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The Joy of Reading

By Staff | Jul 9, 2015

“A Good Book Can Transport Us To Other Worlds,

Or Reveal More About This One”

I was reading an article about “reading” and it started out with the words above. How very true. Books can take you anywhere, at any time, and we learn along the way.

Author Darlene Quinn says, “Reading is beneficial for everyone, whether we do it for entertainment, to pass the time or to learn. We can grow and change from the first page to the last page, and anywhere in between. A love for reading can open a lot of doors.”

In the article by Ginny Grimsley, Darlene Quinn offers six ways reading can bring joy to your life:

Relaxation factor. After a busy day, down time with a book can be a rewarding way to segue into bedtime. “Putting up your feet with a cup of tea and a timeless story can make the stress melt away,” Quinn says. “What better way to unwind?” The beauty of ending the day with a good book is that you can still have mental stimulation even as you seek a distraction from personal issues, work concerns and the unexpected complications of life.

Universal appeal, personal experience. People can read the same book, yet come away with an experience that is distinct for them, Quinn says. That puts her in agreement with Edmund Wilson, the American literary and social critic, who observed that “no two persons ever read the same book.” Quinn says we often alter what is written – or at least our interpretations of it – to reflect our situations, personalities and opinions.

Tech savvy welcome, but not required. E-readers are popular these days and it’s not hard to understand why, Quinn says. They bring numerous benefits to the reading experience, such as the ability to instantly download new books or change the type size on the screen. But tried-and-true print versions of books remain strong and it’s nice to be able to grab a book without charging its battery or bringing along a power cord, Quinn says.

To infinity and beyond. Trains, planes and automobiles all have limits on where they can take us. Books don’t. A science fiction novel can whisk us away to an alternate universe. A historical novel can plunk us down in the middle of the Salem witch trials. In the movie “Toy Story,” Buzz Lightyear’s catchphrase was “to infinity and beyond.” That aptly describes the reach of books and the power they have to transport us. “Right in our hands we have the passageway to a new world, a new language or a new understanding,” Quinn says. “We can be anywhere and we can be there at any time.”

Lessons within the pages. The opportunity to expand our creativity and knowledge is what reading is all about, Quinn says. Name a topic and a book exists that can help you learn more about it. The options are numerous – music, history, art, geography, exploration, science, nature, religion and more. “My goal has always been to be a lifelong learner and books are a fantastic asset for achieving that,” Quinn says.

John Green, author of such works as “The Fault in Our Stars” and “Paper Towns,” has said, “Great books help you understand, and they help you feel understood.”

My granddaughter purchased two copies of “The Fault in Our Stars,” one for her and one for me. Though we were a few hundred miles apart, we read the book “together” and then got on the phone to discuss the book. What a joy that gift was. Give it a try with someone special.