How to chose a Kindle Christmas Gift

Some of you might have a Kindle on your Christmas list or be playing Santa for someone with a Kindle on their lists. Kindle shopping is more confusing now than when I bought my Kindle last March. Amazon now offers a variety of Kindles with a variety of features. How do you choose? It depends on what you want to do with your Kindle.

I can help if your Gift Receiver wants to
Use the Kindle for Reading Novels.

And there are better electronic items for everything else except for reading novels on an eReader.

I don’t use my Kindle to:

Play Games,
Read magazines,
Surf the Net,
Read Blogs.

I don’t need 3-G.

My Kindle can hold thousands of books. I can buy several books when I have a Wi-Fi connection. I can survive not being able to connect to Wi-FI someplace.

That eliminates: Kindle Fire $199, Kindle Touch 3-G $149, Kindle Keyboard 3-G $139.

That leaves: [A] Kindle $79, [B] Kindle Touch WFi $99, [C] Kindle Keyboard WiFi*, [D] Kindle DX $379.00

I use my Kindle [C] to Read Novels, therefore:

  1. I want readable black type.
  2. I need to turn the page.
  3. I want it light weight.
  4. I want it easy to hang onto.
  5. I want a long battery life.
  6. I need it to hold ebooks
  7. I need to be to scroll my library menu to chose a book.

So how to ch0ose: (By desired function list above)

  1. The Kindles that use e-ink are far superior to read black type on. The type is not made up of pixels, it is solid black e-ink and the page has no-glare. (Kindles with color do not use e-ink; the type is made up of all 3 colors, have pixels, and the glare of a back-lit screen) So [A], [B], [C], [D] will work well.
  2. Easily done. On [A]. [C], and [D] press a button, on [C] you just tap the screen.
  3. [A] wins with a weight of Weighs 5.98 oz. [B] Weighs 7.5 oz., [C] Weighs 8.5 0z.
    Don’t chose the heavy [D] – weighs 18.9 oz.
  4. A complaint about the Kindle is it’s easy to press keys or turn pages while picking up or holding it to read, especially while getting used to it.
    [B] Has the biggest area on the bottom to hang onto but of course touch screens can be well touchy. If you like touch screens [B] has the easiest grip. I’m one of those people who hate touch screens and mess up when I touch them, so for those like me [A] is the easiest to hold. There is only a 5-way controller and a button on each side leaving more space than. [C] is probably the hardest of the e-ink Kindles to hold but I own [C] and have learned not to press stuff accidentally by keeping my thumb in very limited areas. [D] is like a big [C] so might have a little more grip room but otherwise the same downfalls.
  5. [B] and [C] have the longest battery life–2 months**. [A] lasts one month, [D] lasts 3 weeks. All adequate since they are easy and quick to charge on youtr PC or wall outlet.
  6. Kindle [B], [C], and [D] have 4GB or 3,000 books (average), Kindle [A]  has 2GB or 1,400 books. Note that more books can be stored for free on Amazon Cloud. How many books do you really need at your finger tips?
  7. Navigation is likely to be a key factor in purchase choice. Assuming you only read novels on Kindle and usually chose books from on your PC you will not be navigating so much. If you like to make notes and highlight sentences, and shop on your kindle you’ll be navigating more. I prefer ordering my books on my PC and having the arrive on my Kindle via whispernet. I do sometimes order book on kindle keyboard but would rather not. That said. [B], [C], [D], are superior to [A] in navigation. It’s a mater of what you like better, keyboard or touch.
    [A] is the hardest to navigate. You have to move the cursor click by click using the 5 way navigation button. Scrolling through your library is easy and similar to using [C] or [D]. The keyboard is a picture on the screen and you have to use 5-way click step your way to each letter. Typing in words would be very tedious.

Your decision should be easy now. Prices are based on Kindles with special offers (ads). Click to see my post  about Kindle with Special Offers/Ads.

Based on what is most important to me I would by [A] Kindle—if I didn’t already own one. The lighter weight and less buttons to accidentally push outweigh the navigation obstacles (the way I buy ebooks). The shorter battery life won’t be problem. I’m already in the habit of  plugging my Kindle into a wall outlet next to my bed as needed.

