Re-Kindling A Relationship

About a year ago I picked up a Kobo Libra2 to replace my worn-out Kindle. I could get a good deal on the new Kobo, and the Kindle had pissed me off too many times that month. Seeing a chance to escape the Amazon garden, I jumped over the wall and into Kobo-Land.

The side buttons were a feature I didn’t know I needed. The screen was beautiful. Responsive, silk-smooth, lit. Overdrive integration, what a blessing! And the ability to sort my sideloaded books into collections on the device? Glorious.

Ah, right; my sideloaded books. So many books from Kickstarters, Baen CDs, StoryBundles, HumbleBundles, RumbleBumbleBundles. Free epubs for signing up to a newsletter. Free epubs for Patreon members. Free epubs from Project Gutenberg.

This isn’t the time or place to talk about removing DRM from books or converting formats or any of that stuff. You can Lycos that if you want.

Maybe not that many, around 200 titles or so. Certainly nothing compared to the amount of books I bought from Amazon which…oh, shit.

After some research, swearing, and experimentation, titles I used to read on my Kindle that now I could read on the Libra2. Never again would I have to go through this, I thought. My books are moved. Maybe some formatting issues exist, but whatever. I can work around that. My magazines are moved. They are terrible to read on the Libra2, which is a bummer. My library of non-Amazon books are just perfect. And the books purchased from Kobo are, well, non-exisitant.

Even when a book dropped in price for a sale, even when a book I wanted to read since forever popped up on the Kobo store, I couldn’t do it. No force on Earth could make me log in to my account, add a credit card, and buy a Kobo title.

I’m swimming in Amazon gift cards. People give them to me all the time. Birthdays, holidays, work related gifts, random strangers wanting to make a good impression. My gift card balance is healthier than the market cap for most alt-coins. It’s nuts.

And that bizarre gift card stockpile made it easy to buy books for the Kindle. The books that were now a struggle to convert, add to Calibre, move to the Kobo, all while hoping there wasn’t a firmware update that broke compatibility for precious days.

As much as I loved the reading experience on the Libra2, I sold it off cheap to an aquaintence looking to replace their old Kobo Whatever. While I took that money, traded in my forgotten, dusty Kindle, and upgraded. So now a new Kindle Paperwhite Signature sits in the corner of my desk, charging wirelessly, waiting.

But now I’m back to a familiar problem; what about all these sideloaded books? Well, that’s for next time.

About the Author

Eli Jones is a BI Developer and speculative fiction writer living in the Columbia Gorge.