Thursday, 17 January 2013

Books Vs Kindles

Rush hour on the London Underground at night and there is a young looking businessman sat engaged in his  new novel that he's just downloaded to his Kindle. So is the woman at the side of you, and the woman at the other the side of you. You don't know what they are reading but that single piece of technology is enough to keep owners fully enthralled in the tales of their story. What's my point in telling you this? Well I am sat here reading a paperback book, full of crisp pages that I can flick through so wonderfully with my fingers and colourful illustrations that make me want to pull that book out of my - equally as wonderful - Ted Baker bag.

I love books - and by that I mean real paper/hardback books. They align my empty shelves wonderfully, full of truth, secrets and fantasy that I secretly wish my life was like. The point is, I don't get that same feeling with Kindles. Now, don't misunderstand me - Kindles are a fantastic development in technology that allows us to have the option to carry many books around without the weight in our bags. They also allow access to thousands of new releases within seconds - just click download and there it is at your fingertips. They really do have their perks that make peoples lives - like the businessman on the train - just that little bit easier. But maybe that is the problem; nowadays people want things now and convenience is our number one priority. There is no reason we shouldn't have that choice of ease, however, there is just something so spectacular and special about nipping into a quaint little book shop and spending time being taken in by the quirky book covers and the smell of old books that have been passed through generations. Even visiting W H Smiths, I find interesting. I tend to set up camp in there for at least half an hour, sit on the floor and flick away through the new books placed on the shelf (you don't have to sit on the floor though!). 

Without books we wouldn't have libraries. Granted, they have audio, DVD and Internet sections now but it would not be a library without the paper element. My favourite book can't 'break' - unless I drop it in the bath or something - whereas kindles can. Technology can. Laid in bed at night, do families want to read stories to their children from a kindle or do they want them to interact with colours, words and imagery. If you wish to unwind at evening without the television, then Kindles will restrict your mind from switching off because it's technology based. We work with technology everyday and so, maybe, we need that bit of normality that your paperback book can provide. Laid at the side of the pool on holiday, while your sipping on your umbrella cocktail, it's beautiful to just to unwind with a book - not the Kindle that will end up lurking towards the lower depths of the swimming pool deep end. 

I am not at all saying Kindles aren't fantastic for convenience, for instant access to thousands of novels. If you had the option to download a book within seconds or trek into town in the pouring rain for the latest release, you know what option you are probably going to choose. They also are so simple and sleek that you can pop them in your bag, quickly race to that seat on the Tube and pull out your Kindle. 

I just don't want to see the same thing happen to our book shops, as recent failing retail businesses such as HMV and Blockbuster. 

The most important thing to realise is that we live in the technology age. It is not going to change, in reality technology is going to grow, expand and revolutionise our world. So the best thing we can do is accept the changes and use it to our advantage. What I am trying to say is, though I may not feel the same connection to Kindles, you have to utilize them in terms of efficiency and ease. You can create a special connection with books and really get lost in the story at your fingertips. If that effect can be created with Kindles, then combined, they definitely have the ability to be something wonderful. Until then - I'm going to sit on the Tube with my paperback novel and feel smug that I am having a much more wonderful reading experience than the businessman sat next to me.

Inspiring quote of the day, couldn't agree more! -> 

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