e-book vs paper – round three

When e-books first came out, I figured that if I dropped a paper book on the floor, it would work.  If I got it wet, it wouldn’t be pretty, but it would still work.  If I left it on a table in a shop, it won’t likely get stolen.  These scenarios are not as likely for an e-book.  As to the reasons they put on the commercials, where the woman is weakly stating her love of turning a piece of paper or, gasp, dog earring it, those points are moot.  I’m assuming that turning an ‘e-page’ isn’t an issue for even the most technically unaware person out there (raises hand).

I’m told an e-book can hold over 300 books, of course my mind instantly thinks, since when do I need 300 books with me at one time?  At most, I’ve taken three on a trip, and those were tour books ripped into sections.  I travel light.  As far as going somewhere on holiday to read, that idea blows my mind.  Go to Hawaii to read a book?  Are you kidding me?!  I’m there to watch the sunset, people, learning to hula, snorkeling, hiking, surfing . . . maybe write.  Reading I can do at home.  I don’t commute long distances via train or plane, leaving me with yet another reason not to need an e-book.

Lately another thought has crept into my mind.  There are a lot of books I’m interested in reading, but won’t find most of them worth owning a paper copy of.  That’s not sacrilege, honest.  I love books, and have shelves full of them, but there’s a limit.  After moving several times, only the ones that fall into the category of, “Books I Love Enough to Schlep Around” are kept.  All others end up as donations to the library, or em, in a stack by the side of the bed awaiting their fate.

The big change now is I’ve been looking at my book wish list and thinking, if I had an e-book, I could download them all for a fraction of the price of the paper versions.  Especially now that they’ve lowered the price on one e-book to $80. For $80 to $140 I could buy what, ten books at fifteen dollars a pop.  Even if I buy used books, the cost of shipping alone is often more than the price to download a book.  At least, a lot of the books I want to look into aren’t super pricey to download.  If I read a library book and want to own a copy, I buy it.  I can do the same with electronic versions.  Now I’m thinking I’d like an e-book.  The math and my curiosity to read some new fictional pieces wins out.  Guess what’s going onto the top of my wish list?

If you have any advice or favorite aspects of a particular e-book, feel free to share.


6 thoughts on “e-book vs paper – round three

  1. Mike

    I’ve recently bought my first e-book and I have say it works quite well. I bought the non-fiction book on my iPhone and it allows me to make notes, add bookmarks, look up links etc super quick and easy. I don’t know about the kindle experience, not entirely convinced by it, but Apple’s persuading me on this book format argument.


  2. Linda Cassidy Lewis

    I think you’re using e-book when you mean e-reader. But you don’t have to have an e-reader to read e-books. I know you’re a Mac person, and I don’t know if Apple makes a computer version to read their iBooks, but Kindle and Nook have computer apps to read e-books downloaded from Amazon or B&N. And yes, you can have apps on your iPhone, or other smartphone, to read e-books. Before I got my Kindle, I bought an e-book and read it on my iPhone. It really wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. (I turned it sideways.)

    And our library system also loans e-books now, so don’t forget that option! 🙂

  3. serenitywriter Post author

    (big cheesy grin while blushing) ooops. Really? I got even that wrong? Sometimes I wonder if I’m meant to be in a technological age. Sigh. Thank you thank you for all the information, where would I be without savvy folks like you? : ) Jess

  4. Terri Porrino

    I’m an avid reader and I’m usually reading 2 or 3 books at any given time, along with various magazines. I always have something to read wherever I go, so if I am waiting in line somewhere, or at the doctor’s office, I can read a few pages and not feel like I’m wasting time waiting. I hate waiting. I also love to read at the beach and in the pool. I like to drag my chair right into the edge of the water and read while the waves slosh over my feet and under my butt. I might be a little surprised by water splashing on my paperbacks but might be a little more flustered by dropping a Kindle into the pool. Also, I worry enough about my cell phone going missing during those times I leave it behind at the blanket and go swimming – I would probably feel the need to go lock the electronic reader in the car first. I haven’t made that jump to electronic readers. Logically, I understand the benefits, but I like the warm fuzzy feeling of curling up with a book. Electronic devices just feel too cold, too much like….homework. I keep lots of my books, depending on the author or subject, but I also pass many more along to other people or the paperback exchange. Books are gifts that keep on giving.

  5. serenitywriter Post author

    Well, reading several books at any given time is actually a selling point for an e-reader. No matter where you are, you have all the current titles with you. At the beach or pool, whether getting it wet, sandy or leaving it and feeling safe to leave it there does create an issue though. I wouldn’t take one to the beach, pool or tub. But everywhere else, I just might.
    There are some worries about the loaning of ebooks, after the initial purchase, where the writer receives no further compensation. It’s an interesting area of thought that Linda Cassidy Lewis writes about here;
    http://lindacassidylewis.com/2011/11/01/should-authors-have-concerns-about-e-book-lending/ something for any writer to look into.
    As to the warm fuzzy feeling, I haven’t tried an ereader yet so I can’t say wether or not that takes away from the experience for me. Some books are bloody heavy or outsized or tightly bound and take a lot of pressure to hold open, whereas with an ereader that shouldn’t be an issue. All things I’m considering Terri. Thanks for jumping in with thoughts. Cheers, Jess


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