My name is Alice and I am a book addict. I have loved reading ever since I learned how to do it, and as a child could always be found clutching a book – while eating dinner, in the bath, walking down the street! As an adult, I have just graduated with a degree in English Literature, so have spent three years doing even more reading than usual.
As a result, I have a lot of books. My room is full of huge stacks, from childhood favourites to those I haven’t even read yet. So when I decided to move to Spain to work as a language assistant with the British Council, I faced a big problem. I had one suitcase for a ten-month stay, so I had to learn to pack lightly. Normally, I bring at least ten books on a two-week holiday (I like to have options!), so it would be impossible to pack enough for a whole year. My Spanish is not good enough to read whole novels yet, and I didn’t know I would find English language bookshops in Sevilla, so I couldn’t rely on buying books when I arrived. My only option was e-books.
The problem? I have always hated e-readers! I even wrote an article about it for my coursework when I was at school. I love physical books and bookshops so much, and e-books seemed emotionless and scientific in comparison. But in Spain, my choice was e-books or no books, so my brother and sister-in-law bought me an Amazon Kindle for my birthday in the summer, with an Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland case to make it look like a real book.
Now I have been in Spain for one month and am on my sixth e-book, and I’m starting to love my Kindle! I still prefer real books, and have four of my favourites with me for comfort*, but the e-reader means I never have to worry about running out of reading material. There are some elements I hate, such as the feature which tells you how much you have read as a percentage, but in general it has become one of my most important possessions!
*For those interested, the lucky few are – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll, I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith, Hons and Rebels by Jessica Mitford and, of course, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling.
Do you prefer e-readers or physical books?