Book vs Kindle - Sherlock Holmes

The Unresolved Case of the Kindle

I am a bookworm. A real one. I could nearly live on books if paper was tastier. Ok, kidding… But what about the Kindle, is it better than the books? Maybe Sherlock can help me resolve this case: the book or the Kindle?

The Book vs the Kindle

As I mainly read while commuting and a bit at home, I was wondering if the e-readers were for me. If I were a robot, the answer would be pretty straight forward: true (hum, I mean, yes)! Ok, that’s a very binary answer, let me explain it a bit more.
If you consider that carrying a thousand of books with you, in a relatively light and thin device with a good autonomy and readability, then yes, it’s perfect for you. Why don’t you have one already? Go! (technical details here if you’re interested)
But, I’m not a robot, I’m sure of it, Google asked and I passed the test ;)

So I can be emotionally attached to things, books for example. I really enjoy having a book in my hands, feeling its weight, the smooth roughness of paper, and leaf through it. What I also like is to see the thickness of the book and my progress while reading. You know, just like a kid proudly saying “Look, I read that much!”.

And what about the books on the shelves? Isn’t it a great decoration and don’t you have a certain sense of self-accomplishment when you have read them all? And don’t you want to share your passion and lend some books to your relatives?
Plus, I’m watching screens all day long, so my eyes are glad to see paper sometimes.

Books - Game Of Thrones Collection - Bookshelf
A nice bookshelf full of the Game of Thrones collection

So, I decided to give it a try and I borrowed a Kindle to my “bookslug” (this kind of worm reads less and is way slower than a proper bookworm).
At first, I really missed the feeling of holding the book and turning the pages. And what was the most frustrating thing for me was the page real estate. I was lost. There was no “right-hand page” and “left-hand page”, only something in the middle that displays some other text when you press a button. Strange.

My advice here, is to start with a book you’re really eager to read, a page turner, so you’ll be more focused on the content than the actual frame around it.

At the same time, the big advantage I immediately saw was the room it takes in my bag: it’s flat and quite thin, compared to my big books. How convenient! I don’t have to carry a bag that looks like I’m moving every day!
And when you finish a book, you don’t have to carry two books with you…

One big surprise also: there are free books! Check that collection! Okay, you will not find the latest book of Game of Thrones or, wait… is there a new book? No, not yet. Pleeeaase Mr Martin, it cannot end like this, you have to write a few more books! Ok, back to our business, the free books that I find the most interesting are not always very recent (the majority of them are free “thanks to” an expired copyright). But I’m perfectly happy with that as I’m a big fan of Classics: from Arthur Conan Doyle to Brahm Stoker or Jules Verne to Victor Hugo (yes, there are free books in French and many other languages too :)!

Kindle Bookshelf
The Kindle. Not very visual, but less of a hassle when you need to move

Well, my dear Sherlock, I’m sorry to hear you say that this case is not solved. But let me give you my mind about this. I think that the Kindle and other e-readers are pretty good, even though I was very sceptical about it at the beginning. We cannot stop progress, can’t we? Those devices may be a good match to our needs in our connected life. But as for me, I have no problem to unplug everything and go device-free, network-free in the wild, and I still enjoy the good ol’ books very much.

As I said earlier, if you want to make the big jump and switch to the eBook, my advice is to take a captivating book, so you’ll be focused on the story rather than the device.
So, read on, books don’t belong to the past yet! And remember that:

A room without books is like a body without a soul.- Marcus Cicero


By the way, if you are curious about what I’m currently reading, have a look at the sidebar ;)