The heartbreak of a Kindle

I love my Kindle with the deep and abiding passion of a lifelong bibliophile who is suddenly able to carry several dozen books with her at all times. In her purse. I love its convenience. I love its ease of reading. I love being able to get a book I want RIGHT NOW RIGHT NOW. I love the space-saving organization and of course the financial savings.

But I also love books. Real books with spines and pages. I don’t want books to go away. I had this conversation with somebody recently, and we decided that real books won’t ever go away entirely. Heck, vinyl hasn’t gone away entirely. In fact it’s come back.


So I have a plan, to strike a bargain with the Reading Gods to continue to support real books while still enjoying my Kindle. Here’s my plan: read books on my Kindle as usual, but if I read a book I really love, I go buy it in hardcover or paperback. Yes, I realize this means I’ll be buying some books twice. But the economics still work in my favor. Say I buy five books on Kindle. Average cost, I’ll spend $50 on those five books. Assuming they were a mixture of hardcover and paperback editions, those same books would probably have cost me $100 in a bookstore. So I’ve saved $50. Now, if I really love one or even two of those books and go out and buy their physical forms, I’m still probably getting away with less than the $100 I would have spent originally. And just the other day I bought a few books at Half Price Books for less than their Kindle editions would have cost, so there’s that.

I like this plan. I’ve already put it into motion. I purchased the hardcover of At Home: A Short History of Nearly Everything and plan to buy a hardcover of Room as well. This way I can read whatever I like without taking up space on my bookshelves while still building a physical library made up only of books I really love and want to have. Win-win!


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