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These best quotes about books and reading will make any book lover feel all warm and cozy inside. The power of the written word oozes from them and both inspire you and make you think.

books are a uniquely portable magic

I’ve always wanted to compile the best quotes about books and reading, and it was a fun exercise to research and “hear” the best quotes about books and reading from beloved characters to beloved authors, political figures, and celebrities, all of which are below.

These best quotes about reading habits are not just meant for reading, but for sharing! You can use them to cultivate discussions on Bookstagram and in book club. You can also use these quotes for bookmarks.

And in my research, I tried my best to find the best quotes about books and reading that really made me either feel something or think more deeply.

Best Quotes About Books and Reading

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies . . . The man who never reads lives only one.” – George R.R. Martin

“Never trust anyone who has not brought a book with them.” – Lemony Snicket

“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” – C.S. Lewis

“Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary.” – Jim Rohn

“Think before you speak. Read before you think.” – Fran Lebowitz

“Let’s be reasonable and add an eighth day to the week that is devoted exclusively to reading.” – Lena Dunham

“The reading of all good books is like conversation with the finest (people) of the past centuries.” – Descartes

“In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you.” – Mortimer J. Adler

“Reading one book is like eating one potato chip.” – Diane Duane

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” – Dr. Seuss

“Books are a uniquely portable magic.” – Stephen King

“I read a book one day and my whole life was changed.” – Orhan Pamuk

“Reading brings us unknown friends.” – Honoré de Balzac

“The world was hers for the reading.” – Betty Smith

“Today a reader, tomorrow a leader.” – Margaret Fuller

“Once you have read a book you care about, some part of it is always with you.” – Louis L’Amour

“Many people, myself among them, feel better at the mere sight of a book.” – Jane Smiley

“Books are not made for furniture, but there is nothing else that so beautifully furnishes a house.” – Henry Ward Beecher

“Read the best books first, or you may not have a chance to read them at all.” – Henry David Thoreau

“I can’t imagine a man really enjoying a book and reading it only once.” – C.S. Lewis

“You know you’ve read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend.” – Paul Sweeney

“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” – Frederick Douglas

“There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all.” – Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis

“Wear the old coat and buy the new book.” – Austin Phelps

“To learn to read is to light a fire; every syllable that is spelled out is a spark.” – Victor Hugo

“The best books … are those that tell you what you know already.” – George Orwell

“Oh, magic hour, when a child first knows she can read printed words!” – Betty Smith

“I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library.” – Jorge Luis Borges

“Reading is a discount ticket to everywhere.” – Mary Schmich

“No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting.” – Mary Wortley Montagu

“If you are going to get anywhere in life you have to read a lot of books.” – Roald Dahl

Fill your house with stacks of books, in all the crannies and all the nooks.” – Dr. Seuss

“Rainy days should be spent at home with a cup of tea and a good book.” – Bill Patterson

“These books gave Matilda a hopeful and comforting message: You are not alone.” – Roald Dahl

“If you don’t like to read, you haven’t found the right book.” – J.K. Rowling

“Ah, how good it is to be among people who are reading.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

“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

“For my whole life, my favorite activity was reading. It’s not the most social pastime.” – Audrey Hepburn

“A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.” – C.S. Lewis

“Never put off till tomorrow the book you can read today.” – Holbrook Jackson

“Wherever I am, if I’ve got that book with me, I’ve got a place I can go and be happy.” – J.K. Rowling

“I am delighted with the book! I should like to spend my whole life in reading it. I assure you, if it had not been to meet you, I would not have come away from it for all the world.” – Jane Austen

“Books were my path to personal freedom.” -Oprah Winfrey

“When I look back, I am so impressed again with the life-giving power of literature. If I were a young person today, trying to gain a sense of myself in the world, I would do that again by reading, just as I did when I was young.” – Maya Angelou

“Happiness. That’s what books smells like.” – Saran MacLean

“But he recommended the books which charmed her leisure hours, he encouraged her taste, and corrected her judgment; he made reading useful by talking to her of what she read, and heightened its attraction by judicious praise.” – Jane Austen

