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Ron Radosh

Vacation with a Kindle

June 12th, 2009 - 11:54 am

It’s that time of year. At least it is for me. I’m leaving on a week and a half vacation, along with my Kindle—and yes, my wife. So I won’t be blogging for that time. The only internet access I’ll have is very slow band and limited, enough, hopefully, to retrieve e-mail.  So I will resume sometime around June 27th, or possibly once or twice before.

For those of you in the Los Angeles area, Allis and I will be speaking on June 24th at the David Horowitz Freedom Center evening reception. The details may be found here . I hope some of you can. We will be talking about our new book, A Safe Haven: Harry S. Truman and the Founding of Israel. I trust there will be a good discussion, and I’m certain those of you who read my blog and are around L.A. will add to it.

Some thoughts on the Kindle, a relatively new purchase for me. The pros: no packing of heavy books when on vacation! I have bought four books I want to read. I already started one of them, and find that it is as easy to find oneself fully immersed in the book content as it is when reading an actual hardcover book. You can mark passages you wish to return to, and makes notes. Some people have complained that you never know how far along you are in the book.  Because you can vary typeface, there are no page numbers. But you can find a line on the bottom indicating the percentage of the book you have gone through. The other big pro, of course, is that if your book storage situation at home is at the time of no more room for growth, as is mine, this is a saving grace. I no longer have to worry about trying to fit in more bookcases.

When we moved two years ago, I got rid of 600 books- yes 600- and now have almost that many more that I have bought in those two years.  Now the cons: It is potentially bad for authors. We are now in the process of a book tour that will extend over the summer and fall months. If everyone buys books on the Kindle, it means that there will be no more book signings, and even worse, no more bookstores! Even though most of us probably buy our books online, it is nice to see what’s out there and look at the books in a store before deciding what to purchase. Most indie bookstores are already disappearing; soon the chains will be gone. If you have recently gone into a Borders, you know immediately that they are on the verge of bankruptcy. There iare hardly any books in the store, especially when you compare what they have in stock to B and N, which somehow seems to be packed every time I enter one.

I don’t know what the answer is, and I hope the book industry figures out a way to adjust. Anyway, adieu for now. I look forward to some good r and r, and some good Kindling.

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