An ode to broken spines: Why I gave them up for audiobooks

So let’s pretend I still have any readers back from 2013. This blog began as “Cracking the Binding.” There wasn’t much reason for the name besides liking the sound of it. I was actually in the “books are sacred” club back then, never daring to dog-ear a page or to even carry around a book with its dust jacket on so it wouldn’t get ruined.

But I love what a broken spine represents. It proves the book was well-loved. That the book was set face down so you wouldn’t lose your spot. You can imagine the book opened wide so the reader could squeeze one last chapter in before bed. It’s enthusiasm in one of the purest forms. If you love it for long enough, they even start to fall apart, like my well-worn copy of the Chamber of Secrets.

But life changes; it even changes the way you read sometimes.

While I was in university, I could really only read on breaks and the books I had been assigned. This blog came from a class assignment I chose as an excuse to read more. But after graduating, I couldn’t afford new books all the time and couldn’t justify spending a lot of time with a physical book during my job search, and I was in a difficult mental headspace.

Enter audiobooks.

Audiobooks took a few months to get used to, but fast-forward three years, and now they take up 95+ percent of my reading. I listen to audiobooks to fall asleep. I listen to audiobooks while running errands and doing household chores. And I buddy read audiobooks with my S.O. while gaming. You could call me obsessed.

So, when it came to restarting this blog, I couldn’t in good conscience keep calling it “Cracking the Binding,” something I hadn’t done in years.

And that, my friends, is my long winded way of explaining the name change.

Next up here I’ll be posting a belated August wrap up.

Till then, I want to know where you stand on the “sacred books” debate: Do you disown friends who dog-ear their books? Let me know in the comments!

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