Nothing beats a good book. Even a good meal, a glass of wine, a sunny vacation (or snowy, depending on your tastes) is no match for a story told by a master teller.
I few days ago I wrote in a post that I could probably make you hungry, and I believe it. I've read passages that have made my mouth water, that made me feel I was involved in the drunken melee, that I was the lover...
When I read, I get totally absorbed in the material. I allow the book to take me off to its world. I understand the *no spoilers* rules, because sometimes you want a story to tell you on its own. I don't wan tot know how the movie ends; I don't want to know what you got me for Christmas. I enjoy a good surprise.
My wife is finishing book 4 of the Twilight series, and she wants to tell me all about it. I keep stopping her, though. I know it frustrates her, because she loves it and wants to share, but I will read the series on my own, and don't want the plot to be unfolded before I get to it. Although there is some comfort in the fact that she is trying to summarize like 2,600 pages in two minutes, and it comes across more jumbled and confusing than my query letters ;-)