A few weeks ago someone asked me which I prefer, book or e-book? For me, the answer was easy. Printed book wins hands down. When asked why, I told them that as an avid reader there is something about the feel a physical book has. I get more enjoyment when reading it compared to reading via my iPad. Now don’t get me wrong I love my iPad. It’s one of the greatest inventions since sliced bread. But for me, reading a book on it just doesn’t feel right. It feels cold and lifeless. I have trouble getting lost in the story. Don’t ask me why that is, it just is.
Another advantage to reading physical books is the collection you build up in your library; the endless spines displayed in your bookcase. I have lost count the times I have just stood in front of my books just staring at the sheer volume of wonderful books I have. Also, whenever a friend or family member wants to borrow a book they can, but if it’s an e-book, well that’s just a little more difficult to agree to. I know I would sit in a corner rocking back and forth if I had to go without my iPad for more than a couple of days.
Of course, there are people who have claimed to have gone over to the dark side and now only read e-books. They say the convenience of not having to carry around a book, as well as having a whole library at their fingertips is so much better than printed books. They also say the cost of some e-books is so much cheaper than the printed version that they are saving a bundle. Well who can argue with that? I know I can’t. But I will stick to my paperbacks and hardcovers all the same thank you and it seems there are many more out there who feel the same as I do.
In India last week the 10th National Book fair, which lasted ten days, was reportedly one of the most successful book fairs they’ve had. It was reported that on the last day there were at least 40,000 people who attended the fair, eager to mingle with writers and publishers as well as pick up a few of the latest releases available.
As long as there are readers who prefer printed and readers who prefer digital, this debate will continue. Maybe one day I will convert but I highly doubt it.