Traditional Books and Electronic Reading

When I pack for a long trip there comes a point where I have to decide: what book do I want to read on the road? I am sure most of us have dealt with this crucial decision at some point of our lives. You know how it is, if I make the wrong reading choice, I'm stuck counting down the minutes until I can stretch my legs and get out of the car or hop off that airplane.

This summer I'm planning on doing lots of traveling and looking forward to some excellent reading time. In order to keep my packing light and have room for souvenirs, I have chosen to take a hand-me-down Kindle.

My reasoning for this over a traditional book is as follows:
  • It's easier to keep track of one Kindle rather than multiple books.
  • The Kindle will keep an electronic bookmark so I don't have to worry about a bookmark getting lost in my suitcase and losing my page entirely.
  • It is much lighter and easier to carry.
  • It has many books in one place.
  • I can switch between books easily.
There are lots of wonderful things with the Kindle, but there are also cons that just can't simply replace a traditional book:
  • It will need to be charged frequently and may run out of battery life (at inconvenient times too!).
  • It loses the classic appeal to reading.
  • It's easier to find right where I left off than on a Kindle.
  • It is harder to write comments down.
  • It's more difficult to get a new book to read on the Kindle (internet connection vs. a bookstore).
  • An old book won't be as big of a deal to break, lose, or have stolen.
I believe that a traditional book and a Kindle both have their time and place where they are just simply better than the other, but what do you think? Do you think there really is nothing like a real book or do you think electronic reading is the new way to read?

Do you prefer reading on a Kindle or do you prefer a good old fashion book?

Also, what books do you think I should take for the road? I would love to hear your suggestions.


Love Stories: Ella Enchanted and The Little Girl Inside Me

As Valentines approaches I have reflected on love stories I read in the past. Though great reads immediately come to my mind like Pride and Prejudice, anything Nicholas Sparks, and Gone with the Wind, my personal favorite is Ella Enchanted. Laugh if you will that the story I love involves fairies, giants and elves, but it’s a story that I cherish.

Growing up, I had a similar upbringing to Ella's (the only difference being that I didn’t live in a fairy tale world) and I felt so drawn to her. She was independent, confident, and beautiful. This was everything my little-girl heart desired to be. Even though she was cursed to follow every command given, because she sacrificed the love of her life, Ella not only saved her love but also freed herself from the spell she was bound to.

The story concludes with Ella marrying the prince and living happily ever after. Every time I finish the book I dream of my own fairy tale ending where a handsome man whisks me off my feet and makes me his princess. However I realize that, like Ella, I too have to face challenges placed in my life if I am to achieve happiness like her. I think that’s why to this day my favorite love story is Ella Enchanted because it makes me appreciate love for more than just chocolates and roses, yet it lets me hold on to the little girl inside of me.

The BYU Bookstore currently has Ella Enchanted in stock for $6.99 in the Childrens Section located in the BYU Bookstore's basement. Happy Valentines Day!

Charles Dickens 200th Birthday!

Charles Dickens 200th birthday was today. To commemorate, Bryn Clegg, a senior at BYU studying English, wrote a guest post for Y-Read.

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.” This is perhaps Charles Dickens’s most famous line, and also one of his most relatable. Who hasn’t felt that a year, a day, a moment of their lives carried all the extremes of emotion? But that isn’t what makes Dickens memorable; in his long list of emotions, he captures what it means to be human, both in the Victorian age and in our own.

Charles John Huffman Dickens was born on February 7, 1812. He would become the most successful author of the Victorian period, publishing his works in monthly installments. This meant that Dickens built cliffhangers into his work – much like television writers do today. However, out of these serialized novels come some of our most iconic figures: Ebenezer Scrooge, Pip, Samuel Pickwick, and my personal favorite, Miss Havisham, the elderly woman left eternally in empty mansion and the tattered remains of her wedding dress. These figures never die; they are kept alive by a new readership (for his books have never gone out of print), media references, and tradition.

But what is a Dickens novel actually like? It might take a little patience to read one of his novels, for his sentences are long and his descriptions detailed. After all, Dickens could never have stopped at simply saying “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times,” when he could list every adjective possible to describe said times. However, in the end, Dickens often achieved what only the most patient reader will uncover: he captured a shade of humanity.

Bryn Clegg, age 20 from Portland area, Oregon, is studying English at BYU and has been an active reader of great literary works since a young age, she likes to run long distances and eat dark chocolate, when she isn't studying or working she also writes poetry in her free time.

Find Charles Dickens' books in the BYU Bookstore on our shelves in the Fiction section as well as in Collector's items, or you can purchase A Christmas Carol for $1.00 (Plus shipping and handling) online at

Newbery and Caldecott Results

The Newbery and Caldecott Awards are THE most prestigious children’s book awards in the United States.  The Caldecott award is awarded to the artist of the most distinguished picture book published in the U.S.  The Newbery Medal is awarded to the author of the most distinguished contribution to literature for children.

This year’s Newbery Medal winner is:

Dead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos
Honor books:

Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai

Breaking Stalin's Nose by Eugene Yelchin

The exciting news for us is that JACK GANTOS WILL BE HERE IN JULY!!!  He accepted an invitation to be one of the Books For Young Readers Symposium guests well before the Newbery Award.  If you are interested in attending that Symposium, contact BYU’s Conferences and Workshops.  It is such a fun event for book lovers (more in a future post).

For now I must confess that no, I did not predict even one of the Newbery books. I did suspect Dead End in Norvelt.  The others I can’t wait to read.

This year’s Caldecott Medal winner is:

A Ball for Daisy by Chris Raschka 
(OK, I admit it, I had heard a lot of buzz & hoped this would NOT win)

Honor books

Blackout by John Rocco (Love it!)

Grandpa Green by Lane Smith (expected this one)

Me . . . Jane BY Patrick McDonnell (saw this one coming)

Please convince me that A Ball for Daisy is a deserving medal winner.  I want to be a believer.  Look at it side by side with Sea of Dreams by Dennis Nolan or Never Forgotten by Patricia C. McKissack artwork by Leo & Diane Dillon and re-convince me.

Are you happy with this year’s winners?

 Me....Jane, Blackout, and Grandpa Green are currently in stock in the BYU Bookstore.