With the invention of the e-reader and companies like Amazon, Kobo and the iTunes stores giving us instant access to books, it’s making it easier to get books without even having to leave our homes.
Bookshops and Libraries have struggled as a result – the latter suffering closures due to budget restraints and Borders was certainly an example of a high street store losing the pricing war with the online retailers.
We have seen many well-known stores disappear from the high street in recent years. Places like Woolworths, HMV and Blockbusters have all struggled and failed to stay ahead of the game when it comes to keeping up with online rivals like Love Film and Netflix. Even supermarkets are posing a big threat not only to them but to bookshops.
I tend to be a user of both. I have a Kindle and despite originally vowing I would never own one, I see the appeal. It’s a chance to store many books in the same place and it’s perfect for holidays, no need to carry heavy books in handbags. However, the online downloading could never replace the excitement of browsing the bookshelves, flicking through the books. Even the smell of books is something I love. There will always be a place for shelves crammed with books in my house.
Which do you use most? Do you think the e-reader is the beginning of the end for bookshops? Do you prefer one over the other and why?
Novel Kicks is a blog for story tellers and book lovers.