For as much as I like going to the movies, enjoying a story told through the ease of visuals and a script I don't have to read, they are usually over in roughly two hours and often easily forgotten. I can go back and rewatch should I suddenly desire to, but it never feels like enough time for me to sink into a world and become completely enveloped in the focus of the characters. You know the feeling, don’t you.
A book, however, has a way of growing around us. Starting as a small tear in reality, and eventually becoming a huge crevice that we're seduced into, it often takes a long time to return from the literary journey, and somehow, it changes us forever. Forget the smell of the book, the satisfaction of the spine’s crack, the comfort of the natural silence we crave in a bookstore or library which trails us home and sinks into the pages. These are all great side effects, happy byproducts of the book itself. But the words printed on pages, organized in such a way to create a transformation in and around us, is unquestionable magic.
In reading, we are no longer only ourselves, but a second being. Our foundation is given the freedom to blend with new questions and thoughts, and by the end of the first chapter, we have a new perception on the world around us. Things seem shinier. Or not so shiny. Dangerous, or perhaps peaceful. Wonder comes in so many forms, and all are achievable through nothing other than words.
Look at this word: ANNOYING. Or try this one: REPTILE. Or how about GOLDEN. They make you feel entirely different, don't they. Isn't it fascinating and incredible that we have no choice but to read a word when it is presented to us? We can't look at a word and say you don't care to read this. It simply happens. How is this? We learn to read, and yet it is as natural as a heartbeat. No effort required, just the simplicity of a gaze across a page. Read, return, regift or reread.