You may or may not have noticed (I guessed it depends on how much you follow the technology side of the news) that e-book readers are becoming more and more popular with Amazons Kindle being launched at a price where it suddenly doesn’t seem to cost too much for the device. But is it actually worth it? Firstly a bit of background about myself. I’m a big reader, I enjoy settling down with a good book. A few years ago when the BBC did a search to find the nations favourite book, I settled down and started by reading the top 21 shortlist, followed by extending this out to the top 100. I’ve wiled away many a day in a comfortable corner with a good book and like to try and read as widely as I possibly can (though I’ve never really got into Indian literature – it just doesn’t work for me). I have been known to be reading 4/5 different books at the same time, switching between them as my mood dictates, and if I go on holiday I normally carry with my 4/5 different books as well, just by dint of knowing how quickly I can get through them (as a speed read challenge I read Dickens Bleak House in a day)… The basic gist I’m trying to get at here is that I enjoy reading, so surely a device that will allow me to carry hundreds of books in one easy light-weight package would appeal to me… Well for some reason it doesn’t. If I was to be completely honest I’m not sure why it doesn’t appeal to me either… I like my gadgets, I like reading, having a large selection of books/the option to buy one on the go seems a really good idea. I admit the shape of the Kindle doesn’t really appeal to me, but there’s other devices on the market that appeal more and my phone does include e-book reading software which is use very regularly to do a bit of reading on the bus – and this is something that I really enjoy, being able to read on the bus without having to worry about the hassle of carrying a larger book around with me – I wouldn’t want to carry War & Peace to and from work every day no matter how good a read it is (which it is…). The problem is I couldn’t see myself using one for everyday reading. I enjoy the physicality of a book too much, the texture of the paper, the smell of a really new or old book, for me this adds to the experience of the reading. Another big issue for me is power. If my e-reader runs out of charge I can’t read my book, not a problem I have with a good old paperback – I’ve never had one of those fail on me yet (except for one book which was mis-printed…). Finally a big issue for me is the cost – I buy a large number of my books second hand, because I acutally quite like it when the cover of a book looks a bit tatty, it shows the books been read – and surely a book that looks like it’s been read is more appealing than a book which sits on the shelf untouched? For a start you don’t get this with e-books – they always look the same despite their age, or the number of times they’ve been read. The other issue I have is the cost. If I buy a book it’s normally a good cheap price. The dicussion we were having earlier was fired by the cost of 1984 for the Kindle – £4.80 – I just ran a search on Amazon and was able to find the book for £0.01 plus postage (around £2). This seems a much better deal to me, as after I’ve read the book if I didn’t enjoy it I can pass it on to the local charity shop, and they can get some more money out of it – something you can’t do with an e-book. Don’t get me wrong e-book readers aren’t all bad – as my friend Steve pointed out, it means he can read in bed without waking his wife – which I’m sure is a big boon to both of them, it’s just that whenever I’ve tried an e-book reader it’s not worked for me, yes I will try a Kindle if I can get my hands on one, and it could be I’m pleasently suprised, but for now give me a paperback any day.