It was in August of 2017 that I decided to take the plunge and invest in an Amazon Kindle Paperwhite – one of the world’s most popular reading devices. At the time, the reasoning behind me purchasing one was simple – convenience.
The months prior to me finally purchasing an e-reader of my own were interesting – ordering paperbacks off online retailers and waiting days for them to get to me. Or casually browsing through books in book stores to eventually find (and purchase) a few that captured my attention.
And what’s the first thing we do when we purchase a new book?
Why, we flip it open, stick our nose into it, and take a deep breath.
Because no sensation is as euphoric as the aroma of a freshly purchased book. (Okay, maybe that’s too exaggerated a sentiment.)
Nevertheless, when it came to paperbacks, one of my major gripes was the latency between wanting a book and eventually getting one. That, and the fact that you always need to have a decent light source under which to read.
Enter the Kindle.
Over the course of the last 2 years, I have probably read well over six dozen books on my Kindle – and the simplest reason for why that figure is so high is because of the immediate availability of any book you desire on the Kindle store.
Also, e-books are far more inexpensive. And if you’re a voracious reader – purchasing a dozen paperbacks every two months can end up stressing your wallet. But then again, when it comes to a few certain books, I prefer the paperback over an e-book.
Most recently, I was looking out for Part 3 of ‘The Stormlight archives’ by Brandon Sanderson – Oathbringer. Surprisingly enough, at the time (October 2018), the paperback version of it with the original cover art was unavailable in India and the hardcover version cost about ₹2000 (no thanks, mate!). So I ended up settling for the e-book which costed a mere ₹400.
With the major boom of e-readers, starting from the early half of this decade, there has been concern surrounding the fate of paperbacks – and most importantly – the traditional concept of reading. Some say that e-readers are unnatural to use and do not compare to the “feel of having a book in your hand”. Some even say that e-readers aren’t as relevant as they used to be – with smartphones and tablets becoming the major devices used to cater to people’s reading needs.
But personally, I consider e-readers a blessing. Having access to any book I want (and saving paper in the process) is something that appeals to my thought process. Plus, being a predominantly night time reader, snuggling up under a blanket and reading a book on my Kindle with the lights out is quite an intimate experience in itself.
That being said, I still do purchase paperbacks. Currently, I am in the process of reading ‘The Wheel Of Time’ series by Robert Jordan and I have decided that I will purchase all of the series’ 14 odd books in the form of paperbacks.
Why? Because as much as I love my Kindle, nothing satisfies a bibliophile more than having his shelf expand with more and more books.
Cheers to paperbacks and to e-readers – both of which will continue to hold an equal stake of my heart for the near future.
What do you prefer? e-books? Or paperbacks? Drop a comment and let me know. 🙂