It comes as no surprise to me that 40% of e-reader users said they now read more than they did with print books in the recent survey published in the Wall Street Journal.
Since my iPad arrived in the mail two months ago, I’ve managed to blow through three novels — a record-breaking pace for a slow reader like myself. Typically, it takes me a couple of months to get through just one book, depending on the height of the stack of magazines piling up on the nightstand, workload, and school and family obligations.
But since joining the ranks of the “11 million Americans who are expected to own at least one digital reading gadget by the end of September” (an estimate from Forrester Research, according to the article), I’ve become an e-reader convert.
What’s the appeal? Novelty, to be sure. The experience of “turning the page” is still fun, even after the third book. It’s light and easy to carry, the fonts are clear and legible, and reading is easy on both the Kindle app for the iPad and the iBook app. I can relax and descend into the world the author has created just as easily as with a print version — if I choose to.
This might sound strange, but I think what I like about it best is that it gives me immediate access to my one-stop media shop. For better or for worse (and some argue that it’s definitely for the worse), the fact that I have access to my email and the Internet right there actually frees me from those distractions and allows me to focus on my book even better. If I didn’t have those tools handy, I might be more tempted to put the book down and go in search of a tangent idea that I have to Google, never to return to my book.
I’m curious to see if my 7-year-old daughter will be more interested in reading books on the iPad than her beloved paperbacks. Although, truth be told, I’m hesitant in adding another feature that would make us compete for time on the gadget.