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Matilda vs The E-Reader

One of the many things I am thankful to my parents is that they never discouraged my love for reading while growing up. We were very, very poor in my early years of life but they always put aside money for my books. My mother would make time to take me and my sister to the library every week despite her 70+ hour work schedule. And they never banned genres either; I read all the thrillers, mysteries, and even comic books I liked.

Sure, I was — and in many ways continue to be — a socially awkward girl who preferred to have her nose in a book than go out and interact with others. And while my overactive imagination has gotten me in plenty of trouble over the years, I wouldn’t trade the thousands of books I’ve read in my lifetime for any other life experience.

I want the same for my children. I always tell J that while I want our kids to be technophiles like their parents, I want their first material source of information+entertainment to be books. In other words, I want to make sure that I instill in them a love for books before the introduction of computers, televisions, video game systems, etc.

And as much as I know I may be fighting a losing battle here, I want them to always love and prefer physical and tangible BOOKS over e-readers. (I wrote back in 2008 that I would not dump books to go digital and my stance remains the same.)

This is precisely the reason the following comic strip hit so close to home with me. Especially since Roald Dahl is one of my favorite authors (did you know he has written some fantastic adult novels too?) and “Matilda” is a classic loved by millions. As Flavorwire writes:

Cartoonist Aaron Renier, author of Spiral Bound and The Unsinkable Walker Bean, has created a wonderful homage to Roald Dahl’s Matilda, imagining her as she might exist in our current (and future) age of multi-media e-readers for kids. Matilda’s evil, plaid suit sporting father gives the literature-loving Matilda an “iSwindle” and chastises her for wanting to use anything as low-tech as her imagination.