I was perusing the Amazon website, searching for a new book to read, and I noticed that a lot of books that looked interesting were available in ebook format. Some of them were priced at only 99¢! I was instantly jealous. Do you know what you can purchase for 99¢? A box of paperclips. One can of Diet Coke. Four postcards. A Wet n Wild lip liner. One roll of LifeSavers. But Amazon was telling me I could also purchase a book for 99¢!
Now, I don’t own a Kindle, or a Nook, or an iPad, but I do have an iPhone with the Kindle app installed on it. I realized I already spend a bunch of time on my phone checking Twitter, updating Facebook, and playing Sudoku; would it really be a stretch to add the ability to read a book on my phone? I logged on to Amazon, bought a 99¢ book, and watched it download.
The effect was instantaneous. I didn’t have to drag my feet to the library or stake out the mailbox waiting for my book to arrive from the shipper. I just clicked a button, easy as that, and my new book was available for me.
I quickly found that the plus side of an ebook is that it is easier to read in situations and areas where pulling out an actual book is not always feasible. Standing in line for coffee at Starbucks? I can just pull out my phone and read a couple of pages while waiting for my cappuccino to froth. Waiting for my bagel to toast? I just read another five pages. This easiness allowed me to read my book quickly since I was reading pages here and there.
I also quickly found that the downside of an ebook is that it is easier to read in situations and areas where pulling out an actual book is not always feasible. I suddenly found myself reading at work, tucking my phone inconspicuously under my desk, sneaking peaks throughout the day. I read while standing in the elevator, while waiting for the light to change to cross the street, even while walking down the street. I had unexpectedly become one of those annoying people that are always looking at their phone glued to their hand. How did this happen?
I felt like a drug addict, sneaking around to get my reading fix. Because it was so easy to read, I felt like I had to read all the time. If I wasn’t reading, I was thinking about reading, thinking about my phone sitting innocently on the table next to me holding a book to browse through. I was consumed.
Eventually, I finished reading my book and was able to put my phone down. I admit I’m not jumping on the ebook bandwagon; I still prefer to hold a tangible book in my hands. However, if I can download an inexpensive or free book, instead of purchasing it or checking it out of the library, you just might find me reading it on my phone.