Wednesday, March 12, 2008

National Read an e-Book Week?

Last week was National Read an e-Book Week (no one ever tells me anything!) and this site talks about various good reasons to check out e-books that I confess I hadn't thought of. Reduce your carbon footprint through choosing e-books? Hrrm, I suppose an e-book must use fewer resources to produce.

And not going into landfills? I don't generally think about books going into landfills, because when was the last time I actually threw out a book? I was about to say "never," but there were a few that White Thing, the Amazing Cat Who Peed Everywhere, irremediably damaged, and more than likely the freebie books I elected not to lug home from RWA got tossed. I suppose another advantage with e-books, though, is that if you're sure you'll never read it again, you hit delete and it's gone, rather than collecting dust in your basement or rattling around in that box in the trunk that honest, you will get to the library used book sale someday.

But when I think about the good things about e-books, I don't think of being green. I think, first and most importantly, of the fact that a lot of fun books, especially in the erotic vein, are only available in electronic format. And it's a handy format for things smutty. You can download it at 4 AM during a moment of insomniac boredom and relieve your boredom on the spot (and possibly get rid of the insomnia, if the book proves sufficiently inspirational to tire you out). You can hide it on your Palm Pilot and read it at the office during your lunch break, or on a plane, or while you're taking care of your sick mother. (Morgan Hawke and Kate Pearce got me through Mom's illness last year. Mind you, if my mother hadn't been sick, I'd have read a print erotic romance in front of her, and she might have borrowed it when I was done. But her heart was already palpitating oddly...Kinky threesomes in the Regency period might have killed her, if only because she'd have wanted to find her reference books to check the details about undergarments and she'd been strictly told to stay put) If you're easily embarrassed, it's probably far easier to download an erotic romance than to buy it in a bookstore. (I wouldn't know, not being easily embarrassed.) Gods know, there's a lot to be said for ease of storage. E-books take up no room on your shelves and not all that much on your hard drive, and they don't collect dust and cat hair.

And as my dear blind friend Randy points out, e-books are wonderful for the visually impaired book lover because blind people already have software that will read them out loud. Much cheaper than audio books, and a different selection!

I admit I prefer print books. They're tactile. Cuddly, in a way, for an English teacher's daughter. Reassuring. Even though my desk chair is by fair the most comfortable chair in the house, it doesn't encourage the kind of curling up with a cat that seems to go with novel-reading. And I confess that sometimes I'll buy an e-book and forget about it since it can't join the rest of my TBR pile in plain sight.

But I'm becoming an e-book convert, and not just because one of my publishers is primarily an e-publisher.

Try might like it! Start with Lady Sun Has Risen.


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