Exceptional E-Book Readers

Lots of people think an e-book reader would be the perfect gift for someone in their life!

One told us, "I would buy one for my sister."

Another said, "Probably my aunt, sister, probably everybody I know."

But choosing one can be tricky. Barnes and Noble offers two different Nooks, and Amazon has four different Kindles - not to mention readers from makers like Kobo and Sony. And there are tablets that offer electronic books, too.

Paul Reynolds with Consumer Reports says, "You can read e-books on a tablet, but a dedicated e-book reader is lighter, easier to hold in one hand, has a longer battery life and crisper type. All of these will make a difference in hour after hour of reading."

Among its tests, Consumer Reports assesses how fast each reader can turn a page. Some are really fast, while others are slower.

Another test - looking at how easy they are to read in different lighting. The best readers have no trouble with bright light - good for reading outside. If you're going to be reading in the dark, a reader with a built-in light is a real plus.

Paul explains, "While there are other manufacturers, your choice probably boils down to a Nook or a Kindle. Those are the brands with the best combination of performance, price, and features."

At the top of the ratings? The $120 Barnes and Noble Nook Simple Touch with GlowLight. The page turns are quick, and it has crisp, readable type as well as a built-in light.

For much less, consider the $70 Kindle with Special Offers from Amazon. It also rated excellent for readability. However, the page turns aren't quite as fast.

Consumer Reports says there's something else to factor in when deciding which e-book reader to buy. If someone in your family already has a Kindle or a Nook, it can make sense to get the same kind. That way you can share their library and avoid paying for the same book twice.

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