The Reading Life

The not-so-secret reason I became an e-reader

The way I put it in the title makes it sounds as if I literally became an e-reader. Like I’m in a Franz Kafka story, but instead of waking up as a cockroach, I woke up one morning as a Nook GlowLight Plus.

Maybe that would make a good 21st century reboot, now I think about it. But no. I haven’t turned into an electronic device. (I’ll bet you figured that part out, though.)

I did, however, became an ardent user of said device. I fell in love with my Nook GlowLight (now in its waterproof “Plus” edition). I … did not expect that when I first acquired the device in 2013.

via GIPHY

I’ve touched on some of these before:

My Nook’s navigation feels streamlined and intuitive.

Plus, it’s pretty. I especially appreciate the casing. It makes it feel less device-y because the cream color melts into the edges of the page.

Plus, I love carrying a whole library with me everywhere I go.

The not-so-secret reason I became an e-readerIn the end, though, reading on my Nook comes down to something I’ve realized over the last few weeks: Practically, I do most of my reading at bedtime. It’s when my mind is most free/least distracted. I can snuggle in, turn off the lights, and disappear into another world. My Nook is great for that because of the back light that is not a blue light.

I miss reading paper books so very much sometimes. So much so, in fact, that I’ve gravitated toward paper books in recent weeks.

via GIPHY

The end result has been … discouraging: I’m reading far less than usual. Turns out, unsurprisingly, that convenience is hard to beat. Since I’ve grown accustomed to reading on my Nook, I’m finding it hard to return to reading paper books, which require just-so lighting and a readable font size.

I’d love to hear what others have experienced. Have you become an e-reader, or are you paper books or bust?

4 thoughts on “The not-so-secret reason I became an e-reader

  1. Whoa – this post is super in-tune with my life this past week. First, my mother-in-law came for a quick stay en route for the airport, and it turned out she’d forgotten the novel she’d planned to read during her 26-hour trip to New Caledonia. I was horrified at the thought of anyone traveling book-less, especially for so long. My husband lent her his Kindle and I quickly uploaded several free classics onto it for her (luckily, those are her favorite kinds of books to read, anyway). Then, today, my OWN Kindle helped me pass time in a very unexpectedly long line. I was in one of those moods where I wanted to sort of rifle through books, not necessarily commit to anything…so a Kindle was the perfect thing to have with me.

    I definitely agree with you about the advantage of having an entire library right there on one lightweight device. But I do still prefer physical books, as it seems many people do. Nothing beats the smell of a book, the flutter of pages, the satisfying (or sad) feeling of being able to easily see how much you’ve read already, and so on. Still, e-readers are amazing for travel, or just going about your daily errands. So I have to say, I love both. Not to mention, I’m deep in a research project where I’m reading a lot of primary source material. I love that public domain document sites or the French library’s site, Gallica, offer free PDF’s of scanned historical books/documents that might otherwise be super hard to find. I can carry them around on my Kindle, all in one place, and easily highlight important things. I love it.

    I’m glad you also love both formats, and thanks for the delightfully whimsical opening of this post and the Mr. Banks gif.

    1. Thank you, Alysa. 🙂 I feel for your mother-in-law. How lucky you and your husband were able to lend her a loaded Kindle!

      I love both too. Practically, I’m trying to accept that I read more when I read electronically. And definitely, with historical books and documents, the Nook app is great. But I will never give up my paper books!

  2. I’ve felt the same way. I don’t have a good book light so it’s pretty difficult to use the flashlight on my phone to be able to read paper books at night. It’s also much lighter to bring my e-reader with me on the bus and a lot less hassle when people are moving around.

    I do think overall that I prefer paper books though. With research for school or the book club I’m currently in, I find it much easier to take in what I’m reading and refer back to it if I can actually hold it. My Kobo does have the option of bookmarking pages but it’s not easy to flip through these. Unless there’s an easier way I haven’t found yet, I have to go to the bookmark page, select one, and then return to the home page and open the book again. It just makes the process long and tedious, and with PDF formats I’m also unable to highlight. When it’s something I’m using for an essay, I find it much easier to read a paper copy and use sticky notes.

    PS I know you wrote this a while ago but I hadn’t had the time to visit your blog! I’d saved this one in my inbox cuz it looked like another interesting discussion!

    1. Thanks so much for visiting, Sam! That does sound cumbersome with the Kobo. My Nook is super user-friendly, so I can flip around using bookmarks. Sometimes, I find it easier to look up sections using the search function. Even so, I agree with you that paper books are still my favorite. And when I’m writing about something, I do find something more reassuring about having the paper book to flip through. Ah, nothing will ever replace paper books!

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