Confessions of Two Bibliophiles #2

Published August 25, 2013 by bibliobeth

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CHAPTER TWO: THE E-READER vs THE ORIGINAL BOOK

 

Chrissi,
 
There’s been a lot of talk about which is better, the e-reader or the original “tree” book, and I know we have a lot to say about this! First of all I must hang my head in shame, as pre-Kindle, I was so vehemently opposed to e-readers, I swore I would never have one and would (puts hand on heart) stay loyal to the paper book. Well, that didn’t last very long! Now I have my Kindle, I love it to bits, and can’t remember how I coped without it. Its easy to read on and so convenient – I have quite a long commute to work and it’s been my life saver on the tube as I squeeze myself into precarious positions amongst the other Londoners, which I have to say, is much easier with a Kindle than a bulky hard/paperback book. Also, going on holiday! I devour books at quite a pace, and the memory of over-loading my suitcase with books (probably books rather than clothes…) is a thing of the past! Hundreds of books come right with me, no questions asked.
 
This isn’t to say I don’t love real books. Of course I do! And my bulging bookshelves at home agree with me. I will never stop buying them as I love the smell and touch and they look so beautiful in their righteous hard copy self. I will usually always buy an especially brilliant real book even if I have it already on Kindle, just for the joy of having it in its real form.
 
What do you think?
 
Beth

Beth,

Ah, this topic. There are so many pros and cons to both! I think you’re more of a fan of the Kindle than me, even though I am slowly coming around to the idea.

The kindle definitely makes my life as a book blogger easier, and I have to admit, it’s much easier to take out with me rather than lug around books. It’s easy for commuting and I can read a Kindle on a coach, but I can’t read a real book in a coach. What’s that about? I also use my kindle for ARCs from NetGalley, so that’s a bonus.

However, the Kindle just isn’t a book. It may be cheaper than physical books, but you can’t beat going into a bookshop and buying a beautiful smelling, perfect condition book. I’m obsessed with smelling a physical book. They just smell SO good. I want to bottle that smell. Oh I do. (Now I sound weird, but I’m sure fellow bibliophiles know exactly what I mean!) I also love browsing in bookshops and it’s just not the same with Kindle shopping.

It’s the same for me with buying books on Amazon. I love their Kindle sales, but nothing beats getting an Amazon package, opening it and just admiring all of your pretties.

Do you think the e-book will eventually take over the physical book? That thought terrifies me.

Chrissi

Chrissi,

Yes, I think I am a bit more of a Kindle fan than you! Although since you’ve discovered the joy of Net Galley, I think you are appreciating the little beast a bit more? I’m not sure why you can read a Kindle on a coach but not a book, I haven’t tried myself, I’m too scared I’ll get travel sick, but maybe it’s to do with not having to manually turn pages and your eye movements? Who knows!
But yes, I do agree with you that the Kindle can’t ever beat a real book – maybe this is why I think (in answer to your last question) that the e-book will never replace the real book. You can’t beat a bookstore, even if you don’t have the money to buy anything, just browsing is enough to get me excited! Plus, they just look so gooooooood. At the moment, we just buy an e-book by clicking a button, which doesn’t give me nearly the same feeling as walking out of a shop with a bag full of books and a smug grin on my face. Although, I am slightly worried I’ve developed Kindle 1-click itis…. it’s just to easy to keep hitting that button don’t you think?
 
Beth
Beth,
Yes it’s far too easy to click that Kindle 1-click button. Sometimes the Kindle books are just SO much cheaper as well. Perhaps real books need to become a bit cheaper? But then I guess someone is losing out in some way. Hmm.

Something I always do is buy a ‘real’ copy of my favourite authors books. You can’t beat having them all lined up on your shelf. They just look SO good.

It’s certainly a tough one but I for one know that the e-book will never, ever, ever replace my real book.  I can’t wait until we go to Foyles on Charing Cross Road and I can see you revel in the book glory. There’s NOTHING like a good bookstore as you say. I just wonder how many books we’ll pick up and add to our already bulging TBR piles both with real books and kindle books…

Chrissi

So what does everyone else think? Please feel free to join in our conversation, we’d love to hear your opinions!
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3 comments on “Confessions of Two Bibliophiles #2

  • I love my kindle but at the same time I have a sense of guilt that I am probably contributing to the closures of bookshops; it will be a sad day if there is nowhere left to see the real books. Also my bookshelves aren’t as updated as often they used to be so don’t reflect my current taste in books as much. The biggest loss is being able to hand friends copies of books I have enjoyed as there is no longer a physical item.

    As with everything there are pros and cons, the ease of the kindle is hard to loose but I still have some regrets

    • I feel the same way too, but am trying to not buy any more physical books for another reason – my bookshelves are bulging! I definitely agree with you about lending friends copies, that is a bit annoying, and would be lovely if it was possible. Thanks so much for your comment 🙂

    • I completely agree with you Cleopatra, I do think because we’re buying so many e-books that soon enough our gorgeous bookshops will be gone. That thought terrifies me. I love getting books on Amazon, but I also love the bookshops. You can’t beat it! 🙂

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