In an article published in the journal Psychological Science, researchers Shira Gabriel and Ariana Young say that the sense of belonging gained from a book is just as beneficial as one we would gain in the 'real' world.
The books they used in the study were well known vampire and magic stories, which they gave to undergraduates students to read, then monitored the readers' behaviour.
Dr Gabriel said: "This study suggests that books give us more than an opportunity to tune out and submerge ourselves in a fantasy world.
"When we enter the narrative we don't 'become' Harry or Edward, of course, but we do become a member of their world. That feels really good and it changes us."
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