Today, the item in question has landed.

Sadly I couldn’t tear into it at work as…well, let’s just say I collected it downstairs from our pointless building reception at 17:15 after it had been left there by CityLink at 12:45.  Can you imagine my anger and anxiety?

The Box

So, got home after ten pm as I got the chance to see the preview of Buried.  And dragged the unopened box with me.  The above is the picture of the sealed box.  I was dancing on the inside.

The Gadget

Then, seeing it FOR REAL in Real Life.  It is small.  It is DINKY.  Having now become used to my boss’s iPad that I’ve been carting about and mucking around with…well, size wise, NO contest at all.  It is light and fits in the palm of my hand.  I love it for that factor alone.  The iPad to me felt very very unwieldly and I was constantly concerned I was going to drop it.

The Power

The plug!  I know, I know.  I am ze geek.  But I was really concerned about how I would be charging my lovely toy and keeping it charged.  Well, the plug is similar to the iPhone / iPad plug.  It has the USB connection into the plug with a smaller connection for the actual Kindle.  So this can be used as a standard PC USB or a plug USB.  Tres handy.

The Pretty

The Kindle, in the flesh, charging, beside it’s very cool looking quick start guide.  I wanted to lick it, it was that pretty.  But I didn’t.  Because I’m an adult. 😉 *chortle*

The First Purchase

After mucking around with it a bit, skimming the quick start guide and checking out the kindle page on Amazon, I bought my first book.   Wolf Hall.  Yes, I have a big-ass real life copy on my bookshelf but let’s face it, carting it around, would mean using an extra bag.  Not gonna happen.  Voila – giant book in tiny Kindle.  No extra bag, no sore muscles and also, safe tourists as Wolf Hall is hefty enough to smack someone in the arm with it as they careen past you.

My first impressions:

Look and size

Very small.  Hugely surprised by its slenderness.  Can it be the work horse Amazon tells us it can be? I think so. Also, it’s very tactile.  It makes you want to touch it.

Usability

A doddle – even if you aren’t particularly IT literate, following the instructions on how to do various bits, is tremendously easy.  I would say that it is not as intuitive as an iPad and I kept wanting to touch the screen like an eejit, but once I got the hang of the buttons, the HOME and MENU buttons it was very easy.

Accessing the Kindle Store and 3G and Wifi

Pah – it’s all set up.  I turned it on and it already read as: Liz’s Kindle.  That charmed me immediately.  Because I am easily charmed and have delusions of grandeur where everyone knows who I am…

Anyway – accessing the Kindle Store was easy as my 3G and wifi was already set up.  All I had to do is go into my wifi setting and link it to my network here at home – easy as pie.  there are a lot of books – loads! – on the Kindle store already.  I had some recommendations waiting for me already, which was nifty.  I decided to be a rebel and went my own route.  I scrolled through many pages, looking for books. And realised that I have a lot of physical books.  So I needed something I didn’t already have.  I chose Wolf Hall as I mentioned due to size, I also chose The Passage’s sample bit and then I decided to opt for Jim Butcher’s fantasy series (not Harry Dresden) and downloaded the first book in the Codex Alera books, Furies of Calderon.

Emailing stuff from me to me

I have a friend’s very large manuscript which I am reading at the moment.  So I opted to email it to myself onto the Kindle.  Again – very easy – had to approve the email address I emailed it from on the Amazon Kindle page and within seconds, there was my email, with the word document attachment. The formatting is a bit wonky, but honestly, it was where the name of the book was, and my friend’s name – so it’s no big deal.

Overall thoughts:

Tomorrow I’m taking it to work.  I will be reading it during my commute.  I am genuinely pleased with my purchase.  I think it is really good value for money.  This is my first ever e-reader and I am a bit smitten with it.  I know I have much to figure out on it still, and am sure that I will soon be a complete boffin on it.  But in the meantime, I am just looking forward to using it.

3,500 books, here I come!

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