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Yikes:, one of the nation’s largest booksellers, announced Monday that for the last three months, sales of books for its e-reader, the Kindle, outnumbered sales of hardcover books.

In that time, Amazon said, it sold 143 Kindle books for every 100 hardcover books, including hardcovers for which there is no Kindle edition.

The pace of change is quickening, too, Amazon said. In the last four weeks sales rose to 180 digital books for every 100 hardcover copies. Amazon has 630,000 Kindle books, a small fraction of the millions of books sold on the site.

Book lovers mourning the demise of hardcover books with their heft and their musty smell need a reality check, said Mike Shatzkin, founder and chief executive of the Idea Logical Company, which advises book publishers on digital change. “This was a day that was going to come, a day that had to come,” he said. He predicts that within a decade, fewer than 25 percent of all books sold will be print versions.

I simply cannot ever see myself switching to an electronic reader.  It may be backward, curmudgeonly, Counter-Reformationist, irrational and illogical of me (something new and different, I know), but they can have my paper and ink library when they pry it out of my cold, dead fingers.  (In fact, I was so put out by the article that I nipped over to the devil’s website and bought a real copy of Willa Cather’s Death Comes for the Archbishop, which the Mothe has been encouraging me to give a try for some time now.)

Speaking also of such things, the Mothe has been putting together a literary quiz for the members of her book club (aided just a little bit by Self) on the subject of Famous Literary Dogs.  Show of hands for those who’d like me to try and get hold of a copy and post it here?

Sistah’s (most recent) labelling of me as a doofus with weird thoughts has set this sketch playing inside my head again:

Oi em not a looney! Seriously!

My apologies for the relatively scant posting of late, but the wind has seemingly gone completely out of poor old Robbo’s mental sails, leaving his creativity and insight languishing and his head threatening to roll itself by the board on the swell.

In the meantime, I don’t suppose it’s any use to complain about the heat and humidity because it’s like this in many places, but………Jesum Crow am I tired of it.  It isn’t that it’s got hot this year, but rayther that it’s got hot and stayed hot.  I simply can’t remember the last time the temperature didn’t crack 90 (except when it rained).

So in addition to the chronic heat exhaustion I’ve been suffering off and on for about six weeks now, I realized this morning that what I had taken to be an outbreak of gnat bites in various parts of the person are, in fact, miliaria rubra, or what the docs would call prickly heat.

Sigh.  It’s always about this time of year that I rue not having air-conditioning in the ol’ jeep.

I know, I know.  “Stiff upper lip,” and all that.  And in fact, we leave town a week from Friday, heading to Maine for our annual summah hols, so hopefully I’ll be able to hold out until then, gaining refreshment and inspiration from a week of serious porch lounging.  In the meantime, I do hope you’ll understand if I seem more scatterbrained and disjointed than usual.


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July 2010