An Ebook Love Affair
Last year, I did this post on readers versus collectors. Generally book lovers tend to lean towards one of either of these categories – either they just want to consume books, often lending them in the library, or they like collecting them and have them matching and looking pretty on their shelves. I fell solidly in the collector category. I wanted to own all of the books, keeping them in pristine condition even when reading. But when I finally reached a breaking point this summer, I fell in love with my Kindle.
The reason of this sudden change is the realisation that I just cannot house more books than I already own. I just can’t. My shelves are full, and there is no room to make more shelves. I don’t want my books to become a safety hazard, lying in wait for me to trip over them and break something. And honestly though, do I really need more than 500 books? Do I really have 500 favourites?
The answer for me was obviously, no. Plenty of books that I own and read, I won’t ever read again. Either they’re just not that reread worthy, or I didn’t enjoy them. And those books need to go – so I’ve been trading more books or donating them to a charity shop. But since I read over a hundred books a year, I do need to get books somehow. I tried going to the library, but they just don’t have a big enough collection to support my habit. Enter: my Kindle.
Over the years I’ve had my Kindle I almost solely used it for review books. It’s so much easier to read Netgalley books on the nice e-ink screen than it’s to stare yourself into a headache on a computer screen. However, I never bought any ebooks, because I wanted to have something to touch, to look at, something physical. If I was to spend money I wanted to gratification of truly noticing I was owning something. Ebooks were severely lacking in this respect.
This summer I got thinking about how I used to consume books when I was young. I used to get all of my books from the library. Even favourites I would just borrow over and over again, instead of buying them. I didn’t mind not owning them. It was the stories I was interested in, not the book itself.
So, with my new insights in my old habits, I started investing in some ebooks. I tried some really cheap ones, see if I enjoyed reading books on my Kindle. And I love it. Holding a Kindle is just so much easier, I read faster, and the books don’t take any space. My eyes tend to get kind of tired and fuzzy in the evenings, and where I’ll have to squint with small print books (hello headache), I can just adjust the font to be bigger and more easy to read.
Instead of buying a book I’ve seen around in the blogosphere in an expensive paperback edition, I’ll just wait for it to go on sale for $4.99 or even less. Because the exchange rate between dollars and euros is really low right now, buying ebooks is incredibly cheap for em, even when in the US the ebook is the same price as the paperback. If the book is disappointing, I delete it, guilt-free. There is no book to get rid of, no item clogging up my home. Reading ebooks is completely about the story itself, and I love how I can just focus on the story that way. Reading on my Kindle is incredibly similar to the way I used to read library books when I was young. I can read whatever looks good, without any guilt. Spending $1.99 and hating a book is quite different from spending $15.
Since I’m reverting a lot of my reading to my Kindle, I find myself reading more. Do you enjoy ebooks? Do you find you have different reading attitudes concerning ebooks and physical books?