I love books.
For as long as I can read, I have loved all kinds of books: fiction and non-fiction, novels, short stories, poetry, books in every genre, on every subject.
The public library in the town hall was one of my favorite places in my youth, with its hollow silence, disrupted by hesitant piano notes from the music school above it, and its typical dusty smell of books. The people I met there also fascinated me: book lovers of all ages, like-minded people. The enthusiastic volunteers behind the desk, who so enjoyed the undeniable passion for reading of that shy little girl.
Although later in my life I had less time to read for pleasure, I never lost my love for books.
I love books in various ways. I love the stories that are told in them, I love the story of their origin, how they were thought up and written by the author, how they were designed, printed and published; I love the story of the books themselves, how long they have been around and what they have been through and by whom they have been read. Above all, I love how a book takes me on an adventure, the emotions it evokes, the amazement, the marvel, the broadening of my field of vision and the enrichment of my life.
Through the internet, tv and streaming services I can get entertained endlessly and in a passive way absorb as many stories as I want to – binge-watch if I have to – but nothing gives the same immersion and the same delight as taking the time and the effort to get myself stuck in, to form the images in my own mind for, to connect myself with and to submerge myself in, one specific story.