2010: Sunday Salon – January Wrap-Up

Yeah, yeah, it’s Monday.  But I have a day off from work thanks to the 11 inches of snow that fell here Friday night (really don’t want to talk about that), and after a rather productive morning of finishing a book and getting groceries, I’m ready to settle down and do some catching up on the blog.

I only reviewed 6 books this month, which makes my total seem low.  But it’s an artificial low! Let me explain.  First, here are the 6 I reviewed in January:

Technically, I read The First Rule in December, but wanted to wait to post my review when the book was released.  Then we have Shogun! This took me roughly 3 weeks to read, but it was totally worth it.  It’s been a long time since I’ve read a saga like that.  Since then, I’ve picked up the pace a little.  In fact, I have 4 books that I finished (the last of them this morning) that are in the queue to review.  So I think my January total is a little closer to 9 than 6. Not as high as I’d like it to be if I’m going to make 144 by the end of the year, but we have a long ways to go!

The end of the month also marks the end of my first month as a Kindle owner.  I’ve been pretty pleased with it so far.  I’ve been able to put all of the ebooks I already owned onto it (with the help of Calibre, a fantastic e-book management and conversion program), and my experience with purchasing has been flawless.  I also got a case for it that I’m really happy with… this one from M-Edge:


I *love* this case.  I got the synthetic leather, in red.  I can stand my Kindle up and read easily while I’m eating lunch, which is when I do most of my Kindle reading.  It’s also easy to hold on to if I’m not standing it up.  My birthday is tomorrow, and I’m planning to take some of my birthday money to buy the light that M-Edge sells that slides into the case and can be stored there.

Now for the Kindle itself.  The things I really like about it are how easy it is to read, how easy it is to load files onto it, and how light it is.  But, like most devices, there are some things that could be done better:

  • The wireless settings.  I keep my wireless turned off most of the time, because the wireless networks I am in most often are protected networks, and it seems that the Kindle keeps trying to connect to them and in the process, drains the battery.  There’s no way to even put in a password.
  • Folder management would be nice, but I’m pretty sure I can live without it.  Something I would like to be able to do is jump to a certain page in my table of contents.  The search feature does help if I’m looking for a particular book in my list.
  • Sometimes, it freezes.  I’ll be reading a book and it won’t advance to the next page.  Most of the time I can unfreeze it by putting it into sleep mode and then turning it on again, but sometimes I have to reset it.  I don’t know if this is due to the sheer number of items on it (several hundred), but I’m nowhere close to filling it up so I hope that’s not it.

Overall, I’ve been super happy with it.  I *thought* I was happy just reading on my iPhone (and I still read on it when the opportunity is right), but the Kindle has shown me that reading on my iPhone was straining my eyes more than I thought.  With the case on it, I’m not afraid to take it anywhere.  I even take it with me when I play league pool twice a week.

The real challenge? Making sure I don’t neglect all of my paper books!

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