When everyone started talking about eBooks, my official position was that I was anti-ebook. Why would I want to read a book on a computer or a reader? I loooove books. I love holding them and looking at them and whenever I read something that really gets to me, I like dog-earring the corner of the page (Actually, some people think that by doing this I actually hate books. Andrew cringes whenever he sees me folding over a page, but I’m not the kind of person who writes in my books and I never have stickies around when I’m reading. So I dog-ear.)
Then a few things happened that changed my mind. First, I got an iPhone, and downloaded the Classics app so that I could read sections from Robinson Crusoe or Alice in Wonderland while stuck on the metro without a book. I liked that. Then I went to Greece, and while I was away a few books came out in North America that I couldn’t find in bookstores in Athens. I wanted to read Emily Gould’s And the Heart Says Whatever and Vendela Vida’s The Lovers. So I downloaded the Kindle app, bought the electronic versions and read them. I wasn’t bothered by the teeny iPhone screen too much and, most importantly, I was able to read the books. The other reason my opinion changed is DUH, I can adapt! And so can you! Things change, especially technology. Roll with it. Since then I buy maybe 1 eBook a month. I like always having something new to read on my phone, especially essay collections (like, Best 2010 Food Writing or some Jonathan Ames). And I still obviously like books; this is the floor by my bed right now:
THIS IS ALL TO SAY. Bats or Swallows is now available as an eBook at the Kobo store for the amazing price of $4.69. The physical book is beautiful and special, but I think the stories work really well in eBook format. They’re the right length and you can read them while you’re delayed on a bus, easy. Also, you don’t need a Kobo reader to get the book. If you have an iPhone or another type of smartphone, you can download the Kobo app for free, and from there you can browse books and purchase them.
When it went live this morning, the first 10 people to buy the book also got limited edition Gelaskin protective skins for their Kobo readers (pictures here). I wanted to tell you about the contest too, but those first 10 copies went fast. If you won, congratulations!