Jun. 24, 2012

Books vs. Tablets

There are different ways to read a book. Some people read the last page first before even beginning (like yours truly), while others read it from beginning to end without peeking. There are even some people that skip around, reading the chapters willy-nilly. But we still read them. Loving the feel of the pages, and the slightly musty smell they get when they sit on the shelf for a while.


But now, with technology, we have these tablets that pretend to be a book, but really aren’t. There’s a different feel to it, and it doesn’t smell like anything but cheep plastic. How did we get this far? How did we go from books making memories, to books for convenience only?


There’s just something about the smell of a book that brings back the memory of the first time you read it. You close your eyes, breathe it in, and remember your feelings. You remember where you were and what you were doing. Smell is one of the most power sense memories, add feel to it, and you have memories galore.


But with these tablets, they’re taking that away. All you remember is your eyes hurting after you read the book. I mean, you can’t very well sit there for hours and hours looking at a screen that makes you nauseous after five minutes. And you can’t read the last page, unless you go into a menu, click on the last chapter and manually flick the button until you get there. That’s hard. And as a reader, I think it’s easier to flip open the back cover of a book, and ta-da; you’re there.


Besides, you don’t get the same satisfaction that you get when you’ve seen how far you’ve read in a regular book. Instead, you read that you’re 48% finished, and you’re supposed to feel accomplished and comforted by that knowledge. With a real book, you see that you’ve knocked out a hundred pages and only have a hundred and fifteen left. And you really do feel like you’ve accomplished something.  


Then there are the physical things you have to worry about with these tablets. I’m just waiting for people to look up from their fake books one day, and say that they can’t see anymore. That the light (or lack there-of) given off from the tablet, destroyed their 20/20 vision. You don’t really have to worry about that with books, and you definitely don’t have to worry about being so nauseous that you have to close your eyes in order to get your bearings. To me, it’s just not right.


But then again, I’ve always been a purest.


What do you think?


Tell me.



The Fiction Writer