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Nearly everyone said to go with the Kindle, except for the few diehards who said to stay with books.
(These were the same people who, when polled, said they preferred using an abacus to a calculator.)
But I went out on my own and conducted my own research and came to the conclusion that this was the right decision for me:
I decided to go with the Nook.
And I tried it. I really did.
But after a week, I returned it.
I know, you are all horrified.
The reality is I’m a Book Girl.
Although it is possible to make notes on the device, I found it incredibly arduous. Plus, there was no way to make smiley faces or stars! 😉 I didn’t like that I couldn’t refer to the back of the book. (You know, to remind me what the hell I was heading with my reading because, frankly, I need to be reminded). I didn’t like not being able to physically see how far along I was in my reading. I missed using a real bookmark – especially when the “save your page” feature didn’t really seem to work reliably. Despite all the reports from friends telling me that they are reading “so much more” with e-Readers, I found I was falling asleep almost immediately after starting to read! I guess I need to take notes when I read, or it’s lights out. Who knew? Even after just one week, I missed the idea of not going to the library. Benjamin Franklin was so friggin’ brilliant when he came up with that invention. When I finished my first book and I wasn’t dying to download another, I suddenly realized I do not want (or need) to own every book I read.
So I’m back on library books because I truly believe borrowing books is the most earth-friendly decision a person can make. And if I love the book enough after reading it, then I’ll buy it.
As for my decades of accumulated book clutter (as seen on the floor in the photo above), those are going to the library for the annual book sale. (I just haven’t said goodbye to them properly yet.)
And when I drop them off, I’m going to pick up a bunch of other books to borrow.
And then I’ll going home to listen to my transistor radio… and play with my abacus.
So… um… what have you been reading that you have loved?
I’ve been considering getting an e-reader for a long time because I read a lot of books, but I hate the clutter that they leave behind. In fact, a Facebook friend recently commented on my sloppy bookshelves which were in the backdrop of a photo. Can you imagine? (Thanks a lot, Todd!)
Anyway, I have been holding out on getting an e-reader for three reasons:
1) Sheer laziness: For a long time, I just couldn’t justify moving up “Research e-readers” in the queue ahead of “Buy new bra.” Guess what? Went to Victoria’s Secret yesterday! 😉
2) Fear. I am definitely afraid that the e-reader could become a chore, another gadget that I have to charge and worry about losing. I worry that I won’t like the experience of an e-reader because I like to write in my books. Back in 1940, Mortimer Adler told his readers in his article “How to Mark Up a Book” that:
The physical act of writing, with your own hand, brings words and sentences more sharply before your mind and preserves them better in your memory.
As a teacher, I could not agree with him more. And yeah, I know you can highlight and leave notes with these gadgets, but there is nothing like flipping through an old book and finding my old handwritten scribble to remind me where I was at a particular point in time. I pick up favorite old books all the time and giggle when I find: “This is sooo mom!” or “Make husband read this whole paragraph!” I’m not sure I’ll have that same experience with the e-reader.
3) There is something creepy about e-readers. I don’t know. I’m not anti-technology or anything, but it’s like when I found out one publisher of the latest version of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn had taker out the “n-word” and replaced it with the word “slave,” I got a little bent out of shape. Things felt all Big Brothery to me. I worry that libraries are going to start closing, and I love libraries – even though, these days, they seem to have become places where the mentally unstable like to hang out to avoid the inclement weather. I don’t know, for me, books are as much a part of my head as they are my heart. I’m not so sure I’ll feel that in an e-reader.
Still, Valentine’s Day is coming up, and all the stores seem to be insinuating that the best lovers buy their significant others e-readers, so yesterday, I drove around town trying out various e-devices. I needed to feel them in my own hands, see what they could and could not do.
And so I am definitely leaning in one direction, and I must admit, it is not the direction in which I thought I would be going.
Without dragging things out (you know, the way I usually do), I figured I’d ask you, my beloved readers, for your opinions.
Note: iPads are not in the running. (I don’t need all those bells and whistles. Plus I need to be able to read outside, and the iPad has too much glare.)
For those of you who have e-readers, can you tell me which one you have, what you love most about the one you have, and if you had a chance to do it all over again, if you would make the same purchase. If not, what would you choose now?