Thursday, April 22, 2010

Is Kindle for old folks?

In Publisher's Lunch today:
Following Engadget's report in early April, yesterday Target confirmed that they will start selling Kindle as of April 25. But they'll start with just their downtown Minneapolis store and south Florida (which apparently holds 102 Targets), "rolling out to more Target stores later this year." (Does that confirm that the target Kindle demographic is retirees?)
Oldladysayswha? I don't want my ereader to multifunction as a video game or mini TV or BlackBerry flavored all-purpose brain dildo. I just want to read books on the thing. Though I do periodically revisit In the Night Kitchen, most of the books I've read since my ninth birthday were not illustrated with full color pictures. The instant library gratification and simplicity of the Kindle has more than doubled my readerly consumption since I got it, and I've been reading mostly classics. I felt a surge of hope that this would be the dynamic for younger readers, too, but I fear the iPad has so much other stuff going on, it won't encourage reading straight up old books that just, you know, tell stories'n'junk.

Bottom line, I just don't see iPad as an ereader like Nook and Kindle. I see it as a super cool lightweight entertainment system, and if you really must read a fusty old book, well, there's an app for that.

Or maybe I'm just getting old.

This from the Wall Street Journal:
During a recent episode of "The Colbert Report," Stephen Colbert gushed about the iPad and showed the cover of Newsweek, which carried the headline "What's so great about iPad? Everything." He then flipped to the back of the magazine to show a black and white Kindle ad. Poking fun at the pitch, Mr. Colbert said: "Oh look, the screen has both black and gray."
Ouch. Next thing you know, I'll be yelling at those damn kids to get out of my yard. And reading my Kindle with horn rimmed glasses on a fake pearl chain.


Colleen Thompson said...

One of the second grade kiddos I work with told me her best friend has a Kindle and she wants one, too.

At least until she sees an IPad!

This middle-aged reader loves her Kindle. I go back and forth between it and old-school books and find both satisfying, but prefer the Kindle when I'm traveling.

Dad Lonnquist said...

Of course Kindle is for us old folks. As you well know when I arrived home from open heart surgery #2, there you were , Kindle in hand to make sure I read my way through Cardio Rehab. And guess what? Us old folks love it! Even though bowling on our new Wii is full color and good exercise, reading on the old B & W Kindle is where we spend the most free time. On the other hand, maybe 75 really is the new 35 and your old father really isn't ALL THAT OLD! So bring on the Kindle, the full color Wii won't "bowl us over." Welcome to all of your new Paloggers (that's short hand for Pal-Bloggers) see how hip the old folks are? You young whipper snappers do remember being "hip" don't you? Be Fantastic. Dad

Joni Rodgers said...

Dad, I think loading your Kindle was an education in itself for me. I ended up reading and loving your Guy de Maupassant short story collection last week. Now working through the Sherlock Holmes adventures.

Mylène said...

Middle-aged and love my Kindle. iPad will be fun for some things, I imagine. Non-fiction, especially. But say, for example, I am reading a wonderful new horror novel by Kathryn Patterson. I can think of nothing more likely to break the tension, to diminish and squander my fright, than turning the iPad sideways, clicking on a link to learn more about the composition of blood, or seeing the image pop up of a dread character reduced in size to fit something smaller than a shoebox and in no way as horrifying as the horrible thing Kat made me conjure in my head.

Kathryn Paterson said...

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Oh my, I just saw this! Mylene, that's hilarious--and very generous. I'm not sure how much "horror" there is in my horror (maybe the subject of another post).

But on THIS subject, where I could see this multifunction reader being GOOD is for graphic novels. I think that for the newer media (digital/hypertext endeavors), it could rock, although, like you all, I would prefer just the words.

Ironic, I'm just approaching middle age and I don't even have a Kindle. Hardbacks and Paperbacks for me, baby, but I'm always willing to try new things.


To subscribe to BtO, click "Subcribe to: Posts" at the bottom of the page and then "Subscribe to this feed."

Want to borrow a cup of content? Feel free to share our link or a brief quote with your friends. But please e-mail for permission to reprint or repost our work elsewhere, and always add an attribution and a link back to our site.

We welcome your feedback. Feel free to post comments. PR and outreach from publishers and published authors should be sent to:

Boxing the Octopus: all content copyright 2008 Colleen Thompson and Joni Rodgers all rights reserved.

We welcome payola in the form of pies, cakes, neatly folded laundry and free books!

In accordance with FTC regulations, we're required to inform readers that we receive books from publishers, authors, and PR folk for review. We'd like to receive money via an offshore bank account, but that hasn't happened yet. When my dad was in radio back in the '50s, a local baker used to sneak over in the dead of night and fill the back seat of his car with bread and pastries. We would NOT object to this. Please review our review policy here. And let us know if we should leave the car outside the garage tonight.

Peace, love, and statutory compliance ~