JOPLIN, Mo. —
How many of you have read at least one e-book?
Pew Research Center has come out with a study that answers that question and a whole lot more. Had I guessed before I knew the answer to that question, I’d have been way low.
More than a fifth of American adults -- 21 percent -- reported that they read at least one e-book in the past year. A whole lot of them read many more.
The 2011 holidays led to the quick jump from 17 percent to 21, Pew reported. All those gifts of e-reading devices apparently proved irresistible.
The study reports that e-books are changing American culture from printed to digital material. About 43 percent of Americans 16 and older have either read an e-book in the past year or have read other long-form content such as magazines, journals and news articles in digital format on an e-book reader, tablet computer, regular computer or cell phone.
E-book readers “stand out in almost every way from other kinds of readers,” the report states. Foremost, they are relatively avid readers of books in all formats: 88 percent of those who read e-books in the past 12 months also read printed books.
Most of the findings in the report come from a survey of 2,986 Americans ages 16 and older. About 29 percent of Americans 18 and older own at least one specialized device for e-book reading, whether it’s a tablet or an e-book reader.
The average reader of e-books has read 24 books (the mean number) in the past 12 months, compared with an average of 15 books by a non-e-book consumer. Some 78 percent of those 16 and older report they have read an average of 17 books in the past year. Those reading the most books in the past year: more women than men; more whites than minorities; more senior citizens than youth.
Although e-book reading is markedly growing, printed books still dominate the world of book readers. In Pew’s December 2011 survey, they found that 72 percent of American adults had read a printed book, compared with the 17 per cent of adults who had read an e-book.
E-books have been on the horizon for years. I know, because I’ve owned two previous versions of readers before the advent of the Kindle. Both those early readers folded, leaving me adrift with readers and nothing to read on them.
I was somewhat dubious when this current craze hit. In fact, my Kindle was a gift -- a wonderful gift. I’m usually an early adaptor. I’m ready to jump on almost every dingbat idea that happens along, which has left me holding many a bag.
But this e-reading surge is no fluke. This time, it’s flying high. For fiction, it’s the best thing since sliced bread. For non-fiction...not so great, for me anyway.
When asked about reading books in bed, the Pew verdict was split: 45 percent prefer reading e-books in bed, while 43 percent prefer print. That’s for now, anyway. We’ll see how people feel this time next year.
You can find a ton more information on the report at www.pewinternet.org, if you’re interested.
Wouk wins book deal
Here’s a feel-good story: 96-year-old novelist Herman Wouk has landed a book deal. I’m fairly sure the book is already written. According to GalleyCat, publication is set for the fall.
Wouk is the author of “The Caine Mutiny,” “Marjorie Morningstar” and “The Winds of War,” among others. He is definitely not a johnny-come-lately to the writing game.
A spokesman for the publisher, Simon & Schuster, declared that he found himself “marveling at the verve and wit of this great American storyteller” and impressed with the “remarkable vitality and depth” of the writing. I sit in awe -- 96 is not an age at which to sneer.
JOPLIN, Mo. —
How many of you have read at least one e-book?
Miracle workers: Story about Santa's sanity featured for first time at Joplin Little Theatre
There's a reason Richard Copeland does such a convincing acting job as the judge in "Miracle on 34th Street": He's an associate circuit judge in Missouri's Judicial Circuit 29 for Jasper County.
Vocal quartet to sing medieval, current carols
Christmas songs aren't just Christmas songs, say members of New York Polyphony. As they are repeated and re-created, they become carols imbued with history and meaning.
Unique Christmas story features familiar situations
New Christmas stories don't come along very often. When Mark Sponaugle discovered a Christmas play he had never seen, he was instantly drawn to it.
Grand Funk Railroad to roll into Downstream
A blues rock band of the '70s responsible for a score of recognizable, remade hits will appear at Downstream Casino.
Holiday concerts featured at MSSU
Musicians and vocalists from Missouri Southern State University will perform three holiday concerts next week. All of the concerts are free and open to the public.
Joe Hadsall: Saints' success depends on me keeping mouth shut
The most intensely enforced item on my list of nevers, however: I never talk trash about teams with an upcoming game against the New Orleans Saints.
Dave Woods: Vegas a great destination for quick vacation
I love to get out of town for a few days, often with little notice. Expiring vacations days loomed on my calendar, and I needed some Dave time. Nothing fancy, just something cheap.
Benji Tunnell: 'Catching Fire' burns better than first movie
I'll be the first to admit I wasn't the biggest fan of the first "Hunger Games" movie. While it was capably executed, well-acted and certainly exciting, the entire premise of child-on-child violence left me feeling uneasy.
Jeremiah Tucker: Vacationing vegan Grimes has great advice for holidays
I thought of Thanksgiving last week, actually, when the mostly Internet-famous pop star and Earth-friendly vegan Grimes stirred-up a maelstrom of unholy terror by posting a photo of herself eating the new flavor of Ben & Jerry's ice cream "Scotchy Scotch Scotch" along with the comment "1 day hiatus from veganism is being had starting NOW."
Benji Tunnell: Journal reveals movie columnist's pain, angst
People often approach me to ask about what it is like living the glamorous life of a movie reviewer. After calling off the three burly men I employ to keep back the legion of adoring female readers, I set down my glass of champagne, push back my plate of caviar, and invite them to sit while I explain to them that it is not all fabulous movie premieres and hobnobbing with celebrities.
- More Enjoy Headlines
- Miracle workers: Story about Santa's sanity featured for first time at Joplin Little Theatre