The End of Paperbacks

Electronic readers are everywhere. This will be the future, it is inevitable. As iPods overtook CDs, which overtook cassettes, so the electronic readers will replace the delightfully cumbersome paperback novels that line our shelves. It was only a matter of time for the comfort of a well-worn novel to fall by the wayside for the ability to carry hundreds of books at once.

This is not to say that Kindles, Readers and other brands of this device are not without advantages. On average $200 to $400, they are certainly not a bad investment in comparison to a library full of hardbacks. There are hundreds of thousands of ebooks available to purchase with some available for free. They have bookmark functions and sophisticated screens meant to mimic the real thing. Electronic readers hold up to hundreds of books, allowing for mood rather than availability to decide your reading material.

Eventually libraries will be obsolete and books will be museum pieces, and the sensation of reading will be forever different. But for me, the tactile experience of a book, an actual book, is part of the magic. The smell of old pages, the smoothness of a worn cover, the satisfaction of picking up a book and remembering the last time you held it, these things are part of the experience. And something I will not give up.

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This work by H.E. Saunders is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.