I’ve learnt about psychology, forensics, police procedures, court proceedings, professions other than my own, other ways of life, and life in other countries; all by reading crime thrillers.
Famous book lovers are littered throughout our history, and have included Marcus Tullius Cicero, Abraham Lincoln and Jane Austen. They may not have read crime and thriller books, but like us, they realised the value of reading and how much can be learnt from books.
“Read at every wait; read at all hours; read within leisure; read in times of labour; read as one goes in; read as one goest out. The task of the educated mind is simply put: read to lead.” Marcus Tullius Cicero
The famous orator and senator of Ancient Rome, Cicero, was also a notable reader. Even if he had been given access to modern crime thrillers, Cicero may have felt that his own life was too exciting to need to gain his thrills through reading. For those of us with slightly more normal lives however, reading thrillers can be a way of experiencing fear at a safe distance. Which is certainly the most sensible way to experience it!
Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the USA in 1861 and he issued the Emancipation Proclamation that freed slaves within the Confederacy in 1863. Lincoln loved reading. He came from a poor family and had hardly any formal education, but made great efforts to educate himself by devouring books.
“I feel the need of reading. It is a loss to a man not to have grown up among books… Books serve to show a man that those original thoughts of his aren’t very new after all.” Abraham Lincoln
Jane Austen is famous as the writer of ‘Pride And Prejudice’ and other great literary works, but she also very much enjoyed reading books. Jane and her siblings grew up in a household that encouraged learning, and were encouraged to read books from their father’s impressive library.
“I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book! When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.” Jane Austen
Travel the World Through Books
My sentiments reflect Jane’s very precisely and I am building up my own personal library. You don’t have to travel to know the world, you don’t have to meet all who exist to know people, and you don’t need to be a scientist to have an appreciation of scientific advances. You can learn about all of these things by reading books.
“A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading.” William Styron
Put Your Feet Up With a Good Book
So don’t feel guilty when you sit down and put your feet up with a good book, because reading is never a waste of time, and you are in very august company.