"You may say that I am a dreamer/But I am not the only one" John Lennon: "Imagine"

"So come brothers and sisters/For the struggle carries on" Billy Bragg: "The Internationale"

Elizannie has a reading room at 'Clarice's Book Page' http://www.villiersroad.blogspot.com/

Monday, 14 June 2010

My e-reader

I love my e-reader! I first became vaguely interested in buying one when I read a review of the 'appliance' by Andrew Marr in the Gruniad about 18 months ago. Then last year when my neuro probs seemed to be escalating and reading could at times be stressful, although my computer use didn't seem to get so compromised so quickly I thought about buying one and after seeing one 'in the flesh' decided to make the leap and part with the pennies!

It has helped a lot and reading so much 19thC literature I can download so much from free sites on the net. Just now I downloaded something one of my face to face reading groups is doing in September, although I have the 'hard copy' it means that I can take this copy along with the other 130 so books on holiday with me in the e-reader and it will take up less space than an average sized paperback.

The other great use is when - like yesterday - I get a copy of a book out that has been sitting on my shelf for a time and find that since the last read the print has shrunk considerably! So I can download the book and get started whilst I am waiting for amazon to deliver a new copy with larger print.... I find that old hardbacks are the worst culprits for shrinking print. Victorian editions especially. Our ancestors must have been a lot more determined than us when reading - especially when considering their poorer lighting!

There are drawbacks, it is not always easy to find something one has read previously and obviously one cannot annotate the text - but it is possible to 'bookmark' pages and if using the reader for study purposes a small notebook would help. When I have been teaching a book I always have two copies of it anyway - one to read and one to teach from which is full of annotations, post it notes and scribbles whose meaning are known only to me! One can save photographs and things , but despite having had the reader for nearly a a year that is a technical leap I have not yet taken, but it would make a lovely compact, portable photograph album!

The only trouble is that when I get onto one of these free sites I am worse than a child in a sweet shop! Books I have always meant to read or know I have and can't find in the house just beg to be downloaded and because it is so easy to do I just have to do it. Last 'I must download it' was 'The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists', after I had told everyone on the blog that they must read it, I thought it would be a good idea to take it to Somerset with me. Two minutes later there it was in my e-reader, I hadn't even had to look for it in the cupboard to pack [and I do know exactly where that is in my cupboard - right next to the biography of its author Robert Tressel, about a foot from where I am typing this!]

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