mardi 1 mars 2011

Using the Library

I've never been a big library user.

No, that's not true -- in grade school and high school I was always at the library and read almost all of the books available in their fiction collections. And I obviously used my university library for research.

What I mean is that I've never used the public library very much to borrow books I read for pleasure. I know I should take full advantage of it -- it's free, after all -- but I don't like being "forced" to finish books in a set time frame. I always have several books on the go. And sometimes, if I'm just not into a particular book, it'll sit, unread, for several weeks at a time, until I pick it up again. Which is why I've often paid late fees when I have tried to use the public library...

But the other day, I found out the other day that you can borrow e-books from the Ottawa Public Library. And the BEST part is that you don't have to return them - they simply "expire". No more late fees! I don't have to worry about the deadline -- if I don't finish the book within three weeks, I can always just borrow it again another time. You can download e-books directly from the OPL website, you don't even have to actually visit the library. (Not that I don't like visiting the library, but it just makes it that much more convenient.)

I think if I got an e-book reader I would be able to take full advantage of the library for reading the sort of book that I don't necessarily want to own, i.e. mysteries and other fiction novels. The type of book that I know I probably won't want to read again.

As much as I enjoy the feeling of a real book in my hands, I really think e-book readers do have some use, and I think I would enjoy reading on one. It would be handy for travelling, that's for sure. And it would save money in the long run, as I would buy fewer new books.

The Sony Touch model (which is the one I would probably go for, as it supports the most formats) costs $250 (or $200 for the "pocket"-sized model).

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