As i see it (when I’m trying to be objective) kindles have many advantages over books:

  • They don’t go brown with age
  • They don’t go wrinkly if you drop them in the bath
  • They are portable
  • Their weight remains the same irrespective of whether you are reading War and Peace or not
  • They don’t take up shelf space
  • They allow you to read rude books on trains without embarrassment
  • They looks nice

Somehow these advantages haven’t won me over. So, in the toilet of course, yesterday I asked myself: why do I still prefer wood-and-paper books? I came up with a number of reasons.

  • They have covers which are nice to look at
  • They feel nice in your hands
  • They can be used for interior decoration (I simply love bookshelves bursting with books)
  • They are solid
  • They have history (I love the smell and feel of second-hand books)
  • If I used a kindle I would find no pleasure in looking in second-hand bookshops
  • You can read them in the bath
  • If you drop a book in the bath, what have you lost? A few pounds at the most
  • Everyone on the train can see what you are reading and therefor they will realise how amazing and intellectual you are
  • I get more pleasure from buying a book than I would from ‘downloading’ a book
  • They smell nice (I like the smell of paper and wood)
  • They sound nice

It is this last advantage that I probably need to explain . I like the sound that books make when you open and close them (this mostly applies to new books). What I am referring to is that creeeek noise that the paper makes upon opening a new book. I love that noise. I also like the hollow clunk sound hardbacks make when you hit them. Oooh I do love that sound. Kindles don’t have that quality. I imagine that they’d sound metallic (if you were to thump one). So to me on the sound stakes alone the kindle cannot compete with the wood-and-paper book.  Please may books never die.

Wood-and-paper books

Wood-and-paper books – just a taste of my book shelves

My preferences for books are very personal and I appreciate that. I’m not a Luddite about the books vs kindle debate. I know that kindles are here to stay. I don’t resist them. I just choose to walk to my bookshelf and pick a nice yellow paperback to open and shut just to listen to the lovely creeky noise. Oohhhh.

You can't do this with a kindle

You can’t do this with a kindle


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