Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Book Chat: E-books vs. Print

I've touched on my feelings about e-books a few times, but it's been a while since I've done a full post on the subject. After reading my Kindle almost exclusively last year while I was traveling and then moving back to a city with a library card a few months ago, I definitely have some more defined thoughts on the topic now. Luckily, Jessica chose e-books vs. print books for the Book Chat topic this week, so you get to read all about my opinions today! :)

all images via @mcstroup on Instagram
Typically, I only use my Kindle when I'm traveling. I almost never read it at home unless I'm finishing up a book I started while on a trip. E-readers are great travel companions for a few reasons:
  • They are relatively thin, even with a sturdy case, which makes them easy to slip into purses or other carry-ons.
  • Instead of carrying your current read, a book for when you finish, and a back-up (or two) in case you finish that one, you only need to pack one item.
  • If you do run out of books to read on the road, you can easily download a new one right on your device. (My Kindle has 3G, which makes this even easier.)
  • Similarly, when you finish a book on the road, you don't have to pack it home or figure out how else to get rid of it.
I also really like the dictionary feature on the Kindle. I can click on any word to see the definition. As a logophile, this can be quite distracting for me. ;) Even if I know the definition of a particular word, sometimes I like to check out the actual definitions if I think the author could have chosen a synonym with a more aptly suited connotation.

    all images via @mcstroup on Instagram
    Despite all these perks of an e-reader, however, nothing can replace the feel of a "real" book. There's nothing quite like perusing the shelves of a library or bookshelf. I miss seeing the cover art of my book when I open a novel on my Kindle. I also like to flip back and forth in books often, and this is much harder to do on the Kindle. Overall, when in my own home and convenience isn't an issue, I'll pick a paper-and-ink book over an e-book any day.

    What do you think? Do you own an e-reader? Would you ever consider buying one?



    Anonymous said...

    I love my kindle for traveling. When I was working abroad, I only packed my Kindle. Now that I'm not traveling, I even use it when I'm just sitting around at home - it's better when I want to eat and read :) But I definitely missed having my hundreds of books at my disposal. Sometimes you just want to flip through a book to find that one passage.

    Kelsey said...

    I'm like you, I HAVE to have a paper copy of books, I have a Nook but I honestly haven't bought more than two books on it, I just love the thought of getting to see a physical book. And I always try to give away my books when I'm done reading them, I try to match up a book with a friend and send it there way. Just a fun way to "pay it forward" type thing :)

    Jenn @ Lost in the Right Direction said...

    I agree with this, it took me so long to get an ereader because I was so against them. However, when I went on vacation to the Bahamas I read three books and if I didn't have my ereader, I couldn't have done that and my pack would have been heavier. However, I still much prefer paper books and will only buy on my ereader if the book is significantly cheaper, like the one I am reading now.

    Anonymous said...

    I love the feeling of a real book too but I love the convience of digital as well. Most of my traveling is around town shuffling my children from one activity to another but it's really nice to open my Kindle read whatever strikes my mood.

    Anonymous said...

    I am 100% against e-readers. I love everything about books and have the makings of my own personal library in my tiny apartment. Last I checked, I owned over 200 books. They are an addiction I can't give up. Unless I can download every book I currently own for free onto an e-reader, I'm not getting one.

    Also, I don't have to charge a book. ^_^

    Cat said...

    I was never against e-readers, but didn't think I would get one for myself. Then I did a scavenger hunt at an event and one of the "hunters" would win a Kindle - it was me! (Okay, it was my sister, but she didn't want it.) It was great to take to work to read on my lunch break, and I really loved being able to read Oprah's Book Club book on it with her extra comments and stuff.
    But I haven't touched it at all this year.. And it's October. I mostly check out books from the library! I love to do that. If I knew better how to get books on the Kindle, I could see myself using it again. Definitely for travel if I had books on there to read. But I like real books better :)

    Fran said...

    I'm so with you on the feel of a real book - I also go back and forth a lot which is super hard on an e-reader

    Colette said...

    I really need to give traveling with an e-reader a try. I always end up with very heavy carry-on because I do try and stick 3-4 books in it!

    K said...

    You absolutely nailed it. Both have perks. Both are wonderful.

    I love your pictures, too!

    Anonymous said...

    If an ebook is cheaper than the print copy, I'll buy the ebook, unless it is an author that I love. Then, I'll buy it in print. If the print copy is under $10 and around the same price as the ebook, I will go ahead and buy it in print. I just got a new iPad mini, so I will probably buy a lot of ebooks right now, lol.

    Amanda said...

    I don't own an ereader. I'm not completely opposed to them. I see the benefit. But I don't think I'll ever buy one for myself, but if I got it as a gift I would definitely use it. I still do like actually holding the book in my hands. Honestly, I'm just glad people are reading at all, so if an ereader makes it easier, go for it.