Books are back thanks to doodling, but that’s far better than the alternative


Books are back. If you are staring at a pile of freshly unwrapped sporting autobiographies and clean eating guides, this may not come as a surprise. Everyone buys books at Christmas; but in 2015, people have been buying them for the other 11 months of the year too, with the result that the printed word looks a little less doomed than previously feared.

In November, book sales in the UK were up 9.8 per cent on last year, to £149.7m, while total sales for 2015 were up 6 per cent by mid-December, according to figures from Nielsen BookScan. In America, too, the physical book is on the rise again – with 571m sold, up from 559m last year. As the novelty of e-readers wears off, the old paper-and-ink has come to seem like something special once more.

This all adds up to a good story in my book. I have a Kindle and wouldn’t be without it when travelling, but it cannot compare with going into a bookshop and buying a physical object. An e-reader can offer suggestions based on algorithms or page after page of sub-par 99p thrillers, but the power of a browse is irresistible. >>READ MORE