Paper Books vs Ebooks – What’s your preference?

by Maryse on April 20, 2016 · 32 comments

in Editorial

Reading “old school” smells so gooooooood!!! :P

When I started my adulthood “reading frenzy” (right after I read Twilight) I couldn’t get enough of books (still can’t!), and this was back when I was in “print book” mode. Hard covers, or paper back, I went on weekly book-shopping sprees, and they started piling up! My book shelves were full, and everything and anything became a makeshift book-storage unit.

But my issues weren’t just at the increasing book-stacks. I didn’t have enough bookmarks, most of my paperbacks were riddled with little highlight-stickers everywhere. Tabs sticking out of every one of my favorite “parts” and trying to neatly stack books loaded in rainbow strips became a struggle.

And don’t even get me started on the nighttime reading-in-bed situation. I constantly needed a lamp on, and if that was too bright, a tiny book-light clip would do the trick. That is, until it would fall off, due to my overzealous book-grip, or the batteries would die, and I’d be in a panic, ’cause I wasn’t even close to ready to put my book down. Or, until I knocked myself in the face with my book, while reading… or should I say… sleep-reading. ;)

And then… the thumb cramps. Having to hold a book for hours on end, struggling to keep it open wide (especially the new books), holding it with one hand, flipping with the other. Or some sort of knee-propping, wrist supporting… and sometimes, I’d even hold the pages down with my feet, huddling over a book, just to get some wrist relief. LOL!!! Ohhhhh the body aches. Reading print books can be a full-body workout, ya know?!! :P Especially for muscles not often used.

But OH BOY did I love my books. NONE of that bothered me enough to ever stop reading, and even when it was suggested I move to “e-book” format, I scoffed  at the idea. Oh HECK no. I’d never be able to feel like I was reading a real book. It just wouldn’t feel right. I probably wouldn’t even be able to concentrate on it. A screen was NOT a book!

And then I received my first e-reader (it was a SONY!!) LOL!! It took me just a few days and I was hooked. I could highlight passages, I could bookmark, it was light as a feather, and I could load that sucker up with as many books as I wanted, and not need any actual physical room for them. Sure… back then, my Sony e-reader wasn’t backlit, so I still needed a nifty book-light made especially for the cover (and still struggled with battery issues), but for the most part, I was a convert. And even more so when I received my first iPad shortly thereafter, and ALL of my reading woes were nil. Now I could hoard iBooks, Nook books, and Kindle books to my heart’s content. And I could read the indie freebies and all of the fan-fiction on Fictionpress. My poor paper books were abandoned. Well, not completely. They still looked so pretty on my shelves, and I still opened them to take a whiff. Ahhhhh that ink and paper smell.

And it was because of my new found love of ebooks (sure enough, they read just like a real book!!), that I discovered the world of indie (albeit MUCH smaller than we know it now). After all, many of the indie books I was finding and loving were not available in print format yet. Had it not been for my e-reader, I would not have had access to some of my absolute favorite stories EVER.

Although, I still knock myself in the face with my e-reader while I’m sleep reading. THAT hasn’t changed… *snort* :P

Oh don’t get me wrong. I still regularly buy print books. But that’s so I can get it signed and put it on my prized signed collection shelf!!! I LOVE THEM!!!

But then, every once in awhile, I find myself reading a paper book. Usually it’s an ARC (advanced review copy), and I want to read the book SO DARN BAD that I just… I go “old school”. Tee hee!!! Like that one up there to the left (One True Loves: A Novel).

P.S. My review (and video!!) for it is coming soon…

P.P.S. If ALL of my e-books suddenly turned into print books, I really WOULD be a case for a “hoarders” episode. LOL!! I LOVE that meme, because it’s so true. *snort*

Maryse: I’m reading a paper book. It feels weird… and organic. I kinda like it! :D

Karen: Doesn’t happen too often any more, but I LOVE reading a REAL book!!

Jenny: I rarely read paperback, however, when I do I try to “swipe” at least once when I need a page turned. I smack my head every single time :P !!!!!!

