Nothing beats feeling of holding a book, say SIBF visitors
November 07, 2021 / 1:31 PM
Sharjah24 : The milestone 40th edition of Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF) has already welcomed thousands in its first few days – people from all age groups and nationalities have thronged to the fair to grab copies of the titles they want and discover new favourites from amongst the 15 million-plus books displayed under the SIBF roof this year.
With shopping carts packed with books, some bibliophiles can’t get enough book retail therapy. When asked whether they would replace the traditional book with its modern e-avatar, most responded saying they still prefer to get into bed with an actual book rather than its digital cousin. While some others are happy converts and have come to the book fair in search of their next lot of eBooks.
Sharjah resident, Abdulla Alyafei, for instance said he shifted to reading digital books for the sheer convenience the format offers, especially while travelling. The avid reader, who carries his tablet on his work commute to Dubai every day, however confessed that if asked to choose between the two formats, he’d never substitute a real book with its digital version. “Real books create an entirely different reading experience. Moreover, I like to collect books so that I can read them later,” he added.
For 13-year-old Shreya who is a big fan of J.K Rowling, “the real book is better as it’s not just the story and its characters, but the book itself which is iconic, memorable and a must-have, especially when it comes to the Harry Potter series.”
It is the hassle of charging batteries and maintaining a technology gadget that is a put-off for 14-year-old Imran Mn, who exclaims, “you never have to worry about a physical book run out of charge!” Imran’s favourites are the Agatha Christie paperbacks.
Emirati Marwa Al Hammadi says she is unable to grasp the sheer literary extravagance on offer at SIBF 2021. “This book fair has everything I am looking for,” she said adding I learn so much just by reading the blurbs on the books.” Marwa’s vote is for the physical book too, and she explains why. “A reading experience is incomplete till you hold a book in your hand.”
While this never-ending debate continues, make sure to go grab your and your family’s stock of reading materials until SIBF comes back with even more variety next year. As the theme of this edition asserts, ‘There’s always a right book’, the right one for you awaits.