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'Books are different'

15 October 2007

'Books are different, as people have always argued through the ages. They are a cornerstone of civilisation, so they're not quite like other consumer products. They are fundamental to intellectual development. The very depressing statistics you read about the coincidence of dyslexia and prison inmates suggest that in the modern world if you can't read and don't enjoy reading it's a major disadvantage. I think a home that doesn't have books is a bit of a sad place, really...

(Books) are tremendously cheap compared to most things, like, for example, mobile phone calls. The amount of time a £6 ($12.19) book provides - 20 hours of entertainment? - means they are fantastic value.'

Luke Johnson, whose company has just bought Borders UK, in the Observer