Disclaimer: All of this is used by my own experiences and common sense. If you want scientific facts check out this link: 8 science-Backed Reasons To Read A (Real) Book.
Why read? Why take time out your life to sit and stare at the alphabet rearranged in different combinations and length? Why read when there are summaries on the internet? Why do that when there are film makers creating a movie adaption? The simple answer: Escapism
The long answer is a combination of things that I shall put out as a list because I like lists:
When you watch a movie adaption, it is the director’s take on the book. It is the way they see it, which is not necessarily wrong, but it is their take on it. You don’t need your own imagination. When you read a book the authors give you the basic description, but the rest is up to you. You can full in the rest to your heart’s desire. Your mind is not limited to what people say (well everyone except the authors obviously).
Slows You Down And Speeds Time Up:
Yes I know that is a contradiction but let a girl explain:
Imagine you are in waiting for someone or something, and you have another hour til you can go. Are you going to pace around in desperate boredom? Are you going to shoot the wall with a gun? Unless you are Sherlock Holmes the answer is no. You can pass the time with a good book. That hour would be over quickly, and before you know it you are late. You can stop at the end of a chapter, but not on an episode on Netflicks (apparently)
You maybe thinking “how does it slow down time?”, then, friends, you must understand that in our fast pace world we don’t have time to just sit down with an awesome book. Everyone is running around, with something to do with a time limit. Movies are like that. In two hours the movie is done, but with books you can just sit down and relax your brain, with all the time in the world.
Improves Language And Spelling:
In the day and age of technology you may not think it is important, but it is. For kids still in school, they have to write those God awful essays in exams where there is no spellcheck. Ya know, those essays where you bullshit your way through. It makes writing those exams easier.
Now for the adults, there is really not a lot to say except if you want to make a good impression in an interview. I mean any interview. The chance of getting a creative job would be higher than if you use colourful words about your personality than “I’m a nice boy/girl”. For posh jobs they would be more likely to hired you if you use better vocabulary. I may be sixteen but we all know that is true.
I’m not even talking about reading non-fiction, scientific research journals (though they do help). You can learn virtually anything from books. You can learn about disabilities, mental and physical, and how they affect a person’s life. You can learn theories on religion with a fictional twist (here’s looking at you Dan Brown). You can learn simple social stuff about how important friends are and all that jazz. Harry Potter for example, teaches us that we need friends and teaches us about prejudice. Harry needs his DA and best friends to defeat the Dark Lord. The Death Eaters discriminate muggles and “mud bloods” (a wizard or witch born to muggle parents). They thought: Well, I am sick of not being recognised as a superior being, so I’m going to commit mass genocide. Then they fail because forces of good defeat the assholes. Basically the child-friend version of the Holocaust. You see, educational.
Another example is the Percy Jackson series. (It is also an example with “Don’t judge a book by its movie”, but that’s blog for another time…). It is about a kid who found out that he is the son of Poseidon and again fights against Titans to save the world with his two best friends. I love these books so much because Roirdan managed to incorporate Greek Mythology into the modern world. I literally have no idea how to express my feelings towards how useful it is. Educational, again.
I know that it doesn’t sound that appealing but read dystopian novels, like 1984 and Animal Farm both by George Orwell, Brave New World because beside the fact that they are it is extremely good, they an Animal Farm, for example is not really dystopian, but I’m including it because it is about a community run by communist pigs. That is pretty dystopian to me. Orwell is basically giving the history of Russian politics in hundred pages of a farm metaphor.
I mention this before but I think it may need an explanation. Escapism is when one finds relief and distraction from the crap reality of life, the universe and everything in it. One does this through making up pleasant fantasies, or devising into an alternative reality. Or simply watching a movie or reading a book. I might as well add fandoms and fan fiction, but the requirement is to have a basic understanding of said world, and being prepared for your heart to be wrenched out of your chest and beaten to a bloody pulp (Sherlock, I am looking at you).
Books provide a safe place to let yourself become someone else, who has different problems, or if they are the same, you can relate to the person and feel comfortable to know that if there is a book written about it then there are others out there just like you and you don’t feel alone. Sometimes that is what one needs. In movies you can’t go in-depth into a character, learn more about them. In books there are characters thoughts and extra information that makes you understand them more.
And that is why I read.