I’ve been eagerly awaiting the release of the new Barnes and Noble Nook eReader, and today it’s now available in stores.  Pre-orders are now backed up through January 2010.  With the release, a few reviews are now coming out.

Your First Look at Nook: The Technologizer Review
The Nook has the potential to decisively trump the Kindle, but I want to see if Barnes & Noble’s upcoming software update fixes the issues I encountered before I declare any winners.

Nook Chases Kindle at Snail’s Pace – BusinessWeek
Before Barnes & Noble spends much time on the Nook’s future, though, it needs to deal with the present. Early adopters can only hope it moves more quickly than the Nook currently does.

Barnes & Noble Nook Review: Pretty Damn Good – Gizmodo
For now, no one will laugh at you for owning either, though you will now surely be ridiculed for spending $400 on a Sony with glare issues, or—pardon me, iRex—anything that requires a stylus. And since many third-party readers are going with the Barnes & Noble store, you’d be dumb to buy any of them instead of the Nook. That may change in the future (can you believe I made it this far without mentioning Apple Tablet?) but for now, in the ebook department, there’s just these two big dogs surrounded by a bunch of poodles.

I’m going to continue monitoring the reviews and I hope to give one a hands-on try sometime this week (though I fear the crowds).