I have an ereader.


And I have books.


And I see the benefits of both.


I love real books. I love holding them, feeling the weight in my hands. I love flicking through the pages and the feeling of physically popping in a book mark (or old receipt / train ticket / biscuit wrapper). I like reading the back in a book shop and sometimes getting it signed by the author. I like the smell. I like how the furnish a room. I love noseying at what people are reading on the train. You can be reading anything on an ereader but books are a statement about who you are.


But I must admit, I like my ereader too. It’s light. It’s easy to read. I like how you can adjust the size of the text to suit yourself. I like that it tells you what percentage of the book you are on. I like how it doesn’t take up much space in your bag. And how it doesn’t weigh down your bag either!


I know there’s a lot of debate about books vs. ereaders. E-reader people claim they are the future. That they are easier to use. That “why do you need all those books anyway? They take up so much space!”

Book people talk about the romanticism of the printed page. About how reading from a screen is cold. About the memories that the physical book can evoke.


I see both. As do many people. But, as the smart observer will have noticed, if I had to choose. I would choose books. I like my ereader. But I love my books. And today I think I realised why. With an ereader you can recommend a story.

But with a book you can share it.

You can lend them and borrow them and leave post-it notes in them.

You can’t give an ebook as far as I know, only a voucher.

But you can give a book. You can choose it based on their tastes or because they’ve hinted or it’s an author they like. I am always happy to receive a book. Even if it turns out not to be my cup of tea. It’s genuinely the thought that counts.


Books are social.

Ebooks aren’t.