also do really like the subtle backlighting that makes it a tiny bit easier to read in bed with the lights down low. And finally, on my quest for USB-C to rule it all, I appreciate that I already have several places I can charge it. (though with the e-ink display, I rarely need to)

But the biggest win has been the library integration. I love my local library but their collection is pretty small, but online they have a huge selection of books. What’s more — in Colorado — you can have library cards from several library districts through a reciprocity program. So now I have three library cards, and each one has a very different selection of books. I added these cards to Libby and now I have a really wide selection of free e-books I can read any time.

Finally, I decided to purchase the Kindle version of the NLT Study Bible. I wasn’t sure at first, but they make very effective use of hyperlinks. It’s super easy on the touch screen to click a note, hop over to the study section, read the study notes for a bit, then click the “back to location XYZ” to go right back to the text. Honestly, it works WAY better than I expected, and because it’s right there next to my other books, I have been back to reading scripture more consistently then ever in recent times.

I would say the main thing I don’t like about the Kindle are the hidden elements on the touch screen. I have slowly been learning what gestures and sections of the screen to click to do what I want but this Apple-ification of everything where you don’t know exactly where to touch to do what you want is really grating. It’s feels worse on the e-ink display because there’s an inherent delay before whatever gesture you’ve done responds.

Other than that though — really, really love this device. It’s great to have a device that feels like paper to my eyes, still has instant access to a mountain of books for free through the library, and does not tempt me to go look at the web or Instagram. I’ve already read four books on it and I’ve only had it two weeks. No doubt the novelty will wear off and I won’t keep reading at this pace — but I am sure this will help me stay in book reading mode more than my iPad, phone or Mac ever have.