Digital Books – I Hereby Dip My Toe
I try to keep abreast of the newfangled digi-whatsits as they come out. I’m an old school guy, who loves his books and paper, but I also want to see if I can love digital.
Turns out, maybe I can.
I always swore books were better as something you could hold. Something tangible. It was the sort of stance I took as it felt like the right stance to take — it adhered with the sort of rhetoric I had stood staunch with for years. It was a stance I blindly supported without looking at facts, my heart won the race before it even started.
However, then I got my greedy little hands on an iPad. Then everything changed.
I started getting a few comics digitally — the free ones and the ones from sales. I have to admit, I really like a comic on the iPad. Hell, I kind of love it. No need to store it anywhere, no crinkling, no aging. I can’t resell the book or lend it but I so rarely do either that it doesn’t really matter.
Reading a comic digitally is kind of easy. Reading a novel…now, that feels like something different. I like novels in my hand, I like novels on my shelves. As of about 5 years ago, I had never gotten rid of any novel I had ever owned. My shelves were bursting, it was ridiculous. Then I got brutal, assessed what I truly NEEDED, and suddenly found the strength to get rid of some of the dead weight. Books I had read once and knew I would never read or need again. Books I knew I was never going to read. Books I hated. They all went out the door and I felt better for it.
I’m finally in a space where I don’t need packed shelves full of every sentence I ever glanced at. There are certain books I will want to buy but others I am sure I can experiment with.
Today, the experimentation begins. I bought my first digital novel today and I’m equally excited and scared about the prospect. I decided to dip my toe with one of my favourite authors of all time, Stephen King. His latest novel, 11.22.63 dropped today and I picked it up through iTunes for $9.99. A pretty sweet price for first day release and downloading it this morning before work felt awesome. I never get books so soon upon release and that price certainly was appealing.
The book has been on the iPad for about 12 hours now and I’ve read about 40 pages, of the apparent 1700 pages it takes up in the iBooks app. The pages are small, though it’s an ~800 page novel in the real world.
I chose this book because I love King, I’m actually keen for this book, and I wanted something I would actually want to read so I knew I’d give the experiment a fair chance.
So far, only hours and pages in, I’m enjoying the experience. It’s easy to read, the page turns are fine, and the book itself is pretty well written. It’s very standard King fare so far — local voices, dense history of photos on walls and shorthand between lovers, etc — and so I’m loving it.
I’ll let you know how I go as the book progresses but for now, know I’m entering a new age. This is a big step for me and I’m happy for it to go either way. For now, I just want to sink my teeth into the latest King and enjoy the feeling.
What about you? Are you reading any digital novels? Yes, or no, let me know why.
Posted on November 8th, 2011 by ryan
Filed under: books