Should you check out one of these best eReaders (do you spell it eReaders? e reader? e-reader? I honestly don’t know at this point.)? Lemme tell you about my situation.
I just love reading. After all, I am Samantha Howard–The Nerdy Book Girl.
But here’s the thing. As much as I wish, I just can’t carry around my full library of print books with me. It’s a cryin’ shame, but this girl ain’t no octopus. I’ve only got two hands. However, that’s more than enough to have an entire cornucopia of literature at my fingertips.
E-readers can make a book-o-phile’s life that much more enjoyable! With a great eReader, I can always stay in touch with my favorite characters and stories whether it’s riding the bus or climbing a mountain. Yet, there lies a problem. With the popularity of eReading and digital books come a whole bunch of sub-par reading devices. Pretenders to the throne, if you will.
No worries though because ole Sam here is gonna clue you into the absolute best eReaders available on the market today!
Just a disclaimer… I will be using Amazon Affiliate links here. This, however, does not change my opinion at all and they don’t cost you anything to use. All they do is help me keep my teapots full and my cat fed.
What are the best eReaders? Here’s my top 8 list:
I thought about trying to get more top eReaders on this list, but I honestly decided to cap it at five. In my experience, I wouldn’t be that great of a reviewer if I tried to identify the best ebook reader and then somehow came up with 10 of them. We’re looking for the best eReaders, not a huge list.
So with that in mind, here are my choices:
- Kindle Oasis
- Kindle Paperwhite
- KOBO Clara HD
- KOBO Aura H2O
- Onyx BOOX Note2
- Kobo Elipsa Pack
- Fire HD 8 tablet
- Standard Kindle
Electronic book readers comparison chart (top 8 highest rated)
You’re probably not shocked to find a Kindle device at the top of this list. After all, they’re the ones that kinda revolutionized the whole eReading thing. And if you’re looking for the best the Kindle ereaders line has to offer, your search ends here with the Oasis.
- Our best 7", 300 ppi flush-front Paperwhite display.
- Adjustable warm light to shift screen shade from white to amber.
- Waterproof (IPX8) so you can read in the bath or by the pool. Your Kindle has been tested...
- Thin and light ergonomic design with page turn buttons.
- Reads like real paper with the latest e-ink technology for fast page turns.
This baby has got it all. It’s got a sleek, yet grippable and ergonomically designed body that keeps it lightweight and in your hands–to prevent dropping it on your face at night in bed. (We’ve all done it before. No shame.) One of the things that makes it so is the page turning buttons on the unit. No more need to swipe and turn–which quite frankly is AMAZEBALLS! However, the page turners are only on the right side of the book…So sorry lefties, right?
Wrong. No need to worry because the Oasis is the only Kindle with screen rotating tech. That means all you need to do is rotate the screen and VOILA! Your buttons are on the other side.
But that’s not it. The Kindle Oasis is by far the most light balanced eReader available. It comes with 10 LEDs to help illuminate the screen evenly so you can forget about that stubborn light chasing. Now, there’s no photo sensor so you’ll have to manually adjust the brightness as you need. But that easily and simply done.
However, everything I just mentioned pales in comparison to what’s next. It’s unique leather cover. What makes the Oasis’s cover so unique is not that it’s leather, but that it’s also a charger for your eReader. That’s right. Your cover actually keeps your Oasis charged. And that charge lasts damn near forever. Seriously. The Oasis with the cover can last up to 10 MONTHS on a single charge. That’s insane.
The only gripes I really have about this unit is that is it’s not as much of a waterproof ereader as I’d like. And the price. It’s one of the more expensive eReaders available, but when you’re looking for Cadillac… Don’t expect to pay for a beater.
- Awesome premium design
- For right and left hands
- Good illumination
- Great battery life
- Waterproofing could be better
- High price tag
Second on our list of best eReaders comes another Kindle option. And that’s the Kindle Paperwhite.
- Kindle Paperwhite – Now with a 6.8” display and thinner borders, adjustable warm...
