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  • Writer's pictureJulie Mackin

Get thee to the library (or at least to Libby)

It must be obvious by now that I spend a lot of time not just reading books but thinking about them as well. Besides my so-called physical book collection policy there is my Kindle policy, my reading strategies policy, my popsugar challenge policy, and my library planning policy. You get the idea. All fascinating let me assure you, I’ll probably share them with you (I know, whoopee!)

The Kindle: It’s amazing right, you have this little device that you can cart around and it holds hundreds of books, thousands of pages. Now when you go on vacation you don’t have to pack tons of books that take up space and precious weight in your bag (shoes are equally important). And if you finish one, you just start something new. You can be on the most crowded morning train and still manage to read a 900 page tome on your phone no less. Or 50 Shades of something trashy and no one can judge. Of course, no one is awed by your ability to read Ulysses either, so it cuts both ways.

But here is the problem: I was on quick trip to Virginia recently and I brought two hard hardcovers with me, for 36 hours! I LIKE having physical books (see previous post). And here is the other problem, I like to loan books to people. I finished I'm Glad My Mom Died and think everyone should read it, but I can’t loan it to anyone without giving them my Kindle. That is so not happening.

When it comes to time to buy a book, I can’t decide whether to buy it on my Kindle or actually just purchase the physical book. How long is it? How heavy? Will anyone else want to read it? How soon do I want to read it? Can I justify spending $12.99 on this? My Kindle purchases are just all over the place. And if the Daily Deal, Amazon’s most brilliant idea ever, happens to have a book I own, I must buy it. Now I can have them in two places!! Then there are books I was only slightly interested in but for $2.99 I’m all over it (I am also the person that loves something THAT MUCH MORE if it was on sale). One day they offered some ridiculous number of those Eyewitness Top Ten travel guides. I shit you not, I bought twenty of them. Half I already own! I’m overwhelmed by what I am not reading when I look at my Kindle. I don’t know where to begin, where to start. It’s just bookshelves at home.

You know what my answer to all this is? Go to the library. Most of the books I read, either the physical book or the ebook, come from the library. The Kindle has become just one more place for me to stack books, it just has infinitely more space. I am thinking I might need help.

Full confession: the only thing that gets bought without hesitation on the Kindle is romance novels. I don’t get them from the library because I want to OWN them. Though I can stack and shove quite a few in a small space, they still take up a lot of space and it takes a while to move them around to get to the one I really want at the moment. Having them on the Kindle is the best thing that ever happened and that is the real reason why I love it. I preorder those babies because I want them the minute they come out. None of this waiting for Prime or driving to Barnes and Noble bullshit. I think I make myself read the dreary, dense biographies so that I can go on an regency romance bender.

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