JUST like the death of novelist Mark Twain, reports of the demise of books in print have been greatly exaggerated. While electronic books enjoy steady progress, book stores and publishers are reporting a rise in the sale of the real thing.
As our report today shows, the book is not like the long-playing record, which has become a niche market for nerds and sound purists. Printed books are mainstream and, despite the advance in online and electronic communications, most people prefer to read their favourite author in print.
The sale of printed books in Ireland alone has increased by 12% since last year, and this appears to be part of a global phenomenon.
It may be that many of us spend so much time working on computers that reading an e-book for leisure has lost its appeal.
It may also be that we read with more than our eyes. Printed books are subject to touch, smell and, perhaps, even taste, so reading them is a tactile experience.
Whatever the reason, the printed word is here to stay.
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