So some of you might remember that months ago I did a post about ebooks after having committed what I once thought was akin to heinous crime and purchasing a Kindle. You might then too remember that after using my kindle for a bit, I fell in love (almost; nothing beats the feel of great books in your hands still) and happily ate my words. Well after that experience it got me thinking about other modes of reading books that exists and whether I should try them out or not.
I know some people read on their phones and I personally love this idea and have books loaded to my phone automatically (It was a huge surprise to find them there one day!). I know others read ebooks and the like on their Ipods. I unfortunately have a classic Ipod and haven’t worked out how to achieve this yet – and I don’t think I will, because my limited research so far has proven that only Ipod Touch’s have the ability to read on them. Sigh. I just don’t trust myself with a Ipod touch though (I’m a dance teacher in my spare time and if you saw the things that happened to my Ipod, you wouldn’t either!).
For years I’ve been reading online. Like many other like-minded people I started out first reading and then writing fan-fiction in my teens and earlier, and then moved onto the more original sites as writing styles and levels developed and expanded. So in many ways my previous disposition to ebooks shouldn’t have been a problem, as after all I’d been reading electronically for as along as I could remember. Recently however, I’ve taken what I want to consider a brave new adventure into audio books and so far I’m not quite sure how this is working out for me as a reader.
Basically I love the concept of having a book read to you. It reminds me of my childhood where I would beg, borrow and guilt my parents and anyone who stood still long enough to read me books. I love the freedom it allows and the way in which it adds a whole new dimension to a narrative as the story is not only read now, but listened to and lived with characters given voices, emotions and that unique story-time atmosphere. So when I recently hired out my first audio book I was excited and rushed home to put it on my Ipod ready for my next adventure. The plan was to listen to Melina Marchetta’s ‘On The Jellicoe Road’ in the car on my way to and from work and dancing instead of crap radio and the one CD that lives in my car and I think I’ve been listening too for the past four months non-stop.
Sadly, things didn’t quite work out that way.
I don’t know if I choose the wrong book to try this with or not, and its quite possible that I did, but I became obsessed with ‘On The Jellicoe Road’ so much so that I couldn’t wait to get in the car and listen to the narrative. I was constantly thinking about the story and wanted to learn more and more, so much so that I started to listen to it at home, then in bed, and then over the weekend. Before I knew it the book consumed my weekend, holding me captive in a zoned out state as I sat on my bed immersed in the narrative being told to me (see my review later on this week regarding more of this book as an audio). Unable to listen and do anything that required too much effort with out missing out crucial parts of the story became an issue for me that weekend, and thus lead me to two days of nothing but listening. And although I loved this experience in some ways, I can’t help but feel that this wasn’t the point or way that the audio book was meant to be used.
So began my second experiment into the land of audio books. This week I’m listening to Belinda Alexander’s ‘Wild Lavender’ and enjoying both the book and format much more. I’m eight or nine chapters in so far, and have to date been able to keep my ‘reading/listening’ time to the car and walk to work (I love that I can read/listen now and walk without the fear of being run over or tripping over my own two feet!).
So I’m curious what are you thoughts of the modes of reading? Are you strictly a paperback reader or do you prefer the electronic book format of a kindle/computer/ereader? Do you listen to audio books or do you strictly prefer to read the written word? What has your experiences been?
NOTE: After having originally posted this post, I discovered that this week is audio book week! Who knew? Talk about fantastic timing hey?!