“One of the many gifts that books give readers is a connection to each other. When we share an affection for a writer, an author or a story, we also have a better understanding of people unlike ourselves. Books cultivate empathy.” – Sarah Jessica Parker

“When you can escape into a book it trains your imagination to think big and to think that more can exist than what you see.” -Taylor Swift

“Books are a form of political action. Books are knowledge. Books are reflection. Books change your mind.” – Toni Morrison

“When I think of all the books still left for me to read, I am certain of further happiness.” -Jules Renard

“Some books are so familiar that reading them is like being home again.” -Louisa May Alcott

“What really knocks me out is a book that, when you’re all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it.” -J.D. Salinger

“More than at any other time, when I hold a beloved book in my hand my limitations fall from me, my spirit is free.” – Helen Keller

“I have challenged myself that I will read thousands of books and I will empower myself with knowledge. Pens and books are the weapons that defeat terrorism.” – Malala Yousafzai

“A fondness for reading, properly directed, must be an education in itself.” – Jane Austen

“Reading is escape, and the opposite of escape; it’s a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it’s a way of making contact with someone else’s imagination after a day that’s all too real.” -Nora Ephron

“The best advice I ever got was that knowledge is power and to keep reading.” – David Bailey

“Reading is an exercise in empathy; an exercise in walking in someone else’s shoes for a while.” – Malorie Blackman

“The library is inhabited by spirits that come out of the pages at night.” – Isabel Allende

“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.” – Joseph Addison

“A book is a dream you hold in your hands.” – Neil Gaiman“Books are the quietest and most constant of friends; they are the most accessible and wisest of counselors, and the most patient of teachers.” – Charles W. Eliot

“When I have a little money, I buy books; and if I have any left, I buy food and clothes.” – Erasmus

“One glance at a book and you hear the voice of another person, perhaps someone dead for 1,000 years. To read is to voyage through time.” – Carl Sagan

“That’s the thing about books. They let you travel without moving your feet.”Jhumpa Lahiri

“By reading only six hours a-day, I shall gain in the course of a twelve-month a great deal of instruction which I now feel myself to want.” – Jane Austen

“It is is better to know one book intimately than a hundred superficially.”Donna Tartt

“Books are good company, in sad times and happy times, for books are people – people who have managed to stay alive by hiding between the covers of a book.” – E.B. White

“A book is a garden, an orchard, a storehouse, a party, a company by the way, a counselor, a multitude of counselors.” – Charles Baudelaire

“A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading.” – William Styron

“The America I love still exists at the front desks of our public libraries.” – Kurt Vonnegut

“Books make people quiet, yet they are so loud.” – Nnedi Okorafor

“It is a good rule after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.” – C.S. Lewis

“If there is a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, you must be the one to write it.” – Toni Morrison

“If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.” – Haruki Murakami

“I am reading six books at once, the only way of reading; since, as you will agree, one book is only a single unaccompanied note, and to get the full sound, one needs ten others at the same time.” – Virginia Woolf

“And books! […] She would buy them all over and over again: she would buy up every copy, I believe, to prevent their falling into unworthy hands.” – Jane Austen

“It wasn’t until I started reading and found books they wouldn’t let us read in school that I discovered you could be insane and happy and have a good life without being like everybody else.” – John Waters

“Let us read, and let us dance; these two amusements will never do any harm to the world.” – Voltaire

“Reading is the sole means by which we slip, involuntarily, often helplessly, into another’s skin, another’s voice, another’s soul.” – Joyce Carol Oates

“A word after a word after a word is power.” – Margaret Atwood

“She read books as one would breathe air, to fill up and live.” – Annie Dillard

“Reading furnishes the mind only with materials of knowledge; it is thinking that makes what we read ours.” – John Locke

“A truly great book should be read in youth, again in maturity and once more in old age, as a fine building should be seen by morning light, at noon and by moonlight.” – Robertson Davies

“I think books are like people, in the sense that they’ll turn up in your life when you most need them.” – Emma Thompson

“I can feel infinitely alive curled up on the sofa reading a book.” – Benedict Cumberbatch

“Books and doors are the same thing. You open them, and you go through into another world.” – Jeanette Winterson

