Books and reading have always been a very tangible experience for me. The smell of a new book or an old and much loved copy, the noise and sensation of turning a page, even turning down a corner of the page you are on (a crime to some I know!) if you need to put it down before the end. I even prefer buying books in a store even though online shopping is so much easier. I go into the shop with a sense of excitement about getting a new book, hoping they have one you want in stock or just choosing something new to read. Mind you, I can rarely buy just one book and holding a few as you browse is part of the experience. Then buying them and leaving the shop with a bag of books and a lot of anticipation. Online you can usually get what you want but the wait for the delivery and then arriving in a box doesn’t bring about quite that same sense of excitement.
With the advent of E-readers, I’m a bit lost what to think. I’ve never used one and only looked at ones for sale in Waterstones and online, so not had the experience for myself. I can see the advantages – being able to carry a multitude of books on one device that is the size of one, but is that the only thing that would attract me?
Have I become so ingrained with my love of physical books since I was a young child that I wouldn’t be able to make the switch? And would I want to? The other aspect that comes to mind as well is I use the computer for so many things already, my eyes like the break of reading text on paper. Would I just feel as if I were still reading a computer screen? The sun on a book page doesn’t really make much difference other than squinting slightly. The sun on a screen is a totally different matter and makes it unreadable.
I’d be interested to know how people feel, who feel the same as I do about physical books but do use an E-reader anyway. Or as I suspect I might be, are you too in love with paper books to want to do it a different way?