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What Books Do To Me | Bookosmia

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Bookosmia Spotlight

Riva Agarwal

Hey friends! Sara, here. What is the reading experience like for you? For 14 year old Riva Agarwal, it’s a trance, a birdsong, a forest and so many other stunning visualizations! As they say, thanks to a book you can travel the world without even leaving your seat!

Riva is a student of Word Munchers and goes to Calcutta International School.

What Books Do To Me | Bookosmia

I can feel my lungs fill in with fresh air. As I exhale, my eyes take in the beauty of the lush green trees surrounding me.

What books do to me


I look down and see the turquoise waters in the pool, ever so calm. I feel like I’m stuck in a trance, hypnotized by the beauty of this treehouse. Suddenly, I feel lonely, alone in the middle of a forest, on top of a treehouse. But then my mind wants to unwind.


I pick up a book and read it, while sipping on the hot coffee next to me. Calm. That’s how I feel. Calm and bewitched. No one to invade my privacy, and the sounds of birdsong filling my ears. I close my eyes, to take in the beauty of this place. It feels surreal.


But as I open my eyes, suddenly, I see I’m in a completely different place.


There is a pungent smell in the air, such a strong odour. My lungs inhale it, and I feel like retching. I want to stop breathing. I look around and see people squatting and chatting. They look normal, calm, unbothered by the smell. Am I the only one who can smell it? How can that be?


I look left, and I see a man bathing on the road, in front of everyone. Where is privacy? Why is he not using a washroom? The houses so crammed up together, it is so crowded. The houses are colorful- bright, clothes hanging here and there. But no color coordination. This place is horrible, shabby, and so congested. I want to leave.

What books do to me


I was in such a luxurious place before, how did I come here? I closed my eyes, trying to process what had happened.


As I opened them again, I could see the greenery again. I looked down to see the book still in my hand. I read the page again. I was imagining the part I was reading.

What books do to me


Wow, the descriptions were so vivid, it felt so real. I felt like I have lived in that slum, even though I have never been anywhere close to a slum.

That is the beauty of books. It is enthralling.

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