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Talk about the book that most changed or influenced your life (was it a book that turned you from an average to avid reader, did it help you deal with a particularly difficult situation, does it bring you comfort every time you read it?).
Well, I do remember the first books that got me into reading as a teenager. It was the fear street series by R.L. Stine. Looking back I don't quite get the appeal but they worked for me at the time. After those books ran dry I started looking around. Naturally, through assignments in English I read some classics. That was the next area of books that fed my reading need. My most favorite from the classics is Jane Eyre. I have owned a copy since high school and have read it so many times it feels like a friend. I felt bereft when I misplaced it during college. But somehow the copy found its way back to me even though someone had marked it up a bit. I don't know that any one book has changed my life but I am sure they have helped to shape who I am. Books are mostly an escape for me. I use them to calm my troubled heart or rest my weary mind. I feel as if they can pull all the unwanted feelings and concerns from my mind leaving me a bit more ready to face the world. On top of that I believe that when reading these books I get to have more control. I can decide how much energy to invest in the characters and thereby feel more or less emotion. Real life isn't so easy. Plus, if things are going horribly wrong in a book I can close it walk away and imagine a happy ending for the characters. Besides when I read a book I become a non entity. I exist as an observer not someone with troubles of their own. It isn't until I leave the book that I become a person again. The books provide a temporary haven of comfort.