About Books

Books read and awaiting to be read.

I was thinking about saying something about the Amazon/MacMillan thing but a lot of people have already had their say about the issue in one way or another and they’ve probably said it better than I could. It also didn’t affect me a whole lot because I wasn’t looking for a MacMillan title to buy at Amazon at the time so I wasn’t particularly inconvenienced. I also know where the bookstores are in town so if I hadn’t bought, for example, all the Scalzi books yet and I really wanted to get them, I’d have just walked a few blocks to Border’s at lunch and picked them up there.

What I will comment on was the greater whiny voice of the Kindle readers. Come on people, you sounded like a two year old all “Wah wah I don’t WANNA pay more than $10 for a booo-oook!” Cripes, I don’t wanna pay $8 for a paperback but that’s what the going price for books are and I’m not such a prick as to demand that the book go for less – in some cases less that the cost of producing it – because ‘I DON’T WANNA!” Personally, I’m with the publishing company. If they want to charge a similar rate as the hard cover, why not? The Kindle peeps can either suck it up or wait LIKE THE REST OF US DO for the paperback prices. And then there is the excuse of “I paid a lot for the reader, the books shouldn’t be so expensive!” What the heck kind of rationale is that?

I think I might try to use that Kindle logic the next time I go to the book store. “Wah! I paid $21,000 for my car so I could drive to the store! I don’t think I should have to pay $8 for a paper back! That’s too much!” Maybe I can get them to knock the price down because 21 grand…that’s a lot of dough you know?

Anyhoo, I decided to show my solidarity to the authors and buy some of the books which Amazon wasn’t selling at the time but…I epic failed to find a decent list of affected authors. I found -a- list but I’m thinking Isaac Asimov is beyond caring if his books are being blacklisted or not. Also, I wanted to buy a book from a lesser known author who might appreciate the sales more than perhaps the bigger hitters of Tor (the Sci Fi branch of MacMillan). They didn’t have a list of “Relatively new but still awesome Sci Fi authors which I would find pleasurably readable and whose books I really ought to get but don’t already have” so I jotted down one or two names and wandered off.

Borders had exactly zero of the authors I wrote down but I was in a book buying mood so I decided to support authors anyway and picked up a good handful of (sadly unaffected by the kerfluffel) books. And this brings me to my other point: I like paper books. I like paper books a lot. I like the feel of a physical book in my hands as I’m reading and turning the paper pages. I like the way the light of the table lamp hits the page. I like the sound they make when they turn. I like the color of the covers when they are sitting on my nightstand or the contrast of title and spine if I’ve taken the dust jacket off. I like the smell of slightly older hard covers; already lost that newly pressed smell but not yet musty. I like to see all my books on the shelf where I can stand back and browse along the spines, eventually getting to the book I want but also remembering the good bits from the neighboring books. I like discovering that one book I put on the shelf to read later and haven’t yet. You don’t get any of those experiences with an e-book.

I am not against e-books because they are awfully darned convenient for fast readers and long journeys *cought*TheMan*cough* but I personally just don’t like to read books in electronic format. It doesn’t feel right. Perhaps I’ve become hidebound in my old age but I much prefer a grand room full of books than a hand held device full of same. Plus, I’ve never known a library to disappear or the pages of a book to become garbled with a good electrical shock.

2009: Too busy reading.

2008: I’m a slow reader.

2007: Then – SCREE! SCREE! SCREE!! GIANT SPOOKY CRAZY EYEBALLS!!! That shit scared the beejeebus out of me.

2006: If I sniff deep enough, I can smell France!

2005: JSFR: Koala’s March (chocolate)

2004: My sister, who apparently is the wife of President Charles Taylor, the immediate past president of Liberia, mandated me to search, negotiate and conclude with a competent individual with a solid financial base, on the below mentioned.

2003: And then I swallowed it because you know, the best thing to do when you have a mouth full of liquid lava is to gulp it down.

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