My girlfriend reads on her Kindle a lot — and it lead us to a very funny conversation about ebooks. As we laughed and laughed, and enjoyed a spontaneous moment somewhere in the 21st century, it made me think about the way that we read books now. And also about how it’s changed…
It was sometime after midnight, and I was exhausted as I crawled into bed. But my girlfriend wasn’t ready to put down her Kindle yet. “I’m at 98%,” she explained. She was engrossed in another ebook, and she’d finally reached it’s dramatic conclusion…
My girlfriend reads several books a week, so she tries to stick to the free section of Amazon’s Kindle Store. She’s read dozens of original novels, many by amateur authors who are writing their very first ebook. When she finds a good one, she’ll often read all the way through in one sitting. I respected that, so I didn’t want to interrupt her.
“It’s a science-fiction fantasy,” she said hurriedly — then went back to her reading. But that obviously still left me with a lot of unanswered questions. Before I drifted off the sleep, I still wanted one last piece of conversation. “At least tell me the title…”
She had a little trouble even remembering where to look for the title on her Kindle, but she finally found it at the top of the screen. “Cloak,” she said.
“Oh…” I said.
And then the word hung in the air….
It was like we were both considering how little the title really told me. In the friendly silence, it was begging for a wise-crack. And then finally, I broke the silence.
“I hear he wrote a sequel. It was called…Chair.”
It was quiet for a second — until we both busted up laughing. And then we laughed at how hard we were laughing. And then I tried to milk the joke even further. “I heard there was also a pre-quel. It was called…Coverlet.” And we laughed some more…
I love those magic minutes at the end of the day, so I understand that it’s the perfect time to read on a Kindle. It feels like “extra” time, where the day’s business has already begun falling away into yesterday. The Kindle delivers an endless supply of new stories, in some kind of science-fiction future where novels are free. But it’s also the perfect time for a silly joke.
“In his first draft, the book was called Sock,” I teased. “But then the author decided ‘I need something more dramatic…'”
To be fair, my girlfriend really enjoyed the book — and other reviewers on Amazon seemed to agree. “I was blown away by the sheer depth of the author’s imagination,” wrote one reader on Amazon. “This is one creative, original book. I was so excited that I let my daughter read the chapters as I finished them… The characters are quirky, well-developed, and loveable.”
And of course, I told my girlfriend that the book’s one-word title had already given me more laughter than I’d ever expected. But the next morning, she told me that she’d looked up the book on Amazon, and the author was, in fact, going to write a sequel to Cloak. “It’s called, Dagger,” she said.
And then we giggled and giggled and laughed some more…