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May 30, 2013

E-readers come in handy when traveling

I recently took a trip to California and it was the perfect time to make use of my e-reader. While I’m still devoted to actual books, I must admit that traveling with a thin, lightweight computerized device beats dragging along one or two bulky hard copy titles. The only issue is finding the right e-books to take on the airplane.

I made use of the Four County website called the “Download Zone.” I knew not to even attempt to find a best-seller because the one drawback to the system is that new titles are rarely available. There’s usually a long waiting list. It’s best to find titles that are over a year old so there’s no problem obtaining them. If you’re that set on reading a best-selling e-book you might as well buy it online.

I decided to limit my choices to biographies because I tend to read a lot of them and am likely to find them stimulating (I hate to use the word “interesting” because that usually means you don’t like something but don’t want to criticize it). The system also limits you to three titles so it’s not like you can check out 15 and just assume you’ll like two or three.

The books I ended up choosing turned out to be good ones. I like both Johnny Carson and Larry King and there were biographies of each available. I would have picked a third but made the mistake of choosing an autobiography of Ralph Branca (the infamous Brooklyn Dodgers’ pitcher who gave up the pennant-winning home run to the Giants’ Bobby Thomson in 1951) on downloadable audio (which I don’t have). Please be forewarned that if you make that mistake you’re stuck with it. You can’t return an e-checkout early.

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