Do You Have a Love/Hate Relationship With Any of Your Gadgets?

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In my dreams, I live in a house with a library like the one from Beauty and the Beast.

When I move, there are always twice as many boxes of books as anything else. I restrain myself from entering bookshops because the seven bookcases I own are already double stacked and I live in tiny apartment (not an enchanted castle). I own three copies of A Streetcar Named Desire (one filled with director’s notes, one ‘borrowed’ from a past educational institution, one “pretty edition”). I’m a book person. The physical object kind.

So when e-readers first came out, I was one of those alarmists moaning about the ‘death of the print book’ and ‘society being defined by the extent of its arts culture’.

Past-me was an idiot*. I freaking love my e-reader (a Kindle). Also, all those people on trains were reading dreadful free evening newspapers before and now some of them (surely) are reading actual literature.

I love my Kindle for all the usual reasons – it’s super light, I have 100s of options in my handbag all the time and I can read vampire books on the tram and no-one knows. If sales are anything to go by, nobody needs convincing that e-readers are awesome, so here’s what I DON’T like about it (the non-culture-police list):

It’s Indestructible

I’ve owned mine for 2 years. Technologically, it’s a relic. It’s in the cheapest cover I could buy. I’ve been known to read in the rain. And it shows no sign of wear. This is bad because now they make pretty touch screen ones with fancy features and when it comes to gadgets I am definitely Gen-Y. Haven’t Amazon heard of built-in obsolescence?

It’s Waaay Too Easy To Buy Books

Real-life scenario: Flick past Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban on TV. Realize I still haven’t read The Casual Vacancy. Buy The Casual Vacancy. Remember it was recently revealed that Rowling used a pseudonym to write some mystery novel. Buy The Cuckoo’s Calling. Discover that the Potter series are like $7 each and BUY THEM ALL EVEN THOUGH I ALREADY OWN THEM BUT THEY’RE IN HARDCOVER BECAUSE I’M A SUPER-NERD AND I LINED UP TO BUY THEM THE DAY THEY CAME OUT BUT READING BOOKS IN HARDCOVER IS ACTUALLY REALLY ANNOYING. Realize I’ve spent $80 on books in 4 min, 3 ½ min of which was looking for my Kindle.

You Can’t Put e-Books On a Shelf When You’ve Finished Reading

I would seriously be interested in some kind of a trade-your-ebook-credits-towards-a-print-copy-of-the-book-for-your-bookshelf scheme. Because Belle-fantasy.

Kindle Collections is Clunky

There’s no good way to organize your e-books. I’d like a drag-and-drop iPhone-app style thing or automatic alphabetization. It’s possible that other e-readers have better systems, or that they’ve fixed this in future versions (I wouldn’t know because Point 1).

Do you have a love/hate relationship with any of your gadgets?

*not about the arts culture thing, she was on the money there.


  1. I miss looking at the covers of other people’s books on the train, and starting conversations discussing the book. Also I miss feeling smart because everyone could see I was reading something cerebral.

    • JessB 3 years ago

      I miss that too! I was recently reading the Game of Throne series on my Kobo, and noticed someone reading the first book in the paper version. I managed to catch her eye (in a not creepy way) and explained that I was further in, and loving the series and we had a nice chat, but it did used to be easier.

      • Smaggle 3 years ago

        I bought Game of Thrones and I can’t get into it. So disapointing

    • Smaggle 3 years ago

      I can’t read on trains anyway, I always listen to podcasts. I miss being handed a battered book by friends though. Lending of books seems to be a thing of the past.

  2. Emily 3 years ago

    I just got a kindle!! So much fun! But I’ve spent way more on books in the last 2 days than I would’ve spent in 2 months. Whoops! Maybe that’s why they don’t need planned obsolescence.

    • Smaggle 3 years ago

      I’m terrible! I buy a book every two days especially as I was just on holiday.

  3. Dani 3 years ago

    Wow. I relate to every single word you have said in this post. EVERY WORD! Right down to the Beauty and the Beast library!

  4. Beckster 3 years ago

    Book/kindle twins! You took the thoughts right out of my head. I however, have become exceptional at giving books to op-shops due to the nature of living overseas and being unable to take stacks of books every time I moved!
    I’ve got a new vampire series to read on my kindle as I fly to Scotland in 2 weeks, hurrah!
    It always upsets me if someone doesn’t love a book that I love, more than if they hate every other object I own.
    Another thing that bugs me about kindle is that when you search for something in the store, you always get ridiculous things come up, that have no relevance to what you were searching for.

    • Smaggle 3 years ago

      I hate when an e-book ‘isn’t available in my country’. Why??? It’s a FILE!!!!

  5. Tahlia Meredith 3 years ago

    Right there with you on point 2. I LOVE ‘Buy now with 1-click’ but I’m sure my credit card hates it…

  6. Erika 3 years ago

    Being a hard-core bibliophile, the paper/digital book dichotomy strikes a chord! LOVE my Kindle. It augments my books rather than replacing them. Spent a month working my way through Project Gutenburg. The sorting into Collections drives me nuts. That so needs an update. The other bug-bear? Not being able to print out a text that is ONLY available electronically. Bear with me. My mum is a bit of an aviation history buff. Limited interest subject, so more and more is coming out as e-book only. At 80, mum does not want a Kindle, she wants paper. Obedient daughter buys e-books, downloads all the relevant software (including the ones that should remove the don’t edit block) and the damn things won’t let me convert to a pdf so I can print them for her. Argh!!!!

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