In The New York Times “Sunday Book Review,” with a very cool cover by Maira Kalman, James Collins wrote the essay at the back, “The Plot Escapes Me,” on whether there’s a point to reading books when we can’t remember what’s in them. Although I do have difficulty remembering what I read, I admit this is a question I’ve never asked myself.

He consulted Maryanne Wolf, a professor of child development at Tufts University and the author of “Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain“(which I just ordered).

I recommend the essay, but we’re all busy. In what I consider to be the bottom line, Ms. Wolf said:

I totally believe that you are a different person for having read that book…I say that as a neuroscientist and an old literature major.

It is in some way working on you even though you aren’t thinking about it.

It’s there…You are the sum of it all.

I wanted to spread the good news. Keep reading.