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This story is a part of Holiday Gift Guide 2021, our listing of concepts, by subject, by recipient and by value, that can assist you uncover the right present.

There’s one thing about studying an precise e-book that is a refreshing distinction to video-streaming choices, limitless video video games and a office tradition constructed round Zoom conferences. Books at all times make nice presents, however right here we’re specializing in the newest gadgets on which you’ll learn ebooks. The most well-known digital e-book reader is Amazon’s Kindle line, which makes use of E Ink shows. Current fashions supply self-illuminated screens, eliminating the necessity for an exterior e-book gentle. But past Kindle’s {hardware}, the Kindle app — together with different ebook-reading apps — works on smartphones, iPads and different gadgets.

Plenty of alternate options exist for those who do not wish to purchase by means of Amazon. For occasion, Rakuten’s Kobo book readers work with most third-party distributors utilizing the ePub e-book customary. And each Kobo and Kindle allow you to freely learn loaner books out of your native library.

One vital notice: You ought to by no means pay full value for a Kindle machine or Fire pill, as they get frequent deep reductions all year long. We count on the Black Friday season to supply one of the best costs of the yr for many of those.

Dan Ackerman/CNET

Yes, Amazon’s top-end Kindle is simply too costly for what it’s, however once I upgraded from a Kindle Paperwhite to the Oasis, I used to be knocked out by how a lot better the Oasis is when it comes to e-book readability and responsiveness. Plus, the bodily page-turn buttons are so a lot better than swiping. The newest model can alter the colour temperature of the (monochromatic) display screen, for higher nighttime studying.

Amazon runs numerous offers on this, and in addition be careful for trade-in bonuses on older Kindles to get it for an inexpensive value.

Read our Amazon Kindle Oasis (2019) evaluation.

David Carnoy/CNET

The Paperwhite is Amazon’s middle-of-the-road Kindle, between the bottom mannequin and the Oasis. It simply obtained an enormous improve within the type of a bigger 6.8-inch display screen and higher battery life. It’s additionally waterproof and might alter its show shade temperature, however it lacks the Oasis’ bodily page-turn buttons. There’s even an upgraded mannequin, the Signature Edition ($190), with 32GB of storage (versus 8GB) and an auto-adjusting entrance gentle. That one additionally works with the identical wi-fi charging pads as your iPhone. Hopefully, we’ll see this new Kindle drop under $100 this vacation season. Read our Kindle Paperwhite (2021) evaluation.

Sarah Tew/CNET

I’m not going to sugarcoat it. This fundamental Kindle is nowhere nearly as good because the Paperwhite or Oasis. But it is also an excellent impulse buy present for an informal reader or e-book lover entering into ebooks. The newest model provides a built-in gentle, which makes it way more usable, however I’d solely purchase if it was decently discounted. The value to hunt is $60 or much less.

Read our Amazon Kindle (2019) evaluation.

Scott Stein/CNET

The iPad Mini obtained what is perhaps one of the best tech product makeover of the yr, with an even bigger, higher display screen (now 8.3 inches), new processor, elective 5G and a thinner, lighter design. It’s the right measurement for ebooks, and the colour display screen makes it an excellent alternative for studying digital comics (ahem, graphic novels). At $500, it is costlier than the fanciest Kindle reader, however you get a full-fledged iPadOS machine that may function a streaming video participant or sport machine as effectively.

Read our Apple iPad Mini (2021) evaluation.

Dan Ackerman/CNET

Kindles are nice, however the screens are paperback-sized at greatest. This is one among a handful of bigger E Ink gadgets, and one of many few that may run Amazon’s Kindle software program. That’s as a result of the Note Air runs the Android cell OS and might obtain apps from the Google Play Store. Just beware, the machine feels sluggish when not in book-reading mode, and organising Google Play entry is difficult (see particulars in my Boox Note Air hands-on right here). I do not care, I nonetheless suppose big E Ink gadgets are very cool.

David Carnoy/CNET

Kobo readers are principally the anti-Kindles. Kobo has its personal book retailer, and it permits you to try ebooks out of your native library proper on the machine (Kindles require you to make use of the Libby app). Kobo’s high-end readers can go for as a lot as $400, however the Clara HD is the Goldilocks within the firm’s line, with an built-in ComfortLight Pro illumination, a 300ppi (1,072×1,448 decision) “HD” show, 8GB of storage and a 1GHz processor.

And after getting an book reader, why not fill it up with some books written by CNET authors? Here’s a couple of to get began:


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