When I was five, we had a post office in our small town of Knightsen that had a back room for the local Garden Club meetings. It also had about two shelves of books owned by the county. We could check them out with our signature, and there was a card in a pocket to show who had checked out what. I learned to read before I went to school, thanks to the meetings that I went to with my mom, and the lower shelf filled with picture books for kids.
Recently I finished a historical novel running 825 pages, that seems to be one in a very long series running for twenty years. It looks like there will be a sequal too, as the characters mature and have their own children. Since it involves time travel, medicine, American and European history, the scope is grand enough to keep us interested. This latest tome seems to have a lot of sex in it, and I would have preferred to have more 17th Century medicine explained. I already know that the couples featured in the series are hot for each other, and there is a lot of gay action too, so something that surprises me is always welcome.
There has been a discussion about what constitutes good literature, and reviewers kind of argue about one of the best selling books. We will not know if any contemporary book stands the test of time untill the time has elapsed.
One book that has stood up to scrutiny about whether or not it is great literature is Les Miserables.
I had it loaded on my iPad, or it can be a Nook, and it included all the French poetry, footnotes, and Latin quotations. The cherry picking of this plot for purposes of bringing it to the masses on Broadway does not do it justice. With the digital format, I could enlarge the type font, and this made for easier reading. if I had a dead tree book of this title that was in large type, I would have to engage a wheel barrow to lug it around.
Going back to the subject of print on paper or digital formats, if I read an older classic in paperback form on public transportation, no one is tempted to grab it out of my hands and depart the train just before the doors close.
It is also very cheap to browse the used book stores, and library book sales for classics, and build a decent home library of paperbacks.
Some books are only to be found on the digital formats, so word of mouth provides the info, and downloading a short book for under $5.00 is not too painful.
This publishing site is also very reasonable, and if I were to keep writing for the next 15 years, my costs of publishing and your costs as reader would be minimal. Page by page, I am being publushed for my grandchildren to enjoy. Or not.