Discussion: Ebooks and Print Books

I used to say I would never read an ebook. Well, I lied. Ebooks have become an essential part of my reading experience. I currently read more ebooks than I do print books. Although I’ve learned to love ebooks, I still love print books as well. And, I don’t think you necessarily have to choose one or the other.

Here are 5 reasons I love ebooks and 5 reasons why I still cannot give up print books.

WHY I LOVE EBOOKS

  1. I can take it anywhere with me.

When I’m on the go, it’s usually just my keys and my phone, which my wallet is now conveniently attached to. With my books on my phone, it’s made living a bookish life easier. I pull out my book when I’m in line, when I’m in the car, when I’m in a waiting room, and just about anywhere I have a few minutes to spare. These moments have added up to a lot of pages read.

  1. Language barriers can be minimized.

Sometimes books have words or phrases in different languages that I might not understand. With the translate feature on my reading app, it’s easy to find out what most words or phrases mean by highlighting and selecting translate. Of course, not all languages are available, but it’s still helpful. This is one of my favorite features.

  1. Highlighting and taking notes are at the palm of my hands.

I like annotating because it helps me process information and helps with my recall. I don’t need additional accessories to highlight favorite quotes or to write thoughts down; my finger(s) will do the trick. I can look over my annotations by clicking on my notebook. This is especially helpful to refer back to when I’m writing a review or when I just want to bask in the warmth of a lovely scene.

  1. There is minimal lag in delivery.

Being a mood reader means I usually read what I feel like at the moment. Rather than a planned TBR, I often discover it along the way. With nearly instantaneous delivery while I sit at home, I can read a book right away, unless I’m checking it out from the library and there are a few people in line. On the other hand, it will take longer to get a book delivered, and delivery times are not always reliable either.

  1. The savings can be significant.

The financial strain of reading can be significantly reduced. New hardcover books can cost as much as USD$ 30 while their ebook counterparts may be half that, or even less when on sale. Because I mostly read ebooks now, a few dollars can go a long way.

…BUT STILL CANNOT GIVE UP PRINT BOOKS

  1. I take my time when reading print books.

I noticed I read a little slower when I have an print book open. After switching to mostly ebooks, this bothered me until I realized what was going on: I read nearly every word. I don’t feel as rushed when I have a book in hand, and I’m also much more calm for some reason.

  1. My hands are thankful.

I have a tendency to binge and to stay up all night to finish a book. When I’m ready to set my phone down, my hands have turned into lobster claws and are likely cramping. Books do not give me the same aches and pains because I am much more likely to set my book down on a table to read it than I am with my phone.

  1. The presence of a physical book is comforting.

I love being able to hug a book especially if it was particularly good. The physical act of closing a book when a series ends is also very satisfying–you’re closing a chapter on a life you’ve just lived. Both bring comfort in different ways. Reading an ebook and hugging my phone hasn’t given me the same kind of comfort.

  1. I love seeing books on my shelves.

This sounds materialistic of me but hear me out. I didn’t always like reading–gasp!–but when dislike turned into love, the library became a sanctuary. We couldn’t afford many books when I was growing up, so now that I can, I try to fill my shelves when possible. I’m creating my own personal sanctuary at home and trying to share my love of reading with my family–so far my nieces are resisting it.

  1. I’m always afraid something will happen to my ebooks.

Reformatting portable hard drives, laptops refusing to turn on, and phones crashing instilled in me a need for backups, and in some cases, backups of backups. Electronics and the cloud are great, but there’s always a possibility they can fail you. These were traumatic experiences because I couldn’t recover important documents and photos. When I love a book, a print copy sometimes serve as my backup of the ebook. It gives me a sense of security.

What are your thoughts? Do you read both formats? Are you clearly one side over the other? Or, maybe it doesn’t matter and a book is a book? I would to hear what you think!

2 thoughts on “Discussion: Ebooks and Print Books

  1. I wanted an ereader as soon as they came out, but when the price dropped enough for me to want to buy it. How useful it would be to have all of my books in one place! I was in college when the first Kindle came out and extremely short on space. Having to leave most of my books at home was painful. Years later, though, I find I much prefer the physical book. Ereaders are certainly useful, but there’s something about smelling and feeling the book that can’t be replicated in any way.

    Liked by 1 person

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