I’m not one of those people who has been swayed by the digitisation of books. Ebooks…no. Kindle….no. iPad…well I have one but the only book on there is a free lonely planet one I couldn’t refuse. Books are meant to be made of paper, they are meant to held and they are meant to form a collection that sits proudly on our bookshelves.
And I’m sorry, but I don’t buy this whole it’s so much easier to carry around and I have all my books in one place argument. I have all my books in one place too…on my bookshelf. And why would I need all of my books at once? I’m only reading one! It’s just as easy to throw a book in your bag as it is a kindle or tablet.
For me, there is nothing like the feeling of a freshly bought book. Holding the weight of it in your hands, the wonderful smell of the paper (yes I like to breathe in the smell of a new book..what of it!) and actually being able to turn the page. It’s a simple act, but turning pages is what makes reading not only joyful, but it turns it into an experience. You get lost in it. Page after page after page of glorious printed paper. You don’t get that when you flick at a screen. Tim Minchin said it best in the lyrics of Quiet from the musical Matilda:
Like silence, but not really silent…
Just that still sort of quiet
Like the sound of a page being turned in a book,
Or a pause in a walk in the woods.
Just quiet. Curling up on the couch, laying out by the pool, sneaking a couple of chapters in the car while waiting to pick up your kids from school. Wherever your preferred place to read; paperbacks, hardbacks, printed words and printed photos are what make it.