Maryse: LOL Jenny… I just looked down to see what percentage I was at. *snort* :P

Dani: bahahahaha

Jenny: LOL!! I also push on words for definitions, do you do that too??

Maryse: Jenny Heck yes!!! Highlighting is my problem. I want to highlight passages and my finger produces NOTHING on paper!!!! *gasp*!!!

Suanne: And touching it to highlight :)

Maryse: EXACTLY!!!!!! My fingers produce NOTHING on paper. The horror!! My magic fingers are gone!

Suanne: Why isn’t this taking me to Wikipedia?!

Maryse: EXACTLY!!!!!! Even more then definitions, I want Wikipedia historical documents!!! :D

Suanne: And maps. And pictures. Why do our books not have pictures?

Krystal: I now only buy my favorite author’s books. Ones that I know I will reread again and again.

Maryse: My prized signed collection!!!

Krystal: Especially that !

Saleen: Paperbacks and Hardcovers are good, beacause they have no battery life and no need for charging it up

Emily: Love this!

Maryse: True! Except for the lighting issues at 2am

Lisa: I can’t remember the last time I did that!! The print would be way too small!!!

Amber: I found out on paper books the pages do not turn when you touch the corner either

Maryse: LOL!!!! Annoying thing that is!

Amber: Very! Especially when you sit there waiting for it like come on. Lol Smh

Mbk: You rebel!

Maryse: I feel it. I can actually SMELL the book!!!

Career: Me too. Finally tackling Vampire Academy. Got them from the library. My kindle is collecting dust.

Tessa: Ooh! I loved that series! I hope you do too.

Career: Tessa on the third book, my eyes are killing me, can’t put it down! Lol

Maryse: One of my favorite series ever!!! Great choice!

Tessa: Me too! My big thing is when there’s a word I’m unsure of the meaning, I can’t tap on it to confirm.

Maryse: *snort* :P

Monica: I love my books… will read electronic only when I have too :)

Royal: Lisa It takes me longer to read a book than an ebook. I prefer ebooks, but occasionally when I only can get it as a book, I’ll read it that way.

Holly: I read kindle books 95% of the time but I always buy a couple of paperback books to read on holiday and love it!

Leslie: Yay for paper!

JM: I prefer ebooks. My first reader was a Sony too! And I’ve brusied my nose from sleep reading. ;) lol

Katherine: I’m the odd one out usually. I like ebooks. Mostly because I’m a speedreader and I need to be able to pick up the next book on a whim and go.

Becky: I don’t know when the last time was that I actually read a paper book. I love the idea that I have my entire library on my iPad. I can go back and read anything that I want whenever I want.

Lauren: I’m the same way. I have the Kindle, Nook, iBooks, & GooglePlay Books apps on my iPad & I have books on all of them….my mom is bad about giving useless gift cards….GooglePlay card to someone with an iPhone, iTunes card to someone with a Samsung Galaxy….etc. But I use ALL of the unwanted gift cards in my house.

Lauren: Ebooks. I still have hundreds of paperbacks & hardcovers but they’re just collecting dust on the bookshelves. I haven’t gotten the courage to donate them yet but I will at some point. My son, who is the only one of my kids that enjoys reading, still reads paper books even though he has a Kindle. He’s 11yrs old & reads Vampire Diaries, Twilight, Hollowland,….he has great taste in books. He says he’d rather read paper books because he “likes the way they smell”.

Vicki: Ebooks i can keep them all in one place

Johanne: I thought I would not like reading on a device so I did not buy one. But the universe knew otherwise and I won a Kindle Paper White. Was hooked from the first book! Isn’t great to have access to your complete library all the time ? :D

Lindsay: Because I can find so many ebooks for free or 99 cents, I hoard them more and am less likely to read them because they get hidden in my Kindle. Paperbacks I can see multiplying and am more likely to read, but a book is a book. I’ll take either!

Dianna: My paper white. I love it. I can read anywhere and always have thousands of books on hand. I do have a “real” collection of hardcover sets and signed paperbacks that I keep for show though.

Megan: Ebooks. All the way!

