I’ve been an introvert all my life. You know how kids have the ability of becoming friends almost instantly? Well, I didn’t have that. Instead, I had the ability of becoming friends with books. I’d talk to the characters in my Noddy Pop-up book or travel to the mysterious side of the world, to Wonderland with Alice.

You see, books have the ability to keep you engaged until the very end. They make you laugh and cry at the same time. I read books in order to grow more, learn something new and feed my curiosity; it is so refreshing to jump into that extraordinary and undiscovered world where anything can happen. I still remember the very first novel I read. For me, novels were a step ahead of the usual picture books or storybooks that I read. So, I went to the school library, determined to take home a book which I would read until the very end. One particular book shone like a diamond in the rustic shelves of the cupboard. It was a mystery novel which revolved around a teenager “Sammy” and since my name was so similar to hers, I began to relate to her on a personal level.

Soon enough, I became Sammy Keyes, the detective who would go out of her way to catch the red-handed thief. It introduced me to a whole new world and the library became a very special place for me. I started to enjoy breathing in the lovely scent of paper and magic that, strangely, no one had bothered to bottle. I began reading more and more books every day. Each book seemed more interesting than the last one. Despite having read so many books, Sammy Keyes occupied a very special corner in my heart; a special haven or an escape from the everyday life where I could just be myself.

I like to think that that book changed my life. I’m currently pursuing English Honors and reading some of the best literary works of Shakespeare and Keats. Now, I can proudly say that my brain is powered by books!

Thank you so much for sharing your story with us, Samia! We earnestly hope that your journey in the magical world of books can inspire our young readers – and especially our female followers – to engage with books.

If you, the voracious Indian reader we seek to connect with, has a similar – or different – story to tell, feel free to reach out to us: