Paper or Plastic?

Here’s the question from Booking Through Thursday (Wednesday?):

  • Do you read e-Books?
  • If so, how? On your computer, or a PDA?
  • Or are you a paper purist? Why?

Here’s my answer:  No,  I don’t read e-books.  There are primarily two reasons for this.  One is practical.  The other is more…philosophical.  The first reason is that I sit at a computer all day reading and/or writing legal documents, and I have bad eyesight.  (Okay, maybe that’s two reasons, but there’s a definite cause-and-effect relationship.) 

The second reason is that I just love honest-to-God, printed-on-paper books.  I love feeling the heft of a book in my hands, the soft leather of an old book cover, or the texture of an embellished binding.    I love it that I can walk into a bookstore or a library, and the smell of the books will immediately lower my blood pressure.  I love how books look standing up on a bookshelf or lying on a coffee table or on a desk. I love it that someone wrote “Feb. 11, 1902” and “Class of [19]03” in the margins of my 1889 Berlitz First-year French primer.  The experience of reading for me has always been about more than just the text on the page, and having a real book is an important part of that experience.

7 thoughts on “Paper or Plastic?

  1. ennavic May 30, 2007 / 6:39 pm

    Great answer – I agree entirely.

  2. Literary Feline May 30, 2007 / 9:04 pm

    My response seems so incomplete after reading so many great ones, like yours. I too love being surrounded by books. There’s something much more personal about books. Like a hand written letter sent the old fashioned way, through the postal service. 🙂

  3. Chris May 31, 2007 / 5:55 am

    I agree too. I don’t know what I’d do if there were no bookstores.

  4. Anna May 31, 2007 / 9:49 am

    I enjoyed reading your BTT answers! 🙂

  5. Janiejane May 31, 2007 / 3:33 pm

    I agree – I love the physical presence of books.

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