Reading: From Print to Digital

August 14, 2014 at 7:38 pm | Posted in Culture, Mental Health, Psychology, Reading, Society, War and Conflict | 11 Comments
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kindle-book-shelf

When I reached my sixties, I was reading lots of murder mysteries, forensic crime and dark thrillers, depending on my mood. I have read just about all of the books by Kathy Reichs and Patricia Cornwell, and some of Sue Grafton’s alphabet crime series, a couple of Richard North Patterson, and lots of others. Raymond Khoury’s thriller, The Sign, was particularly good.

I have gone back to the past a few times and to more literary novels. A couple were Australian authors. I enjoyed Eleanor Dark’s Slow Dawning (written in the 1930s), and Ruth Park’s Playing Beattie Bow (written in the 1960s), as well as Park’s two-part memoir. I also read Ken Follett’s World Without End, set in the Middle Ages.

I even tried to read D.H. Lawrence’s Lady Chatterley’s Lover, but I gave up on it about half way through. I did, however, relish the style and language of Paul Morgan’s The Pelagius Book. Then there are the novels of Tim Winton, Alex Miller and Khaleid Hosseini – wonderful writers!

Lady Chatterley

Now, well into my sixties, I read more post-apocalypse novels than I ever did, and even quite a bit of fantasy. I didn’t really get into those until the last few years, and I was wondering why recently. I decided that the state of society and the world these days – the violence, destruction, intolerance and hatred – have caused me to need an escape.

Destruction

The end of the world as we know it now seems to be a just outcome for those who have caused such pain and misery to so many innocent people. Unfortunately, many more innocent people would dies. However, post apocalypse times are when the resilient and resourceful have their chance to survive, even if it is against terrible odds. Perhaps it is a hope I have that the better aspects of mankind will finally prevail against the worst.

The same goes for fantasy. In other worlds, heroes – male and/or female – battle the evil forces that would destroy them. In the end there is victory for the good – even if it does come at the end of a series of three or four books!

LordofTheRings

I loved JRR Tolkein’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy and even watched the movies – which I thought extremely well done (and I am not a movie-goer). I have tried Stephen King again and got through Under the Dome and The Stand. I have the complete Harry Potter books in a boxed set (I haven’t seen the movies though), and have found several good fantasy authors on Amazon Kindle. There are lots of fantasy series out there which are quite well written, as well as being great stories.

Two series by Edward W. Robinson – The Breakers and The Cycle of Arawn are good. The Muirwood series by Jeff Wheeler really got me in, as did Aaron Pogue’s trilogy, The Dragonprince’s Legacy. I also really enjoyed Michael G. Manning’s Mageborn series. I recently read Jason Mott’s The Returned, which, I believe was made into a telemovie. All of these I obtained as e-books.

MuirwoodTrilogy

My Kindle has led me into a whole new range and variety of reading. E-books are cheaper than print, and because of that, I have been able to sample a whole new range of authors and genres. Either I would never have come across these in print, or the price would have put me off.

kindle_look_insideYes, there is a lot of rubbish out there, but if you check the synopsis, reviews, and the success of the author, you can usually tell which will be of a reasonable standard. And if you can read a sample, you will get a good idea of the quality of the writing.

Some of the new authors I have come across through accessing e-books on my Kindle, apart from those I have already mentioned, include:
Fantasy & Post-apocalypse: Anna Elliott, Robert Clive Parnell, Peg Brantley, Erica Liodice, Julie Morrigan, Lori Brighton, R.T. Kaelin, M.R. Mathias, Jodi McIsaac, Erica Stevens, Katie W. Stewart, Kevin Bohacz.
Thrillers: Michael R. Hicks, Robert Ellis, Barry Friedman, Tom Lowe.

Lee Goldberg The Walk

Whodunits & Murder Mysteries: Kathleen Backus, Jeffrey Siger, Camilla Chafer, L.L. Bartlett, Debra Mares, Andy Straker, Lee Goldberg, Terri Reid, James Hankins, T.R.Ragan, Edie Claire.
Real life novels: Melissa F. Miller, Othello Back, Helen Ginger.
Young Adult: Aida Brassington.
Writing: Chris Thrall.
Memoir: Joy deKok, Cynthia Harrison
Of course, I have come across a lot more than these, but I decided just to share the ones I liked best.

Kindle

My Kindle goes with me whenever I travel. That is another of its great advantages. I can carry a hundred books in the space and weight it would take for only one slim printed volume. However, I will never give up on printed books. If you saw our bookshelves you would see that! There is something about them that is more evocative of worlds and more personal than an e-reader can ever be.

Talking about Books

Have you made the transition from print to electronic books? Do you use both, or do you stick mainly with one medium?

© Linda Visman

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11 Comments »

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  1. I can’t do without my Kindle Linda. Thanks for a great post. Tell me a little more about Tim Winton and Alex Miller. You obviously feel they are worth reading. I’m trying to find some new authors. When I say new I mean authors I haven’t read yet.:)

    • Don, those two writers are Australian and have both won high awards for their writing. Tim Winton’s novels are set in Western Aust., and Alex Miller’s in Queensland. Both are seen as more literary than popular, and both bring out a real feeling for the country.
      You should find plenty of information about both on google. However I don’tknow if either has published electronically.

      • Thanks for that Linda. I have googled them both. Their work looks good and they have published electronically. I notice quite a bit of romance in their books. I haven’t anything against that provided it’s not soppy romance. I enjoy the whole relational dimension in novels provided it’s done well.

  2. I’m a devoted fan of the traditional, paper books. I find that reading from a screen tends to give me sore eyes and headaches. It’s a necessary part of producing my own writing, of course, but to read for enjoyment I always chose good old-fashioned print books.

    • I was surprised at how well I took ti my Kindle, Margaret. I didn’t expect to use it much, but I do. However, I also love my extensive library of print books, and will always do. 🙂

      • I have friends who also love the capabilities of their Kindle, and I can see its virtues. Glad you like it!

  3. My kindle travels with me as well! There’s always time to squeeze in a good book. The strange thing is I’ve never been able to read a book while riding in a car as it makes me really sick, however I don’t have that problem with my kindle.

    • Suzikate, you are fortunate you can read your kindle in the car. I have never been able to read in a moving vehicle, and the kindle doesn’t change that unfortunately.

  4. The sample of a book that Kindle permits is one of its greatest draw cards for me. It only takes a chapter or two to know whether the writing style and voice of the author will coax me down the rabbit hole, and Kindle gives me this. However, the textured paper of some books is too delicious to forego and I have the favourites on shelves.

    • I agree, print books for favourites!

      • If I can’t check out the first few pages, I rarely buy a book, unless I know the author. So I too find the preview facility ver valuable.


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