Why you should stop buying books

Blog, On reading

About a year ago, my six-year-old son jumped on my Kindle and it died, never to be resurrected.

I figured that with a bookshelf creaking under the weight of real books, I would survive the loss, but I couldn’t let it go and eventually bought myself the Kindle Paperwhite. My sanity was restored.

Being an editor, books are my business and though I love the smell and feel of a real book, I do love my Kindle. Please allow me to explain:

Not only is the Kindle really user-friendly (its designers have thought about everything from how to make it look just like printed words on a page to its nifty size), there are also these five amazing benefits of reading on Kindle.  

1. Everything is at the touch of a button

  • I can highlight passages and take notes without feeling guilty about defacing my books.
  • I can see ‘popular highlights’ to know which passages other people thought were important
  • I can bookmark my spot and ‘dog-ear’ pages I want to come back to. I need never worry about losing my bookmark or my place.
  • I can easily search the whole book for a word, phrase or even character name (this last one is particularly helpful when I can’t remember when a character was first introduced – think epic historical novel!).
  • And my absolute best: I can look up the definition of a word with a simple tap. No more reaching for that heavy dictionary.

    2. A library on the go

These days when I go on holiday, I never have to worry about adding any weight to my luggage; the Kindle’s handy size makes it perfect for tucking into my handbag on the way out the door. And best of all, I don’t even have to first pick my holiday read – I have a library at my fingertips. 

3. Free classics

And on that note, there are so many books to choose from. There are literally thousands of popular classics that are free to download. The Great Gatsby? Jane Eyre? Mine for free at the touch of a button.

4. Read your own documents

This is an important one for me. The Kindle allows me to read my own files on my device. This is so helpful to me as an editor when I’m reviewing a manuscript. Reading it on Kindle and experiencing the text the way a real reader would, helps me catch errors and get a real feel for the quality of the text.

5. Perfect for night owls

And at the end of the day, when I climb into bed with some pleasure reading, I can rest assured that the side-lit screen and e-ink interface won’t affect the quality of my sleep. Best of all, when my husband turns out the light and I want to finish a chapter, I can … and the next one and the one after that … 

I promise you this is not a plug for Amazon and I do still love the books on my shelf. But it’s time to embrace the future people – go on … buy one already!

Written by Melissa Fagan, freelance non-fiction editor

I help non-fiction publishers deliver award-winning content. I am an internationally qualified non-fiction editor with 11 years’ publishing experience, specialising in education, lifestyle and literacy.

Email me: melissa.fagan@mfedit.com

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