Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Hardcover or Paperback: My Elitism....

Maybe because I am an aspiring book collector (even though my financial means prohibit this severely) , or maybe it is because I prefer the heft of a hardcover book in my hands, I prefer hardcover novels to their lighter more manageable siblings the paperback. Although for someone who tends to carry their books around with them one would suspect that I am prone to paperbacks just for their sheer portability, but that is a negative. I own many paperback books and look at them in dismay longing for leather bound (yes... leather bound.. sorry I can only take my tree hugging bunny loving non animal cruelty self so far) hardcover editions. God forbid anything happen to any of my hardcover books, I would probably have an aneurysm, a coronary, and a small personal apocalypse if I ever lost one of these precious volumes and the memories associated with them.

Granted none of these books are probably collectors items, no real worth other than the price on their book jacket. But they each hold some form of memory. There is only one paperback, that was in my collection, that holds such a similar sway over my memory. The piece is no longer part of my collection, as I had gifted it to someone who meant..means... quiet a lot...(excuse me for saying this with some sort of sadness or apprehension.. this individual has currently removed themselves from my life......I'm digressing.) As cliche as it might sound the one book that held so much meaning and was read till it was falling to pieces and bound together with tape, was a brown covered tattered copy of JD Salinger's Catcher In The Rye. ( One might ask why I would part with such an important part of my collection... to this I will only answer.. that is between me and it's new owner who I don't know if he will ever read it or not, but it is with someone who I believe knows it's personal value to me.)

Except for my Salinger paperbacks, most of my paperback purchases these day are only books that only partially spark my interest, maybe something about their story has piqued my curiosity but not drawn me in enough to want to make it something that is a part of my personal collection. One such paperback that I can recall is The Road-Cormac McCarthy, this book, although praised so highly by many was pure drudgery to get through. It was far easier to get through The Spy Who Came In From The Cold, but still, it fell under quick classification of books I simply did not like. Those who know me know I do love my fair share of dystopian and apocalyptic tales but that book will not become permanent collection and has been relegated to paperback land.. a desolate shelf near the desk, holding books that may find themselves quickly loaned out or given away.

I am not sure why I prefer hardcover books to paperbacks, it's most likely because they look better on the bookshelf, maybe it is nothing more than aesthetics, maybe it's something more.. durability...endurance (shakes head).. no.. that is not the word... the give me.. something that seems far more tactile and persevering to leave behind than paperbacks....

-This has been another wonderful ramble of jumbled thoughts from the GeekyBookGirl Herself--

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