- Purpose-built for reading – With a flush-front design and 300 ppi glare-free display...
- More books in more places – Store thousands of titles, then take them all with you. A...
- Easy on the eyes – Now with adjustable warm light to shift screen shade from white to...
- Waterproof reading – Built to withstand accidental immersion in water, so you’re good...
While it doesn’t come with as many bells and whistles as the Oasis, the Paperwhite can definitely give you a wonderful reading experience. As a matter of fact, you’ll find many others claim this to be their top choice when it comes to eReader devices. (And I thought about it…But I’m in absolute love with my Oasis. No offense Paperwhite.)
The Paperwhite is like the upgrade to your standard Kindle ereader. It boasts a better resolution, better backlit screen, and increased battery performance. Along with standard WIFI, the Paperwhite comes with 4G LTE capabilities. That way you can always get your fix as long as you have a signal.
Oh! And it’s way cheaper than the Oasis.
- Very affordable
- Has everything you need
- Not as advanced as the Kindle Oasis
Now, let’s get real for a sec… There may be some of you out there not yet ready to embrace the loving grasp of Amazon. (You can probably tell…I’m not one of those.) But if you are, there’s still some of the best eReaders available to you. Like the KOBO Clara HD, which is the best eReader for library books, in my opinion.
- 𝗔𝗗𝗝𝗨𝗦𝗧𝗔𝗕𝗟𝗘 𝗕𝗥𝗜𝗚𝗛𝗧𝗡𝗘𝗦𝗦 &...
- 𝗚𝗟𝗔𝗥𝗘-𝗙𝗥𝗘𝗘 𝗧𝗢𝗨𝗖𝗛𝗦𝗖𝗥𝗘𝗘𝗡 – It...
- 𝗖𝗔𝗥𝗥𝗬 𝗨𝗣 𝗧𝗢 𝟲𝟬𝟬𝟬 𝗕𝗢𝗢𝗞𝗦 – With 8GB...
- 𝗔 𝗖𝗨𝗦𝗧𝗢𝗠𝗜𝗭𝗘𝗗 𝗥𝗘𝗔𝗗𝗜𝗡𝗚...
- 𝗟𝗢𝗡𝗚 𝗟𝗔𝗦𝗧𝗜𝗡𝗚 𝗕𝗔𝗧𝗧𝗘𝗥𝗬...
The KOBO Clara HD is a neat, simplistic option designed to be lightweight, portable, and easy-to-operate. But it does have some features even unavailable to the Kindle Oasis–namely being the light detection sensor. Yup, the Clara will automatically detect your ambient light and adjust to optimum reading levels. Not too shabby.
And if you’re a frequent library goer, you’re in luck. The KOBO Clara is super friendly with library checkout systems. So no need for a big hassle when checking out or returning books.
- Light detection sensor
- Great for library checkout systems
- Not integrated with Amazon
I don’t know about you…But I love reading my best choose your own adventure books in the bath. And what’s even better is when coupled with a book holder stand, I can have a glass of wine along with it. However, it really sucks when I drop my book in the tub. I gotta do that frantic dance of fishing out my read, cursing (normally quite audibly), and praying to the book gods that my print partner isn’t gone for good.
- 𝗚𝗟𝗔𝗥𝗘 𝗙𝗥𝗘𝗘 & 𝗜𝗠𝗣𝗥𝗢𝗩𝗘𝗗...
- 𝗔𝗦 𝗔𝗗𝗔𝗣𝗧𝗔𝗕𝗟𝗘 𝗔𝗦 𝗬𝗢𝗨 𝗔𝗥𝗘 - Kobo...
- 𝗟𝗜𝗦𝗧𝗘𝗡 𝗔𝗧 𝗬𝗢𝗨𝗥 𝗟𝗘𝗜𝗦𝗨𝗥𝗘 - Kobo...
- 𝗙𝗨𝗟𝗟𝗬 𝗪𝗔𝗧𝗘𝗥𝗣𝗥𝗢𝗢𝗙* - You can take your story...
