Reading plays a huge role in life. Books help you learn something new, keep up a conversation or show off your erudition in company. But writers themselves see unobvious bonuses in literature. A person who reads rarely feels lonely, with the help of a good story can quickly distract from oppressive thoughts, better understand the world and the people around him. All of these examples are in books. We decided to recall them.
A book is not only the best gift, but sometimes a great friend. In any case, in the company of literary characters you will never feel lonely. Holden Caulfield, troubled teenager in the novel "Catcher in the Rye," difficult to get along with people, but he reads with gusto and dreams to communicate with writers. Here's how the literary hero explains why you should read books:
"...I'm so fond of such books that as soon as you read them to the end - so immediately you think: well, if this writer became your best friend and that with him you can talk on the phone when you want. But that rarely happens. I'd love to call this Dinesen, and Ring Lardner, of course, only D.B. says he's dead. But a book like Somerset Maugham's The Burden of Human Passion, for example, is not that. <...> I'd rather call the late Thomas Hardy. I like his Eustacia Way." It is not only Holden who finds real friends and educated interlocutors in books; the romantic Tatyana Larina, the clever Hermione Granger, and the indomitable Florence Green, the heroine of Penelope Fitzgerald's novel, find an outlet in them.
Getting rid of bad thoughts quickly
And that's another privilege of reading people. Good stories really help get rid of negativity and put yourself in a different frame of mind. If you are overcome by moping, follow the example of Grigory Pechorin, who, the night before the duel, reads a novel by Walter Scott:
"I remember that during the night before the duel I did not sleep a minute. I could not write for long: a secret restlessness took possession of me. For an hour I paced about the room; then I sat down and opened Walter Scott's novel lying on my desk: it was "The Scottish Puritans"; I read it with effort at first, and then I forgot myself, carried away by the magic fiction... Isn't the Scottish bard in the other world paid for every joyful minute his book gives?"
Even earlier than Lermontov arguments in favor of books are made by Pushkin's heroes:
Beaumarchais used to say to me, "Listen, Brother Salieri,
When black thoughts come to you,
"Open a bottle of champagne
Or read "The Marriage of Figaro".
We don't encourage you to drink alcohol, but Beaumarchais' immortal play is often enough to take your breath away.
Believe in the best.
Almost all positive literary heroes in some way dreamers, even if their character says otherwise. And that's not a bad thing at all, at least they don't lose their composure and faith in the best, even when faced with seemingly insurmountable situations.
Many strong female characters like to dream over books: Jane Eyre as a child adored "Robinson Crusoe", Molly Gibson from "Wives and Daughters" is waiting for a new novel by Walter Scott, and about Elizabeth Bennett ("Pride and Prejudice"), it is said that "she reads a lot and does not recognize other pleasures.
Find Purpose in Life
"Fight, seek, find and do not give up" - this is the motto under which Sanya Grigoriev lives from the famous Kaverin novel "The Two Captains." The boy had no books, and instead of fairy tales he read letters from the members of the polar expedition, which determined his future fate. Today, such letters can be read in biographical collections, and there is no need to look for a treasure in the form of a letter carrier's bag.
In general, the book can also be an end in itself. Thus, the heroine of Markus Zusak, Liesel Mehminger, risked her freedom to save literary works from destruction by the Nazis, and Florence Green made the bookstore the main business of her life.
Get to know the world and the people better
And a little nerdiness at the end. We could make many arguments from literature as to why you should read books, but perhaps the most striking illustration would be a world without books at all. In Ray Bradbury's novel 451 degrees Fahrenheit, people have lost touch not only with civilization's intellectual past, but also with each other, as their minds are only capable of empty, meaningless conversations.
"Everything you seek, Montag, exists in the world, but the common man can only see one hundredth of it with his own eyes, and the other ninety-nine percent he learns through a book."