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09/30/13

Not A Real Page Turner: Can Boring Books Rebound Against Electronic Reading?

Sitting and staring at a bin full of discount paperback or hardback books isn't out of the ordinary. The alarming part is that bin was located within a discount, wholesale retail store that doubled as a grocery chain.
Books have been on what one would call a bit of a down slide for quite some time as technology such as e-Readers and other tempting tablets have supplanted the lost art of sitting down and reading a book; yes, an actual one with real paper pages and that thing called a binding.
What truly is in a bind are retail moguls such as Barnes & Noble or other traditional bookstores that are hoping that the coffee bar generates enough interest to keep these places flourishing, not fledgling. The chic, comfortable seating areas and iced tea drinks aside, bookstores started becoming passé right around the time "You've Got Mail" hit the movie theater.
Tom Hanks' character Joe Fox killed Meg Ryan's cute, corner bookstore with his massive chain. If Fox's Books still existed today, it likely would be hunted down and on the brink of boarding up the doors, too.
Despite their hard bindings against the wall, do books have any hope at all as far as staying relevant? The answer seems to be quite simply: "no." Books take up space, and apparently the persons responsible for pricing them still haven't got the message that they're a dying breed. Hard-copy books are much more expensive than the ones that can be purchased electronically.

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Those who love to read and are diehard traditionalists in terms of collecting and salivating over their ample book collection still find themselves drawn in by the convenience of the electronic book. A long flight or equally daunting car ride is conducive to a Kindle or an iPad as far as being able to lug around dozens of books within one device. That sure beats the alternative to packing an obese suitcase filled with books.
Even Barnes & Noble has seemingly raised the white flag with its simple touch Nook. Kindle throws a little more salt on the wound of the paperback population with the simple e-Reader for less than $70. It holds up incredibly well, is simple to use and is made to combat sunlight so glare is gone for good.
Also on its way out are the miles upon miles of books that line the shelves of bookstores, collecting dust, while the bulk of the consumers who frequent these archaic stores congregate in droves more for the pastries than the paperbacks.

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