Monthly Archives: February 2011

Kindle Paging

Apparently lots of folks were annoyed by the lack of Kindle ebook displays that referenced only something called ‘locations’ rather than the page numbers of the corresponding print edition. I’m sympathetic with the notion that page numbers are a relic of now-outmoded print books, and something new and better might take their place. But ‘locations’? The percentage complete bar is nice, but instead of locations, why not just display the number of words? (E.g., 15,000 out of 120,000.) That would have been something lots of folks, at least writers and publishers, were already familiar with.

In any case Amazon has bowed to consumer demand and installed page number displays in the latest version of Kindle software, which I installed last night. It works, sorta. But you have to press the menu button in order to see the page numbers (and location numbers) for any given screen display. Otherwise is just displays the percentage complete bar. It should be an option — display them all the time, or hide until pressing Menu, etc. Should be easy to implement. Maybe next update.

2010 Reading

2010 was a relatively off year; I think I may have read a couple dozen books altogether, over the course of the year. I’m not proud of this; I wish I could keep up more than I do, especially since I’m running a website all about books! I feel like a — well, you may imagine an appropriate simile here. I have at least updated the thumbnail cover images in the right sidebar here with the most significant books I read this past year. I hope 2011 will provide more reading time. Years vary; my gold standard is 100 books a year, which I’ve approached but not exceeded in… a couple decades now. That’s not to say I don’t *sample* many many books throughout the year… But like many others, I suspect, my to-read stacks greatly exceed my available time to read them through. I will find a way, eventually.

Elizabeth Hand’s Swan of Tuonela

Perhaps I should post more frequent, shorter posts. So let me do this, briefly, late in the evening before I retire: the best story I’ve read in the past month is, catching up a bit since it’s a story published a year and a half ago, nearly, Elizabeth Hand’s “The Far Shore”, first published in the October/November 2009 issue of The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. It is to Jean Sibelius’ “The Swan of Tuonela” what Black Swan is to Tchaikovsky’s “Swan Lake”. And, if I were pitching it to a Hollywood executive, I would say, “The Far Shore” is, well, about a recluse in the woods, but it’s like Black Swan with a happy ending! Sorta ;)