I'm about to say something rather trite and clichéd.
You are never alone when you have the company of a good book.
I'm pretty sure that little gem didn't come from my own head... I probably saw it on Pinterest, but it's just so true. You can take a book anywhere; put it in your bag, take it for a train ride, take it out to lunch, take it babysitting for when the smalls have gone to bed, when you're home alone, when you're waiting for someone to sweep you off your feet. Like, on a date. At a coffee shop. And you want to look a bit clever and interesting. My advice? Always wear a beret. The beret will make the look. And the guy or gal fall in love. Immediately.
I have books that are old friends; books that I read over again and revisit whenever I need to. They sit on my bookshelf in a comforting manner, well thumbed, corners turned down, old bookmarks/ train tickets/ scraps of paper/ bits of fraying ribbon lurking between chapters, that musty old book smell clinging to the pages, the words flowing into sentences known off by heart. A lot of my favourite books are actually Teen or Young Adult books; Harry Potter, The Chronicles of Narnia, Lord of the Rings, The Hunger Games, anything by Robin Jarvis and Enid Blyton. They're the books I read when I was young and even after all this time, they still make me happy. I have the whole collection of Poldark books by Winston Graham, introduced to me by my Mama, which are wonderful and a set I could never bear to be parted from. I think perhaps my very favourite book is Gone With the Wind. It's a magnificent read, an enthralling, majestic story and, of course, I want to be Scarlett O'Hara. Yes, she's a ruthless, seemingly cold-hearted old bag, but I love her. She gets stuff done does Scarlett. She's a survivor. She's got gumption. Gawd bless 'er.
The thrilling thing about books is that they can take you anywhere. Literally, anywhere. You just don't know how you're going to feel when you start reading a new book. You might love it, you might hate it, but you'll feel something about it and that is the beauty of reading. All you need is a cosy chair, or bed, perhaps a blanket and a cup of tea and you can just be quiet and still and read the words and disappear off into another world/ land/ time/ place. That my friends is 'The Hush'. It's magical when you think about it. That a few words on a page can do all of that. Last year I went to war torn Afghanistan, The Republic of Gilead, Berlin, Poland then back to Berlin and I discovered the secret of creative living and the magical process of how inspirational ideas arrive.
Some books are so intoxicating you never want them to end and when they do you need to take a little break just to come back down to earth because the world you just left was all encompassing and so real. To read a good book is to escape reality for a while. And I love that, I really, really love that. Books. An endless source of amusement, knowledge, vocabulary and most importantly, magic. Long live books and the storytellers who weave their words for us to enjoy.