As I open the doors to the bookstore, the gush of air tickles my toes and my eyes glance over to what welcomes me. An array of e-readers with a coordinating colored cover in any color, from magenta to burnt orange. I’ve never paid much attention to the choices when it comes to digital book readers. The Kindle, Nook, or the iPad, for some reason, have no allure for me. I understand the validity of those who do choose to read their words in this form. The readers are light, books can be downloaded in a matter of seconds, and they are cheaper than their hardbound counterparts.
These are not convincing reasons for me to make the switch. I’ve always had a love affair with office supplies, especially paper. I am still very much a paper calendar girl. One of my favorite past times is gliding a pen across a card, note, or even a check. Turning the page of a book is exhilarating to me and in my mind, you can’t experience that feeling with an electronic medium. Just recently, I read a passage in The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Schwalbe where he aptly describes what it means to him when he reads the paper version of a book:
One of the many things I love about bound books is their sheer physicality. Electronic books live out of sight and out of mind. But printed books have body, presence. Sure, sometimes they’ll elude you by hiding in improbable place: in a box full of old picture frames, say, or in a laundry basket, wrapped in a sweatshirt. But at other times they’ll confront you, and you’ll literally stumble over some tomes you hadn’t thought about in weeks or years. I often seek electronic books, but they never come after me. They may make me feel, but I don’t feel them. They are all soul with no flesh, no texture and no weight.
I found myself nodding my head up and down after reading this passage. Just glancing at the cover of a good book (or even a bad one) creates an emotion that is a part of me. It’s not only the emotion, but the whole process of going to the bookstore, walking through the aisles, and smelling all the various aromas: coffee in the cafe, the scent of new untouched pages, and the idea that a book you would never consider reading grabs your attention simply because you pick it up and read the opening line. There is a sense of coming home when I enter a bookstore. It is almost as if I feel all the books hugging me at once.
How do you prefer reading your words? What are some of your most recent book recommendations? Would love to hear your words.