Why This Girl Will Never Buy a Kindle (Or Digital Book)

By Leann Zafuto

Imagine this: you love books and the whole experience of “books.” Going to the book store, picking out a crisp, clean book off the shelf (or ordering from a discounted price on-line), cracking the cover open, the smell of the page, a special bookmark, the whole happy experience. Then, the Kindle arrives. None of the above happens. Nothing. Sure there are many positives about the Kindle or an iPad (reading a book on-line), which I can see, but imagine a life (or a home), without books? Digital books only? Dull and flat. Either way, the Kindle is NOT for me, or countless friends and associates I speak with. I am not alone here.

Why the backlash? It’s not exactly a backlash vs. a “not even an option” for me. The catch is simple yet complex: I live for and love books and being an artist and fashion person, I buy tons of art and fashion type books, big books with big colorful illustrations! Therefore how could this be captured in a *gasp* Kindle or digital book that you cannot touch, smell, feeling that cracking when you first open it? Whether it be a novel or a big colorful art book, nothing about a digital book can capture all the joy a real book brings. The internet and all the on-line everything is good for many things, BUT NOT ALL. You can take away the cd for me, I get it I supposed, gone goes the collecting of that too. But this girl will never buy a Kindle!

First, I’m not worried about the space saving aspect of books on my book shelf or coffee table. I welcome it and put them even on the bathroom vanity and nightstand. They are part of my home d�cor, and show who I am and what I like. I’m not a digital machine therefore I don’t wish to be reflected like that in any way shape or form. (You took my cds; you’re not taking my books!) Books are a classic and make you look and feel chic and classic. Once they are read and upon a shelf, you almost feel a sense of accomplishment. I do. That’s gone with a *gulp* digital-anything.

Then there’s the true book experience; meeting the author. I absolutely love going to book signings in New York City or wherever I happen to be. I thrive on the many authors I have met and would never part with my collection. They don’t read a short excerpt from a Kindle, they read to you from a book! Is an author going to sign the back of your Kindle? No. It’s an honor to have met them, show my friends and proudly display these on my bookshelves. Being a magazine-addict; the collecting, or light collecting (not a pack rat here!) and the proud display and feeling of accomplishment of reading them all is beyond wonderful. Having them signed by the author; priceless.

What happens if your library when the Kindle crashes? Books don’t “crash.” Or, if it breaks. Books don’t break either. I guess it doesn’t matter if you have already read the book. And, how do you pass it on to a friend to also enjoy? How do you see and enjoy the big colorful illustrations? How do you see Andy Warhol’s prints or deKoonings images on a Kindle? How on earth can you capture Alexander McQueen’s fashion icon book with the cover holograph of the skull on a machine? The novels…I love the page turning (not sliding), and bending a rabbit ears on my old Twilight novels. Granted it’s the digital era and for the most part it’s fabulous, but digital books to I guess, save space. No way Jose!

In conclusion, (for now); the bookshelves, the accomplishment, the signings, the smell and feel, not to mention the big colorful artistic and fashionable illustrations in the books and so much more — this is just the beginning of my rant “for” books. Not “against” digital books, per say. I try to find the positives in life, usually. I find a ton in real books, fewer in Kindles or digital books. Books are classic and iconic and have so much to offer. Again saving space and packing 2,000 books on a tiny machine is not thrilling for me. Nothing beats cracking open a real book and proudly displaying it on my coffee table, signed.

I hope others feel the same and understand the iconic importance of books. Unlike cds, per say, books are timeless, they’ve been around forever! And, I’m all about timeless everything, that’s why this girl will never buy a digital book! – Leann Marie Zafuto

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