I still like turning pages
While never to be labeled a technology maven since I still struggle with the four remotes for our TV/tuner/Blue Ray player, etc. (think Billy Crystal in City Slickers), I have picked up tech tips and gizmo-envy via osmosis.
So while remotes baffle me, I do admit to having an attachment to other electronic gadgets. I start to hyperventilate when I am too far from my iPhone and have been guilty of breaking the 11th commandment in our home: Thou shalt not check thy phone at mealtime.
While I love having an iPad to easily scan email, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, I’m not yet convinced that it is my vehicle of choice for reading a good book. This is also true of my newly acquired “toy,” a Kindle, which was a rather thoughtful gift from my family.
I freely admit to loving the feel, the smell and the engagement of a real book. I still like turning pages and easily looking back to reread a passage and, when tempted, looking ahead to see where the plot is taking me.
I also ponder: Would those unforgettable family evenings gathered around our Harry Potter books have been as cozy and exciting with an iPad? And it’s just not the same picture when I imagine my husband, son and daughter reading electronic text, as when I recall all of us relishing the printed word in a book we couldn’t wait to delve into.
Trust me, I am the first to concede that e-book reading has many serious advantages. It’s great when you want to quickly get a word definition, highlight a favorite passage and transport a vast number of books so easily. (Who really wants to tote around copies of the Game of Thrones series?) And while, not having research to back this claim, personally, I do read much faster on a device that gives me the percentage left till “the end” and/or the number of pages left in a chapter. As environmental enthusiasts, I know the books I download save a lot of trees. But on a green note, we believe we can justify this by recycling a ton of books to our local schools and libraries each year so others can enjoy our favorites.
Thus, you see my dilemma, which doesn’t have an easy solution—at least not for me. So for the short-term, I will toggle between actual books and e-readers while I will avoid imagining a world without books—which seems vaguely familiar— anyone still have a copy of Fahrenheit 451?
PS: Have you read any good books lately?
About the Author
health enews staff is a group of experienced writers from our Advocate Health Care and Aurora Health Care sites, which also includes freelance or intern writers.
I am with you Linda! While I love my kindle, especially when reading in bed, I do miss paper books. I have also recently starting listening to audio books, which makes my commute more enjoyable. We are currently reading Harry Potter to my son and have opted for the hardback book.
My favorite book I have read/listen to recently was The Martian.
I am in complete agreement! My grandparents would be saddened by the electronic readers that have taken over by storm and the downsizing/loss of newpaper(s) and magazines of the millennium age! They were in the book business. I even miss the smell of their bookstore, those lovely rare and out of print books lining the shelves. There is nothing like the feel of paper, or looking at the high gloss of a beautifully printed magazine. I started reading books on a kindle and magazines on my iPad to reduce the clutter. I confess to holding on to the old books/magazines even still, years later. Like my grandparents and their beloved business, I can’t seem to part with the printed bound hard copy of a favorite. Where do we go from here?? My current read: The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd.
Great story–I love bookstores and try to visit often to buy “real books.” Read the Invention of Wings and loved it. Be sure to look up more information about the sisters–think you’ll find it interesting.
I love book stores, especially used book stores where the aroma is indescribably unique and, to me, intoxicating. I was given a Kindle as a gift from someone, tried it three times, hated it. It’s a cold machine that, for me, can never take the place of the tactile pleasure of a real book be it a paperback or a hardcover. I prefer hardcover but when traveling I’ll take a paperback as it fits easily into my purse. Now, in answer to the author’s question, yes, I have not one but two copies of “Fahrenheit-451.” One copy has Ray Bradbury’s autograph (it belonged to my late aunt) and one copy that isn’t autographed (the one I bought for myself in the mid ’50s).
I’m a book holdout here, too. The bookstore is my happy place and I love the smell, feel, and weight of an actual book. My house is full of them (to an almost embarrassing degree) and my kids’ collection is already out of hand.
I’ve contemplated an e-reader in recent years, but can never bring myself to buy one. The convenience could be nice, but I like my books.
Maybe someday. Maybe not.
I totally agree to everything everyone has said, but especially what you said about the tactile pleasure of a book!! I love physically turning the pages. I feel like when I start a book, I am starting an adventure and every page I turn moves me forward through that adventure. It is almost a physical feeling of “joy.” I know I am crazy because I have taken my Kindle with me to the airport, so proud of the fact that I am going to read the books I have downloaded – and then I am hypnotized and drawn in to the delights of the airport bookstore and before you know it, I have bought at least one hard copy book, if not more. Especially on vacation because that is my absolute favorite thing about being on vacation!!! I know I am certifiable but it looks like I will have lots of company at the “Institution.” 🙂
Nor am I a tech maven, but I have a special relationship with my iPad mini for books. I love that I can keep my entire library in my iPad; love the notes and search features, when reading books with lots of characters that are hard to keep straight, it’s easy to search names or notes for first mention of the characters; I keep many notes and after time has passed, scroll through my notes which makes the whole book come back to life; the dictionary – yes! However, I do most of my reading in bed, right before I go to sleep. I’ve found that the blue light emitted from the iPad disturbs my sleep so I’ve stopped using. Back to hard copy – ugh.
Good book – now reading The Road to Character, David Brooks.
Love reading the old-fashioned way. My 19 year old daughter and I just did an impulsive run to Target on Sunday night to purchase as many books as we could to jump start our commitment to summer reading!
I love my Kindle–can’t beat it for convenience. But i also love the smell and feel of books. So many bookstores are closing, and it’s a tragedy. I get a lot of books from the library, both paper and electronic. So easy to browse online, order, and pick up. I will often browse the shelves when I pick up books.
OOOOPS….a small opening in a slat of wood on a wooden porch…wooosh…it went…my Kindle, right in the middle of a wonderful mystery by Brad Thor about Federal Reserve, which I learned isn’t really a part of our U.S. government even though it is called “Federal Reserve”…75% done… Quandry because of the fall of the Kindle, all is lost, even though it was a gentle fall into sand….do I buy a new Kindle…? as I have so many recorded on it….and read quite quickly (still can’t figure out why that is true?)…OR how about our Library where so many wonderful books are held and shared with us at no cost, other than our taxes..one of many. But a book…to hold a real good book and treasure the printed word, curled up on a couch, on the beach (no fear that it can be destroyed by a sudden unexpected drop)…and oh the library … meeting some fascinating people who have wonderful recommendations…really talking with,not seating in front of each other with a “machine”. AHHHH conversing with another, sharing the printed word and learning some wonderful worlds to be explored.