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Old 10-06-2012, 10:51 PM   #31
~Kate
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Originally Posted by DiapDealer View Post
The "book" is a lie ... the "words" are where all the value lies. Ebooks allow me to easily skip right past all the distracting lies.
This nails it.
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Old 10-06-2012, 11:03 PM   #32
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Why am I still saying this NOW? Precisely because there're so many converts now,
If you think there are a lot of converts now, I think you'll be in for a surprise: I believe the flood has only just started.

I had a co-worker who was dead set against e-books. He liked the feel of the paper in his hand, he said. His mother in law (who he is close to) owns a used book business. The idea was preposterous. His girlfriend echoed similar opinions.

But he now owns two Kobos. What changed? Well, his girlfriend has health problems and finds it difficult to hold a paperback up in front of her face; a hardcover is a near medical impossibility for her. Then she broke both her arms (the right wasn't too bad, but the left was really thrashed) and even holding a paperback was impossible. But we got an old school first-gen Kobo for her which has physical buttons that can be used with one hand, and suddenly she can read again. She can read easier than she ever could with a paperback, as the Kobo is lighter.

He's also converted. He hated going into book stores and finding only parts of series, which is a particular problem with used books. While there are exceptions, usually a series in e-book format is either not at all available or entirely available, and the back catalogues are gradually being mined deeper and deeper by publishing companies and e-book stores.

Many people say they prefer the feel of paper in their hand. I get that. But many people prefer the personal touch of putting pen to paper and writing a letter, but that didn't stop email from taking over. Looking a little further back, many people love the romance of horse and buggy, but that didn't stop the automobile from taking over. The e-book market will be the same thing, IMO.

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I'm wondering: why did you switch to ebooks? Have you forgotten the pleasure of books browsing, or is the e-book experience comparable to that of the old-school experience? Or has convenience displaced experience?
Your question betrays your bias: the possible answers to your question suggest only negatives in e-books, or the personalities of their adherents.

My story is probably different than most. I'd all but stopped reading (after having been an avid reader in my teens). Life got in the way. The convenience of e-books (light, portable, my entire book collection with me everywhere I go, etc.) has finally got me reading again. I have read almost every night for nearly a year, after having been able to count on one hand how many days I read for pleasure in a typical year for the last decade (maybe longer). E-books offered convenience I needed to jump start my reading again, as well as features I couldn't have dreamed of (search ability, hyperlinking, and other features that are just starting to really come into their own). I read a lot of alternate history, and I love being able to read that and also switch to a web browser and be inspired to research actual history (to compare, if it's an element of history I'm not very familiar with) and do it all on the same device!

I didn't choose e-books over paper books, I chose e-books over no books at all. Though the arguments about it being better for the environment do also resonate with me.

ETA: I should add that I love the fact that I can now get rid of all my paper books. I've been giving them away to literacy drives and that kind of thing. I have held on to a few beloved favourites, but I honestly don't know why. Each time a charity asks for more books I find myself able to let go of a few more that I wasn't able to the previous time. I do honestly believe I'll give away every paper book I own by the time I'm done.

Last edited by scrapking; 10-06-2012 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 10-07-2012, 01:03 AM   #33
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One of the most obvious answers, personally, is that I'm a hoarder. I have no desire to get rid of the books that I've already read, but I also have no desire to buy a bigger house to fit more books - and this leaves me at an obvious impasse where books are stashed in awkward places for lack of space.

I enjoy visiting independent and used bookstores on occasion, and I find myself writing down a long list of books that I want to pursue when I get back to my computer. Many of my favourite books are 'doorstoppers', too, and it's frustrating to go about a day's shopping with a bag of newly-purchased 1000-page-books hanging off my wrist for the next six hours. I also have a very small handbag, and carrying such a doorstopper when I'm reading it is just as frustrating.

There are thousands upon thousands of free, public domain e-books available, too - to such a degree that my Kindle has paid for itself at least four times over. Well-known titles such as Pride & Prejudice and Bleak House are no longer under copyright, and so are legally and freely distributed in various e-formats. It's a wonderful feeling to have thousands of the classics that I've always wanted to read right at my fingertips, without needing to pay anything for them at all.

Of course, libraries will always have a special lure. I've always relied on them heavily, and there isn't fantastic Overdrive support in my state at this stage, so I still do browse for or order in paper books on a fairly regular basis: I save my disposable income for the books that I especially love.

Have I forgotten the pleasure of browsing through a bookstore, though? Has owning a Kindle trumped owning paper books due to convenience? Well, yes and no to both of them. I never had a brilliant experience browsing the vast majority of bookstores due to not being attracted to the bestsellers (my tastes, apparently, are "weird" and "fringe"). I've always had a wonderful experience browsing libraries, and don't expect that to change. Owning a Kindle makes it highly convenient to be reading three books at once, but it's less convenient when wanting to purchase a book which hasn't been released in an e-format yet - after all, I just can't justify paper books any more, space-wise, except for non-fiction.
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Old 10-07-2012, 01:47 AM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uebyn View Post

One of my greatest pleasure is to stroll in the bookstore and discovering books - sometimes by their cover, other times by their spines. In any case, I pick up a book, briefly read its synopsis, and if it interests me, I will read the first page. If the first page intrigues me, and I have spare cash, I will buy it on the spot. Sometimes, if I feel like it, I will stop right at a cafe to read the book over a nice cup of coffee. One of the simple pleasures of life...

