Something I realised as I started doing all of my reading digitally is that I do really love ebooks. I mean I have always read them – I’ve been enjoying Kindle (and their 99p sales) for years – but you come to different realisations when you have no choice but to read ebooks.
(By this I mean, ebooks for new books. When we were in full lockdown for months and months I had plenty of access to paperbacks via by bookshelves at home, but where was I going to get my hands on new books, or books I hadn’t read before but wanted immediately?)
Here’s a few reasons ebooks are excellent:
- Sometimes they are free.
I mean, the library’s digital lending app for ebooks has changed my whole life, probably. It does mean I spend way longer looking at my phone than I should but really, wasn’t I doing that anyway?
- You can read the sequel immediately.
I first realised the power of this when I was on holiday many years ago and bought the sequel to an excellent book on my Kindle and was able to read it right there and then without a wait. What an easy life!
- A seriously massive lending library.
Aside from everything you can access via purchased ebooks, there are also digital libraries and then, of course, there is archive.org. Mostly that website is known as the wayback site, but you can also borrow books from there from an absolutely endless catalogue. This has been very helpful to me in my Reading Women Challenge, where the books I’ve been reading date back to 1996.
- No more dictionary hunting.
I’ll admit – I’m lazy. If I’m reading a physical book and I don’t know a word, either my phone is in my hand or it isn’t, which means I will either find out the definition of this tricky word or I won’t. With ebooks that’s not even a problem – highlight it and the explanation is right there. I’m pretty sure my vocabulary has improved upon, y’know, actually finding out what words mean, and I think it’s a pretty nice bonus of ebooks!
Libraries are mostly still closed, which is understandable, even if I think their impact on local communities is massive, and thus their services are missed. I mean, I’m only talking about reading right now, but libraries are used for everything – internet access, study spaces, a safe and quiet indoor area. They mean A Lot! I might just talking about books here, but support your local library!
I’m absolutely keen to read paperbacks again (I just did a mini paperback haul for no reason other than I felt the urge to buy books), but this period of ebook-only reading has definitely made me more inclined towards them. They are just so very accessible, but also transportable. It means I’m actually reading the same book while out as I am at home, because it’s all on my phone! It has certainly changed my reading habits and I honestly see myself buying far physical books in the future.
Did your reading change with library lockdowns? What are your thoughts on ebooks? Let me know!