COLUMBIA - There's a new chapter being written when it comes to the way we read books. Last week, the Association of American Publishers announced that in January, monthly ebook sales overtook hardcovers for the first time. Amazon, the industry leader, already sells three times as many Kindles as hardcovers. But overall, paperbacks are currently still in the lead.
With the second largest bookstore chain in the country, Borders, filing for bankruptcy, many blame ereaders as the reason. When it comes to this recent trend, the Daniel Boone Regional Library system refused to be left behind. It added ebooks to its collection in January and offered classes on how to check out the ebooks online. Brandy Sanchez, the regional services librarian, says the library had many people asking about ebooks. "About nine months prior to that we had already begun to see that this trend was growing among libraries as well as library users," said Sanchez.
The latest federal statistics show there are only 10,600 places left to buy books in America. Those numbers are from 2007, the same year ereaders were introduced.
But Mid-Missourians have different opinions on how they'd like to read their favorite book. Cheryl Miller, a small bookstore customer for 10 years, says she can't imagine herself pressing a screen instead of turning a page. "The tactile feel of books, going back to see something," said Miller. Chris Criswell is an avid reader, and she now owns an ereader. "You gotta love the fact that you can have 1500 books on this," said Criswell.
Ereaders cost around 200 to 300 dollars. The Daniel Boone Regional Library system says they have over 900 ebooks available in their checkout program.