Quarantine reading with my Kindle

I was an avid reader when I was younger. My family and I used to go to the mall every week and I remember going home from those trips with shopping bags filled with new books. I would also wait for my school’s annual book drive, where I would spend all my savings just to buy new books. I remember being so proud of my little book collection and showing it off to my friends.

Those were fun times.

But eventually, as time went on, I stopped reading books. At first, I just didn’t have the time. And even if I did, I didn’t have access to the physical books that I wanted, which were either insanely expensive or unavailable in my country. I tried reading off my iPad for a bit, but my grandma-esque eyes just couldn’t handle that screen.

Well, now that I have more time during the quarantine, I decided to get back into reading. And I decided that the best way to get started was to buy a Kindle. A Kindle Paperwhite, to be exact.

My Kindle Paperwhite. It’s actually really thin and light even with the case on!

I’ve been using this for more than a month, and now that I’ve spent quite some time with it, I can say that it’s definitely one of the best impulse purchases I’ve ever made. I actually feel like the Kindle got me out of a long, long reading slump and made me enjoy reading again.

The first thing that made a huge difference was its screen and interface. The screen is so easy on my sensitive eyes: it’s glare-free in bright sunlight and its backlight is gentle in dark settings. I no longer have to worry about my room’s lighting or anything – I can read whenever and wherever I want without straining my eyes. I also really enjoy not having extra apps or any form of notification on the device, which helps me concentrate on what I’m reading.

I can also buy digital books online and have it delivered straight to my Kindle, which means there’s no need for me to comb through the whole mall only to find out that the book I want isn’t available! It’s a very useful feature, especially now that we’re on quarantine and everyone is discouraged from going out. Oh, and I love how I can download a book sample on my Kindle and read the first few parts to see whether I would like a certain book. I’ve had lots of terrible experiences where I bought a book because everyone says it’s “excellent”, only to find that I hated it or that I wouldn’t derive any value from it. This feature definitely helped me save tons of money (and avoid disappointing books)!

I also love how I can highlight passages and write notes about them! I know that writing on paper books is considered a mortal sin by some book lovers, but sometimes I really, really want to do it, especially when I’m reading non-fiction. There are times when I have thoughts or strong opinions about a certain passage and writing it down helps me articulate why I felt that way or why I agree or disagree with the author. I’m happy that I can finally do that on a Kindle. My Kindle Paperwhite also syncs my highlights and notes to Goodreads, which is a great feature!

But in my opinion, the best thing about the Kindle is that it enables me to carry my entire library with me, without adding weight or taking up precious physical storage space. Because of this, the Kindle fits perfectly into my current lifestyle, which is focused on being mindful of my current posessions, the physical space that they take, and the purpose of the things I add into my life. I get overwhelmed when I’m faced with too much clutter, so I’m currently trying to limit my posessions to the few things that I actually need or intend to use often. Physical books do not belong to any of those categories. So, it makes more sense for me to have just one device where I can store and read my whole library as opposed to having loads of physical books just sitting there unused when I’m done with them. In the end, making the switch to a Kindle is about changing the way I buy and consume content, according to the new lifestyle that I’m creating for myself.

As I’m writing this, I can hear a few gasps in my head from some of my die-hard physical book-loving friends. “Physical books are better!” or “You’re not a book lover if you read e-books!” or “You’ll never get the feel or smell of paper when you’re reading e-books!” and trust me, I get it. I get all of it.

Of course I love physical books, and I’m not saying that they’re inferior or that I will no longer read them. I will definitely continue to read physical books. I still make occasional visits to my former university just to read something from the library. I still borrow physical books that don’t have e-book versions. I still have my old books, and I still re-read them when I feel like it. But I will no longer buy new ones if I can help it because, like I said, buying physical just doesn’t fit my preferred lifestyle anymore. Besides, havingΒ my Kindle in my life has made me realize that my enjoyment of a book is not affected by its form factor at all.Β I enjoy books not because of the feel of paper in my hand or the sound of the pages turning. I enjoy books because of the stories they’re telling, or the things that I’m learning from them. I know I will still be able to learn new things and immerse myself in wonderful stories whether I’m reading on a fancy hardcover book, a tattered paperback book, a tablet, or an e-reader.

So far, my Kindle has been a great companion during this crazily long quarantine. I’m currently on a clear-out readathon where I have to finish all of the books on my shelf/to-read list before purchasing new ones. If you’d like to see what I’m reading, follow me on Goodreads. I’d be happy to get some book recommendations from you as well! I have a particularly soft spot for books related to history and economics πŸ˜‰

How do you prefer to read? Let me know in the comments! 😊

12 Comments

  1. I love physical books but I also see the iPad with the Apple books app a lovely tool for reading. I’ve found lots of different kinds of books there. I probably also have quite sensitive eyes but since I use my iPad for almost everything else, I’m not interested in getting another gadget for reading, I like to have everything in one place. I do prefer physical books but since we have very limited space at home I try to limit my book purchases… also because I have loads of books I haven’t even read yet – both physical and digital.

    1. I used to read via the Apple Books app too! It was indeed convenient, but as I said, my eyes are too sensitive to be reading off the iPad for long periods of time. I do get your point about having one gadget for everything though. It does make things simpler and easier.

  2. Kindle definitely is a good buy especially for book lovers. I’ve tried numerous times reading in iPad but my eyes couldn’t handle that screen, too plus when I’m laying down in bed it just feels so big and heavy.

    Anyway, glad that you are enjoying your books ^^ Keep in touch

    Ann | http://annchoi.me

  3. I gifted a Kindle to my sister after so many years of thinking, cause yes physical books have all the things we know. But the weight is just something that overlays all them. It’s so comfy, handy, light.. and the books costs much less. I mean, I still love books and have them but I can see the difference and the convenience even not having it (actually it isn’t mine and I still haven’t read anything on it).
    I made a promise to myself: first I read all the books in my library, and then I’ll buy a kindle for myself too πŸ™‚

    1. Wow, it’s so nice that you gave your sister a Kindle! It really is a great device and very light. You’re right about the price of the books too! πŸ™‚

      Well, I hope you can finish all of the books on your to-read list so that you can get your hands on a Kindle soon πŸ™‚

  4. I always had a harder time reading consistently from an iPad. Something about concentrating with that type of brightness. I found that the Kindle Paperwhite being great because it looks more natural. So cool that you can do a lot with the Kindle too. I like that Kindle doesn’t take up a lot of space either. I am big on saving physical space where possible!

    Nancy ✨ mdrnminimalists.com

  5. I have a Kindle as well but I haven’t been reading much on it. I still prefer reading/surfing on iPad Pro with my Apple Pencil. It makes my Kindle purchase kind of wasted. I wish I got the iPad Pro earlier on hindsight.

  6. Hello Claudine! It’s been a while! I’ve heard about that, Kindle for readers πŸ˜€ I honestly not really an avid fan of reading physical books. It makes me sleepy XD but I love ready articles online and manga. I can take up hours on that πŸ˜€ Heehee~

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