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Get your Mitts Off My Kindle: A Review of Sorts

The books went to the library. The kids went to Europe.Before we left we had bookshelves in every room of our house on nearly every wall. If you came to our Cocktail Tag Sale, you probably left with a stack of books. So what's a nomadic homeschooling family to do about those European baggage restrictions? Yes, exactly -- go Digital Nomad! Kindle. We love it. (I have to say here that we didn't actually buy it. It was a going away present from Brenna's father and his wife -- thank you Bob and Kim).

I'm not sure if I would have considered the Kindle if we weren't traveling, but now that we have one I never want to be without. There are four of us in the family, and in a world of unlimited disposable income, we'd have five Kindles. It already has more than sixty books on it, including, The Complete Mark Twain Collection and eveything Rick Steves has written about the areas we're traveling. We do the Rick Steves self guided tours around cities, Brenna reading from the Kindle as we go.

We got the Kindle just a few days before we left andAnd, the Kindle tour of the Doge's Palace in Venice each of us immediately downloaded a book. Then, when we hit Europe we weren't getting the Whispernet signal any more. Opps -- Europe wasn't covered by the Whispernet used in the original US version of the Kindle. This means no wireless downloads to the Kindle from Amazon. After a brief initial panic, I figured out that you can download from Amazon to your computer and then upload to the Kindle -- easy. Now however, there's a U.S. & International Wireless version. Even easier.

I will say, I think the Kindle is a bit pricey -- maybe too pricey at the current $259 for the Kindle 2 -- that would pay for a lot of tree-based books. The Kindle book prices are so-so at around $10 for newer ones. The real deal is on the classics like, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes and Treasure Island, which are both free.

Kindle tour at a Vienna CafeAround bedtime someone usually shouts, "I call Kindle," and then there's an argument about who had it the night before. Some name calling and hair pulling. Then I say, "Fine you take it, just don't keep me awake."

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Reader Comments (5)

Oh, that is funny!!! Shall we send another??
We're so happy that you like it!

Nov 2, 2009 at 7:39 PM | Unregistered CommenterKim

I'm downloading Kindle books on my iphone and believe it or not, it's very easy to read. Not wasting as much time waiting for errant actors to show up. Pull out the phone and read a book!!

Nov 2, 2009 at 7:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterEric Gotthelf

We were just discussing if it is a wise purchase financially. So can you join a "club" and get books or do you pay as you go for about $10 a book?? Right now we use the library. I'm thinking that is the better way to go, right?!?!?

loving your posts and am envious of the places you'll go.....

Nov 2, 2009 at 8:08 PM | Unregistered Commenterpamela

@ Pamela No clubs that I know of, we download from the Amazon store. The $10 adds up quickly, which is why I look for all the free and $1 books that we might be interested in too. As far as the Kindle vs. the Library -- The Library kicks the Kindles butt for price and the, "It feels good to support the Library" factor. And let's face it, a book just feels right in your hands. The Kindle IS CONVENIENT and packs a reading wallop.

@Eric How many years of our lives have we lost waiting for actors?? All hail digital media and PDAs.

@ Kim Any time you want.

Nov 2, 2009 at 10:13 PM | Registered CommenterBob & Brenna Redpath

The kindle sounds great. But now that you've got an address for a bit, have you considered BookCrossing. Not only for "wild releases" where books are left to travel for people to randomly find (though you can also hunt them down if you're enthusiastic enough", you can also request controlled releases. I've done a couple of book swaps this way and also waiting to receive the 2nd in a series that I'm reading.

Bookworms unite!!!

Nov 3, 2009 at 2:41 AM | Unregistered CommenterKanga_Rue

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