As I take the month of November to think of things I’m thankful for, today, I’m thankful for books. I love to read, and I love to get lost in a book! What does it mean to lose myself in a book? Well, when I get so involved in the story that I feel like I’m actually there in person, viewing the characters doing their thing and hearing them speak, then I’m lost. I can become so absorbed in a book that I don’t even hear people talking to me here in my home!
I can read continuously for hours, living through the characters in a good book. Now this is not possible with all books. Some writers don’t capture me in their plot lines, and I can put their books down with no problem. But when I find a good book that draws me into it, I can’t put that book down. There was one night when I picked up a book at 10:00 to read a bit before going to sleep, and I found myself having to read “just one more page” until 5:45 the next morning when I finished the book. I believe that book was The Winds of War. What a thriller!
In retirement, it’s good to be able to enjoy reading that much. We have more time now to read, and should allow ourselves the luxury of doing just that. The only problem is that books can overwhelm your home if you aren’t careful. Have you ever moved and had to pack books? Those boxes are sure heavy! Books can also be dust catchers in your home.
Some books are meant to be held in the hand. Sometimes the colorful pictures in books are to be admired. I call these “coffee table” books. We’ve all seen them. But the kinds of books that capture me totally are the kinds with story lines. For years, I’ve passed these on to friends or donated them to my local library after I’ve read them so they wouldn’t take over my house. Now I carry them in my purse!
Yes, you read that right! I carry them in my purse. I’ve decided that e-readers are much easier to manage than big, heavy books. I bought a Kindle about 18 months ago, and I’ve never regretted the purchase. I can store over a thousand books in that little device and keep them all right in my purse where I can enjoy them sitting in doctors’ offices or any other place where I might have to wait on someone.
Books for the Kindle are much cheaper than regular books —– some are actually free! I look for those free bargains because some of those new authors are really talented. Many books sell for only $.99 – $3.99, and that fits almost anyone’s budget. You will find the most recent releases by well known authors are also available for the Kindle, too.
Advantages of a Kindle
- Adjustable print size
- Good contrast to avoid glare
My 93 yr old mother enjoys her Kindle because she can make the print very large for her failing eyesight. She has always been a reader but had give it up because she couldn’t see the letters clearly. Now she reads constantly, and I have to really shop often to keep her in books. Her Kindle isn’t awkward or heavy to hold, either. Sometimes a book can get really heavy they older we get.
There are several models of Kindles that you might want to consider. First of all is the Plain Jane model. This is the least expensive one, but it works well even without all the bells and whistles. Mom just bought one of these to replace her first Kindle which she broke! (I think she fell asleep with it and it fell out of her hands!) She only paid $69 for this new one, and I’ve heard that they are even cheaper when they go on sale. It doesn’t have a back lit screen, so she has to have plenty of natural lighting to read or have a lamp nearby. The words are easy to see on the screen, though, and this model serves Mom well.
Now there is a newer model called a paperwhite. This one has a back lit screen that is bright enough to read even in the dark. This might come in handy while traveling at night. I can imagine trying to read on a bus or train in the dark.
The next model up the scale is the Kindle Fire. This model comes in full color. It acts like a tablet similar to an iPad, but it’s smaller. The colors are vibrant, and the clarity is beautiful. It is able to connect to the internet through local WiFi or with a build in internet connection.
Most of these models come with local WiFi capability as one option or built in internet connection capability as another.
Further up the list of models you will find the Kindle Fire with HD viewing. This high definition is crisp and clear…and rather pricey! But if you plan to watch movies on your Kindle, you probably would want this.
Between now and Christmas you can get some good deals on a Kindle at Amazon.com . I’m giving you some links below to check them out. Mom ordered hers there on a Saturday, and had it in her hand that next Wednesday. Their service is really fast! Who knows? Maybe you can get Santa to bring YOU one!
I hope you will consider making a Kindle part of the joy of your retirement. It certainly has brought joy to mine!
Bookshelves – By Muffet [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Kindle Touch – By Intel Free Press [CC-BY-2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons