Many book nerds like myself joke that their best friends are the characters they read about in books. Many people laugh at our joke, because those characters aren’t real, right? Wrong!
Those characters are absolutely real. They aren’t made up of flesh and blood like you and I are. They’re made up of ink and paper. However those characters do share something in common with you and I. They have real emotions, real goals, and real stories.
We listen to our friends talk and tell us their emotions and their goals in life. That isn’t any different to the characters that tell us about their emotions and goals in their lives. We intimately follow them on their journey. We feel what they feel, we root for them, we get mad at them sometimes, we even believe we can talk to them because we know them so well we know what they would say to us.
The books we read and the characters in them have an effect on us as powerful as the people in our lives. To use one of my favorite quotes, “When you read a book as a child it becomes a part of your identity in a way that no other reading in your whole life does” – Kathleen Kelly, You’ve Got Mail
I bet you can remember the books you read as a child and the characters you loved best. I started with the Tree House Series, and continued on to Narnia, The Island of the Aunts, The Indian in the Cupboard, Inkheart, and now books like the Night Circus to name but a few. To narrow it down and to stop there is almost a physical pain because there are so many books and so many characters that touched me not just as a child, but throughout my short life time.
So yes characters are real and they are mine and every other book lover’s friend.