To Kindle or Not To Kindle

In the run up to my birthday last year, coloured envelopes and small parcels started to make their way through the letterbox, each one drawing out a little “Ooh!” of glee from me. I came home one of the days to find a rather decently sized parcel on the table, addressed to me. Not being one to wait until my actual birthday to open my presents, I quickly tore into it and pulled out:

Yes, my inital reaction was also an “Ooh!” but not quite of glee. It was shiny and new (and who doesn’t love something that fits that description?) but there’s something about technology that I can never seem to warm to. Enclosed was a note from my friends who had bought it for me: “To our travelling bookworm,” it read. It made perfect sense; I wanted to travel and I loved to read. But why wasn’t I absolutely over the moon about this new little gadget of mine?

Fellow bookworms, you can probably skip this paragraph because I am sure you know exactly why I couldn’t fully embrace the Kindle from the moment I saw it. The main problem with the Kindle is simple: it is not a book. There are no pages to turn, no spine to crack (if that’s your thing), no bookish smell and no last page to flip to then guiltily snap shut before finishing. You can’t determine how long it will take you to finish it by a quick glance at where your bookmark sits. If you have read my previous book-related post you will already know that I am an irredeemable bibliophile and that love extends from the front covers of a book right down to its content.

It’s no wonder then that this thin, grey oblong did nothing for me. I was certainly curious but also trepidant and it ended up sitting in my desk drawer for a good two months before I finally decided that I ought to try and use it. A year later and I now read most of my books on the Kindle; not because I prefer it to a book (sacrilege!) but because it is incredibly handy. I plan to travel and already have the horrible task ahead of me of having to sell the majority of the books I own – adding to that collection is simply not an option at the moment. There is also a feature on it that I am quite fond of: the inbuilt dictionary. Another plus is that most of the Classics are available for free.

If my friends hadn’t had the foresight to buy me such a practical little gadget, I would never have bought one for myself and I understand other bookworms who refuse to do so. However, now that I own one I can see just how useful it is going to be when I have to carry my life on my back.

The verdict:
No, I do not love it.
No, it is never going to be better than a book.
But: Yes, it is worth having if you plan to move around a lot.

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1 Response

  1. Sarah says:

    Well said! I adore books. Always have, always will. But for practicality I actually really enjoy the Kindle. I'll still buy my absolute favourite authors and books in 'real' form though!

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