The World Book Day is celebrated on 23rd April. This year, Amazon India is marking the day with the campaign #ILovetoRead and asking readers to tell why they love to read books.
Well, when it comes to reading, I love novels best. When I was in my teens, devouring novels was my favoruite hobby. Now, alas, I’m grown up and have to mind the speed of time. So the reading is reduced, but not the love of books. Anyway, while I was falling more and more in love with novels, someone advised me that I should read ‘better’ books. That is, philosophical and spiritual books that teach how to live. I do intend to read Bhagavad Geeta one day. I’ve glanced through it on an Android app, and it’s sublime. Other than that, I don’t think I’d ever be a reader of philosophical or self-help books.
I have nothing against these books. Except that I find them boring. Instead, I love diving into a good novel and losing myself in its pages.
Here’s why I #LovetoRead novels:
1. Meet Awesome People:
I am a writer and a bookworm. The trouble is that writers are supposed to spend a lot of time with people, to observe them closely so they can create interesting characters. But frankly, bookworms are not so much into people. They would rather sit alone and spend time with the fictional characters inhabiting the world of books. May not be healthy for our social life, but who cares? There are plenty of awesome people to meet in books, some of them so great that they will just grip your heart and make you fall in love with them. Some so inspiring that without any preaching, they leave a lasting impact on your thoughts and attitudes. Some weird, some downright bad, some in whose traits you can see yourself.
I believe that I have met some awesome people in my life so far. Most of them are fictional. I have lived with them, felt with them, and learned from them. Because when you meet such great personalities, you can’t help but get influenced.
2. Explore Different Places and Ages:
Novels help you experience places that you would probably never get to see, that may not even exist. Novels don’t keep you restricted to real. Neither do they restrict you to present. They can take you to any time, show you the life of the era that you’ll never see in reality. Books of Indian literary geniuses like Guru Rabindranath Tagore, Munshi Premchand, etc. can give you a glimpse of India of bygone years. Books like Pride and Prejudice give you a glimpse of the Victorian Era in England. All this with more entertainment than can be expected from History or Geography books
3. Experience More:
Novels take us away from the mundane everyday life and make us experience the extraordinary highs and lows of life. All-consuming love, passionate romance, gripping danger, extreme sacrifice, hilarious fun, overcoming worst situations, and coming out as a winner, you can experience it all in novels. A fiction lover is blessed to be able to live many different lives in one and experience emotions and situations that thrill, excite, and leave you changed forever.
Image from http://www.desiringgod.org
4. Understand Better:
My mother says I have an excellent understanding of people. Well, my instincts about people are usually correct. I give all credit for that to novels I’ve read. Novels take you inside the head of characters and show why people can behave the way they do. I think that has also helped me become more forgiving of people. I still find people hard to tolerate when they intrude into my time and space, but I understand them better because of books. And I understand their imperfections and foibles, their misdeeds and selfishness because novels have taught me that nobody is perfect. People make mistakes. Yet, not even the worst person is all bad.
5. Novels are Awesome Entertainment:
If you want, you can ignore all the reasons mentioned in this post and keep just this one in mind. Sure other points are true too. But this one reason alone is enough to sufficiently account for my craving for novels. They are awesome entertainment! They have love, passion, thrill, suspense, humour, adventure, beauty, and a whole lot of such things that make novels an entertaining experience. That is why I feel so sorry for those who haven’t found the magic of books yet. There’s so much fun that they are missing!
6. Friends who don’t expect anything in return:
Novels are excellent friends. They are always there for you, they are entertaining. They can show you the path out of the darkness. They can solace you when you are gloomy. They are an awesome sleep buddy! And, they don’t want anything in return. You don’t have to talk to them when you don’t want to, you don’t have to return favours, you don’t have to pretend, and if you don’t like a novel, you can close it shut and put it away, never to bother with it again.
7. Excellent for Language Skills
This goes without saying, reading enhances language skills. I had quit school much too soon and continued my studies on my own through correspondence. Yet, I find that my language skills and vocabulary are far better than many who studied from good schools and colleges. I give all credit of that to the books I grew up with.
Image from https://www.buzzfeed.com
8. Best Addiction or Intoxication:
They make for an excellent addiction and means to intoxication. Get drunk on novels by all means, you will only come out better.
9. Valuable Life Lessons:
I believe that there is no greater way of imparting education than by way of a story. Maybe that’s why our ancestors created such amazing epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata. Both have invaluable life lessons woven into intricate and gripping stories.
Novels have characters caught between all sorts of situations where they need to make choices and act. These choices and actions create their destinies. The readers can judge for themselves what was good and whatnot.
I believe I am a better person today because of all the awesome books I’ve read and the great characters I’ve lived with. Novels have taught me that people are complicated. They may not always say what they want to or behave how they want to. So one must never judge a person by fleeting appearances.
Novels have taught me to keep my heart open to possibilities. Life has its own way of turning things around. When you are swamped with problems, you have to find a way out of them. And you can.
Novels have taught me that family matters. And when you accept someone as your friend, you have to stand by them.
And a lot, lot more that I’ve learnt from novels.
So if anyone now tells me to read books that teach, well, I’m doing just that! And it’s because of my love for novels that I’m a novelist today.
There were my reasons why I love to read novels so much. What kind of books do you enjoy most? And why?
* All images (except the last) gathered from Pinterest Board: Books are Magic.
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