My earliest, clearest memory of getting lost in a book is reading Jeremy Thatcher, Dragon Hatcher on a road trip with my family. We’d drive the entire day, and I was perfectly content to stick my head inside a book and not come out. When I finished the book, I realized two things:
First, I had no idea where we were.
Second, I felt a sharp pain in my heart. Not physically — an emotion pain, almost like regret, a mourning, I don’t really know how to describe it. Like a close friend was gone forever.
I have since felt that same pain over and over again. I felt it when I finished Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows. I felt it when I finished The Dark Tower VII. I’ve felt it the most strongly when finishing a short story; I love novels, and a good story, I feel, always leaves you wanting more.
Books are, for me, a transport to another world, and they are all about the journey. The journey always ends — and it hurts when it does — but there is always another waiting.