His piece begins:
Frank Schembari loves books — printed books. He loves how they smell. He loves scribbling in the margins, underlining interesting sentences, folding a page corner to mark his place.
Schembari is not a retiree who sips tea at Politics and Prose or some other bookstore. He is 20, a junior at American University, and paging through a thick history of Israel between classes, he is evidence of a peculiar irony of the Internet age: Digital natives prefer reading in print.
“I like the feeling of it,” Schembari said, reading under natural light in a campus atrium, his smartphone next to him. “I like holding it. It’s not going off. It’s not making sounds.”
Among other nuggets in the article:
Textbook publishers trying to go completely ebook are meeting resistance from readers. Students say they read a print book more carefully than on digital media. Ironically, students are being pushed by their professors and universities to digital media, the article says, when they don't comprehend as much that way. Much of the end of the piece is about the educational consequences of a huge official shift away from books, without regard to the differences in comprehension and experience.
Photos are by Reinier Gerritsen's series of people reading on the NY subway.