With world classics available free on the Internet and e-books becoming the new phenomenon, are books on their way out? HT City asked some Delhi University students how they prefer to read their favourite subjects.
“For each topic we have to refer four-five books. It is impossible to buy books or get them issued from the library all the time. So I prefer downloading them from the internet and reading at leisure,” says Esha Kumar, a third year student of History Honours of Lady Sri Ram College. “I have not borrowed a single book from my college library in the past three years,” she adds.
“I prefer e-books as they save money and time of actually going to buy a book. I’ve read books by Agatha Christie, Elizabeth Jeffery and Paulo Coelho, all on the Internet,” says Anamika Singh from Hindu College, who is busy reading the e-version of the popular novel
P.S.I Love You
Not everyone is upbeat about reading books on the computer screen, though. “Reading on computer is too strenous for my eyes. I prefer to relax on my bed and read,” says Nancy Pande, who has just finished Dan Brown’s recent release
The Lost Symbol
“I do read a classic for free on the net, but it’s a one-off thing. I prefer the feel of a book in my hand while reading, even if it is borrowed,” says Ruchika Gupta from Jesus and Mary’s College.
Agrees Anshula Chaudhary from the same college. “Reading is very intimate. I have read all my classics, be it Ayn Rand or Jane Austen on paper.”
For some e-books are an alternative to the old exam guide and they turn to them only during exams. “This website called
offers simplified versions of the course books in all subjects,” says Kartika Singh of Lady Sri Ram College.
R.Nithya from Kalindi College sums up the debate. “I definitely like to read a couple of chapters online to know about a book, before I decide to go out and buy its hard copy,” she says.