When I was in New York at the end of May for the BEA convention, I picked up a couple of items that I use for reading. It made me think of things that come in to play when I read, things that make the experience of reading even more enjoyable than it already is.
Many readers have their own way of reading: they take the dust jackets off hardcovers, they have a favourite chair to sit in, they only read before bedtime, etc. Well mine are reflected by my book gadgets. Here are a few of my favourites - and some I thought I would like but don't so much:
In the above photo there is a 'book peeramid', a book light, a bookmark, two different types of book covers, an ipod, earphones and a tote.
I got the tote when I bought a Taschen book at my local indie bookstore. I was asked if I wanted a bag for the book, said yes and they gave me this nice tote. I was expecting the usual plastic so that was really nice. I have a lot of book totes - a couple I picked up at BEA, another I bought at The Strand, and the rest I got closer to home.
I got the book peeramid while on a visit last year to Niagara Falls. I saw it in a tourist shop and couldn't resist it - even though I thought at the time it would be one of those things I would never use. But that turned out not to be the case - happily I do use it a lot. It's much more comfortable if you're sitting back on a sofa and using it to prop up a book.
I bought the book light at The Strand bookstore in NYC. This is something that I thought would come in handy but it really doesn't. It's awkward and I have to be sitting at a desk to read to use it. Not a great choice for a gadget but it was less than $4 so it was not a big investment.
The bookmark, called xmarkit, is really fun. I got that at the BEA convention. I was given a demo on how to use it but really didn't need one, it's so easy. You just place the 'X' with the circle pointing at the spot where you just left off reading and when you pick up your book again the book naturally falls to the page where the mark is and you know where you left off.
The last two items are the book covers. One type is for hardcovers and the other is for paperbacks. I'm a bit particular about my books - I prefer that they stay in good condition if possible so I cover them. Not all of them, but many of my hardcovers are covered with Brodart jacket covers which are usually seen in libraries and the homes of wanna-be librarians such as myself. The photos show a dust jacket being covered.
The paperback covers are re-usable. They have a sticky part which can be un-peeled and re-stuck if I decide I no longer want to protect a particular book. All you have to do is fit the book's front cover into one side of the clear plastic protector, separate the plastic along the seam, fit the back cover into the separated section and press the sticky part down onto your book. The book itself isn't touched by glue or tape. It's great!
I use the iPod and earphones for talking books. The iPod was a gift from my husband and I picked up the bright orange earphones at a booth at BEA. I have downloaded a couple of novels to my iPod and have listened to them at work (I can do that with my job).
There are plenty of gadgets missing in my list (the most obvious perhaps is an e-reader?) but these are just some of the book gadgets that I use. Right now I can't think of anything I'd like to have and don't own. What kind of book gadgets do you use?
You Can't Judge A Book By Its Cover #151
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