Books are Best

We are purchasing some Kindles for our young people to use whilst they stay with us at work, to encourage even more reading (I’ve got the kids reading crazy at the moment!) and I just can’t get my head around them.

Being brought up surrounded by books, my librarian mother had me reading before I started school. Much to my teachers disgust, I was already reading above my age and I was disruptive and awful in class because I was bored. My teachers carried on regardless sending me home with picture books, which I ignored whole-heartedly, until they gave me something more my ability.

Books were free for us at home, and these are days before Cartoon Network, Disney Channel and Nickelodeon played trash for 12 hours a day. Kids TV was from 3 to 5 on two channels. The good-old days! But the principle is the same, Mama Pigeon used books to shut me up so she could get on with things.

I love books. Somewhat obsessively. For those who read the blog often, you will have read my drool covered post about my Enid Blyton books last week, and have slightly more insight to the madness. But for those who haven’t…. I.LOVE.BOOKS.

I love them. Am in love with them. I love how they feel, I love how they look and I love how they smell.

One of my young people tried to win me over by demonstrating some bits and bobs on the Kindle yesterday. I let him do his spiel, and then gently took it from him, sniffed it, shook my head and promptly handed it back.

‘Doesn’t smell right.’

‘What?’ Was the chorus of voices I got from five 14-15 year olds, followed by a good-humoured, ‘You are so weird.’

I get the second part daily.

I just like having a book for keeps, and on a Kindle, it doesn’t feel permanent enough. It’s like having the CD, and not just the MP3.

Technology can fail you….oh no…I’m out of battery! The paperback will always win that battle! I seriously don’t like technology fail…

And can you really curl up with a Kindle? I think the nature of its plasticky-ness (It’s a word!) makes me feel it is only for reading Sci-Fi. And I think the only sci-fi novel we own is H.G Wells’ War of the Worlds.

Books crease. Books are tangible. Books are charming. Books mean you have to juggle your cup of tea  and biscuit as you turn the pages.

The only benefit I can see to a Kindle is that you don’t have to take SO many books in your suitcase on holiday…. but that would be the ONLY time I’d use it. And to be fair…I’d probably just pack less shoes… you can’t walk about and read at the same time anyway….

Perhaps if they injected some sort of old book smell into them? I’d probably find them more appealing if they did that.

So that’s settled then…I don’t understand Kindles…but that is only because they don’t understand me.


12 responses to “Books are Best

  1. It is one of the most amusing post on love for books I have read in recent times. I agree completely with you that Kindle is just not same as book. Maybe if it was foldable as book and almost same weight, feel, smell as that of book, it would have been better. It might be good if Kindle had pages as well. Only extra thing could have been that you can choose it to become a particular book that you are wanting to read.

  2. LOVE my kindle. I read about twice as much because of it. Much lighter and smaller to slip in my bag, where it lives. I can download a book in an instant, no need to wait to hit the shops or for a delivery to arrive from amazon. It took less than 6 months for it to pay for itself because the books are cheaper. You also don’t have that awkward lying on your side dead arm page turning problem. Totally get what you mean about it not being tangible and all my face books are still of the paper-musty-smelling variety, but I gobble up books DAILY and I can get my next fix instantly whether I’m in the country miles from a bookshop let alone a library or in a crappy city hotel room. Also the way you can try the first few chapters for FREE is amazeballs so then I can see if it’s worth parting with my hard earned pennies for. Classics are free as a bird and I can make the font bigger when I leave my glasses at home. I’ll let you borrow mine this weekend, and you can play properly. If you love it I won’t tell!!

  3. You know exactly how I feel about FREE stuff, especially when it comes to books. Hmmmmm… I’ll have a try this weekend…no promises I won’t pull faces…but don’t tell my books….I don’t want them to think i’m cheating on them.

  4. Booo Kindles – totally agree with this post. And thanks for coming to Her Umbrella! 🙂


  5. ‘Doesn’t smell right’ I nodded in agreement.
    I have a very small house, we left boxes of clothes, dvd’s etc at my parents house, but somehow managed to squeeze in 4 bookshelves here.. reading obsessed and hope by the time I have kids they’re flipping through a paper back, not a touch screen!

    • I think we have to keep the physical book alive! Look what happened to the video! I am one of the last generations who says ‘Whack a video on’. I don’t want books to phase out 😦

  6. And can you write in the margins of a Kindle?

  7. Hmm it seems like your blog ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I wrote and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I as well am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to the whole thing. Do you have any helpful hints for beginner blog writers? I’d certainly appreciate it.

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