1. Books don’t require leaving the house.
It’s February. It’s cold, snowing, and windy. Who wants fight traffic, drop $25 on a cab, or run to catch the bus? With a book, you can visit far off lands without leaving the house.
2. Books are always on time.
Hemingway and Faulker will never keep you waiting. Whether pick them up from your shelf or pre-order them on your e-reader, books will always be there when you’re ready for them.
3. You don’t have to choose just one.
Like fish in the sea (or books in a library), there can be too many to choose from. Dates get mad if you bring more than one, but when it comes to books, you can pick as many as you want.
4. Books are budget-friendly.
Dinner for two at a nice restaurant: $80. Movie tickets + popcorn and soda: $35. Library books: priceless. (Seriously, they don’t cost a thing!)
5. Reading a book requires no etiquette.
With a book, you don’t have to worry about dress codes and table manners. Come as you are: jeans, sweatpants, even a bathrobe, and read in whichever manner you prefer.
6. Books will never embarrass you.
When you’re on a date, it feels like everyone else in the restaurant can tell. You feel them staring at you as your date shovels food into their mouths or spills their red wine on their shirt. Avoid the humiliation and stay at home with a good book. Or if you and your book do go out, use an e-reader so no one knows what book you’re reading.
7. Books require less commitment.
Don’t like the book 30 pages in? Go ahead, put it down and pick up another. But if you’re not enjoying your date 30 minutes in, you’re stuck there until the check comes.
8. Books have been vetted. Most dates have not.
We’ve all been there: your date’s match.com photo had been taken 10 years ago, the friend that set you up neglected to mention the halitosis and hair loss, or halfway through dinner your date tells you they were recently laid off and evicted from their apartment. But books are reviewed and vetted across dozens of platforms (Amazon, Goodreads, etc.) They won’t just switch genres halfway through or end abruptly with no explanation.
9. Your book won’t give you unwanted attention.
Avoid the awkward goodnight kiss, hug, or handshake. At the end of the book, all you have to do is close it. (But if it was a really great book, you may want to hug it anyway. It won’t mind.)
10. A book never needs to know where your relationship stands.
Going on a date with someone on Valentine’s Day can send mixed signals. They think you’re more serious about them than you are or they run scared that the relationship is moving too fast. With books, your relationship is whatever you want it to be. No discussion required.
11. Books can be way more entertaining than a date.
Most dates consist of small talk (crazy weather, huh?), interview questions (so, where did you grow up?), and mundane chit chat. A book can entertain you for hours, without you having to utter a single word.
12. With a book, you’re in complete control.
Don’t be forced to go to a movie or a restaurant you don’t want to go to. If you feel like action, you can pick up some Ludlum. Feel like Japanese, you can grab Kazuo Ishiguro. When you’re with a book, it’s all up to you.
13. After a book, you’ll be a better person.
Unless you’re dating a Nobel Prize winner or Fullbright Scholar, you’re not coming back from that date any smarter. And unless your Valentine is Jackson Pollack, you’re not boosting your creativity either. Choose self-improvement this Valentine’s Day and pick up a book.
14. When you’re with a book, it’s okay to be single…
…because even when you’re single, when you’re with a book, you’re never alone.