- 𝗙𝗨𝗟𝗟 𝗢𝗙 𝗣𝗢𝗦𝗦𝗜𝗕𝗜𝗟𝗜𝗧𝗜𝗘𝗦 -...
And it’s not like I’m gonna take my Kindle Oasis in the bath. I mean we’ve all seen Fear and Loathing right? But…there’s a solution. Get a waterproof eReader! And this is definitely the best Kobo eReader on this list: the Kobo Libra 2.
While it’s pretty ordinary as far as eReaders go, it has one thing that truly sets it apart. Its absolute ability to be waterproof. The Libra 2 can last submerged in up to 2 meters of water for an entire hour. That’s nuts. Seriously, if you wanted to read a story completely underwater you could. Maybe just not War and Peace.
And if you’ve got little munchkins who love to read as well, no need to worry bout them grubby little fingers spilling who-knows-what on your Libra 2.
- Awesome waterproofing
- Has all the other features you’d need
- Not integrated with Amazon
I love my eReaders. I really do. But they all have their limitations. One in particular that they share in common is the fact that schematics, maps, and coding diagrams are such a pain in the bohonkus to read!
You know that maneuver…The one where you zoom in, zoom out, swipe over, just to rinse and repeat? Yea, well that process definitely gets minimized with the BOOX Note Air 2. And yes… I know there are going to be some of you out there who think I’m nuts for putting this on my list. After all, it’s not just an eReader.
And you got me there. But despite its massive 10.3″ screen, it’s not a full-blown tablet. You can, however, read, jot notes, and listen to audio books…so, eReader. (Come at me, bro. J/K)
Either way, it’s a bit expensive. But if you’re reading a bunch of technical mumbo jumbo, you might want to make the investment.
- Can read advanced documents like schematics and maps
- Can run Android
- Huge screen
- Very expensive
- Immerse yourself in the must-have writing and reading package: the complete Kobo Elipsa...
- Capture endless ideas on our biggest 10.3" screen featuring ComfortLight
- Create your own notebooks, and mark up your eBooks and documents
- Transform your notebook handwriting into typed text and export to any device
- Carry all your notes, PDFs, and books with 32GB of storage
E-ink eReaders are getting more and more sophisticated these days, and the Kobo Elipsa is proof of that! Have you ever wanted to take notes with a stylus or a pen, like actual hand-written notes on a tablet?
Well, now you can!
The Kobo Elipsa back comes with the actual eReader tablet, a Stylus and a SleepCover. The stylus allows you to write on the tablet just like a pen and paper. You can make notes in the margins of the books you’re reading, or you can take completely separate notes.
Plus this particular model has 32 GB of storage, which is more than enough for books. And you and import and export using Dropbox, so it’s easy to get files on and off.
- You can mark up your books with a stylus, just like notetaking in a physical book
- Glare free & adjustable
- Plenty of storage
- A little on the pricey side
- Harder to integrate with Kindle books
- 8" HD display, 2X the storage (32 or 64 GB of internal storage and up to 1 TB with microSD...
- All-day battery life - Up to 12 hours of reading, browsing the web, watching videos, and...
- Now with USB-C for easier charging. Fully charges in under 5 hours (with included cable +...
- 30% faster thanks to the new 2.0 GHz quad-core processor.
- Enjoy your favorite apps like Netflix, Facebook, Hulu, Instagram, TikTok, and more through...
Most of the options on this list are, understandably, eReaders powered by E-ink, meaning that they don’t have a lot of glare or require a backlight. This is great because it allows you to avoid a lot of the negative effects of our devices, such as exposure to blue light.
But the downside to E-ink devices is that they’re not in color. So what to do when you need a good color experience for your device? Well, I would look to Amazon’s Kindle Fire line for more on that.
The Fire HD 8 tablet is one of the most affordable tablets of its calibre on the market. And the best part is, it integrates seemlessly with the Kindle store, making it a viable option for reading books.
There is the downside, of course, that you get all that blue light exposure, but the upside is that you can read things like comics without much of an issue.