*New Kindle Keyboard with Special Offers is not available for order. I don’t know if they’re out of stock or being phased out. They do have Kindle Keyboard without Ads, which is what I actually own, for $139 which is what I paid last March.

** I read a lot so the battery life for [C] is actually about 2 weeks. Customer service told me the Kindle runs better when 1/2 or more charged so I charge more often. Forgetting to disconnect WiFi after ordering will drastically shorten battery time.

How to Delete an Icky eBook-Permanently

Recently, I purchased an eBook that regretfully turned out to be what I would define as porn. Tastes vary but most of us have our own boundary between, love scenes and porn. We can easily tell when the line is crossed—your brain protests with an adamant internal exclamation of…

“Ick!”  AKA the Ick Factor.

So I have this “Icky” book I don’t want to read or even have on my Kindle. For the sake of discussion lets call this book  Over Xed.”

I deleted Over Xed.

To delete a book  from Kindle, underlined the title. Right click the five way controller, on the page that comes up, scroll to bottom and click Remove from Device.

Some time later, my Kindle froze up and I had to reload all my books from my Kindle archive at Amazon.

Over Xed reloaded as well.

I didn’t have the time to investigate so I simply deleted it again. Weeks later Kindle froze up again*

I got Over Xed back again.  Now I’m mad.

I don’t want Over Xed on my Kindle—it’s icky. Now I have to search for how.

So How Do You Permanently Delete an eBook from your Kindle Archive?

Use your PC to do this.  Go to Amazon Kindle Store. Click Manage Your Kindle at the upper right hand side of screen. This will bring up Your Kindle Library. Scroll down until you find the offending ebook. At the right of this e book hover over Actions. On the drop down menu click delete from library. It will ask you to confirm this action. Click Yes.  The book will stay off your Kindle and spare you further embarrassment. 🙂

Yay! Over Xed is finally gone for good. Shouldn’t there be some kind of sex rating system on Amazon for ebooks? Currently it seems to be up to the publisher. But that’s another post for another day.

*A frozen Kindle can result from an intermittent Wi-Fi connection and/or a lower battery charge while downloading—especially free book samples for some reason.

Ten Novels of Thanksgiving

Psychology Today provided this list of Thanksgiving Novels. This might seem like a strange source until you consider that whenever extended family members are invited together for a holiday meal, a bounty of emotions join in like uninvited guests. That and the fact that most families are more than a little…well crazy! Novel are not in top ten order.

Ten Novels of Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Night, Richard Bausch

Bausch describes the novel as “a love comedy with sorrows.”  The book centers around two elderly aunts that the family calls “The Crazies” and the dramas of assorted family members.


The Ghost at the Table, by Suzanne Berne

A story of the Thanksgiving reunion of estranged and dysfunctional family.


Bitter Harvest, Susan Bowden

A suspenseful novel of another reunion of estranged family members but this one has family members of danger.


A Secret Affair by Barbara Taylor Bradford

Romance grows from American strangers in Venice who decide to celebrate Thanksgiving together.


The Thanksgiving Visitor, Truman Capote

This tale based on Capote’s youth is not available on Kindle or I would order it. I’ll have to settle for the TV adaptation on YouTube in several parts. The short story is a sequel to “A Christmas Memory”  which I’ve read and loved. (I also loved  the TV adaptation with the funny fruitcake production.)


Courting Disaster, Julie Edelson

A funny and sad southern Thanksgiving novel that actually has a Psychiatrist in attendance at the holiday meal. Sounds efficient. Not available on Kindle.


The Lay of the Land  Richard Ford

This novels chronicles a Thanksgiving with Frank Bascombe the popular character from Ford’s Independence Day and The Sportswriter.


Dear James, Jon Hassler

A moving novel about friendship and an elderly woman celebrating Thanksgiving with friends. Not available on Kindle.

Model Behavior, Jay McInerney

This novel is about a Thanksgiving dinner in a classy restaurant with glamorous people who are not the happy (or classy) people they seem to be on the surface. The story is a drama although the holiday meal scene is supposed to be hilarious.