Sadie: If you had asked me two or three years ago EBook for sure. But now Paperback/hard cover except for highlighting, which makes me kind of crazy that I have to deface the book if I want to highlight a quote. But these days I am online all day for work and stuff so it’s nice to have a screen break. I saw these on modern mrs Darcy (to mark pages)

Melissa: Both, eBooks are a bit easier, especially at night, when I’m up at 2am.

Rebecca: I loved reading some paperbacks last year, like old-school, with reading light and all (:P), until the birth of my last baby, who reacts to just the rustle of paper to think, Ah, new toy!! So the convenience of ebooks it is for a while longer :D

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{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Laurie April 20, 2016 at 3:47 PM

I love my books….. But I have a dirty little secret about reading books. I often would get involved in the story , THEN I would flip to the end and read part of the last chapter! Not good, and because of my cheating ,I wouldn’t get the big impact of the ending. However, with my E-readers I don’t skip ahead. Really, My Kobo/Kindle habit has made an honest reader out of me!

Maryse April 20, 2016 at 3:54 PM

LOL Laurie!!!!

I used to do that when I was a teen… ALWAYS flip and read the last line, or last paragraph. Then I realized that I was spoiling the impact, and there was much more oomph in not knowing, so I quit. And you’re right. The ebooks, we tend to not do that.

Although, my mom still does that now. *sigh*

Laurie April 20, 2016 at 4:07 PM

Yes, well I’m 50 now, so my bad habits are deeply rooted! I confessed this to my book club and they laughed! And agreed that I should stick to my E-readers.

Janie April 20, 2016 at 4:47 PM

I am a huge lover of print books, always have been. Yet I find the older I get, the more I want an easy reading experience. I want to take all my books with me wherever I go and not bend them all up putting them in a bag or have to worry about having the right lighting. I haven’t purchased an actual print book in months and find that I read much faster on my Kindle. I have become a convert (*hangs head in shame*)

Jeannine April 20, 2016 at 4:53 PM

I prefer ebooks for night reading and the fact you can read anything, anywhere (especially those must be read on dim, blush reads ;) Plus, ebooks are so cheap. I can take a chance on books I’d never spend $15 on!

Fabi April 20, 2016 at 7:05 PM

I love this post!

I dreamed my whole life of having my own personal library…and now I do…my Kindle library. ;-)

Carol April 20, 2016 at 7:47 PM

If I bought the actual books I would be overrun with them so it’s ebooks for me. And I don’t have to dust them!

Lisa April 20, 2016 at 9:15 PM

I was only just having this conversation with Grace on the other post feed. My house is over run with hard copy books Im trying to get rid of. I love my Kindle….I can read all night without disturbing the hubby, I can read steamy sweaty raunchy bits on the tram without getting ‘the looks’ from other passengers at the ripped torso on the cover and suggestive title (Big Rock, F*#k Love, Pucked etc). I can take a thousand books with me….in my handbag no less…every time I leave the house!
I kind of miss the romance of a battered and loved hard copy book and I”ll always keep my ‘classics’, but with the amount of reading I do, Im doing trees a favour by not buying physical books.

elizaduckie April 20, 2016 at 10:09 PM

Considering I just donated 31 boxes of books as part of downsizing I am exceeding grateful for the availability of ebooks. They have other benefits besides not needing physical storage in my house. I can easily make the print bigger and the backlighting is awesome. I can read across all my devices and add the audible version if I wish. Since the advent of arthritic fingers I find holding a device is actually easier than holding a paperback, and certainly easier, and less weighty, than holding a hardcover. I too love physical books, but the few I buy nowaday’s are either eye candy or reference books devoted to my hobbies. I’m devoted to reading on my devices. Or listening to Audible while I do other things.

Julie o April 21, 2016 at 3:58 AM

I love my kindle but what I miss about the “olden” days of reading paperbacks are going to bookstores and libraries. I could spend some very pleasant hours browsing through books and having a coffee at Barnes and Noble. Good times.

Grace April 21, 2016 at 4:24 AM

As an avid reader, leaving America and my public library behind to move to a foreign country was painful. Living minimally required that I restrain myself and not aquire growing piles of books. My husband is really into music and his iPod allowed him to take his music everywhere without dragging around piles of CD’s so he lost nothing, but I suffered until one day a friend gave me a Kindle!

