I've tried reading a book on the iPad, but I didn't really enjoy the experience: the device is too heavy for one-handed holding in bed, and the screen is too bright -- it almost lights up the room. In addition, it is difficult (if not impossible) to read on an iPad without using a second hand for turning (i.e. swiping) pages. (What I do with the free hand is none of your business, but seriously, I read paperbacks mostly, so I'm accustomed to using one hand only.)
In addition to the six-pack of beer I got a real Kindle a month ago. After removing the Kindle from it's box I thought I would be disappointed, but far from it -- I've been using it daily since then, and it is a great pleasure to hold. The device is very light (lighter than a pocket book), and after a month of use with WiFi enabled, I'm still on the first battery charge.
The device's electronic paper is quite amazing (I dislike the word "awesome", so I won't use it, but I came close doing so), and it looks and almost feels like "real" paper. I can lie in bed holding the Kindle in one hand (like a paperback), and thanks to the large page-forward buttons on both sides of the Kindle, the device can be held in either hand.
Purchasing content on the Amazon Kindle store (most of which has DRM on it which, of course, is bad for the customer) is easy from the device itself, or from the comfort of a large Web browser, and books are silently and delivered wirelessly to the device the next time it is switched on.
I note that most of the novels I've read on the device so far have a quite a number of spelling mistakes or typos, such as this beauty I detected last night. ;-)
All in all, the Kindle is a device I'll be using permanently, and it is an excellent alternative to paper, particularly when travelling: it saves on schlepping an extra book bag along.