With ebooks, you don't get that.
The only aspects of the described procedure that you cannot functionally reproduce with ebooks are the physical and social experience of going to a nice place and spending some time there. Functionally you may treat, for instance, amazon like a very well stocked book store where you can look at covers, access synopses and read samples as you can in a store.
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Old 10-07-2012, 02:09 AM   #35
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I (mostly) stopped browsing in bookstores to discover books long before I got an e-reader. Despite occasional serendipitous discoveries, browsing was not really that efficient, and once I discovered Amazon and the online catalog of my local library, browsing as a way of finding books became much less common. By the time I was interested in an e-readers, buying books from the internet was already well established.

In general, discovering books on the internet is far superior to browsing; there are far more books at Amazon than at even the largest bookstore. And it is easy to find out more about the book if you are trying to decide...as opposed to how I've spent a huge amount of my browsing time, which is standing in the shelves, holding a book, and trying to decide if it's worth buying.
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Old 10-07-2012, 02:33 AM   #36
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I didn't "switch" to e-books. I added e-books in addition to paper books. I probably have at least 1,000 paper books in my house. I don't want that number to increase, but I have no intention to eliminate paper books from my house. When I get new paper books, some of the paper books have to go.

When I'm looking for a book to read, looking at books on a shelf is a different experience from looking at a list of books on a device. Plus, I just like having them there.

What hooked me on the e-book was public domain books. Books that were once obscure could be had in a minute. 1,100 pages of Don Quixote suddenly weighed nothing at all. No more old, yellowed pages to deal with.

There's no need to choose between paper books and e-books. You can have both. It's not a marriage. Your e-reader will not be jealous if you continue to read paper books. Your paper books will not go "Fatal Attraction" on you to keep you from e-books.
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Old 10-07-2012, 03:05 AM   #37
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I prefer to read books in the language in which they were written, when at all possible. For the genres I prefer, this means I read almost exclusively in English.

Bookshops here don't and never have had large sections for English books; translated books (in addition to being translated) can only ever represent a small selection of books published in those genres plus the costs are high, with an average new genre book costing between 18-25 €.

So browsing in bookshops, one of my favourite activities when I was a child, hasn't been something I've found particularly enjoyable or useful for the last twenty years.

Add to that living in a flat and having probably around 1500 paper books (I've never counted, so I'm not quite sure of the number, but I've bought many hundreds myself, adding to my mother's and to what my grandmother left behind), this pretty much meant I had more or less stopped buying - and reading - published books for several years before e-readers came along as there was no space (and the books I did buy, I had to buy online anyway, not after a bookshop browsing experience, which meant waiting for weeks to get the book + shipping costs in addition to the price of the book).

I've also never felt particularly comfortable with paperbacks - I find paperbacks hard to keep open and the small fonts as well as small line spacing make them irritating to read. Not impossible, but not pleasant. Hardbacks are better, but they also take up a lot more space and are more expensive.

So with all those factors, getting an ereader as soon as it became feasible - when I could (a) get my hands on one, and (b) when the first bookshops that would actually sell ebooks to me came along - was a no-brainer. I could finally read something else than fanfic again! The choice available to me is multitudes of times greater than browsing in a physical bookshop ever was or ever could be, I don't have to wait three weeks for an interesting-sounding book to get to me, and I don't need to worry about storage. And I can read it in physical comfort, not needing to worry about using effort to keep it open or the fonts being too small.

I still buy a handful of books in paper (preferably hardback if I can find it), if it's something I love so much that I really want to have it in my shelf to admire, too, and if it's something I'm pretty sure about wanting to re-read over and over again in the future. Or the rare times when it's something I think I really want to read but that isn't available as ebook (although the last time that happened, the paperbacks - the only edition available to buy - turned out to have such small print and narrow spacing and non-existing margins that I still haven't been able to even start them, as I know reading them will be a very uncomfortable experience).

I've never liked to read books in public, so reading something in a café isn't appealing - besides, I can't see any reason why one can't do that with an ebook.
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Old 10-07-2012, 04:32 AM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uebyn View Post
Why am I still saying this NOW? Precisely because there're so many converts now, I'm wondering: why did you switch to ebooks? Have you forgotten the pleasure of books browsing, or is the e-book experience comparable to that of the old-school experience? Or has convenience displaced experience?
I loved book-browsing; however, it rarely resulted in me getting books--I couldn't afford them. I also couldn't carry several days' reading around in my purse; at 2 hours for a 50,000-word novel, I can and do finish one new book on the bus to my doctor, and want something else to read on the way back.

