They say don’t judge a book by its cover but frankly I’m a total book slut for buying gorgeous hardback beauties and turning my nose up at any cover that I don't view as worthy enough to be seen carrying in public, or worse still, has a film still on it - this says that you only discovered it AFTER Eddie Redmayne was on Graham Norton talking about it, which means you’re not a serious enough bookworm.
Which brings me to the Kindle debate…
The simple fact is that I don’t read enough these days.
I have a child, therefore reading time is limited to between 7.53am and 8.11am daily when I am on the train to work and not counting the Daily Mail celebrity sidebar of shame as any semblance of intelligent reading. Whilst I longingly eye up the pile of books on my bedside table, all too often I’m either too knackered to turn more than one page or they are all too gigantic to lug to work without giving me another reason to visit an osteopath (case in point; The Story: Love, Loss & The Lives of Women: 100 Great Short Stories by Victoria Hislop, so huge it weighs more than my son).
I admit, I was totally against the idea of having a Kindle, purely from a romantic point of view. No pages to sniff as you turn but instead a black plastic thingy whose USP is getting turned on by the font size options and the fact it has a torch and a battery life to shame your iPhone into the bin.
When I mentioned this dilemma in passing to the Gods of Facebook (AKA, the friends), there was a strong divide in opinion, only to be decided one way – to bloody well try it. So Mr B bought me one for Christmas.
My husband is known in the family for being a present-buyer with extraordinary talent (sexism alert – more so given also that he is a boy). Over the years there have been surprise visits to the opera, gorgeous vintage jewellery (including my engagement ring, chosen entirely by him) and a framed drawing of the place where we met, to get all gooey about. We won't delve too deep into Gift-Gate 2013, the year where a curveball was chucked and my presents took a downward dip so that I started to wonder if Mr B had me confused with his great auntie Florie 'up north'. He redeemed himself post-Mini B's arrival (blackmail relating to childbirth may have played a part in this) and whilst Mr Kindle ticked all the boxes on a practical but albeit unglam level, I was secretly relieved to also open the Cos jumper, theatre tickets and this beauty of a real-life-book-you-can-actually-smell afterwards.
The proof is in the pudding as it were and by the end of February, I had read four whole books on my daily commute (reviews to share later).. That's more than my entire 2014 read tally in total (shameful but true). It’s like rediscovering a long lost friend and feeling the relief that you still have something to talk about other than the weather and that time when you were eight and got stuck in the loo at school.
So the fact that the Kindle is actually giving me the opportunity to read, despite my snobbish preconceptions, is a winner for me.
And as so wisely put by a friend of mine on the Kindle vs ‘Real book’s debate, you can have BOTH!...