eBooks are a very 50/50 subject. Some people love them and won't go anywhere without a Kindle, others despise them and don't see the appeal. I fall into the second category. I don't like them. But I am a collector of books, I want them on my shelf as a trophy, a reminder of the stories I've been through. Being around books makes me happy regardless of whether I have read them or not. I get my own, personal library, full of books I have read and loved, read and put down half way through, have yet to pick up but am excited for. These books tell more than just the story written down on the pages - they tell the story of me, the reader. But look at a Kindle and what do you see? A piece of technology with hundreds and hundreds of books there just because they were free or on the 99p deal. Where's the fun in that?
So my problem with eBooks isn't actually to do with the books themselves, but rather the lack of physical being. So what about books that are self publishes, or novellas/short stories that are only available for e-readers? If my only concern about paying money for a digital story was that it couldn't be on my physical shelf, well then, I would have no problem grabbing all the kindle only books. But it's not. I have -11 eyesight. For those of you who don't know what that means, it means without my glasses I can only see a book when it's quite literally touching my nose, in other words, I'm not too far off being legally blind. Whilst glasses correct my vision, they don't correct how shitty my eyes are and they definitely do not make reading a screen any easier: I get horrendous migraines. Not just a horrible a headache, it starts with an aura on my vision. A little dot, sort of like a flash from a camera mixed with static on a TV which spreads and spreads and spreads until I can't read as it blocks my sight and eventually I feel blind and sick and dizzy and the only way to get rid of it is a lot of codeine and sleep.
Writing blog posts takes me forever as the black on white hurts my eyes if I stare too long and I have to take breaks in order to prevent the migraine coming on. Which sucks when there are so many self published and other ebooks out there that I can only read through iBooks on my phone. It sucks even more when authors contact me and ask me to read and review their book but it's digital format only so I can never get round to finishing it - this is why my review policy states I do not accept eBooks in exchange for a review but rather a mention in a blog post in some way or another. Because the likely hood is, I'm unable to enjoy the book because I'm so busy stopping after every page so I don't get sick.
So far this year, I have only accepted two eBooks, and because of all the craziness of the last few months, I haven't had the chance to talk about them, but I'm going to do so right now. Just because I can't enjoy them entirely doesn't mean I can't share them with you. (Plus, you know for me to accept an eBook I have to have good vibes!)
First of all, many many moons ago, Dallas Coryell contacted me about his novel 'Melody's Key' which I read about 100 pages of but it was around the time my migraines were flaring up regardless of screens and I had also just finished another book which had a similar feel to it so all together it just wasn't the right time. I have, however, spent a lot of time wondering where the book is going to go (I have some ideas!) and it's one I would like to continue with.
More recently I was contacted by the lovely Jon Del Arroz and couldn't resist his pitch for his book 'For Steam and Country'! I mean, YA Steampunk? YES PLEASE! I got a good bit into this before the chaos with my gran and I've just not been in the mood to read on my phone lately! *sigh* ONE DAY, perhaps we'll get a Paperback!
If any of you have read either of these please do let me know your thoughts and help me get excited to read them - or if anyone knows how to change the background to black with white writing on iBooks or a PDF then PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE tell me so I can get back to reading these books asap!!