3 August 2014

Book Banter #1: Digital or Printed?

What's this? A new feature for you! I decided that every now and again I wanted a feature to discuss bookish things in more detail. They may be bookish habits, peeves, weird stuff or just a little bit of news I might be excited about.. maybe even a culmination of everything. I'm not sure yet, but I'm going to try!

First up, the big debate. Are ereaders or books better?

I love my Kindle. I really do. It's great to take on holiday because I can fit it into my hand luggage and it takes up hardly any space. As the kind of girl who would take it to work with me to read in my lunch-break, this is an immeasurable bonus. I tried taking a Game of Thrones book with me once, and I honestly could not make it fit into my bag. So it's eco-friendly with no paper-usage, which also makes it purse-friendly (although used paperbacks are waaayy cheaper on Amazon if they're old, literally going for pennies), oh, and the delivery is super-fast!

On the eReader (this, again is based on Kindle), you can change the font size, you can look up words in the dictionary, you put it against something and read with one hand, thus allowing you to eat and read at the same time. You never lose your place in a book and you can store so many books on it that there are no worries about trying to guess how many books you'll need for that flight. One more thing, you can read a dirty book, and unless some weirdo is reading it over your shoulder without consulting you, no-one need ever know you're doing it in public. Your secret erotica fandom is in safe hands.

However, books came first, and in my opinion they should never go away. Sometimes the simple smell of paper and the flicking through of pages is all I need to get myself into the reading-zone. Flicking backwards and forwards is effortless, and sometimes you just want to cheat that ending to know everyone turns out OK. It's bad, but we've all done it (and instantly regretted it).

In terms of books versus the ereader, your books don't need a device to be read on, you don't need to turn anything on, charge anything up or connect to the internet to receive and read your book. You can see exactly how far you've got to go in a book and you can see how far you've come. I don't know if it's just me or not, but I feel a real sense of achievement in finishing a large book, but never in finishing a large ebook.

The one biggest pull for me is book covers. There are some beautiful designs out there and it seems a waste to hide them all away into a singular page inside one book. I love to view all of my covers sticking out from my bookshelf, I love to show people some of the gorgeous artwork, the beautiful dresses, the fonts, the colours, everything that went into that cover. A great deal of time is spent on these and it feels like a shame not to display them.

Both are about equally as robust. Electronics break just as often as books fall apart at the seams, and essentially, they both do the same job. I can't pretend that I err on either side. I love the Kindle because I can get all my books on there so effortlessly, but I love my books for their sheer beauty and their tactile nature. I don't ever want to have to choose.

Do you like your ereader better or do you prefer your paperbacks? Do you have anything to add?