I have an Ellonex, which I would not recommend. a friend has the kindle which looked great ( hope you've bought your ereader already) :)
I must say I was a bit sceptical before switching to ebooks but it has been absolutely FANTASTIC to me. I also don't have the space I would need for all the books I read, and the library is unfortunately not an option.
I really do love my ereader ( even though the reader itself is not the best around)
Oh and as for Format issues. There's a program you can download called Calibre which you can use to convert from one format to another. So for instance if you have a kindle but end up buying a pdf for less, you can convert to correct format. I use it mostly to convert pdf's to epub and it's really easy to use.
A year ago my wife bought me a Barns & Noble nook - love it! She checked it out - I had to buy HER one if I was ever going to get mine back. Since, we've bought one for our son (35) and my mother. I have the B&W with WiFi and 3G - my wife has the new color nook.
There are LOTS of free books out there, especially older publications on history and philosophy. B&N offers a free book every Friday. You can read newspapers, magazines, whatever. And, unlike the Kindle, the nook is non-propriatary, so you can load books from your computer, or from the local library, whatever.
GoogleBooks has scanned several million old books, and most are available for free. The nook can store up to 1500 titles, which are yours (forever) including audio books, and has a built in dictionary.
I HIGHLY recommend the nook.
Oh yeah. I have found so many public domain books online that I would love to read but hate reading on computer screens. I've tried audio books but I hate hearing them read in someone else's voice. Well...unless it was someone with a distinctive voice reading from a genre fitting their voice. Like Vincent Price reading Poe.To me it's like seeing a beloved book made into a movie. It's rarely meets and, even rarer, exceeds the imagination.
Thank you for the recommendation. I'm thinking Nook is my best option. Most books that I have interest in have been out of print for over 100 years so I would have to pay a small fortune to buy a copy unless I luck out. There is always that odd occasion one stumbles on a great find though.