Posted by: theresegilardi | June 8, 2011

Why I Love Paperbacks

I know, I know, paperbacks are an environmental nightmare. But that’s only if you dispose of them, which I don’t. Some women won’t part with shoes. Others, with what my mother always calls her “Jackie Gleason” wardrobe, a collection of dresses and pantsuits she hasn’t worn since Jackie was on television. For me, my paperbacks are the one collection of which I know I will never rid myself. Lots of people scrapbook, or keep photo albums or videos lying around to remind themselves of times past. I keep my books, from “Winnie the Pooh” to the latest Kinsey Milhone mystery.

My past, present, and future are written in paperback. The books without covers hearken back to the days when my oldest child was a baby and liked nothing more than to pretend he was “reading” as he ripped the covers from their pages. My French dictionaries and grammar books recall my years in France. My shelves bulge with reminders of my dalliances with Irish fiction, confessional poetry, teaching myself to speak Italian. My books, stacked high atop my bedside table, are the first thing I see in the morning and the last vision I have each  night. I keep copies of my novel and every anthology  my work has appeared in facing outward in my office. They’re my silent cheerleaders, my go-to guys whenever I waver and doubt about where I’m going or where I’ve been.

I know that e-readers are the wave of the future. I’ve even got several books downloaded onto my  computer, and my husband owns a Nook. But you can’t look around your office and see the contents of your e-reader. That’s why I’m an old-fashioned girl at heart in the book buying department. Paperbacks – they’re the wallpaper of my life.

What do your books say about you?



  1. I agree wholeheartedly! I am a physical book lover myself – paperback or hardcover – and I don’t throw mine out either, so agree that it’s hardly an ecological nightmare, especially given that we live in a “disposable everything” world! I am suspecting I’m going to have to give in and get a kindle or some other e-reader, for the convenience factor while traveling and especially because I do book reviews and a lot of stuff is only/primarily/preferentially provided electronically now – and I am not very happy about it at all… Thanks for helping to defend the rights of the paperback!! 🙂

  2. hello fellow book lover! it is so great to know that i’m not the only one who considers paperbacks and their parents (hardcovers) small works of art. that’s a very interesting point you make about our disposable society. thanks so much for stopping by!

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