I’ve already admitted I have a bit of a shoe problem. Strangely, I don’t buy new purses as easily/frequently as I do shoes. Maybe it’s because a purse goes with every outfit so I don’t need as many. Actually, it’s probably because I don’t like moving all my stuff from one purse to another. I tend to stick with a single purse for a while, and I guess now I know it’s out of laziness! It’s much easier to change shoes from day to day, which makes it more fun to acquire more!
I also used to buy a lot of books, too. Usually at Costco, where I could collect a stack, flip through them, then assess which ones I really needed to bring home with me. Then I realized I was getting suckered into books that I either didn’t like or would never read again. They’d pile up in the house, then go into the donation pile. It seemed like a big waste of money. It’s been a while since I’ve purchased a book, aside from cookbooks I know I want or a paperback during desperate times at the airport. I have the library to thank for that! I discovered that you can put books on hold online and you’ll get an e-mail when that book is ready to be picked up. You usually have a week or two to retrieve your books, and they’re waiting for you on a bookshelf – it’s so convenient! I can’t even tell you how many books I’ve put on hold, picked up, flipped through, then decided I didn’t want to read past the first few pages. Back to the library they go, and I’m not out any hard-earned funds. Most cookbooks are at the library, too (even new ones), so I’ll try one out for a few weeks before deciding if I’d use it enough to actually warrant buying it. Some I do, some I find are not my style. I love it. It certainly helps that the library is kind of on my way home from work, which makes it easier to pick up and drop off books.
Because of this wonderful library system, I’d been wary about the Kindle or getting an e-reader. It seemed quite efficient to have all these books on one device, instead of packing a thick book into my purse or dealing with the weight of multiple books for a trip. But, I’d also gotten accustomed to not paying for books, and I wasn’t sure how many “classic literature” pieces I could deal with. I have the Kindle app on my iPhone, but the screen is small and it’s cumbersome to flip pages after only a paragraph or two. Then, Cami got a Kindle for Christmas and the whole wi-fi/free 3G piqued my interest. I was interested enough to put it on my Amazon.com wishlist and, being a good guy, Travis bought me one for my birthday. You really can access the internet on it, which is cool (I can Twitter and check Facebook, although in black and white) and it transferred all the books I downloaded through the iPhone app onto the Kindle. I started looking at e-books I wanted to read, but still couldn’t bring myself to pay for them (especially since sometimes the e-book is more expensive than the paperback version!) So, I downloaded free books and excerpts and blackjack games and sort of read through Alice in Wonderland, but I still put it aside in favor of the library books on my nightstand.
See, you can also “check out” audiobooks and e-books from the library’s website, but the e-books are in Adobe EPub format, which is not compatible with the Kindle. If you have a Sony e-reader or the Barnes & Noble Nook, you can actually read the e-books and then after a set lending period the book removes itself from the device (or something happens so you can’t read it anymore). I really, really wanted to be able to pick out e-books and read them on my Kindle; I probably only needed to read them once, anyway. There were even e-books available for the hard copy books currently on my library hold list! I was a little frustrated with this obstacle and resigned myself to reading the free Kindle books and possibly paying for a couple to load before we left for our next trip.
This is all to say, I have since discovered that there are ways to make library e-books readable on the Kindle. But, they involve steps that are a little not-legal and possibly unethical, depending on your stance on library books and lending periods (I mean, it’s all still not-legal; the unethical part is debatable). this is not to say I endorse taking not-legal steps or endeavors in order to save some money and read a library book on your Kindle… I’m just saying there are ways to do it and I may or may not be knowledgeable of such procedures.
But I still enjoy the hard copy books that I get from the library, too.