I find I have become accustomed to the buttons and can hold the thing without pushing them.
I find the weeniness of the keyboard letters annoying when I am checking the Kindle store from the Kindle.
The expense of the cases is ridiculously high, I agree.
I am trying to find something I already have to protect the Kindle when I am carrying it around, or leaving it somewhere, because it is quite fragile.
It does need some light to read by, but I find it fine with my low energy light bulbs.
Amazon sent me my new Kindle by priority mail when mine broke, did not charge for it, and refunded the cost of emailing the old one back to them.
They also set up the new Kindle with my whole library for me and handled the complexities that came with my having picked up the original one in the USA (who knew there would be a number of complexities?)