Books have been a favorite pastime for thousands of years. Historians have found evidence of people figuring out ways to write the stories in their minds long before paper was invented; whether it was through the use of stone tablets or fabric scrolls or even on walls. It is without a doubt that this is one form of entertainment that has withstood the test of time.
But as technology continues to make great advances, people fear that the use of hardcover or paperback books will become obsolete. Today, I will tell you MY reasons why I love hard copies of books vs the reasons why I love my kindle.
Let’s start off with what seems to be the most popular form of reading as of late: the Kindle (or any e-reader for that matter).
1) Storage on Kindle
The Kindle allows you to store thousands of books in a small, lightweight device. There is no need to worry about running out of space on your bookshelf or having to start stacking up books on the floor.
1A) Storage with Hardcovers/Paperbacks
It’s true that when you own a Kindle you are able to save space, but there will NEVER be anything as impressive as an actual library. I own a Kindle Paperwhite, a Kindle Fire, and an iPad containing about 1,000 books in total and as much as I may love all of those devices, none of them can compare to the joy that fills my little bookworm heart when I am able to add another book to my bookshelf; to be able to see my physical book collection grow.
2) Accessibility on Kindle
So let’s say you forget your Kindle e-reader at home, there’s no need to fret because Amazon has created apps on just about every kind of device. You can access your Kindle library on your phone, on your computer, and even on your tablet. This is all thanks to your Cloud storage that allows you to sync your ebooks anywhere.
2B) Accessibility with a Hardcover/Paperback
Hard copies of books may not be able to provide you with a fancy store within their pages, but you can find books just about anywhere. You can find them in libraries, in bookstores, in thrift stores, and even at pharmacies. Yes, you may have to leave the comfort of your own home to go out and buy a new one if you don’t have any at home, but this is ‘Murica! You can go in your pajamas and no one would bat an eyelash at you.
3) Weight on Kindle
Now, if you are a student like me, you may find yourself with the dilemma of wanting to read but also not wanting to lug around heavy books. I mean, let’s be logical here. You already have to carry textbooks, notebooks, and other school supplies so you don’t want to add anymore unnecessary weight. So what do you do when you’re a bookworm and can’t stand the thought of being without a handy book? This is where a kindle e-reader comes in to save the day. It typically weighs about 7.5 ounces (depending on the model) or you could forego that option entirely and just read on your phone or other device.
3C) Weight on Hardcover/Paperback
Hardcovers tend to be on the heavy side due to their construction and can weigh as much as a pound, but paperbacks typically weigh much less at around 15 ounces. To give you a better indication of how much that is, the iPad Air weighs 1 pound and a Kindle Fire comes in at about 15 ounces. Books do weigh a bit heavier than the Paperwhite, but if you read on an iPad or Kindle Fire than you won’t see much difference in the amount of weight you are carrying.
Amazon has a Kindle Store that it is at the top of its line. You can find just about every bestseller on there, you can find new releases, classics, and everything in between. It is easy to be able to buy a book on your device and begin reading it within seconds after purchasing.
4D) Storefront for Hardcovers/Paperbacks
As I mentioned earlier, you can purchase books at numerous outlets. Amazon may have a much wider selection of books than your local bookstore, but there is one thing that even a Kindle cannot do and that is be autographed. I know some of you skeptics must be thinking that the author can sign the back of your kindle and while that is true, your kindle is tiny and can only hold so many autographs before it runs out of space. Plus you’d be smudging the autographs or covering them up with cases and they might end up making the signatures fade so I don’t recommend doing that. Authors have a tendency to go into random bookstores all over the country and autograph several copies of their books which is the equivalent of finding a treasure for any bookworm. You won’t be finding any Kindles at the store coming with an autograph. If you go to a book signing, you can have your books signed, you can win books, bookmarks, and a whole bunch of other cool book swag.
5) Longevity for Kindle
Kindles do not have an extraordinarily long life. I’m not talking about the battery here. I’m referring to their actual lifespan before you have to replace it. I have scoured through numerous reviews and generally find that the average lifetime is about a year or two. There are a few lucky people out there who manage to keep their Kindle kicking for upwards of 3 or 4 years, but that is definitely not the average. Not to mention that dropping it can cause severe damage to your device. Either way you want to look at it, devices of any kind are not designed to last decades.
5E) Longevity for Hardcovers/Paperbacks
As long as you take care of your books, then they can very well outlive even you!! I have a first edition hardcover book that was written in the late 1800s and it is in remarkably good condition! You don’t have to worry about your battery dying, breaking it, or having to wait for it to charge up, because your paperback will always be there waiting patiently for the next person to devour the words contained within.
6) Lighting on Kindle
Most e-readers come designed with an LED light so that you may be able to read anywhere and at any time. E-readers have anti-glare screens that allow you to read with ease outdoors or in brightly lit rooms. They also allow you to read late at night without disturbing your partner by turning on lights.
6F) Lighting on Hardcovers/Paperbacks
Books come in their most basic form. There is no way to adjust the lighting on your book because it doesn’t have one! But there are several reading lights that you can attach to the top or bottom of your book to read late at night without disturbing your partner. In the case of lighting, the Kindle wins. However, anti-glare screens on e-readers are not 100% anti-glare. As much as they may try to deny it, there still is some amount of glare there. Hardcovers or paperbacks have no glare whatsoever! Hard copies win in this aspect. Plus, it really depends what e-reader you have. If you own the Kindle touch that is not adorned with a light, well then you’ll both be in the same predicament late at night.
There are many reasons to love an e-reader and many reasons to love a paperback. It ultimately comes down to individual preferences. I love my Kindle. I use it every single day, but I adore each and every paperback or hard cover book that I own. Holding my Kindle in my hands fills me with comfort but it does not feel as good as holding an actual book. Going to the Kindle store online is not even remotely as exciting as feeling and holding the hard copies at Barnes & Noble while walking among the aisles of books.
I love my Kindle because I can take it anywhere. Plus, it’s not as painful when it falls on my face while lying down versus a hardcover book. They both have their charms and they both have their flaws. My personal belief is that hard copies of books will always exist no matter what the latest technology is. Hardcovers and paperbacks have a certain charm that no piece of replaceable technology can ever muster.