Musing Monday 10.03 2014

Musing MondayMusing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week…
• Describe one of your reading habits.
Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it! 
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.
• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
• Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!

About four or five years ago I was on Amazon, looking for books to order, when I noticed that the books were usually cheaper as Kindle editions than they were as paperbacks. “What is a Kindle edition?” I asked myself, and two hours of research later, I knew that I needed a Kindle. My life was probably on the line, as I suspected that I would die if I did not get one. 

I’m sure some of you are wondering what kind of rock I was living under, seeing as my first meet and greet with a Kindle happened less than five years ago, but at the time e-books were pretty much an unknown word in Norway. I have come to believe that the publishers did not like this phenomenon, and they put up a fight against it. They lost of course, and unfortunately for them by the time they and the public libraries accepted that e-books were here to stay and they better get onboard, the ship had already sailed. To this day, borrowing e-books from the libraries here is a complicated affair that even I ( an upcoming librarian who spend more time on a computer than away from it) can barely figure it out, and people have found other, less legal ways to get the e-books they want.

When I got my Kindle, I was the first one in my circle to get one, and the only people I knew who had even heard of them were my colleagues at the public library where I worked as an assistant, and even they had never actually seen a Kindle or e-reader. Personally I prefer to read in English because the books I read are usually published in English (there are to my knowledge no writers of Paranormal Romance in Norway, and only a few writers of Fantasy), so not getting Norwegian books for my Kindle did not bother me at all. One of the best things about a Kindle is that people can’t immediately tell what you are reading. The downside was that when I got mine, people were so curious they kept asking what I was holding and how it worked, I had to demonstrate and let them poke around, so I rarely got to read more than a few pages in public before I got interrupted.

Still, though I am very happy with my Kindle. Four/five years after I got it, it still works and I have had very few problems with it. Since I can’t find the books I read domestically in bookstores or libraries, I can’t express how invaluable a Kindle is. I used to spend the same amount for having the books shipped to me as I did for the books, and it would take at least two weeks, sometimes a month for them to get to me. I love having books at my fingertips, ready to be sent to my Kindle and read whenever I want them. Sure, I like the feel of reading an old-fashioned book from time to time, the weight of it, the smell, the feeling of the paper and the sound as I flip a page, but I get that whenever I’m reading a book in Norwegian. And it means that whenever I am reading a paper-book, I appreciate those things even more.

What do you think of e-books? Love them? Hate them? Do you think the book industry is able to keep up with the technology, or did they hold out too long, like they did here?

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One Response to Musing Monday 10.03 2014

  1. C. C. Gevry says:

    I do think people felt that eBooks were a fad that might go away like parachute pants or legwarmers, but I’m glad they are here to stay. While I will always prefer printed books over digital, my Kindles have made it easier for me to review books and still keep the clutter in my home down.

    Hope you’ll stop by today at http://thebookconnectionccm.blogspot.com/2014/03/musing-mondays-march-10.html

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