I opened the [Kindle app] on my next subway ride downtown. It began with approximately two paragraphs of the book, lit up on the screen of my phone. I tapped the side of the screen and it flew to the next three paragraphs, and so on. A few minutes passed and I observed that I was reading peacefully. It was both an entirely new reading experience, like I had a secret that fit inside the palm of my hand, but it was also familiar: In the fifth grade I was taught to speed-read on a machine that projected sentences onto a wall at high speeds, sentences in the white box of a screen, flashing in a dark room.
Get the Longreads Weekly Email
Success! You're on the list.
Whoops! There was an error and we couldn't process your subscription. Please reload the page and try again.