As a writer and a reader, having easy access to books, novels, stories, articles etc are essential to our training. Whether they are published by houses or self-published, it seems, the rise of the eBook is killing the books. We have been seeing this sad decline for years and months, and admired the bookstores that have managed to fight on, but, sometimes, the little guys simply can’t go on.
There’s a book exchange store in my local area that I frequently visit, whether to hunt for treasures to add to my bookshelf, and yes, I’m proud I have bookshelves! Or whether it is to just have a chat to the lady and her mother that run it. I’ve been lucky enough to have her take hard copies of my book and display it for her customers. They have been there for years, encouraging the healthy habit of recycling old books to new readers rather than letting them gather dust in your garage.
Today, as I walked in and browsed the shelves, I overheard the owner say it was time for them to say goodbye. It was simply a very tough task to try to swim in choppy, uncertain waters of physical books and their future. My question is, what is happening to our book culture?
Whatever happened to the desire to take a me time on the sofa, or the cafe, or the bookstore itself, and feel the paper in our hands as we flip pages and watch the simple world of words spring up in our minds? I’m sorry, but I have never been able to feel the same awe at the writer’s feat while reading from an electronic device. It’s just not the same as holding a page in hand, eagerly waiting to flip it over as you get into the story because you can’t wait to see what the next page holds. Nor do electronic device offer the same satisfaction of holding a book in hand once you’ve finished it. You know it now. Some how, you and the book have become friends, and you place it eagerly on the shelf. It gets a home!
I’m saddened to know that another little book world is shutting its doors because people have forgotten them, their purpose.
As I walked out of the doors, I couldn’t help but wonder what will happen to all those books no one wants anymore. No one cares for anymore. When I asked the shop owner, she could only shrug too. Sadly, books, they are forgotten, they are dying. It makes me extremely sad thinking about the future, a world where books will only be in some digital corner on an electronic world. They will no longer have prized spots on people’s bookshelves. In fact, there won’t be any bookshelves left. Out of sight, out of mind. The culture of reading books, prizing their words and displaying them proudly is disappearing.
I bought home four books with me. I couldn’t walk out empty-handed. One of these books is Marian Keyes’ ‘This Charming Man’, which I’ll love to read the only way I grew up reading, and in turn, inspired to a dream that one day, another young girl would hold my own book in hand and discover her own love of stories.
I’ll post my review when I’m done. Not that Marian Keyes’ needs my few words to help her. Any one out there wanting their book to be read and reviewed, you are welcome to chat to me about it.
Till then, I can only hope books will cling on. After all, revival is a trend sometimes. 🙂 I’m staying hopeful.
If you love reading YA genre, then check out my debut novel, In Strange Company, which the bookstore mentioned above was happy to display. It’s received an average of 4.8 Stars and all positive reviews so far across all platforms it’s been on. You can get the hardcopy (which I love) through me directly. The book is priced at $15.95 (excludes P&H). Or you can grab an eBook at $1.99 (USD) Amazon or Smashwords through links below (I know, I know, but that’s how the market is these days, sadly).