Home > Blog, Opinion > Do you read real books?

Do you read real books?


The arousing smell of  a new book, what I like to call the ‘newness scent’, is one not to be forgotten or taken lightly. The spine is in perfect condition and none of the pages are creased or crumpled. After a week of being carried around, transported to numerous destinations and read cover to cover the small wrinkles begin to christen your new novel. Perhaps like me, you make sure each book is kept in pristine condition and cherish each one; caring for its individual nature.

However this summer has seen the rapid decrease in book sales in the UK. It was reported at the beginning of July 2011 that WH Smith book sales were down by 4%. With the competition of online retailers and e-books, do paperbacks and hardbacks stand a chance?

The internet has made reading accessible, easy and above all, free. The Kindle has assisted the reading revolution and as reported in January 2011; the Kindle books now outsell paperbacks on Amazon. Kindles have their benefits: less weight to carry in your bag compared to a paperback, battery life of two months, enhanced PDF reader, built in dictionary, bookmarks, wireless access to Wikipedia and built in Wi-Fi. At a cost of around one hundred and fifty pounds from Amazon this electronic handheld can be a worthwhile investment.

However a Kindle cannot retain the memories of those found in paperbacks. It does not bear the smell of a book that has lived in different houses nor do the corners show where people have been gripping the book with sheer strength hoping that Peter will find his true love once again. A Kindle however remains cold and sleek and without emotion.

A book is not just a book; it requires a setting. Libraries, open fields and public transport are the main locations for reading. Libraries offer the perfect setting: you have unlimited access to a wide variety of books whilst being in a secure and tranquil setting. On the other hand, taking a stroll in the rural countryside with a flask of tea and biscuits adds a beautiful scenic backdrop to Jane Eyre. And there is nothing better than avoiding the smelly BO man at the back of the bus for the front seat with your paperback.

Remember the phrase: never judge a book by its cover. Well, I think that is one of the benefits of a paperback. You can spend endless hours wandering around your local bookshop examining all of the exciting and artistic front covers. However the Kindle shows you online covers with reviews and ratings, nowhere near as sensual.

Will it be a happy ever after for paperbacks or will the evil Kindle rule the land of novels? Let’s hope not.


  1. September 7, 2011 at 9:22 AM

    In my eyes nothing will replace the feeling of a new friendship unfolding when I open a new book…great post..ELiza Keating

    • September 7, 2011 at 1:49 PM

      I found your blog very inspirational, and as a writer too, I would love the feeling of unfolding a book of my own once it has been published! Thank you for reading my post. Rebecca

  1. September 7, 2011 at 9:37 AM

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