The reader's dilemma

'Tis the season of the tablet. I love buying books. Even more than shoes. But we've run out of space. The shelves are crumbling. Do I get a Kindle, an iPad (The New Yorker, the cover featured here, has an awesome app for that) or keep buying hardcovers and supporting local bookstores. I wrote about the dilemma in today's column.

Like many people, I love Apple products, even wrote an appreciation of Steve Jobs, though after reading Walter Isaacson's biography of Steve Jobs, a not altogether likeable character with a dismal record on philanthropy.

Blog Image 317527 - Heller

But then we ran Donald Barlett and James Steele's investigation on Apple's factories in China, and I had doubts all over again.

Spoke to Jim for advice, and learned he has an Apple and a Kindle, and recommends both!

Then I called Michael Fox, of Joseph Fox Bookshop, who told me: 

"You need to support independent bookstores because, when there aren't any more good bookstores, there won't be any more good books," he says. "Amazon will dictate what's published, and little books of poetry and mid-range fiction" - quality works that aren't top sellers - "will disappear. In a country like this, which values freedom of speech as perhaps its defining characteristic, we need to publish a range of books."

 And now I'm in a quandary all over again, though a friend advises "buy more shelves."

--Karen Heller

We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Load comments