[Must Haves] The Kindle App for iPad and smart phones

MbM_MustHaves_KindleAppI’m not sure how I missed this new bit of software technology (especially when it’s the screen saver on my Kindle!!!) but boy am I delighted to have finally caught up with the times! The timing could not be even more perfect seeing as one of my resolutions for 2014 is to read more outside my research material and with our two trips coming up too.

I have the old Kindle ebook reader from when it first came out in the UK (the Kindle Touch, which I believe is now discontinued and being replaced with the Paperwhite model) and even though I still prefer books to electronic gadgets, the Kindle is and has been my primary on-the-go reading buddy….long before I had my iPad or iPhone! While it still does the job just fine and is most convenient when commuting/travelling, I must say I was pretty excited when I learnt of the Kindle App iPad (also available on most smart phones and tablets) I’ve never really used the iPad as a reading device but more for emails, social media, blogging and browsing the internet etc. So having a secondary device….one that is in colour….is pretty handy! It’s great knowing you have an alternative option should you realise you’ve forgotten to take your Kindle with you! Okay, granted that it doesn’t have Kindle’s anti-glare, or the choice of buying books through the app or any nifty ‘shelving’ options (from what I’ve heard), but being able to access your Kindle books from more devices than one is a Godsend especially when it automatically syncs it all for you….down to the last page you’ve read on your Kindle! Plus you have the option of colour screen if you have books or magazines that are more pictorial. And it does save me from having to upgrade to a much fancier Kindle too!

So yea, my verdict – it’s free, so why the heck not? :) Like I said, having options is always a good idea…..especially if you only have the one reading device between you and your better half, which means we won’t have to fight over it while we’re away on our holidays :D I’ve already added a few new Kindle books to the library since downloading the app and have it all synced so that its available on my iPad too. Here’s to more reading….and less excuses! xx

[Book of the Month] Hyperbole and a Half

MbM_Loves-Books_Jan-1One of my resolutions this year was to read more; actually I do read a lot but since taking on the PhD three years ago, 90% of my reading list is work-related and anything outside that would be accounted for only during holidays or while commuting – even that is limited! It’s the one thing I do love and have loved. It’s the one time I can completely loose myself into the depths of enthralling pieces of story-telling; the one time I can be transported from reality into another world (it always helps having an imaginative mind!). Quite sad really, that reading anything other than research material has to be ‘squeezed in’ which is why I’ve got to find a way to set aside time and read more. I did in fact sign up to a bloggers Book Club last autumn and failed miserably to attend the first few meet ups due to work commitments (and being away too!) so this year is a new start and my target is one book per month – it sounds pathetic I know but that’s what happens when you’re overworked with very little spare time to read!

So anyway, this month’s book is Hyperbole And a Half by Allie Brosh which was in fact selected as the book to read for the next Book Club meet-up. You may have already heard of it as it has taken by storm across the US and made its way over here, but if you haven’t I can honestly say it’s been a refreshingly good read. It’s witty, whimsical, satirical, and as the title in itself suggests, outrageously imaginative and delusional too! The book is a compilation of Allie’s popular webcomics you find on her blog (also titled the same) where she narrates the various events in her life through images she drew in paintbrush…..yep, Paintbrush! I have to hand it to her, although intentionally crude and child-like, her cartoons are pure genius and definitely adds to the hilarity of the stories.

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What I love most about the book, or her style of writing, is that it’s brutally honest (okay, it’s somewhat exaggerated in places but that’s just down to her wildly imaginative mind) and straightforwardness about her encounters, experiences and challenges in life, not to mention the way she over analyses and battles with her every thought that results in further mayhem……..something I can totally relate to! ;) The best rib-tickling stories for me were ‘God of Cake’, the introduction of the ‘Simple Dog’, ‘The Hot Sauce Debacle’ and ‘This is why I’ll never be an Adult’…..whether it’s because I’m able to share in most of her far-fetched ideologies, thoughts and insanity, I’m not sure but it definitely got me cracking up. So, while it may be more for the nerdy, creative and ludicrously imaginative type I would still urge you all to give her work a go as there’s bound to be something that will hit your funny bone! If you’re not sure about buying the book then definitely start by reading the stories over on her blog.

I probably would not have come across Allie Brosh’s work myself so I’m delighted that it was recommended by the bookclubbers…..can’t wait to catch up with them this weekend and hear everyone else’s thoughts on it. Happy Reading! xx

MbM_Loves-Books_Jan-5  [Image Credit: ©Made by Molu]

PS. If you are a blogger in London or Edinburgh and fancy joining the Bloggers Book Club, you can find out all the details needed to sign up here.