The Shallows | Review


 “Is Google making us stupid?” When Nicholas Carr posed that question, in a celebrated Atlantic Monthly cover story, he tapped into a well of anxiety about how the Internet is changing us. He also crystallized one of the most important debates of our time: As we enjoy the Net’s bounties, are we sacrificing our ability to read and think deeply?

– Goodreads ||| Add it on Goodreads

The Shallows was an incredibly engaging, accessible, fascinating read. It grabbed my interest and didn't let it go.

I enjoyed learning about the way the brain interacts with the world wide web. Turns out, scanning and dismissing huge amounts of information will reroute the neural pathways in your brain. And did you know that it's harder to remember a book you read on a screen, than it is to remember what you read in a traditional book? Also, when material contains a lot of hyperlinks, it's even more difficult to retain information. This is because a reader's attention is interrupted by the act of reading and constantly making decisions about whether to click on a link. I found those parts of the book very interesting.

It was also interesting to learn some history on the internet, computers, the printing press, and to get a look at the nervous system of the sea slug. 

I don't think all the conclusions in this book are correct, but it's an engaging perspective on something I don't usually consider – how internet usage is changing us. The internet claims our attention daily, and I think it's important to be aware how it affects us.

The internet is extremely useful – the knowledge of the world is at our fingertips. However, The Shallows left me with motivation to reduce my internet use. If I'm constantly chasing down fresh content, mores facts and endless entertainment, when will I take time to internalize and ponder that knowledge? I still need moments when I can focus, consider and think deeply. I find myself wanting to steal away from the web and savor tranquility.

Have you read The Shallows? What did you think of it? Is it harder for you to remember what you read on a screen, than what you read in a traditional book? (It's hard for me!)


  1. It was! It's definitely one of my favorite read this year! :)

  2. I'll have to see if this is in my local library! Might be an interesting read for this summer. Using the Internet for more than an hour almost always puts me in a bad mood, and I much prefer reading paperbacks to ebooks on my Kindle.

    1. I prefer paperbacks as well, it's easier to get into the story, that way. Let me know if you enjoy The Shallows! :)


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