Thursday, 11 November 2010

The Feel of a Book




I went in to change my library books this morning and was pleased to be asked to come in and help shelve books again twice a week. I do this on and off when I can and when they are short-staffed. Oddly, I like shelving the books (I usually do the children’s section) – it’s quite relaxing if you only do it twice a week. Just the sight and feel of lots of books makes me feel calm and serene and in awe of all the effort and talent that has gone into the production of any kind of book. I try to squash the feeling of dread that threatens to steal over me when I think of all I must read before I die and all those I am not going to get to. It’s almost akin to the feeling I get when I switch on my computer except that that feeling is one of hyped up excitement in tune with the kind of medium that it is. Books, though, are much more user friendly - the worst that can happen is that you can find a page missing. You don’t need much schooling to be able to read a book. Long live the printed page! I sat on a bus the other day when someone was reading something on a ‘Kindle’. It may look impressively like a book with pages but it’s still made of metal – not the same feel at all, and there’s always the chance that it’s battery runs out. No, for me, real books are here to stay – unless we run out of pine plantations.

2 comments:

  1. I love books!! My mother instilled a love of books in me and I am doing the same (I hope) for my children. I find that the sight of shelves full of books gives me a peaceful contented feeling. There is just something about books that can't be replaced by the most spectacular of technology innovations! My problem is space. At one time I had well over 3000 books in boxes packed away because there wasn't enough room for them all on my few shelves. I dreamed of building more shelves in my tiny little house but it just isn't feasible. I finally sold my collection, keeping enough to fill my shelves, and I hope someone else is enjoying them the way they were meant to be enjoyed! I dream of the day that I'll be able to move to a bigger house and maybe, just maybe, have a proper library! I'll be a book buying madman then! :)

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  2. Oh wow! 3000 books! I am always loathe to get rid of mine too - but now I 'lend' out some favourites, resigned to people maybe losing or not returning them. As long as someone else gets some pleasure.

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