I also read a lot of fanfiction, which doesn't have a printed form. (Fanfic exploded when it hit the internet; the zine days didn't have 250,000-word stories. Nobody could afford to print them.)

I never could afford new books to keep up with my reading; I relied a lot on friends' recs and borrowed books and yard sales. Now, I read a lot of freebies and self-published things with interesting-sounding blurbs.

I'm entirely willing to forgo the "pleasure of book-browsing" for the pleasure of endless things to read, especially since they come in a single lightweight package that changes fonts to match the light level or my eyes' tiredness.
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Old 10-07-2012, 05:17 AM   #39
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This is HERESY !
The holy ebook council shall be summoned and you shall be judged, found guilty and condemned to burn alive at the stake !

Quote:
Originally Posted by uebyn View Post
The title says it all. Despite the increasing popularity of ebooks, I refuse to buy one. Not because devices are expensive, not because I am biased against ebooks, but because of the way I discover books.
Well for me it was books meet technology and since I love both, I decided to try it and before you know it I enjoyed that cross of the two worlds. Now having said that, I still got loads of paper books in my shelves which I still read on occasion.

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Originally Posted by uebyn View Post
Why am I still saying this NOW? Precisely because there're so many converts now, I'm wondering: why did you switch to ebooks? Have you forgotten the pleasure of books browsing, or is the e-book experience comparable to that of the old-school experience? Or has convenience displaced experience?
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Old 10-07-2012, 06:31 AM   #40
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What I find interesting is that the OP has not come back to answer the main question everyone asked: "Why are you on Mobileread"?

I would like to know that from the OP themselves.
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Old 10-07-2012, 07:04 AM   #41
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If you read their other posts, you'll find uebyn's an aspiring online hyperlink novel writer who hasn't read any fiction in months and doesn't think contemporary fiction writers are any good.
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Old 10-07-2012, 07:24 AM   #42
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This is actually the kind of trollish question I find amusing enough to answer. That's why I gave an answer on this thread.

I'm about as far from the cliche of a woman who "loves going shopping" - and being able to click "buy" on something whether physical or digital, without having to leave the comfort of my own home, dayum, who wouldn't?

I've never been the cliche girly girl who has a collection of uncomfortable foot decorations bought out of peer pressure from a social group lol.... I'm just not a 'social buyer'
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:30 AM   #43
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Getting back to the OP, I've never discovered books through bookstores. I mostly discover them through reviews, and through getting interested in a subject and then investigating said subject.

Last weekend my wife Barbara and I visited the open-to-tourists Perkasie Pennsylvania home of the late Nobel-prize winning author Pearl Buck. Now I'm finishing a hardback Buck biography from the library, and Barbara is a finishing an eBook Buck novel, also from a public library.

The weekend before that we visited the Peace Mission Movement headquarters in Gladwyne Pennsylvania AKA home of Mother Divine and the late Father Divine. If I can be allowed some disgraceful name-dropping, we actually met, and exchanged a few friendly words, with Mother Divine, meaning that we talked to someone whose in-laws entered adulthood as American slaves. I know this because I then took out from the library God, Harlem U.S.A.: The Father Divine Story. This was the Peace Mission Movement history which, based on a web search, seems to have gotten the strongest reviews.

Most authors get more income from store sales than selling to libraries, so I have no problem with how the OP author finds books. My way is also OK.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:50 AM   #44
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In high school I hated reading but struggled through what I had to to get by (barely). I did college etc. and again enough to get by but with better grades. Now in my 70's it dawned on me that I read online by the hour, website after website, news, articles etc. I ordered a Kindle to see if it would make a difference in pleasure reading. I read my first book for pleasure in 50 years on the Kindle. Since I have read tons of books for pleasure.

In the past I've purchased real books that looked interesting but page one was about it, unless I really liked what I was reading and maybe page two. I cannot read on paper with any comfort level.

Maybe my geek blood is too thick when it moves through my eyes or something but I love reading for the first time in my life :-) due to ebooks. Though not officially diagnosed I suspect I have dyslexia which I also suspect relates to the issue.
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Old 10-07-2012, 08:58 AM   #45
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In high school I hated reading but struggled through what I had to to get by (barely). I did college etc. and again enough to get by but with better grades. Now in my 70's it dawned on me that I read online by the hour, website after website, news, articles etc. I ordered a Kindle to see if it would make a difference in pleasure reading. I read my first book for pleasure in 50 years on the Kindle. Since I have read tons of books for pleasure.
How very sad that you should have let so many years of your life go by without one of the greatest pleasures in life. Still, now at least you're "catching up" a bit.
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Best way to test an ebook if you don't have a reader? Stodder Workshop 5 05-18-2011 06:29 PM
What ebook readers don't do Elfwreck General Discussions 18 09-08-2010 12:47 PM
Help! I don't what ebook reader to buy Ham88 Which one should I buy? 8 05-15-2009 06:16 PM


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