I lived out Belle’s reaction to the Beast giving her a huge library filled with books along with the wonder of discovering that what I was holding was just as magical as Hermione’s spelled handbag! Everything I need! Right in there! It can go with me anywhere! It’s one of the greatest things that ever happened to me.

Now my husband isn’t disturbed by my reading at night, I’ve discovered a whole new world of indie authors, with Kindle Unlimited I can read like an insane person for a set price!

I’m so devoted to it, I no longer want to buy a purse that my
e-reader won’t fit in even though I sync my devices so I’ve got my current book on whatever device I can get away with having on me. It’s my precious!!!!

Grace April 21, 2016 at 5:51 AM

LISA! How’s this for good times? I just ordered Kylie Scott’s latest and accidentally clicked on the audio book purchase. I then tried to quickly rectify my mistake by heading over to to return it, but couldn’t because it was still processing. So I initiated a chat with customer service to see if they could advise me on how long to wait. Turns out once I explained it all, they processed the return for me right then. It went like this:

Anthony: As you have requested we have returned the audio book “Dirty” and issued a refund in the amount of $12.99.

Ummmm…awesome. Never mind that fancy order number with all those anonymous letters and numbers.

When asked if there was anything else Anthony could do for me, I responded with this.

Grace: Nope! Just really sorry that I had to ask your help to return a book entitled “Dirty.” In my defense, there is a Martini on the cover, but we both know that is not what is dirty. Thank you again. So sorry!

The best part is I was able to click on a button and request the transcript of our chat be e-mailed to me so I can watch my husband laugh hysterically at me!

Guess we can’t avoid ALL varieties of possible shame by going digital. LOL!

Fabi April 21, 2016 at 6:24 AM

LOL Grace. You may have intrigued Anthony enough to read it for himself.

Mindi April 21, 2016 at 7:15 AM

I love my ebooks because I can take all of the books with me and I read anywhere and anytime I want and I have been able to find so many new to me authors that I love this way! But…..I still love my print books. I have a room that is just book shelves in my house! I only buy print versions of books I absolutely love, so I have my Harry Potter books, my Kristen Ashley books, etc.

Elizabeth Lynx April 21, 2016 at 7:27 AM

I used to be a print book reader but then I had kids. Mine are currently 3 & 4 years old and destroy everything in their wake. The few print books I have left I have to hide under cabinet or in boxes so they don’t find them (prized signed copies from authors). Therefore, I now read only ebooks.

Jas April 21, 2016 at 7:49 AM

Laurie, I use to do the same thing! When I only read the paper backs I would take a sneak peek at the ending! Now I’m 90% reding digital books and the 10% is paper backs. The funny thing about the paper backs that I buy is that I don’t read them! I just buy the books from my favorite authors and just hold on to them for a while. See, they are not writing fast enough for me! It makes me worried that I will run out of books. Once in a while I will treat myself with one of those books and read it. Crazy, right!?

R. Renee April 21, 2016 at 8:43 AM

50SOFG was the book that got me to switch to Kindle because, well dug lol. And I’ve stuck with Kindle (app anyway) ever since. A Thousand Boy Kisses was the first book I’ve bought in print form since then and I only did that so I could pass it on to my daughter after. Two chapters in, and I downloaded the Kindle version because my hands hurt!! Seriously? That’s where we are? I literally put down a book because of a “reading injury.” *shakes head*

On another note. Maryse, One True Loves? The buckets of jealousy I feel are astronomical! Astronomical buckets.

Hope Irving April 21, 2016 at 9:19 AM

I used to love paperbacks until I got my first Kindle as a Christmas gift. What I enjoy the most as a French citizen who reads (and writes novels) mostly in English is that I only have to one-click to get the books I want. Before I had to go to some specific bookstores to buy my books in English. My e-reader freed me and I’m super grateful. It helps me as a writer to read a lot of authors (indies or not) in various genres. I love that I can travel light and have 30 books with me. I love that when I’m done reading a book on the Parisian subway, I can read another right after (especially when it is a series). I loved my good old books but I would never go back. E-reader gave a freedom and a wider choice (not everything is available or at the same price on French sites but still). And trust me, the emotions I have reading aren’t any different: the are “real” books!

