My Kindle Keyboard 3G died on the flight back from Zurich to San Francisco, and Amazon offered me a replacement refurbished Basic Kindle for $50. The alternatives were the Kindle Touch and the Touch 3G, but the discount on those were not as good, and I felt that I might as well buy a Paperwhite rather than take those deals.
What impressed me upon unboxing the Basic Kindle is how light it is. I measured it at 190g even though Amazon claims 170g. Regardless, it's light, and small enough to almost fit in a pocket. It truly is a carry everywhere device. I expected to miss the keyboard but the reality is that I haven't really. The hardware buttons for turning the page work, and the nice thing about not having a touch screen is that your screen never gets smudged with fingerprints, etc. I tested it side by side against a Kindle Keyboard and the page turns are definitely faster on the Basic Kindle than the Kindle Keyboard 3G (3rd generation).
The price of the lighted cover accessory is ridiculous: new, it is almost the same price as the Basic Kindle as well. Fortunately, Amazon's warehouse occasionally sell refurbished covers for $13.50, which is a good price. The cover + Kindle weighs 310g, which is very good. The Kindle Keyboard with an SFBags Slipcase, for instance, weighs 340g, and that doesn't come with a light!
All in all, I've enjoyed reading on the Kindle Basic and can recommend it. As previously mentioned, I might not bring it on the next bike tour as the Nexus 7 is too useful for photo processing and can also be used as a reader, but for home use this is just as perfect as they come. Recommended.