I’ve always been one of those traditionalists who preferred the feel of a good book in my hands to the plastic feel of an e-reader.
I love looking at my book case and feeling that silly sense of achievement, taking in just how many adventures I’d read from cover to cover. I guess you could say that it was pre-destined for me to be a bit of book worm, born into a house where almost every inch of spare wall space was covered in book shelves and I was even named after my Dad’s favourite fictional character from The Chronicles of Narnia.
Books are such a personal and unique thing. I still have battered and grubby copies of my favourite books from when I was child that I know I could never part with. Each mark or little tear takes me back to a time long ago and I often wonder if my children will be able to have this same experience when they grow up. A Kindle can never give you that wonderful musty ‘book’ smell that transports me back to days gone by. The thought that I could just delete a book that I had enjoyed from my digital library makes me feel strangely sad.
Understandably, taking the plunge into the world of the e-reader was a big step for this die-hard book lover, but even I have to admit that it can be a bit tricky trying to read a huge paperback on the busy commute. It does also help with the constant battle I have with myself trying to decide what books to squeeze into my suitcase before a holiday – having everything saved in one place does have its advantages.
Looking back at my university days I would have much preferred storing everything on a Kindle instead of lugging a heavy backpack full of text books around the place. But in everyday life I am a person who reads for pleasure, from start to finish. I love getting lost in quirky book shops and could spend hours rummaging through the second hand book stall on South Bank. Logging into a virtual book store using an electronic device just doesn’t have that same appeal. No matter how convenient it might be.
For me, an e-reader is a thing of convenience. And, as much as it does feel weird to admit this, they do have their uses. If using my Kindle means that I can take all six books that I can’t choose between on holiday and still have room in my suitcase for more dresses then it can’t be all that bad really can it? Eight million people in the UK are said to now own a Kindle or e-reader in one form or another so I guess they must be doing something right. That being said, I’m still not so sure. As convenient as my Kindle is and as revolutionary I think it is in terms of technology, in my mind you will never be able to beat that feeling of turning the page between your fingers.