Every reader exists in order to assure for a certain book a modest immortality.
~ Alberto Manguel, The Library at Night
How’s that for a raison d’être? Consider it a twist on Aristophanes’ explanation for the origin of the sexes in the Symposium. Were the reader and the book primordially one? Manguel doesn’t say. But rather than living to search the world for that other half we were born to love, we live to search the stacks for that “certain book” we were born to read.