Wired's in-depth review of the Kindle Fire probably nails it: good for a few things, so-so for a lot, and crappy for a few; that's a sentiment that at least one other reviewer agrees with. About 2.5 stars out of 5, it seems; the second review, interestingly, notes it's kind of heavy and hard to hold with one hand, which undercuts the smaller size making it cheaper.
Now, none of these reviews include the "chain you to our information" angle that Amazon has behind the Fire, which is of course Jeff Bezos' ramped-up salvo in the "infowars" of today's online world. Of course, Wired has an in-depth interview with him, focused on that salvo.
Meanwhile, the Fire is "only" a $3 loss leader, says one analyst, although another claims, in this in-depth story, that the Fire is a definite profit-margin winner. Interesting. That probably says
both that it's not that great, as reviews are saying, and that Bezos, aka Steve Jobs Jr., knows exactly what he's doing:
That said, if customer service on the Fire turns out to be as crappy as with this particular on-hiatus book reviewer, Amazon's in trouble, anyway. And, I hope it is.