— top e-books, readers and accessories —





About the Top 5 List


The Top 5 Lists featured are gathered form the The New York Times Book Review.

The list is divided into fiction and non-fiction sections; each contain ten to twenty titles. Each week the he New York Times Book Review receives 750 to 1000 books from authors and publishers in the mail of which 20 to 30 are chosen for review.

The selection process is based on finding books that are important and notable, as well as discovering new authors whose books stand above the crowd. Expanded lists that show additional titles are available online through the Book Review website. Visit the New York Times for more details and complete listings.

E-Book and Reader, a Brief History


Some of the early e-books were pioneered by the Gutenberg Project, started by Michael S. Hart in 1971. At first e-books were produced with a niche, small, targeted audience in mind. Some of the early examples included manuals, hardware tech specs, etc. Generally, the e-books were produced as Adobe PDF files or in some of the broad text file formats. The readers, at first were one-format based, in an attempt to control the market and further fragmented the market.

The publishing industry become engaged in the format battle, not agreeing on format standards and instead betting on the various formats promoted by the manufacturers and the software makers. The initial split of software makers, OEMs, publishers, was further extended by another party entering the fray. The authors rejected by the publishing houses were increasingly offering their work online through e-book sites, for exposure and public acknowledgement, sometimes forming online publishing clubs.

Starting with 2009, marketing models for e-books were developed and major manufacturers entered the market strongly supporting multiple formats and offering true choice.

Amazon's introduction of the Kindle in 2007, followed by Barnes and Noble's Nook offer unique opportunities as they are offered by a book merchant as an added value to their primary offering, books, and already having a well established online distribution method. The introduction of the iPad in 2010, with it's innovative interface and multimedia options promises to change the publishing industry once again.

Best Choice E-book Readers


Amazon Kindle

High-Contrast E Ink Screen

50% better contrast. The clearest text and sharpest images with latest E Ink Pearl display

Lighter Than a Paperback

At only 8.5 ounces and 1/3 of an inch thin, Kindle is lighter than a paperback and thinner than a magazine.

Holds an Entire Library

Kindle's storage can carry up to 3,500 books.

Battery Life of Up to One Month

A single charge lasts up to one month with wireless off. Keep wireless always on and go for up to three weeks without recharging.

Share Meaningful Passages

Share meaningful passages with friends and family with built-in Twitter and Facebook integration.

Massive Selection

Over 775,000 books, including 107 of 111 New York Times Best Sellers, plus audiobooks, periodicals and blogs.

Free, Out-of-Copyright Books

Over 1.8 million free, out-of-copyright, pre-1923 books are available such as Pride and Prejudice.

Read Everywhere with Whispersync

Your Kindle books can be read on your Kindle, iPhone, iPad, PC, Mac, Android device, and BlackBerry. Our Whispersync technology syncs your place across devices, so you can pick up where you left off.


With Text-to-Speech, Kindle can read English-language content out loud to you.

And More...

Apple iPad


Fingerprint-resistant oleophobic coating with 9.7-inch (diagonal) LED-backlit glossy widescreen Multi-Touch display with IPS technology.

Audio Playback

Wide variety of audio formats supported: HE-AAC (V1), AAC (16 to 320 Kbps), Protected AAC (from iTunes Store), MP3 (16 to 320 Kbps), MP3, and more, with user-configurable maximum volume limit.

Video Playback

Built-in support for 1024 by 768 pixels with Dock Connector to VGA Adapter; 576p and 480p with Apple Component AV Cable; 576i and 480i with Apple Composite AV Cable H.264 video up to 720p, 30 frames per second.

Battery Life of Up to One Month

A single charge lasts up to one month with wireless off. Keep wireless always on and go for up to three weeks without recharging.

Get Email on your iPad

Integrated email with a wide variety of supported attachment types.

Multiple Language Support

Language, keyboard, closed-captioned content and dictionary support for all major language groups.

Free, Out-of-Copyright Books

Over 1.8 million free, out-of-copyright, pre-1923 books are available such as Pride and Prejudice.

Application support

Thousand of apps available with more coming out every day. All available through iTunes.

And More...

Picking a Reader


There are a lot of features from touchscreens to E-Ink, to WiFi or 3G connectivity, to the Read to Me feature on the Kindle 2, that will help your e-book reader become a true reading companion. We tried to list the top features in our side-by-side grid and give you the best way to compare features in each of the readers featured.


E-books are relatively new on the market, so prices are likely to be high. Especially for the models that feature TouchScreen technology or a lot of custom software. Prices can also fluctuate greately.


Content availability is a major factor influencing your purchase. To help with your selection we listed the available content types for each devices featured and how many different types of book files they can support.

Tech Support

In purchasing your device please consider all the available technical support options. In purchasing an e-reader consider the ability to reach a customer service rep over the phone. We listed the tech support options for the vendors we feature. Before you purchase an e-book reader, decide what kind of support you would like and consider what you can expect.

Tech Support

Support Contacts

Amazon / Kindle: 1-800-201-7575 Apple / iPad: 1-800-275-2273