It's a cruel world. There's so many bad things happening in the world at the moment and that's why we need our books to help us escape. The simple things in a novel that makes us smile is something we all need, switching on the news every day is enough to depress us. Even when we don't have the time to read and we're walking around town, trying to find the nearest bookshop, there are other things that make us happy.

We decided to compile a list of things that make us readers happy, what brightens our day that's related to books and improves our mood.

1.  Seeing a child reading

It's 2014, children don't read anymore! They're too busy updating their facebook account on their smartphone. Sadly, this is accurate. I see a child as young as 6 with iPhones now and it's very disheartening. There are, however, those wonderful parents that swap the smart phone for a book. Don't you just smile when you see children being engrossed in a story, leaning on their mum or dad, world around them completely irrelevant? Yeah, me too. 

2. Seeing an inspiring book quote

Do you ever see a book quote that really inspires you and it makes you smile? Our local library has quotes around the walls and even in the shopping centre outside it. Whenever I walk past, I can't help but grin. 

3. Seeing a stranger read a book we enjoyed

Oh my gosh, I wonder how far along they are! I wonder if they're at that scene where... I wonder if they're enjoying it! They must be enjoying it! I should re-read it when I come home! Oh, I remember that cute scene on page 250... I'm definitely re-reading it when I come home. Would it be weird if I peer over their shoulder to see how far into the book they are? It would probably be weird. I'm doing it, though. Yes, inching closer... ooh, that's a good part! I can't wait to see their reaction when they get to that unexpected twist. Wait, they're leaving? But I need to know how they'll react to the twist! Will they gasp? Would it be weird if I follow them?

... I'm following them.

4. Good literary references

So you're talking to a newfound acquaintance and casually they drop that book into the conversation. You're watching a movie and in a seemingly unimportant filler scene the protagonist mentions that book you loved so much.

We dare you not to smile.

5. Reading sessions with loved ones

Just picture it: a lazy Sunday spent with a friend/loved one, curled up on a sofa, each with a (same or different) book, reading in peaceful silence, occasionally pausing to make coffee and discuss shocking parts/characters/pivotal scenes, then reading on. 

6. Book shopping

There is no real need to elaborate on this one, is there? But it's more than book shopping, really. It's the sole act of being in a bookstore, of being thoroughly and utterly surrounded and immersed in books. It's a beautiful thing, to be among so much diversity, in genre, author, shape, size, title, author... And let's not even get into the joy of finding that perfect book (the one we'd intended to buy, or just one we stumbled upon and loved at first sight) and taking it home with us. It's the dream.

7. Book merchandise

Whether it's the Great First Lines of Literature coffee mug, an original Book Map, a bookish tote bag, or a set of amazing badges - it never fails to make us smile. There's nothing quite like passing someone in the street and spying a "Read more books" tote on their arm. (Nor would we put it past a self-proclaimed book lover to approach said person and awkwardly enthuse about it to them). "Oh my god, you read, too! What do you read? Do you have a blog? Can I follow you online somewhere? Do you have Goodreads? Do you want to go book shopping? Wasn't that new book-to-movie adaptation so interestingly done? Do you want to discuss it? What do you mean, it's your mother's tote bag? It says you're a reader! You must read if you're carrying it around! No, don't walk away! I swear I'm not crazy! I just... read! No, there's no such thing as too much reading!"

8. Learning that a 21st century book has been introduced into the school reading curriculum

Required reading warrants its own separate post (which we intend to complete and publish soon enough). For the present, we'll only reflect on the warm fuzzies we get when we hear about a teacher willing to stray from the traditional reading curriculum in favor of the kind of reading material children might actually approve of. The world needs more of those teachers.

9. That new book smell

Forget the "new car smell". It's the new (or old, really) book smell that gets us all excited and, at times, nostalgic. Go and take a whiff of your favorite book. Inhale the intoxicating combo of ink and paper and allow it to take you back to all those other times you enjoyed a good-smelling book with an excellent story. We promise you'll forget all about the "new car smell"... provided that you consider yourself a book-lover.

Do you consider yourself a book lover? If so, can you relate to any of the situations above? Do you have different "triggers that make your book-loving heart do leaps? If so, share them with us in the comments below or discuss with us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.