Even though I am fairly technology-challenged, I still have not warmed to the idea of an electronic tablet replacing my treasured books. I am sure they have many benefits (lighter carry on luggage is the first thing I thought of), but I still feel strongly about the power of the page.
Physically turning pages, caressing covers, perusing book jackets and flipping back and forth between scenes is a confection of senses that simply does not occur with an electronic book. The act of holding a book that is either slim or thick, dog-eared or crisp, hardcover or softcover, is one of the many reasons reading is enjoyed by so many. I cherish each Fall, hoping Stephen King will produce one of his 900 page doorstoppers, so I can feel the weight of his brilliance as I stay up late into the night scared out of my wits.
Our home is a cornucopia of reading material that is a window into the myriad of personalities that make up our family. We read, we question, we share. Our children are in tune with what we are reading, how often we read, and our feelings and reactions. Investment and health books clutter my husbands side of the bed, while mine consists of historical fiction, suspense and the occasional chick lit. My two teenage boys share a love for historical biographies as well as sports and lately, The Hunger Games. Everyone knows what everyone else is reading as well as whether we are enjoying it or not. Hunkered down with an electronic tablet just does not foster the same family interactions.
We all remember libraries and I am sure with much fondness. Getting lost in a library looking for a book is one of life's simplest pleasures. The silent hush of a library adds to the reverence and importance of reading that seems to be lacking today. Why must we always have something the minute it is released? The anticipation of waiting for a book to arrive can be fun too. Don't forget reference, periodicals and magazines. No, they are not as fast as the internet, but the process can be much more stimulating.
I just can not visualize a virtual book club, nor can I picture the sweet process of passing on a good book to someone who you know would really enjoy it. In our family, my mother buys a book and passes it on to her three daughters, each signing their initial on the inside cover once she has read it. There are also so many opportunities to share a book with others who may not be so fortunate as to be able to purchase one. Donate a book to your local library, thrift store or any "take a book, share a book" at your local gym, etc.
Even thought just the other day I was using a Chinese fortune as a bookmark, I have a drawerful of priceless handmade bookmarks from my children, along side some beautiful ornamental ones. I like to match the bookmark personality to that of the book, and sliding in a bookmark has a comfort all its own.
select one here...