“We read to know we are not alone.” – C.S. Lewis

“Literature is the safe and traditional vehicle through which we learn about the world and pass on values from one generation to the next. Books save lives.” – Laurie Anderson

“Reading fiction is important. It is a vital means of imagining a life other than our own, which in turn makes us more empathetic beings. Following complex story lines stretches our brains beyond the 140 characters of sound-bite thinking, and staying within the world of a novel gives us the ability to be quiet and alone, two skills that are disappearing faster than the polar icecaps.” – Ann Patchett

“A room without books is like a body without a soul.” – Cicero

“I love the way that each book — any book — is its own journey. You open it, and off you go…” – Sharon Creech

“That is part of the beauty of all literature. You discover that your longings are universal longings, that you’re not lonely and isolated from anyone. You belong.” – F. Scott Fitzgerald

“Books may well be the only true magic.” – Alice Hoffman

“Books are not about passing time. They’re about other lives. Other worlds. Far from wanting time to pass, one just wishes one had more of it.” – Alan Bennett

“Reading changes your life. Reading unlocks worlds unknown or forgotten, taking travelers around the world and through time. Reading helps you escape the confines of school and pursue your own education.” – Donalyn Miller

“‘Classic’ – a book which people praise and don’t read.” – Mark Twain

“It is what you read when you don’t have to that determines what you will be when you can’t help it.” – Oscar Wilde

“You will learn most things by looking, but reading gives understanding. Reading will make you free.” – Paul Rand

“Sleep is good, he said, and books are better.” – George R.R. Martin

“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” – Jacqueline Kelly

“Books are both our luxuries and our daily bread.” – Henry Stevens

“I owe everything I am and everything I will ever be to books.” – Gary Paulsen

“A well-read woman is a dangerous creature.” – Lisa Kleypas

“My life is a reading list.” – John Irving

“Reading well is one of the great pleasures that solitude can afford you.” – Harold Bloom

“It is both relaxing and invigorating to occasionally set aside the worries of life, seek the company of a friendly book… from the reading of ‘good books’ there comes a richness of life that can be obtained in no other way.” – Gordon B. Hinckley

“If a book is well written, I always find it too short.” – Jane Austen

“What a blessing it is to love books.” – Elizabeth von Arnim

“I read my eyes out and can’t read half enough… the more one reads the more one sees we have to read.” – John Adams

“The importance of reading, for me, is that it allows you to dream. Reading not only educates, but is relaxing and allows you to feed your imagination – creating beautiful pictures from carefully chosen words.” – Eric Ripert

“When you lose yourself in a book the hours grow wings and fly.” – Chloe Thurlow

“The world belongs to those who read.” – Rick Holland

“If you would tell me the heart of a man, tell me not what he reads, but what he rereads.” – Francois Mauriac

“This week I’ve been reading a lot and doing little work. That’s the way things ought to be. That’s surely the road to success.” – Anne Frank

“Book collecting is an obsession, an occupation, a disease, an addiction, a fascination, an absurdity, a fate. It is not a hobby. Those who do it must do it.” – Jeanette Winterson

“It’s a good idea to have your own books with you in a strange place.” – Cornelia Funke

“The odd thing about people who had many books was how they always wanted more.” – Patricia A. McKillip

“Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled ‘This could change your life.'” – Helen Exley

“There are some books that reached through the noise of life to grab you by the collar and speak only of the truest things.” – Jeffrey Eugenides

“Knowing you have something good to read before bed is among the most pleasurable of sensations.” -Vladimir Nabokov

“Reading is still the main way that I both learn new things and test my understanding.” – Bill Gates

“Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.” – Mason Cooley

“I always felt if I can get to a library, I’ll be okay.” – Maya Angelou

“One of the joys of reading is the ability to plug into the shared wisdom of mankind.” – Ishmael Reed

“To read a book for the first time is to make an acquaintance with a new friend; to read it for a second time is to meet an old one.” – Chinese Saying

“An hour spent reading is one stolen from paradise.” – Thomas Wharton

“When you reread a classic you do not see more in the book than you did before; you see more in you than was there before.” – Clifton Fadiman

