We have been discussing what to do with books for some time. We have less than I once owned, and more than he had when I moved into his house. Which means it is more than we want to move (again) but less than we’d like to have at our fingertips if we’re researching something.
On the other hand… both of us read much more if we have the title available in ebook. Paper is awkward to carry and whip out while standing in line, during a lunch break (ok, not so much, but it’s still easier to read on a smartphone then). We have many titles to choose from if the one we’re reading isn’t working for us. Or we finish one book and want another. It’s easier to search, to bookmark, and to highlight, in an ebook.
The modern world encroacheth. But it’s not the end of reading. In fact, it’s the birth and renewal of reading for us, in many ways.
Which led to some conversations about books. And the ownership of books, and what to do with our own tsunduko. We agreed that we own a lot of fiction that could be thinned, either because we had it in ebook and didn’t value it enough to have duplicates, or simply that we weren’t going to re-read/read that particular title. Non-fiction, research materials, books that will be used in the homeschool, those needed to stay.
And my antiques. I’ve been collecting antique books since I was a little girl, and I love the old books, with their brittle paper, their beautiful gold inlaid titles and decorations, and their artifacts of long-dead owners before me. Now, I’m less likely to ever read these, since many are in public domain and available as free ebooks. But I do regard them as my favorite sort of home decor. I’m not a big collector of tchotchkes, but books? Books like these I will collect, and display, and when we’re in a forever home, we’ll have softly lit glass-fronted bookcases for them. Because I am a bibliophile, and he humors me.