Monday, July 19, 2010

To buy or not to buy...

Do you have an e-book reader?

I'm wondering if it is a good idea for me. I adore books. My personal home library is over 3,000 books, mostly hardcover. (I'm allergic to the ink used in paperback books and newspapers.). I never, ever thought I'd consider anything but the real thing. However, holding one open and up, especially in bed (where else?) is very, very tiring and frequently impossible these days. I've read a little online but the glare is tiring and my position is limited.

E-readers are pretty expensive and even worse than the initial expense can be the cost of the books. When I was able to shop a lot, I got very nice new and used books at Half-Price Books for almost nothing. Laughing here, I was the queen of clearance-priced books.

It is hard to think of paying $10 or more for a book (that will never grace my shelves or be held in my hands...sigh). Now what little energy I can muster for shopping goes to survival needs, of course. Hmm, thinking about it, I guess I will have to pay more for books buying online anyway since I'm rarely able to cruise Half Price anymore.

Many of the e-readers, like Kindle from Amazon and Nook from Barnes and Noble are associated with one store and I assume you can't buy books from other sources. That's okay, I guess, if you are primarily a reader of best-sellers...I'm not. What if you like more obscure books, like I do? Maybe you can't find more obscure books for an e-reader anyway.

I used to be a voracious reader. I haven't been reading nearly as much the last couple of years. I'm not certain why...if I've lost interest due to the CFS or if it's the difficulty holding a book or what. I comprehend and remember what I read. I'm not sure if get more fatigued reading for fun. I know I do with heavier technical reading or under pressure.

I read a mystery a couple of weeks ago. Light, fun reading...a Diane Mott Davidson, Goldy the caterer, one. Other than holding the book it didn't seem to tire me too much...I really enjoyed it in fact. I'm reading 'Like Bees to Honey' online now, a novel by Caroline Smailes. I'm not certain if reading it on my laptop is tiring me more or not (glare). I am tired after reading but I'm in sort of bad shape right now anyway. Hard to know if it's the act of reading or the medium or my condition right now. I am enjoying the book.

I know some people with CFS have great difficulty reading. I do, if the material is very technical and complex or has extremely long and convoluted paragraphs. I can still read technical things (I love science), I just have to take it in smaller chunks. Reading anything is easier when the paragraphs are shorter.

So many variables to consider and with CFS you never know from day to day what or how things are going to affect you. It's hard to judge sometimes. Sometimes, it isn't apparent immediately if something has over-tired me, either. It may take doing it a few times or more to be sure...seeing a pattern emerge. With other things, it's apparent right away. For example, I can't listen to audio-books at all...they exhaust me completely and very quickly. I have a lot harder time processing things auditorally.

I'm still researching the different e-readers and I will want to see one first hand before I decide. I need to see how easy it is to read, how heavy it is, how hard to hold, if I think I could prop it up. etc. I'm just not sure. As expensive as they are, I don't want to buy one and find I get too tired reading or I'm just not that interested in reading now. I wish you could rent or borrow one first to be sure.

just thinking and wondering about whether an e-reader would be a good option for me.

Anyone tried one or have any info or suggestions?

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