I am starting to realise a key difference between real and virtual books. Every virtual book is essentially the same as every other one, in that it is in exactly the same packaging, the same cover, the same layout. Only the words differ. Every real book is unique. It has its own smell, its own feel, its own weight; eventually, even its own stains. Some have very special associations. This was given to me by my parents. This belonged to my grandfather. And when you visit somebody’s house, what does a Kindle tell you about their taste in books? Looking through somebody’s bookshelves is always a great pleasure.
Much as I like picking up the Kindle, and like the convenience, I am yearning at the moment to finish ‘War and Peace’ and ‘Dr Thorne’, so I can go to the new paperbacks I have waiting. The library is also several years overdue for a visit.