Today at Book Expo one of the galleys I got was Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman. However – it’s not a traditionally galley – it’s an e-book download.
I went ahead and downloaded it when I got home, and I have it open now. I almost started reading it. It’s just over 100 pages, so it wouldn’t be too bad to read at my computer. I’m so excited about the thought of another excellent children’s novel by Neil Gaiman – I really want to read it! It doesn’t come out until September!
But when I started reading page 1, I realized that I couldn’t commit yet. I really want to read this, and yet I feel like something’s missing. As early as page 1, I felt like I was getting a scaled down experience (and not because it’s a galley). I wanted the actual book in my hands. I want the tangible paper in my hands. I want to be able to stuff my nose into the spine and smell the new book smell if I want to. I want a cup of coffee in the other hand. I want to feel the paper between my fingers as I turn the pages. I want to read the book.
As cool and as fabulous as it would be to read it now, and not wait until September, I don’t know if I can do it. I’m really excited for this book, and I don’t want the experience to come up short because I read it on a screen.
I know this is an obnoxious dilemma to have, and I apologize for that. And I really do understand why publishers would use e-books for galleys – they give them away for free, and printing is expensive. I just need to decide whether I’ll bite the bullet and read this as an e-book (and if I do – I promise to post a review), or wait until I can buy a pretty copy in the store.
Previously posted: Why I won’t switch to digital books.
(This post was brought over from emilyw.vox.com. Click here for the original post and comments.)