Cyber Books Don’t Stick

For the past year, I’ve been reading most of my books on the Kindle or iPad. It’s just so handy to carry my library with me that way, and the books (while not cheap, as if digital printing costs a lot) are less expensive.

Plus, when we moved at the end of the year, I had to give away half of my carefully accrued library, which bruised my soul. So, I figured, fine, I’ll just get books online now.

(That photo shows one of three trips I made to give books to the local library.)

But I’ve discovered something interesting. I don’t retain the books I read online nearly as well as I do printed books, and I’m not talking possession. I’m talking in my brain. When I try to recall the ebooks I’ve read in the past year, I have a vague recollection of the story and plotline, but most of the particulars are hazy. On the other hand, when I try to recall books I’ve read on the page, they seem to stick with me. Fact.

I read somewhere that the human brain doesn’t retain as much when the print is digital versus ink. I’ll have to look for those articles again, because I think I’m living proof of that truth. eBooks are definitely more convenient, but I think I’ll reserve eBooks for those quick reads (the Lee Child books), and save actual printed books for those I want to savor and enjoy again and again (PD James, Meg Gardiner, Laurie R. King, C. S. Forester, etc.).

Of course, that means I’ll rebuild my library, but I must. It’s part of who I am. I’m a reader and a writer. I own books. I love books. I need books.

One thought on “Cyber Books Don’t Stick

  1. I agree. I like the convenience of being able to read a book through kindle on my iphone if I find myself caught without a book and alone at lunch or waiting in a line, and I like the ability to take a variety of books on a trip without using up my weight allowance in my luggage, but if I’m at home I’d always rather read a book. And I love being surrounded by shelves and stacks of books at my house “library.”

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