They’re amazing right? I mean you no longer need an old lady shopping trolley to carry your latest essential reads about. You can read them in sunlight, read them in the dark, Hell you can read them in the bath so long as you have a firm grip and a dry hand.
Death to the paperback and long live the Paperwhite!
In the first flush of love of the Paperwhite I donated, lent and sold all my books (I say all, I kept the vital 50 or so), I no longer needed them. Think of all the space I could save! Think of all the dusting I didn’t have to do!
But I miss pages. I miss the beautiful covers and the thrill of holding a new book. I miss the yellowed edges of a second-hand, well loved paperback. I noticed that I wasn’t re-reading books on the Kindle, I’d forget them, scroll past the title and not think of the story. I was no longer connected to books.
So I am making a stand. Power to the paperback. I am no longer using ebooks, I’m all about the physical and it really is making a difference. here’s why:
Books look Good
Not only is it homely to see a bookshelf crammed with novels of different sizes and colours but Instagram has taken books to an art form and I can’t get enough of some of the creative ways people are styling their bookshelves.
Bookstagram is a big community and it’s a really friendly one too, not surprising really when you think about it. I mean with parenting there’s always someone that can do it better, more organically. But who can read a book better? It’s not like you can get competitive about identifying with the characters more or reading it quicker or staying up to finish it later. If you find someone that loves a book as much as you do then it’s a great moment, no competition needed.
Books look Good
What, I just said that? Well I mean it. It’s important that children see people reading, books look good. If I’m reading on my Kindle app, the children see that I’m on my phone, they don’t know what I’m doing and if they don’t see it, it never happened. Children can spot a weakness in an arguement with their eyes closed and looking to all intents and purposes that they haven’t even noticed you in the room. So you really have to practice what you preach when it comes to this.
I love that No.4 will sit on my lap and ask me to read to him, to read what I’m reading. I mean it bores him quickly, there’s no pictures and I’m not putting on a funny voice (although maybe I should, I wonder what I’d make Moriarty sound like?) but he wants to share what I’m doing.
Raising readers rarely happens by accident.
They are More Expensive
Again, What? They are more expensive. You can’t wander into a bookshop and pick from 3000 books at 99p or even free and this is a very good thing. Books that have made it through the physical publishing process have been chosen. Publishers have assessed the work as being worthy of the costs of a print run. They have not only curated content, but edited it and checked it for spelling and grammar too.
If I look for a Kindle book I can spend hours wading through self-published stories that quite frankly I could have done a better job with and that is saying something. My school girl attempts favoured the words “and then” which was often coupled with the amazing plot twist, “and then I
got bored of writing this woke up”.
They Have a History
I have a book that I love, it’s not a worthy story but it’s my comfort read and I’ve read it many times. The spine is cracked from when I slipped it into my bag, open, when I was riding on the bus. It’s pages are rippled from where I left it next to the bath in a puddle of condensation. When I pick the book up I remember not only the story in the pages but the story of the pages too. I have no particular recollections of my Kindle and any I do, I can’t remember the story I was reading at the time.
I Can Pass Them On.
There are books in my family that have changed hands 4 or 5 times between us, I gave my first midwife a novel she’d been interested in. I’d never give someone hand lotion I’d used but giving someone a used book is a recommendation, a promise of enjoyment.
I’m not saying never again but I am going to re-embrace the paper and enjoy a book the way it was always supposed to be read. I just need to invest in one of those little head-torches for nighttime reading!