In this day and age, everyone is all about technology. It seems that everything is being replaced with technology, (I am even typing this on a Chromebook instead of the regular pen and paper). When I was younger, I used to be all about reading. Every weekend I would go to the bookstore with my Grandmother and come home with my arms full of new books and a huge smile on my face; It was a huge part of my childhood. Now I look around, on off hours at school kids are texting instead of reading. Even in the library, kids are typing papers and texting their friends, and very little kids read paper books. Kids often complain about reading because it is “boring” and I often hear people my age joking that they haven’t touched a book for fun in years, or when friends see one another reading they ask, “You know how to read?” People have been reading for years upon years, so why now is it such a big deal for kids to slack off? In my English class last year, we read every single Wednesday (which I always looked forward to) and even then, kids would bring nooks and ready books on their phone. There was a whole library in our classroom, so why would someone want to read digitally?

Technology is very enticing to us, why would I read an old paper book if I could pull out my phone and have access to anything I wanted? Once you have had a taste of the internet it can be hard to put your phone down to take a look at the real world. I realized that it had been months since I had been to the book store, so I stopped by after work one day. I skimmed the aisles as I once did when I was young (different aisles of course, my taste has matured from pictures to non fiction) and soon the magic was back. The smell and feeling of picking up a new book is something I had forgotten was so important to me. I waited eagerly in the checkout line to buy my book, and raced home to read.

When I got home I went straight to my room, and the first thing I did was read. I didn’t check my phone. I didn’t go on my laptop, I just read. I got really into the book, like I used to do when I was a kid. The fun thing about reading is that a book is practically a whole other world. Opening the book is like opening the door to a universe you are stepping inside of. That is the importance of books, they are in a way, an escape from reality. An escape from the real world. You can’t escape the real world by reading on your phone, because notifications will pop up and texts will buzz and you will be thinking in the back of your mind about the present, not the book. So do yourself a favor, take a break from reality. Go to the bookstore and buy a new book, then go home and step into another universe.

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January 27, 2017 3:32 pm

Dear katie
I do think that kids and teenagers are more into there phones and not there books i really like reading books and i do have friends that like books and we read every single day i think that they do need to read more and get reading and not use there phones even though i have a phone i don´t use it very often like most of my other friends do i just read.

January 27, 2017 3:30 pm

Dear Katie,
I also think it is very important to read a lot because now people are only paying attention to their phones. Like you said reading something online isn’t as good as reading an actual book. Plus you might get to distracted.

January 26, 2017 2:31 am

First of all, congratulations on being showcased and thank you for this well written and well informed piece. I completely agree with you in saying that people who do not read are saddening and are missing out. When I realize how little I myself have been reading lately, dragged down as I am by schoolwork, extracurriculars, commitments with friends, etc., I am, quite frankly, ashamed, and I wish that I, as well as people as a whole, were to read more.
However, lately I have been listening to quite a few audiobooks and, when my phone is muted, I think it holds just as much merit as a physical book. I can immerse myself in a reader’s voice as well as I can in text, and in my experience it makes challenging texts more accessible.
What do you think? Is there a way to combine literature and technology without detracting from the former, or is it impossible? Do you listen to audiobooks? Do you enjoy them?

January 26, 2017 1:51 am

Dear Katie,
I was intrigued by your opinion and topic, “Teenagers and reading books, what’s the big deal?,” because I really wanted to know what your piece had to offer since the title included the question, “what’s the big deal?”. I think your way of telling people to stop reading online… online… is a very interesting one. In your piece you wrote, “The smell and feeling of picking up a new book is something I had forgotten was so important to me”, this is a line that really stood out to me because I find it reassuring. Like you, growing up I loved reading. However, currently I don’t find reading as interesting as I once did. When you said, “In my English class last year, we read every single Wednesday”, I was reminded by something I used to do at my elementary school a few years back. I remember always being excited on the days I had the opportunity to read. Thanks for your writing. I hope you continue to develop your strong ideas because they truly are important. I hope I get tthe chance to read one of your future posts. Thank you for reopening my opinion on reading.

Youth Voices is an open publishing and social networking platform for youth. The site is organized by teachers with support from the National Writing Project. Opinions expressed by writers are their own.  See more About Youth VoicesTerms of ServicePrivacy Policy.All work on Youth Voices is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License


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