The Harrowing, Alexandra Sokoloff

This novels is a scary ghost story about college students spending Thanksgiving on campus.


Adapted from Psychology today article:

3 More Authors Bring Kindle Million Club Membership to 14

Congratulations to David Baldacci, Amanda Hocking and Stephenie Meyer.

On November 9th Amazon announced that these three authors have earned their key to the Kindle Million Club by selling 1 million Kindle eBooks, and joined Stieg Larsson, James Patterson, Nora Roberts, Charlaine Harris, Lee Child, Suzanne Collins, Michael Connelly, John Locke, Kathryn Stockett, Janet Evanovich and George R.R. Martin.

26 year old Amanda Hocking took the most interesting path to her membership. She is the second Kindle member to gain the majority of her million by publishing herself, but her claim to fame is began in 2010, but  in January 2011 she exploded onto the publishing scene.

She rocked the publishing world by pricing ebooks at 99¢!

After failed attempts attempts to find a traditional publisher shocking Hocking self-published and sold her novels on online bookstores like Amazon. She sold 164,000 books in 2010, mainly ebooks.

Then in, January 2011, just one month,  she sold more than 450,000 copies of her nine titles and over 99% were e-book sales. More shocking, most were priced 99¢ and $2.99 when most traditionally published ebooks were selling at $12.99 and $7.99.
And, contrary to the claims of traditional publishers (trying to get the egg off their face), Amanda Hocking’s  books were professionally edited and well-written.  Later in the year a top traditional publisher, St. Martins Press, offered the publishing contracts she was denied for years; she accepted. Self-Publishing  is a business which took too much time from her writing.

David Baldacci‘s membership is no surprise. In the 15 years since his first novel, Absolute Power was published, 15 of the over 25 novels he’s written have become best sellers. Impressive.

Stephanie Meyers‘ claim to fame is her Twilight Series which are worshiped especially by young female readers. There is no denying her success. However, she has garnered criticism about the skill of her writing and her pedophile main character from many sources.  I read the trilogy and found her writing creative, but personally had several issues with the books.

But criticize Stephanie Meyers at your own risk!

Stephen King dissed her writing publicly and has been under attack by outraged teens ever since! They claim Stephen King is jealous of her success–proof of how utterly young and unworldly they are. (A link to King’s very amusing rebuttal is below.)

Links to Further Reading:

Stephen Kings Rebuttal Stephanie Meyers Controversy on You Tube. [This is hysterical!]

Authors catch fire with self-published e-books, Carol Memmott, US Today

Amazon 11/9/11 press announcement

David Baldacci Website

Amanda Hocking’s Blog

Stephanie Meyers Website

Left Cold by Amazon Prime’s Free ebook Loan

Amazon Prime now has a benefit for Kindle owners through the new Kindle Owner’s Lending Library. Kindle owners who sign up for Amazon Prime can borrow up to one book a month at no charge or due dates. 

 This lending library has thousands of books, over a hundred of which will be current and former NY Times Best Sellers. The library will offer a wide selection of fiction and non-fiction categories. Amazon’s press statement gave this list of book examples, “Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game, The Big Short and Liars’ Poker by Michael Lewis, The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins, and Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen –plus award-winning books such as The Finkler Question and Guns, Germs, and Steel, memoirs such as Anthony Bourdain’s Kitchen Confidential, and motivational books like The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

Amazon Prime costs $79 a year to gain these benefits:

  • Free two-day shipping on millions of items with no minimum order size
  • Unlimited instant streaming movies and TV shows with Prime instant videos
  • One Kindle book to borrow for free each month from the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library

I certainly would not sign up for an Amazon Prime membership just to borrow one Kindle book a month if you do not use any other benefits. $6.60 a month for one free book from a very limited library not a good deal. Thousands of books may sound like a lot but the Kindle Store sells over 425 Thousand books.

However, if you regularly order stuff (other than ebooks) from Amazon the free shipping benefit would pay for the membership and if would enjoy Prime Instant movies  at a time when NetFlix has doubled it’s price, then the monthly book to borrow could be a nice little bonus.

Links to Additional Information:

Press release announcing Amazon Prime Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.

Amazon Prime Membership Information.