Saturday, August 03, 2013

E-Books v Physical books by Rebecca from Rebecca-Books

I'm really happy today to have this  lovely guest post from one of my favourite bloggers, Rebecca from Rebecca-Books! I really love Rebecca-Books and all of the great reviews that I find there. If you aren't already following Rebecca, please do visit the following websites and let Rebecca and I know what you think in comments!
E-books v Physical books
by Rebecca from Rebecca-Books

For those that don’t know, I am a bookseller at Waterstones, one of the UK’s biggest book retailers. Therefore, it would be safe to assume that in a theoretical tennis match between The Physical Book and The E-Book, I would so be the cheerleader for The Physical Book.

However, I am also a book blogger where websites like Netgalley are alluring and where we, bloggers, operate and exist on the internet, digitally. Much like The E-Book. Which harks back to the long old-age question, which one is better? The book which you can feel, touch, smell or the book which doesn’t weigh a thing (and THAT is always helpful when packing reading material for holidays!)

I’d be the first to put my hand up and admit that I love using my Kindle. Certainly the idea of sitting in the sun by a quiet swimming pool with my Kindle reading an amazing book is a dream. My Kindle has opened up more and more books to me as well as contacts with publishers through sites like Netgalley and Edelweiss. It’s also saved me some money by getting some of the books I’m interesting in reading without breaking the bank. The e-book also helps to encourage reading in young children as another platform to indulge in books and reading - which I guess it more attractive to children in an advancing digital age. It’s hard to understand the appeal of Kindles to children, I think, because most of us in the discussion remember a childhood without this kind of technology. For me, the Internet was invented the year I was born and I don’t remember having my own computer until I was about 12 (for the record, that was SIX years ago).

Yet, there is something so, so special about the physical book. Being able to hold the book while experiencing the emotions, the thrill and ultimately that feeling of just wanting to know the ending - it all makes a difference between holding the paper book rather than an electronic device.  As many have said, there is certainly something so pleasant and meaningful about holding a much loved book in front of you as you devour it word by word. Is it the smell of the book, or just the fact you’re holding the story within your hands or something else? I’m not sure.

Furthermore, all the much loved places associated with books – the library, bookshops, schools – they all were established and depend on the written word being published in a paperback or hardback. Without those places, well, I think our towns and our high streets would be missing something vital.

I’m completely and utterly on the Team Physical Book side, and that is not because of I work in a bookshop - it’s something I’ve always thought. Kindles and e-books are great for reading on the go but I don’t think that for book lovers like me, or Clover, or perhaps you, an e-book would beat reading your favourite book in physical form.

Thank you, Rebecca! What do you think about the ebooks v physical books debate? 


  1. I do love my Kindle *pats Kindle* but I'm more likely to read a physical book and I just love the feel and smell of books. We're all friends here, right? Don't judge.
    Great post, Rebecca! I just love reading in general, no matter what form the book is in!

  2. Thank you so much, Rebecca. It's a difficult one. Like you, I love my Kindle and netgalley. ...And yet, I also couldn't ever give up actual books. They're just so much more physically present and therefore demanding of my attention.


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