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Literature: A Universal Love

Literature: A Universal Love

At the tender age of 3, I was an avid reader. Before I was able to comprehend the magic of words myself, my parents would spend hours reading to me. I read Anne of Green Gables when I was six years old, after previously finishing all the Junie B. Jones and Magic Tree House books. When I misbehaved, my parents would hide my books, rather than limiting time in front of the TV or on the computer.  In fact, I attribute much of my growth – intellectually and spiritually – to the beautiful gift of literature.

That being said, visiting bookshops in foreign countries has recently become one of my favorite activities while studying abroad, whether I am able to understand the language or not. So far, I have had the privilege of visiting a bookstore in Brussels, Belgium, where French is widely spoken, London, England, where I was luckily able to purchase a few books thanks to the fact that I actually speak English, and Amsterdam, Netherlands, where most books are in Dutch, with a limited selection of English books.

Perusing bookshelves full of beautiful masterpieces by renowned authors is nothing short of euphoric. I am absolutely weak for the beauty of words and their ability to tell a beautiful story when strung together in a unique and heartfelt way. This is my nirvana. For an instant, I experience true artistic beauty and I am devoid of any further wanting or desire. I find myself happily wandering from book to book, always searching for translations of my favorite books or anthologies by authors including F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, T.S. Eliot, Kate Chopin, and more.

Literature has and forever will be one of my greatest passions, my dearest love, and the comfort I long for when I am a wanderer in an unfamiliar city. Miles from home, and often in places where I do not understand the language, I have found a light that warms my soul and feeds my heart’s desires.

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