This is my first discussion post! I would happily hand over glasses of champagne and petits-fours but it is 11 in the morning, let’s stick to orange juice with bread and jam.
Once upon a time, there was an avid reader who had lost the way to the Book Country. Fortunately, she met the Internet fairies on her way to Boredom Town. The endearing fairies told the avid reader that in order to find happiness again, she should move her lazy bottom and create a blog about something she really liked. The avid reader hesitated for a while, thinking how hard it would be to link beautiful pages filled with stories to something as impersonal as a blue screen. However, the fairies reassured the avid reader, telling her a blog would open a thousands doors for her to feed her passion.
How right those fairies were.
Not only did the avid reader’s passion take a complete new level of obsession, but her narrow-minded ideas also got flushed in the toilets.
I am not ashamed to say I was one of those people who thought eBooks meant the end of physical books. I saw them as little electronic warriors slowly marching towards our bookcases to slash hundred of pages with laser guns (the one from Star Wars). Another reason I did not trust them was that, as a glasses person and with the terrible eyesight I inherited at birth, I was sure whatever was used to read them would finish off that poor sight. I had left the world of books and reading for a few years and was coming back to a brand new era. You can understand why I was reluctant.
Right now, the usual advantages of eBooks are rushing through your mind and you might be thinking I am insane. That part is true, but it’s not the subject here. I know what you are about to tell me.
- eBooks are handy! You can carry around a thousand books in one object. How cool is that? Nowadays, people don’t clutter their bags with 10 books. Moreover, I am pretty sure doctors would find it better for your back if you did not.
- eBooks are cheaper! Well, most of the time. I still come across paperbacks that are less expensive, but are usually not released before another hundred months.
- eBooks get an earlier release date! That argument is nasty. Very nasty. Release dates for paperbacks are a nightmare.
- eBooks make your blogger life easier! You can highlight anything you want, there is no risk of losing your page. You can spill water on your electronic device, the book won’t be ruined. Still, I advise you not to do this, as you might have trouble using the reader afterwards.
- eBooks are the future! (over-enthusiastic e-reader). Hm, they’re actually our present, but I get the idea.
- NetGalley! What the hell is that? (yep, at the time, I did not know)
Four months ago, I would have told you to shut it. I would never betray my physical books, going so far as to deny all the points above in all bad faith.
When I started blogging about books, I focused on the ones I already owned, and the ones from the library. It turned out I did not possess that many books and I quickly got tired of the classics the university library was nicely letting me borrow.
Until one cold day of winter, the fairies disappear and the library witch banished me from the place for one entire week. I was all alone, in the dark, with no food for my brain. What was I supposed to do?
I caved in! With the encouragements of fellow bloggers, I took a look at eBooks, realized I could read them on the iPad, and took the jump.
After a week of sharing my nights (and days) with eBooks, I was puzzled. I finally recognized the benefits of them (being stuck in a queue for an hour helped the cause). But, (because it can’t be that easy) I was still unsure whether this would work for me. My eyes were so tired that after a couple of hours I needed a break. I don’t have to remind you how harrowing being forced to put down a book is. It was torture. Still, it was less painful that when, in a middle of a sentence, the unmistakable Apple Logo appeared on the screen suddenly to tell me “Stop, I ran out of juice, thank Steve Jobs for those idiotic short batteries and cry your eyes out because it’s gonna take me forever to charge.”
My last defense vanished when one of my most anticipated read appeared on Amazon with an amazingly close release date on Kindle and an extraordinarily far away release in paperback. I cursed, screamed the world was unfair, and slammed the MacBook shut. I went to my hubby, expecting a shoulder to cry on. He stared at me, opened his own laptop, and bought the book. This was the moment I realized I had joined the dark forces. I just could not bring myself to make the first move.
The doors to Heaven (or Ali Baba’s cavern, whatever suits your mood) opened. I managed to find books I could not get a physical copy of (yes, I am talking about you, The Cuckoo’s Calling), grab some of the newest releases I really wanted to give a try to, and consider myself a real book blogger. Then I discovered NetGalley and I was forever lost in the E-world.
Okay, I still love dearly all the paperbacks and the few hardcovers I own. I won’t stop buying physical copies. But! I tend to check the Kindle option before the paperback one, now.
This looks more a fairy-tale than a discussion post, for this, I apologize. I only wanted to thank you bloggers for helping me understand it’s the 21st century and eBooks are not evil.
To let you know how far the changing went, I am now waiting for my Kindle Paperwhite and seriously considering getting the Kindle unlimited.
What’s your experience with eBooks? Did you adopt them right away? Have you given up on physical books? How do you split your reads between eBooks and physical copies? What do you find most interesting with eBooks? What kind of e-reader do you use? Can you think of more pros for eBooks besides the ones I talked about?
Yep, that’s an awful lot of questions but I’m nosy, you already knew that!