“No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading, or surrender yourself to self-chosen ignorance.” – Confucius

“I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.” – Groucho Marx

“Reading is a way for me to expand my mind, open my eyes, and fill up my heart.” – Oprah

 “I am a part of everything that I have read.” – Theodore Roosevelt

“A book is a gift you can open again and again.”  – Garrison Keillor

“Literacy is a bridge from misery to hope.” – Kofi Annan

“You can find magic wherever you look. Sit back and relax, all you need is a book.” – Dr. Seuss

“I think it’s the books that you read when you are young that live with you forever.” – J.K. Rowling

“Books give a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.” -Plato

“There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate’s loot on Treasure Island.” – Walt Disney

“We read books to find out who we are. What other people, real or imaginary, do and think and feel… is an essential guide to our understanding of what we ourselves are and may become.” – Ursula K. LeGuin

“Why can’t people just sit and read books and be nice to each other?” – David Baldacci

“Literature is news that stays news.” – Ezra Pound

“Libraries will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no libraries.” – Anne Herbert

“No two persons ever read the same book.” – Edmund Wilson

“As always, one of her books was next to her.” – Markus Zusak

“All I have learned, I learned from books.” – Abraham Lincoln

“She was fascinated with words. To her, words were things of beauty, each like a magical powder or potion that could be combined with other words to create powerful spells.” – Dean Koontz

“What better occupation, really, than to spend the evening at the fireside with a book, with the wind beating on the windows and the lamp burning bright…Haven’t you ever happened to come across in a book some vague notion that you’ve had, some obscure idea that returns from afar and that seems to express completely your most subtle feelings?” – Gustave Flaubert

“Fiction is like a spider’s web, attached ever so lightly perhaps, but still attached to life at all four corners.” – Virginia Woolf

“I read the way a person might swim, to save his or her life.” – Mary Oliver

“I read and think. So I do more reading and thinking, and make less impulse decisions than most people in business. I do it because I like this kind of life.” – Warren Buffett

“I wanted to crawl in between those black lines of print, the way you crawl through a fence, and go to sleep under that beautiful big green fig-tree.” – Sylvia Plath

“We lose ourselves in what we read, only to return to ourselves, transformed and part of a more expansive world.” – Judith Butler

“Be curious. Read widely. Try new things. What people call intelligence just boils down to curiosity.” – Aaron Swartz

“I like books that aren’t just lovely but that have memories in themselves. Just like playing a song, picking up a book again that has memories can take you back to another place or another time.” – Emma Watson

“If you love books enough, books will love you back.” – Jo Walton

“Come to the book as you would come to an unexplored land. Come without a map. Explore it and draw your own map.” – Stephen King

“I never need to find time to read. When people say to me, ‘Oh, yeah, I love reading. I would love to read, but I just don’t have time,’ I’m thinking, ‘How can you not have time?’ I read when I’m drying my hair. I read in the bath. I read when I’m sitting in the bathroom. Pretty much anywhere I can do the job one-handed, I read.” – J.K. Rowling

“She had her addictions and one of them was reading.” – Jeannette Walls

“There’s nothing as cozy as a piece of candy and a book.” – Betty MacDonald

“You don’t spend your life hanging around books without learning a thing or two.” – Lemony Snicket

“See, she goes places when she reads. I know all about that. When I’m reading, wherever I am, I’m always somewhere else.” – Rebecca Wells

“You see, one of the best things about reading is that you’ll always have something to think about when you’re not reading.” – James Patterson

“Sometimes, you read a book and it fills you with this weird evangelical zeal, and you become convinced that the shattered world will never be put back together unless and until all living humans read the book.” – John Green

“Books are like truth serum– if you don’t read, you can’t figure out what’s real.” – Rodman Philbrick

“Books became her friends and there was one for every mood.” – Betty Smith

“Never underestimate the power of a girl with a book.” – Ruth Bader Ginsburg


Books are more than just pages; they’re gateways to vast universes of thought and emotion. The quotes about books and reading we’ve delved into today underscore the timeless magic of reading.

And if these quotes resonated with you, share them with a fellow book lover and spread the literary love!

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