- Can read in color
- Can perform other tasks that a tablet is built for
- Has other apps
- Doesn’t use E-ink technology
- Purpose-built for reading with a 167 ppi glare-free display that reads like real paper,...
- Adjustable brightness lets you read comfortably—indoors and outdoors, day and night.
- A single battery charge lasts weeks, not hours.
- 8 GB of storage means thousands of titles on hand all in a compact size.
- Read distraction-free. Highlight passages, look up definitions, translate words, and...
I’ve listed pretty much every model of the Kindle on this list, and for good reason. They’re definitely the big elephant in the room when it comes to eReaders, and while other companies are taking good strides to catch up, they still have a long way to go.
While the Kindle Oasis is the cream of the crop, and the paperwhite is a premium option as well, it’s the standard Kindle that gets Best Budget option.
Because honestly, if all you need is a cheap eReader to read your digital purchases with, one without super high contrast or amazing resolution (which you don’t really need to comprehend what you’re reading just fine), then the standard Kindle may be all you need.
For the longest time, this was what I had, and I had no problem with it. It was only after getting a few Amazon gift cards that I decided to spurge on the Oasis, and while I don’t regret that, I certainly might have if I had shelled out all that money myself. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with the standard Kindle.
- Does everything you need
- Connects with the Kindle store
- Newer models have backlights now
- Very cheap
- Less resolution
- Less light/dark contrast
What Are eReaders Good For?
An eReader is my favorite way to read! It allows me to have hundreds of books in my pocket.
The best thing about most eReaders is that avoid one of the dangers of all our devices: blue light.
With a good eReader, the technology uses e-ink (which is basically an advanced etch-a-sketch) to display the words on the page. Not only does this help you avoid the shiny-glowy screens that cause us so many problems these days, but it also saves on a TON of battery drainage.
The only thing they don’t provide is that nice used book smell. But honestly, I can live with that. The benefits are too good to ignore.
Why Choose One of Our Best eReaders?
Bottom line: Because choosing a crappy eReader isn’t going to be very fun. You should invest in something really worth your while.
That’s not to say that there aren’t other great eReaders out there. These are just my personal favorites–particularly the two Kindles. (For more detailed info, check out my Oasis vs Paperwhite article)
But you need to be willing to do some research in order to get the right option for you. Or just check out these…no pressure. E-reading isn’t going away anytime soon. As a matter of fact, the number of self-published eBooks grows higher and higher every day. If you love books, don’t get left behind. I love my paperbacks and hard copies, but I’d definitely be lost without my Kindle.
Are ereaders still popular?
Yes, eReaders are still very popular, and they are continuing to grow. In fact, I find them to be one of the most useful of my devices.
Is there something better than Kindle?
This depends on what you mean by “better”. Technologically, Kindle is one of the best, and it has the mega-tech-giant Amazon backing it up, which is nothing to sneer at. But if you’re looking for more integration with other retailers or libraries, you might want to look elsewhere.
What ereaders are compatible with Libby?
The Kobo eReaders are compatible with Libby. In general, the Kobo eReaders are better at integrating with libraries and other ebook formats as well. On the flip side, the Kindle readers really only work well with Amazon. There are ways to side-load other ePubs, but it can be a hassel.
Is it worth buying a Kindle if I have an iPad?
Yes! While you can absolutely read on an iPad, you’re still getting all that extra blue light messing up your vision. An eReader avoids this and gets a huge battery life as a result. Plus they are not nearly as expensive as an iPad is.
What is better an ereader or a tablet?
For reading, definitely the eReader is better. They help you avoid blue light and last forever on a single charge. However, tablets can perform many other functions that an eReader can’t (yet), such as connecting to app stores, a thorough internet browsing experience, and being able to play video and games.
Which ereader is easiest on the eyes?
I’d say they’re all pretty easy on the eyes, but if I had to pick one, it would be the Kindle Oasis. The Oasis has very clear contrast between the light and dark, and the resolution is top-notch. If it is too expensive for you, the Kindle Paperwhite would be my next choice.