How to read

In a chair, with a tea or a coffee,  on the sofa in the angle of a ray of sunshine, if possible, straight on a straight chair or before falling asleep. Never in the bath, rarely at the beach. Reading.

But also getting  books, a gesture whose meaning varies, according to where I get them.

The charity shop: I found only one book I wanted to read in the six charity shops I visited in Tenby. Most of the books found there (since Tenby is a vacation spot), are light books, detective novels (I prefer to see them on TV, I have too much imagination to read sinister detective stories Before going to bed), mostly in multiple copies. Ecological and cheap, not so good for authors (alive). It needs space (or I bring it back to the charity shop).
The second-hand (pre-loved) book shop: Tenby’s store is more of the compulsive collector’s hangar than of the trade. Its owner opens when he wants. It is therefore necessary to pass and return in front of the small house in the hope of seeing light. Entering it requires a certain amount of courage: books, pictures and postcards are stacked in a joyful capharnaum (but those who know him say he knows where everything is). The owner welcomes me with a certain mistrust, but when I choose Cervantes as bedside book, he tells me that it is a good choice (I passed the test but I do not advise for those who want to read Light). Always nice to find a good book, but obviously little news. In Nelson, there are fewer sharp writers. Ecological and cheap, not so good for authors (alive). Needs space (or I give it away).
Second hand (pre-loved) book fair: once a year, in Nelson. I bought a few books last year that I probably would not have bought in a bookstore, but it takes some courage to go among the messy book tables. Ecological and cheap, not so good for authors (alive). Need space (or I give it away).   
The library: a regular stop to see what’s new, but the Nelson system is done in such a way that you can wait months before you have access to a book. The library is not bad, but finally, not a very large library. Ecological and cheap, better for authors, does not need any space.
The bookstore: there are four bookstores in Nelson. Two are part of chains (Paper plus and Whitcoulls) and two are independent. I never bought a book at Whitcoulls or Paper Plus, I go to buy pens, greeting cards, sometimes the newspaper. There is no book that interests me. Independent bookstore, Page & Blackmore, is in the center of Nelson and once won the contest of the best independent bookstore in New Zealand, largely in my opinion, to the two excellent booksellers who left the bookstore when ‘It was sold last year. This bookstore unfortunately lost its lustre after their departure. For their part, the two booksellers opened another bookshop a little further on, in a less busy street, the bookshop Volume. The owners send out a weekly newsletter where they share their book reviews. They organize occasional literary events and reading groups for children. I hope that they can continue their activities for a long time and I will probably order my books in the future. But I am convinced they are having a hard time surviving as they are a bit out of the city center.Less ecological , more expensive, but contributes to the vitality of the city and both booksellers know their books. Better for the authors, but need space.
The e-book: it has some utility (for travel, for example ) but does not replace the hard copy  (I already mentioned elsewhere). It will allow me (once  I understand how to do it) to read more regularly in French, because bringing a book in NZ costs a fortune. Ecological, cheaper than the bookshop, better for authors and do not need physical space.
Different sources of supply, therefore, but pleasure (almost) always guaranteed and the need to weigh each and every time, the pros and cons of each of the decisions.


4 thoughts on “How to read”

  1. I am living in an apartment near mine that has more books than some libraries in small towns. It’s fabulous. I’m glad to be living in a time where reading material is so accessible. I do miss bookstores with knowledgable booksellers, though. The sort of place where they begin to know your taste and recommend new books…I read in the bath, though.

    Liked by 1 person

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