Kindle Fire HD (& a LOT of book reviews).

I was always very "anti-Kindle", thinking they were the beginning of the end for reading and proper books. Then I went on a relaxing/sunbathing holiday for a week only taking hand luggage and two books which I got through in a couple of days.

Being the kind of person who can't sit still for very long I headed to the supermarket to scope out new books and bought a nice thick one (Maeve Binchy's Tara Road = loved it!) and a good old Danielle Steel book called The House on Hope Street which was a good yarn.

I got home and promptly stuck a Kindle at the top of my Christmas list (even though it was September) thinking how handy one would be for holidays and long journeys. If I'd had a Kindle on holiday I could have ditched one of the books I took that I didn't enjoy and picked from a whole host of others.

Being the lucky swine I am my parents surprised me by getting me a Kindle Fire HD! I'm not one for technology and gadgets and I didn't even realise it was a super duper model until my sister told me, but then I got it charging and instantly loved it.

Not only can I hop on to wifi and check my blog comments, Twitter, Facebook, browse the web and use apps such as Rightmove (daily obsession) I can also watch movies, download books, borrow books from the Kindle lending library and shop online. Brilliant!

Now it has to be said that I do go through phases of being obsessed with reading and then it wears off slightly, but since Boxing Day I have read 8 books and am onto my 9th (although a couple of the books were fairly short). Not all of them were on the Kindle, but my new gadget has definitely given me a new love of reading.

Things I like about it for reading:
- I can easily check reviews for the books before paying for them
- I am offered suggestions of books I may like and have found some future reads this way
- it's super light which means no arm ache when reading in bed (something I find with actual books)
- Jonathan can turn off the light and sleep while I read into the early hours
- I have access to the Kindle lending library which has a wide range of books available to borrow
- if I lose track of who a character is there's a way to find out who's who
- and finally, if I don't know what a word means I can press it to get a dictionary definition. I swear I'm smarter already! ;)

* I know I could refer to a dictionary or check reviews online, etc, but it's the ease of use and handiness of these features which I like!

That being said I will still pick up books from my local charity shops and I've got a stack of books that I borrowed from my friend a few months ago that I'm still ploughing through. But for night time reading and saving arm ache I'm definitely a huge Kindle fan now.

Here are the books I've read over the past few weeks. Let me know if you have read any of them!

The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared - This was the first book I downloaded onto my Kindle. It was 20p (bargain!) and had rave reviews so I was really looking forward to reading it. There were two themes running through the book; the modern day story and the history of the old man's life from when he was younger to present day. I loved the present day storyline. It was funny and random and I couldn't wait to read on. But I found some of the history bits a tad heavy going and struggled to keep going about 50% of the way through.

In A New York Minute - A super short story! I downloaded this as it was free and had a pretty cover, then read it in about 2 seconds. It was an easy to read feel-good Christmas story so if you like that sort of thing you'll like this.

You Had Me At Hello - LOVED it. I highly recommend this book to anyone who likes the "chick lit" genre without the mushiness or sappy characters. It's the only book that has made me laugh out loud over and over again. I'm really looking forward to Mhairi McFarlane's future books and hope they're as funny and well written as this one.

One Perfect Summer - I love Paige Toon books and I have almost made my way through all of her offerings (just one book to go!) I really enjoyed this book, reading it over a short period of time, although the ending left me wanting more and wondering what happened next...

One Perfect Christmas - enter One Perfect Christmas which is a short story follow up to One Perfect Summer. It was very satisfying to read more about the characters in the first book but at £1.99 to download this I felt that as this book was so short it would have been better to include it at the end of the original book. Or make this one into a full length book. Anyway, I enjoyed it nonetheless.

Johnny Be Good - This is another Paige Toon book (I told you I like her books!) I started it last year but couldn't get into it so I put it down and picked up something else, but gave it another go recently. Although I wasn't too keen on the main character I was gripped by the story and found the whole plot really interesting to read. Hearing about what a rock star gets up to makes for an interesting plot! However, I was fuming about the ending. I felt like there was no point to the rest of the book and hoped there was a follow up...

Baby Be Mine - enter Baby Be Mine. I was so happy when I realised that Baby Me Mine was a sequel to Johnny Be Good. As mentioned above, I found the main character a little cold and unlikeable at times but I enjoyed the book, liked the other characters and am glad to have some closure!

The Pollyanna Plan - Talli Roland is an author I hadn't heard of before I spotted some of her books in the Kindle lending library. I downloaded this one for free after checking out the positive reviews for it. The characters (especially the main male character) were really likeable, the story moved at a nice quick pace and the message within the story was a really positive and thought provoking one. I'm going to check out Talli's other books and I hope they're as good as this one!

Phew, this turned out to be a bit of a long blog post. If you made it this far give yourself a pat on the back and leave a comment to let me know what you're reading at the moment!
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