Book or E-Reader?

So what do you think? It seems that all of a sudden, to me anyway, the prefered reading source is fast becoming the e-reader. I’ve seen lots of other people using them but never used one myself. It’s a pity that the manufacturers don’t give a fourteen day test period so I can try one. My friends and colleagues who have bought them all say, without any dissenters, that they are excellent; but are they justifying another purchase which will end up on a shelf or at the back of a cupboard or are they a real breakthrough? I’d like to examine the evidence and try to be as impartial as I can be, so I thought I might look at the pro’s and con’s of them both. I do have some Kindle and Kobo books on my laptop but I have yet to read more than a couple of pages.

E-Reader – (From what I am told/read)

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Can hold thousands of books
  • Adjustable font size
  • Long battery life
  • Easy to read screen
  • Some have built-in dictionary
  • Some books are free or on offer
  • It’s another electronic gizmo
  • Needs charging from a power source
  • You can’t pass the book around once you’ve read it
  • It’s not a book
  • You don’t get that impression of how far through the story you are
  • After working with computers all day/evening – would I want to curl up in bed with another type?

Books – (From my experience)

  • Available almost anywhere
  • Low cost (Generally – especially if you buy second-hand, as I do)
  • It’s a book – feel, smell and the page turning experience
  • Never goes flat – doesn’t need charging
  • Simply bookmarking it allows you to see how far into the story you are
  • You can see what others are currently reading, when on the train
  • Continual source of reference
  • Looks good on a bookshelf
  • Exciting to browse amongst
  • Can be bulky and heavy to carry, especially when travelling/holiday etc – hardbacks particularly
  • Fonts can be small and difficult to read in low light
  • Pages can fall out in some circumstances
  • Can be defaced

So looking at the evidence, I can see a place for the e-reader, particularly for people who travel a lot or are going on holiday. But unless someone gives me one I can’t see the additional costs of an e-reader tempting me away from the real thing; for the time being anyway.

What about you?

2 thoughts on “Book or E-Reader?

  1. I like them both, but I have to admit that I like paper books more. I love going into a used bookstore and browsing to my heart’s content, or to stroll through a book fair or a chain bookstore of new books, imagining the possibilities.

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