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Let’s Talk About Ebooks: Here are the Pros and Cons

I’ve always had a love for reading, but this summer my obsession came back full force. Once I had read almost every book on my bookshelf and was dying to read new books, I resurrected my old Kindle that I got for my 10th birthday. Ever since, I’ve been using it constantly and having deja vu from using it as much as I used to. After reading over 40 books this summer – about half of them being physical books and half of them ebooks – I have some thoughts and opinions about reading books electronically.

Pros

saves money

This is probably my number one reason for reading on my Kindle. Books can be super expensive and the costs can add up very quickly, especially if you go through books fast. Ebooks are usually way cheaper and way more accessible than going to the bookstore all the time.

easy to travel with

My Kindle makes traveling so much easier and way less stressful. I can just pack my Kindle and have hundreds of books ready to read instead of trying to fit a bunch of books in my bag without even knowing if I’m bringing enough.

Saves space

As a college student living in a dorm, saving space is essential. Although I love having my bookshelf at home full of books, I definitely don’t have space in my dorm room for my whole book collection.

access to unlimited books

My TBR (to be read) list is constantly changing as I get new book recommendation. When I buy books from the bookstore in advance, I find that I often want to buy a new one to read first. On my Kindle, I can download any book at any time, which I absolutely love.

more comfortable

Okay, so I agree that nothing beats the feeling of holding a book in your hands while reading, but being able to just hold my Kindle and tap the screen to flip the page is also pretty cool. Being able to comfortably read in bed has been a game changer (but maybe not the best for my sleep schedule).

cons

can’t annotate

One of my favorite things to do while reading is to highlight my favorite quotes or moments in books, or to put tabs on certain pages so that I can look back at them after I finish reading. You technically can highlight quotes on Kindle, but it just isn’t the same and I definitely find myself missing that as I read ebooks.

investment

Although I truly believe it is a worthy investment for someone who reads a lot, Kindles and other ebook readers can definitely be pricey at first, especially depending on which type you buy.

Can’t loan to friends

I love giving my friends, especially friends that don’t normally read a lot, book recommendations and letting them borrow my books. Obviously, with ebooks, you can’t loan the copy to people.

not having A physical copy

One of the worst feelings is finishing an amazing book on my Kindle and wishing I had read it in a physical copy instead. Usually, if it was good enough, I’ll buy the book after so that I can own it, but I usually still regret not buying it beforehand.

I absolutely love my Kindle, but there is definitely something unbeatable about sitting down with a physical book. Overall though, reading is reading, no matter what form you consume it in!

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Elizabeth Tait

U Mass Amherst '24

Elizabeth is a sophomore at UMass Amherst double majoring in psychology and sociology. She is very passionate about mental health and hopes to work in that field in the future. In her free time, she loves reading, listening to music, watching sunrises at the beach, playing tennis, and traveling.
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