As an English student I’ve observed more and more that lovers of literature, verbose and passionate as we are, tend to manifest our opinions so rigorously that you can fairly reduce readers down to handy stereotypes. Such as:
1. That person that who’ll never let go of Harry Potter
Okay, that’s unfair insofar as none of us will. Regardless, you’ve all met someone who can’t help but sort friends and enemies into Houses or pretend their pen is a wand when they think no one is looking. With any other long finished series I’d call this unhealthy, but damn it, I just can’t let it go either!
2. Victorian Goths
There’s no school like the old school and these people commit far beyond just the corsets and hats! Pale (not necessarily always) dark haired people, morbid as nothing else for whom life is an episode of Penny Dreadful. Dracula is their traveling companion, Phantom of the Opera their music and Wuthering Heights the superior of Romeo and Juliet in every way! Darkly humorous and fiercely intelligent, you’ll never go wrong with a classical goth among your friends.
3. That one friend who thinks Modernism is still a thing
It’s fine to appreciate that wonderful time between the early twenties until the forties when the artist collectively took a good look at itself. One can enjoy the verbal dexterity of Ulysses or find solace in the depth of Eliot. The pros with friends such is these is they’re usually pretty intelligent and interesting to talk to. The cons are they can sometimes have some pretty elitist views on books, viewing certain works as lacking merit just because they lack the ‘obscurity’ or ‘difficulty’ of their chain smoking idols. You’ll pretty much only love or hate these people.
4. Fan fiction writers
Technically all fanfic writers could be called super committed readers. In fact I’d rank them as the best. They have enjoyed a piece of art so much that they’ve reshaped it into something new! (Fun fact: The Ents from Lord of the Rings are only in the book because Tolkien was annoyed that trees didn’t literally move in MacBeth) I joke and make fun, but this masks serious props for the energy and creativity of these people, even if there content is sometimes a bit saucy!
Be it a reverence for the Brontës, an obsession with The Great Gatsby that just won’t quit or (I’m sorry to say it) wishing they could have a life like the Twilight saga, there will always be fans of romance. Books allow us to feel the experience of another intimately as if we were there and the effect is only magnified when it’s exploring something that we all want at the end of the day: Love. Though I will say, find a better relationship to emulate than Edward and Bella; your 25 year old self will thank you for it!
6. English Students
Don’t be us. We read so, so very much and feel so very little. Books are a job now; I both love them and hate them. The last modern book I remember enjoying was about a Milton scholar tracking down his daughter with his knowledge of Paradise Lost: This isn’t normal, no one should like that. Then again, maybe my book binge game is just too weak.
What do you think? Have you met people like this? Let us know in the comments!