I was recently invited to join a local book group consisting of some wonderful school mums. I eagerly awaited our first meeting… and every meeting since! I love talking about books, I love hearing what other people think about books, I love learning more about how people read; discovering the nuances they find in strings of words that I have glossed over, and vice versa. #nerdalert
Over the past few years I have occasionally shared what I am reading on instagram, and here on this blog too, and have always been surprised at the amount of conversation my piles of (usually randomly combined) books have generated.
Last week at book group (while discussing this book) a conversation was had over who could read e-books and who couldn’t. I’m firmly in the couldn’t (can’t/won’t?) camp and it intrigued me to hear that one woman was able to read whole books on the screen of her phone! I’m still thinking about that, in a gee-whiz, shake-of-the-head kind of way. While I can manage to read a lot of things on the phone or screen, a book on screen is simply a no-go-zone.
Holding a book in my hands, I feel the texture of the paper: the silk, the grit. Sitting up late underneath lamplight, the scrape of a turning page rings out in the silence of the night. The solidity, the essence of a real book is difficult to replace. You can lose yourself in a book in a way that you can’t within the confines of a screen, with all its flashy backlighting, unnatural curves and myriad distractions.
After much deliberation (and typing of hashtags into instagram to find one that is completely fresh and available) I have decided to launch the #booksinourhands hashtag. A collaboration with you, friends, where we can share what we are reading. A place to share thoughts, contributions and ideas. I LOVE seeing what others are reading. I don’t care if you’re reading nothing but cookbooks or holiday fiction or podiatry handbooks. Political memoirs, short stories, self-help or travel. I might have to draw the line at sports biographies though. But I’ll try to be open minded.
Let’s see where it goes. Perhaps it will just be me, waving books around against my kitchen wall, nerding out all alone. So be it.
Tell me, what are book are you carrying around at the moment? Is it luring you onto the couch at any opportunity, or are you searching for something better? Use the hashtag #booksinourhands over on instagram to tell us all about it.
(squints eyes, grits teeth, presses publish)