|Photo Credit: Peter Kreten|
It begins with Orwell discussing an article he read about how "blue collar' workers weren't buying books anymore because they were far too expensive. So Orwell took an estimate of how many books he purchased throughout his life time and developed an average cost. He then did an estimate of how much money he spent on cigarettes for one year. As you might expect, cigarettes were more expensive than books.
But it doesn't end there. Orwell argues that yes books can be expensive, but their purchase should be seen as more of an investment. You can always learn something new from a book. If you keep a book for a long period of time, you could read it multiple times, and receive multiple experiences of entertainment. And finally, if worst came to worst, you can always re-sell any book you purchase at a second hand book story.
This is the first type of essay anthology of Orwell's that I have read. I am finding the material very engaging, and I think that it would be useful for any person who thinks books are a poor purchase choice to read.