This might seem redundant on a book blog, but I really do love books. I love books in all their forms: print or electronic; old and tatty or crisp and new; beautifully designed or so plain it’s practically a printout. All of them. I love books that educate, entertain, shock, horrify, uplift, sadden or amuse me.
I have always tried not to be in any way snobby about books or reading. If some people prefer to only read for information-gathering, or only for total escapism, that’s up to them. I think all reading is beneficial – even the backs of cereal packets. I might have a literature degree and have ticked off a lot of titles on those “must read” lists that do the rounds, but I also read a lot of Mills & Boon as a teenager – and really enjoyed them!
That’s not to say I don’t want to change the balance of what I read to better represent the world I live in (I now read slightly more women than men, but most of these authors are white and, to the best of my knowledge, cis-gender and able-bodied). And if I can encourage others using positive means to read more broadly then that’s brilliant.
But mostly, World Book Day is about encouraging reading books full stop. And I can definitely get behind that. I know that it can be hard to find the time and I sometimes feel guilty that most days when I get home from work my brain is so fried I just turn on the TV. Even on those days, though, I sleep better if I read a little in bed.
For me, nothing can replace the total absorption of a good book. I never fully switch off from the world when I watch TV (films, on the other hand…) but the right book takes all my attention. That’s really valuable to me.
So happy World Book Day. Read books, any books, any way that you like. Just keep on reading.