Monday, August 15, 2011

Books: Own or Borrow?

Do you prefer to own books or borrow them from a friend or the library?

This is the eternal book question really. When it comes down to it, you can add eBook to the mix. The trouble with Kindle (for me) is a similar problem to borrowing books from people or the library.  To me, books carry energy. There is something about picking up a beloved book you have read over and over again. There is an energy, a touch memory - something visceral, something I can feel.  For as long as I can remember, I have always wanted to keep THE book that I read.

When I was in middle school, I read my way through the library. Eventually, they gave me "preview books" and I wrote recommendations for the librarian about purchasing the books I was reading.  My biggest problem was that any time I read a book or even borrowed an album (vinyl) (cough* "Annie" Soundtrack), I wanted to check it out forever, but at the same time, it limited how many books I could check out next.

When I checked out "The NeverEnding Story" from the public library, the book was printed in red and green ink, depending on which part of the story was being told. It took everything I had to take that book back and I'm pretty sure that was after I had it checked out 2-3 times.  I finally found a copy of the book with the ink alternation, but it didn't have the energy of discover in it from my reading of it.  That was kind of when I realized that I really liked having the book I read.

Along came Kindle. I can honestly say that I don't think I have completed a single book in the Kindle and I have had mine a while. Part of the reason is that I think I buy a different type of book on Kindle than I buy regularly - I have a couple of non-fiction, a couple of books on Deafness, etc.  There's just something weird about it. I like that I can change the font. I like that I can read whjle I'm eating lunch. I don't like the electronic part of it - no pages, no texture, no cover to look at. No page numbers.  I'm sure it is wave of the future, but I sure do love me some actual books.



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