Reading has become a important part of my life. When I was a kid I think I read books at a fairly normal rate for a kid of my age. I didn’t read a huge amount of books but there were a lot of kids that read less than me as well. Then for a long time I didn’t really read much at all, except for books related to my work of course.
However, in 2011 I started to read again and in the last half of the year book reading really took off for me. The renaissance for my book reading is probably quite connected to me first installing Kindle on my mobile phone and then getting a tablet and installing both Kindle and Aldiko on that one. The convenience of being able to read when I wanted to and where I wanted to without having to remember, and have the hassle, to drag around physical books was probably what tipped the scale.
Still a Sci-Fi freak
My taste in books hasn’t changed much over the years though. The vast majority of books I read are still Science Fiction or Fantasy books. Since October 2011 I ‘m a member of Goodreads and keep a catalog of books that I have read there since my rekindled interest in reading along with ratings of each book and personal notes/reviews for many of them.
Where to buy
Most of the books I read I get from either Amazon (Kindle) or from Baen Ebooks. A few I’ve gotten from other sources such as eBooks.com but mostly they come from Amazon or Baen. The latter I only discovered at the beginning of this year (2012) and I was really happy about it since it specializes in Science Fiction and Fantasy and I found a lot of books that I wanted to read there and which I couldn’t find on Amazon or eBooks.com. The books from Baen is DRM-free as well which is a plus although I have to say that the DRM on Kindle have never stepped in my way so far.
What to read on
The majority of the reading I do on my tablet. When I have to I use the Kindle app for Windows 8 but I try to avoid that as much as possible. Not because I dislike Amazon or Kindle in general but because they made a real shitjob of their Windows 8 app end they do not seem to be inclined to do something about the various issues with that app. When I can I use Book Bazaar Reader instead. Occasionally I read a few pages on my phone as well, like when waiting for an appointment, for a flight or something like that but the small screen of the phone is a bit of a limitation.
Managing the collection
Naturally, given my other interests, I wanted a way to keep track of my growing collection on my computer(s). Collectorz (I use the Movie Collectorz software as a complement to DVD Profiler for my on-line management of my film collection) also has Collectorz Book Collector software which I looked at. In the end I fell for using Collectorz for its strong web features and Calibre e-book Management for my detailed management in the same way as I use Collectorz Movie Collector and DVD Profiler for my film collection. Calibre is free, simple, lightweight and does most things you really need. In addition to managing the actual collection you can set it up as a server which you can connect to from most mobile devices as well as web browsers. Thanks to Collectorz my Book Collection is also available on the web.
I always rate the books that I have read on Goodreads and almost always I write a short note about what I thought about the book as well. Some time ago Goodreads introduced a feature by which you could automatically post the Goodreads review to your WordPress blog. So I started to post my “notes” to my blog. Since they now showed up on my blog I tried to write a little more than a few words and, viola, I started to make reviews.
Of course, these reviews are in no way aspiring to be professional reviews. As with the rest of the blog, they express my thoughts and opinions which I write as part of my hobby interests and should not be taken as anything else.