The Texture of Reading

No, this isn’t a rant about the superiority of real books over e-books. This is just some observations about the complicated texture of different books.

All books can’t be read the same. I don’t know why. I mean the actual mechanics of reading, of the page.

Some books, the individual pages don’t matter at all. They just blur together, and when you think back it’s just one ur-page, a prototype page. Other books, the individual pages have memories. There’s a picture on one side, or an odd thing with the chapter start, or a repeated line. I remember some of the pages in “Life After Life” very distinctly, the various dead-ends and the beginnings, repeating over and over on those pages.

I read with a tracker. It increases my speed to have a bookmark or a pen below the words. My eyes move faster with some help.

But some books have to be read with a pen. Others need a certain type of bookmark, a certain color that complements the cream shade of the page, or the color scheme of the cover.

And the book I’m reading now, like a few others I’ve read, just can’t be read with a tracker. It’s a freestyle book. I need to just see the page, or I can’t really savor the sentence.

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