Books are for people who wish they were somewhere else. – Mark Twain

Books are for people who wish they were somewhere else.

Mark Twain

Books are a man’s best friend (sorry, dogs!). They can be a source of knowledge, they can lift our spirits when we are down, they can motivate us on days when it is hard to drag ourselves out of the bed, and they can help us grow and mature in a matter of minutes. However, there is another aspect to reading – and dare we mention that it is not one that everyone will agree with.

As helpful as books can get, some people read them more out of a dissatisfaction at their present standing in life. For them, books are a reflection of where they would like to be in life, or at least in a given moment. In other words, reading ceases to be a leisurely activity and rather becomes an escape to a fantasy world. This can, of course, be both positive and negative, depending on how you look at it.

So long as this is done in moderation, such reading habits can actually foster creativity and profundity of thought; they can bring the best out of a person who knows or learns to take things the right way. However, for readers who find it increasingly hard to tell reality from fantasy or fiction, it is best to give reading a break – at least for a while – or try a genre that will not pique their imagination so much. After all, what use is reading if it becomes counterproductive to one’s social, personal and professional growth?

Samuel Langhorne Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, was a critically-acclaimed American writer, publisher and entrepreneur. His following quote about reading is quite well known in this regard: “Books are for people who wish they were somewhere else.”