I have seen dozens of articles and blog posts professing people’s love of print books. The smell of the binding, the feel of the pages, the general tangibility. But I haven’t really seen a whole lot of screaming from the mountaintops about e-readers, despite them being a growing phenomenon. Maybe it’s time I chime in.
- I read SO much more now that I have a Kindle. Before I received a Kindle Fire for Christmas two years ago, I read, but not really. I don’t have the space for print books. I don’t have the disposable income to buy them all, even if I did have the space. And the library? They don’t always have what I want to read. When they do acquire a hot bestseller, someone else has borrowed it and I have to conjure up every ounce of patience in my soul to wait for it to be my damn turn to read it. Meanwhile, the first year I had my Kindle I read 75 books. The next year I read 59. That just wouldn’t have been possible without my Kindle.
- If I finish a book while I’m out I can just start another one. One of my readers commented on my post listing the titles I’m most looking forward to this year. She stated that when she’d read Maze Runner she’d been on vacation and couldn’t get a hold of the next book in the series. I then shared with her the time I sat for jury duty, waiting for hours to see if I would be called. I finished the book I was reading and then promptly started a new one. Time flew by for me. For those who’d finished their newspapers, magazines, and print books? Not so much.
- I don’t have to travel with a crap-ton of heavy books. Have you read Under the Dome by Stephen King? That thing is well over a thousand pages. Imagine sacrificing space in your purse or suitcase for the print copy of that gigantic tome. Not fun. But when I read it on my Kindle, I could bring it everywhere, without messing up the alignment of my spine.
- I don’t have to go seek out the books I want. Before my Kindle, if there was something I really wanted to read, I had to go to the bookstore and look for it. If that bookstore didn’t have it, I had to have it ordered so I could pick it up later or go to another location entirely. I could order it myself online, but then I’d have to wait for it to be shipped. What a pain, no? Now, if I read an article about a new release or someone recommends a title to me, I simply pick up my Kindle and search for the damn thing. I can have the whole thing or just the sample in minutes.
- E-books are cheaper (for the most part). Paperback books are often $10 or so. Hardbacks are normally twice that. Like I said, I just don’t have that kind of money lying around to buy every book I’d want to read. Especially not when its first released. I mean, I just read Dan Brown’s DaVinci Code last year. Why? Because when it came out it was more expensive than I would have liked. Now, are some ebooks still $10 or more? Yes. Stupid traditional publishers still price them that high, despite the low-cost of production, because they have so much overhead to cover. However, since I can read so many other books for far less than $10, I feel fine splurging every now and then on a pricier book.
So, which camp are you in? Pro-print or All-hail-e-reader?
As usual I have to agree with you, I rather dislike this prevailing notion that if you’re not reading physical books that somehow the story is fundamentally altered. The words don’t change, nothing changes, it’s just a lot lighter and actually a bit more convenient. The only downside is that iBooks are often more expensive than Kindle, which frustrates me to no end, but that’s life… either way love to see someone actually defending ebooks for a change :).
Yay! Thank you!
I absolutely prefer my Kindle, for all the reasons you mentioned. I can also change the font size, which is nice because my eyes are getting old. And it is so much easier to walk with–I walk a lot (I don’t have a car) and carrying my Kindle is easier than carrying print books.
Good one! I forgot about the font size. And also the night-view black background. I read almost exclusively at night and not having to turn on a lamp, which would keep my hubby up, is huge!
I’m only just beginning to appreciate my Kindle but I’m still fond of my paper books. I’m at the stage where I haven’t decided which I prefer at the moment. If you had asked me before Christmas I would have said a paper book but now I’m not sure.
Haha. I predict you’ll be converted during this year. Or the next time you go on vacation. Lol.
Vacation? I’ve not had one of those for years! Lol but I think you’re right. It is so much easier then lugging books around.
Really? No vacation? Even though you guys can literally be in another country within an hour?
Yeah I’ve had a few weekends away but not more then a couple of days. My sister in law and her partner have a pub in North Wales so that’s write a nice little get away.
Knowing my dependence upon books, Spousal Unit bought a second-gen Kindle for me years ago, back when they were still $300+. Best investment ever. I wore it out, poor thing. lol
I do buy more and read more on my Kindle and Kindle apps, and I love the opportunities to try out freebies, too, which really rarely happens with print books.
As an author, I find I sell more eBooks than print, which tells me that though many of my readers do prefer the print copies, the majority go electronic.
All that being said, I love my paperback library. Because if there ever is one of those dreaded EMP weapon strikes? I will still have books. (Yeah…my head…just…weird.)
Yep, mine was the first Kindle Fire and it was about $300 when hubby got it for me. Probably one of my favorite presents from him ever, though the wine fridge is gaining. Lol.
I forgot to mention freebies!
I sell more ebooks online also, but I’ve sold an equal amount of paperbacks if I include hand selling.
Lol @ EMP! If we’re stricken by something like that, all I have is my research books (medical, forensics, law enforcement, etc) and my collector’s edition Sherlock Holmes set. Lol. At least I know how to knit, huh?
I LOVE my Kindle. I am on my second and can’t imagine my reading life without it. In 2010 I traveled a lot for work. Almost every week. It was wonderful to have several books with me without having to carry them individually. I find that I still prefer physical books for my research and reference materials so I can write in them but that’s the only reason. Great post. ~Gail
I still refer physical books for reference, also. I just bought some writing materials to accurately portray forensics, police procedure, and psychopathy. I don’t write in them, but I like to be able to flip through them.
I like my Kindle but I am still getting used to it. Still get frustrated when can’t flick back to check something – yes I know about bookmarking but for me it’s slower than flicking. Read slowly so end up charging before finished. Need to learn time saving features. But it saves space, even if it leaves the bookcase bare.
I used to get frustrated by that too. I find it easier to highlight something of interest because when you press the menu button, it shows you what you highlighted.
A lot of people have complained about the charge capacity, but I plug mine in while I do other things (like write) so it almost never dies on me. 🙂
My bookcase is full of writing research materials, so it’ll never be bare. Lol. I guess I had to get a Kindle…
Thanks Jordanna. Will try that highlighting next time I want to find something I need to remember. Non-fiction books are full of strips of paper… that fall out.
Ooh, for my research books I buy the little sticky flags! The top is colored and looks like a bookmark but the bottom has an adhesive that doesn’t ruin the pages. But they won’t fall out either! Good luck!
I agree. I’m sick of this book snobbery. And some of the reasons people give for their “love” of one version or the other, like smell, knowing how many pages to go, etc, are just lame. I think the biggest plus for ebooks and ereaders is that more people are reading a greater number of books in a year. I alluded to the reason for this this week, being that people reading ebooks are being less snobby about their reading, so they are reading stuff they enjoy, which is always easier to read.
Absolutely. People who want to read 50 Shades on the bus can do so, or if you’re an adult that enjoys a lot of YA. Right on.
Yep. With you all the way! Usually read my Kindle on teh train. It’s so much easier when standing and having to read one-handed while holding on with the other. Having said that, I just finished a hardback copy of Matthew Reilly’s The Tournament. On the train. Standing up. Brilliant book. Well worth it.
Haha. I hope it wasn’t a heavy book. However long it was, must have been cumbersome. But if it was worth it, I’ll look it up!
400 pages, largish font. Warning, has adult themes. Contains very explicit chess scenes. And other types of scenes worthy of warning, if you know what I mean. 😉 Some of which are not pleasant.
Oh my. Thanks for the head’s up.
Pingback: Jerks & Irks LIX: E-Book Extras? | journeyofjordannaeast