Thursday, December 30, 2010

I've Been Kindled

This is me reading my Kindle. I love it like whoa. I was sort of an anti-ereader person last year but the more I had to wait for a title to free up at the library, and the more my house got stuffed with books, and the more I looked at the economics, the more it made sense to ask for a Kindle. The Wife got it for me for Christmas. I'm reading The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest on it right now (which sucks, by the way), and that leads me to a story...

When I purchased that book (with an Amazon gift card, bang!) The Wife was jealous because she wanted to read it and there was pretty much no way I was going to just give her my Kindle for three days or whatever. But then we had another Christmas to attend--The Wife's side. And at that Christmas, my mother-in-law presented The Wife and I with one of those It's For Both of You presents. I let The Wife open it because I'm chivalrous. We were warned:

"Now, if you don't want this, I'll buy it back from you," Mother-in-law said. I was intrigued.

The Wife opened it and it was...(you already know, don't you, you anticipatory reader)...a Kindle!

Mother-in-law was apologetic because she'd found out a day or two before that The Wife had already given me one, so she felt bad that I hadn't gotten a gift. I quickly corrected her. I had been given a gift, and it was the greatest gift of all--the gift of not having to share.

Now, there are two things I'd like to share (see what I did there?), one of which wouldn't be possible (or at least very difficult to do) without a Kindle. If you've read The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo or any of the subsequent books, you know that the author is (was?), for some reason, obsessed with telling the reader exactly what his characters eat. If I've learned anything about Sweden it's that they eat a lot of sandwiches and drink a lot of coffee. They drink coffee so often that I was curious just how many times the word "coffee" appeared in the third installment of the series. So I used the search function and discovered that there are 103 uses of the word in the book. The book, in its paper form, is about 600 pages, which means that, on average, coffee is explicitly mentioned every sixth page. Here's an idea: how about having someone drink a Coke?

Also, you can browse the Kindle Store and search for titles and whatnot, just like on the Net. So, for research purposes, I looked up books on "psi"( paranormal ability and the like). I got a bunch of books and I clicked on a few and I found this gem, summarized thus:

Chronicles of Psi – Book I – A New Beginning

In a world that has reinvented itself from the ashes of a ruined civilization comes a child of The Foretelling who must find his way to save mankind from further destruction. Along his way the forces of his world conspire against him to destroy him or gain the power he wields for their own selfish purposes. He must learn his destiny and how to use his gift before the world is ravaged and destroyed yet again.

A young girl, trained as an assassin, is commissioned to protect the boy, yet finds herself embroiled in this war of politics and subtlety even as she leaves her guild training grounds. Her greatest challenge lie in finding him in time before the others seeking to destroy him do.

This story begins the saga of the Chronicles of Psi, where the rare gift of psionics or mind powers called “Psi” are used by human and creatures alike to the benefit or destruction of those around them. This post apocalyptic world is filled with terrible creatures and forces struggling for power over the world.


Favorite parts:

1. The whole first sentence, which almost makes a little sense. Also, what good is "The Foretelling" if it failed to stop the destruction of the world the first time? Are we just supposed to not care about the first mankind? You know, the one that was totally wiped out before this foretold child showed up after the fact?

2. I like how the "forces of his world" are unsure whether they want to kill him or steal his powers. Nothing like indecisive forces.

3. Who commissions an assassin to protect somebody? Does the commissioner value irony over success? Maybe this world should be wiped out too.

4. What does a "war of subtlety" look like? Do people raise their eyebrows cryptically at one another until someone gives up in confusion?

5. If the assassin's "greatest challenge" is in finding the kid, then what's the point of sending an assassin? Why not send someone who's really good at hide and seek?

6. Psychic powers can apparently be used for good or evil. Huh. Who knew?

And a bonus for the new year: Glamour shot!!!



Are you entranced by my beguiling gaze?

10 comments:

Adam said...

I bought a Nook a little while back and am absolutely loving it. I try to buy doorstop books to read on it. It's much nice reading a 1000 page anthology or omnibus on a device that weighs a few ounces versus a book that is a Class C Weapon.

Paul Michael Murphy said...

Hadn't thought of that, but true. Although I'm pretty sure I've never read a 1000 page book. Even The Stand comes up a little short, I think.

Miss Remmers said...

New to your blog and I absolutely LOVE this post. The tone jumps of the page - I may have to share it with my 9th graders when school resumes and we begin the ever epic battle of deciphering tone in writing! Fantastic!

Kelly said...

Enjoy the Kindle! It already makes you look more studious.

Anita said...

I love this post! I'm reading PATIENT ZERO on my iPad. The book is so freaking unnerving. I didn't get to sleep until 2AM.

Paul Michael Murphy said...

Wife's reading The Room. And crying. Which means nothing, she cried watching Tangled.

Paul Michael Murphy said...

Thanks, Miss Remmers. And welcome. Here's hoping you can ride out my somewhat lengthy periods of inactivity.

Anita said...

I think you just posted again right away so people wouldn't be looking at your photo.

I just wrote a column about ROOM. It's a very unique book. I didn't think I'd like the second half, but I did. I cried near the end at some sentence about Jesus and John playing together.

Tracy Edward Wymer said...

The Kindle is great. I've had mine for only a few months now. Just read Milo and Skellig on it.

Tracy Edward Wymer said...

In the picture: Lady behind you (the one staring at the camera) looks like she's waiting for water to squirt you in the face from the trick camera she planted. She looks suspicious.