Grace April 21, 2016 at 10:03 AM

Ok! It’s 10 a night for me and I’ve gone from whiny KA hangover doldrums to having so many exciting new books sitting on my tbr list that I don’t know where to start!

You all ROCK! Seriously! Priceless what you do just being willing to throw out some suggestions and help your fellow readers out of their funk! Thank you!

Now I’ll eanie, meanie, miny mo it and then probably fall asleep! Happy reading to all!

Danielle C April 21, 2016 at 12:36 PM

I’m definitely a book hoarder so when ereaders came along it really helped me out..and my husband. No more cluttered piles of books in the car or the house and I didn’t need a book light anymore! I definitely read more than one book at a time and the kindle saved my life. I can’t go anywhere without this sucker in my purse.

Danette April 21, 2016 at 12:45 PM

I, like many of you, always dreamed of having my own library. Alas, my house isn’t big enough. With my Kindle I not only have my library, but it is with me everywhere I go. I won’t even buy a bag if it isn’t big enough to carry my Kindle. I haven’t bought a hard copy book in years.

Nancy Parken April 21, 2016 at 2:31 PM

I couldn’t agree more, that if it were not for my Kindle and cloud storing all those books, my house would be labeled “hoarder” and when I first came on FB and found your blog (in my paranormal stage) paperbacks were almost all I read.

Ela April 21, 2016 at 4:12 PM

I love my iPad Mini!!!!! And with all the # of books I’m going through I’d need another special storage just for those books…Ebooks all the way, baby!

Dana April 21, 2016 at 4:22 PM

I have a lot! of physical books to read, but my e books have stolen me away. I am going to read a physical book next though because I have so many unread ones that I don’t have for Kindle.
Here’s a tip about bookmarks. I had the same problem because I have 2300 physical books-976 read! I make my own book marks from old tissue boxes. I just cut them to size. A large box can make up to ten bookmarks. Try it and tell me how you like it.
Thanks for your rec, I love Taylor Jenkins Reid. Still haven’t read Roomhate yet because I was reading Sweet Ruin. It will be next after the physical book(Deeper by Megan Hart.)

Tessa April 21, 2016 at 5:03 PM

My first reader was a Sony E-Reader too!

Fabi April 21, 2016 at 5:17 PM

Ditto on the Sony. I think I still have it in a drawer somewhere. From there I went to a mini iPad and then to a Phablet and I haven’t looked back since.

Dana :-O 2300 physical books? Do you live in a library?

Grace April 21, 2016 at 8:24 PM

It’s so good to hear others saying that they won’t buy a purse they can’t put their e-reader in! I’m not the only one who goes nowhere without it! I’m not alone, just a certain kind of special! The next time my husbands glaring at me while I’m testing potential purses, I’ll be sure to inform him that other fabulously intelligent and amazing women make their choices exactly like this and I’ll be telling the truth this time! Score!

Grace April 21, 2016 at 8:28 PM

To be clear. I only have one (1) husband. That should have read “husband is” glaring at me. So, just the one. Although, he might beg to differ since he resistantly shares me with my book loves.

Saunders April 22, 2016 at 8:57 AM

now prefer E-books due to the amount of books I read,. easy to carry and I can read and download at a buttor – cant do that with books.

Maryse April 22, 2016 at 10:20 AM

I don’t go anywhere without my iPad… always have it so I can read no matter where I am. I’m never bored. ;)

Maryse April 22, 2016 at 10:54 AM

LOL Grace!!!

I’m glad they got the audiobook snafu fixed for you… Did your husband laugh?

Grace April 22, 2016 at 11:26 AM

Maryse- Oh yeah, he thought it was great. Then he said it could have been worse and suggested a possible title or two as examples. I can’t print any of them here for propriety’s sake. He did this laughing at me the whole while. Granted I was laughing too!

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