Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Solid Oak Fold Away Book Rest ** Product Review**

So, on Friday, I had a wonderful email from thatcompanycalledif, who contacted me about the review of their Electronic Dictionary Bookmark that I did a while back. So, to cut a long story short, I shall be reviewing more of their products regularly to let you guys know of all the wonderful book-related products that are available. They have a really great range, and I really look forward to being able to share them with you all!


Company: thatcompanycalledif
Product type: Fold away book stand
Available from: Amazon UK|Waterstone's

A couple of weeks ago, I bought the Solid Oak Fold Away Book Rest to use while doing my university work. What I've constantly found when trying to do research for each of my assignments, is that reading a book and writing out quotes and references from it at the same time is a bit of a challenge. While at the library in Birmingham researching my last assignments, I tried everything possible to keep the book I was reading, standing up on its own so I could write out the quotes I needed, but to no avail.
I have seen the fold away book rest several times before, as I work in a Waterstone's bookstore, and we keep them in stock, but I'd never really considered buying one for myself before, thinking that they would be mostly useful for recipe books, which I don't use too often. But after encountering further problems with my academic research, I decided to give one a shot and see how well it would sort out my problem.
As soon as I got it home, I took it out to have a look at it. It folds up to a reasonably small size, so it will definitely be portable enough for taking to the library with me, should I need to visit the reference section again any time soon.
I think the product is supposed to come with its own carry bag, but unfortunately, I realised when I got home that mine was lacking its carry bag. I don't see this as too much of a problem though, as I can just slot it back into the packaging it came in and pop that in my bag with my books. It's worth taking the little extra room because of how helpful it is proving.
Unfolding the stand is extremely simple. The main body of the rest is made of two long pieces of oak and then held with a strong piece of (what I'd describe as) velvety string, to stop the rest from unfolding too far or collapsing. On the bottom of the stand, either side are two extra pieces of oak that hold the book and the pages in place. These are fully adjustable, so if the pages begin trying to escape, you can adjust the holder angle so that it stays in a better position. This adjustable feature is also good for when the text on the page would otherwise be obscured by the holders - you can just move it out of the way!
As you can see from the photo on the right, the book is held really well by the stand - and this is a fairly chunky book, which still fits. I was initially worried that if I had a research book that was too large, it may not fit in the stand, but there is enough room for most reasonably sized books. I don't think my dictionary would fit in there - but that isn't going to be a problem!
Another positive for the stand is that, although this is a fairly thick book in the photo, I can still turn the pages easily, with one hand, and without having to move the holders at the bottom of the pages - I can just slide the page underneath and carry on reading, which is something I didn't consider before I bought it, but I'm glad that the product makes this easy.
If there was one thing I would mark the stand down on, it's that you can only really have the book sitting at one angle, as the piece of oak that holds the stand up from the back is also held by the same velvety string that stops the main body of the stand from falling too far apart. The company do another book stand (one that doesn't fold away like this), that does have an adjustable back, so you can choose the angle that the book sits at, but I haven't found that the angle of this stand is too bad. There may be circumstances where it would be better to be able to adjust the back, but I've not really come across it yet, and it's a fairly good angle for what I need it to do.

Overall this product has been incredibly useful for me as a student. Researching from the books I need is easier than ever as I don't have to hold the books and write at the same time. But it will also be useful for recipe books and other things when the circumstances arrive.
I recommend this product mostly for students who, like me, have to do a lot of research and reading for their course, but I'd also recommend it for anyone who uses a lot of cookery books.
It's a really useful bookish product and one I don't think I'll be able to work without now!


Mrs Mac said...

We (the royal we) like this a lot! If I was doing research this would be the one. Nicely made by the look of it. Think I may recommend this to younger friends!!

Stephanie Verhaegen said...

This is indeed handy if you have to research stuff. Very nice!

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