Reading (Part 3)

How I Read

I love to hold a book. I love the weight of a book and the texture of the pages as I turn them. Depending on where and how it’s been stored, a book can have a unique smell.

A comfortable chair, a good reading light, a lovely cup of tea, and a good book is my idea of heaven. And of course, reading in bed. What luxury.

There was a time when I refused to imagine piling up in bed with an electronic device of any kind instead of a book. I’ve had a Kindle for two years and I love it. Kindle offers the best of both worlds. I can read, I can listen, and I can listen and read.

The wonders of modern technology have made many books available free (and, so does the public library, don’t forget). The Kindle or Kindle-like devices are more convenient.

Kindle eBooks don’t have all of the “bells and whistles” of the eBooks I enjoyed in the college library where I worked. Those eBooks are, in my opinion, the ultimate research tool. They offer full text searching across the text of the entire book. Most Kindle eBooks lack indexing. Pages can be bookmarked, text can be highlighted and saved. With the library’s eBooks, saved notes can be downloaded in a variety of formats.

Project Gutenberg was the first provider of free electronic books, or eBooks. I can often find out of print books that have been digitized and made available in a variety of electronic formats. Project Gutenberg offers over 45,000 free eBooks and access to more than 100,000 titles through its partners and affiliates.

Audiobooks books have been around for a long time; but, technology has made them more accessible. I first became interested in audiobooks when I commuted two hours each way once a week while working on a Ph.D. Audiobooks were a pleasant diversion from the demands of a graduate study reading list.

For nearly 10 years I lived 150 miles from everywhere, I had plenty of time in my car to listen to audiobooks. I listened to audiobooks when I walked my dog as I did five times a day for 30-45 minutes at a time. I listened to many books I would not have read otherwise.

Book, eBook, or audiobook, their purpose is to inform and to enrich our lives.

4 thoughts on “Reading (Part 3)

  1. Anke Hodenpijl

    I am still not a fan of audio books, but I think you may have inspired me to rethink my options. Thank-you for this post Dennis.


    1. Dennis VanderWerff Post author

      The narrator makes the difference. Some narrators have voices that contain casts of thousands. It’s a wonderful experience to hear them. Jim Dale narrated Harry Potter. I got hooked on the first one and listened to all seven. I understand the narration of Sue Monk Kidd’s Invention of Wings is excellent. It’s on my list.

    2. Annis Cassells

      Anke, we’ve heard many good books while traveling in the car. We usually download them from the public library collection onto an iPod or other MP3 player. Judy has said she’s listened to books that she probably would not have read herself. And, Dennis is right about the narrator making the difference. xoA

  2. Joan Raymond

    I like the feel of holding a book also. But, I do have a Kindle app with lots of classic titles and a subscription to Audible with several books on the virtual shelves. No matter if I am reading or being read to, each book takes me away to another time or place which is always a welcome escape.


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