What’s happening to books? Earlier, during long journeys, in airports or stations, you would find people reading books or at least magazines while waiting for their flights or trains. On long train journeys most people would be reading books, a popular novel maybe or a crime fiction. I have often exchanged books with co passengers on such train rides.
I am talking about my student days, when mobiles were unheard of. Rather than chit chat with fellow passengers many preferred to read. Now, a generation stuck to mobile, you find people glued to it’s screen. There’s no reading, no chit chatting, coz we are so occupied with our little phones.
So have people stopped reading? The answer is both yes and no. Reading as we knew it, spending hours with a book, has certainly gone down. People resort to mobiles now for news and popular reads. Newspapers put up a brave fight for a while and then finally launched digital editions. For books there are kindles, tabs and laptops. Therefore we have e books.
E books are practical, I have been told. They don’t take up space, they don’t need to be dusted. Do you read a book more than once, I was asked. Maybe not, besides poetry and a few of my very favorites. But I belong to the generation that loves to own books. I am proud of my collection of books. I happily dust them and browse through them as often as I can.
Posting about books on my blog that will be consumed via mobiles or tabs. The irony is not lost to me. I wish I could put my thoughts in a journal, dog eared and blotted with ink marks, and present them to you. For the feeling of holding an old journal or a book, the sound of paper rustling as we turn pages, sometimes an old letter or a dried flower slipping out, nothing can match that feeling. To me, the pleasure of reading a book is priceless!