How to fit a year’s worth of reading into your purse

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Get a HUGE purse. Or check this out — the Sony Reader.

I went to a conference last year as a work thing, and one of the presentations was on e-books. The concept is that you buy a book online, download it to your computer or handheld, and read it onscreen. I don’t know about you, but just as I will never sit at my computer to watch a television program or movie, I will never read a book for pleasure sitting at my desk. Or with a laptop on my lap. Leisure reading must be portable — in the purse, to the dance studio, in the bag, to the doctor’s office, on the subway, in the coffee shop, back home, lying on the couch.

In the conference take-away info was a little brochure with a cover that looked like a PDA, or Palm Pilot-type of thing, only it was the size of a paperback. And the type said:

Are you a Reader? SONY Reader

images-10.jpgIt was a promo for a device that Sony was developing that would be the size of a paperback, as thin as a large Jersey Milk or Hershey’s bar (like that analogy, huh?), that would hold up to 160 books. I was sold. But it wasn’t out yet, so I could save my money.

Here’s what it looks like.

It’s out now in Canada (American friends saw it before us), and I’ve tried it, and I LOVE it. It’s slick-looking, like “oh, yah, I am uber-cool and technologically superior now,” and super light. As long as you have a PC at home (or admin privileges at work), a 12-year-old can do the downloading. Then, the experience of reading.

The page on the screen looks like the page in that particular book — typeface, everything. There is no glare on the screen. You can read it from an angle — yes, that woman beside you on the bus will be able to see what you’re reading, but so will you if you have to tilt it. You turn the page with a button, but there’s one on either side of the screen, so no matter how you’re lying in the hammock or on your towel, holding the Reader with your left or right hand, you can turn the page. You can change the type size to three sizes — forgot your reading glasses? Who cares! One battery charge is good for 7,500 page turns. It fits in a purse, a clutch, even down the side of a lunchbag. I am so sold.

Frugal readers? The Reader costs around $300. The very latest hardcovers cost about $15 each. So in 10 books, you’ve more than made up the cost of the Reader.

Did Sony give me one of these? I requested one to test, and I got the tester for two weeks. Do I get to keep it? No. Is Sony paying me to blog this? No. This is truly one of the coolest pieces of electronics I’ve ever used, and since everyone I know is either in a book club, or has a stack of books they’re wading through, or reads 30 pages a day, I think this is a great thing to share.

Don’t get me wrong—I love books. I work in books sometimes. Some books have to be in book form, but they don’t all have to be. In a de-cluttering mind-space and world, this thing is perfection.

Check out the actual e-book site and see how many of these books you’ve bought, or plan to, or wish you could. Then check here for a very sweet Sony-inspired review by Katie (oh my gosh, this electronic world freaks me out!) where you can learn all about it. You will be hooked.

TODAY’S QUESTION FOR YOU: would anyone like to contribute to my buy-this mother-the-James-Patterson-Special-Edition-bundle??

TODAY’S REAL QUESTION OF THE DAY: how do you decide which books to keep? What do you do with the ones you can’t keep? You can reveal all, because I have college textbooks and books I read as a kid on shelves in my house. Trixie Belden rules!

Don’t forget to check out other Works For Me Wednesday tips — there are tons!

See you tomorrow!

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5 Responses

  1. but what about the smell? You know, that funky, dusty whiff of lands far away in someone else’s imagination that always makes you sneeze…

  2. I have one, it’s awesome. 🙂

  3. The Sony Reader sounds cool!

    5 years ago, in a mission to declutter my home, I got rid of most of my books and magazine collections. I donated them to Goodwill and brought some of my magazines to my doctor’s office. I haven’t missed any of them for a minute… Oh… and I go to my library at least 2 or 3 times a month. I put books, DVDs and CDs on hold… It works for me!

  4. I heard a rumor that I am getting something similar for my birthday. Do you have any suggestions on where to find free books?

  5. Hey, I am with Anja on that fresh/old/musty/inky aroma that escapes evey time you crack a book. The Sony has a smell of leather, but I think it depends what you put the Reader in. A one-year-old glommed Luka’s DS game unit one day last week and gummed it a bit. He was very patient letting her hold it and gum it and drool on it, but when he got it away, he claimed the DS smell was gone and all he could smell was baby. Same diff. We sprayed Luka’s DS with a little of his manly Roger&Gallet spray, and all was better. Maybe Sony should partner up with an aromatherapist to create “eau du vieux réserve” or something?

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