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Posts Tagged ‘Libraries’

Being a child of the ’80s, I face a daily battle to suppress my innate love of the Diana Spencer-style bouffant (of hair and clothing), synth pop and cheesy workout videos. My only places of refuge from the otherwise relentless temptation to buy a ticket for the Spandau Ballet reunion tour are the midst of library queues and the dark depths of second-hand book shops, where the term ‘slouch sock’ could only refer to the dust cover of a hardback that got left out in the rain. In these blessed sanctuaries, the 1980s never happened. Or so I thought…

Terrifying. But brilliant.

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LibraryWartime

My addiction to the musty whiff of a well-loved book and the hiss of a turning page means that I detest – de-test – being sensually swindled by having to read more than about 250 words through a screen. If you’re anything like me, you’ll share my horror at this downright catastrophe:

 

The iLiad: The literary equivalent of a microwave burger

The iLiad: The microwave burger of the book world

50 pre-programmed ‘books’, A5(ish) format, at £399 – behold the (*ahem*) iLiad Electronic Reader. So many questions: can I get it in paperback? Can I offer it up for BookCrossing? When I’m shipwrecked on a desert island, can I read/build a fire with/eat my 50 books? These, of course, are the everyday concerns of your average dog-earing culprit. And the answer to each is a pixelated NO. What a letdown. And it appears that the customers of Borders feel the same, according to The Independent.

Round 1 to the paper pushers, then. Round 2 – the struggle to save the nation’s libraries, as reported in The Guardian – is currently being hard-fought in the modern-day trenches that masquerade as library isles and local government corridors, most publicly by journalist Rachel Cooke, who wrote a great article for yesterday’s Observer. A damn good read, even if it does clock in on the wrong side of 250 words for my screenphobic peepers to contend with. Best get practising my library card quick-draw, then…

(Word count: 234. Phew)

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