We should never stop educating ourselves about emergency preparedness. If you’re like me, after a while the bookshelves get filled with dozens of survival-related books. Which book would you carry in case you need to evacuate or Bug Out? Well, how about every one of them?
A few months ago I purchased an Amazon Kindle 3. This amazing ebook reader has helped me read more books than ever before – and with careful browsing and shopping, I’ve even saved a few dollars too.
The Amazon Kindle 3 – put your survival library in your pocket
Why get an Amazon Kindle 3?
1. It’s small enough to carry everywhere. The Kindle can fit in your jacket pocket or even your back jeans pocket (although honestly, don’t keep it there).
2. It’s lightweight. When I first got my Kindle, I was very happy with the way it felt in my hands. It’s just 8.5 ounces, quite a bit less than most paperbacks.
3. Fantastic screen. The Kindle screen uses a technology called E Ink Pearl, which is very similar to paper in terms of readability. It’s different from the type of screen that you get on your phone or computer. In fact, the screen works best outdoors during the daytime – just like paper!
4. Amazing battery life. My iPhone will last me a day at best, but the Kindle will last up to one month (one month!) on just a single charge. This makes it doubly useful in disaster situations if you are cut off from your home for extended periods of time.
5. Ample space. You probably won’t read 3,500 books in your lifetime – but if you want, that’s how many books you can fit in your Amazon Kindle.
6. A good bookstore. The Kindle gives you access to 850,000 books in Amazon’s Kindle Store. Not only that, there are 1.8 million public domain books that you can read as well. Here’s the best thing about the Kindle Store – you can read the first chapter of every single book for free. This is great for sampling and especially deciding whether it’s worth buying a book. I’ve read more first chapters in the past few months than ever before. Most books are around $10.
There are 3 current versions of the Amazon Kindle:
1. Kindle (6inch screen) WiFi – $139
2. Kindle (6inch screen) WiFi+3G – $189 (you can download books wherever there’s AT&T coverage)
3. Kindle DX (9.7inch screen) WiFi+3G – $379
Protecting Your Kindle
When I first got my Kindle, I carried it around in a simple padded envelope. I took the Kindle out of the envelope, whenever I wanted to read. This approach worked well, until I dropped the Kindle and broke the screen.
My advice is once you have a Kindle, do invest a little bit of money to protect it. A good waterproof case is the M-Edge Leisure Kindle Jacket. It will allow you to read on your Kindle through a clear vinyl cover, and the back flips over to protect the front of the Kindle screen. It even comes with generous pockets so you can slip in the Kindle charger or an optional LED reading light.
M-Edge Leisure Jacket waterproof case for Kindle 3
Content for your Amazon Kindle
Great! Now that you have a Kindle and a way to protect it, what should you put in it?
Here are some recommendations to get you started:
1. SAS Urban Survival Handbook by John ‘Lofty” Wiseman.
2. The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman by Timothy Ferriss. Some quick fixes, some interesting skills.
3. When All Hell Breaks Loose by Cody Lundin.
4. How to Survive the End of the World as We Know It: Tactics, Techniques, and Technologies for Uncertain Times by James Wesley, Rawles.
Aside from books that you can purchase from the Amazon Kindle Store, this device also has support for other formats, for example:
– TXT (text files)
– Audible (for audio books)
– Mobipocket (MOBI, without Digital Rights Management)
You can also convert some file formats like HTML, JPEG, GIF, PNG, BMP for viewing on the Kindle. This means that you can keep other documents which may prove valuable, for example :
– Local maps
– Emergency phone numbers and contact information
– First Aid guides
– User manuals and tutorials ( such as Guide to Lockpicking, US Army Survival Manual, FeMA Guide to Citizen Preparedness)
– All sorts of lists
– Copies of your important IDs and documents
Basically anything textual and visual will work.