As a bibliophile married to another bibliophile, I can’t resist leaping into a discussion on our local book editor’s page on the subject of Kindle. Will it make books obsolete? Our modest condo is “nicely crammed” with over 5,000 books! Nevertheless, we are now experiencing our first Kindle read-aloud together, and there are things we actually like about it. Kindle is convenient, and it’s readable in most any lighting. But somehow reading a Kindle book still feels to us more like getting an email from a friend than having a real face-to-face visit.
That being said, my preference for books as a reader has not prevented me from keeping both bases covered as an author. Even my children’s book, The You-Song, is available as an eBook, and Daughter of Jerusalem, my novella for middle grades, definitely had to be. They were written for a generation that’s as comfortable with screens as I am with paperbacks. And who knows where that could lead?
So book editor Jane Henderson’s question remains open: Will books eventually become obsolete? Will shelved volumes seem as cumbersome to future generations as clay tablets or scrolls would to us? I shudder to think of it, but I know it’s possible.